Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - July 2016

July 15th has arrived, and that means it's time for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Though the garden when viewed as a whole doesn't appear particularly floriferous, once you take a closer look there are blooms everywhere. So many, that I've edited out a few, and this is still a very long post.

Blooming but not shown:
Calceolaria integrifolia 'Kentish Hero'
Calceolaria arachnoidea
Fabiana imbricata 'Violacea' (only a couple blooms, it's a baby)
Alchemilla alpina
Assorted Calluna vulgaris (not quite open, but buds showing everywhere, very early this year)
Iris domestica 'Gone With the Wind' (not quite open, maybe tomorrow)
Iris x norrisii Kiba Giant strain (ditto)
Geranium harveyi and G. robustum
Lily (yellow-orange, no ID)
Echinacea purpurea 'Magnus'
Hosta 'The Shining' (within the next two days, probably)
Daphne x transatlantica 'Blafra' (Eternal Fragrance) (hell, this one's always blooming)
Daphne x transatlantica 'Summer Ice' (same)
Assorted lavenders
Cistus 'Snow Fire' (a bloom here and there)
Crinodendron hookerianum
Crocosmia 'Lucifer'
Lobelia laxiflora var. angustifolia
Astrantia major (some red cultivar)
Diervillea rivularis 'SMNDRSF' (Kodiak® Black)
Abutilon megapotamicum
Lithodora diffusa (a flower here and there)
Mitraria coccinea
Marrubium supinum
Grevillea victoriae 'UBC', 'Marshall Olbricht', and 'Murray Valley Queen' (all in various stages of bud, but none open yet)
Grevillea 'Poorinda Leane' (lots of buds and a few fading flowers, not very photogenic at the moment)
Cryptanthus lacerdae 'Menescal' (standard white cryptanthus flowers, more exciting because of all the pups!)

I was hoping to include a picture of my Lilium formosanum var. pricei, which I showed in bud in an earlier post. Sadly, something chewed the bud off, so no bloom photo this year, I'm afraid. It had to be the plant that had ONE flower bud, didn't it?

And there are almost certainly a few things I'm forgetting, but you get the idea. Lots of flowers. Lots and lots of flowers. So, on to the pictures then!

Starting out indoors, Chirita 'Patina', an African violet relative, is proving to be a better bloomer than I anticipated. I mostly purchased it for the foliage, but it's been pumping out flowers for about a month, now. I should have taken a picture of it during the peak of this wave, but this gives you an idea of what the flowers look like.

Paphiopedilum Macabre is still blooming. I've lost track of how many months these flowers have been open.

Hoya 'Minibell' has several umbels open at the moment, the only one of my hoyas currently in bloom, mostly because I cut back my Hoya multiflora in yet another attempt to force it to branch.

Phalaenopsis Rong Guan Mary never seems to stop blooming, unless I do something dumb like accidentally break the bloom spike.

If I'd had more foresight, I might have cleaned off the dead blooms from this Porphyrocoma pohliana inflorescence before photographing it.

Columnea 'Janella' is finally gaining some size. This is the first of many blooms that will be opening in the coming weeks.

Streptocarpus 'Bristol's Water Bug' is loaded with blooms.

Rhododendron 'Littlest Angel', one of my tropical vireya rhododendrons, bloomed for the first time. The flowers have been open for several weeks now, and are just starting to fade. They drip great big fat drops of gooey nectar.

Also soon to bloom for the first time is this vireya I grew from a very tiny seedling. It was less than an inch tall when I got it, oh, about 3 years ago I think. Now it's almost 2 feet tall and has about 7 buds. It was a freebie sent along with an order, found along with two other seedlings under a plant labelled Rhododendron wentianum. I think I lost one of the seedlings to some kind of stress, and I discarded the other one because it was always chlorotic and had distorted growth. This is the last survivor. I can't wait to see the blooms!

Salvia forskaohlei, always a joy in bloom, even if it is a bit weedy.

 Common Achillea millefolium, looking lovely poking up through the foliage of Rhododendron 'PJM'.

An oddball Iris tenax blooming extremely late. Most of the others are already dropping their seeds.

More early blooms: Aster x frikartii 'Monch' is starting to bloom already! If I could grow one aster, this would be it. Oh wait, I do only grow one aster!

Salvia nemorosa 'Ostfriesland' poking up through a pool of Carex comans. The salvia is almost finished with its first wave of blooms. I should cut them back now for another flush before fall.

The dainty flowering stems of Origanum dictamnus.

Penstemon heterophyllus 'Electric Blue' pokes up through Origanum 'Kent Beauty' and lime thyme.

One of the Erysimum seedlings I planted last fall is starting to bloom.

This Parahebe perfoliata decided to bloom now, weeks after all the others.

 Eryngium agavifolium.

Kniphofia, from some seed strain I don't remember the name of.

