What looks good/bad in your garden, February 2013?
Happy February! I don't know about you, but I'm thrilled to put January behind us! The frequent gloomy days, and the record-setting cold snap, and then a weekend of unrelenting rain are best left as memories, hah!
There's plenty in my garden that looks bad, although there's less than before since I've removed much of it (liquefied pencil "cacti", Euphorbia tirucalli, some melted plumerias (not all though), and the fried foliage of Merremia dissecta and lantanas). I know, I know, it's best to wait until when things resprout, but honestly, the merremia needed to be trimmed low anyway (it's already resprouting and even if it hadn't, it's easy from seed), and I don't care enough about the lantana (hah!) to wait until it's safe. I'd rather just do it now than deal with dropped foliage later. And as for the pencil "cacti", they looked awful and yes most would have survived, but they were only just now looking good from the single coldest night in 75 years from two years ago, so I'm tired of having them always in a state of pseudo-recover, lol. I left one that is undamaged, but I discarded two five footers that looked horrific. Buh-BYE!
I also hacked back and will soon discard my formerly-huge, formerly-beautiful trashcan-size lid paddle cactus Opuntia robusta. It leaned and wilted and then the weight of the massive paddles just made the whole darn thing just snap itself into pieces. I'm not dealing with THAT again. I'll just replace it with a nice native Opuntia englemanii. Here's the O. robusta BEFORE cleanup:
Here's some things that look good.
"Cape cowslips" (Lachenalia), a fun bulb that has done great for me for years on the east side of the house. Foliage in mid-winter, blooms in mid and late winter, and then a disappearing act for summer. So easy and so fun, and yup, no water during the hot months, how easy is THAT?
Some chocolate-freckled foliage Oxalis that I started from stem cutting several years ago. I know, I know, it's aggressive, but the foliage is great and the blooms are wonderful and I love that it grows when it's easy to keep happy and then goes dormant for summer. Neat little scaly bulbs! Half day sun or all day sun keeps them happy and blooming.
Finally a quick top-view of a "coral aloe" (Aloe striata) looking GREAT despite getting NO protection during the cold snap. Definitely one of my very favorite aloes. I love how the white edges on the leaves turn coral pink/red in winter, plus they are extremely reliable bloomers. You can't see it in this pic, but there's already a bloom stalk emerging between a few leaves of this plant. Definitely a winner--no need to worry about heat, or cold, or watering with this one.
What about you and your garden? How are things looking? Some of my citrus is still annoyed, and some looks totally unbothered. I scooped up three five gallon Home Depot buckets' worth of dried/dropped citrus foliage yesterday before the Super Bowl and have plenty more to do. What about your garden?
Looking forward to lots of pics and updates. Happy gardening all!
Grant, very, very tired of wearing sweaters!
Here is a link that might be useful: Pics from my garden February 2013