Best Blooms of Spring and Summer 2021

Happy first day of Autumn! I am so excited that Fall/Autumn is here because the weather will be cooler and it is a great time to start planting or moving plants. It is also a time for cleaning up the yard since the whole summer was spent watering plants!!!

I was thinking la few weeks ago that this year has not been a good flowering year for my garden. I felt a lot of things didn’t take off as well as I had hoped. Looking through my collection of pictures this past spring and summer, I was surprised to see that I DID have an incredible garden this year! This post is showing the best of the blooms in spring and summer.

Spring Blooms

Summer Blooms

That’s all of my favorites for spring and summer! I hope it was a fascinating post for you too! I love looking at all these pictures and this would be a great photo album for years to come.

Summer Blooms

Rosella’s Dream Lily

Rosella is a beautiful light pink lily. It had three large flowers on a short 12-inch branch, maybe because it is only in its first year of bloom.

Shrimp Plant

This Shrimp plant is very unique and tolerates heat and dryness well. I have seen them grown in masses on the streets. I like how they look so I purchased them years ago to fill my garden. The flowers are soft and feathery and look like shrimps.

China Asters

I grew a mix of China Asters this year and so far I have many beautiful colors. A few blogs ago I showed them in purple, white, and dark pink. I don’t know much about asters but I love how they grow to have so many pretty flowers!

Poppy or Mantisalca Salmantica

I thought this was a poppy but I cannot find proof in my seeds collection that this is a poppy. I used a plant identification App and was identified as being similar to this Mantisalca. I can tell you that it is heat tolerant and has many beautiful blooms.

Red Courtesan Sunflowers

Just a beautiful red color! I love these sunflowers!

Plumbago

I love plumbagos for its drought tolerance and beautiful flowers. It blooms in clusters in the summer. It is great to grow as a privacy hedge since it fills up and out very quickly .

Amaranth

This new amaranth sprouted in the same location that I planted several last year. It must have reseeded. The ones from last year had their leaves munched up by some creatures. These are edible leaves to humans too. Somehow this perfect little amaranth was unscathed. I love red leaves in plants, so striking in the garden!

Daylily

Beautiful yellow daylily to end the blog! Have a great weekend!

Interesting Mix of Flowers

A few new varieties this week that I haven’t shown before and there are some old favorites as well.

I am what I call a haphazard gardener. I say that because I don’t usually plan where my plants go. I don’t have a garden design plan. I know all the gardening books always suggest gardeners have them but I don’t. I just haphazardly plant them wherever I think I have room for them. Now that is crazy and dangerous so don’t do what I did or you may end up with a beautiful jungle! The worst part of it is I don’t keep track of the names of plants that I grow either. I really should because that would make it easier for me to identify most of my plants. I did try looking up the names of the plants below but a few were in a mix so it is hard to get the exact names. All I can say is just enjoy them for their beautiful colors and forms.

Poppies

The poppies below were grown in a seed starting tray. At some point I had plant labels but it either got lost or the words faded away so it is difficult to know who is who here. This one below is incredibly CUTE with its lavender and white colors. I have never seen one like this before and I really love it.

The bee and its white poppy!

This looks to be the Shirley Double Poppy seeds.

Thai Silk Rose Poppy with its ruffled pink, cream, and orange colors

Four O’clocks

These Four O’clock plants are sprouting everywhere and normally I would oppose such invasions in the garden but these plants produced such beautiful, abundant flowers. Below is one of my favorite colors. I have a bright pink one in my yard too but I didn’t get a chance to get pictures for this post. This was grown from seeds and it has grown so big. The bush below is about 3 feet tall.

Kirigami Ornamental Oregano

This ornamental kirigami oregano is the cutest little thing! I love the different shades of lavender, pink and green. It flowered happily when I had it in the ground a few years ago but after I moved it into a pot it has been kind of lackluster! I was lucky this time to get some nice colors here.

liLY TREES

I love lilies! I’ve had these the year before and they are coming back again this year with double the blooms and height. These have a lovely fragrance.

Nicotiana Lime Green

These are really lovely lime green flowers. It would look great with any groups of flowers in the yard, a nice accent.

Dianthus

Sweet Potato Vine Green

This potato vine is one of the few potato vines that have colors. I love these groundcovers. They have potatoes growing out at the roots but they are not edible.

