Tuesday, July 11, 2006

And now for a bit of gardening....

When you buy a pre-owned home you get a pre-owned garden. My 1956 house came with a fabulous, but overgrown lilac, an ok, but overgrown mock orange, a few trim-me-into-a-mutant-poodle shrubs, and way too much yellowing, thirsty lawn. I bought in April and by July I had a $200 water bill. My plans for an eventual xeric landscape were suddenly moved up. That was 4 years ago. My progress is excedingly slow, but coming along. About 50% of the front lawn has been dug out and replaced with lavendars, russian sage, salvias, and other xeric perennials. I also planted 3 curl-leaf mountain mahoganies which should eventually grow into small tree/large shrub status.
Along with the poodle bushes, I inherited two specimens of a weird-ass looking species. Here is the larger of them, currently in bloom. The flowers are daisy-like, yet the foliage is absolutely not daisy-like. It took me a while to figure out that it is Lingularia X palmatiloba, otherwise known as "leopard plant". The reason it took so long to find is that it is a bog plant. Now I ask you, who would plant a bog plant in the desert!? It was a bit anemic looking at first, but really took off when I added it to the drip system. Eventually it needs to be dug out and moved into the back yard, next to the (someday) fish pond.

I hope to replace them with Lena's brooms (Cytisus scoparius 'lena'). I have one already and it is briefly stunning every spring.

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