Double Whammy Bloom Day – July and August 2016

Okay, so I started a Bloom Day post for July. By the time I got back to it, it was closer to the August Bloom Day than the July, so I never posted it. So, for this month’s Bloom Day, you will get a double whammy – a Two-Month Special. 🙂

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Other than a heat spike in early June, our summer over here in western Oregon has been amazing, so far. I know – people who like it hot will most definitely disagree, as temperatures have fluctuated between high 60’s and low 80’s for weeks now. But to a heat-shy Swede like myself, this kind of weather equals perfection! It seems the plants like it too. For one thing, the flowers last a lot longer. Star jasmine and various lilies have perfumed the garden for over a month now. I have absolutely no complaints! Let’s take a look at what else is out there, shall we?

I planted this NOID Yucca in a tall pot with a couple of Chenille plants (Acalypha hispida). The pot cracked, so now I need to glue it back together before the roots are harmed. Never a dull moment, huh?

I planted this NOID Yucca in a tall pot with a couple of Chenille plants (Acalypha hispida). The pot cracked, and a big chunk of it fell off, so now I need to glue the two pieces back together. As if I didn’t have enough other things to do… Never a dull moment, huh?

Wonderful purple cups open up to reveal

Wonderful purple cups open up to reveal…

...this. Lovely Calandrinia spectabilis. Just learned it is only marginally hardy here in the PNW, so it might just turn out to be one of the more expensive "annuals" I bought this year.

…this. Lovely Calandrinia spectabilis. Just learned it is only marginally hardy here in the PNW, so it might just turn out to be one of the more expensive “annuals” I bought this year.

Myrtus communis - the common Myrtle is blooming.

Myrtus communis – the common Myrtle is blooming.

The buds are adorable too - like little pearls.

The buds are adorable too – like little pearls.

I think this is a male flower of my Datisca cannabina. Unless, of course, of course it is a developing female flower.

I think this is a male flower of Datisca cannabina. Unless, of course, of course it is a developing female flower. I’m not quite sure how to tell the difference. This photo is from July.

Datisca cannabina flower

By now, the flowers look like this – lovely green dangles that weep over me.

Datisca cannabina with feather

Here, one of the dangles have caught a downy feather in flight.

This daredevil spider tempts fate by weaving his web between the hungry stalks of the Sarracenias.

Sarracenias

More Sarracenias. I’m still learning how to care for these plants. Meaning, I can never be sure they will still be there from day to day. Fingers crossed I don’t kill them – I have about six different kinds, so chances are good that I screw up on at least a couple.

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This bee made me smile, standing on its head in the Clematis blossom.

Agapanthus 'Storm Cloud'

Not much beats the blue of Agapanthus ‘Storm Cloud’.

Clivia in bloom

So excited to see my Clivia in bloom. The poor thing has apparently been targeted both by birds and a shedding shrub, but its hot orange shines on in its shady corner.

Eryngium 'Tiny Jackpot'

A cute little Eryngium called ‘Tiny Jackpot’.

Fly on Canna

A fly making a touchdown on the showy landing pad of Canna ‘Cleopatra’.

The flowers of Canna 'Cleopatra' are as two-tone as the leaves.

The flowers of ‘Cleopatra’ are as two-tone as the leaves. Reds and yellows with orange markings.

Conca d'Or lilies

Flopping all over in half shade, there were enough Conca d’Or lilies to make a nice bouquet.

Dianella

Pretty blue flowers of the Dianella. This isn’t a plant you grow for the flowers, though. It’s the turquoise berries that develop later that will knock your socks off. Thanks so much for this, Marian! 🙂

Albuca spiralis

The crazy spiral leaf of Albuca spiralis. Such a cool plant! I can pull on those leaves and watch them retract over and over and over again. It is supposed to be hardy here in Zone 8. Still haven’t made my mind up about whether I should keep it in a pot and move it indoors in winter, or if I should take a chance and plant it in the ground. Maybe if I mulch it properly, it would make it, don’t you think?

Albuca spiralis flowers

This is what its flowers looked like. They bloomed in July, and are done now.

Kniphofia 'Percy's Pride', a green flowering Amaranth, and the foliage rosettes of Echium cancans.

Kniphofia ‘Percy’s Pride’, a green flowering Amaranth, and the foliage rosettes of Echium cancans.

Here is Percy again - such a cool plant!

Here is Percy again – such a cool plant!

I liked how the light struck this tattered Amaranth leaf.

I liked how the light struck this tattered Amaranth leaf.

More green flowers! Hydrangea 'Little Lime' is taking on a few pink tones, but is still noticeably green - hooray!

More green flowers! Hydrangea ‘Little Lime’ is taking on a few pink tones, but is still noticeably green – hooray!

