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Posts Tagged ‘Pansy’

…just another day in the City across the way from the City by the Bay!

Hello!!

Hello There!!

Ms. Gretchen seems to be enjoying the newest item I have growing; Rosy’s Kitty Grass from the folks at Woodrose Gardens in Sebastopol, CA. This was a gift from a former co-worker which was mailed to me last week; a 3.3 oz. package of their 100% organic seeds that I planted immediately upon receiving them. The shoots are not actually a grass; such as you would have in yard, they are a blend of young sprouted grain which provide a significant amount of fiber into your companion animals diet, as well as other vitamins, minerals, and live enzymes. I can testify that Ms. Gretchen is a fan! It is also an easy to grow project and one that would likely get the younger folks interested in the fun of gardening given that it also has the benefit that their kittens would also enjoy the resulting grass immensely!

3-days after planting

3-days after planting

5-days after planting

5-days after planting

In non-cat related gardening news! The profusion of color which the numerous snapdragon blossoms have delivered shows no signs of abating anytime soon. More and more flowering stalks are popping up in all of the planters that I could stuff the dragons into when I did the Winter Garden refresh back in January.

This is definitely my favorite so far! Love the color!

This is definitely my favorite so far! Love the deep crimson color!

Three snapdragon blooms really brighten things up!

Three snapdragon blooms really brighten things up!

Ms. Bee buzzing around the blooms

Ms. Bee buzzing around the blooms

The Amazon Sunset, Parrot’s Beak, Lotus vine variety also continues to put out a profuse amount of her orange/red fiery blooms. She is VERY thirsty though, requiring at least one watering a day and sometimes two if the temperatures get above the mid-70’s!!

Amazon Sunset, Parrot's Beak

Amazon Sunset, Parrot’s Beak

Cascading blooms from the fiery Lotus variety

Cascading blooms from the fiery Lotus variety

Today was also a day for cycling and training for my first bike race in over 25-years! I signed up for the 2013 PETA Pack bicycle race;  with the marquee bike race being the VW Think Blue Bike Race, which precedes the 2013 Long Beach Marathon on October 13, 2013. Knowing that I have been off of a bike for 20+ years and that I would doing the race on my steel framed, single speed bike, I have been training hard well ahead of the formal training which begins in July. Today, I did 25-miles, marking the 2nd time I have ever cycled a quarter-century.

Long and Beautiful Bike Ride Today!

Long and Beautiful Bike Ride Today!

That is about all of the news that’s fit to print from this side of the gardening world! As usual, today I will leave you with a couple of pictures that I liked which didn’t really fit into the dialog of this blog.

A snails eye view

A snails eye view

Mr. Big Boy Avocado, enjoy a day of sunshine

Mr. Big Boy Avocado, enjoy a day of sunshine

Until next time…

HAPPY GARDENING FRIENDS!

~ Noah

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…the patio plants remarked in unison as they peered through the sliding glass door which separates the outdoor patio garden and the land of the houseplants.

Purple and White Cineraria springs from its planter

Purple and White Cineraria springs from its planter

Indeed, historically the stand-out flowers of my garden have lived outside on the patio and not indoors. There have been a couple of exceptions; the Paphiopedillum Callosum Orchid being the most notable of such exceptions; however, she only bloomed once, though I would love if she would grace me with another her glorious slippers! With the recent addition of Cineraria and Primula to my indoor plant collection though, the outdoor patio now has a serious contender for stand-out flowers at Casa de Froio!

The window box in glorious bloom

The window box in glorious bloom

Primula and Cineraria apparently really like each others company!

Primula and Cineraria apparently really like each others company!

Pastel blue Cineraria

Pastel blue and Sparking White Cineraria

Still, one should never count out the patio garden’s potential and this week; as in weeks past, the patio garden did not disappoint! The Pansy, Viola, and Primrose continue to be a long-lasting source of beauty which entices me outside quite often. There is also a wonderful anticipation waiting for me outside in the shape of what I hope to be right around the corner; a sea of glorious Snapdragon blooms!!

