12 April, 2011

April flowers, not from around here

As I walk the garden, I know whether that plant is commonorgarden / exotic / alien / foreign. Those are the plants I look at for this mid-month garden walk. 

Aeonium 'Moroccan rose'

Turning to autumn South African plants whose home is on the east, summer rainfall side of our country, heave a sigh of relief and burst into bloom. Those are the in your face plants now. Which I will show you on Wildflower-Wednesday for the 27th. The commonorgarden will be leaning heavily on roses. When there are roses, to lean on. I have picked about a dozen. One. By one. But the rose garden is looking thoughtful.

Perfume Passion, Great North
Burning Sky, 'apricot'

The newer varieties are better able to deal with the shock of, our roots are in the cooler Northern hemisphere you know. The only one who has learnt Roses 101 – keep your leaves lush and green to shade your stems in summer – is Perfume Passion. That bush stands shoulder to shoulder with me, covered in leaves. Great North has decided, after years, to send up a vigorous new sprout from the base. Fragile nameless inherited and transplanted apricot, is also saying OK and sprouting up.

Tropical Sunset, Courvoisier
'Anna's Red', Sheila's Perfume

We have Anna’s Red, Courvoisier (cut and brought into the kitchen to enjoy, they smell luscious, of ripe fruit), and a twirl on top of the Tropical Sunset bud. 

The other/foliage half of my Persian garden story
The Dark Side,  glaucous blue-grey
gold and velvety silver

Prunus nigra

Trying to learn from mistakes, perhaps we won’t replace the unhappy roses. But will instead develop the other part of the Paradise garden idea. The four different colours of foliage, four rivers of Paradise in a Persian garden. The velvety silver, the gold, the Dark Side, the glaucous blue-grey. 

Guava, giant/Spanish reeds
pecan, Pride of India (from China) 

Australian brush cherry, guava

Most of our edibles, fruit trees and herbs, are aliens. Australian brush cherry. American pecan. Tropical American guava.

Aeonium, Echeveria
lemon verbena, Salvia greggei

My sole South American – lemon verbena. Echeveria – the Mexican rose, named for a Mexican botanical artist.  Echeveria and Aeonium, both crassulas, but the Aeonium is from Morocco. Flaming pink Salvia greggei, keeping the pecan company in North America.


Abelia, another Mexican – I have loved, with its delicate shell pink bells and glossy pointed leaves – since I first explored the garden, secateurs in hand, looking for something to enjoy in a vase.

Where does that plant come from? My source is usually – Kristo Pienaar’s The South African What Flower is that?

Pictures and words 
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)


  1. You have such an impressive array of plants!

  2. Hi Diana, Thank you for showing your roses - they are beautiful!

  3. I enjoyed the walk through your garden. You do such a great job of keeping track of plants, knowing what grows where, and you really are a constant gardener.

    I've not visited Blotanical in months. I guess I'm an inactive member, but I put my two cents in. I'm not much interested in awards unless they come with a hefty grand prize! Just kidding.

  4. Many South African plants do well in my garden, especially the ones that grow from a bulb.

  5. Am I remembering right that you just recently planted the salvia greggii? I'd think it would be incredibly happy in your part of the world.

    Those are, indeed, some pensive looking roses. :) The photo of the aeonium 'Moroccan rose' is just stunning--what a beautiful color!

  6. Dear Diana,
    wonderful plant pictures!
    The Persian garden idea is great, the assortment of plants is pleasing.
    Have a nice day

  7. Not a lot of flowers around this part of the country at the moment, but hopefully soon the aloes will start to flower.

  8. Stacy - the greggei is a passalong from my mother. Came to this garden as a few tiny cuttings. US bloggers teaching me about hummingbirds showed me, this is a North American plant. Much loved by our sunbirds in turn.

  9. Dear Diana,
    I was so busy with my own blogging-hell that I didn´t recognized really your post!
    Seem to be hard for roses in this climate or did I missunderstand?
    Today my husband has to go to make pictures in the garden cause I have to work again, still feeling a little unwell... After work I will post the April GBBT, thanks for your support!
    Wish you a nice day!

  10. I too have enjoyed the walk in your garden. Your guava and grasses looks quite different from mine. I wish I have more time to spend in Blotanical. It is quite slow to access from my area.

  11. What a beautiful "virtual" tour through your garden! Thanks :)

  12. I'm not familiar with Abelia; it's a very pretty plant. I could imagine it would look good both outside and in a vase. -Jean

  13. I really love you Echeverias! Here we could just have them in the house!
    Mr. Linky maybe has to be changed a bit and then it will work, thanks for telling me!
    Herzliche GrĂ¼sse!

  14. You grow so many pretty plants that I can only grow in the greenhouse. They are really captive plants in plant prison, longing to be outside where they belong.

  15. Diana, So fun to see plants from a totally different climate. I love the Australian brush cherry. I think the photo is of the cherries, edible I guess. What do the flowers look like? Carolyn

  16. It is the texture of the leaves i love most in your photos now. The collages are marvelous too.

  17. Carolyn - we eat the cherries, but, the birds don't seem to like them. The flowers - small fuzzy white, an uninspired version of the Eucalyptus.

  18. Hi Diana, My fave rose in your garden is Perfume Passion - the others are too busy being pensive to do the course and learn to behave! Your colours and textures are very varied. I find I have to consciously add some green foliage, because I naturally am attracted - addicted to the silvery blue-grey shades. cheers, cm

  19. How interesting that you grow the American pecan there. That is Texas's state tree, and they are all over the place in Austin. I like that you included bark in your Foliage Follow-Up post!


Photographs and Copyright

Photographs are from Diana Studer or Jurg Studer.
My Canon PowerShot A490

If I use your images or information, it will be clearly acknowledged with either a link to the website, or details of the book. If you use my images or words, I expect you to acknowledge them in turn.

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