I was early for Gail's Wildflower-Wednesday. Last week the flowers were foreign, today they are Proudly South African. Perhaps the spirit of WFW is more about the wildflowers that would grow in my garden, if nature decided. Yellow Oxalis. White rain daisies on otherwise bare earth. In the damp hollows Melianthus and arum lilies. Where the winter rain leaves a few inches of standing water, vlei lilies.
Most of my bulbs were grown from seed. Fairy bells of Melasphaerula. White Babiana inherited from the previous gardener. Vlei lilies, seed didn’t work, so I bought bulbs with delight, when I found them. Arum lily snuck in with a Strelitzia. Freesia alba once from seed, now self-sown. Dietes some inherited, some from seed, some as bulbs – but somehow, they are all the same species.
|Melasphaerula, Babiana, vlei lily|
arum, Freesia alba, Dietes
Chasmanthe should be yellow, but the orange bobs up. Oxalis to strike fear in the heart of Californian gardeners, this has seeded in the crook of the ash tree, and waves its flowers in my face! The orange Clivia sulks and dwindles; the yellow threatens to burst out of its pot. Ifafa lilies flower on.
Clivia, Ifafa lily
The first of the scabious with masses of buds poised fatly. Plectranthus neochilus with architectural spires at ankle height. Melianthus up high, with birds bickering over nectar. Solitary Dianthus (sorry, that's what you get when you schedule posts ahead - Dianthus is NOT one of our wildflowers!)
|Scabious, Plectranthus neochilus|
On the Karoo Koppie, the winter aloes are stalks with seeds. Now the highest flowers are Euphorbia mauretanica a cushion of lime gold. Cotyledon orbiculata blooms on. We have tangerine and lemon Bulbinella. And the vygies begin, the taller shrubby Lampranthus and The Others (not good at IDing succulents).
|Euphorbia mauretanica, Bulbinella, Cotyledon orbiculata, ?? vygie|
Lampranthus twice, Bulbinella
I don’t do annuals, but I do do shrubs. One of the Podalyria calyptrata had a hidden label ‘white’ and so it is. The Buddleja sends out swoons of fragrance. Jasmine is fragrant if you get up close and personal. Knoffel buchu, with its garlic leaves.
|Podalyria calyptrata, Buddleja|
Jasmine, knoffel buchu
Podalyria calyptrata in the gentle sweetpea colours I expected. Pink bells of Dombeya hanging down, and needing to be uplifted for the camera. Hazy soft mauve wild sage. The only survivor of the fynbos garden I tried, Erica baccans, berry heath for the shape of the little flowers.
|Podalyria calyptrata, Dombeya|
sage, Erica baccans
Ribbon bush Hypoestes such delicate flowers. Clerodendron Oxford and Cambridge bush with blue butterfly flowers. Tiny blue Freylinia flowers. And you all recognise sky blue Plumbago?
Bruinsalie. Salvia africana-lutea. Once the burnt orange flowers fall, the sepals remain, as ornamental as the flowers, but in burnished burgundy. Yellow, orange and red Tecomaria.
|Top right Salvia africana-lutea|
Three colours of Tecomaria
Species Pelargoniums, some from seed, some passalong. And my favourite nutmeg pelargonium, kidney shaped spicy leaves and tiny white flowers. patientgardener a-new-passion-species-pelargoniums
|Bottom right nutmeg pelargonium|
These daisies are all Proudly South African. Kingfisher blue Felicia, this one with green and white leaves. Cream and yellow Gazania. Dimorphotheca in deepest purple and gentlest yellow (also pink and white).
|White Dimorphotheca pluvialis, purple Dimorphotheca jucunda|
cream and yellow Gazanias
blue Felicia, yellow Dimorphotheca jucunda
‘Now is the winter of our discontent’ NOT. Summer is forgotten, we have had some rain.
by Diana of Elephant's Eye
- wildlife gardening in Porterville,
near Cape Town in South Africa
(If you mouse over brown text,
it turns shriek pink. Those are my links.)