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Sunday, September 28, 2014

A view from above

Here's a pic from my second floor windows of the backyard. 

My plumeria looks just about as wide as it is tall. It does not make it easy to bring inside! 

Still hanging on to some tropical blooms even as we head into October. 

Here's an up high view of the plants in the front yard 

Close up of the washingtona and castor bean 

And here's just a few ground level pictures of the front yard. 

I can't imagine any other plants looking as nice in these planters as dragon wing begonias do. 

Thanks for looking!!

I love taking pictures with a camera flash!

Some people love it and some people hate it, but I really like the way pictures come out with a flash on my camera. It shows things more intensely than you would see under normal everyday light conditions. It's not necessarily representative of what you see in the yard, but it everything it shows exists.

So here's a few night pics I took tonight of the yard with a flash on.

Pool area looking nice

You can really see the brugmansia blooms looking their finest at night.

This picture didn't have a flash on. I thought the blue pool light made a cool effect with the blue flowers on the plant. 

I love spanish moss with a flash. 

Sunny Wind Hibiscus 

Cassia flowers in the foreg

Plumeria and spanish moss at night. 

Adondila palm with a lot of other assorted plants. 

Passiflora Berkley sharing a pot with my solandra maxima. The Passiflora is in it's second summer. 

I love taking closeups of this flower. 

Saturday, September 27, 2014

A quick look at the backyard

Here's the pool area. My brugmansia still has at least one more nice flush of blooms left in it! The ginger is definitely going to try and steal the show while all the foliage plants like my Colocasia, Alocasias, and Cannas are also looking there best now. 

My plumeria is looking nice and full. I love the curves on it's trunk, definitely not a look that most plumerias can achieve in my climate. 

Nothing like the late afternoon sun to highlight the spanish moss on the tree. 

I saw this moon flower open up right before my eyes. It was so incredible, it made a noise like when you are turning the page of a book. You can also get a peek of my Philodendron Xandu in this pic. 

An attempt to take a picture of my buried palms. 

A cool looking bloom head on my Butterfly Hedychium Ginger. 

Wide angle pool view

A different perspective on the Plumeria

The pool area plants from the gazebo 

My favorite palm tree of all time. It's definitely a commonly sold one here so it's not too special in that sense, but this is the 3rd year I've had it and while most of my tropicals start to look a little tired after being potted up for that long, this palm tree looks better than it did when I got it!

Another beautiful palm and one I like just as much as my Adondila is my Bottle palm. It's been around for 2 summers now and it's definitely a favorite of mine. It's doing well despite the change in seasons becoming more noticeable now! 

I really like this area also. Much better than it's been in past years. I finally found a nice combination of plants to bring color to one of the shadier spots in my yard (but it still gets intense late afternoon sun during the summertime)

Here's what you see when you first walk into the backyard! That path you see eventually leads into the front yard. 

Thanks for looking! I hope you enjoyed!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Plumera "Scott Pratt" SOOOOOOO CLOSE to blooming.

I've been waiting for this beautiful plumeria to bloom all summer and I have been watching it grow since Laura, a friend of mine with an incredible plumeria collection, gave me a cutting from hers in August 2010. Well the blooms just started opening, but unfortunately it's just not hot enough this time of the year (and I think the cooler nights are the biggest problem) for the blooms to open up properly. Oh well, maybe I will keep them under a grow light indoors this winter just so I can give it a head start to spring. 

Plants by the garage

These plants don't get much TLC but they look like they do. My Colocasia Mojito is doing incredibly well in this spot. I guess it must really love the sun exposure.

Canna "Robert Kemp" bloom. This one survived by pretending to be a Ginger root since I usually keep my Cannas outside during the winter but this winter killed them, but one bulb snuck in with the gingers!

And a different angle from the front yard...

Just the Palms

Here are a couple of pics of just my palm trees. As the tropical plants start to fade, the hardy palms will definitely become the star of the show again, but only until it gets really cold and they have to be covered up.

Here is my first year with my Mexican Fan Palm (Washingtonia robusta). The plan is to protect it with a frost cloth and garbage bin anytime temperatures are forecasted to drop below 28F. I will make sure to put christmas lights on under that protection whenever temperatures drop below 25F. It's still young so I want to make sure it doesn't see too much cold.

My Sabal minor is no stranger to cold after the protection on it failed during the coldest night of the year last winter (3F). It was damaged pretty badly since it seems to be more tender than other minors, but it's also faster growing than most other minors and has fully recovered.

My European Fan Palm saw the same cold as my Sabal minor. It was completely defoliated but it surprised me by surviving! It hasn't made a full recovery yet, but it looks really good and is definitely ready for another winter (hopefully the protection won't fail this year!)

My Livistona and Trachys are completely covered in tropical plants, but they will be visible again after we get our first hard frost in about 2 months.

The Adondila palm is enjoying it's last few weeks outdoors. It will head indoors around October. Its getting big so hopefully it fits through the door this year!

My bottle palm will be going inside soon also. It looks like it will try opening up one more frond this season, making it 2 fronds for the season.