"Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty, and generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity. " ~Lindley Karstens

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Something Old, Something New

Have been quite busy recently at work...   Meanwhile my garden has been enjoying the afternoon showers, and putting lots of colors to welcome fall season.  Although Fall in Florida is almost same as the summer, only with cooler mornings and evenings, and shorter days.

Let me show you something that caught my eyes recently... Something old, and something new...

I had purchased two ground orchids after our hard freeze days in January, the pink one has been blooming profoundly for a couple of months now. 

The dark pink one just started their show recently, but with stronger flower spikes and slightly bigger flowers.

This yellow one was a recent purchase. The color was so bright that it almost jumped out and shouted to me in the gardening center "Hello, bring me home!". How could I resist it?

I have heard from other Florida gardeners that ground orchids are not cold-hardy, so I will dig them out and bring them indoors if it ever reaches the freezing  point again this coming winter (oh no, please). 

This desert rose (Adenium obesum ) has been a great performer since early spring.   In my experience, this is such a carefree plant in the container.  Drought tolerant, and heat/humidity lover.  As long as you don't over water it, and bring it under the covered patio or indoor during the freezing days, this plant will reward you lots of flowers through the four seasons in Florida climate.
 My friend gave me some desert rose seeds, see what I got out of them!  Looks like more desert roses will reside in my garden!

My first Indian Blanket (Gaillardia pulchella) flower!  I planted the seeds in the spring, after a long waiting, finally it opened its first flower this past weekend.  I am counting on them for my winter garden color.

Another one of the garden firsts is on the way...   This frangipani (Plumeria) was started from a cutting early this year, now finally it shows its first bud.  Yay! At least I can see the flowers before it drops all the leaves in the winter.

This Bridal Bouquet (Plumeria pudica) is also a new resident in my garden.  I have seen this blooming beautifully with bountiful snow white flowers in the neighbourhood, and think it would look great in my garden too.  It has three of them in the container, and I planted them in the ground in a tri-angle setting, hoping they can form a nice cluster next year.  For now, I will just enjoy the flowers from this young plant.

Firespike (Odontonema strictum) also bloomed first time in the garden (wow, there seems lots of  "firsts" in the garden recently).  The scarlet flowers rise above the dark green foliage look so stunning.  No wonder it has another common name as "Scarlet Flame".   I am thinking to use this replacing some of boring hedges in my garden.  Butterflies and hummingbirds would love it too!


 Vinca (Periwinkle) is always one of my favorites, and blooms almost year around.  I put two of the self seedlings into this swan planter, and one chooses growing around the neck of the swan, and the other trails down.  I thought this looks very pretty especially I did not arrange them in that way on purpose.

Just bought this Rose of Sharon (Althea, Hibiscus syriacus) last week.  This flower seems have distorted, but the skipper doesn't mind it at all.

When the flowers are fully opened...

There are so many to do and enjoy in the garden. With the approaching cooler weather, I wish I can have more time to be in my garden.


  1. You have some lovely colour in your garden, It is nice to have a pretty garden to greet you when you get home. I have never seen yellow ground orchids - they are very pretty. the butterflies love that firespike in my garden - it can get a bit untidy looking though I suppose you could prune it back.

  2. Hi Ami, the ground orchids look spectacular, love the colours. for me it is always special to introduce new plants into my garden. Some also take sometimes leave without me noticing.
    Love all the plants you have in your garden. My desert rose took leave too one wet winter. Now I have a new small plant. They are slow growing or is it just mine?

  3. What lovely blooms you have to greet you when you come home from work. I've never seen the yellow ground orchids, and they are lovely. I'm waiting on my purple one to send up flower spikes this year.

    Enjoy all the beauty you have surrounding you Ami.


  4. Fantastic residents and newcomers! Yes, please guard your ground orchids. Mine flowered beautifully until last winter's frosts. The foliage has come back, but is still small...and no flower spikes. Sigh! Hopefully they're just making a slow recovery and will show in vigor next year.

    I really like your vinca in your swan, too. Very romantic!

  5. I always love seeing your pink ground orchid. Now, you have more in even more colors. Your red firespike looks quite happy in your garden. I have been seeing a hummingbird visit mine the past few weeks. Keep an eye out for one to visit yours. The firespike dies to the ground every winter here but grows back quickly.

  6. Hmmm... My ground orchids were burnt back horribly, with only my half-hearted attempts at protection (i.e., a pillowcase). However, they have sprouted back with lush leaf growth, though I've not seen a single bloom spike this year (yet). Anyway, I think you're in a much warmer spot than I am. Then there's those plumerias. Still waiting for first buds of the year on mine. I'm beginning to fear it won't happen. I've had those in the ground several years, but this winter nearly destroyed them! I had a good dozen P. pudicas last year, and only one survived the freeze. I did not protect any of them though. I had two P. rubras survive, possibly thanks to the pillowcases, once again, though they ended up wet and soggy from those winter rains we got.

  7. Africanaussie: This is also my first time to see yellow ground orchids. I think the pink and purple ones are more common type. Yes, I think firespike can use some prunning to keep it tidy :)

  8. Titania: I think the only thing that desert rose does not like is wetness. Yes, it is slow growing, and I still keep it in the original container when I bought it one year ago. I heard it loves a little root bounding any way.

  9. Flowerlady: This yellow ground orchid has real pretty color that I could not resist :) I am sure your purple one will set up the flower spike soon, once they do, they seem tp send lots of them at the same time!

  10. Kimberly: Let's all hope this year we can have a mild winter, so lots of plants won't suffer a big setback, and expect lots of blooms next year! But I WILL guard my ground orchids if I have to! lol

  11. NanaK: My neighbour across the street has three big firespike bushes in their front yard, and the past winter seemed have not damaged them too much. But thanks for reminding, maybe to have it as privacy hedge is not very good idea in case it ever gets killed to the ground.

  12. FG: Hmmm, seems I need to collect more pillowcases now! lol

    I dreaded thinking about the winter since this would be the first winter after I have a considerable amounts of plants. Last year I really did not have many plants since I just started it. If digging out is possible, I will do it! That yellow ground orchid is a must for it to be indoor. Hope by then, it has multiplied more, so that I can have more divisions when pot it up :)

    Ooh, now you made me start worrying my P. pudicas as well in the winter. I guess that I did not think much about "cold-hardy" when I made all those recent purchases. Sigh. A lesson so easy to forget!

  13. That skipper was eager! I love the color of that dark pink orchid. Everything as usual, looks wonderful!

  14. Oh, Ami, those ground orchids are making me drool. No blooms on mine yet this year. I guess I should be glad they have green on them since they took such a hard hit in the winter.

    That vinca knew just how to grow around your pretty swan container. And your rose of sharon is beautiful. All your blooms are bright and cheery in your late summer garden!

  15. love your ground orchids.
    I have been keeping one for years but never seemed to flower.
    Wonder whether I got the non-flowering type.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...