The snapdragon plants now tower above the pansy and viola

The snapdragon plants now tower above the pansy and viola

There are still no buds on the snapdragon stalks, so my anticipation may be premature as my past snapdragon have usually waited until mid-summertime to start blooming. Although with the unseasonably warmer temperatures that Oakland had this spring, I do hold out some hope for early blooms! Looking back through my post from last year, I may have to wait until July; however, I am hopeful for May or June – I suppose that only time will tell!

Elsewhere around the garden the Pansy (Supreme Clear Scarlet and Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch), the Viola (Helen Mount, Penny Yellow, and Pandora’s Box), and the Primrose (Pacific Giant Blue and Purple Supernova) continue to thrive and poke and peer from every corner of the patio.

Supreme Clear Scarlett and Majestic Giant Pansy

Supreme Clear Scarlett and Majestic Giant Pansy

Slightly smaller; yet still impressive, Supreme Clear Scarlet pansy

Slightly smaller; yet still impressive, Supreme Clear Scarlet pansy

Helen Mount Viola surround a Majestic Giant

Helen Mount Viola surround a Majestic Giant

Ms. Jade continues on her road to full recovery from her unceremonious dumping and is thriving in her new redwood planter box! It appears that the Primula that I added to her planter like it as much as she does!

Ms. Jade continues her road to recovery!

Ms. Jade continues her road to recovery!

Ms. Jade's new neighbor, Primula Acaulis White

Ms. Jade’s new neighbor, Primula Acaulis White

Down at the far end of the garden in the big yellow planter box; the Hydrangea are leafing out nicely and should be ready to bloom right about the same time the Snapdragon are blooming, which will be a wonderful color-explosion for Summer that I am very much looking forward to. In addition, the bulbs that I received from my ex-wife last year have just begun to send up their first shoots of the season and I am hopeful that I will have another guest appearance of the glorious Amaryllis bloom of last year. That Amaryllis was hands down, no contenders need apply, easily the most beautiful flower I have ever seen, let alone was able to grow!

The Hydrangea Return

The Hydrangea Return

A bulb bursts to life!

A bulb bursts to life!

The Euphorbia continues her  flowering stage

The Euphorbia continues her flowering stage

Finally today, I leave you with these parting shots; I just really liked them and thought that I would share!

Purple Supernova Primrose

Looking up through the Purple Supernova Primrose

Unknown Purple Daisy

Unknown Purple Daisy

Until next update –

HAPPY GARDENING FRIENDS!!

~ Noah

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Cineraria, v. multifloria

Cineraria, v. multiflora

That’s Why I’m Easy…

I’m easy like Sunday morning

New Primula in the Jade Bed

New Primula in the Jade Bed

Sunday is coming to a close and I am just sorting through my photos of the patio garden taken earlier in the day. The seemingly never-ending blooms that grace my patio are more than I could have hoped for and now, I am blessed with an all new blooming fest with my indoor planters! The Primula and Cineraria that I recently picked up at my local nursery are now bringing the brilliance I have enjoyed on the patio into the indoor living space – and with their blooms; happiness ensues!!

New Cineraria blooms are emerging everywhere!

New Cineraria blooms are emerging everywhere!

Pastel blues and purples invade the window box

Pastel blues and purples invade the window box

Primula globes and Cineraria explode in the window box

Primula globes and Cineraria, an explosion of indoor color

Let's visit the outside, shall we?

Let’s visit the outside, shall we?

Outside, the patio is just keeps giving and giving! When I was planning the Winter Garden Refresh in January I knew what I wanted; a garden awash in colorful blooms and someplace that was relaxing to unwind after a long bike ride or hard day at work – I think I nailed it!

These planters make me smile each time I look at them

These planters make me smile each time I look at them

The patio table, no longer great for playing cards!

The patio table, no longer great for playing cards!

My baker's shelf garden

My baker’s shelf garden

The rescued jade has recovered wonderfully!

The rescued jade has recovered wonderfully!

The ginger / hydrangea / ornamental strawberry patch

The ginger / hydrangea / ornamental strawberry patch

Well friends, that is about all of the news that is fit to print this week. I have no plans for any new plants in the immediate future (though, one never knows!) and I am still painfully hemming and hawing about the paint for the patio’s cinder block wall. Part of me wants to go with a rich blue; however, another part of me thinks it would end of looking oddly mismatched to the garden. I just don’t know, what I do know is that the fear of ruining the garden with hideous paint is debilitating!

