Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day August 2016

Gentiana paradoxa

Gentiana paradoxa

I find myself at the beach for this Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day, but before leaving I snapped a few shots of the flowering activity around our hillside.  The gentian pictured above is a vigorous spreader in the Alpine bed that is a reliable harbinger of fall.  The feathery insides of the flower make it one of the prettiest flowers I know.

The rest of the yard is dominated by the hardy annuals and sturdy perennials that can make it through a dry Maryland summer.  A great example is the state flower, Black-eyed Susans, that dominates our front bed.

Black-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia hirta)

Black-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia hirta)

In the vegetable garden we often grow Mexican Sunflower (Sithonia) which are very attractive to butterflies.

Tithonia

Tithonia

There a number of plants that deserve special praise for returning one or more times during the summer.

Clematis 'Roguchi'

Clematis ‘Roguchi’

Asclepias 'Hello Yellow'

Asclepias ‘Hello Yellow’

Salvia guaranitica 'Black and Blue'

Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’

The salvia is not supposed to be hardy in our area, but it has returned reliably for 5 years now.

The two lobelias, red and blue, are winners for an August garden.

Lobelia cardinalis

Lobelia cardinalis

Great Blue Lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica)

Great Blue Lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica)

Amongst the shrubs, the Hydrangea ‘Limelight makes a long and lovely showing.

Hydrangea 'Limelight'

Hydrangea ‘Limelight’

From the greenhouse a number of the formosa lilies are in full flower.

lilium formosanum

lilium formosanum

And the small Herbertia texensis is putting out it’s complex flowers.

Herbertia texensis

Herbertia texensis

Let me close, because the beach is calling, with a wildlife image from the garden.  I found this remarkably lovely caterpillar on a tree peony leaf.

Caterpillar (American Dagger Moth?)

Caterpillar (American Dagger Moth?)

 

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day July 2016

Orienpet Lily 'Anastasia'

Orienpet Lily ‘Anastasia’

Well, if you had to pick a theme flower for this month’s Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day it would the lilies.  Despite the dry weather we have been experiencing, they are exploding all over the yard, especially the hybrids between orientals and trumpets (aka orienpets).  They are tall, fragrant, floriferous, and individually stunning.

Orienpet Lily 'Anastasia' single bloom

Orienpet Lily ‘Anastasia’ single bloom

In the house they make quite a display too.

Orienpet Lily 'Anastasia' in the house

Orienpet Lily ‘Anastasia’ in the house

Here are some others of the lily orienpet persuasion.

Orienpet Lily 'Scheherazade'

Orienpet Lily ‘Scheherazade’

Orienpet Lily 'Scheherazade' single flower

Orienpet Lily ‘Scheherazade’ single flower

Orienpet Lily 'Pretty Woman'

Orienpet Lily ‘Pretty Woman’

Of course, even the old-fashioned orientals are pretty spectacular.

Oriental lily ‘Time Out’

Oriental lily ‘Time Out’

Oriental Lily 'Casablanca'

Oriental Lily ‘Casablanca’

Oriental Lily 'Muscadet'

Oriental Lily ‘Muscadet’

And then a new one added to collection this year is Lilium henryii hybrid.

Lilium henryi hybrid 'Madame Butterfly'

Lilium henryi hybrid ‘Madame Butterfly’

There are course still many annuals and some of the standard perennials, but one of the species that has asked for special recognition is the Crocosmia.  These wonderful bulbs from the iris family are durable, productive and beautiful, year after year.

Crocosmia 'Lucifer'

Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’

Crocosmia × crocosmiflora 'George Davison'

Crocosmia × crocosmiflora ‘George Davison’

Another new plant for us is the popular anemone ‘Wild Swan’.

Anemone 'Wild Swan' front

Anemone ‘Wild Swan’ front

It is especially characterized by the purple markings on the back of the petals.

Anemone 'Wild Swan' back

Anemone ‘Wild Swan’ back

In the greenhouse we have several noteworthy arrivals.  First a very unusual Pineapple Lily.

Eucomis vandermerwei

Eucomis vandermerwei

This is only found in the wild between 7000′ and 8000′ in South Africa.   At some point I might experiment with growing it outside.

Also from South Africa is member of the Amaryllis family, Cyrtanthus elatus x montanus.

Cytanthus elatus x montanus

Cytanthus elatus x montanus

A little Cyclamen is flowering from seed planted in 2013.

