Foliage Follow-up March 2017

The sixteenth day of the month marks Foliage Follow-up, hosted by Pam Penick at Digging to celebrate foliage in the garden. I was thinking I'd be a bit stuck for new foliage to show just yet, as most of the evergreen foliage worth showing has already been shown over the last few months. I have a lot of evergreens in my garden. I'm sure I do. It's just that most of them are small and not very photogenic yet.

As luck would have it, though, the warm weather we've (finally) been having the last few days has brought out a bit of new growth, so today I'm celebrating the first new shoots of spring, calendar be damned. Fair warning. I may have gotten a teensy bit carried away. After the winter we've had, new growth is even more exciting than usual.

Today was gorgeously sunny, a welcome respite from the rain. I went out to take photos and then spent several hours weeding and doing a bit of pruning, not getting back in to process the photos I just took until late in the afternoon.

Lovely blue new leaves on a columbine

Woolly young shoots of the native pearly everlasting, Anaphalis margaritacea, are popping up everywhere. I love this plant. Try to ignore all the weeds around it. I'll get to those...eventually...

Sedum spathulifolium, another native, is forming both new rosettes and the beginnings of blooms. You can see bloom stalks from last year on the left.

Another native, Sedum oreganum, also looking good after this winter. Not that I worried about either of these plants. It just makes me happy.

The alliums are popping up. Allium christophii may be turning into a bit of a weed in the driveway island. Besides these shoots from the bulbs, I'm pretty sure there are swarms of seedlings germinating.

 Yes, I'm crossing into the ridiculous with my new shoot excitement. This is a Macleaya microcarpa I planted last summer. I've been eagerly awaiting its return.

I tore my three huge clumps of Hakonechloa macra 'All Gold' into tiny pieces last summer to spread them over a large area. They're starting to grow now.

The golden Leycesteria formosa is leafing out.

As are the native Oemleria cerasiformis. The blooms are just about open, too, for which the hummingbirds are waiting impatiently.

Buds expanding on the golden Metasequoia glyptostroboides. It's in a slightly dry spot, so I'm at least glad this wet winter (and probably wet spring) will help it get established.

 Sorbaria sorbifolia 'Sem' was among the first to show new growth.

New growth on Kodiak Black Diervilla rivularis.

I love the furry little leaves emerging on the Hydrangea quercifolia.

Croziers unfurling on Woodwardia unigemmata. I was a bit worried about this one, since it went into this cold winter rather stressed. Worries over.

Native Dicentra formosa emerging.

The snow flattened the otherwise evergreen Disporum longistylum, but I cut the broken shoots and the new ones are coming in quickly to replace them.

I find it a little funny now that I ever thought Parahebe perfoliata was tender or deciduous. This is how it looks now, after such a hard winter.

It barely even stopped growing, and as soon as temperatures came back above freezing, new shoots began to expand. Of course, now that it's warmer, they're growing a bit faster.

I'm happy to see the vigorous new growth on the California fuchsias, UC hybrid pictured below.

 The primulas are loving all the rain, like these baby Primula bulleyana next to a rather large-leaved Asarum caudatum.

The fuchsias are starting to grow. The first to show new growth was 'Delta Sarah', shown below.

I was a little worried about Fuchsia excorticata, but obviously I needed have been. It's coming back just fine. While it will never attain the tree-sized proportions here that it does on the Oregon coast or in its native haunts in New Zealand, it can still become a large shrub in a single season and show off its beautiful peeling bark.

Tricyrtis 'Blue Wonder' is turning out to be a bit of a runner. That's OK, though. It can mingle with the swath of black mondo grass.

New growth on Luzula sylvatica 'Marginata'

It's a bit hard to see, but Eccremocarpus scaber is showing new growth. There's one shoot at the base of the stem I'm holding down, and more out of view around the base of the plant. I'm really surprised by this plant. I was expecting the parent to be blasted by this winter and have to rely on seeds germinating. It dropped a lot of seed, so there should be quite a few. I'll transplant some and give others away if they're ready in time for the spring swap.

 Ok, here's a foliage vignette that isn't a ridiculously tiny new shoot. Carex comans and a variegated Acorus. The Acorus is finally starting to look like something. I say "finally" but it's only been a year or two since I planted it there.

One of the two tree peonies I grew from seed. I wonder how many more years I'll have to wait to see them bloom?

 New shoots on Alstroemeria 'Glory of the Andes'.

I have lots of tiny baby Mikado Red California poppies, but the new growth on this plant from last year is more impressive. It's going to be a very orange summer.

I'm inordinately excited by these little lupine seedlings. They came from a single plant that arose from the meadow mix I planted last year from Silverfalls Seed Company in Oregon. It was plant with upright, branching stems, rather than the basal foliage of the Lupinus polyphyllus already occurring on the property. I'm not sure what species it is. From the species listed on their website, it could be L. rivularis, L. perennis, or a Russell hybrid. I didn't get technical in examining the details to find out which one. But there was something about it that I just loved. So I'm happy to have more!

Dasiphora fruticosa really is an amazing plant. I planted these rooted cuttings all over last fall. They didn't even have time to put on any significant growth before going dormant. With deciduous cuttings, this can often spell certain death. Normally a winter like the one we've had this year is less than nothing to this shrub from high up in the Cascades, but I did worry since they were so tiny. The plant in the photo is only about 4 inches tall, and didn't have time last fall to build up much in the way of energy reserves. I love this plant. I don't even mind that it's deciduous. The seedheads are kind of nice in the winter and it's quick to leaf out in spring.

