Friday, January 15, 2016

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - January 2016

Alas, I have even less blooming this month than last! I don't consider myself a flower gardener, but I'll admit that flowers are a really enjoyable part of growing the plants I like - except the Agaves, who perish after flowering - not that I have ever had Agave blooms here in Portland.  But I digress.

There's no denying that in the dead of winter we all look for that tiny, bright, tell-tale sign that life is continuing. So here, for the record, is what's blooming indoors and outdoors at Longview Ranch, with a few "almost in bloom" and "maybe for February Bloom Day".

Arctostaphylos x 'Austin Griffiths' is blooming its heart out for the third month in a row, delighting the Anna's Hummingbirds who check it multiple times a day. I can see it from my breakfast room, and it's a sight for sore eyes on these wet, short days.

My Hellebores have always been really late, and this year is no exception. I guess I'll check back in February.

I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw that Abutilon megapotamicum, for all the blooms that got whacked by the snow and ice, had two new blossoms that were perfect.

Three dwarf Pieris japonica 'Prelude' are ramping up for their spring show. But how many months will it be before they actually bloom?

Good ole' Rosemarinus prostratus 'Bonny Jean', again this month. It was sold as a cold hardy prostrate selection, and it's proving itself.

Mahonia repens blooms are still tightly closed. I don't think we'll see them before March, at the earliest.

Likewise Camellia japonica 'April Kiss'. The buds look like they're showing color, but I think it's a fake out. Whaddaya think - April maybe?

Our recent "silver thaw" did its worst work on the emergent Camellia sasanqua 'Yuletide' blossoms.

But afterward, the life force of these great winter shrubs prevailed. Now we have multiple, newly-opening flowers.

Moving indoors, here are the tiny bloom spikes of Ledebouria socialis.
Streptocarpella sports one perfect bloom in the very best blue.

And we finish with another "next month?" One of my Sarracenia is sporting its first flower bud!

Bloom Day is sponsored monthly at May Dreams Gardens. Click over to see flowers from across the nation and around the world.

Happy Bloom Day!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Wednesday Vignette - more baby ferns

I'm endlessly drawn to ferns. Good thing, too, since we have an abundance of them here in the Pacific Northwest.

The best part is when they grow themselves, sometimes appearing in the most charming of places. The ones below are growing through moss on the trunk of an Acer negundo 'Variegatum' on my hell strip. I'm pretty sure these are baby Sword Ferns, Polystichum munitum. ("Anonymous" thinks they may be Licorice ferns,  Polypodium glycyrrhiza, and I'm starting to think that's right.)

If you see raindrops on my lens, it's because we are back to the wet winter conditions that encourage these sweet wild things to thrive. If it has to rain, at least I'm glad we can enjoy this kind of result.

Wednesday Vignette is hosted by Anna, at Flutter and Hum - check it out!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Wednesday Vignette - a summer flashback

It's still cold here - no surprise in the early days of January - so I rather desperately need this sunny, bright reminder of last year's warmth and lushness. The Penstemon rupicola and self-seeded Sisyrinchium californicum are sweet reminders of what's in store for me and my garden again this summer.

For more Wednesday vignettes, hop over to Flutter and Hum where the lovely Anna hosts this meme each week.