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Purchased- November 14th, 2013

15 Nov

Swanson’s-

Mahonia ‘Soft Caress’

 

 

Newcastle Fruit Stand-

5 x Viola x wallichiana (pansies)

1 x Mahonia nervosa

1 x unmarked fern (looks like an evergreen tufted type)

1 x Dryopteris koidzumiana

2 x Huechera americana ‘Marvelous Marble’

3 x Lewisia hybrids

1 x Delosperma cooperi

1 x Delosperma PS001S’ “Fire Spinner”

1 x Trifolium alba ‘Dark Dancer’

1 x random Sempervivum cultivar

1 x Salvia greggii ‘Wild Thing’

 

full flat of plants, on sale half off and with a small flat discount on top of that! Love end of season sales. Just hope they all pull through winter and flower next year 😉

Plectranthus ‘Velvet Elvis’

26 Oct

This was bought as a color spot “annual” this spring, one of those premium foliage plants that makes everything else look good.

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It started blooming about the same time I brought it in, which is a shame, since I was looking forward to seeing if the hummers would like it. As a tropical perennial, it shouldn’t be hard to overwinter. This is closely related to the old fashioned “Swedish Ivy” (which of course is neither Swedish, nor an ivy, lol), so I am not anticipating any great difficulty in overwintering the main plant.

I got it because I loved the leaves- richly felted dark green above, nicely pleated along the veins, and with an amazing deep purple reverse!

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Now I have to admit, purple is my favorite color, but on this it is quite stunning, and I keep wondering what it would look like in a hanging basket with the sun shining through its dark leaves. Maybe next year I’ll plant some that way and see.

I have one cutting going already, and by spring I may well have several more. I may even try this bedded out in the rockery, to let it do what it wants with the salvias and such out there. Come to think of it, the dark leaves would set off the flowers of the tiny Fuchsia campos-portoi, and the Salvia ‘Cerro Potosi’ too. Looks good with the orange Cuphea ignea and Lantana camara I have them mixed with now, too, so lots of possibilities. Only flowers in fall, though… Too bad, as I would love to see these blooming all summer. Can’t have everything though, huh?

What’s Blooming September 30th, 2013

30 Sep

Abutilon megapotamicum
Achillea millefolium
Agastache ‘Apricot Sprite’
Agastache ‘Grape Nectar’
Agastache ‘Orange Nectar’
Aster subspicatus
Bacopa monieri
Ballotta nigra
Begonia boliviensis
Campanula persicifolia
Celosia ‘New Look’
Chaenorhinum origanifolium ‘Blue Dream’
Chlorophytum camosum
Choisya ternata
Chrysanthemum partheniacum
Claytonia sibirica
Convulvulus arvensis
Cuphea cyanea ‘Carribean Sunset’
Cuphea ignea
Cuphea llavea ‘Flamenco Samba’
Cuphea llavea ‘Tiny Mice’
Cyclamen hederifolium
Dahlia coccinea (Bishop’s type)
Dahlia (white cactus flowered)
Dicentra Formosa
Echinacea purpurea
Epilobium ciliatum
Fuchsia campos-portoi
Fuchsia hatschbachii
Fuchsia magellanica ‘aurea’
Fuchsia magellanica ‘molinae’
Fuchsia magellanica (Patrick’s)
Fuchsia magellanica (Gram’s)
Fuchsia magellanica (plant swap)
Fuchsia triphylla ‘Gartenmeister Bonstedt’
Fuchsia triphylla ‘Mary’
Fuchsia ‘Auntie Jinks’
Fuchsia ‘Billy Green’
Fuchsia ‘Display’
Fuchsia ‘Juellia’
Fuchsia ‘Marinka’
Fuchsia ‘Princessita’
Fuchsia ‘Whiteknight’s Amethyst’
Gazania ‘Daybreak Garden Sun’
Impatiens capensis
Impatiens noli-tangere
Ipomoea multfida
Medicago sativa
Mina lobata
Nemesia ‘Aromatica White Improved’
Nemesia hybrids
Kalanchoe blossfieldiana
Lapsana communis
Lavendula angustifolia
Lobelia erinus
Lobularia maritime
Lonicera japonica ‘Pink Lemonade’
Lonicera sempervirens ‘Major Wheeler’
Mentha himalayensis
Mentha ‘Chocolate’
Nicotiana mutabilis
Oenothera missouriensis
Pentas lanceolata
Plantago major
Salvia coccinea ‘Forest Fire’
Salvia coccinea ‘Snow Nymph’
Salvia darcyi ‘Pscarl’
Salvia elegans ‘Tangerine’
Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’
Salvia leucantha x ‘Phyllis Fancy’
Salvia microphylla ‘Cerro Potosi’
Salvia patens ‘Cobalt’
Salvia ‘Wendy’s Wish’
Sedum spectabilis ‘Autumn Joy’
Sedum spectabilis (Heronwood variegated)
Solenostemon scuttelariodes ‘Kiwi Fern’
Solidago Canadensis
Strobilanthes dyeriana
Tagetes signata ‘Starfire’
Tagetes ‘Disco Orange’
Tagetes ‘Disco Yellow’

