Ruth Bancroft Garden in February 2015
Sorry it took me the better part of a week to post more pictures from my visit to the Ruth Bancroft Garden last Saturday but I had 200+ photos to go through. You’d think that after having been there so many times I’d run out of things to photograph, but the garden—like any garden—is ever changing and the dedicated staff is always redoing beds and adding more plants.
Let’s start outside the entrance. This is the first thing visitors see, yet once they’ve parked their car they’re so overwhelmed by the garden proper that most of them don’t step back outside to take a closer look at these plantings.
The yellow-flowering bush is Sedum dendroideum
Agave salmiana var. ferox ‘Variegata’ (aka ‘Butterfinger’). Yikes, this is what the 1-gallon plant I just purchased at the RBG could turn into if planted in the ground. Unless a large space opens up somewhere in my garden, my ‘Butterfinger’ will remain in a pot.
Aloe × ramossisima
Now let’s move inside the wall and wend our way through the garden. Here is a handy map for reference. My photos aren’t in any particular order, but chances are that’s how you experience the garden.
Agave salmiana. Note how wavy some of the leaves are.
Aloe wickensii (often clumped together with Aloe cryptopoda, which has all-red flowers)
Aloe wickensii. Aren’t the flowers stunning?
Yucca ‘Tiny Star’ and Cephalophyllum ‘Red Spike’
Leucospermum ‘Scarlet Ribbon’, the same pincushion hybrid I bought
Study in silver and green
I believe the blooming shrub is Senna artemisioides
Agave havardiana × Agave gigantensis
Variegated Agave parryi
Hechtia texensis. I’ve been looking for one for years. Why are they so rare? They’re from Texas, for crying out loud!
Agave colorata × Agave parrasana hybrid. The plant behind it is Xanthorrhoea nana, one of the Australian grass trees. This dwarf species will form a short trunk (to 2 ft.) over time.
Aloe ‘Hellskloof Bells’, a hybrid between Aloe distans and Aloe pearsonii, created by Brian Kemble in 1991. Check out the stunning flowers here.
Newly planted area
This Leucadendron is still small and not that impressive yet, but it will be over time. I’m so happy to see more and more southern hemisphere shrubs at the RBG.
Every time I visit the RBG, I have visions of sitting at one of these tables, but so far I never have
Agave ovatifolia, Pedilanthus macrocarpus, and Aechmea species
Aloe distans creeping along the ground, as it’s wont to do
Echeverias tucked between the rocks
…and more flowering aloes
The purple flowering plant in the foreground is Eromophila hygrophana from Western Australia
One of several metal arches, a relatively recent addition
Unlabeled aloe species
Aloe ‘Who Knows What It Is’
Another metal arch
Aloe capitata var. quartziticola with its very distinctive flowers
Aloe capitata var. quartziticola
Aloe capitata var. quartziticola
I find ice plants very difficult to identify. This, and the plant below, could be so many things. I won’t even attempt an ID.
Variegated yucca, possibly ‘Bright Star’
Yep, this is a photographer’s paradise
Central bed with winter covering
Aloe capitata var. quartziticola (left), Agave gypsophila (right)
Unknown flowering aloe
Agave attenuata ‘Variegata’ with winter damage—even the protective plastic over the central bed was able to prevent this. Agave attenuata is so tender, I wonder why any of us even bother!
Leucadendron ‘Ebony’. This is the largest specimen of this hybrid I’ve ever seen. I was particularly thrilled to see two inflorescences.
Leucadendron ‘Ebony’ inflorescence. Fantastic coloration!
Aloe arborescens, with the nursery visible in the background
Another inviting spot to sit, surrounded by Aloe arborescens