A cold spring

We’ve been having an extraordinarily cold spring this year. Usually I’ve recorded a day or two above 70 degrees by Valentine’s Day. This year, we have yet to reach that sort of warmth.

This weekend we may finally see some warmth! Some of the plants are starting to show signs that they are ready to start growing. A few weeks ago I got a few clumping bamboo so I could block an ugly air conditioning unit. I’m not completely sure of what the bamboo is, but I’m thinking it’s Fargesia robusta or F nitida. Probably robusta. F rufa is a pretty common clumping bamboo around here, but the height and upright manner of the canes doesn’t scream F rufa to me.

This garden bed has just been dug out. The entire space was carpeted in a thick layer of weeds.

In front of the alleged Fargesia, I plan on placing a few Melinus nerviglumis Ruby Grass. They won’t be nearly as tall as the bamboo, but they’ll provide year round interest. Low maintenance plants are great!

More freshly expanded beds in the front. I don’t mind a little bit of grass up here, but less is more, in my opinion.
People love rhododendrons around here. It’s hard to find a garden without one. The same goes for camellias. The miniature rhody in front will have purple blooms, but the large one behind it is still a mystery. The pots to (from left to right) contain a tiny Chusquea gigantea, Magnolia macrophylla, and Indocalamus tessellatus. Tucked in between the pots is a new Cordyline australis ‘Red Star’.
What kind of gardener would I be if I didn’t have Phormium tenax? I had to get one. It’s leaning a little bit from a monumental windstorm a few days ago.
The Meyer Lemon has been on the front porch for a while. Unfortunately the windstorm a few days ago blew 90% of the leaves off! Luckily the lemons stayed put. They are just about ready to pick. What better way to enjoy spring than homemade lemonade!
Another new C australis ‘Red Star’ on the other side of the front porch steps. In a few years, if I’m lucky, they should be much larger and more impressive. Next to it in the pot is a Cyathea cooperi (Scaly Tree Fern). While it stays rainy outside, it is perfectly placed. The gutter above drips right into it’s pot.

This tree fern is pretty fast growing, as far as tree ferns go. It doesn’t have much of a trunk right now, but if I can keep it happy it’ll start looking prehistoric soon. There are two trunks forming, and several hairy fronds unfurling on each trunk. Fortunately, the bamboo tepee I have over the fern kept most of the fronds from breaking during last week’s windstorm.

My name for this Epiphyllum hybrid ‘Fantasie’ is Hank. It looks like a big red octopus, waving it’s arms in the breeze. Currently I count 9 buds, getting ready to put on a display of bright orange/red.
The Trichocereus grandiflorus (or Echinopsis grandiflora depending on who you ask) hybrid is getting closer to blooming too. This bud has doubled in size in the last week or so.
I found another flower bud on one of the pups! Maybe they’ll get pollinated, and I can get some seeds. Then… only another decade before I have more cacti this size!

There is only a week left before the greenhouse is due to be built. I can hardly wait, and my temporary houseplants are straining at their roots. They want to be in the ground!

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