Friday, November 27, 2015

What Blooms in November?

Red Pansy Face in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Red Pansy Face in November
It's always interesting when planning a garden to know what blooms when. I'm gradually trying to show the photos of plants in bloom month by month in my neighborhood in Paso Robles, California. Our climate is fairly mild, but we do sometimes go below 20 degrees F. in winter. We get into the triple digits on some spring and summer days. This post will show you what's been blooming here in this month of November. The photo shows a pansy in bloom. Pansies add a lot of color in fall and winter, and sometimes last until spring.

Some plants that typically bloom in summer still have a few flowers left, along with some that dried on the plant. Here are a couple of those.

Lingering Butterfly Bush Flowers in November, , © B. Radisavljevic
Lingering Butterfly Bush Flowers in November

Lingering Hyssop Flowers in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Lingering Hyssop Flowers in November

Some of these flowers are really herb flowers and perform for many months. The hyssop above has been in bloom since June, but it had many more flowers then. The sages also bloom over a long period, as does the rosemary. I love rosemary in winter because you can cut it and bring it in for fragrant holiday greenery. It also helps the bees through the winter.

Cherry Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
One Variety of Cherry Sage, © B. Radisavljevic

Hot Lips Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
Hot Lips Sage

Rosemary in Bloom, © B. Radisavljevic
Rosemary in Bloom

Some flowers I depend upon to brighten my garden year round. One of these is calendula, which you see in bloom below.  To its left is Lamb's Ears, with its contrasting gray leaves. To its right, you see gazanias. Behind is star jasmine with the dark green leaves. It, like the Lamb's Ears, has stopped blooming, as has the browning remains of a Euphorbia plant (also known as gopher plant.), which has greenish-yellow flowers in summer.  The lighter green plant surrounding the dying Euphorbia is rue. It has never bloomed for me yet.

Calendula in Bloom, © B. Radisavljevic
Calendula in Bloom

Gazanias in Bloom, © B. Radisavljevic
Gazanias in Bloom

Some flowers just linger into winter.

Mums and Calendula, © B. Radisavljevic
Mums and Calendula

Miniature Chrysanthemums in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Miniature Chrysanthemums in November

Cecile Brunner Climbing Rose in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Cecile Brunner Climbing Rose in November

A Neighbor's Roses in November,  © B. Radisavljevic
A Neighbor's Roses in November

Gazanias, a Blooming Ground Cover, in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Gazanias, a Blooming Ground Cover, in November

Blue Pincushion Flowers (Scabiosa) in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Scabiosa (Pincushion Flowers) Hiding Between Hyssop
And Hollyhock Leaf in November

Jupiter's Beard,  © B. Radisavljevic
Jupiter's Beard in November. I was not able to identify this until
today, but it blooms for several months out of the year. I see it all
over town and I want some, even though it is invasive. 

These flowers belong to others and are blooming today on November 27, 2015. I'm not sure how long they have been blooming.

Mystery Plant belonging to My Neighbor,  © B. Radisavljevic
Mystery Plant belonging to My Neighbor. Click to enlarge and
see it more clearly. The pink flowers in the back are roses.
The blue is the back of a light.

Society Garlic in Bloom in November, Next to Browning Rose Plant, © B. Radisavljevic
Society Garlic in Bloom in November, Next to Browning Rose Plant
Click to enlarge. The flowers are small. Red roses are blooming
in back by the fence. 

Snapdragons in Bloom in November,  © B. Radisavljevic
Snapdragons in Bloom in November. Behind to the left are poppy
seedlings and to the right are young scabiosa plants.

I hope this helps you plan next year's garden or decide what you might want to transplant now for immediate color. Maybe a neighbor is even cleaning out plants she would be willing to share. Rosemary is easy to root in water. I had one plant in the back yard and roots three more plants for the front yard. It should be easy to find someone who will let out take a few cuttings. I just put it in water and it roots enough to plant within two or three weeks.

What are your favorite winter flowers? I somehow missed posting my photos of petunias and hibiscus that I've seen around the county, but I don't have any growing in my own yard now. I did have a petunia growing in November last year. I saw the hibiscus in Santa Maria in a planter at Trader Joe's.

Here are two more colorful shrubs that give you red berries for winter.

