Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day – November 2018

I thought I would join with this „meme“ (not really a meme) of posting pictures of blooms in the garden every 15th of the month hosted by May Dreams Garden. Maybe it will encourage me to post more regularly.
We didn’t have any frosts here in the lower regions of Switzerland yet, so most of the plants are still well and alive. This will change presumably next week.

So let’s start with Arbutus unedo ‚Compacta‘, which is a dependable bloomer.

The fruit ripens when Arbutus starts flowering.

Bulbine bulbosa self-seeded. I think I grew this Australian native two years ago, it didn’t survive winter, but two self-seeded plants grew to the flowering stage this year.

This tall Cosmea flopped over recently. It will be probably gone by next week’s frost.

I planted this Dalea bicolor this year and it’s already flowering! Will it survive our wet winter, though?

A hot pink, random Delosperma bloom.

This Zauschneria (Epilobium) californica ‚Western Hills‘ is a champ. It is blooming since early summer and looked stunning for a long time. I want more of it!

The last of the Kniphofias still blooming: Kniphofia ‚Mango Popsicle‘. It glows from miles away. Beautiful!

Mahonia media ‚Winter Sun‘ smells so good when it’s warm and sunny. But I’m a bit disappointed with the pale flower color.

Tiny blooms on Muehlenbeckia axillaris (it counts!). It grows well together with Coprosma acerosa var. brunnea. They’re a great combination. Color pop from a Coprosma berry.

Pomegranate blooms!

Ricinus is still standing and blooming.

Last but not least: Rosemary.

That’s it for my garden besides a couple of weeds blooming;)


Jardin botanique de Genève

In July I visited the Jardin botanique de Genève. The trip was long but worthwhile. Compared to other Swiss botanical gardens it’s quite big.

Already in front of the entrance, I was greeted by an interesting and beautiful plant: A Senna or Cassia, probably Senna didymobotrya.

The garden has a huge rockery, where we spent most of our time here. I gravitated of course to the plants from the southern hemisphere. Two splendid Acaenas: Acaena myriophylla and A. pallida.

Escallonia rosea from Chile.

This bulb was labelled Zephyranthes rosea, but I believe it is Z. andersonii.

Interesting placement of Opuntia.

Oenothera speciosa.

Daphne gnidium.

Huge Eucomis pole-evansii (a South-African) and another Eucomis (bicolor?).

A carpet of Phyla nodiflora.

Could this be hardy? Lessertia frutescens.

Myrsine africana planted out and thriving.

Berkheya purpurea, a classic.

Crassula setulosa. Crassula is kind of the Sedum counterpart of Southern Africa.

Elegant Daphne tangutica.

A huge Podocarpus macrophyllus.

A nice specimen of Arbutus unedo.

I really liked this Cephalaria leucantha.

Cool Berberis aetnensis.

Tree-like Ericas: Erica terminalis and E. scoparia.

On pictures I thought Cneorum tricoccon looks boring, but in person it’s great.

Origanum scabrum.

Intereting Catanche caerulea.

Veratrum nigrum.

European Ericaceae: Rhodothamnus chamaecistus.

Another Opuntia. O. vulgaris.

Two totally different looking Saxifragas: Saxifraga sancta and S. pensylvanica.

Daphne alpina.

Almost a tree fern: Polystichum aculeatum.

Loiseleuria procumbens.

Rhodiola rosea.

Helianthemum lunulatum.

Genista sagittalis looks like one of the leafless plants from New Zealand.

Cool leaves on Hypericum balearicum.

Those are actually flowers on Acantholimon acerosum, not dried seed pods.

Several garden beds were holding different plant families. In this one were Sedums: Sedum sieboldii looked interesting.

Sedum stahlii is from Mexico. Want!

Now I found the Australasian part of the garden: First Raoulia glabra.

I don’t know which of these plants stay outdoor in winter. I don’t think all of them.

Hymenthera obovata.

Phormium tenax.

Cool Coprosmas: Coprosma propinqua.

Coprosma robusta.

Comprosma rugosa, my favorite of the bunch.

Stays Griselinia littoralis really outside in winter?

Haloragis erecta.

Derwentia derwentiana.

Plagianthus divaricatus. I want this bundle of sticks!

Carmichaelia enysii should be hardy.

Here I’m not sure: Carmichaelia australis.

A mature Podocarpus from New Zealand.

I love Eryngiums from South America: Eryngium agavifolium.

Eryngium pandanifolium.

