Flowering Now: Silk Floss Tree (Ceiba speciosa)

Silk Floss Tree (Ceiba speciosa)

While their flowers are certainly beautiful, I have always found these trees to be quite alien and intimidating — especially with their thorny trunks. Silk floss trees are a relatively common street tree here in Los Angeles, blooming each Fall around this time.

Flowering Now: Silk Floss Tree (Ceiba speciosa)

Flowering Now: Silk Floss Tree (Ceiba speciosa)Flowering Now: Silk Floss Tree (Ceiba speciosa)

Photo: Douglas E. Welch, A Gardener’s Notebook

From Wikipedia…

The silk floss tree (Ceiba speciosa, formerly Chorisia speciosa), is a species of deciduous tree native to the tropical and subtropical forests of South America. It has a host of local common names, such as palo borracho (in Spanish literally “drunken stick”). It belongs to the same family as the baobab and the kapok. Another tree of the same genusCeiba chodatii, is often referred to by the same common names.

The natural habitat of the floss silk tree is the north-east of Argentina, east of BoliviaParaguayUruguay and southern Brazil. It is resistant to drought and moderate cold. It grows fast in spurts when water is abundant, and sometimes reaches more than 25 metres (82 ft) in height. Its trunk is bottle-shaped, generally bulging in its lower third, measuring up to 2 metres (7 ft) in girth. It is studded with thick conical prickles which serve to store water for dry times. In younger trees, the trunk is green due to its high chlorophyll content, which makes it capable of performing photosynthesis when leaves are absent; with age it turns to gray.[1] — Wikipedia

More information on Silk Floss Tree (Ceiba speciosa):

 
 

Previously in Flowering Now:

Noted: Free Online Gardening Lectures from the University of California via Root Simple

Free Online Gardening Lectures from the University of California via Root Simple

Free Online Gardening Lectures from the University of California via Root Simple

I just got back from a combined Master Gardener/Master Food Preserver conference put on by the University of California Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources (I became a Master Food Preserver back in 2012 thanks to a truly awesome training program put on by our local Extension Service and taught by Ernest Miller, a guest on episode 14 of our podcast).

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Noted: Native CA Plants in a Hidden Garden – Pierce College Botanical Garden via Animalbytes

Native CA Plants in a Hidden Garden – Pierce College Botanical Garden via Animalbytes

Native CA Plants in a Hidden Garden - Pierce College Botanical Garden via Animalbytes

I had heard there was a native plant garden on the campus at Pierce College in the San Fernando Valley, but I had not been there. I’m doing a series on Hidden Gardens of Los Angeles on TheEarthMinute.com, so I went scouting for the garden at Pierce.

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“Noted” items are particularly good finds from my daily reading which I share via all my social media accounts. 

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Noted: Great Design Plant: Paperbark Maple via Houzz

Great Design Plant: Paperbark Maple via Houzz

Traditional Landscape by Duvall Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Le jardinet
 
Suited to small gardens but equally at home in larger landscapes, the paperbark maple is sure to become a favorite feature in your garden.
 
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Interesting Plant: Sanguisorba

Sanguisorba

Sanguisorba

Discovered via Pinterest User By C’mai

Sanguisorba is a genus of flowering plants in the family Rosaceae native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. The common name is burnet.

The plants are perennial herbs or small shrubs. The stems grow to 50-200 cm tall and have a cluster of basal leaves, with further leaves arranged alternately up the stem. The leaves are pinnate, 5-30 cm long, with 7-25 leaflets, the leaflets with a serrated margin. Young leaves grow from the crown in the center of the plant. The flowers are small, produced in dense clusters 5-20 mm long; each flower has four very small petals, white to red in color. 

 

Burnets are cultivated as garden plants. Many cultivars have been bred, especially from S. officinalisS. canadensis is grown for its white flowers on stems that well exceed a meter tall. The plants hybridize easily, producing new mixes.[3] S. obtusa is valued for its foliage of pink-edged, gray-green leaves.[4]

 

S. officinalis is used medicinally in Asia to treat gastrointestinal conditions and bleeding.[5] – Wikipedia.org

 
More information on Sanguisorba:
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Previously in the Interesting Plant series: 

Interesting Plant is a series from A Gardener’s Notebook blog and podcast that highlights the most interesting plants I find in my Internet and real-world travels — Douglas

Video: Gulf fritillary butterfly (Agraulis vanillae) at the Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve

A Gardener's Notebook Artwork

Gulf fritillary butterfly (Agraulis vanillae) at the Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve

Check out my collection of gardening essays, “From A Gardener’s Notebook” now available as a Kindle eBook. (You don’t need a Kindle to read it, though. Read it on your PC, Link: http://j.mp/fagnbook

Watch all past episodes of “In the garden…” in this YouTube Playlist


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“In the garden…” is a series for A Gardener’s Notebook highlighting what is happening in my garden, my friend’s gardens and California gardens throughout the seasons. 