Holly Berries in November, © B. Radisavljevic
Holly Berries in November, © B. Radisavljevic

Pyracantha (Firethorn), © B. Radisavljevic
Pyracantha (Firethorn), © B. Radisavljevic

The cotoneaster shrub is similar in looks to the pyracantha, but has no thorns. I decided to make a blank greeting card out of one of the photos I took of cotoneaster.

Here's a matching postage stamp.

Related Links:
This Butterfly Bush Shows How Nature Adapts

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Flowers in Bloom in April in Paso Robles?

Light Purple Iris in Bloom in April, © B. RadisavljevicApril has brought a lot of flowers back in bloom. Almost everything that was blooming in March is still blooming, but many new plants are also beginning to flower. Among these are the irises. Besides this light purple iris, I've seen maroon, yellow, and other colors around the neighborhood. Browse Amazon for a wide selection of iris varieties.

All my sages and my French lavender are in full bloom except for the tricolor sage and the clary sage, which bloom later in early summer. I also found a new sage in bloom in the flower beds at the Donati Family tasting room in Templeton - a compact yellow Jerusalem sage.  Here are some of the sage and lavender photos. I was amazed at the wide variety of sage plants Amazon has.

French Lavender Behind Hollyhock, © B. Radisavljevic
French Lavender Behind Hollyhock

Bee on French Lavender, © B. Radisavljevic
Bee on French Lavender

Common Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
Common Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
Black Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
Black Sage, © B. Radisavljevic

Spanish Sage Surrounded by Jasmine and Lambs Ear, © B. Radisavljevic
Spanish Sage Surrounded by Jasmine and Lambs Ear, © B. Radisavljevic
Watermelon Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
Watermelon Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
 As you can see, hollyhock, a flower I've never tried to grow before, is in bloom. I planted it last year and had about given up on it ever growing. I almost confused the leaves with mallow and pulled the plants out, but I remembered I planted the hollyhock in these places and decided to be patient. I'm glad I waited.
Compact Jerusalem Sage, © B. Radisavljevic
Compact Jerusalem Sage, © B. Radisavljevic

My Neighbor's Flower Bed with Rose Trellis
I have also seen roses everywhere this month, though many were also blooming in March. I've always loved this garden of my neighbor's with its colorful rose trellis. She also has a multitude of  annuals below providing more color and showing some other flowers blooming this month. You can see her California golden poppies. irises, calendula, and those pinkish flowers to the right side I've never been able to identify. You may need to click the photo to enlarge it in order to see the detail. 

Windy City Miniature Rose
Below are some of my roses in bloom today at the end of April. The first,  to the left, is a Windy City miniature rose I bought a couple of years ago that does not require a lot of water. It is one of the taller miniature roses and can grow as tall as a yard high, maybe even higher. Like all roses, if you grow them without chemicals or sprays, the petals are edible. 

Below is a Cecile Brunner climbing rose. It will climb high and even climb your trees, and it can grow out of control if you don't keep it tamed with pruning. 

One of my very favorite roses is a tree rose that grows outside my kitchen window. I love its coral color.  Evidently, others also like this rose. I put it on a Zazzle "Thinking of You" greeting card, and it turned out to be a best seller. Maybe you would also like to have some. It's available as both a greeting card or note card and there are volume discounts if you buy ten or more cards, including other assorted designs. 

Butterfly on Gazanias, © B. Radisavljevic
Butterfly on Gazanias, © B. Radisavljevic

As almost always, gazanias are in bloom. It can be relied on for color almost all year. As you can see, this butterfly was also attracted to it. Gazanias are a wonderful ground cover and spread fast to make more plants.

Another plant that really spreads fast to fill in bare ground is lambs ears. The books say it's supposed to bloom in June or July, but it is beginning to bloom now,  and I expect there will be full flower spikes by May.

Lambs Ears Flowers Just Starting to Bloom at end of April, © B. Radisavljevic

Lambs ears have a wonderful soft
texture that almost feels woolly. Their very light greenish gray leaves provide a complementary background to almost anything darker and brighter, and its own pale purple flowers won't clash with anything, as you can see in the photo here.

Lambs Ears  around Sweet William at end of April, © B. Radisavljevic
In the photo to the left, you can see how the lambs ears act as a ground cover around the pink Sweet William flowers. It will spread to fill in any available space, and although some think of it as a weed, I prefer it to the weeds it smothers, and it's much easier to pull out if you want to use the space for something else. I started with just one plant several  years ago on my Templeton property and when the gophers attacked it, I potted it. Then I started one plant from that mother plant here in Paso Robles about ten years ago and it's now in every single front flower bed.

