Monday, November 22, 2010

The end of our Downunder Spring is nigh!

As Spring is drawing to a close downunder, here in my part of Oz it's been rare to spot blue sky.  It appears briefly, raising our hopes for a fine day and then disappears without a trace.  Here's one of those rare moments of blue-sky splendour.

Today I'm taking a look at what's blooming in my outdoor flower garden bed.  Some may remember a previous post about this wayward child of mine - My Wilful Younger Child  - well, it's looking a whole lot better these days.

My Sprekelia formosissima has risen out of the ground and the first flower has appeared for this year.  Commonly known as Jacobean Lily or Aztec Lily, these flamboyant red flowers look fantastic tucked in behind the Russelia.  I wish I had planted a whole more of these lilies ... they would terrific in a huge clump.  I think I'll have to find another spot where I can do that.

Another stunning beauty that's in flower right now is Turnera subulata - the White Alder.  I love the bright cheery flowers of this plant.  They have a yellow halo around a black centre.  Flowers open around sunrise (unless it's a really dreary overcast day!) and close before sunset.  It's a lovely sight on those mornings when the sun does make an effort!

Another of my Hemerocallis - Daylilies - started blooming this week.  This is Hemerocallis 'Continental Holiday' ... mmm oh how I wish!

The Angelonia serenas are flowering.  They will continue throwing out new bloom spikes for a few months now as they seem to thrive during the Summer months.

This is my favourite Salvia ... Salvia farinacea 'Victoria Blue'.  I just adore the beautiful colour of this.

Another Salvia that I do love is this ... Salvia splendens 'Van Houttei'.  It has the most gorgeous dark burgundy red colour and while it's certainly taking a while to fill out and flourish, it always has a little flower spike on it somewhere.

This brilliant red Gerbera makes a statement next to the white Angelonia serena.

Another plant that's taken a while to establish in this outdoor garden bed is my Scutellaria suffrutescens - the Pink Texas Skullcap or Cherry Skullcap.  Planted last year, it's waited until this Spring to start spreading.  I'm looking forward to seeing it really fill out.

I'm joining Mary at Little Red House for her Mosaic Monday meme, so please take a visit to see other wonderful mosaic posts.

I'm also joining Tootsie for her Flower Flaunt/Fertiliser Friday meme which is always a great place to see what's flowering in gardens all over this great world of ours.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Flower Flaunt on Friday - as Spring draws to a close.

Here we are, it's time for Flaunt Your Flowers/Fertiliser Friday ... and what a dismal day it is here!  We've had more rain, thunderstorms and practically no sunshine for quite some time.  I find myself wishing for and dreaming of our usual bright, sunny Spring days once more.

Some plants are suffering ... as these are not the usual weather conditions here at this time of year ... but not the Plumeria.  It's showing off some lovely flowers.  I just had to include a shot of the petals from the back as well ... it's such a pretty sight.

One thing that is still putting on a show are my Hemerocallis - Daylilies.  However, I've had a surprise this year.  The latest bloom is supposed to be Hemerocallis 'Bela Lugosi'.  This is the bloom that opened up a week ago on the plant ... as it did last year.

However, this week, the plant has thrown up flowers that look like this ...

... it's from the same plant, so my question is ... huh?  There are a couple of flower spikes on this plant, so I'm looking forward to seeing what blooms next.

Elsewhere, around the garden:
Dypsis lutescens - Golden Cane Palm in flower

variegated New Guinea Impatiens



Murraya paniculata, or what we call Mock Orange

Osteospurmum ecklonis

Finally, the Marigolds ... they are craving some decent sunlight.

Around the property and out in the bushland, there are Eucalyptus trees in flower ...

 ...and some of them are attracting quite a bit of birdlife.

Spot the Rainbow Lorikeet!

The beautiful Pale-Headed Rosella ... sorry the photo is not all that clear.  They were a little way off and it was a very dreary day.

