Sunday, April 17, 2016

YES! YOU CAN HAVE ALLIUMS

It's one plant I have never seen growing in a garden in Texas. Many years ago I bought a packet of allium bulbs. They were purple and looked quite large on the packet. They were no bigger than a nickle when they flowered.......one time and never to be seen again. I think they may have been drumstick alliums but they were too tiny to appreciate their blooms.


So when a gardening friend gave me some multiplying onions and they went to flower I thought to myself that they would look very attractive in the garden. And so they do. And the red admiral butterflies adore the flowers. And they come back year after year. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with white.

That's what I was saying when the first of my foxgloves started to open. A look of disappointment did pass across my face. I had picked up 6, 6" pots at my local nursery in January. I potted them up and actually took them over to my neighbors house to care for them while we were gone for the month of February. One thing an English girl has to have is her foxgloves.


But as the week wore on the flowers began to take on more of a pink tinge and today they are feeling extremely at home in the rain.


They have a little more pink in them than the flowers we call 'foxgloves' in Texas. That is the Penstemon cobaea, which I also have in my garden. You can see the resemblance.



I'm hoping there may be a diversity of color in the other 5 of my plants. Maybe something like this wild foxglove growing in a hedgerow in England.


The great thing about foxgloves is that for me they flower after all the bluebonnets and other early wildflowers have faded and they go on flowering well into May, sending up many bloom stalks on the one plant. They are well worth the effort of finding those 4" pots in the late winter.

6 comments:

  1. I'd given up on Alliums myself until I saw some beautiful varieties in glorious bloom recently at The Getty just 35 miles to the north. Of course, the Getty probably has the funds to plant new bulbs every year but perhaps I'll try them again anyway. I understand your adoration of foxgloves. Have you tried Digiplexis, the Digitalis-Isoplexis hybrid?

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    1. That's what I read Kris. Annuals only in warmer places and much too expensive for that. I haven't tried digiplexis because I haven't seen it for sale here. I wonder how it would fare with our hot humid summers.

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  2. I adore foxglove--nothing says "country" like them. I grow all mine from seed ---I had a devil of a time getting them established until I read --on your site!-- about how well things germinated under rock. I tried it and FINALLY got my beloved foxglove. So thank you!--and good luck with the rest of yours being more of the color you want.

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    1. I'm glad you had success. I tried once but being biennials its difficult to get the timing right. Thank goodness my nursery carries them.

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  3. Why are there no alliums in Texas? You have good climate for onion flowers.
    That is one beautiful Penstemon cobaea. I tried growing it but year after year no luck with cobaea.

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    1. I have read that we can only grow them as annuals which would be an expensive venture.

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