Cyclamen hederifolium

Cyclamen hederifolium

And a welcome returnee is this rain lily.

Habranthus brachyandrus

Habranthus brachyandrus

One of the fun things for me is finding the unusual animals that populate the yard, if you take the time to notice them.  Last week it was this wonderful dime-sized spider that caught my eye.

Jumping spider from the greenhouse

Jumping spider from the greenhouse

 

A Higher State (Steppe to Alpine)

Steamboat Lake and Mule's Ears (Wyethia mollis)

Steamboat Lake and Mule’s Ears (Wyethia mollis)

We just returned last week from a spectacular trip to Colorado that was focused on the North American Rock Garden Society‘s (NARGS) annual meeting.  The theme was ‘A Higher State — Steppe to Alpine’ and it was in two locations, the Denver Botanic Garden and Steamboat Springs over 5 days.  It had been a while since we had been to Colorado, so we met with friends and family in Boulder and Golden beforehand.  I’ll try to give a brief overview of what was a wonderful and relaxing exploration of mountain wildflowers.

Hiking just outside of Boulder we encountered this lovely Calochortus.

Calochortus gunnisonii

Calochortus gunnisonii

The NARGS meeting began at the Denver Botanic Garden where we got a personalized tour of the rock gardens by Mike Kintgen who oversees the Alpine collection.

Mike Kintgen at DBG

Mike Kintgen at DBG

Their garden features a crevice garden which has been established for several years now (long enough to see several successful cushions)

Crevice garden at the DBG

Crevice garden at the DBG

They manage to grow the wonderful Devil’s Claw that we first saw in the Dolomites last year.

Physoplexis comosa in a trough at DBG

Physoplexis comosa in a trough at DBG

The Denver Botanic Gardens are not to be missed if you are in Denver.  In this season they have a spectacular display of Foxtail Lilies.

Through the looking glass

Through the looking glass

A Sea of Foxtail lilies

A Sea of Foxtail lilies

On our way to Steamboat Springs we stopped at the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens in Vail which has newly constructed tufa wall for optimum planting of tiny alpines.

New Tufa bed at Vail

New Tufa bed at Vail

And the outside part of the gardens is quite nice as well.

Betty Ford Alpine Garden

Betty Ford Alpine Garden

In Steamboat Springs we visited local gardens including the Yampa River Botanic Park which right along the Yampa River in a very pretty setting.  They have built a stunning crevice garden there.

Crevice Garden at the Yampa River Botanic Garden

Crevice Garden at the Yampa River Botanic Park

Another view of the Crevice Garden at the Yampa River Botanic Garden

Another view of the Crevice Garden

Panorama of the Crevice Garden at the Yampa River Botanic Garden

Panorama of the Crevice Garden at the Yampa River Botanic Park

I fell in love with a little Stachys planted in one of the crevice locations.

Stachys lavandulafolia

Stachys lavandulafolia

We also took several hikes in the trails surrounding Steamboat Springs.  We drove out through countryside that really summed up what steppes are all about.

Steppes near North Park

Steppes near North Park

Just along the side of the road we saw beautiful Lewisia and Shooting Stars.

Lewisia rediviva

Lewisia rediviva

A sea of Shooting Stars

A sea of Shooting Stars

Dodecahedron puchellum

Shooting Star (Dodecahedron puchellum)

One stop near a trailhead into the Zirkel Wilderness area produced a bevy of these very small Ladyslipper Orchids

Ladyslipper Orchid (Cypripedium fasciculatum)

Ladyslipper Orchid (Cypripedium fasciculatum)

We stayed a few days past the conference and on the last day of hiking we walked up a ridge near the Rabbit Ears pass area.  The views were excellent, but it was remarkable how you had to pay close attention to see that the hillside was covered with wildflower treasures.

Windy Ridge rich with wild flowers

Windy Ridge rich with wild flowers, especially Glacier Lilies, Lewisia, and Larkspur.

Erythroniums galore

Erythroniums galore

Glacier Lily (Erythronium grandiflorum)

Glacier Lily (Erythronium grandiflorum)

 

Lewisia pygmaea

Lewisia pygmaea

Lewisia pygmaea (White form?)

Lewisia pygmaea (White form?)

Delphinium nuttallianum

Delphinium nuttallianum

And a final sighting on this ridge was a very nice ground orchid.

Spotted Coralroot

Spotted Coralroot (Corallorhiza maculata)

All in all, a wonderful trip, with a suitcase full of tiny treasures brought back to Maryland from the plant sales at the conference.  My thanks to Laporte Avenue Nursery and Sunscapes Rare Plant Nursery.

