Sunday, May 20, 2007

Grooving on Sedums

My son-in-law knows the direct route to my heart: take GrannyJ shopping at the nursery. Which he did following the little one's dance debut last week.

A totally unexpected (and expensive) treat was in store: a table quite full of little four inch pots of sedums. All kinds. Three of them totally new to me. Could I resist? No way. Here are the little fellows, Sedum1, Sedum2 and Sedum3:

For good measure, I also took home this pretty hen-and-chickens pot.

Now I have two sites I want you to visit, while we're on the subject of gardening succulents and exotica. The first is on the other side of the world, below the equator. My Aloe Garden features more kinds of aloe than you or I ever dreamed of. And next is k, who has posted a blow-by-blow report on the blossoming of her heart-of-flame, a tropical exotic she rescued from the trash heap and nurtured back to good health. I suggest you page down to about May 9 to get the beginning of the saga; once you have watched her flower bloom and got to know k, then read the rest of her blog. She's a wonder, k is, a real survivor burdened with incredible health issues.

6 comments:

herhimnbryn said...

Don't Sedums have stunning shapes? I have a couple of post that are now crammed with the plants. Guess I will have to do some dividing soon.

Gail Rae said...

Yes, Granny J, surprisingly, our plot of land actually has soil! It seems that the third owner before us was a gardener who was much loved by all our neighbors and owned the house for several years. My neighbor to the west told me, when we first bought the house, that this previous owner had truckloads of soil brought in and spread all parts of the front and back yards. Our immediately previous neighbor, who wasn't interested in gardening, covered two of these more prominent areas right in front of the house with gravel...in one area there's 2-3 inches of it. But, luckily, he left most of the other soil areas alone and covered one soil area in the back with a very thin layer of pea gravel, which has been easy to work into the soil. I've managed to scatter and work some of the gravel in one front area down, which is where I put the roses and delphinium Mom got for Mother's Day. Plus, the immediately previous owner, probably in order to sell the property, planted an apple and pear tree in back. We've neglected these, until this year, but by dint of the previously shipped in soil, they've survived, although thinly, on their own. This year I'm finally nurturing them. They won't have fruit this year (although they did blossom), but, maybe next year.
The rest of the dirt, especially in the wild back third, is the native granite/clay mix...I leave that area pretty much wild, although, this year, I've had my yard guys cleaning out all the dead stuff (except for a few dead trees that are still standing and provide homes for birds and rodents and such) in that area in order to reduce fire danger, but other than that, it hosts an amazing variety of native plants.
Plus, I've established three compost bins on the property, which are pretty regularly scavenged by javelina, although I continue to try all kinds of things to keep them secure...the latest is a garlic oil product which, at the moment, seems to be working. This year, I'm harvesting lots of rich compost from one of the bins and putting it to work on the stuff we've planted. We'll see how successful everything is. I'm famous for killing plants. My neighbor to the west, who used to be the neighborhood's gem of a gardener (she and her husband are both too disabled, now, to work their area...so they've abandoned gardening and have a crew come in and sweep their property clean twice a year, now, and leave it alone otherwise) and was hoping to make me into a gardener, and is, I believe, secretly disgusted that I've let all the soil "go to waste" in previous years, seems to be pleased with what I'm doing, but skeptical...I don't blame her!
I know our water bill is going to be boosted by all our domestication in the forward part of our yard, so I'm waiting to see what sort of bills we're going to be getting but, hopefully, they won't be so high that I'll have to abandon what we're doing. Truth is, because of the imported soil and the general magnificence of this little plot, all kinds of things take root and grow all over the place on their own...so I'm hoping that I can keep the yard encouraging to my mother AND have reasonable water bills!
Okay...I'm going to try to post this, now...wish me luck!

Steve G said...

For a man with a brown thumb, those look great. Do they take alot of time and care or just a little water?

Granny J said...

hhb -- I love the different shapes -- and colors you find in sedum. The flowers? On most, a shrug.

gail rae -- I think I envy you, having Real Soil; on the other hand, I can relax with my pots and my mountain mahogany thicket uphill.

Steve -- all they take is sunshine & a little water. Sedums fill space... do ground cover ... in other words, serve the gardener well.

k said...

Those sedums are just beautiful. I'm starting to get really interested in them. Walter likes them too and they would go great in his Western Garden.

I had no idea they were so various. Lots of possibilities that way, to combine different plants for different looks. Interesting.

And thank you very much! That flower was just amazing. And...you're the first to hear...I have not one but 2 more in the back yard that just turned that florescent color!

WHEEEEEEE!!!

Granny J said...

k -- actually, I think there are sedums from everywhere. I make a point of checking nurseries in wet places (Memphis) and in dry places (AZ). But they can get along on a modicum of water. But, like you noticed, the cool thing about the plants is how varied they are. Great for rock gardens & filling in big & little vacancies.

 
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