Berberis mucrifolia looked interesting.

A winter hardy Cinnamon: Cinnamomum japonicum.

Winter hardy? Euphorbia coerulescens.

Nice looking Euphorbia virgata.

Xerophytic ferns are great: Asplenium ceterach.

The Jardin botanique had also cool conservatories.


The gesneriad collection.




A Puya chilensis outdoors?!


Magnificent Opuntia santarita.

Yucca desmetiana.

A shrubby Dianella.

Some highlights in July

Chitalpa x tashkentensis ‚Pink Dawn‘ produced for the first time a single bloom. Cute!

Deinanthe coerulea x bifida ‚Blue Wonder‘ is lightning up a gloomier part of the garden.

Dianella brevicaulis has lots of edible (okay tasting) blue berries.

Kniphofia ‚Poco Red‘ with poking red flower spikes.

Morina longifolia is quite pleasing.

I expected more from Verbascum chaixii. The two-year-wait wasn’t worth it. But it makes nice pictures.

June Impressions

Argyrocytisus battandieri ‚Yellow Tail‘ grows rampant.

Dianella brevicaulis is growing in a pot, which I take inside in winter.

Pimelea prostrata is a cute ground-cover from New Zealand.

Flowering Cornus kousa x capitata ‚Norman Hadden‘.

The first blooms on my Rhaphiolepis indica ever.

Echium russicum came back. I need more of these.

Berries of Lonicera caerulea var. kamtschatica are okay tasting when ripe.

Some nice looking peonies.

Rubus acuminatus is doing great this year and even put out some blooms. They’re quite showy.

Delosperma blooming.

Sphaeralcea parvifolia is a beautiful plant.

Aristotelia fruticosa grown from seed. Cool (and in horticulture very rare) New Zealander. It’s the gangly thing in the center. Behind is some Cephalotaxus harringtonia ‚Fastigiata‘.

Alien looking Asphodeline lutea.

Hakea microcarpa in good lighting.

A male Podocarpus lawrencii. I pollinated some other Podocarpus, maybe I’ll get seed.

May ’18 Garden Tour

Tetraneuris scaposa looks cheerfull. It’s a bit susceptible to snails.

The star of this year’s winter: Choisya ‚Aztec Pearl‘ wasn’t bothered at all with the -13°C dip. Now it’s in full bloom.

Xanthoceras sorbifolium has stunning blooms and edible nut, though it hasn’t set fruit for me yet. The large leaf on the left is Argyrocytisus battandieri ‚Yellow Tail‘.

It looks like Rhaphiolepis indica will be flowering for the first time. It had no problems with the winter, but that’s maybe just because it’s in a sheltered spot. The wiry plant is Hoheria angustifolia which seems to be hardy although not evergreen.

Flowering Erodium petraeum ‚Katharine Joy‘ is a joy to look at. It is framed by the spiny Ziziphus jujuba on the left, Tetraneuris scaposa on the bottom and Satureja montana ssp. montana in the back.

Rubus acuminatus took the cold spell in winter like a champ. It’s going to flower this year for the first time.

Laureliopsis philippiana is coming back after losing its leaves in winter.

The same goes for Amelanchier denticulata, which I’m very happy about.

I’m not a fan of Penstemon confertus. The color is weak and it flops over. (In the second picture is some foliage of the lovely Prostanthera cuneata)

Both Grevilleas got burnt badly this winter. Grevillea victoriae ‚Murray Valley Queen‘, in the first picture, seems to be better at regenerating than Grevillea alpina ‚Canberra Gem‘ (second picutre).

Early Spring Impressions

We had a mild winter with a hard ending: End of February temperatures dipped down to -13°C for a short time.

Beautiful combination: Hebe albincans (no i.d.) with Podocarpus acutifolius ‚Golden Lady‘. On the left, Choisya ‚Aztec Pearl‘ is peeking in.

Dainty Cyclamen coum.

Sarcococca confusa has a lovely scent.

Hamamelis (no i.d.) was on fire this spring.

Kind of Looking Back

I found an old camera with a bunch of photos from the last two years. Here they are, in no chronological order:

I tested these two species of Aristotelia: A. chilensis in the front, and A. serrata in the back with red stems.

Aristotelia chilensis freezes more easily to the ground, though it regenerates better. (Both pictures of the individual species were taken in winter, hence the stressed, yellow tint.)

This Aristotelia serrata got nearly killed last winter.

