Sights in the garden that make me feel better

With everything going on in the world and no light yet at the end of the long dark tunnel that is COVID-19, it's a challenge to stay positive. Fortunately, things are a little easier for us gardeners. Sheltering in place, we can quickly step outside and find, if not comfort, then at least distraction in the environment we've created. It may not sound like much, but for me, it's huge. Within a few minutes, I'm usually able to refocus.

Here are some vignettes that caught my eye today:

Vriesea fosteriana 'Red Chestnut'

Wider view of this vriesea and the motley crew it hangs out with

Agave salmiana var. ferox 'Mediopicta'

These nasturtiums are descendants of the original plants that were here when we bought the house 20+ years ago. They reseed freely, wherever they want, and I usually let them have their way. As soon as it gets hot, they deteriorate, and I remove them.

This small sitting area is outside the dining room slider

Fernleaf lavender (Lavandula multifida) is a joy throughout the year, but it really comes into its own starting late winter. Behind it on the right is a newly planted 'Instant Karma' elderberry (Sambucus nigra 'Instant Karma').

Bamboo iris (Iris confusa 'Chengdu')

This planter is next to the garage door. It's in the full shade all day. I recently planted this Asparagus setaceus in front of the “Ball Weed” metal sculptures by Red Grass Designs.

The largest of four Dioon edule we have. I moved it a couple of weekends ago from the bed next to the driveway.

Hippeastrum papilio, an amaryllis relative from Brazil This year, we have five flower stalks. I just wish the leaves were a little more ornamental.

I've posted many photos of this vignette before, but it really is one of my favorite spots in the bed along the sidewalk

Grevillea 'King's Fire' not slowing down

Ditto for Grevillea 'Bonnie Prince Charles'

Aloe marlothii #2, flowering for the first time ever

Graptoveria 'Fred Ives', one of several offsets Hoover Boo (Piece of Eden) gifted me a few years ago. It looks great in front of Felicia aethiopica ‘Tight and Tidy’.

Two Aloe hereroensis 

Hechtia argentea never fails to cheer me up

Calliandra californica, Salvia hierosolymitana, and Eucalyptus macrocarpa

Eucalyptus macrocarpa and Salvia hierosolymitana

Look at the many flower buds on the multiple claret cactus (Echinocereus sp.) in this bowl, which I redid recently

Hechtia 'Dorothy' (Hechtia argentea x tillandsioides)

Hechtia stenopetala

I'll post more vignettes in the days to come as home confinement continues.

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  1. Wow. Loved the tour. Thanks for sharing.

  2. What a beautiful setting to shelter in place. Several wonderful vignettes but the bamboo iris really caught my eye. Cold but at least sunny here this morning. Lots of hoar frost so I too went out and took some shots that caught my eye. Look forward to seeing the claret cactus blooms.

  3. You've got a lot to love there. I was intrigued by the elderberry but Sunset tells me I wouldn't have a chance of growing it here and, while I often ignore the cold hardiness zones, I pay more attention to Sunset. Your Bamboo Iris looks great and has me thinking mine needs more sun. Best wishes weathering your confinement, Gerhard!

    1. We've had a couple of 'Black Lace' elderberries for years and they have thrived. There are plenty of Mexican elderberries (Sambucus cerulea) along the greenbelt, and they're huge. Have you tried any Sambucus?

      Iris confusa took a few years to get going. It's looking really good this year.

  4. Thanks for the wander around your garden, it was almost as good as being there! The bromeliads are all looking quite smashing.

    1. I'm really happy with how well these bromelias overwintered. Of course this was the mildest winter in memory...

  5. Totally agree with the garden being a life saver of sanity. Thanks Gerhard for the wonderful images of your garden. Diana Hilltop

    1. You're very welcome. Sharing photos is another way of staying sane.

  6. Love your garden and makes me happy too! Thanks!

  7. Thanks for posting! I miss going to plant club meetings and garden visits/sales.April is usually a jam packed month.Being able to see others plants and gardens helps.


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