What Else is Blooming....

Angela and Dean Offer angelasgarden@bigpond.com
Fri, 05 May 2006 23:44:20 PDT
Hello Mary Sue,
It sounds like your climate is very similar to mine!
(except I'm in the southern hemisphere)  do you get snow/frost?.  I don't
(maybe 1 frost a year).  But in Albany it is always drizzly rain.  But sunny
today, sometimes misty in winter - we are heading into winter now.
I have some seeds of hosta ventricosa
and mirabilis jalapa ( marvel of peru)
to give away.  I will send via PBS, if ok to send to the USA, also some
bulbs of hippeastrum.
Watsonias are a noxious weed here!
Albany in Western Australia
----- Original Message -----
From: "Mary Sue Ittner" <msittner@mcn.org>
To: "Pacific Bulb Society" <pbs@lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Friday, May 05, 2006 10:31 PM
Subject: Re: [pbs] What Else is Blooming....

> Hi all,
> Here in Northern California it finally stopped raining. It's looking like
> this may be it until next fall. When I am out hiking or even driving there
> are so many hillsides  that are naked from the slides and you pass
> of the road where there was room for the highway department to deposit all
> the soil that came down onto the road that are piled high with dirt. After
> some much welcome sunshine we are now into our coastal pattern of morning
> fog. I was amused to see the weather channel on television describe San
> Francisco as one of the sunniest cities in the United States. I would have
> loved to know how they measured this. Perhaps it was days with sunshine?
> if even a few minutes in a day the sun is out, it counts?
> A lot of my bulbs from South Africa did not appreciate the excessive
> continuous rain we had this year, but now that it has stopped my garden is
> a blaze of color as those late blooming species are putting on a show and
> my native bulbs are starting. This is the time of year that I have masses
> of Homerias, Ixias, Babianas, and also some Tritonias in bloom. I keep
> digging out Babianas to share and you can't tell it from looking at any of
> those spots where there are hundreds of flowers and solid color. A couple
> of years ago I dug Babianas and cleaned them off and sent them to the BX.
> They were not all claimed and Dell had them left over for the sale. I'm
> sure why they were so unpopular, but it makes me reluctant to sort any I
> divide again since it was so much work. I guess they just don't grow for
> many of you in different climates. Some of the later blooming
> species/hybrids do so well in the ground here. I have some that are
> next to Camissonia ovata (which I have been tempted to add to a wiki page
> since it behaves like a geophyte dying back in our dry summer). It is a
> short plant with bright yellow flowers so looks really pretty with the
> purple Babianas. Moraea bellendenii must have liked all that rain because
> it is blooming everywhere this year. Some years I hardly see it. And even
> Scilla peruviana (Oncostema peruviana) has been blooming. It often skips a
> year or two here too even with a dry period in summer. I have some orange
> Homerias growing alongside a Felicia  that I grew from seed and the orange
> and purple combination is also very pleasing. My Iris douglasiana is
> blooming all over my garden and some of the Pacific Coast hybrids are
> blooming too and some Sparaxis. Where all these things come together in
> spot it is quite inspiring even if a bit wild. I tried for a couple of
> years to dig out all the Sparaxis I could find after learning some of them
> were virused, but it seems like a lost cause as they keep coming back.  I
> have some amazing colorful hybrids. And there are a few of the late
> blooming Lachenalias that have pretty flowers although their leaves are a
> bit weather stressed. Some of the later Gladiolus species are spiking and
> Watsonias are blooming too. I have some planted next to one of my South
> African Ericas that is blooming at the moment and the combination is very
> appealing. Jane's Anemone palmata is still blooming. What a treasure. My
> Delphiniums have been blooming for months. I have found a number that
> return planted in the ground, but some only survive in containers. The
> snails, slugs, and birds decimate some of the species, but other species
> survive. So far D. nudicaule, D. luteum, D. hesperium, D. hansenii, and D.
> patens are returning in the ground.
> I put a large pot of Erythronium californicum in another pot in the ground
> and it has been gorgeous this year. The wild populations were a site to
> behold.
> My Calochortus are looking a bit sad although the C. uniflorus have had a
> good run and finally starting  late C. umbellatus as well. I have spikes
> some of the Mariposas, but they definitely did not respond well to months
> of almost daily rain. I think I should just give up on most of those
> species from dry climates. On the other hand my Dichelostemma capitatum is
> much better than usual and D. multiflorum is just starting and D. ida-maia
> has a lot of buds. D. volubile that I grew from seed years ago and also
> from the BX has never bloomed so there must be something about my
> conditions it doesn't like. I have a lot of Triteleias in bloom and they
> were unfazed by our weather. (T. ixioides, T. bridgesii, T. laxa, T.
> montana, T. lilacina, T. dudleyi). There is one population of T. laxa from
> Ron Ratko seed that I am wondering if it could be a hybrid with T.
> bridgesii. The stamens are attached at two levels, but the flowers have a
> translucent shiny throat. I had to recheck my key and it doesn't quite fit
> either one. The Brodiaeas  are budding. Allium hyalinum has been blooming
> since December, but most of my other native Alliums are just starting. I'm
> sure there's more I have forgotten, but these are the ones that spring to
> mind.
> With flowering shrubs in bloom too, progress in the garden is slow. I just
> want to take it all in and also take more photographs even if I already
> have some from previous years.
> Mary Sue
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