An unapologetic plant geek shares advice and opinions on gardening, the contrived and the natural landscape, as well as occasional topics from the other side of the gate.

November 15, 2011

Bloom Day - Any Day Now

We are living on the edge here in this corner of Tidewater.  There have been a couple of dips into the thirties, though no frosts or freezes yet.  Slightly west and north it's a different story, but the Chesapeake and the Atlantic are still warm enough to lend us a few degrees. So what does waiting for winter to arrive mean to the garden?  Some of the plants I have been enjoying this summer are more tropical than others, and these suffered during the recent cooler nights, others have already been pulled to make room for pansies, while the rest just hang on half heartedly blooming and should probably be put out of their misery. Other blooms are just starting to come into their own and are helping to ease my way into winter.

This was the first year that I planted Heavenly Blue Morning Glory (Ipomoea tricolor 'Heavenly Blue'), and I have had blooms here and there.  However, it is now blooming heavily and covered in buds, even though the foliage is hideously disfigured. I can only hope the flowers will continue to open.

Ipomoea tricolor 'Heavenly Blue'

Some hangers-on from last month include Mexican Bush Sage (Salvia leucantha)...

Salvia leucantha

... Bolero Chrysanthemum (Dendranthemum 'Bolero')...

Dendranthemum 'Bolero'

... and my Toad Lily (Tricyrtis hirta), which has amazed me with its flower's longevity.

Tricyrtis hirta

Tricyrtis hirta (2)

Appropriate for November is Ajania pacifica. For some reason, I have never liked this plant's common name (Silver and Gold Chrysanthemum), nor was I happy with its recent botanical name change from Chrysanthemum pacificum.  I really appreciate this plant, not so much for the flowers, which I consider a bonus, but for its persistent foliage that asks for very little.  This picture also shows the ferny foliage of Amsonia hubrichtii, one of the few perennials known for it fall color, which is why I planted it.  The skim milk blue flowers are not my favorite.

Ajania pacifica and Amsonia hubrichtii

My Arbutus (Arbutus unedo 'Compacta'),aka Strawberry Tree, is in full bloom now, and a little cold weather or even a freeze will not change that.  The fruit from last year's flowers is ripening now as well.

Arbutus unedo 'Compacta' (2)

Arbutus unedo 'Compacta'

We will end with the first floats in the Camellia parade (all of these are Camellia sasanqua).  First up is Autumn Rocket.

Camellia sasanqua 'Autumn Rocket'

Kanjiro

Camellia sasanqua 'Kanjiro'

Showa-No-Sakae

Camellia sasanqua 'Show-No-Sake'

Yuletide

Camellia sasanqua 'Yuletide'

Camellia sasanqua 'Yuletide' (2)

Camellia sasanqua 'Yuletide' (3)

I know that any day now winter could show its face, but until then I will enjoy what blooms I do have.  If you would like to see what other gardeners are offering for Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, then you need to stop by May Dreams Garden, where Carol hosts a garden party on the 15th of each month, no matter the weather.

26 comments:

  1. My favorite photo of this set is the Showa-No-Sakae with your earth-stained hand. Grimy and marvelous.

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  2. Ah, your camellias, what beauties they are. Happy bloom day.

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  3. I agree with Michael - your earth stained hand with the camellia is just perfect! Lovely, as always.

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  4. Lovely pictures -- it's so neat to see a garden from near where I grew up (Norfolk) now that I'm all the way down in New Zealand!

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  5. Strange that we have had one frost here in North Florida and you have not. The photos of your flowers are beautiful.

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  6. Les, I simply adore the Toad Lily and all the Camellias!
    Happy GBBD :)

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  7. Your garden looks great. The flower bloom is impressive. I love your toad lily shots.

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  8. Fabulous photo of Ajania pacifica and the Amsonia...two plants I've been toying with the idea of adding to my garden. This picture is pushing me a little further into the "do it" side of things.

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  9. I am referring all admirers of 'Moudry' to you for a stern talking to. I love 'Yuletide', but it's not hardy here. However, Charles Cresson just gave me a small red Korean camellia, grown from a cutting of the plant I featured in my fall-blooming camellia post last December. It is loaded with buds. I am so excited--blooms in fall and spring.

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  10. It's the beginning of the most exciting season of the year, Camellias!

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  11. Here in upstate NY I can only dream about growing camellias. I loved all of your photos. Sigh...it's going to be a long winter. Happy GBBD.

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  12. I like the toad lilies and the Mexican bush sage.

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  13. Very nice Les! That arbutus too cool!

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  14. Really like Yueltide. Is it hardy in zone 6? I can guess not.

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  15. Les, I love your camellias and every time I see them I think, "Ah, go ahead and give them another try gail."
    Maybe, I will! gail

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  16. All wonderful. I love the combination of the chrysanthemum pacificum (I didn't know it changed names) with the other plant - is it amsonia?

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  17. We were so close a few nights ago as well. At least all the tropicals are safe and sound in the greenhouse. It has been a magnificentfall for Noisette roses and Sasanqua camellia! Seems you are having some of the same thing.

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  18. Love the Mexican Bush Sage and Toad Lily! Great contrast with the soiled gardening hand holding the camella.....(hmmm...makes me wonder about the condition of your camera hand?!) Great photos!

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  19. You've almost convinced me to like camellias - but it is that chrysanth that I have fallen for. Your garden is looking lovely, no mean feat at this time of year! Good luck with the Morning Glory.

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  20. I must admit, I was so looking forward to seeing parade floats filled with camellia blooms! You got me on that one... I guess the Parade of Rose's was in my mind...

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  21. Beautiful post...gorgeous photos...I'm so in love with that Salvia leucantha!

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  22. When I'm in waist-deep snow up north this winter, I will depend on your photographs to supply me with the sweet essence of home.

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  23. Les, nice parade. Seems you like to get your hands dirty. lol. I too will try a amsonia soon. Had a professor once call the Broadleaf evergreens the "bread and butter" of the southern landscapes, doubt if I could grow the Camelias but maybe in a micro-climate.....thanks for stopping by.

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  24. great strawberry tree fruit photo. The fruit is edible though a bit chalky.

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  25. Earth stained hands...sigh but yes! I always come across your blog in google searches, but this time I couldn't help but notice something about a garden party the 15th of every month! Be still my heart...do tell!

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