Azara petiolaris was hit bad by the long winter cold last year. Not as hardy as I thought.

A Banksia seedling that’s still living. I forgot which species it belongs to. On the left some Dianella tasmanica and creeping on the right: Muehlenbeckia axillaris.

Berkheya purpurea from South Africa has beautiful flowers and is hardy (though not long-lived). But I think it needs better drained soil for long-term success. The color is awesome.

Flowering Brachyglottis greyi ‚Sunshine‘. I love my combination with Hakea microcarpa (the photo doesn’t show it quite right).

Bulbine bulbosa is definitely not hardy. A Zone 9 plant, can’t survive temps under -5°C.

I love the foliage of Ceanothus gloriosus x masonii ‚Blue Jeans‘. Hardy and easy.

Chiliotrichum diffusum ‚Siska‘ looks like Lavandula.

Chrysanthemum indicum ‚Nanking‘ just died last winter. I wasn’t expecting that. It flowered extremely late in the year, just before the hard frosts; the plant was too big and not that great to eat.

Commelina tuberosa, which supposedly has edible tubers, didnt come back after last winter.

Another of my own favorite plant combinations: The ground-covering Muehlenbeckia axillaris with the small Coprosma acerosa var. brunnea ‚Bruno‘. Now, this year I bought some female plants, so I’m hoping for its spectacular blue fruits.

Crataegus orientalis with unripe fruit. The fruit tastes like apples, however, it has some big, hard seeds in it.

Dianella congesta flowered once, but didn’t set fruit. It’s not hardy (I tested it), I keep it in a pot.

Big-leaved Drimys winteri with Cephalotaxus harringtonia ‚Fastigiata‘. Interestingly, the Cephalotaxus got hit hard by the late frost. Both plants are fine now.

I bought this as Erodium petraeum, but it’s more likely a hybrid.

Fuchsia ‚Phyllis‘ freezes back each winter.

The beautiful Gevuina avellana died during summer, so I couldn’t even test it for winter hardiness. In the foreground some blooms of Ugni molinae.

Spiky Hakea microcarpa.

Hebe buxifolia.

It’s possible to make tea with Hydrangea serrata ‚Oamacha‘. In the background some wild Oregano and Melissa.

Ilex vomitoria is closely related to Yerba Mate and its leaves contain caffeine.

Impatiens omeiensis isn’t growing well for me.

Some proud Cardoon.

Lagerstroemia indica ‚Violet‘ flowered only once in my garden.

Lomatia ferruginea was already dying during the warmer season, but winter gave it the rest.

My other Lomatia, L. tinctoria, on the other hand, is doing fine.

Luma apiculata got hit by our last winter and froze almost to the base.

From several Melianthus major, that I grew from seed, only a little one survived last winter.

The beautiful Olearia macrodonta came barely through the winter and was killed by the late frost. A bummer!

Olearia virgata lineata lost its leaves, but seems to have good winter hardiness.

Passiflora caerulea barely made it through winter.

Pernettya/Gaultheria mucronata is easy and hardy.

Polylepis australis has made it through its first winter just fine.

The Protea seedlings, I planted out (they’re supposedly high-altitude species), didn’t make it.

I bought this as Rhamnus californica. It’s semi-evergreen, but it just looks like a regular Frangula alnus.

Rubus acuminatus does okay.

Rubus acuminatus with Tasmannia lanceolata ‚Red Spice‘ on the right.

This nice Monarda perished last winter.

In the center, silver with yellow blooms: Santolina chamaecyparissus. On the right: Distylium myricoides is a bit of a messy plant. On the left in the back of Santolina: Callistemon sieberi ‚Widdicombe Gem‘. On the left, in front of the Callistemon with red flowers: Penstemon pinifolius. This plant composition doesn’t exist anymore, I shuffled some of the plants around and to other places. But they all are still living.

Sinocalycanthus chinensis flowered this year for the first time. I’m not a fan of this plant, the snails however are.

Ripe berries of Sorbus rosea.

I liked Thalictrum delavayi ‚Splendide‘. It didn’t come back in spring.

Tulbaghia violacea survived one winter, but not the second.

The delicate flowers of Ugni molinae. It’s not hardy enough and it doesn’t regenerate fast, I have to keep them in a pot.

Ugni molinae is not hardy enough and it doesn’t regenerate fast, I have to keep them in a pot.

Ungnadia speciosa freezes mostly back to the ground.

The berries of Zanthoxylum simulans have a great, overpowering aroma.