Shining in the sun

Shining in the sun

An unknown plant basks in the sun at Arlington Garden, Pasadena

Instagram

Follow A Gardener’s Notebook on Facebook

Noted: 8 Edible Flowers to Brighten Your Garden—& Dinners

You might have more edibles in your garden than you think — and pretty one’s at that. Check out this list of edible flowers you might find in your own garden or, certainly, at your local nursery. — Douglas

Read 8 Edible Flowers to Brighten Your Garden—& Dinners via Food52


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Noted: Propagating plants from cuttings

We can always use more plants and FREE plants at that! Check out these techniques for making more plants all the time — Douglas
 

Read Propagating plants from cuttings via Sunset Magazine


An interesting link found among my daily reading

Azaleas

Red azalea

Azaleas

From a Friends’s garden

Instagram 

Follow A Gardener’s Notebook on Facebook


Learn more about azaleas with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out! 


White Azaleas in Black and White

White Azaleas in Black and White

White Azaleas in Black and White

White azaleas from a friend’s garden

Instagram 

Follow A Gardener’s Notebook on Facebook


Learn more about azaleas with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out! 


A Timelapse Treat in the Garden via HalloweenTreat on Tumblr

http://halloweentreat.tumblr.com/post/158601427395/my-2016-pumpkin-patch-in-three-seconds

Interesting Plant: Bush beardtongue (Keckiella breviflora)

Bush beardtongue (Keckiella breviflora)

Keckiella breviflora.jpg
By tomhilton – originally uploaded to Flickr as Keckiella 02, CC BY 2.0, Link

What are your thoughts on this Interesting Plant? Drop a note in the comments! 

Keckiella breviflora (formerly Penstemon breviflorus) is a species of flowering shrub in the plantain family known by the common name bush beardtongue.

It is native to many of the western Transverse Ranges, Inner California Coast Ranges and the Sierra Nevada in California, and its range extends just into Nevada.

Keckiella breviflora is a branching, bushy shrub with many thin stems, approaching a maximum height near two meters.

Its shiny green leaves are arranged oppositely on the branches, and each is one to four centimeters long, generally lance-shaped and finely serrated or smooth along the edges.

The shrub produces tall inflorescences which are loose, glandular spikes of flowers. Each flower is one to two centimeters wide with five pale pink or pinkish-streaked white lobes whose external surfaces have long, shiny hairs. The three lower lobes curl outward from the mouth and under, and the two upper lobes are joined into a lip that curves forward over the mouth. Within the mouth are long stamen filaments bearing anthers, and a flat, hairless, sterile stamen called a staminode  — Wikipedia

More information on Bush beardtongue (Keckiella breviflora:

Learn more about Bush beardtongue (Keckiella breviflora):
 
 
 * A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!  

View all past “Interesting Plant” posts


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

Gazania Flowers

Gazania

Gazania Flowers

Outside the doctor’s office yesterday.

Instagram 

Follow A Gardener’s Notebook on Facebook

The Bold Dry Garden: Lessons from the Ruth Bancroft Garden [Book]

The Bold Dry Garden: Lessons from the Ruth Bancroft Garden

by Johanna Silver (Author), Marion Brenner (Photographer)

If you truly want to know and understand a garden, you need to walk the garden with the owner, the creator, the designer or the head gardener. They can show and tell you small things that you might not notice on your own or explain grand themes and plans which are only subtly visible in the garden but underpin everything.

Books like The Bold Dry Garden are the next best thing to walking the paths with the owners and hearing the stories of how the garden was created, how this plant or the other was acquired, the grand successes and dismal failures. You get a sense for all these in The Bold Dry Garden.

The author and photographer seek to make the garden accessible to anyone no matter where they might be in the world. Even though I only live 5-6 hours drive from the Ruth Bancroft Garden I had not heard of it and, of course, have never visited. This book has changed that th0ugh. Now I am intimately familiar with creator Ruth Bancroft’s history, the evolving garden design and even particular specimen plants included in the garden.

The Bold Dry Garden begins with “Meet Ruth”. This recounts Ruth’s early history from her childhood to the point where, at age 63, after most of the surrounding farmland had been sold off for subdivisions, she started to build the garden. From this start in 1971, the garden grew and changed until it became part of the Garden Conservancy in 1991. This addition helped to preserve and maintain the gardens for generations to come.

The bulk of The Bold Dry Garden is the section entitled “Signature Plants of the Dry Garden.” Here you find detailed accounts and photos of many of the plants in the garden including agaves and aloes, echeveria and sempervivum, euphorbium and crassula. This is a veritable encyclopedia for succulents lovers and an excellent reference book, as well as one to simply read from cover to cover as if you were walking through the garden itself. The descriptions and photographs can give you both interesting ideas and detailed information for seeing how these plants might fit into your own garden.

Now that I have read The Bold Dry Garden, I plan on visiting the next time I am in Northern California. In fact, I will probably go out of my way to visit, even if I am just passing through. A garden like The Ruth Bancroft Garden is always a treat to visit and my appetite has been whet with this amazing, written and photographed, introduction.


* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!

A Botanist’s Vocabulary: 1300 Terms Explained and Illustrated [Book]

A Botanist’s Vocabulary: 1300 Terms Explained and Illustrated

Susan K. Pell and Bobbi Angell

Exactly what it says on the cover, A Botanist’s Vocabulary defines and illustrates 1300 botanical terms from abaxial (lower surface) to zygomorphic (having a single plane of symmetry). The definitions are short, clear and to the point while the excellent line drawing clearly illustrates many of the terms.

It was fun as I randomly flipped through the book, learning new things on every page. In fact, though, this book shines as a reference book — a gardening dictionary — that sits close to where you do your other reading. Having it at hand as you flip through plant and seed catalogs and other gardening books, gives you an instant resource for those unknown and/or unusual terms you sometimes come across in your reading. Sure, you can always “Google it”, but there is something to be said for the convenience of reaching out and having the answer at your fingertips.

A Botanist’s Vocabulary is for anyone who wants to expand their botanical knowledge beyond a few, well known, Latin names and dig deeper into the world of botany and horticulture. It could also be of great use when you are trying to identify or “key out” an unknown plant both in your garden and in the wild. I know that for myself, reading and working through plant identification keys is fraught with unknown and unusual terms that often stop you in your tracks, so adding A Botanist’s Vocabulary could certainly ease your way to figuring out just what that new plant is.

As usual, I checked out my copy of A Botanist’s Vocabulary from my local library — my typical way of reading new books and deciding whether I want to add them to my own personal collection. There is, after all, a hard physical limit on how many books you can have in your living space. You might be able to find a “review” copy there, too. Regardless of how you read it, though, I highly recommend you give it some of your attention. I think you will be amply rewarded by the new knowledge you find there.

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!