Occasional Daily Photo 9/3/11

Asteeelia, you’re breaking my heart…

But only because you’re so constantly, shimmeringly gorgeous. Ever-gorgeous is what you are. Allow me to sing your praises.


This large pot of Astelia chathamica ‘Silver Spear’ has sat in the center of the back border on a large paver the entire summer. (Surrounded by kniphofias in the border that didn’t bloom much.) That’s gotta be a record for a garden where containers are moved probably weekly, whether to chase evolving light patterns or just change things up to indulge the gardener’s short attention span. But this astelia has never faltered or become shabby, and there was never any question of replacing it with something else. What could follow such perfection? It seems to improve the more crowded it grows in the pot and is far easier to keep in a container than, say, a phormium. Too deep in the border to hand water, I’ve been shooting a jet from the hose at it all summer, and that’s about all the attention it’s had. Dappled sun. Yesterday I grabbed that space under the pot and paver to plant some foxglove, Digitalis ferruginea, for next year, so finally hauled the pot and paver out. It’s past time to give this beauty its due as the Occasional Daily Photo this Labor Day Weekend. (Jubilation!) Astelia makes holding the center look easy. San Marcos has it hardy to 20-25 F.


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6 Responses to Occasional Daily Photo 9/3/11

  1. ks says:

    I’m for anything that can hide in the back and not be devoured by snails ..what great color that guy is !

  2. Denise says:

    Kathy, there’s all those plants limping through summer, and then there’s astelia, that looks even better at the end of summer…

  3. Grace says:

    Looks fabulous, Denise. Perfect with that trailing plant.

  4. Breaking my heart indeed…I love this plant but as you note it isn’t hardy up here in the PNW, so I too enjoy mine in containers too!

  5. hb says:

    I killed mine, and so resent its shimmering beauty. Time to try again?

  6. Denise says:

    Grace, I was worried the silver ponyfoot might be overkill, so I appreciate the input!
    Loree, I’m thinking astelia does as well in a container as in the ground.
    Hoov, see comment above! I’ve never had an astelia grow this large and happy before. They sulk in my clay.

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