Bloom Day November 2016

Daylight Saving Time and the electoral college. I think we can agree that these are two areas worthy of further study. May Dreams Gardens collects Bloom Day reports the 15th of every month. My excuse for posting on the 16th? The DST ate my report. I don’t know how you all manage with these shortened days.

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For November we’ll begin with N, for nerines, truly a miracle bulb. I get it that all bulbs are miraculous, but they are not, unlike my nerines, kill-proof. But go ahead and forget nerines in a dry bowl all summer long (like I do a lot of other plants, come to think of it).

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In the case of nerines, you will be rewarded, not punished. They require that dry summer dormancy. Think of nerines as bulbs that actually encourage bad behavior.

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Okay, nobody gets excited by the drab composite flowers of a senecio, but I do like how the blooms extend the leaf-stacked lines of the stems. And November is not a bad month for a shot of yellow. (Senecio medley-woodi)

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More November yellow from Tagetes lemmonnii, the Copper Canyon Daisy. What a great common name, right out of a John Ford western. Some plants get stuck with unfortunate names like “lungwort.” Maybe I’m weird (ya think?) but I actually like the smell of the leaves.

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Bocconia is sending forth those frothy bloom panicles. Acacia baileyana ‘Purpurea,’ the blue wash in the background, is also budded up with bloom. The acacia just underwent an intervention and had some Tanglefoot smeared around its trunk to stop the ants from massing cottony cushiony scale along its branches. As difficult as it is to imagine winners where climate change is concerned, there will be those who come out victorious, and I’m certain they will be bugs. Each one of those cottony, pillowy encrustations on my acacia holds over 600 eggs.

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I’m loving this tawny, oatsy look the garden has taken on in November. ‘Fairy Tails’ pennisetum in the foreground, oatsy-colored bloom trusses of tetrapanax in the background.

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One clump of melinus, the Ruby Grass, is still sending out rich-colored blooms. The other two clumps have only faded stalks. More oatsy theme.

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Once the grevilleas reach blooming size, look out. It’s just another ‘Moonlight’ mile, as far as continuity of blooms. It really does take on a lunar glow around sunrise.

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Grevillea ‘Robyn Gordon’ backed by the claret tones of ‘Hallelujah’ bilbergia. And since Dustin Gimbel burst into Mr. Cohen’s immortal song when he gave me these pups, that’s the gorgeous earworm I’m stuck with in their company. (I have to admit my earworm is sung by Jeff Buckley, though. I can’t help it — that’s where I heard the song first.)

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I don’t think I’ve given a shout-out to Plectranthus neochilus all summer. Ever stinky of leaf, but a sturdy friend to hummingbirds. The stump of the smoke tree ‘Grace,’ that improbably grew branches as thick and far-flung as a sycamore, still lies underneath. A little more decomposition of the stump, and I can dig it up and plant something more exciting. I know the hummers are going to hate me, though.

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And yet another entry in the category “Every Bloom Counts in November,” the little euphorbia that took containers by storm 5 or 6 years ago, now greeted mostly with yawns. Euphorbia ‘Diamond Frost’ is perennial here and doesn’t get into much trouble. Nothing eats it and hot, dry summers don’t faze it.

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Another view of it wrapping around the other side of the containers, with another survivor, a climbing kalanchoe. The euphorbia loves that root run between garden and bricks.

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Berkheya’s feeble attempt at a weak-necked bloom this November highlights why it’s equally appreciated for those great, serrated leaves.

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Aloe “Kujo’ is just about spent, but the red-tipped aloe to the left, cameronii, was discovered to have two buds still tucked in close to the leaves this morning. (Woot!) The other aloe to the right is allegedly elgonica. I’ve searched the blog and find no reference to a bloom yet.

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And the little passiflora ‘Flying V’ is still displaying all those fine qualities, unstoppable, indomitable, etc. this November, on the day after Bloom Day.

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13 Responses to Bloom Day November 2016

  1. Rachel says:

    In the second picture from the bottom, what kind of agave is that? Thanks!

  2. hb says:

    Good stuff. I like the Tagetes scent too, though it is nearly overpowering up close. Just a touch is plenty. Your Bocconia is lovely. The perfect companion to Diamond Frost–big Agaves?

    It is the pups who loathe DST/ST shifts here–it makes their breakfast and dinner late. Their tummies can tell time.

    Happy GBBD.

