Saturday, November 26, 2016

Bird of Paradise

__________________________________________________________________________

Strelitzia is native to South Africa.




Bird of paradise





strelizia
a view on the knowie river, south africa

Maryanne North painting kew gardens

 source: plant illustrations




STRELIZIA reginae banks ex aiton 
p j redoute,
 les lilacees, volume 2: 77 (1805-1816)
Missouri Botanical Garden












rassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Friday, November 25, 2016

Two Autumn Crocus

__________________________________________________________________________

I. Meadow Saffron Autumn crocus, Meadow saffron 

Colchicum autumnale 

colchicaceae family




COLCHICUM AUTUMNALE 

Flora von Deutschland, Osterreich und der Schweiz

Otto Wilhelm Thome 1885, gera, germany


Meadow saffron and saffron crocus are both autumn flowering crocus, but of differing families. We get the saffron used in cooking from saffron crocus (crocus sativus) 


II. Saffron crocus



Saffron crocus

Crocus sativus 

Iridaceae family

Kohler's Medizinal Pflanz

 Franz Eugen Kohler, 1897

















Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Monday, November 21, 2016

Count Down to Give Thanks

__________________________________________________________________________


Grandma's/Aunt Betty's Black Cherry Jello

2        large packages black cherry Jello (or 3 small packages)
2        cans black cherries (not pie filling)
1/2 c  Creme sherry (optional, deduct 1/2 cup from the water if using)
1/2 c. - 1 c. chopped walnuts (optional)

Make Jello according to the directions -- (except: don't add the cold water yet... you are going to substitute the cherry juice and creme sherry for the cold liquid addition added after the Jello is dissolved in the heated water). 

Drain the juice from the black cherries, reserve juice.
Add cherries to dissolved Jello (be careful it stains).
Measure cherry juice, creme sherry and water to "equate" to box directions for cold water addition at this point.
Add chopped walnuts if desired. 
Cover and refrigerate.
I make this the night before Thanksgiving Day. 
Notes: I have never been able to find sugar-free black cherry Jello.
Lovely family, savor the sweet.







Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Ginkgo Tree

__________________________________________________________________________





 My favorite tree, ginkgo, is a tree frequently unnoticed until it drops its leaves. What an unusual shape for a leaf and it is such a beautiful and brillant yellow shade in the autumn!  It's leaf is fan-shaped or "duck-feet" shaped. The fruit is produced only by the female tree. 
GINKGO BILOBA TREE
FEMALE TREE WITH FRUIT
 FAN-SHAPED OR DUCK-FEET SHAPED LEAVES

Arborists prefer to plant male trees due to the cheesy scent of the fruit produced on the female tree.  
Maidenhair Tree
GINKGO BILOBA TREE
Vase shaped tree



Rarely, a ginkgo tree with fruit is found. I was happy to capture these photographs of a female tree with ripe fruit at the Arboretum. The Arboretum is a great place to see a broad spectrum and diversity of trees.
GINKGO BILOBA TREE
FEMALE TREE WITH FRUIT
 FAN-SHAPED OR DUCK-FEET SHAPED LEAVES

GINKGO BILOBA
addisonia, vol. 11: t. 362 NYBG 1926
Mary Emily Eaton (1873-1961
source:plant illustrations


GINKGO BILOBA TREE
FEMALE TREE WITH FRUIT
 FAN-SHAPED OR DUCK-FEET SHAPED LEAVES


Ginkgo biloba Tree
Female tree with fruit
 fan-shaped or duck-feet shaped leaves



Two traits appreciated by ginkgo lovers are the golden fall color and in just 1-2 days the leaves fall to the ground making cleanup quick and easy.


Table 1: Autumn Leaves of Ginkgo in various hardiness zones
Hardiness zone   When to expect beautiful yellow color in fall?    When to expect leaves to drop?
Zone 1 Not usually grown
Zone 2 Not usually grown
Zone 3
Zone 4

Zone 5 October, last week thru November, 1st week November, 2nd week
Zone 6
Zone 7 November, 3rd-4th week November,  4th week thru December, 1st week
Zone 8 November, 3rd-4th week November,  4th week thru December, 1st week
Zone 9 Not usually grown
Zone 10 Not usually grown


Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Book Review | 100 Plants to Feed the Bees

__________________________________________________________________________


100 PLANTS TO FEED BEES:
PROVIDE A HEALTHY HABITAT TO
HELP POLLINATORS THRIVe

Pollinators are given great consideration in 100 Plants to Feed the Bees. We are connected to pollinators in many ways, some of which we may not even be aware. 