Anyway, I leave you with some of the images I liked the most from today, enjoy!

The Euphorbia's flowering stalks continue their upward ascent!

The Euphorbia’s flowering stalks continue their upward ascent!

A lone daisy beckons her friends to come out!

A lone daisy beckons her friends to come out!

My favorite flower; the scarlet pansy just make me happy!

My favorite flower; the scarlet pansy just make me happy!

Until next week friends…

HAPPY GARDENING!

~ Noah

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Happy March!

Happy March!

March arrived quietly, sneaking in on a Friday morning while I was otherwise occupied with thoughts of the work day ahead of me. Yes friends, March is indeed a cunning month; slipping into existence right under our noses. Here we are, crazily expecting a 29th, 30th, and possibly even a 31st to report for duty, only be found AWOL and replaced by a whole new Month. Alas; stealthy as she may be, something about her appearance was quite apparent to this gardener, she came quietly, but packed one helluva beautiful color palette!

A flush of bright crimson, red, and yellow pop from a sea of green

A flush of bright crimson, red, and yellow pop from a sea of green

Voila hide in the morning shade - awaiting their time to shine

Voila hide in the morning shade – awaiting their time to shine

The patio garden is still in a wild state of ever-increasing bloom; the most noticeably grandiose show-off being the Purple Supernova Primrose. I have been growing primrose now for about 2-years, and never before have I seen the two-layered bloom volcano that mine has become.

I have never seen this layered flowering in Primrose! Love It!!

Happy BIG Primrose! I Love It!

Not to be outdone by the showy Purple Supernova Primrose, the Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy have also joined in on the bloom madness game and have remained in a constant state of beautiful bloom since their arrival to my patio in late January.

Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy

Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy

And, even more Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy

And, even more Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy

The Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy; although not putting forth nearly as many flowers as his scarlet cousin, have continued to provide abundant amounts of brilliant white and blue bundles of floral happiness around the patio.

Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy

Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy

Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy sneaks up on his scarlet cousin!

Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy sneaks up on his scarlet cousin!

The snapdragon are still slumbering, awaiting the perfect time to descend upon the patio with their annual Shock and Awe campaign of fiery blasts of blooms that strike happiness into the hearts of the local residents! I have had some wonderful success in the past year’s with my snapdragon’s blooms and I eagerly await the first signs of emerging blooms from the new snapdragon plants that I also picked up for the January Patio Garden Refresh.

Some newer additions to the menagerie; the Primula and Cineraria, are starting to set more and more flowers as well. [editors note:] I believe that I mixed-up which was which last week. What I referred to as Primula blooms, I am now fairly sure that the globes are in fact the Cineraria.

Oh well, gardening continues to be a learning experience!

Cineraria (I believe)

Cineraria (I believe)

Primula (hopefully!)

Primula (hopefully!)

Well friends, that is about all that there is to report from my little corner of the gardening world this week. I will leave you today with the following images:

◊ New additions to Ms. Jade’s new home ~ newly blooming Primula!

Primula share Ms. Jade's New Planter

Primula share Ms. Jade’s New Planter

◊ The Euphorbia sending up flower (or seed) stalks?

Interesting, Euphorbia, Interesting!

Question: Does anyone know whether or not I should let the stalks stay, grow, and see what happens; or as I have read for Coleus, should I remove them before they set seed and possibly risk the plants demise?

So, until the next update…

HAPPY GARDENING FRIENDS!!

~Noah

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…Oh my!!

Scarlet Pansy greets the morning

Scarlet Pansy greets the morning

Sunday for me is generally my day to get the household chores done, work on the garden, go grocery shopping, and then plan out the work week ahead over dinner. Today; however, was not one of those days at all!

Today, I woke up early, made a fresh pot of my favorite Fair Trade Dark Roast coffee, and began getting ready for my day. My first stop this morning was the garden. The garden in the morning; with a piping hot cup of coffee in hand, a cool seat beneath me, and an explosion of colorful flowers all around me, is easily one of my all-time favorite spots to be in the world. It is eerily quiet here in Oakland at 5:45 a.m., the only sounds are the distant whir of traffic on the freeway a quarter-mile away, the breeze rattling the leaves of the bamboo forest which stands as the privacy barrier the chain link wouldn’t, and a couple of critters scurrying around on the hunt for their morning’s repast.

