Mid September 2013: Pics Around My Yard!

tropicalzone7(7b)September 18, 2013

It was another nice growing season in my yard. Some plants like my bananas have been really disappointing in terms of growth but other plants have done a lot better than I expected. Overall things are looking great and I have a lot of ideas for next year already.

Here are some pics!
My Crape Myrtle Tuscarora has been a really late bloomer this year (I planted it last fall), but it's nice to have some color this time of the year in the yard.

My Adondila recovered from being indoors really well. They actually seem to be surprisingly tolerant of going indoors during the winter.

My Bottle palm is pushing out its 3rd frond of the season. It's been a nice grower. I don't know what blue flowers are growing below it (I didn't plant it), but the butterflies are going crazy for it. I had 4 monarch butterflies hovering around the stairs the other day all at the same time!

Mandevillas are always really reliable growers and bloomers for me!

The Mandevilla in the backyard is really climbing

Another angle of the backyard Mandevilla with 2 of my plumerias included

I'm planning on redoing the front yard next year. I'm excited to have a lot more planting room to work with next season!

Night shot of the front yard tropicals

The pool area is looking good again this year. The Saba Banana to the very right has been growing incredibly slow though. I will not be planting bananas by the pool next season since they don't seem to like it there for some reason.

Night shot

The Hibiscus by the pool are now reaching about 8 feet tall! I got them from a good friend as tiny plants back around 2009.

The Hibiscus by the front yard have done incredibly well also this season. I brought them in last year and was not expecting them to do well when I planted them in one of the shadiest parts of my property.

Monsteras have always been one of my favorite tropicals. they are really easy indoors or out.

I made a succulent frame about a month ago and all the cuttings are nicely rooted and ready to go indoors in a few weeks! It was a cool project and I really liked the result.

Large view of the backyard

Night shot

My Favorite plumeria and plant in the yard. It was only a foot tall in March 2009, now it's a giant and a reliable bloomer!

My Adondila and 2 coconut palms.

My Thailand giant got some great growth this year considering it's in a pot. It will be in the ground next season so it should really take off!

My other really big elephant ear

Another wide shot of the backyard

My Ribbon palm is probably going in the ground next season.

My oleander is still blooming strong! This is the first year in the ground for this Oleander, my red one is going to go through it's 4th winter.

The red oleander still has some buds left on it too

My Spiral ginger grew a shoot about 6 feet tall just in the last 3 weeks. It's getting ready to bloom!

My Cast Iron plants that I left in pots did not make it through the winter this year, but my cast iron plants in the ground have been going on for 4 summers now without any damage during the winter without protection.

A last shot of the pool area with the moon vine flowers opening up for the night.

Thanks for looking!

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Beautiful plants and gorgeous plants! Question, how did you get your plumeria to be full of branches like that? Did you prune it a lot when you purchased it in 2009? I just purchased a plumeria that is in the shape of a "Y" a trunk with two branches and eventually (next spring) I'd like to get it to branch out and eventually create a canopy. Right now it's about 2 feet. Do they branch out on their own? or prune to create more branches?

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 8:34PM
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Thanks a lot Jack! My Plumeria branched out naturally on it's own, I haven't pruned it once since 2009 (and unfortunately I might have to prune it soon since it's getting impossible to fit through the door!). All plumerias will branch out once they bloom. The number of branches it makes after it blooms varies, but my plumerias all seem to consistently make 2 new branches after it's first bloom and then it varies from plant to plant after that. If you prune it, it will branch out, but it will delay blooming.

Good luck with your new plumeria and thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 8:59PM
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Great pics, as always. The adondia and plumeria give it that ultra tropical look. I especially love the night shot of the plumeria. You do a great job of hiding the pots to give a very natural feel. Is your plumeria in the ground? I would think it is very top heavy in a pot. If it is in the ground, how do you over winter it? That adondia looks heavy!!!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 9:54AM
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Thanks Brad! I try my best to hide whatever pots I can so the look is more convincing! The plumeria is actually in a pot. I re-potted it in August because it was so top heavy that even the multiple ropes I had holding it up couldn't keep it from leaning over. It's not as top heavy in it's new pot, but I do have some string tied to the pool fence to keep it in place just in case it's a windy day. The diameter and height of the new pot is about 3 feet, its a big pot, but it blends in really well where it is.
The Adondila is really heavy! Usually I drag it across the yard up to the stairs and after that I need some help because lifting it is one problem and then fitting it in the door is another. It's much easier to take it back out in the spring!
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   September 20, 2013 at 12:42AM
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prinbama(Alabama 7b-8a)

Simply Beautiful. Does your Spanish moss survive your temps ?

    Bookmark   September 21, 2013 at 7:01PM
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Thanks a lot prinbama! The Spanish moss does not usually survive the winter here. During a mild winter, I once did have a clump make it through alive (but the birds stole it in early spring). I'm going to try and over winter the spanish moss in my garage and if that doesn't work, I'll have to buy it over again in the spring! I might leave some outside just to test it out though.
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 12:24AM
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I have my Spanish Moss hanging in a small grove of Eastern Hemlock. It seems like this is enough of a microclimate to enable hem to persist through the winter. Those in the open, will not survive. It makes a BIG difference!

    Bookmark   September 25, 2013 at 6:35PM
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I don't think that they stand a chance on bare trees around here during the winter, but in a nice microclimate and on evergreens, they probably could manage to hang in during a nice winter. Is this your first year with spanish moss or have they already survived a winter?
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   September 26, 2013 at 3:11PM
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Great yard! Looks like somewhere in the Caribbean. Are ribbon palms hardy? Are Alocasia easy to overwinter? I've only grown colocasia.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2013 at 8:55PM
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JohnnieB(Washington, DC 7a/b)

Everything looks great, but what on earth do you do with everything in the fall? It must be a huge amount of work to put it all to bed for the winter!

    Bookmark   September 26, 2013 at 9:15PM
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Thanks a lot islandbreeze! Ribbon palms are probably about as cold hardy as Chinese fan palms and I have gotten my Chinese fan palm through 3 winters with protection. They lose most of their foliage from the cold, but grow back in no time. When I saw a ribbon palm at home depot for only $15 at that size, I had to get it! Hopefully it will be reasonably cold hardy. They are really fast growing.
Alocasias are just as easy to keep in my experience as colocasias and are a lot more rewarding since they get noticably bigger every year (My colocasias have kind of maxed out in height now).

Thanks John! It's a ton of work to bring everything inside. I don't even want to think about it yet even though I will probably start taking things inside starting in another 2 weeks or so (I would wait longer, but it's impossible to take everything in at the very end of the season).

Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   September 26, 2013 at 10:53PM
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Alex, this is the most beautiful, extensive and convincing residential tropical garden I have ever seen photos of (way!) outside of the tropics. Truly stunning. Some of the shots of the pool area, especially, I could swear were taken at some quaint resort in the FL Keys or the Caribbean. The variety is amazing and I think what makes it so convincing is that many of the shots feature all tropical species. I cannot imagine the work involved in creating and maintaining this. Your home's interior must be very lush from November-April. Also, nice Adonidia. I could go on...

    Bookmark   September 26, 2013 at 11:55PM
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Thanks a lot William! I appreciate the compliments! I'm definitely aiming for that Florida Keys look! I love the way that lots of homes there fit in tons of nice tropical plants in a relatively small space! I have tons of ideas for next year and it will definitely include more tropical plants! I need to figure out better ways to store the plants indoors because I am very quickly running out of space!

Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 12:35PM
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