Jovibarba heuffelii 'Angel Wings'

Mimulus cardinalis in the evening light. This, the Origanum 'Kent Beauty' and the lime thyme are probably the flowers making the biggest visual impact on the garden, right now.

 Fuchsia 'Pat's Dream'

Hydrangea quercifolia 'Snow Queen'. I had four of these, all salvage plants. Unfortunately, only one made it. I love it so much, I'm going to have to get replacements for the others.

My Clethra barbinervis from Dan Hinkley is blooming for the first time! And it smells absolutely divine! It's just starting to open. The second C. barbinervis I got from Kate Bryant is close behind, with even more blooms.

Black mondo grass has beautiful flowers.

Fuchsia 'Delta Sarah'

Cyclamen purpurascens, in danger of being swallowed by Prunella vulgaris. This is one of those situations I alluded to with the prunella. Great ground cover around larger plants. Not so great around little treasures.

Fuchsia magellanica 'Aurea'. It will be wonderful when all these fuchsias have been in the ground for a few years and really put on a show.

White calla lilies.

 The Daboecia cantabrica I transplanted last year are starting to come into bloom. They would have been blooming basically since the end of winter, but I cut them back to make the straggly divisions fill out. They seem to be doing well in their new homes.

 Alstroemeria 'Glory of the Andes', planted out last fall from a 1-gal. container, now forming a patch over 3 feet wide. What have I done?

But they're so pretty! I'll just have to carefully dig all the tubers out of the radioactive soil in this bed and plant them somewhere a bit more challenging.

 Nigella damascena, opening white and aging to a pinkish purple. This must be one of the offspring from the packet of seed I got from Alison.

Yucca filamentosa in the evening light. They started spiking very early this year, but then cooler weather slowed them down to where they're only slightly earlier than usual. The cooler nights at my higher elevation and away from the city have mine blooming well after the ones in Portland.

Fireweed! Yes, it's a weed, but it's pretty and good for various wildlife, so I don't mind that some of it volunteered here.

Penstemon pinifolius is still spitting out a few blooms, though the main show is past.

My Dyckia choristaminea bloomed this year and I didn't get a picture until it was on its last two flowers! Here they are. Cute little things, aren't they?

Double orange daylily

The first bloom on my new Abutilon megapotamicum 'Red'.

 Eschscholzia californica 'Mikado' is another flower making a wider impact than most in my garden. You can can actually see it here and there from afar, rather than just close-up like most of these flowers. Still not nearly as many as there should have been from all the seed I sowed, but I'll take what I can get. My favorites are the ones with orange petals brushed red on the outside.

The solid red ones are nice, too.

Yes, I got a little carried away with the poppy pictures, shown here with a little Phacelia campanularia. The phacelia are looking a little tired around the garden, now, but they're still blooming.

Another nigella, with a Liatris spicata almost open.

I had almost forgotten that I sowed these seeds. Collomia grandiflora, one of my favorite native wildflowers. Just starting to open in my garden. I first saw these in the Columbia River Gorge and have wanted them ever since.

Gilia capitata was included in the meadow mix I sowed earlier this year. I do like the flowers, but I wish the plants weren't so tall. Many of them are almost three feet tall. Too close to tall meadow for my liking, though they do look better after I clear out the tall coreopsis that was substituted into the WESTERN NATIVE seed mix for something the seed company switched out. Why would you throw a midwestern prairie species into a northwest native seed mix? Why not substitute in a different NATIVE? I got more damn coreopsis than anything else out of that mix, and it's exactly the kind of tall, blousy meadow look I didn't want. (Sorry, mini-rant.) The gilia does look nice spotted here and there, a tall spike punctuating lower plants. In one bed, it came up very thickly, though, and just looks like a solid stand, swamping smaller plants. Hopefully future generations will be shorter, as the compost covering the beds breaks down and conditions become leaner.

Nemophila menziesii flowers, another native I've wanted for years.

An orange-yellow cultivar of Dasiphora fruticosa. I need to get more of these. So tough, easy, and attractive.

Trachelium caeruleum 'Hamer Pandora' has been teasing me for weeks. The first flowers opened today.

Leptospermum lanigerum silver weeping form, from Cistus.

Molinia caerulea 'Variegata', or purple moor grass. I've grown this grass for almost 10 years now, and this is the first time I've really appreciated the common name, purple moor grass. The anthers really are dark purple! I knew they were, but they seem more intense this year.

 My first California fuchsia blooms. This one is Schieffelin's Choice. I need a lot more of these, especially for those larger areas I'm working on.

Sedum oreganum. It's so nice having this beautiful, full patch of sedum and not having to worry about the deer demolishing it in the dry summer.

The same goes for Sedum album. It's never looked this good!