A field of Scarlet greets my patio entrance

A field of Scarlet greets my patio entrance

As much as I am enjoying my coffee, I know that if I want to get done today all that I have planned, that I must venture back indoors to get ready for a bike ride. I push for Lake Merritt early, I shoot for 2-laps before the inevitable hoards of local residents descend upon this beautiful lake to enjoy a day of walking, jogging, biking, boating, or just people watching and a nosh!

It wasn't cold; however, a snowflake or two was present

It wasn’t cold; however, a snowflake or two was present

I have recently gotten back into cycling after a 20+ year hiatus from any type of riding. At a coworkers suggestion, I bought a 2012 SE Draft single-speed road bike (56cm) and have been riding to work nearly everyday instead of driving the short trip that separates my apartment from my office. It was not long after purchasing the new Pirate Ship (my old ’97 Ford Probe being the original) from my ex-wife that I realized I had fallen into a “drive everywhere” frame of mind. The store is 3-blocks away, down a beautiful residential street lined with lovely gardens in full bloom, yet I still drove! That had to stop, much of the inspiration and motivation for my patio garden came from walking to work and seeing something in someones garden that I just had to find at the nursery. In came the bicycle, realizing that I didn’t want to drive everywhere (plus, with gas prices these days!) and that I could definitely benefit from putting exercise back into my regular routine.

Big, bright, beautiful Crimson Primrose brighten my day

Big, bright, beautiful Crimson Primrose brighten my day

2-laps around the lake (6.2 miles and change) later and it is time to get the golf clubs ready and get changed for a lazy round of 9-holes at one of our local municipal courses. Golf is another sport/game (?) that I played often but had fallen out of playing regularly after leaving my job in the City and moving to the East Bay. I decided that I would pick up another set of clubs (Craigslist to the rescue) and get back out on the fairways every now and again. Today reminded me that I need A LOT of practice! Oh well; like they say, your worst day on a golf course is almost always better than your best day at the office!

Profusion of Pacific Giant Blue Primrose

Profusion of Pacific Giant Blue Primrose

I am now home and I am exhausted! I’m thinking that dinner will involve a call to Lanesplitter’s Pizza and an order a two of their HUMONGOUS vegan calzones, delivery please. One of their calzone should do it for dinner and I will enjoy any remains from #2 for breakfast or lunch tomorrow.

I end the day as it started, looking out on the patio. Now the afternoon sunshine is giving way to the shadowy light of the early dawn. I am too tired to even open the sliding glass door and venture outside to enjoy the last of today’s daylight. No, now I am seeking only the comfort of the couch and continue to fight off my body’s suggestion to ‘lay down and take a nap, old man!.’

Before I close the lid on my laptop for the evening, I share with you some new friends who have joined my family of  plants. A recent trip to the nursery ended when I found the following two members of the Primula family. The newbies quickly bloomed and are now providing a happy, yet muted, splash of pastel color to my indoor space.

These dainty little beauties now enjoy the view from the window box in my living room (they replaced the much adored; however completely spent indoor primrose). The Primula are joined in the window box by a little known member of the Aster (Asteraceae) family; Cineraria ‘multifloral mix’. The Cineraria have yet to set flowers; so for now, enjoy the Primula (apparently she is a dainty cousin of the Primrose).

Primula

Primula ‘Embrace Mix’

Primula 'White'

Primula v. acaulis ‘White’

Say Goodnight Gracie, good night!

Say Goodnight Gracie; ‘good night!’

HAPPY GARDENING FRIENDS!!

~N0ah

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Violaceae viola x wittrockiana

'White Blotch' pansies

‘White Blotch’ pansies

Hemerocallidaceae Hemerocallis x ‘scarlet pansy’

'Scarlet Pansy'

‘Scarlet Pansy’

Before heading out for the day to get the weekend chores done; grocery getting, visiting the garden center to see if they have any strawberry (June bearing) plants in the offering, then laundry, I thought that I would share a few images of the recently planted ‘Majestic Giants II White Blotch’ and ‘Scarlet” pansies that I shot yesterday morning.

