June 23, 2016

Shade Gardens ~ Central Florida

Hot, humid, sunny, and miserable will best describe Florida's weather this week.  Staying indoors all day is not an option for me, so I'm thankful for my shade gardens under the Live Oaks.  The largest of my shade gardens is filled with gingers, cordylines, hostas, caladiums and a variety of elephant ears.

This border is somewhat subdued in color compared to my other shady areas.  I've used mostly 'Miss Muffet' caladiums in here to keep it restful to the eye.

'Gold Dust' Ginger bloomed before it's leaves came out as it's part of the family of  'hidden gingers'.

The flower that preceded the leaves a few weeks ago...

Curcumas are also part of the 'hidden ginger' family, but they bloom after they leaf out.

Curcumas with this garnet striped leaf will have a deep purple bloom in a few weeks...something I'm look forward to.

A Peacock Ginger in front of the border and 'Pink China' Colocasia, with the red of my favorite elephant ears.

A variegated ginger lily with 'Costus Spicatus', or Indiandhead Ginger behind it.

'Freida Hemple' Caladiums, sharing a barrel with a 'Devil's Backbone' plant.

'Mojito' Colocasia, a dwarf Split-Leaf Philodendron,  Tibouchina, and a deep purple Cordyline.

As we leave this border and go to the other side of the yard, there's lots of 'Dark Heart' Coleus planted as a ground cover.

Tractor Seat, or 'Farfugium japonica' is between blooms now, but the big, bold leaves are still beautiful.

Around this Bleeding Heart Vine is where the color really begins.  There's a rainbow of coleuses and caladiums mixed with hostas, toad lilies, and curcumas.

   Coleuses come in a vast array of colors and shapes and if they reseed they're usually something altogether different from anything you initially planted.  In my zone 9 garden, they behave as an annual and have to be replaced each year.  They root easily in water or soil, so you can make many plants from one.


Caladium bulbs can remain in the ground year round in Florida, returning faithfully each spring.  Too many varieties to name, but that is 'Kathleen' planted in the pot.

I think my favorite caladiums are the ones edged with a contrasting border, like this group behind a toad lily.

The shade gardens seemed to get off to a slow start this year, or maybe I'm not as patient as I once was.  Before summers gone, most caladiums will be knee high. 

One last look at 'Pink Lady' in morning's first light.

Thanks for visiting.

June 15, 2016

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day ~ June 2016 ~ Central Florida

June is prime time for blooms, as long as you're growing hardy perennials.  Central Florida's heat index has reached triple digits several days and even our afternoon showers are not having much of a cooling affect.  
This morning a lovely fog lay upon the gardens and with it came a quietness that you always wish could last a little longer.  It encloses one as a cocoon, obscuring an entire neighborhood.  Agapanthus, daylilies and roses all looked refreshed after last evening's rain... 

It didn't take long for Florida's sun to burn off the fog, and soon to feel as though I were in a sauna.  Thankfully, daylilies love the sun.

My daylilies are older varieties, all repeat bloomers.  They will outlast the blue Agapanthus, but not the yellow Thryallis shrub, nor the red Knockout rose.

Thryallis bloom.

The afternoon rains have caused rampant growth in my sun gardens, loving it.

When the blue Agapanthus are gone, I'll still have the beautiful blue of this Clerodendrum ugandense, or blue butterfly bush.  It's an easy care shrub, like the Thryallis.

 This shrub will bloom all summer until frost.

Daylilies that are blooming now, 'Kwanso'...


'Pandora's Box'

 Two  reds...

 Crepe Mrytle blooms were hanging low this morning, weighted down from last night's shower.  This is a 'Natchez',  mildew resistant. easy care.

Not only is the bloom of these trees beautiful, but their fall foliage is a handsome red-orange.  The bark of this tree is also a winning attribute...peeling to reveal a rich, cinnamon brown.

Another wonderful shrub for Florida, Hamelia patens or firebush, is a magnet for butterflies and hummingbirds.  In the background, Clerodendrum paniculatum, Pagoda of my favorites!

I'll close with a shade plant bloom, Tricyrtis, Toad Lily...

Blooms from around the world are being shared over at May Dreams Gardens.  Happy Gardening!

June 8, 2016

Shade And Sun Gardens

This is my first post on my new blog, Garden On Fourth Street.  I was able to import most of my first garden blog, Gardening Outside The Lines, so all is not lost.  If you're reading this, you've found me...yay!  My last few posts have been focused on my full sun gardens in front of the house, because Spring is all about blooms.  Today we're also going to visit my shade gardens under the oaks, around back. Caladiums have returned faithfully, as they do each year.  Along with them, toad lilies, cordylines, hostas, gingers of all kinds, and hydrangeas.

You simply can't beat caladiums for color in the shade, and I love to mix a bunch together for large barrels.

Toad Lilies just beginning to bloom in this border...

Across the yard, this shade garden is planted with a variety of gingers, colocasias, and cordylines.  The large plant to the right, Costus spicatus, Indianhead Ginger.

Indianhead Gingers flowers, with a variegated Ginger Lily in foreground.

One of my favorite Colocasias, 'Mojito'.

First of many Curcuma Ginger blooms...

A lacecap hydrangea that I've had a long time.

And a new one, unnamed, that I found on the clearance rack this year.

Now, back to full sun blooms!  Just as the 'Lemon' daylilies begin to slow down, the orange 'Kwanso' and 'Ditch'  daylilies  join in the parade.  Oranges are my favorite!  Agapanthus and Gaura lindheimeri are still going strong. 

 Gerbera Daisy, in front of  hydrangeas which are beginning to fade to mauve.

Zinnias are still standing, in spite of winds and driving rains a couple days ago...

First Mexican Tithonia bloom.

Hoping your gardens are filled with blooms!  Until next time...