DAYLILY

Columbine

That’s all for now! I will have some new flowers to share next week!

Dahlias, Lilies, and Poppies

I’m so excited about this post because it is about three of my favorite flowers: dahlias, lilies, and poppies.  Many of my dahlias are not fully grown yet since I planted them only a few weeks ago. They seem to be taking a long time growing, maybe I am just impatient.

The other slow grower is the poppy plants. I started seeds in February and they are starting to flower now. Although they are slow, I love seeing them flower. It is always spectacular!

Now, lilies are fast growers and I planted them a month or so ago. They are easy to grow in poor soil and hot conditions like we have here in Southern California.

DAHLIAS

LILIES

POPPIES

Amazing Orange

I don’t normally like to grow orange flowers but some of these were from a discounted “mix” pack in seeds or bulbs. One thing I’ve learned is never to buy a “mix” of any plant offerings online unless you don’t mind getting ugly colors. I didn’t know that so I bought several of daylily mixes and I got a bunch of bright orange that I would’ve never purchased had I known.

However, now that I have them, I learned to like them since I raised them from pups. They stand out in my garden of pinks and purples.

Now this Big Kiss White Flame Hybrid Gazania (what a mouthful) is actually one that I picked out on a seed website.  Have you seen anything more vibrant? The flower is about 3″ wide with bright yellow-orange and red petals. I gush with delight when I see this flower open up every morning!

This is an orange California poppy that was in a mix. I was hoping it was pink or purple but this is what sprouted. It is cute though.

This Ruby Spider daylily is the BOMB! What an amazing show of red and orange in this outrageous beauty! I would love to have a bunch more of these.  Sadly, it opened for a day or so and I was not able to enjoy it more.  There are some new ones getting ready to open soon though.

At Last rose is one of my favorite of orange roses. Flowers are smaller than most roses but it has beautiful shades of oranges and yellows.

Below is an orange zinnia from a mix. This is really an unexpected color in the seed mix but I think I am in love with it. This picture is actually a day before it fully bloomed that’s why it had those neat beige colors in the center. I wish it stayed like that forever.

These daylilies below are all from a mix. As you can see they are quite orange and almost red. I’ve had these for a couple of years but this is the first time I’ve seen it flower.  They are all over my garden and so ORANGE!

Here are some of my pretty garden pictures. The best time to catch beautiful pictures of my yard is on a cloudy day because it shows off the colors so vibrantly. In the picture below I have a plumeria, pink alstroemeria, iris, and tall pink Verbascum Southern Charm way in the back.

Below is another garden patch nearby where I have a 3 year-old sage bush with purple flowers, purple magnolia, purple daisies, purple roses, lily tree (center), and the pink, fast-growing Strybing Beauty.

In this picture below are General Sikorski clematis, blue chicory flowers, plumeria, and magnolia Souvlangiana.

Below are some rose mallow, yellow daisies, and a Red Baron peach tree. The Red Baron will change its leaves into red sometimes in early September, I believe. As you can see it has grown quite a bit since last year when I first wrote about it.

That’s all for now. I have more to show you in a few days!

Cosmos

This spring I planted a couple of new cosmos. I love the colors and flowers of cosmos. I try to grow them from seeds every year. They are so vibrant and fun. I put quite a few in the ground but for the first time this spring I am growing several in pots because I didn’t have room in the yard.

Cosmos planted in the ground can get pretty big and unwieldy so I am mindful of that this time around.  They are very easy to care for and can tolerate poor clay soil. I think they make attractive wispy plants between larger leafy bushes.

Rose bonbon
Cranberry
Apricot lemonade
Lemonade

In the garden I have a few more exciting flowers in bloom below. As you can see my clematis from last year has really taken off with four times more flowers! I have a sunflower looking beauty below that I am not sure what kind it is. Then, I have a 3′ tall branch of a poppy called Drama Queen that is deep burgundy with frilled edges. It really is the most dramatic looking poppy I have ever seen!

Clematis General Sikorski
Sunflower
Drama Queen poppy

In the picture below I have a couple of Epiphyllum orchid cactus cuttings that was left neglected with no soil, water, or pot and yet it is starting to flower, whereas the ones I have in pots are not doing well at all. I think it might be because I water them too much. Neglect is what it needs!

