Thursday, June 19, 2008

June Bloom Day

Yes, I am a little late again but most of these photos were taken last Sunday. I am just now getting around to posting them. I didn't think I would have many blooms to show this month other than ones that I have already posted. The lavatera, bougainvillea, Lion's Tail and others are all still in full bloom. Then I remembered the forgotten plants, the ones I don't think about very much either because I didn't plant them, they just grew, or because they have been in the garden so long that I take them for granted.

Heading the list of those plants that I take for granted are my rose bushes. I started out with six hybrid teas 37 years ago and one of those plants is still there. I think it is called Pink Dreams or something like that. You probably can't get it anymore, but it has the most wonderful smell. The photo at the top is of one of the newer bushes from New Zealand, MACgenev. It also has a wonderful smell and is very disease resistant. When the other bushes get mildew (usually during the June Gloom time), this one doesn't.

Another plant that I not only take for granted, but have actually been thinking of getting rid of is this hydrangea. It is supposed to be purple in color, but this year I didn't get out there in time with an acid soil amendment so the alkaline soil and water of Southern California turned it pink. I will only have a few blooms this year because my gardener, who is unfamiliar with this plant, trimmed it way back last winter before I could stop him. The blooms come on last year's growth, so if you cut all the stems back, you get lots of new leaves, but no blooms.

I once mentioned this plant to a friend and he said, "Hydrangea? As in hydra? As in water?" Yes, this is not a drought tolerant plant. My only excuse was that this plant started out as a container plant on the patio, and when the container disintegrated (it was redwood), I moved the plant once and then again to its current location. It's just not satisfactory where it is. It's close to the house and gets plenty of shade and water runoff from the roof in the winter, but then just as the blooms are coming out in June, the sun hits it and the leaves dry out. It's gotta go.

This second hydrangea is still a lovely blue because it is still in the pot, a gift from a student. Hydrangeas, especially the blue ones, remind me of Nantucket, one of my favorite places.

Over in the herb garden, this plant started coming up and I almost pulled it. I thought the leaf pattern was interesting so I left it and now I remember that it's a chrysanthemum that I just stuck in the ground last fall when I felt the garden needed some fall color. This bud has opened a little early. Hopefully, the plants will survive the summer heat.

Plants that planted themselves include this no-name plant. It blew over from my neighbor's garden. It's very common around here, so I should know the name, but since I didn't plant it, I don't. But I do like the cool blue-purple flowers that come out in June. They make a nice contrast to all the orange flowers I have in the front.

Another plant that just appeared is this bed of gazanias down by the street. It's in an impossible place wedged in between the curb and the cable box and gets water from me only once a week. It got started because I let the fallen leaves from the ficus tree collect there and they made a nice natural mulch. The bright sunshine-yellow flowers are a cheery greeting to visitors.


  1. The blue globe flower is lily of the Nile or agapanthus.

  2. All in all the pictures are wonderful.. The pink hydrangea plant is a very vivid Pink (hot Pink)Sorry it has to go.