Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Flowers of Western America

The Lewisias are flowering succulents of Western America. I have a number of them and care is very easy. Plant them in very well-drained, low fertility soils and they will flourish happily. They are great additions to rock gardens and can also be successfully grown in raised beds and containers. I have planted mine with about 75% pumice mixed in the soil and mounded the soil up a little to keep the crown dry. The flower colors are varied from white, pink, magenta (pink-purple), coral, apricot, gold (yellow-orange) They also come in deciduous species, so remember where you plant them or grow them in pots. Unglazed pots are the best to use! All will tolerate partial sun, but prefer full sun. Since Lewisia is a native plant it is perfect for the drought tolerant garden.

USDA hardiness zone 6 to zone 8

Friday, May 27, 2011

Showy Viburnum

I love this Viburnum in the side garden for the fact that it looks like Hydrangea. Love Hydrangea flowers, but are not on my list of plants to grow. High maintenance in a garden does not work for me. I have looked through a couple of books and still not sure what variety this is. In February I discovered a small pink Viburnum in bloom that I had planted which a hummingbird was feeding at it. Saw it from the front window of the house, if I had not spotted the Hummingbird I would have passed over the Viburnum. Beech Street Gardens is like Willy Wonka's candy factory "Little surprises around every corner, but nothing dangerous!"
Viburnums are a plant that should be add to gardens. They are drought tolerant, showy flowers, some fruit, others are fragrant, and there are even varieties that will give you beautiful Autumn color.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Darlings of the Pacific

Pacific Coast Irises are one of my favorite flowers to have in the gardens. All three pictured are in different growing conditions and they come through the years with flying colors.

Total Shade

Afternoon Sun Only

Morning Sun Only

The Pacific Coast Native Iris are beardless iris of the series "Californicae”, and are usually labeled as Pacific Coast Iris, Pacificas, or Pacifica Hybrids. They are small, compact plants with slender, wiry rhizomes, and narrow grass-like leaves. Most Pacific Coast Irises are evergreen, growing 6 to 24 inches high and in the garden, will develop under conditions similar to those of their natural habitat.
The most important factor in the garden is good drainage. Pacific Coast Irises will not tolerate soils with stagnant water. Stagnation or excessive water promotes root damage and various diseases from which the plants cannot recover. I always mix in pumice when I plant them. If it gets overly hot you may have to give them a small drink of water, but not in the heat of the day! But another great plant for the drought tolerant garden.

USDA zone 8 to zone 9

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Deciduous & Delicious


MAY 6th

May 18th

The showstoppers of the Azaleas are the Exbury varieties, coming in a stunning collection of red, orange, apricot and gold funnel-shaped flowers. Another nice thing are the flowers range in 2" to 3" in size. They blaze into bloom in late Spring, right before their foliage appears like the Dogwoods and Magnolias that are planted here at Beech Street Gardens. The Exbury Azalea color only seems more pronounced for their "naked" blooms. The Arneson Gem is planted in the side garden and is lightly shaded, I do not think the sun hits it full force. Deciduous azaleas to me are one of the most striking flowering shrubs. The colors are vivid and bright, and often have the shades that rhododendrons can not offer.

USDA zone 4 to zone 7

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Gardens of Blues...........

The blues have taken over the gardens this last week. Funny how that happens, wonder what the color scheme will be next week.








Friday, May 6, 2011

Beech Street Gardens is waking up

Flowers are coming out all over the place................