Back yard Photos (LOTS) 8/10 - Del Ray Tropics / King-James Key

NoVaPlantGuy_Z7b_8a(Alexandria, VA 7B/8A)August 26, 2010

I figured I would post this in a few forums, as there are a few different plants I enjoy / collect in them. Sorry for the poor quality of Photos, and that they are so large. They are iPhone photos which I uploaded directly to Photobucket Via the photobucket app for iPhone.

Well I finally got around to taking some photos of the back yard at our new place. It isn't much but it's our own small tropical paradise here in Northern Virginia. Don't think we can quite compare to many gardens here, but it's still fairly nice. We rent our home so we aren't too keen on spending lots of money actually landscaping the grounds so we make do. The real garden will come when we move to Florida.

We call it the "Del Ray Tropics" and / or "King-James Key". The neighborhood we live in in Old Town Alexandria, VA along the western shores of the Potomac River is called Del Ray. Yes I know its cheesy we named it, but what the heck! =o) It's actually had this name for a few few years now, but now that its grown and we entertain, others have starting calling it by its name too. I suppose it could have been cheesier though. LOL! I'm a Jimmy Buffet fan and thought of naming it "Parrot Head Key". LOL!

Hope you enjoy the photos of our little piece of Tropical Paradise.

View when you first walk around back from the front of the house.

Just one of many views sitting at the main table.

View looking into the "entrance" to the "outdoor room".

7 foot Phoenix Roebelenii. It sits up on a small iron table which gives it another 2 feet or so of height.


Smaller P. Roebelenii 3 trunk. This one has added about 8" of trunk in the last year. Both the big one and this one are growing like CRAZY!

6 foot yellow no name Plumeria. More blooms coming and this thing is INCREDIBLY fragrant! Citrus like, hint of frootloops, very sweet. Windmill Palm and Sago also in the shot.

Close up of yellow Plumie blooms. Beautiful!

6 foot white no name Plumeria. Two smaller ones under it. The smaller one to the right is Nebel's Rainbow.

Close up of blooms of no name white Plumie. Also very fragrant, but not as much so as the yellow. Also blooms alot.

A 4 foot, no name Plumeria that was grown from seed. Color is not yet known.

Plumeria Singapore Dwarf. (Obtusa) Not sure what color it is yet though.

Colocasia "Blue Hawaii". It is blooming, but the flowers seem to be fairly small and insignificant.

Jatropha Podagrica (Budda Belly) which I have had for over 5 years now. Constantly blooms, even in winter when it loses most or all of its leaves.

Thank you all for looking! =o)

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Very nice yard! You have some really interesting plants (like that Jatropha Podagrica!) and that pygmy palm is looking fantastic. The plumerias also look great and very healthy. I really like the shape of your plumies because the branches look like they are very evenly distributed (unlike my large plumerias!). I just got a singapore when I came back from Hawaii and its growing so slow but I hope that a nice spot by a window during the winter will change that! I dont think it will look as nice as your singapore for a while though!
Do you know where in Florida you are moving to? You must be pretty excited! Your yard is looking great and all your plants look very healthy.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 1:21PM
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Straight Aces!

Everything looks super happy/healthy!

Palm in 4th pic(Robe?) is a show stopper!

Pardon my french-

wicked ass cool!

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 4:20PM
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brooklyngreg(7a NYC coastal plain)

Wow, you have a big collection and all in pots! I didn't realize palms or other tropicals can get so large in pots. I like the pictures - not pets to include:) lol.

With your location and a house you could grow cold tolerant palms and banana plants outside on the southside. There's cold weather bananas from Japan that would do great by you. Needle palms and tracky would be OKay. Maybe cover the tracky in icy weather - but your zone is a warm 7A or cold 7B?

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 4:32PM
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Great collection. I love that Blue Hawaii colocasia. A nursery near me had 3-4 different hybrids and I picked up all of them! Nicely done, looks like a great place to kick back and soak up some of the tropics!

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 11:09AM
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NoVaPlantGuy_Z7b_8a(Alexandria, VA 7B/8A)

Thank you everyone!

Alex, that Buddah Belly I have had for about 5 years now. Would you believe I got it at, of all places, IKEA! It was very small back then and has flourished. It has to be one of the easiest plants on the planet to take care of. The Plumies are pretty "unstable" and top heavy. I have to weight down the pots with very heavy rocks! LOL! Would love to see your singapore! Mine is about 12" or so tall and has put on quite a bit of new foliage since I got it several months ago. I just wish I knew which color it was. Singapores from what I have read up on them do fantastic in a very sunny south facing window, and do not lose their leaves during winter. It seems to put out lots of new leaves, but is fairly slow on the actual amount of height it adds, which is just fine by me! We are looking to go to the Tampa / St. Petersburg area. In specifically, St. Petersburg or somewhere in Pinellas co. It is going to be at least a year, maybe two before we do go though. Were still considering places. Wherever we do go though, it is going to be at least a zone 8B or higher. Preferably a zone 10.

Jim, thank you! That P. Roebelenii is my pride and joy. I LOVE that thing! One day my litter lone will get that large too. I just love the look of them, and I love how they really are "miniature trees".

Brooklynberg, I think you can do anything in pots if you treat it right! P. Roebelenii's can get large even in somewhat smaller containers, as can Sago Palms. If I actually owned this property, you bet I would have cold hardy palms put in!!! I already have a S. Minor in ground, and that Windmill in a pot outdoors all winter. I have been successful in getting Windmills to do just fine in pots here, with protection and some heating of the pot.

We are a warm 7b/ cold 8a here. We are in the middle of the urban heat island of Washington D.C., and we are very close to the tidal Potomac River, which also moderates our temps even on the coldest nights most of the time.

Thank you protempsfish! I love the Blue Hawaii! The petioles and leaf margins and veins are a striking dark purple. I plan on getting more Colocasia next spring for sure!

Thanks everyone!!!

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 12:57PM
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If you like colocasia's I have a colocasia 'elena' that is pupping like crazy. Before I bring them in for the winter I could probably send you one. They are really easy to grow.

Here is a link that might be useful: colocasia elena

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 2:03PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hey Ken,

As per the other post on the P Forum..."A Cool One" will be right on target...I'll take you up on that whenever I get up your way...I travel alot, sometimes to DC...Love that city!!! Especially King St.!!!

You know that I'm a big fan of your yard..."looking good in Old Town!!!"

Laura in VB

    Bookmark   August 28, 2010 at 2:00AM
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