Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
I was going to do a simple answer to this post left by Andrea at Popular Growth, but it got a bit lengthy and I though others might be able to contribute. So if you are a Florida Gardener, feel free to put in your two cents.
So I have a very stupid stupid question, if you leave the potatoe vine, is it sort of a perennial in your garden? How do you guys maintain everything? Cut it all down sometime in the year, just to refresh them? (considering you don't get snow). I am SO ignorant to gardening in the hotter areas and Im REALLY interested in knowing all about them.
Ok, here is some Florida Gardening 101. We actually do get snow down here, albeit once every 20 years and only a few flurries at most. But I've seen it here. Typically, we get one or two killing frosts. Most non-coastal cities north of Orlando will get frost. These frosts will take out most annuals, especially coleus and impatiens. Saved are the shell gingers, palms, camellias, pansies and snapdragons, which are hardly effected by the cold. Most other perennials simply die to the ground, but come back in the spring. This includes the sweet potato vine, which grows back from the tuber (the sweet potato) underground. The ground rarely freezes, so these plants do tend last a while. Another interesting aspect of gardening down here that Northerners find strange is that we tend to have two mini seasons instead of one year long one. We are currently headed into a dormant period (Mid-July thru August). This mainly effects veggies and annual flowers. They just kind of stop growing. Many veggie gardeners clear every out everything and start again in September. With my perennials, I cut them back somewhat dramatically before or after this dormant period. This year I did it in the beginning of June so my plants would be back in shape by the 4th. I might do it again in September. With the sweet potato vine, I don't cut it back severely, just take clippings to keep it check and looking full. Anyway - hope this answers your question!
Sunday, July 20, 2008
This garden is what it is. For some reason, it is not capturing my imagination, maybe because it is pretty decent as is. There are bananas, palms, elephant ears, Persian shield, butterfly ginger, and hidden ginger. Below is a picture of the butterfly ginger bud, one of my favorite plants.
Here is the front garden. The tree is a pink oleander. There is a tree philodendron, pink vinca, lime green coleus, and irises against the house. Snap dragons and new Guinea impatiens have largely faded away. It always amazes me the things I notice in pictures that don't really stand out in real life. For instance, I pass by this spot several times a day, but I only just now noticed how crooked that first line of vinca is. I'll have to work on filling that in.
At this time of year it, it feels as though my main purpose as a gardener is to move plants from one spot to the another, and sometimes back again. There isn't much else to do besides weed some. There seems to be multiple reasons to move plants. Below, this little canna is growing out of bounds and needs to be put back.
At the store I was eyeing some one gallon pots of crepe myrtle that were on sale for about $5. Yesterday, after pulling out the 18th trillion crepe myrtle seedlings, I finally got smart. So I transplanted a bunch of seedlings from my trees to the fences on the sides of my yard. It is an experiment and they are still in a bit of shock. Hopefully it will work and I'll have a bunch of crepe myrtle bushes.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Spent the evening at my Mom's house - thanks for the lasagna, guys! It's been a couple of weeks since I've been over there so I spent some time weeding her garden. It has come a long way since I last posted it in April. Go here to see what they used to look like. Above: The circle is filled with a giant bird of paradise, lime green coleus, varigated ginger, mexican petunia, New Guinea impatiens, vinca, and added today, sweet potato vine. In between the two bushes in the back is a brugmansia that is seriously under preforming. It only has one sad little leaf on it. Not sure what the problem is, but it is really bumming me out.
Above: Along the house, under the bushes, are the plants I orignally found in the bed, irises and mystery plants. The mystery plants are bulbs that my mother saved from the dumpster on a volunteer project from a few years ago. They haven't bloomed so there is no telling what they are. One plant I know is a crinum, but I'm not sure about the others. They remind me of my peruvian daffodils, which would be great, but that may be wishful thinking. I really have no idea what they are, but there are a lot of them!
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
I have not abandoned you, dear ol' blog. I just have so much more to write about than time to write it. Trying to get the house and garden ready for the family coming over on the 4th. I will be sure to post pictures so you can join in on the beer, BBQ, and bird scaring!
Happy 4th of July!
Posted by Wicked Gardener at 6:38 PM