Anna’s Perambulations, Sept 26th, 2013

26 Sep

Cuphea llavea ‘Tiny Mice’

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Fuchsia x ‘Billy Green’

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This is the first time I had seen them use this particular fuchsia, and she must have really liked it since she hovered at each flower for several seconds to get every drop, while the Cuphea was a short probe into each flower…

Cuphea l. ‘Flamenco Samba’

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Mina lobata

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Dahlia coccinea (Bishp’s type)

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Fuchsia x ‘Display’

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Oddly enough, she completely ignored the Cuphea ignea that had been a favorite all summer, as well as Salvia ‘Hotlips’, ‘Cerro Potosi’ and ‘Wemdy’s Wish’ which are all blooming as well, and were favorites earlier. Maybe the cooler weather favored the plants above somehow?

She ended by landing in the Rosa gymnocarpa in her favorite spot. They may not like the flowers of this native (not that it’s blooming now, it usually only blooms in late spring), but they sure like hiding and resting in it!

Saving Tomato Seeds

16 Sep

Ok, so I scooped out some of the seeds of the beautiful yellow heirloom tomatoes we just got at the market

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I cut the fruit in half for roasting, and scooped out the pockets of jelly with the seeds in them from around the rim of half of one fruit

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Note how the inside has a red heart, while the outside of these when ripe is a golden yellow washed or lightly striped reddish pinkish orange. Beautiful fruit.

So, to clean these I just popped the jelly covered seeds in a strainer, and rinsed

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Make sure you kind of press the pulp out, rubbing the seeds against the mesh of the strainer till the pulp is mostly pushed through and washed away. With these, a membrane like skin remains, but that’s ok. It should flake off for the most part when dry, and at any rate doesn’t affect germination too much.

Knock the cleaned seeds out onto a paper towel

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Pat the seeds as dry as you can, then scrape the seeds back into the center of the towel. At this point you can let them dry like this. I like to fold the towel over the top to cover them, and let the towel wick the moisture away as much as possible.

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In a few days they should be dry, and you can store them in a seed packet, or plastic bag or however you like to do it. I make these little origami type seed packets, this one is ready for the seeds as soon as they dry.

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You can use this same basic method to clean pretty much any berry or fruit to get the seeds inside. Research germination first though, since some kinds of berries and fruits germinate best when fresh, so instead of saving the seeds, you would want to sow them immediately. Tomatoes and most vegetables like cucumbers, peppers, etc. should be pretty good saved up though.

Hummer Banquet

7 Sep

Cuphea ignea and Fuchsia magellanica “Whiteknight’s Amethyst”

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Impatiens noli-tangere (yellow), and I capensis (orange)

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Fuchsia magelanica (Gram’s heirloom, probably ‘ricartoni’), and Salvia elegans ‘Tangerine’

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Cuphea (cyanea?) ‘Carribean Sunset’ and Abutilon megapotamicum

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Fuchsia x ‘Display’ and Lobelia erinus (yes, the annual, I have no idea if the birds were actually finding much in them or not, but bees have also been going over these)

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Cuphea ‘Flamenco Samba’

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Mina lobata

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The tangle…
Salvia darcyi ‘Pscarl’
Aster subspicatus (not a hummer flower, but lots here)
Salvia x ‘Wendy’s Wish’
Ipomoea multifida
Lychnis coronaria
Salvia coccinea
And others…

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Salvia patens ‘Cobalt’ and Cuphea ignea

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Impatiens capensis, I. noli-tangere

28 Aug

Aside from the typical annual Impatiens, my first ‘wild’ impatiens was one I picked up at Mercer Slough. I loved the tall annual with the dusky pink flowers that hummers would visit a bit till the bumbles got into them, and I adored how the bumbles would crawl all he way inside the odd flowers, then buzz their way backwards to get out, lol. Unfortunately, it was t long after I had them well established that I found out that particular species, I. glamdulifera, is an official no joins weed. It certainly seeds itself well enough to be one, for sure.

A few years after that, a good friend of mine gave me seedlings of one she got at the MSK Rare Plant nursery in Shoreline. Although this species, Impatiens noli-tangere is native to the northwestern counties of Washington up into British Columbia and east, the seed for this strain originated in the Northeast US. It’s bright yellow hooded flowers are smaller than the above policeman’s helmet, but similar, and with a nice long spur. Till this year, I had never seen. Hummer visit, only the abundant bees, bit a week or so ago I watched a female Anna’s visit nearly every flower open on a handful that survived the summer drought in the back.

Now it may be that my most recent acquisition, Impatiens capensis, has given he birds a heads up? Hard to say, but the orange speckled flowers of this species are otherwise very similar in shape to the noli-tangere I already had. I got six small seedlings from Patrick on the hummingbird forum, and though they were planted rather late, and there hasn’t been a lot of top growth, there are quite a few flowers on several of them.

I’m still hoping to find one of the native species, Impatiens ecalcarata in particular, but they seem to be rather overrun with I. capensis these days. It probably should be a noxious weed, really, but at least it is really popular with the bees and hummingbirds. I imagine something eats those big succulent seeds, too.

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