One last shot of 'Kent Beauty' oregano and 'Mikado' California poppies. As you can see, I don't really subscribe to that whole "never combine orange and pink" nonsense.

If you made it this far, thanks for slogging through all those pictures! The alternate title for this post is "Oops, I (over) did it again."


  1. Oh my gosh, Evan! SOOO GORGEOUS. Wow. We need to talk. OK, all those "native" wildflower seeds - bummer about the Coreopsis. I hope I didn't get that batch, too...we'll see. The California poppies - I thought I was doing something wrong with those...I've sowed them four or five times in the past and had nothing. Those Hydrangea 'Snow Queen' we have at Joy you want me to save a few for you? have such an amazing collection. Impressive.

    1. Thanks, Tamara! You should come see the garden in person, sometime, though. It's not nearly as nice as the close-up photos would lead you to believe. Interesting about the California poppies. Mine did have problems in the composted bark mix I topped a lot of beds with. They were more successful in the native soil or where the finer particles in the compost mix had accumulated. Oh, yes! Please do save a few of those hydrangeas for me!

  2. You do have a ridiculous number of blooms! And so many of them are unfamiliar to me, though I didn't know there was a name change on the (former?) Potentilla fruiticosa. I have high hopes for my Penstemon pinifolius to be that big and bloomy. Great post!!

    1. That shrubby cinquefoil has had way too many name changes. Potentilla fruticosa, Dasiphora floribunda, Dasiphora fruticosa, and a few in between.

  3. When I first started gardening here, I planted lots of western wildflowers like Nemophila. Then for some crazy reason I decided to change that bed around and pulled them all out. Now I'm sooooo very sorry I did that. I want them back. Dumb move on my part. I need to sow those seeds again. I'm glad to see some of the Nigella sprouted for you. I hope you get some interesting colors.

    1. We have some wonderful native wildflowers in the PNW. I'm so happy to have added more this year. I hope you can work them back into your garden. I've had some nice colors from those seeds you gave me. Some that looked almost like tie dye!

  4. You must celebrate that deer fence anew every Bloom Day! You have such wonderful diversity in your collection and your California poppies are far more profuse than mine (now largely gone). Seeing your indoor blooms makes me wonder why I don't have more of those - Streptocarpus plants were among the first I ever collected (back in high school) but I haven't grown one in a long, long time.

    1. I celebrate the deer fence anew every time I walk around the garden, or even look out the window at all the plants I can grow now. But now the rabbits are starting to become a bit of a nuisance. Minor at this point. If they multiply too much, though, I'll have to figure something out. No matter how many plants I have outside, I always have to have my indoor plants, too.

  5. Mmmm...that last photos should put the lie to never combining pink and orange. I'm actually striving for it but with similar results to yours with the Calif. poppies. I'm hoping they will multiply as the seed heads form the ones that did take burst and scatter. It would be hard to OD on photos as far as I'm concerned.

    1. I'm of the same mind with the Calif. poppies. I'm hoping the self-sown seeds from the plants that have come up will be more successful than my hand-sowing.

    2. That has been my experience with California poppies. The second year, I had much better success with the ones that came from plants that self-sowed, than I did from the seeds I scattered initially.

  6. Wow, Parahebe perfoliata blooming in July? What kind of crazy place are you calling home? My Alstroemeria seems to be taking this year off, a fact that makes me very sad. Your pesky plant looks gorgeous.

    1. I know, right? Weird parahebe. But it's not like it's the strangest thing around here. That would be me. I hope your Alstroemeria makes up for it next year with a double dose of blooms.

  7. SO many great flowers and plants!

  8. Your alternate title cracked me up. The truth is, I expect nothing less :-D Keep it coming!
    You have late blooming Iris, and early blooming Aster. My white calla lily is long done blooming. Its an odd summer we are having, confusing our gardens. Good luck with the Alstroemeria. I left mine alone for a couple of years to enjoy their gorgeous orange blooms. I wish I hadn't.

    1. My calla isn't like the typical Zantedeschia aethiopica that most people have, with the plain green leaves. It's a hybrid with white spots on the leaves and blooms later. It also doesn't bloom all that well, at least not in my garden. I think this is it's last year. Yes, I need to dig up that soon as it's done blooming.

  9. Love the gray foliage featured today. I used a lot of Artemisia for a few years. 'Powis Castle' seems to have disappeared so this spring I treated myself to a couple and put them in pots. I
    ll try to send a photo. Another plant you would probably love is Gazania; gray foliage w.beautiful color flowers. Great post. Thanks.

    1. Hm, I think this comment was meant for my foliage follow-up post, but ah well. 'Powis Castle' is one I've been wanting to try, and I'm finally developing a space large enough for it to spread. Unfortunately, most gazanias aren't hardy in my climate, though I do want to try Gazania krebsiana.


Post a Comment

Popular Posts