  3. Kris P says:

    That passionflower never ceases to amaze me with its beauty! I alternately laughed and groaned as I read through your post. I’m sorry to hear about the ant/scale problem and I hope you intervention does the trick. Like you and HB, I like the smell of Tagetes, although my husband detests it so I sneak in just a few stems, hoping he won’t notice. I adore Nerines and don’t know why I didn’t bring any with me when we moved 5+ years ago or why I haven’t remedied the omission before now but I have placed a bulb order so, hopefully, this will be my last Nerine-less year.

  4. ks says:

    I hate it when Bloomday is on a workday-though sometime I may get my act together and take photos the preceding weekend.I’m a big fan of E. ‘Diamond Frost’, though it is not hardy for me. Love that little Senecio too-I seem to be collecting them and now have yet more plants to bring into the house in winter. We finally dipped into the 30’s (very high 30’s) last night for the first time. The winter homes will be sorted out this weekend .

  5. Evan says:

    I know this is a garden blog, but I can’t help gushing over the quality of your photos. You’re a master of depth of field and composition. And the colors are amazing! May I ask if you use in-camera settings or post-processing to enhance them? The nerine flowers are gorgeous and I love the Bocconia with the acacia in the background. The Plectranthus neochilus flowers are beautiful. It’s a shame the foliage has a bad smell.

  6. Alison says:

    That’s such a pretty passionflower! Hmm, my Berkheya stalks always flop, even at the height of summer when they first flower. Thanks for sharing pics of your blooms.

  7. Ross says:

    gorgeous. better half put the moccas on the spot I had picked for Bocconia (she knows stuff) so your pics will have to do. Did not know nerines want summer drought…. explains a bit….. Your pics are sumptuous btw

  8. Denise says:

    @Rachel, that’s a form of Agave pygmaea called ‘Dragon Toes.’ It’s about 3X3 in size now, which seems to be bigger than grower projections, but it’s still a nice compact one.
    @Hoov, that tagetes is supposedly a compact form. I was surprised checking the blog how often it rotates through the garden.
    @Kris, ooh, you ordered some nerines? There are some amazing colors and forms. Mine were a gift from Matt Matthus who is such a connoisseur of cool plants. The sarniensis hybrids have that orangey cast to them like mine and are reputedly more tender — not a problem here. Can’t wait to see what you get!
    @Evan, I do a little bit of both and needed to brighten some of these since it was nearly predawn. So much I need to learn about photog, but I’ll take your compliments!
    @Alison, I’m pretty sure the berkheyas flowers stood up well all summer. I removed one of the clumps of Fairy Tails to get some more light in, and that’s when it threw these blooms.
    @Ross, I’ve always wondered what it would be like if two people worked the same garden — wow, hat’s off to you both!

  9. Lorinda says:

    Oooh, now I have another nerine to lust for. I’ve one with pink ruffly flowers for decades. Love that passion flower vine, too.

  10. Thanks for the report from Long Beach. I’ve been thinking of your Tetrapanax, every time I look and mine so valiantly trying to bloom. Oh and that Passiflora ‘Flying V’….love it.

  11. Max Parker says:

    Wow, glad to see that the Passiflora is doing so well and being admired by someone who can truly appreciate its beauty. I think I’m ready to take it back now 😉 It seems like it was just yesterday that I was feeling watching it languish in a 2″ pot on my windowsill. It’s always so gratifying to see the victims of my propagation madness find a warm(!!!) home. (Sidenote: the exclamation is in reference to the frost everywhere this morning… Southern California dreaming)

  12. Denise says:

    @Lorinda, I really need to get more too, and build a special shelf for them, so they don’t get lost in the shuffle, etc, etc,!
    @Loree, yes, Long Beach reporting in! So thankful for your daily blog posts.
    @Max, I owe it all to you! And now I’m thinking there’s gotta be other fabulous passifloras out there, so I’m on the hunt. Frost already?!!!

  13. Tim says:

    Like Evan, I always want to gush over your photos: Sumptuous. I do like to marvel at what you can grow outdoors; I came close to ordering Dragon-Toes this week, but the combination of realizing it might freeze on the way to Ohio, plus the fact that I have not found a home indoors yet for everything that needed to come inside, stopped me. Most things are staged in crowded mud room, waiting for their winter home. (Unfortunately I had no rational thought descend upon me to prevent the ordering of a varied collection of Arisaema….)
    It’s taken me a while to warm to Grevilleas, but your elegant, cream-colored, luminescent ‘Moonlight’ has me reaching for the thesaurus for more superlatives.

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