Also, I should mention that the Denver Botanic Garden has published a very nice book on this region of the world (and similar) entitled ‘Steppes: The Plants and Ecology of the World’s Semi-arid Regions‘.  Check it out…

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day June 2016

Lilium asiatic 'Netty's Pride'

Lilium asiatic ‘Netty’s Pride’

Ok, this is way late for Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day.  No Excuses.  Everyone has gardens to build, weed, water, and harvest.  But what really slows me down in posting is when I find a lovely flower that I acquired years ago and can’t figure out what the name is.  And that leads me to the internet and well, you know how that goes.  One thing leads to another and pretty soon you are buying another few plants instead of posting about the ones you have.

Anyway here are some of the flowers that I should have been sharing.  Lillies and Iris are foremost.  The Spuria Iris are some of my favorites.

Spuria Iris 'Cinnebar Red'

Spuria Iris ‘Cinnebar Red’

Spuria Iris 'Shelford Giant'

Spuria Iris ‘Shelford Giant’

The Spuria are generally pretty tall, but Shelford Giant is especially high up before it flowers.

Spuria Iris 'Shelford Giant' showing height

Spuria Iris ‘Shelford Giant’ showing height

I used to focus on the bearded Iris but I’ve found that many of the other species Iris are more reliable and enjoyable.  I’ve never had the Iris borers focus on the other species the way they can on the bearded hybrids.  In particular the Japanese Iris have a way of making nice clumps in the perennial gardens.

Iris ensata ' Agripinella'

Iris ensata ‘ Agripinella’

A new Japanese Iris for us this year is this four-foot tall specimen from Plant Delights.

Iris ensata 'Flashing Koi'

Iris ensata ‘Flashing Koi’

The Blackout Lillies are creating their normal smashing display of vibrant dark red.

Lilium 'Blackout'

Lilium ‘Blackout’

And in anticipation of setting a new height record for us the Trumpet Hybrid Pink Perfection is now higher than the 8 foot piece of granite in our Monument Bed.

Pink Perfection Lily next to Monument

Pink Perfection Lily next to Monument

Our potted lily wanna-be from the Amazon is in full flower at the moment.

Hymenocallis 'Sulphur Queen'

Hymenocallis ‘Sulphur Queen’

I need to single out the last of the Arisaemas now in fully display. Both A. fargesii and A. candidssum took until June 4th before they showed their first pointed tips coming out of the soil.  I especially love the pink of the A. candidissums.

Arisaema candidissimum

Arisaema candidissimum

Arisaema fargesii

Arisaema fargesii

Just a few other shots from around the yard before I go…

Knockout roses 'Pink'

Knockout roses ‘Pink’

Asclepias tuberosa 'Hello Yellow'

Asclepias tuberosa ‘Hello Yellow’

Mix of wine cups, spotted orchid, Brodiaea 'Queen Fabiola', and Gladiolus elata.

Mix of wine cups, spotted orchid, Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’, and Gladiolus alatus.

Dactylorhiza fuchsii

Dactylorhiza fuchsii

Stewartia japonica

Stewartia japonica

Bulbine frutescens

Bulbine frutescens

Raspberries

Raspberries

Blueberries

Blueberries

And let me close with another gem from the greenhouse…

Habranthus tubispathus

Habranthus tubispathus (sometimes called copper lily)

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day May 2016

Clematis 'Niobe'

Clematis ‘Niobe’

Ok, it’s Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day for May and I’m already late (again).  Everything is flowering (or so it seems).  The peonies, iris, azaleas, rhododendrons, alliums, and so on.  Let me share some of the main headliners and then get to some of the more unusual flowers.

Rhododendrons are represented by three of our standards.  First the ultra-reliable R. chionoides which spends more and more of its time lying on the ground with various prostrate branches.

Rhododendron chionoides

Rhododendron chionoides

Then a scintillating pink that we have mixed into our camellia bed.

Camellia Garden Rhododendron

Camellia Garden Rhododendron

And I always have to share one of my favorites, R. ‘Viscosepala’, which has a magnificent fragrance.

Rhododendron 'Viscosepala'

Rhododendron ‘Viscosepala’

This was the happy result of crossing R. molle and R. viscosum in 1844 at the famous Waterer nursery at Knaphill in England.  I think it deserves more recognition.  You can sit on the deck in the evening and smell this honeysuckle-like fragrance surrounding you.

