Late October blooms

I’d like to share two blooms today… one of which I never thought I’d see in my own garden. This year started unusually early, and stayed warm and dry for much longer than usual. This coaxed plants into doing things they normally don’t do, I believe. This fall I have high hopes for the tree dahlias, the fiber bananas, and some of the gingers.

On an average year, the Hedychium coccineum ‘Tara’ will bloom with large orange spikes starting in July or August. This year was no exception. I early October, I noticed a bud poking out of what was labeled Hedychium coccineum, which has never bloomed before. This ginger is very hardy in my experience, having taken 10 degree temperatures in stride when we had a particularly bad winter. The early summer, paired with a mild winter last year, has proved enough for it. It started blooming a few days ago. The only problem is that I don’t think it was labeled correctly when I bought it. The blooms are white!

I am guessing, but I think it is more likely an H. coronarium than coccineum. Some people may ask what the difference is, as long as it grows well. Luckily for you, I am not that type of person. I have another Hedychium spp just a few feet away that has a big flower bud poking out of the top. That one was labeled Hedychium ‘Luna Moth’. If and when it blooms, I’ll compare the two to make sure they aren’t the same. I don’t know what I’d do…

The next bloom is from Passiflora ‘Lady Margaret’. Supposedly one of the easier red passionfruits, it has proved to be a thirsty plant. Too much sun, and it would wilt under the heat. It is a neat one, though.

I’m a big fan of passionfruits, or at least the plants themselves. I have yet to eat one of the fruits, but I hear they are good. Maybe next year I will try one, since I didn’t get any fruit to set this year.

Last but not least is a no-name pink brugmansia that managed to survive last winter and put out a few blooms. It is about 5 feet tall, and has beaten the odds. I have had no other pink or red brugmansias survive the winter here. I’ve named this one Survivor.

I hope the next post that I write has tree dahlia blooms in it!

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