What is blooming or emerging now

M. Gastil-Buhl gastil.buhl@gmail.com
Sun, 17 Nov 2013 19:28:53 PST
The first Narcissus tazetta orientalis opened last week, ones I  
watered starting in August. The Crocus goulimyi are just finishing.  
And the fruit trees are losing their leaves just in time for the bulb  
leaves to need the sun.  So now it feels like autumn, except for the  
lack of rain. Some bright magenta Nerine are blooming, perhaps Nerine  
bowdenii but I do not have a tag for them as they have been growing in  
that spot for 20 years. One DIerama, the odd one, is blooming. I do  
not know its species. The Oxalis from last year's BX are mostly still  
blooming and the pink Oxalis purpurea is just coming into its season  
to show off at the front gate. I noticed today the leaves of the pink  
variety are more blue-ish than the purple variety, which has not yet  
begun to bloom.

Since this is a meager season for flowers, I will note what bulbs  
leaves are now emerging. Some Narcissus are only just now emerging,  
ones that were not dug up this year but did not receive water until  
October. The Leucojum have just barely broken ground surface. The  
Veltheimia have been growing their lush rosettes of leaves for about a  
month now and one has a hint of a tip of a flower bud. (The leaves do  
have a very slight hint of longitudinal veining.) The Scilla peruviana  
and S. hyacinthoides are expanding their deep green and blue-ish green  
stars of leaves, respectively, but these are still all curled and  
pointed upwards. Only later in the winter when their leaves lengthen  
do they flop over. My guess is this stage is designed to catch and  
funnel water whereas the later umbrella-like arrangement channels  
water away from the bulb. I was particularly happy to see the  
Ammocharis longifolia has finally emerged with its torn-off appearing  
leaves after a year of no above-ground growth. Several planting  
baskets in the plunge bed have tiny leaves, some Babiana, Ixia, Moraea  
and Gladiolus. One Gladiolus is forming a spike. The Lachenalia  
species from the BX recently have emerged an inch above their pot in  
part shade under the arbor. I am not sure how much sun these want.

Here are a few photos:

- Gastil
Santa Barbara, California
Approximately 9b, maybe 10a, similar to Sunset zone 24 except with  
frost December-February and usually rain by now

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