Queen in December

Once again, a Queen butterfly (Danaus gillipus) has been gracing the garden...

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In a Vase: Silver and Blue

Narcissus autumn colors

As I walked out into the garden, I was greeted by a particularly strong burst of blue; initially I noticed it in the full-flowering, blue-stemmed stalks of Salvia farinacea.  Looking further, I realized I had a whole host of blues and near-blues from assorted lavenders.  I did not use all of them, only Lavandula x intermedia and L. x Goodwin's Creek Gray.

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Late November Views

the south border

I thought I would get my hand in with an End of the Month View this time.  It's been quite a while, but now the garden is finally to the stage where wide views of the borders make a little sense.  So I thought I would join in with Steve at Glebe House Garden.


The top photo should look familiar to long-time readers of this blog.  This is the South Border, a blend of lavender-purple and soft pinks, home to two large ornamental grasses still in bloom.  The dark-leaved Pennisetum setaceum rubrum blooms throughout summer, while the pink haze of Muhlenbergia capillaris "Regal Mist" is much shorter lived, an autumn luxury.  The Catharanthus will continue strongly until we actually get cold weather.  The miniature roses are approaching the size of their full-scale relations!


I just posted the East Border in my belated Tuesday View post, so let us walk back up the path and look at the Central Bed.


This next photo looks down its south side, where I have planted a mix of pinks and reds.  Prominently from this angle there are miniature rose "Daniela" and Gaura (Oenothera lindheimeri noID).  Hollyhock "Creme de Cassis" sneaks in an appearance also, though not so much as a couple of weeks ago, when the dog toppled the taller stems.  The Alnwick Rose is just visible at the far right.  Not to mention the little green patches in the path - what is left from my planting of Myoporum parvifolium, which nearly gave up this summer.  As I have no sprinklers, the question of what to do with the paths remains open.  I'd prefer to have something green and cool underfoot, but that is difficult to achieve!

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The East Border: A Season for Narcissus

narcissus autumn colors

While there is not a great deal to show as yet, this November is turning into narcissus season in the East Border.


With its yellow and orange theme, this is the border where most of the narcissus bulbs get planted.  I've added the pink-cupped "Pink Charm" to the Central Bed this month, and a few other varieties in other spots around the garden, but there is no doubt that the East Border is the most obvious place to put narcissus.


It was pleasant and mildly surprising to find "Autumn Colors" sprouting in good time this year.  It was said to bloom in November and December, but that information comes from Santa Cruz, CA, and I dared not take it for certain that it would be on the same schedule in my own harsher desert climate.


All in good time, however...

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In a Vase: Which Season?

In yesterday's post the first of the Narcissus flowers were in bloom under the Acacia tree.  This morning I found the first fully open blooms on the double yellow "Golden Rain".  While I knew that "Autumn Colors" was a very early bloomer, I am more surprised by "Golden Rain".  But whatever the season, the narcissus are definitely a presence in the garden now.


So today I decided to go ahead and cut that first stalk of bloom from "Autumn Colors" for my Monday vase.

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