Saturday, November 8, 2008

Witch hazel fall colors

Hamamelis × intermedia (H. japonica × H. mollis)

Monday, September 8, 2008

After the rain - TS Hanna

Silene maritima, Robin White Breast calyces

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Flowering Purslane

We have tons of weedy Purslane growing in our yard. They have very small yellow flowers, grow vigorously and are a pest. I was surprised to see flowering Purslane sold in a local nursery. I have to grudgingly admit these are quite pretty. I guess I need to change my thinking that they are Portulacas rather than the weedy association I have when I see the word Purslane.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Scarlet Red Malope

Malopes are closely related to Althaea, Abutilon, Gossypium, Kitaibelia, Malva and Sidalcea. They are all in the Malvacea family which also includes, cocoa, cotton, okra, baobab and durian the stinky but delicious Southeast Asian fruit.

We planted annual wildflower seeds to cover a newly created bank and the malope was included in the mixture.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Hibiscus trionum, Flower-of-an-Hour

A weed but a nice weed so we let it grow. Funny but it only grows in our yard. I never see them in the neighbors' weed filled beds or in other waste areas. The flower is short lived - only a day but the plant has numerous buds so several are blooming at any one day. The flower is small not more than a couple of inches in diameter.

The two bottom pictures are of the seedpod which is as interesting as the flower in my opinion.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

2 poppies

This is a field poppy we bought in a wild flower seed mix. Of the original flowers in the mix this is the only one that reseeded every year for 5 years.

The first of the California poppies (Eschscholzia californica) to bloom this year. Of the two flowers blooming now they both look like the common yellow orange California poppies despite my buying a mixed color 'Thai Silk' seed packet. I guess the crenelated folding of the petals is supposed to resemble silk cloth?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Styrax japonicus

Japanese Snowbell

Monday, June 16, 2008

Kalmia latifolia, Mountain laurel

Alpine Pink?

Here's a nice site with pictures of many different cultivars of Kalmia.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Geranium hybrids 'Jolly Bee'?

We were at the local Lowes store and I spotted these wilted perennial geraninums. I bought all three on the display table and I'm glad I did - they have been blooming prolifically ever since I planted them several weeks ago. I scooped up some water from one of the fountain displays :) to revive the plants - I wish they took better care of the plants they sell. I think they are 'Jolly Bee's but I can't be sure because there was no name tags or labels.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Penstemon Navigator series

This is a carefree perennial dwarf Penstemon which grows very vigorously. We bought many at a $.50 clearance sale to see if they would rebloom which they did. It bloomed very nicely last year and are really putting on a show this year having grown to 2 to 5 times their original size.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Dwarf Japanese Solomon's Seal, Polygonatum 'humile'

I bought this tiny Solomon's Seal 'humile' (for humility?) at our Master Gardner's sale last year. I thought I lost it because it was slow in appearing this spring but it came back with great vigor and has spread at least 2 times it's original size. The plant is about 8" tall. Chris of Digital Flower Pictures told me they were very hardy even if planted in shade and would spread and eventually cover a large area so I may use it as a ground cover under some birches.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Acer Japonicum 'Otaki'

This maple is different from the ones we normally call Japanese maple, the Acer Palmatums. It belongs with the other A. Japonicums such as the 'Full Moon' and 'Mai Kujaku' (dancing peacock) maples from Japan. Though not quite a beautiful as either of the ones mentioned above, it is vigorous and handsome in it's own right.

The deer have eaten the new shoots of my 'Full Moon' maple so it's barely surviving and browsed the 'Mai Kujaku' so heavily it died. But the 'Otaki' remains unmolested. I don't know if the rough textured leaves make it less palatable or if it's just lucky happenstance they missed it but the little foot tall tree I bought as a 1 year graft has grown to more than 5 feet tall in 3 years.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Johnny Jump-Ups

These volunteer Johnnys are exceptionally robust this year. The evenly spaced rain kept everything moist during the winter so even if we are below average in rainfall this year the plants held up much better than with drenching rains followed by no rain for a couple of weeks.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sun and Star

Unknown mushroom, probably a bolete and fallen Yoshino cherry sepal.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Anemone 'Sylvestris'

Snowdrop windflower. Tiny but one of the first anemones to bloom in spring.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Inner Beauty

Unknown tulip.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Fritillaria uva-vulpis

A native of Turkey, Iraq and Iran. The bells are downfacing so they are not showy but a small interesting plant nonetheless.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Flowers of Maple Acer Japonicum 'O Taki', alt. 'Odaki'

Acer Japonicum are commonly included with Japanese maples which are Acer plamatum but the leaves differ significantly.

PJM Rhododendron with Gold tips

The PJMs are blooming now. I noticed these because the tips of the stamens appear to be almost metallic gold. Please click on the photo to enlarge so you can clearly see the golden tips.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Skeletonized leaf

Last year I found a perfectly skeletonized leaf but lost it before I could take pictures. I found this leaf a few weeks ago and even if it wasn't completely skeletal I made sure I didn't lose it again. It's quite interesting to see how intricately the veins are arrayed in a dendritic pattern. You can almost imagine it looking like cirliques. I wonder if that's the inspiration for some of the textile designs we see. Please click the photos to see an enlargement.

This first photo is taken under natural light. The light was so dim indoors that it was difficult to take a picture without blurring. The long exposures caused camera shake even if the camera has image stabilization and I braced my hands holding the camera. I should have used a tripod. The rest of the photos were taken using the camera's small flash with an index card used to attenuate the intensity of the light.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Black Cohosh seed pod

Cimicifuga racemosa aka: Black snakeroot, Bugbane, Bugwort, Rattleroot, Rattleweed.

I can hear the seed rattling in the small pods thus the name rattleroot, rattleweed?

Friday, February 22, 2008

Faded Beauty

Camellia flower dead and dried but still attached to the branch. It still looks quite beautiful.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Nascent flower bud of the Magnolia Dr. Merrill

Magnolia x loebneri 'Merrill'--Dr. Merrill Star Magnolia