The peonies always go through a progression of tree peonies to species to Itoh hyrids to herbaceous.  The tree peonies and species types are just finishing now after serveral weeks of simply splendid flowers.

Tree peony just finishing

Tree peony just finishing

And the Itoh hybrids are lovely to look at right now.

Itoh Peony 'Morning Lilac'

Itoh Peony ‘Morning Lilac’

The unopened bud of the Itoh hybrid ‘Sequestered Sunshine’ looks like a giant rose.

Itoh Peony 'Sequestered Sunshine' opening a bud like a giant rose.

Itoh Peony ‘Sequestered Sunshine’

The first large bearded Iris are in bloom now and I just noticed a number of flowers on the Japanese Roof Iris yesterday.

Japanese Roof Iris (Iris tectorum)

Japanese Roof Iris (Iris tectorum)

Now let’s explore some of the less common flowers around the yard.

The Lamium orvala never fails to elicit comments when I point out the orchid-like flowers hidden under its leaves.

Lamium orvala

Lamium orvala

In one of the shade beds I see that one instance of the Rue Anemone has semi-double flowers that also seem to be bigger than its relatives.

Semi-double white Rue Anemone (Anemonella thalictroides)

Semi-double white Rue Anemone (Anemonella thalictroides)

In the front bed my planting of Dianthus spiculifolius in the large tufa rock seems to have taken hold.

Dianthus spiculifolius

Dianthus spiculifolius

Also in the front yard I had planted a Snow Poppy several years ago.  It has spread but I had never seen it flower.  Until this year.

Eomecon chionantha

Eomecon chionantha

The Snow Poppies are in a shady area near where the Woods Poppies (Stylophorum diphyllum) have long since taken over, and where the large Japanese Maple limits the sun and moisture in the summer time.  I’m happy to have them spread at a reasonable pace.

Snow poppy colony

Snow poppy colony (the curly leaves are the Woods Poppy mixed in)

At the GreenSprings Garden Plant Sale on Saturday I picked up a very nice little Calanthe hybrid orchid for the monument bed.

Calanthe hybrid hardy orchid

Calanthe hybrid hardy orchid

As we walk back to the Alpine garden I discovered a little ornithogalum growing with the little alpines and I couldn’t imagine how it got there until I reread my bulb order from last year.  Ornitogalum exscapum is described as compact and flowering from the base and indeed that seems to be the case so far.

Ornithogalum exscapum

Ornithogalum exscapum

Nearby two of the Lewisia are in bloom.

Lewisia ‘Little Plum’ (Lewisia longipetala x cotyledon)

Lewisia ‘Little Plum’ (Lewisia longipetala x cotyledon)

Pygmy bitterroot (Lewisia pymaea)

Pygmy bitterroot (Lewisia pymaea)

And in the trough in front of the greenhouse one of my favorite campanula relatives  is just coming into flower.

Edraianthus pumilio

Edraianthus pumilio

This makes a compact little cushion that is a wonderful example of why I like growing alpines.  That’s a little Dianthus alpina that is showing nearby.

And in the Greenhouse I was delighted to discover last week that two of the three rare Scillas that I planted last January are starting to grow.

Scilla madeirensis in leaf

Scilla madeirensis in leaf

These are very beautiful plants and I’m hoping to see flowers before they go dormant for the summer.

Let me close with an Iris relative, Gelasine elongata, also growing in the greenhouse.

Gelasine elongata

Gelasine elongata

This flowers at the end of a 2 ft. long stalk.  It is said to be marginally hardy here so I may give it a try outside.

Seed Tales

Labeled Tulipa sprengeri, (Zephyranthes dicrhomata?)

Labeled Tulipa sprengeri, (Zephyranthes dicrhomata?)

I was pleased to see a bud coming out of my planting of Tulipa sprengeri this past week.  But what emerged is very likely Zephyranthes dichromata.  That’s pretty much par for the course on starting some of these unusual plants from seed.  You can wait years for a seedling to emerge and then discover that it was either a mislabeled package or some friendly neighboring pot contributed some viable seed.  It’s likely that the Zephyranthes jumped from a neighboring pot because they do seed freely.  But then there are the successful outcomes like the big Paradisea that is just finishing in the greenhouse right now.

