Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The KAFM 88.1 Native Garden revisited, one year on.

January 2015


Weeds and rain runoff, 2015.

Now; September 2016
Young plants planted after June of last year have only been watered once this year- in July.  
Does the Zinnia grandiflora tone down that lovely fire hydrant, Susan?  

Admittedly, a few foreigners have snuck into 1304 Ute Avenue's "Native Garden." I did not expect he mediterranean Limonium minutum, or Dwarf Statice, to not only survive but bloom unirrigated. It's 3" tall.

Interesting pollinators have been attracted. This bee rests on Sideroxylon lanuginosum, Gum Bumelia or Chittamwood, a dry Texas tree which has done remarkably well in this trial.  

We are honing in on the grass swath treatment; it's not perfect yet.  But it sure beats boxwood hedge.

The idea of a hybrid Mongolian plant dead in heaps around a native is a little ironic in memory of some of the stories of Genghis Khan's activities with Jin China.

I get a certain diabolical pleasure from chopping up and mulching my natives with plants which are not as appropriate as they are.  Here, a trial California Manzanita (Arctostaphylos glauca) enjoys a cooling skirt of blue mist spirea carcasses.  (Caryopteris x clandonensis)  I'll confess that the blue mist is a great bee feeding plant with a great xeric constitution, but its so over-used and poorly designed with.

The most guiltless joy was Euonymous getting chipped.  Now I'm a proper sicko.

We are adding new plants to fill in, experiment, or replace the few weaklings who failed.  
Our new system is to flag new plants within an established landscape so we remember to water them.  The flag may as well double as one of the shade-cloth's stakes.  It's easy to forget when you don't water anywhere else.

A couple corners where we took time to remove the worst of perennial weeds (Bermudagrass and field bindweed) are finally clean, so they just got plugged to fill in with the grass- Alkali dropseed.  Sporobolus airoides.  

An experiment in progress, Mentzelia decapetala in bud right of the door.
Stay tuned.  The crevice garden was full of educational disaster! 


Susan in the Pink Hat said...

The yellow blob needs to be a bigger yellow blob. And the strip would look even better with a splash of blue, say, from Spirea clandonensis since that fire hydrant has two uber bright colors to offset. Such plant snobbery. Maybe you can dial the plant elitism to 11 & see how the DBG propagation of Ceanothus greggii var. franklinii and get one to trial here.

Kenton J. Seth said...

Bigger yellow blob: Yes ma'am, the Zinnia tells me it will do that.
I'll be in the line to try out C. greggii v. franklinii if they start busting out trays of that thing for us all to kill. There are two Ceonothus at KAFM- C. fendleri, and integerrimus I brought back from Prescott.

What's that- dial 811 for utility locate and 011 for plant elitism?

Kevin Pykkonen said...

C'mon A. glauca! Give us that tall and narrow form, we are ready for it.

Where are the Caesalpinia repens?

Kenton J. Seth said...

Out in Utah.

Sitting in the nursery at home; I'm scared to plant them. Down to two.
Maybe they should go in soon...