Monday, August 8, 2011

Summer's in full swing...don't blink!

Looking at the picture above, I see nasturtiums taking over the world, bamboo flopping over trying to shade out the pumpkins, diseased apples on a puny apple tree, and lima beans that are never going to ripen. Yet in a few months, when solar days are shorter than work days and the high temperature outside is roughly the same as the temperature in my refrigerator, I will probably look back on this picture and think "those were the good old days". So it is...never satisfied.

Most non-horticultural people will probably look at this plant and think "what kind of weed is that?" Well, it's the kind of weed where Tequila comes from - a blue agave or Agave tequilana. It stays outside for the summer, and I keep it bone-dry inside for the winter (Nov-April).

Speaking of blue plants, my Melianthus major (honey bush) is in bloom right now. It definitely helps contribute to the subtropical aura of this area of the garden. You can see the blue agave on the right.

Any beginning gardener interested in growing spiky plants in the Pacific Northwest can't go wrong by planting Yucca filamentosa (Adam's needle). It doesn't die - regardless of how cold, wet, dark, windy or miserable it gets. As you can see in the picture, its inflorescence is very attractive. Note: This is not the same yucca that they make yuca chips out of (yuca with one c = yum; yucca with two c's = yuck!). giant pumpkin in the making. I've clipped off all the other pumpkins and feed it lots 'o Miracle-Gro whenever I get the chance. We'll see how it does.....

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