Spotty new shoots on Dracunculus vulgaris.

I've lost Mentha requenii to cold winters before, but the three patches I came across last fall in the Acer griseum bed, and subsequently transplanted to base of the log bordering that bed, didn't bat an eye at the cold this year. Perhaps because this spot has more moisture than the places I've lost it.

 The mosses and lichens have been loving all this rain. Can't say the same for the humans, but we'll survive. This is my Wednesday Vignette, on Thursday, hosted by Anna at Flutter&Hum.

Calceolaria arachnoidea did get a bit mushy from all the cold, though it held up surprisingly well. I cut it back because it was set to smother the surrounding plants in the coming season. It still might. I never thought it would be so vigorous. Look at all those healthy new shoots!

Calceolaria 'Kentish Hero' is significantly less hardy than the species above, being evergreen only down to about 20 degrees, maybe a little lower. Thankfully, it's root hardy into zone 7b. Actually, a couple cuttings I planted elsewhere in this bed fared better than the parent plant, a phenomenon I noticed with the California fuchsias, as well. The cuttings stayed more evergreen, while the established plants all died tot the ground.

New shoots on daylilies.

I've been enjoying how evergreen this Gallium odoratum is. It hitched a ride with the euphorbia, but I'm glad it did. I've heard it usually looks worn out this time of year. Perhaps it will in the future, but this year it's wonderful.

Such a fast spreader, though. Should I be worried? Nah. I need groundcovers like this to fill in around the larger plants. Since it did so well in this spot with hot afternoon sun in the summer and very little water, I'm going to try it in my dry shade nightmare bed, too!


  1. You certainly do have a lot to be excited about, Evan! We don't have the same drama associated with the emergence of new plants from dormancy here in coastal SoCal. I wish I'd find some lupine seedlings but, try as I might, I haven't been able to get any to grow from seed here. However, I do have some California poppies this year and my Cotinus is sprouting colorful new leaves. On the other hand, the Leycestria I planted last year with hope and a prayer appears to be dead.

    1. Have you tried any of the native lupines, like Lupinus succulentus? Or maybe some of the desert lupine species. I'm glad your poppies are growing this year. I've noticed seeds germinating this year in places where they failed last year because of the early heatwaves we had. They needed an extra year to settle in and soak up moisture.

  2. Amazing collection of happy new growth! And now I'm extra worried that my Woodwardia unigemmata (both of them) are doing nothing...

    1. I hope your Woodwardia are just late risers. They can vary in hardiness. I have a hardy form from PDN called 'Ping Wu' which is hardy to zone 7b. Though, by now, I would assume the hardy form is the most commonly available.

  3. Mosses - my favorites! Love that vignette! It looks like everything is going gangbusters in your garden, Evan! I have to tell you, I had that same giddy feeling poking around outside today, as well. It's so wonderful to see it all happen - finally! I had no idea you were such a fuchsia fan. Can I beg you for a favor? Could I please have a cutting of Delta Sarah? I saw it on Pauline's blog last summer, and fell in love. :)

    1. I couldn't resist photographing that patch of moss and lichens. It's wonderful to see things growing again. I love fuchsias. The first plants I bought when the deer fence went up were deciduous azaleas and hardy fuchsias. I have six hardy fuchsias now, plus an 'Autumnal' in a hanging basket that spends winters in the greenhouse. I'd be happy to give you a cutting of 'Delta Sarah'!

  4. I can understand why you got carried away photographing all the fresh new growth, Evan. There's nothing more exciting! Happy spring to you.

    1. Happy spring, Pam! New growth is so exciting!

  5. I love your new shoot excitement, I share it! I finally got out yesterday to do some cleanup and found so much to get excited about too. After the winter we've had it's understandable. I have some of those baby Primula bulleyana as well. I may have pulled some last fall when they were even smaller, thinking they were weeds (Boo Hoo!) Fortunately I missed a good dozen or so. That moss vignette is just luscious. Hooray for your Woodwardia surviving!

    1. It was a beautiful day. Glad you got out to enjoy it, too! Don't worry, those Primula bulleyana will grow up fast and give you more seed.

  6. I love watching plants emerge. Especially woodland treasures coming up thru the pine needles.

    1. I love fall and spring, the seasons of change.

  7. The excitement over emerging new growth is addictive. I try to pay attention to every little thing right now because this short period will be over soon. You have lots of pleasant surprises in the garden, you must feel relief. Hakonechloa is my favorite grass; you were brave to tear it apart but it will pay off in a couple of years with a gorgeous display. Love your Wednesday's vignette.

    1. Yes, all the new growth is helping me get over the things that are dead. I divided my Hakonechloa once before and it doesn't seem like it took that long for the clumps to bulk up. I'm excited about that particular bed. I think it's going to look great.

  8. Your garden's new growth is very exciting this spring although it still feels pretty cold outside up here. Highs in the low to mid fifties.

    1. Same temperatures here. Yesterday was downright chilly.

  9. Enjoyed seeing so many plants unknown and ungrown in my area (CA fuchsia and Hakonechloa excepted). Enjoy the spring, Evan!


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