June 4, 2006

Garden walk in the rain

Cyrtanthus brachyscyphus
The rain has not kept us from working in the garden, and even though it is flooding, many things we're still planted since the weather has been at least, good for that!
A walk around the yard, with the camera reveals some surprises. Like this first blossom on a winter dormant South African Cyrtanthus bulb, C. brachyscyphus. Samll, no taller than 8 inches, I was happy to find it establishing itself in a small clay pot in the greenhouse. You can tell why it is called the fire lily in South Africa, it provided a little spark on such a dready day.

A blizzard of Enkiathus Blossoms
Somtimes, it's not about the flowers on the reen, or in this case the shrub, but it's more about the geshtault of the moment. As the Japanese find great respect in this (FOr instance, Cherry blossom festivals or Sakura are really not about the flowers on the tree, but about how the shatter and fall, twisting in the wind and the patterns they make on the rocks, streams and ground. How very Wabi Sabi. Anyway, I could not help but think of that, as I discovered this dusting of Enkiathus blossoms on the gravel walk to the greenhouse.

Camassia leichtlinii semiplena
The Camas Lily, native to the pacific north west is a North American bulb that provides welcom color and the magnificence of height, during a time when there are remarkable few bulbs in bloom, at the begining of June. I feel a special attachment since my brother had once lived in Camas Washington, and it was there where I first found fields of this beautiful American bulb plant.; Typcally blue, there is a white form, and above, a rarer double form of the white Camas lily. Inexpensive enough, one can afford a dozen or two, look for them in specialty bulb catalogs, they are not that difficult to find.

Saxifraga X 'Sieben'
We keep a number of troughs, and this is a tiny one, kept mostly in the Alpine house where we keep many of the Saxifrages. Here, S. 'Sieben" shows a dainty wire of a stem, with tiny white saxifrageous blossoms. It appears happy enough to not be in the rain, where the pounding drops could dislodge some of the llimestone dusting on the foliage of this high elevation alpine plant from Europe.

Rhodohypoxis baurii in a trough
I have one trough that is in full sun, and for the fun of it, I planted some bulbs in it too, including some frost tender Rhodohypoxis, another summer blooming South African that I happen to be fond of at the moment. I have so many, that I decided to stach a potful in the sunny trough next to an Allium.

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