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Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Foliage Follow-Up September 2013

Each month after Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day,  Pam at Digging hosts Foliage Follow up to help us remember the importance of foliage in our gardens. 

Here's some of the foliage that caught my eye in my garden today. 


Musa basjoo.  I've never protected these in any way but now that the trees around them have grown and made this spot a little shadier than it used to be, it takes the banana a lot longer to attain height in a season when it's killed to the ground.  Jennifer says that the Old Farmers' Almanac is predicting a colder than normal winter this year.  Sure hope that they're wrong.  Maybe this year the banana should get a little protection.

This foliage makes a former Alaska gardener feel like he's deep in the tropics. 

Gosh, it's swell to garden here!

 
Manihot grahamii  or hardy tapioca is supposed to be hardy to zone 7 but winter has killed it a couple of times for me.  I'm thinking that this little one, still in it's pot will need to come in for its first winter.  Have you had success with winter survival of this plant in a soggy zone 8 climate?  The way the wind plays with this foliage is pretty sweet!

Acacia dealbata is also still in a pot but they aren't always easy to find round these parts.  Probably will need to be pulled in during the coldest months, too.
Phytolacca americana 'silberstein'  Can't wait until those seed heads turn deep burgundy and the stems turn magenta.  Hope to get lots of seed from this and see if I can grow more!
 
A stalwart and year round presence in my garden are the small conifers.  (Oh to have space for a backdrop of  towering cedars and doug firs!)  Lots of them live in pots and get shifted into large planters outside when the brugmansias and tender bananas come inside for the winter.    Here are Chamaecyparis lawsoniana 'Van Pelt's Blue' (my favorite of the blues and surprisingly hard to find.) and 4ever gold arborvitae.  The latter would be much more gold in color if it got more sun.
 
I hope you join in the celebration of foliage and post images of your favorite foliage!

27 comments:

  1. Nice! I especially love the foliage of your Phytolacca americana. Lovely!

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    1. Thank you Tatyana, that's one of my favorite foliage plants (aren't they all?)

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  2. I hope the 'Old farmers' are wrong ,I'll have big gaps in the garden otherwise. I must look out for the Manihot !

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    1. Cantankerous old farmers are just trying to scare us! I got the Manihot at Cistus.

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    2. I just bookmarked that Manihot this morning "to buy," so I'm bummed it might not be hardy. I'll have to give it a pep talk in the fall.

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  3. I do not want a harsh winter either. You have some beautiful foliage there. I hope you have success growing the variegated pokeweed from seed.

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    1. Well if you and I agree it should be so! Or as Captain Picard would say, "Make it so, Number One."

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  4. Where did you find the Manihot? Oh heck the Acacia dealbata too? Love them both.

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    1. Manihot came from Cistus and the Acacia dealbata came fro Jungle fever. (J.F. may still have some - one gallon pots 20 bucks) If you want I could get one for you, take it to Alison and she could bring it to the plant swap.

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  5. Lots of beautiful foliage in your garden. We all seem to be drooling over the Manihot (of course: what gardener doesn't love a challenge).

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    1. The folks at Cistus and at Plant Delights both say that it's hardy to zone 8 but also makes a nice potted plant to be brought inside anywhere north of that. Since mine is still in its nursery pot, it'll come inside this year.

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  6. Wow!! many of my favorite foliage plants!! those Musa are soooooo awesome and big! Manihot grahamii, I love it! I like the Acacia too... I had never seen Phytolacca americana 'silberstein', really nice colors!!

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    1. Thank you Lisa. I'm so lucky to live in this climate where all of those plants are hardy.

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  7. Call me a wimp...I still get nervous when I see Pokeweed in people's gardens...once burned... ;-)

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    1. I've been cutting down the monster Pokeweed in my parking strip to make room for more interesting plants. 'Silberstein' seems very polite. I've had it for five years and still haven't gotten any offspring from it.

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    1. My pleasure! Thanks for coming to the party.

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  9. That first image looks like a watercolor painting -- just stunning!

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  10. WOW!!! I am sooo in love with your acacia dealbata. They are a personal favourite. And you are right about the alaska gardener feeling like the deep tropics. This has been such a great year for bananas. Your yard looks stunning!!! I could never tire of your photos.

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  11. Love all the texture and varying shades of green in your garden. It reminds me of when we lived in Florida. :)

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    1. Interesting that you moved from Florida to New England. Many folks do the opposite. Look at you bucking the trend! The nice thing about living here is that we never have to endure the humidity or heat of Florida!

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  12. The abutilon looks like a sting of Christmas lights against the tropical banana leafs. Wonderful shot.
    I lover dwarf conifers myself. Did you ever visit the South Seattle community college arboretum? They have a terrific rock/conifer garden that is maturing nicely. Worth a visit. No matter how cold winter gets the conifers will make it just fine.

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    1. Thanks for telling me about the SSCC arboretum. I didn't know that it existed but will make a point of visiting one of these days. Sounds like it might be an interesting garden to visit in the winter!

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  13. Lovely as always. I am unfamiliar with Phytolacca americana 'silberstein.' Gorgeous foliage and seeds.

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    1. It's a variegated pokeweed. The stems turn pink so it may need to find a home in your garden.

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Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your thoughts.