Monthly Archives: April 2015

2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – J – Japanese Iris

Many of the plants in our landscape pattern are perennials, simply due to the low maintenance nature of such. Don’t get me wrong, I love many annuals as well, due to their vibrant colors. Perennials just take care of themselves and many will include seed pods that give you the opportunity to propogate or make more plants.

The Japanese Iris is such a candidate in our landscape collection. My mother began with this years ago and the current ones we have come from separating her ever-growing collection. This particular iris produces seed pods that have an abundance of seeds that fall out of the pods when they ripen and you have even more plants the following year.

As with all perennials you can take a spade or shovel and divide the plants, relocating them to other places to spread the wealth.

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2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – L – Lilies

To say I am partial to lilies is a supreme understatement. I love every kind. I have some Asiatic ones that I transplanted from my parents yard as well as some day lilies we bought to add to our beds.  These were the best choice as my offering to the weekly floral photography invitational I joined last week. it is called the Floral Friday Fotos.

This is a blackberry lily.

This is a blackberry lily.

The Asiatic I transferred from my home place.

The Asiatic I transferred from my home place.

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One of the many Calla Lilies we have planted with our Dahlias.

One of the many Calla Lilies we have planted with our Dahlias.

 

2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – I – Ipomea

Everyone knows there are plenty of heroes. Batman, The Lone Ranger, Don Quixote to mention a few. But each of these heroes have a sidekick that makes them look good. I mean we all know about Robin, Tonto and Sancho Panza. They are the ones who help make the hero a hero.

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Ipomea is just like that in the plant world. While it has the color and texture to be a star it is usually paired with plants that have much more star power. I used Ipomea in a variety of combination plantings during my time as a greenhouse owner.

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Ipomea is a sweet potato plant actually. But the type used in the greenhouse setting is more of an ornamental type, not the one that will deliver you sweet potatoes for edible consumption. You will see these plants in a lot of ground cover opportunities as the Ipomea is prolific and spreads very well.

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2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – H – Hosta

Eight days into the A to Z and I am getting excited because many of my favorite plants are beginning to show signs of emergence as Spring grips my area. Among this list of favorites is my choice for H, the Hosta.  A Hosta is a predominantly foliage plant, although it will bloom at the appointed time in it’s life cycle.

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The Hosta does best in a shaded area, but at our home shade is a luxury. We have several Hostas, and they don’t fare as well when the temperature climbs into the 80s and 90s during the summer.

2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – G – Geraniums –

My Favorite Plant that starts with a G is a garden stalwart preferred by gardeners for generations. It is a type of plant that is not particularly showy in the beginning, but as it grows and develops the blooms are quite spectacular. When i owned my greenhouse we had several varieties of Geraniums. In fact when you get into the business you realize there are as many varieties as you can imagine.

Most plants have a base variety or color. But to broaden the potential for sales the breeders of the plants will experiment with the plants to try to create either a stronger or different color variant of the family. The most demanded color was a bright red. We chose these for a few years in our own window boxes.

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We tried white, salmon, pink and many other color combinations with varyin g degrees of success. Invariably red was the star of the Geranium family. However we did stumble across a different variant that quickly became out favorite and that of our customers. It was called a Confetti Geranium and every time it bloomed you got a different display.

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2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – F – Four O’Clock

If you have never heard of the family of plants I will share on day number 6 of the 2015 A to Z challenge, you may think I am pulling your leg. While I enjoy doing that I am not in this particular instance. If you seek some of that you might want to head over to my fiction site, the Fiction Playground, for some fun. But truly there is a group of plants that bloom at a particular time each day.

The first of this group I heard of was the Nine O’Clock plant. it blooms at nine p.m. every day. My aunt had one of these and I found it a fascinating idea. But let’s be honest, except at the height of summer when the day stretches out and the light lasts past nine at night you really won’t get much of a chance to enjoy this plant.

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These plants reward you with such a colorful display that is never the same. Due to the cross breeding within the plant you get a different bloom collection each time they bloom. I have been warned the plants can become invasive, but that has not been my experience. The plants produce seeds as they mature and the seeds can be collected and planted elsewhere for more plants the next season.

Although I do not have photos of them, some friends from my church have a variety that more resembles a shrub in size and this particular one does take up a large amount of space. They have placed this plant in a targeted area so that it is not an issue and i enjoy visiting and taking in the colorful display. I hope you enjoy my choice for Day 6.

2015 A to Z My Favorite Plants – E – Easter Lily

How timely is it that the subject for Day 5 of the 2015 A to Z challenge was the floral star all over the USA yesterday. Of course I am talking about the Easter Lily. We did not purchase one of these this year, but have many times in the past. When I consider the pantheon of spring flowers I do not necessarily consider the Easter Lily with them since it is such a short lived bloom.

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It is hard for me to try to think of a flower with a whiter bloom however. I saw a photo in my local paper yesterday that was obviously taken in a greenhouse somewhere with hundreds of these and it was an amazing shot. I hope you were able to enjoy one or more of these in your Easter journeys this weekend.