Have a great week ahead!

Poppies, Ranunculus, and Hibiscuses

I have been feeling a little overwhelmed with taking care of all my plants. The heat and strong winds caused a lot of stress to me and my plants. Everything got dried up quickly and the leaves were turning yellow. I am spending a lot of time watering, mulching, and fertilizing. Along with caring for these existing plants, I also had some seedlings I was growing from a couple of months back. Several of the poppy seedlings I put out in the ground got eaten by pests or die from heat. It was very frustrating to see all your hard work go kaput within days.

Right now my biggest challenge since I have a million plants out there, is I need to figure out an irrigation system. I have been DEEP watering many plants by carrying buckets around the yard. It is hard work and my right arm has been screaming in pain! Mulching helps a lot in keep plants happy but summer heat of 85 degrees Fahrenheit or more here will demolish many plants in no time. I need to be prepared.

I have also inherited 8 of my father-in-law’s trees so even more plants to care for! I feel it is my obligation to not let plants die, that’s why I work so hard in watering, mulching, and fertilizing. I did get a very nice red maple and a redbud tree from my father-in-law that I have always wanted so that’s a good thing.

As hard as I have to work for my garden, they still bring me the greatest joys in seeing them bloom in the spring and summer months. I think this year my garden will be quite EPIC and I can’t wait to see mature plants bloom more prolifically. I also added some newbies like these ranunculus and poppies below which are devastatingly beautiful.

All of the above pictures were from a Champagne ranunculus collection. It’s hard to believe but the various shades of orange, salmon, and pink is from the same plants at different times of the day and after a number of days. They have been in bloom for at least five days already and they look like they will last a few more days. I am thrilled with having ranunculus in my garden. These have my favorite colors pink and coral. I definitely want to add more of these for next year.

The above picture is my Afghan poppy. It is the most amazing looking poppy and plant I have ever seen. It is about 4′ tall and the flower stayed like this for several days, unopened. I’m not sure if it would ever open because today my gardener blew the petals off (I’m so mad about that). If you look out in my yard and you see this amazing plant standing majestically in pink and white, you would smile at it too. Luckily, there is another bulb forming below this flower so I should have another flower soon.

These purple poppies are called Poppy of Troy. I was lucky enough to get several flowers. They are sneaky though. They bloom early in the morning and by afternoon the petals usually fall on the ground. I am at work during the times they bloom so I had to ask my husband to take these pictures during the day. I love these. The purple is so beautiful.

The above are Apricot Chiffon poppies. These are sneaky too, blooms during the day and closed up by late afternoon.

The rest of the below pictures are some of my favorite blooming hibiscuses. These are gorgeous and will be blooming for the next several months.

I hope this post showed you some of the best things God has to offer for us to enjoy. With a little of our own hard work these beauties will give back tenfold!

Poppies

Poppies are another one of my favorite annual flowers. They have beautiful, delicate petals and long stems that swish back and forth in the wind. Bees love them in my garden! I have grown them from seeds early in February and by end of April there were blooms everywhere. Last year I was able to grow a few plants from seeds but this year I had only four plants that survived. The poppies I like to grow are somewhat unusual and have been difficult to grow here in Southern California. They are usually zoned for cooler weather than our zone 10 here.

Poppies are such stunners in the garden when they bloom. Poppies cope with the hot sun very well once they are established. Watering can be every 3 days, unless it is high heat in the 90s, I usually water every 2 days. I never fertilized them and they still bloom for the whole spring. I suppose if I fertilized them it may extend their blooms longer.

Once the flowers dry out, you can leave them on the plant so that the wind can help reseed it elsewhere or you can collect the seeds from the dead flowers and plant next year.

Fruit Punch Poppy – this was a strong hardy plant. I had 5-6 blooms, usually one at a time. They last about a day or two.
Hungarian Blue Breadseed Poppy – this poppy was short-lived, it barely opened in the morning and by the afternoon all the petals blew off. I was very sad it died but the colors were extremely pretty.

California Poppy – I’m not sure of the variety’s name. This was also very short-lived but I am really enamored by the pink, white, and yellow color combinations

Below are some of last year’s poppies in my yard.