Paradisea lusitanica

Paradisea lusitanica

This is a beautiful lily-like plant more than 2 feet high that came from seed distributed by the Pacific Bulb Society in the spring of 2013. It grows wild in the mountains of Portugal and might be barely hardy here.  Another successful seed sowing from the PBS in 2013 was Dichelostemma multiflorum which grows wild in California.

Dichelostemma multiflorum

Dichelostemma multiflorum

I’ve planted a lot of seeds over the past few years and managed to lose of lot of my seedlings last year when the water timer failed while we were on vacation.  I’ve kept all those pots just in case, but decided last week to go through the hundreds of pots and reclaim the soil and pots.

Hundreds of pots to be reclaimed

Hundreds of pots to be reclaimed

I was delighted to find that some of those pots had seedlings just starting.

Brimeura amethystina seedling

Brimeura amethystina seedling starting 3 years later

 

Fritillaria meleagris seedling

Fritillaria meleagris seedling

This all serves as a reminder that you have to patient to allow good things to happen.  Another sort of patience comes with waiting for the first flowers.  Four years ago I bought a tiny little seedling of Paeonia rockii from Wrightman Alpines.  It has taken until this year to produce it’s first flowers.  I think you will agree that it was worth the wait.

Paeonia rockii

Paeonia rockii

Another delightful species Peony that is flowering right now was obtained from Plant Delights

Paeonia obovata ssp. obovata var. willmottiae

Paeonia obovata ssp. obovata var. willmottiae

So returning to topic of planting seeds I should note that many of the seeds come up in abundance.  They are often very cute as they so immediately resemble the plants that they will eventually become.

Draba parnassica

Draba parnassica

 

Antennaria rosea ssp pulvinata seedlings

Antennaria rosea ssp pulvinata seedlings

 

Phyteuma scheuchzeri seedlings

Phyteuma scheuchzeri seedlings (BotanyCa)

 

Silene acaulis seedlings

Silene acaulis seedlings

 

Gentiana dahurica seedlings

Gentiana dahurica seedlings (BotanyCa)

Altogether, looking at the three alpine seed exchanges that I participate in, the results are just short of 50% of the seeds successfully started so far.  In other words, so far, so good.

The other part of the seed topic is collecting the ones that are appearing right now.  Many of the spring ephemerals are putting out seeds in quantity now.

Eranthis hyemalis 'Schwefelglanz' seeds

Eranthis hyemalis ‘Schwefelglanz’ seeds

 

Hepatica seeds

Hepatica seeds

Often the spring emphemerals have elaiosomes on the seeds that make them attractive to ants.  So there is a brief 3-5 day window when you can just knock off the seeds to collect them.  Otherwise, if they fall, the ants will gather them up and take them home for planting.

Ant carrying Hepatica seed

Ant carrying Hepatica seed

And, of course, every seed is not only a potential new plant, but also acts as currency if you are involved in seed exchanges.

Let me close with a few more of the flowers that have bloomed over the past two weeks.

Tulipa humilis 'Alba Caerulea Oculata'

Tulipa humilis ‘Alba Caerulea Oculata’

 

Corydalis turtschaninovii 'Eric the Red'

Corydalis turtschaninovii ‘Eric the Red’

 

Borage

Borage

And lastly a beautiful new Allium from Odyssey Bulbs

Allium (nectaroscordum) tripedale

Allium (nectaroscordum) tripedale

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day April 2016

Panorama of Front Yard

Panorama of Front Yard

Well for this Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day there is no difficulty with finding things in flower.  April is a fantastic time for a Maryland gardener.  Just a few days ago we were assessing the damage from killing frosts (Toad lilies and the asian Disporum are surprisingly vulnerable), but right now we are relishing the blooms.  Daffodils and Tulips headline the show.  For example, there is this new addition to the woods.

Narcissus 'Precocious'

Narcissus ‘Precocious’

And old favorites in the front bed.

Tulipa 'Monte Carlo'

Tulipa ‘Monte Carlo’

A naturalized tulip for woodland areas.

Tulipa sylvestris

Tulipa sylvestris

And this new addition from Odyssey Bulbs last year.

Tulipa 'Goldmine'

Tulipa ‘Goldmine’

But the various smaller plants always capture my attention.

Erythroniums are at their peak right now.

Erythronium 'Pagoda'

Erythronium ‘Pagoda’

Erythronium multiscapideum

Erythronium multiscapideum

Erythronium dens-canis 'White Splendor'

Erythronium dens-canis ‘White Splendor’

Close by is a new Scilla relative that we added this past year (also from Odyssey Bulbs).