The Scaly-Breasted Lorikeet ... the only Lorikeet with a completely green head!

 I swear this fellow was just showing off for the camera!!!

For more Fertiliser Friday posts, pop over to visit Tootsie at Tootsie Time


I'm also joining in Katarina's meme Blooming Friday  Do make sure you visit and have a look at more wonderful posts for this Friday.

Monday, November 15, 2010

It's the end of Spring Downunder - a mosiac Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day post for November

November here has turned out to be pretty dreary so far ... with forecasts of lots more dreary!!  So many dull, grey rainy days ... with the occasional glimpse of blue sky and sunshine!

It's our last month of Spring here in Oz and right now in my north-eastern garden there's quite a bit in bloom.  We've been having a most unusual wet 'dry' season ... which most plants have loved ... and the flowers and fruit have attracted some lovely visitors.  Above you can see the Red-tailed Black Cockatoos feasting on the new flower buds of the Cadaghi Gum and below you can see the Rainbow Lorikeet munching happily on the beautiful Eucalyptus flowers.

Out in the Courtyard Garden the Salvia splendens are coming to the end of their time for this year ...

... but the Salvia guaranitica 'Black and Blue' is taking off once more.

The Ixora 'Twilight Glow' is putting on a splendid display ...

... and the white Jacobinia carnea, also known as Justicea carnea, bursts forth with its fabulous white plumes every few weeks.

The pink Jacobinia, out in an outdoor garden bed, is also showing its pretty plumes ...

... and in that same bed are the gorgeous golden Torenias ...

... the dark pink Mandevilla ...

... and the Angelonia serena, which much prefers hot and dry but it's managing to hold up pretty well.

The Portulacas need sunshine to show their faces, so you have to be quick to spot the gorgeous flowers.

The Hemerocallis are knocking themselves out ...

... and the Plumeria is covered in buds.

 Meanwhile, in the Shadehouse Garden, my great shade lover Costus productus is showing off once more ...

... and the New Guinea Impatiens certainly brightens up the place.

Today I'm joining in Mary's meme 'Mosaic Monday', so please pop over and visit her blog Little Red House

 I'm also joining in Carol's meme 'Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day', so make sure you visit her at May Dreams Gardens

Friday, November 12, 2010

Flower Flaunt on Friday - end-of-Spring in Oz.

November is the beginning of the end for us here ... the end of Spring that is.  Summer is creeping closer and closer and the increasing heat, humidity and the arrival of more rain is certainly having an effect on the garden.  After reporting that the weather had fined up finally in my last Flower Flaunt Friday post ... Flower Flaunt on Friday - mid-Spring Downunder, today is yet another dreary drizzly November day in a string of rainy days over the last fortnight.  This year's 'dry' season has turned out to be a rather wet 'dry'!!!

Plants like the Pelargoniums are not doing all that well any longer ... nowhere near enough sunshine for them and they're not liking the rain or the humidity!  There's fewer blooms on them at the moment.

Strangely, the potted Azaleas out in the courtyard are throwing up a few flowers here and there.  That's rather unexpected for my garden.

Out around the yard I have two Lagerstroemia speciosa - Queen's Myrtles - that are beginning to bloom ... they will continue to flower through early Summer.

Hemerocallis - Daylilies - continue to bloom.  They're providing lovely splashes of vibrant colour right now.

Hemerocallis 'Jamaican Me Crazy'

Hemerocallis 'Francois Verhaert'

Hemerocallis 'Bela Lugosi'

Hemerocallis 'Sabine Baur'

My Mussaenda philippica 'Bangkok Rose' ... also known as 'Queen Sirikit'  ... has begun to bloom again and providing a great show with its pink bracts and small yellow star-shaped flowers.

Lastly, I thought I'd share the flowers on my Costus productus - Spiral Ginger - which is showing off in the shadehouse once more.

For many more great Flaunt Your Flowers Friday/Fertiliser Friday posts, go on over to visit Tootsie at
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