Friday Night Garden

I'm planting a small drift of echeveria in a small corner of the garden (inspired by something I saw last month at UC Davis). It will fill in eventually. In the meantime, it looks nice with Sisyrinchium bellum.




I thought I pulled out all the sweet pea. This was a nice little surprise coming up in the tomato.


I think tomatoes like this come from flowers like these.


New lemon blossoms--yay!


Next to it, Datura wrightii. I had to pull the one I showed you so many pictures of because it was getting out of line. This one should be fine here.


It hasn't flowered yet, but once it starts this will be a nice place to sit.


The other solanum?


Yeah, I'm going to let the brugmansia do whatever it wants this year. But next year, I prune.


I thought I might have to reconsider my shade plants when the neighbor nuked his yard a month ago. I had planted in consideration of the shade his forest cast over my garden.

But I know some plants that need shade inland will do fine in full sun on the coast. So, it's a question of exactly how coastal am I, here in south central San Francisco. I really don't know. I'm going to wait a while and see what happens. I don't want to move anything unless I have to.

So far, the only thing that had to go was some Clivia miniata that I could see was suffering. I potted them up and replaced them with these cymbidium I got from a friend last year. These are actually two of three divisions I took from a single plant.


Now I think Cymbidium is a better choice than Clivia all around.


I added some Stachys byzantina from a clump that wants to swallow the path at the bottom of the stairs.


Here, by the way, is the neighbor's yard. It's no surprise some of those bamboo shoots are already taller than I am. In another year or two, I'll have his bamboo on my side of the fence. Sigh.


Back to my garden, this is Mimulus cardinalis; it will take sun or shade. This one's in shade.




I'm trying to grow some cuttings.

I planted a buckeye this year. Aesculus californica. Here it is.


I'll have to prune this every year, or it will become an enormous tree and destroy the garden. It can take a lot of pruning tho, and I will be happy to do it. I love this tree and I have no concerns at all about its quick, sudden summer dormancy that turns the whole thing brown for a month in the middle of the summer. No problem.

I picked a fabulous specimen. Look at the branching!


Okay, gotta go. More later.


Pam/Digging said...

Is your garden the same size as your neighbor's yard? If so, I'm impressed by how much you've done with such a small plot. I've never gotten the sense that your garden is tiny---you've made it live larger with a cloak of green texture and a variety of beautiful flowering plants.

chuck b. said...

I'm can't be sure sure how wide his yard is compared to mine without trespassing, and of course I would never do that. But the depth is nearly identical. His lower deck removes some of his ground space.

I have approx 450 sq. ft. of dirt, and a little bit more of concrete.

Thanks for the compliments...this is the only garden I've ever had, and I feel like I've learned a lot about manipulating small spaces in the last couple of years.

Christopher C. NC said...

From the remnants of pots and statuary in the neighbor's nuked yard it is obvious that someone at some point gardened in that space. They may have made a poor choice of bamboos, but I look at it and see the fate of any garden that is abandoned.

I am fairly certain that my old garden will be desert dust within three years. It may become an eyesore, but that might not be as oppressive as a well watered abandoned garden.

chuck b. said...
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chuck b. said...

Yep, it was a coherent Asian-themed garden complete with a cherry tree, Japanese maple, bamboo, buddhas and little temples.

chuck b. said...

The pots even have dragon reliefs carved in them.

JvA said...

Oh, that's sad.

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lisa said...

I think your garden's coming along really well! Too bad your neighbor isn't doing anything with his space, but I guess that's better than overgrown.

Kelsey Byers said...

Hi Chuck,

I'm a grad student working on /Mimulus cardinalis/, and happened to stumble across your blog today. That yellow variant is very unusual - would you mind sharing where you got it? There are a few natural populations of yellow /cardinalis/ around, and I'm curious if it's from one of them.

Kelsey Byers
(grad student at UW in Seattle)

chuck b. said...

Gosh, I don't remember where I got it. Most likely a San Francisco Botanical Garden plant sale. I think this selection name is 'Santa Cruz Island Gold'. I know it's rare in nature (presumably limited to Santa Cruz Island), but I think it's generally available in the native plant trade.

sierra1194 said...

just wondering how the cymbidiums planted directly into your yard, instead of in a pot, are going? I've been wondering if cymbidiums would do alright directly in the ground here in los angeles.

chuck b. said...

The cymbidium was in a pot, in the ground. The general wisdom is that they bloom prolifically when their roots are very tightly crowded.

Alas, I gave the cymbidium to a friend in Berkeley who has kept them in a pot, and this is what they look like today: