Sunday, March 16, 2014

FOLIAGE FOLLOW UP DAY, MARCH 2014

This maybe the first time I have posted on Foliage Follow up Day but it seems appropriate today as many spring blooms are missing from my garden.
I think, like Pam I have to give first of the day to Whale's Tongue agave, Agave ovatifolia. I have two of these, both in the front courtyard garden, but they differ slightly in their structure one being more open that the other.



I was prompted to call the nursery when I noticed a pup forming underneath the one directly above. Not supposed to happen. However the seed supplier in Germany stood by his seed saying it was definitely A.ovatifolia. I'm not unhappy with this one but I don't think it is quite as attractive as the one at the top.

This Agave lophantha was a passalong. I know some who would not entertain its spiky leaves, which would rip your hands to shreds in a moment. I love it for its green color. It has that bright green streak running through the center; not unlike A. lophantha quadricolor, my next passalong. Gosh, I love this one and I can't have enough of them, which is good because my friend Bob always has tens of these to share.

I can see that this year I will need to move the bulbs of the Tulipa clusiana as the Agave parryi is making their life very difficult.


I have another Agave parryi this one 'truncata' Both came from the Desert Botanic Garden in Phoenix.


All these plants add drama and interest to the garden year round.


What would I do without Agave weberi? What would I do without my neighbor? Every one came from his garden. This agave has a high pupping propensity. I think they look magnificent among the rocks and despite a few blemishes they have survived this horrible winter.


The star of my back garden is the Yucca rostrata. How I wish I had bought more of them at the time. It was just a tiny thing in a pot and has grown incredibly over the past 6 years. What a show stopper this plant is and not dangerous at all.


Spineless prickly pear cactus and squid agave, Agave bracteosa, fill another corner of this garden. Squid agave is another heavy pup maker.


It will be quite a contrast for the secluded garden on the side of the house to have something so prickly. I made this hyertuffa pot especially for this Dyckia.
I still have lots of other green plants like pittosporum, Indian hawthorn and the beautiful viburnum but I thought I'd shine a spotlight on my prickly plants on this Foliage Follow Up Day. Thanks for hosting Pam.

28 comments:

  1. I loved this look at your prickly plants, all in such beautiful condition. I like the form better on your whale's tongue at the top too, the recurving leaves make it special.

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  2. So glad you posted to the foliage affair. Now it's official: you have the most perfect garden--bloom AND foliage heaven. That Y. rostrada is a plant that is growing on me--I'll have to figure out a spot for one in my garden.

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  3. I love the shot of the Agave weberi among the rocks! Hope my Y. rostrada is that size someday too!

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  4. All your spiky foliage plants look great but I'm particularly enamored with the Agave weberi. They look great among the boulders!

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  5. I wonder if we'll ever know the real story behind our German-seeded A. ovatifolias. I see lots of photos online that look like our more upright specimens. To further complicate the issue, I am seeing some new A. ovatifolia varieties in the specialty catalogs from Greg Starr ('Frosty Blue'), Tony Avent ('Flipper') and Kelly Griffin ('Vanzie'). I think I might plant a Y. rostrada on the east side of my house.

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    1. I think you are right Caroline and I think we expect nature to repeat itself perfectly but very often it does not. I think even agave experts have difficulty with identification. Y rostrata is a lovely plant and will love your east side location.

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  6. The Dyckia looks perfect in the hyertuffa pot you made. I really like the Yucca rostrata. and the Agave weberi is a show stopper.

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  7. Tina is right -- perfection in bloom AND foliage in your garden! I've always admired how you offset your billowing English flower garden with the structure and Texas-ness of agaves, prickly pear, and yuccas. Thanks so much for joining in this month!

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    1. My pleasure Pam. I was long overdue giving my foliage some kudos.

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  8. I covet every single one of your beautiful specimens. Oh how I hope to see your garden in person someday!

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    1. I hope you get to come to Austin someday. We can give you lots of garden tours!

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  9. Your garden seems to have gotten through all our cold this year with little to no damage. Between deer and cold, all my Agave weberi of any size have damage on every "leaf". So disappointing. I'm torn between taking them out and starting over with smaller undamaged specimens, or trimming out the worst of the damage and turning a semi-blind eye to their imperfections. I'll wait a few more weeks to live with the view before deciding. I'm certainly grateful they pup prolifically.

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    1. I do have a few cold damage spots. Nothing horrendous though. They are in very dry soil and we were saved by a dry winter. They do grow very quickly and in the end the big ones have to come out anyway. Now would be the time to start over.

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  10. I love the a. weberi. How do you keep the deer from shredding it? I have to cage most of my yuccas and agaves, here.
    I like the quadracolor, too. Lost the one I got at Ally's Go-Go. I washed away in the flood.
    Happy 'Green' Day.

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    1. One does have damage. Took me a while to realize what it was. Good job they pup.

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  11. Wow, what beautiful specimens. They are clearly thriving in your garden.

    I just planted a 2nd Agave ovatifolia this past Saturday, and it also has a pup (albeit tiny). My plant came from the UC Botanical Garden in Berkeley; I don't know if they started it from seed or got it from somewhere else, but it's clear that there are some pupping ovatifolia in circulation. I will remove the pup as soon as it's big enough for a 4-inch pot. I can't imagine it would be good having two giants growing so close together.

    How large is the hypertufa trough you made for your dyckia? The combination of the two looks awesome.

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    1. My pup is still under the plant. Fortunately it has not grown to any size and I just can't get my hand under there to get it out because the lower leaves are on the ground. The pot is 18" square. It was not my intention to have it where it is now but when I put it in the original spot I had picked out for it, in the front garden, it just didn't look right. Much better here where there is another trough.

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  12. Awesome plants! I lost a lot of marginal spikey plants this year.

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    1. It really has been a tough year. I think dryness may have saved most of ours.

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  13. Your agaves are a spectacular display. I see agaves growing here where drainage is exquisite but I haven't a spot where I think they would best fit.

    To answer your question, Easter Cactus is Rhipsalidopsis-Sym(Hatiora). Mine were cuttings from a friend.

    I am reluctant to tell you the 'secret' to orchids. I water orchids when a spathephyllum wilts. If I think of it, I fertilize with a weak solution, probably not nearly often enough. They ask for very little and I suspect that most love them to death.

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    1. Thanks for the id. I love plants that come from friends. I bought some orchid fertilized but then again I was gone for 6 week and it never even got a drop of water.

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  14. Prickly never looked so good. I love the way you effortlessly blend cactus into your cottage style garden.

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    1. How I wish the 'effortlessly' part was true. Far from it I'm afraid. Need to get rid of the cottage style bit!

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  15. What a gorgeous post this is. Your garden always inspires me.

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  16. I love foliage Follow Up and your Agaves are wonderful. They look great coming out of the blue bonnets in your latest post.

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  17. LOVE, love, love your outstanding foliage. I may have to break down and get a Y. rostrata. I truly adore them; will see if they love me. On moving plants, am moving asters away from my pallidas!

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  18. Love love love your foliage!

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