Scarlet Pansy showing off

Scarlet Pansy showing off

All were taken with my little Sony Cyber-shot digital camera (7.2 mega pixels) set at 5M image size. I decided that I would see how the images would turn out without the use of the flash – wanting instead to see what the natural sunlight would provide in regard to shadowing, texture, and depth. I like them for the most part; however, some I think would have benefited from the use of the flash!

'white blotch' w. Pacific Giant Blueprimrose

‘white blotch’ w. ‘Pacific Giant Blue’ primrose

single 'white blotch'

single ‘white blotch’

Not pansies; but what the heck: Purple Supernova Primrose

Not pansies; but what the heck: Purple Supernova Primrose

Well friends, I am off to the garden center to see what’s new, hopefully pick up some new additions, and look at paint costs/color options, to complete the patio garden refresh. If I find something intriguing, or if I get crazy bold and energetic, you may see another post today – if not, I hope that you all have a great weekend in the garden!

HAPPY GARDENING FRIENDS!

~Noah

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As I was preparing to leave for work yesterday morning, I glanced out through the sliding glass door onto the patio and was compelled to wander outside; Work? Meh; work can wait a bit, right?

The doorway to my personal paradise

The doorway to my personal paradise

This was the vision which beckoned my attention away from the short bike ride to the office and to instead wait a while and enjoy the outdoors for a spell – can you blame me?

Hmm, the planter looks alive this morning!

Hmm, the planter looks alive this morning!

I think it was the ridiculous vibrancy of the Purple Supernova Primrose that first caught my eye – I had to take a closer look…

Purple Supernova Primrose

Purple Supernova Primrose

Granted, the primrose are indeed lovely and their flowers are much larger than I recall my previous primrose varieties growing; however, there was more…

Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy

Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy

Yes, there was definitely more! Such as the rapidly increasing population of Supreme Clear Scarlet Pansy which are now dotting my patio and providing an amazing splash of the deepest scarlet color I remember seeing in a flower! All that I have in response to their beauty would be; ‘Good job Mother Nature, good job!’

Closer view of the Scarlet Pansy

Closer view of the Scarlet Pansy

If all of that wasn’t enough, my attention turned again, this time to behold the forming armada of encamped Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansies, poised to strike happiness upon any soul who stumbles upon their lair

Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy

Majestic Giants II – White/Blotch Pansy

I really could not have expected that I would get this much color, in such incredible combinations, not to mention the sheer number of flowers as are currently gracing my little corner of Oakland! Yet, still there were more…

Helen Mount Viola

Helen Mount Viola

The Helen Mount Viola have begun to explode into being and to produce; in a dizzying array of vibrant violets and golden yellows, their signature bi-colored blooms. I thought to myself; ‘Certainly, that must be the limit of a couple of week’s old starters from the nursery, right?

Nope (not Chuck Testa), these Crimson and Yellow Primrose!

Nope; (it wasn’t even Chuck Testa); it was just these Crimson and Yellow Primrose!

By now, I realized that I still actually have to go to work! As much as I hated the thought of leaving my new mini-paradise found; the bills need to be paid, the cat fed, and the plants nurtured, which dictated that I should concentrate on keeping the day job! The garden will wait for my return.

My travel to work was swift – my Christmas present to myself – a 2012 SE Draft bike, makes for a much nicer (and faster) commute vs. walking or driving and trying to find parking! Yesterday, the Gardening Pixies must have been smiling down upon me;  instinctively sensing that I did not want to leave the tranquility of my secluded garden for the chaotic reality that is my job, and provided a lovely surprise upon my arrival to work.

As I pushed my bike into my office, there was something new… a reminder, a reminder that beauty can be anywhere and everywhere. You just have to be open and to look for it, it can show up even on the desk in your office…

My 2.5 year old Poinsettia; red bracts ablaze!

My 2.5 year old Poinsettia; red bracts ablaze!

The poinsettia flowers emerge

The poinsettia flowers emerge

Well friends,  I hope that you all enjoy your Thursday! There are only two more days until the weekend is back upon us, affording us with the opportunity to go play in the dirt, just like when we were kids!

Some say that you can never go back again… I beg to differ, a garden can bring you where ever you want to go… and right now, I want to go back again!

Is it 5:00 p.m. yet?

HAPPY GARDENING FRIENDS!!

~ Noah

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