Just as when I invite company for dinner and search for new and exciting recipes, I enjoyed looking through this new book from the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation for new and exciting plants to add to my garden. If you want to "provide a healthy habitat to help pollinators thrive," this book has a logical introduction for the novice to professional level and individual pages abundantly full of photographs for identification and growing tips to fit your personal needs. The book offers browsable profiles of 100 common flowers, herbs, shrubs, and trees that attract bees, butterflies, moths, and hummingbirds. Each plant profile includes which pollinators visit the plant, the quality of honey the nectar produces, when it blooms, and how best to use it in the landscape.



The first simple step toward protecting our pollinators is to provide the flowers they need. This field guide identifies the plants that honey bees and native bees – as well as butterflies, moths, and hummingbirds – find most nutritious, including flowers, trees, shrubs, herbs, and pasture plants. With guidance from the Xerces Society, the global authority on insects and other invertebrates, you can turn your local environment into a thriving pollinator habitat.







*Disclaimer: I receive a free E-book to read in exchange for this review.
 Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Monday, November 7, 2016

At the Oasis | American Crinum

__________________________________________________________________________
Oasis is a word that translates easily in many countries and languages. It means a fertile or green area in an arid region such as a desert or something that provides refuge, relief, or pleasant contrast. The American crinum lily grows well in my shady garden. Pronounced: (Kry' -num).


American crinum lily, Crinum lily

Swamp lily, Southern swamp lily, String lily, Seven sisters



Currently blooming in my garden (yes, it is November) is our only native crinum, American crinum lily. They grow in small clumps. The strappy leaves grow directly from the bulb and are two to four feet long and two to three inches wide. The beautiful flowers are scented and attract pollinators.


Imagine early explorer's delight finding this cluster of unusual strappy leaves growing  in boggy and swampy areas, the mystery in wondering what type of flowers they produced, if any, and then finding the beautiful, enthusiastic white clusters coming forth with what seems like hardly any effort.

 AMERICAN CRINUM lily
Moninckx atlas, vol. 6: t. 29 (1682-1709)
 crinum americanum
 Curtis’s Botanical Magazine, t. 1014-1059, vol. 26
(1807), Sydenham Teast Edwards (1768 – 1819)
Source: Plant Illustrations






Amaryllidaceae Family 
Resources
Pacific Bulb Society
Ogden, Scott. Garden Bulbs for the South. Portland, Or: Timber Press, 2007. Print.
Manning, John, Peter Goldblatt, and D A. Snijman.;The Color Encyclopedia of Cape Bulbs. Portland: Timber Press, 2002. Print.
Knight, Anthony.; A Guide to Poisonous House and Garden Plants. Hoboken: Teton NewMedia, Inc, 2014. Internet resource.







6-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Alocasia Alligator

__________________________________________________________________________

My first thought upon observing this leaf was Madagascar or Australia most likely it's home. It looks unnatural. Come to find out the kris plant (Alocasia sanderiana) was hybridized with another Alocasia. The result is this shieldlike, alocasia alligator plant.




Kris dagger
Source: Kris bali 
The leaf of the Kris plant resembles the Kris dagger knife, a wavy, asymmetrical knife used on the island nations of Indonesia and the Philippines.

Many tropical leaves, feature  a pronounced ‘drip tip’, an adaptation at the end of the leaf. During the rainy phase of the monsoon season  The “drip tip”, enables the large amounts of rain to drain away from the plant quickly.




Kris plant (Alocasia sanderiana)

Alocasia Masquerade Series


Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Canna

__________________________________________________________________________

Cannas are one of the most popular garden plants internationally. They are tropical or subtropical so they will survive being placed in a boggy area. A close cousin, ginger, is edible as is the canna. With proper preparation they produce a starch suitable for noodle preparation. Throughout the world the seeds are used for dyes, musical instrument, and jewelry, Leaves are utilized to make paper, rope and fermented to make alcohol. 

Cannas can be found with red, orange, and yellow flowers and green or maroon leaves





The seeds are found in this nest full of  knobby fruit.




Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Fragile Yet So Strong | Wings to Fly

__________________________________________________________________________







Cigar Plant is a favorite of many pollinators






Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Mexican Bush Sage | Salvia leucantha

__________________________________________________________________________

My favorite native fall perennial is Mexican Bush Sage. 

I have grown this in my own garden for years. 
These photographs illustrate a beautiful vignette of cool colours in the Arboretum, 

Sail away.








Grassroots Horticulture
2006-2016
__________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________