Yarrow in Bloom © B. Radisavljevic
One more plant I saw blooming this month around town is yarrow. A lot of businesses use it in their landscaping, often with roses or lavender, because it doesn't need much water. It's a lovely contrast to either lavender or sage. I plan to get some one of these days.

Although I haven't pictured them here, for lack of room, my light pink carnations are also blooming now. They started blooming at the end of February but are in full  bloom now. The darker ones aren't blooming yet.

This is just a sampling of what blooms in April. Many of these plants will bloom for many months. I like to keep photographic notes on what blooms when to help when I plan my gardens. That way I'll know when  to expect certain colors to arrive in my garden. In past years I've also had pansies blooming at this time, but I was physically unable to work in my garden when it was time to plant them this year. Remember, if you want a closer look at any photo, just click to enlarge it.

What's blooming in your garden this April?

Friday, March 13, 2015

Daffodils Fading, Irises Starting to Bloom

Emerging from Winter

Daffodil and Black Sage in mid-February, © B. Radisavljevic
It seems February went by in the garden so fast I didn't get around to posting about it. But most of what was blooming in February is still blooming in March. Since my two garden properties have limited space and I have limited time, when reporting on blooming, I will also report on what I see while out walking. Everything you see here was blooming during some part of February and /or  the first two weeks of March in either Paso Robles or Templeton, California.

Blooming Trees

Almond Blossoms, © B. Radisavljevic
In February, I always start looking for blooming almond trees. This blossom is on my own tree. It doesn't give me any almonds because it's old and we haven't known how to care for it properly. In the twenty years since we bought the property, it's never borne enough almonds to feed any but the squirrels. We inherited the orchard from the previous owner, but he did not care for the trees that were on the property when we bought it. 

Apricot Blossoms in March, © B. Radisavljevic
I was surprised and delighted to see today that my apricot tree was blooming in Templeton. It did not bloom last year. Must have been the rain. Three of our newer peach and nectarine trees are also in bloom, but I don't have room to picture all of them, and they are very small. 

Ornamental flowering trees can be seen all over town. The pink ones seem destined to produce small
Flowering Trees and Horses, © B. Radisavljevic

cherry-like plums, and the white ones are usually Bradford ornamental pears. You will see them all in a wall of blossoms at Barney Schwartz Park in Paso Robles. They are on the streets and in the parking lots. It seems all of Paso Robles is blooming. But the photo I want to show you of the blooming trees is this one I took on Union Road yesterday. I think they look good with horses under them. 

Flowers in Bloom

Many of my own flowers are in bloom, or have been at this time of year in past years. I will show them to you below. 

 © B. Radisavljevic
Daffodils with Black Sage in February, 2015

Carnation in March, 2015

Iris in March, © B. Radisavljevic
Iris in March, 2014.

Borage, © B. Radisavljevic
Borage in February and March

Cecile Brunner Climbing Rose, March, 2015, © B. Radisavljevic
Cecile Brunner Climbing Rose, March, 2015
California Poppies at Barney Schwartz Park, © B. Radisavljevic
California Poppies at Barney Schwartz Park, March, 2015

Shrubs Blooming in March

 Rosemary, Watermelon Sage, Holly, March 13, © B. Radisavljevic
Left to Right: Rosemary, Watermelon Sage, Holly, March 13

Rosemary blooms almost all year, and the bees love it. It's at its best now after the rain. The watermelon sage also started blooming this month. The holly still has berries from last year, but it is also flowering and budding for next year's berries. There were so many bees on the holly flowers I could hear them buzzing. That holly plant was like a bee airport. 

Holly with Flowers and Berries, © B. Radisavljevic
Holly with Flowers and Berries

This is a close-up of the holly plant. You can click it or any other photo for an enlarged view to see the details.

I'm not sure what this is. It was blooming at the Caliza Winery on March 8. It is very fragrant, but the leaves didn't look quite like lilacs. If anyone knows what it is, I'd love to know. I'd like to get some.

This is another mystery plant I found at Caliza. It has leaves like a rosemary, but it doesn't smell like rosemary. Please leave a comment if you know what it is.

Also blooming in the weed family are wild mustard, vetch, filaree, and henbit. The first and the last two are edible. We will discuss them next time.

What is blooming where you are in March? Be sure and let us know where that is in your comment so we'll know what blooms where, when.
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