This will one day become a planter. I have no excuses as to why it hasn't already. I like the orange Crocosmia with the prickly thorns of the Solanum leaves.

This will one day become a planter. I have no excuses as to why it hasn’t already. I like the orange Crocosmia with the prickly thorns of the Solanum leaves.

I'm ashamed to admit that this Asclepia is still in its nursery pot, and STILL blooming its heart out. Haven't seen any Monarchs yet, though, so I'll keep trying. Maybe if I find it a good spot, they will come...?

I’m ashamed to acknowledge that although this variegated Asclepia is still in its nursery pot, it is STILL blooming its heart out. Haven’t seen any Monarchs yet, though, but I’ll keep trying. Maybe if I find it a good spot, they will come…?

Another presence I keep around the garden mostly for the color echo to the orange flowers, is my cat. Just kidding - he's my all around gardening pal. When temperatures soar, he inspires me to find a shady spot, and rest awhile.

Another presence I keep around the garden mostly for the color echo to the orange flowers, is my cat. Just kidding – he’s my BFF all around gardening pal! When temperatures soar, he inspires me to find a shady spot, and rest awhile.

Anisacanthus - Hummingbird bush

The Anisacanthus is in full bloom. Humming birds LOVE this plant – at least as much as they love Fuchsias, I’d say.

Abutilon and Amaranth

After being moved into more sunlight, all of a sudden, this Abutilon started pushing out blooms. So glad I finally figured out how to please it – here with the long tassels of a Love-Lies-a-Bleeding Amaranth.

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Chocolate Cosmos – shot in the back. Cowardly, I know, but the light through those petals was irresistible!

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‘Vancouver Centennial’ – I really liked the leaves of this Pelargonium. The hot coral flowers are totally acceptable to me too. See – I’m slowly overcoming my aversion to at least a few annuals. 🙂

I'll end this post with yet another green flower. After all, I love them so! Here is Papyrus 'King Tut' looking awfully stately in the sunlight.

I’ll end this post with…  yet another green flower. After all, I love them so! Here is Papyrus ‘King Tut’ looking awfully stately in the sunlight.

Click over to Carol at May Dreams Gardens to see what other August gardens around the world offer. Her post this month made me long for some more rain now that the heat has hit the Pacific NW… (I’m eternally grateful for the respite we got, with mild-mannered weather for most of the summer.)

 

 

About annamadeit

Born and raised in Sweden, my aesthetics and outlook on life are strongly shaped by a culture rich in history and tradition. I care a great deal about environmental responsibility, and my aesthetic reflects the visually clean, functional practicality and sustainable solutions that are the hallmarks of modern Scandinavia. I was trained as an architect at the University of Cincinnati and as a color specialist at the Scandinavian Colour Institute in Stockholm. I'm obsessed with plants and gardens, and aim to take my skill set a step further by designing gardens as well as interiors. As someone so aptly said: " Architecture is the skin that separates the exterior from the interior". So true - you can't successfully focus on one without incorporating the other. I'm also an avid cook, and I love to ski. In addition, I put time and efforts into trying to rectify things that I feel are wrong in my immediate community. As you will see, The Creative Flux will touch on all these things, and more. For sure, it's all over the map, but then again - so am I! Welcome to my blog!
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29 Responses to Double Whammy Bloom Day – July and August 2016

  1. Beautiful pictures with excellent, informative, text. I’m with you entirely on temperature

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks Derrick! Yeah, I feel truly blessed with our unusually cool summer. It even rained a couple of times – which is almost completely unheard of. I enjoyed it while it lasted!

  2. Lea says:

    Beautiful flowers, one and all!
    Happy Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day!

  3. Tina says:

    Gorgeous photos–love the shots of the various critters, but also of the tiny blooms, like the Dianella. Love that green amaranth!

  4. Agapanthus are house plants here but nothing beats that incredible blue color!

  5. About time for your Bloom Day posts! Hahaha…just kidding. Gorgeous flowers and photography. My favorite is the cat. OK not really but a cat post would be in order. The cat told me to say that.

    • annamadeit says:

      Haha T – a cat post WOULD be in order!!! I really SHOULD do a post on His Helpful Highness. He does a bang-up job telling me to stop working and chill out a little instead. 🙂

  6. Alan @ it's not work, it's gardening! says:

    Lots to love here, but I especially love the Crocosmia paired with the Solanum — nice color echo!

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks Alan! I had such big plans for containers, but – sigh! – they are all still waiting for me to get my act together. This was the summer to work on infrastructure – not so much decor. One of these days…

  7. Oh how I wish I had the space for Datisca cannabina, yours is gorgeous! My Dianella bloomed but sadly no berries developed…what’s up with that? Finally I LOVE that you paired your Papyrus with a king chair…perfect!