Video: In the garden…Beauty in the garden – butterfly and hibiscus in bloom – October 18, 2014

A Gardener's Notebook Artwork

An “In the garden…” short. Beauty in the garden in the form of a butterfly and a lovely hibiscus bloom.

In the garden...Beauty in the garden - butterfly and hibiscus in bloom - October 18, 2014

Check out my collection of gardening essays, “From A Gardener’s Notebook” now available as a Kindle eBook. (You don’t need a Kindle to read it, though. Read it on your PC, Link: http://j.mp/fagnbook

Watch all past episodes of “In the garden…” in this YouTube Playlist


Please Like this video and/or subscribe to my channel on YouTube.

Your likes and subscriptions directly reflect how many other viewers are suggested this video.

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel


Enjoy this post? Consider a donation via PayPal to support more garden posts, podcasts and videos!

  

 

 

“In the garden…” is a series for A Gardener’s Notebook highlighting what is happening in my garden, my friend’s gardens and California gardens throughout the seasons. 

Video: In the garden…Basil galore and more from the potting bench – October 15, 2014

A Gardener's Notebook Artwork

Our transplanted basil cuttings are taking off well and I check in on the potting bench for a quick look at our bauhinia seedlings, lavender cuttings and more.

In the garden...Basil galore and more from the potting bench - October 15, 2014

Check out my collection of gardening essays, “From A Gardener’s Notebook” now available as a Kindle eBook. (You don’t need a Kindle to read it, though. Read it on your PC, Link: http://j.mp/fagnbook

Watch all past episodes of “In the garden…” in this YouTube Playlist


Please Like this video and/or subscribe to my channel on YouTube.

Your likes and subscriptions directly reflect how many other viewers are suggested this video.

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel


Enjoy this post? Consider a donation via PayPal to support more garden posts, podcasts and videos!

  

 

“In the garden…” is a series for A Gardener’s Notebook highlighting what is happening in my garden, my friend’s gardens and California gardens throughout the seasons. 

Noted: Field Guide: Smoke Bush by Kendra Wilsonvia via Gardenista

Field Guide: Smoke Bush by Kendra Wilsonvia via Gardenista

Field Guide: Smoke Bush by Kendra Wilsonvia via Gardenista

The color of the leaves, the contrast with other plants, the light shining through: for many this is the point of Smoke Bush. For others, it’s all about the flowers that look like puffs of smoke at the tips of this singular bush.

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Interesting Plant/Fungi: Sulphur Fungus (Laetiporus sulphureus)

Sulphur Fungus (Laetiporus sulphureus)

Walking north into downtown Van Nuys I spotted this amazing example of a sulphur fungus growing in the crook of a tree. It was so brightly colored it almost look artificial. Such a fungus doesn’t bode well for the health of the tree as it is a sign of internal decay, but it is still a striking bit of nature right here in the city.

Sulphur Fungus  (Laetiporus sulphureus), Van Nuys, California

Photos: Douglas E. Welch

Sulphur Fungus  (Laetiporus sulphureus), Van Nuys, California Sulphur Fungus  (Laetiporus sulphureus), Van Nuys, California

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Laetiporus sulphureus is a species of bracket fungus (fungus that grows on trees) found in Europe and North America. Its common names are crab of the woodssulphur polyporesulphur shelf, and chicken of the woods. Its fruit bodies grow as striking golden-yellow shelf-like structures on tree trunks and branches. Like other bracket fungi, they may last many years and fade to pale grey or brown. The undersurface of the fruit body is made up of tubelike pores rather than gills.

Laetiporus sulphureus is a saprophyte and causes brown cubical rot in the heartwood of trees on which it grows. Unlike many bracket fungi, it is ediblewhen young.

The cap is small and knob-shaped, overlapping in an irregular pattern. Wide, shaped like a fan and attached direct to the trunk of a tree, it has a shelf-like appearance and is sulphur-yellow to bright orange in colour and has a suedelike texture. When it is old the cap fades to tan or white. The shelves often grow in overlapping clumps, and each one may be anywhere from 5 to 60 cm (2 to 24 in) in diameter and 4 cm (1.4 in) thick.[3] The fertile surface is sulphur-yellow with small pores or tubes and has a white spore print.[4] – Wikipedia.org

More information on Sulphur Fungus (Laetiporus sulphureus):
Books from Amazon.com:

 

* A portion of all sales directly support A Gardener’s Notebook
** Some of the books may be available at your local library. Check it out!

 
Enjoy this post? Consider a donation via PayPal to support more garden posts, podcasts and videos!
 

 

 

Previously in the Interesting Plant series: 

Interesting Plant is a series from A Gardener’s Notebook blog and podcast that highlights the most interesting plants I find in my Internet and real-world travels — Douglas