Fessia hohenackeri

Fessia hohenackeri

Note the lovely blue anthers.

There are also the epimediums, seemingly delicate plants that are oh-so-hardy.

Flowers on Epimedium grandiflorum 'Lilac Seedling'

Flowers on Epimedium grandiflorum ‘Lilac Seedling’

In this case the leaves are as special as the flowers.

Leaves on Epimedium grandiflorum 'Lilac Seedling'

Leaves on Epimedium grandiflorum ‘Lilac Seedling’

An aquilegia that my eldest son grew from a Scottish Rock Garden Society seed distribution begs for attention right now (very dwarf).

Aquilegia flabellata 'Nana'

Aquilegia flabellata ‘Nana’

And there is a Muscari that I got from Brent and becky last year that is growing in very difficult place between maple roots and an American Holly.

Muscari latifolium

Muscari latifolium

In the camellia bed we find a lovely little corydalis that has lasted for several season now (hard to do with the blue ones).

Corydalis turtschaninovii 'Eric The Red'

Corydalis turtschaninovii ‘Eric The Red’

The name comes from the leaves, not the flowers.

Nearby is one of my favorite trilliums.

Trillium 'Roadrunner'

Trillium ‘Roadrunner’

Also in the Camellia bed is one of the tiniest Hepaticas I have seen, the result of several seedlings I planted from Hillside Nursery.

Hepatica japonica  seedling

Hepatica japonica seedling

The Alpine bed features a very nice Daphne, that has all the fragrance that you expect from a Daphne.

Daphne collina x cneorum

Daphne collina x cneorum

And in small trough #2, there is the most beautiful little phlox that is doing alll that you expect from a phlox.

Phlox sileniflora

Phlox sileniflora

And from the greenhouse there are a couple of plants that have come into the house recently.

Hippeastrum striata

Hippeastrum striata

This small Amaryllis-want-to-be is also called the Barbados Striped Lily though it is actually from Brazil and it is multiplying in it’s small pot like mad.

And a south african plant originally purchased from Annie’s Annuals.

Ixia 'Buttercup'

Ixia ‘Buttercup’

This is at the tip of two-foot long stalks this year.

Finally, I should mention the various flowering trees.  This is right now the peak of the crossover between the various fruit trees, crabapples and cherries, giving way to the dogwoods.

Crabapple (variety long forgotten)

Crabapple (variety long forgotten)

The apple trees in the orchard are in the midst of one of the finest bloom cycles I have seen.

Mutsu Apple covered with blossoms

Mutsu Apple covered with blossoms

These are the highlights on Ball Rd.  What is growing in your garden?

Something Special

Lachenalia contaminata

Lachenalia contaminata

In my last posting Jessica of Rusty Duck asked about the fragrance of a Freesia I had posted.  The question made me check not only the fragrance of that flower (it had a hint of fragrance) but also to check the scent of a number of other flowers that are flowering right now.  I realized that in many cases I had been presuming that I knew the fragrance of a flower merely because I had checked on the scent emanating from other flowers in that genus.  I should have known better.  I’ve been growing a number of Lachenalias.  Partly because the seeds were readily available through the PBS bulb exchange and I love exploring with new plants.  And then they multiplied like little horticultural rabbits.  One of the biggest flowered of the Lachenalia that I have also has an amazing fragrance, which I had totally missed until now.  Think baby powder.  Very sweet smell.  This particular Lachenalia got its species name from the red dots that ‘contaminate’ the stems.  Actually it just makes them more interesting.

Lachenalia contaminata

Lachenalia contaminata

This is what the Lachenalia corner of the greenhouse looks like right now.

Lachenalias in the greenhouse, L. contaminata in center and left, L. splendida on right

Lachenalias in the greenhouse, L. contaminata in center and left, L. splendida on right

Here’s a closeup of of the Lachenalia splendida.  No scent but quite pretty in its own right.

Lachenalia splendida

Lachenalia splendida

Also in flower right now is a a Geissorhiza which I don’t think I’ve shared until now.  It has a number of pretty mauve flowers on each stem, much like a small Freesia.

Geissorhiza inaequalis

Geissorhiza inaequalis

And let me close, before returning to the garden to get some of those rapidly growing weeds, with another shot of the Spiloxene in the greenhouse.

Spiloxene capensis

Spiloxene capensis

It’s another South African native, also called the Peacock Flower for it’s colorfully marked star-like flowers.