    • annamadeit says:

      Pictures are deceptive.. In all truth, I don’t really have room for the Datisca either, but as usual, that hasn’t stopped me. BUT, the king chair is (sadly) also way to big for my little patio, and will have to move. I have a shadier spot in mind for it, which will actually give me more practical use for the patio. Moving it will make room for two chairs and a table. Of course, this move will force the separation of the fortuitous combo, as the Papyrus would totally sulk in shade. Bummed about that, but what’s a girl to do…? 😦

    • annamadeit says:

      You know, about the Dianella – I just checked mine. There isn’t a whole lot of evidence of any berries on it yet, either. I’ll report back if I see any changes. I had a Dianella years ago (which perished in 2013, I believe, and it had those fabulous berries. If this one doesn’t, and your still doesn’t… well, then we have a mystery on our hands… Guess we’ll have to revisit that one.

  8. Kris P says:

    I enjoyed your two-fer Bloom Day post, Anna, although it inspired a degree of jealousy on my part. I planted 2 pots with the tiny bulbs of that Albuca last fall but thus far I’ve got nothing. (The fact that I haven’t reliably watered them is beside the point.) I’m also jealous of the blooms on your Anisacanthus. I planted 2 of those after finding them in my local garden center this summer but they’ve yet to do much of anything in my garden. Still, despite the plant-murdering heatwave that started summer here this year, I can’t complain overall. As long as the fires stay away, I’m good.

    Happy GBBD!

  9. I like your Chocolate Cosmos photo better than mine ! And thank you for giving us all permission to combine 2 months if need be !
    I saw Datisca for the first time at Wave Hill at least 10 years ago. I took a photo and spent a few years after trying to ID it, only to learn that there is no way I had room. Sigh.

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks Kathy – they are such photogenic plants, aren’t they? As for the Datisca, I don’t really have room either. I planted it in a half barrel to minimize its footprint. I honestly have become a terrible cramscaper, realizing that if I go vertical, I can cram so much more into my little yard. It’s almost time for an intervention…

  10. rickii says:

    Only you could feature a tattered leaf and turn it into a work of art.

  11. Linnae says:

    Hello! I thoroughly enjoyed touring your garden today. That agapanthus really struck a chord with me. I think it needs to go on my purchase list! Also, I love the King Tut papyrus! I’ve seen them in pots over here on the east side (I’m in Washington state), but not planted in the ground. Not sure if they would survive our winters! Happy Bloom Day!

    • annamadeit says:

      Hi Linnae, Happy GBBD to you too, and thanks for stopping by! I think the Agapanthus would make it – especially if it had time to get established, and had good drainage, and you mulched it in winter. As for the Papyrus – it is most definitely an annual – even on the west side of the Cascades.

  12. Evan Bean says:

    I’ve been loving the cooler weather, too. I start to wilt if the temperature goes above 75! The color echo between the Solanum and Crocosmia is perfect! I also love ‘Percy’s Pride’. We’re so lucky Rickie shared it with us!

    • annamadeit says:

      Such a great plant, isn’t it? And such a fab summer, so far. Can’t wait to plant them all together. There is a Restio, an orange Cuphea and a yellow Oxalis that are meant to be part of the arrangement too. But now I’m considering planting both the Restio and the Crocosmia in the ground, and just put the more tender plants in the planter. We’ll see. With the heat coming, I’m getting a bit anxious with all my unfinished planters… better get on it!

  13. Denise says:

    Growing a false hemp in a stock tank was on the list for this summer but I just never made the order. Love yours! Here in LA it’s been a fairly mild summer too, hovering mid 80s before this current heat wave, but it hasn’t topped 100 here much this summer.

    • annamadeit says:

      There is always next year… I got my start from a fellow blogger. If you lived closer, I’d happily share. It’s such a cool plant! We’re bracing for heat this week up here – it’s supposed to get up into the 100s. I think I’ll move down to the basement for a while. It will keep me relatively sane.

  14. Rose says:

    Your weather sounds heavenly, Anna. We’ve had such a hot summer that I have spent as much time indoors as possible. It’s always interesting to see the cool plants you have, so many that we can’t grow at all here in zone 5. Your photos are fantastic as always!

    • annamadeit says:

      Aw, thank you Rose, and I’m so sorry about your awful summer… I truly feel your pain. Our last summer was like that, and since I work a good portion of my day outside, I was utterly miserable. Feel like we hit the jackpot this year. Hope you get some relief soon. We’re hitting 100 this weekend, but somehow, I feel like I will be able to handle it. Now, if it continues for days and days… well, then I will probably just have to crawl out of my skin!

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