The MGS Forum

Miscellaneous => Miscellaneous => Topic started by: John J on May 15, 2015, 06:15:53 AM

Title: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on May 15, 2015, 06:15:53 AM
I do not profess to be a great photographer, or even a particularly good one, there are posters out there who are far better than I, so perhaps we could take up Alisdair's suggestion (challenge?) regarding posting a daily photo. I can't promise to produce one on a daily basis, especially since next week I'll be away in northern Greece on a MGS organised walking tour. That may provide a fund of shots for the future with luck. The photos don't need to be on any particular topic,    just anything that might prove of interest or merely be a pleasure to look at to brighten the day.
One of our habits on getting up in the morning is to make a cup of tea and wander around the garden to see what has happened or opened overnight. This morning we found our first open flower of Oenothera biennis. What could be a brighter start to the day than this, reflecting the rising sun.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Pauline on May 15, 2015, 11:19:16 AM
I love Facebook - but not for anything apart from chit-chat and ephemeral stuff. It's an excellent and easy way of keeping up with friends and far-flung family, and has put me in touch with several people I had lost track of and would never have found otherwise. It's great for showing pictures but it's absolutely useless for the other stuff we do in here, mainly because it is so ephemeral and you can't search.

It's a sad truth that FB has been slowly killing off forums that previously thrived, and in the case of the specialist ones (such as Real Gardeners and Photography Cafe) it's a real shame.
I don't, alas, have any suggestions. I've always thought it was possible to do more than one thing, but so many people these days seem to want one to choose.

On the subject of photos: I could crop them to the right size before sending them, but you'd have to first identify the subject, so it would probably all take just as long.  ;)

Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on May 15, 2015, 04:38:15 PM
Re.Alisdair's photos on FB. Recently I was googling to find the MGS website to see if there is anything new apart from the Forum. The first result of the search is the full MGS site. Immediately after it came
www.facebook.com/MediterraneanGardenSociety
And there were all the photos and Alisdair's remarks, plus a lot of other stuff.
I did not join FB and , of course, won't be joining in any discussion. I have not given my name or address. But it is excellent to be able to access what Alisdair is producing. I hope the facility lasts.
I write as a tech novice but perhaps others will be able to see the photos too. Thanks Alisdair for all the work and time.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on May 15, 2015, 05:38:52 PM
Thanks, Joanna, very much appreciated!
Title: Cistanche phelypaea
Post by: John J on May 16, 2015, 05:28:29 AM
Having tentatively begun the posting of photos on this thread can I continue with an unusual broomrape.
Alisdair recently posted a photo on the MGS Facebook page taken on this year's Morocco trip. I wasn't on that one but I was on the one last year and as we drove along the highway bordering Agadir airport the leader spotted this parasitic plant growing in the central reservation. The 2 minibuses parked and the local population were probably astonished to witness a group of, obviously demented, foreigners crossing 2 lanes of traffic to examine and photograph what to them was probably a common weed. The plant in question is Cistanche phelypaea.
Title: Polygala balansae
Post by: John J on May 17, 2015, 04:22:01 AM
Another wildflower from last year's Morocco trip, Polygala balansae.
Title: Waterfalls of Ouzoud in Morocco
Post by: John J on May 17, 2015, 07:14:36 PM
My preconceived ideas about Morocco being a dry, dusty place took a distinct knock when we were taken to the waterfalls at Ouzoud.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on May 18, 2015, 07:04:45 AM
i doubt if we will be going to Morocco but I have the book, just in case.
The waterfalls are listed under Cascades d'Ouzound.

Looking forward to seeing more photos  from Morocco
Title: Garden irrigated with grey water
Post by: John J on May 26, 2015, 05:24:18 AM
Have returned from the MGS trip to Epirus in northern Greece. While I sort out the couple of hundred or so photos I took here is a shot of the private garden accessed from our bathroom in the Riad Dar al Hossoun in Taroudant, Morocco. The water from the shower ran down to a small hole at the base of the window and out into the garden. Also the drain pipe from the hand basins carried the water outside for the plants.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on May 26, 2015, 09:55:15 AM
Interesting.
I am always worried about the soapy water, from balconies and cars being washed, getting  into the beds where there are some trees here in the yard of the building.
So far nothing has keeled over and died, in fact a self sown apricot tree is very healthy
Title: Narcissus poeticus
Post by: John J on May 27, 2015, 08:02:07 AM
From Morocco to Greece. Members of the MGS trip to the Epirus region of northern Greece on the first day in an area full of Narcissus poeticus. Just a pity that technology has not yet discovered how to transmit scent as well as vision!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: royscot on May 27, 2015, 10:36:43 PM
Hi, as a newish member can I come back to Daisy's original post on this subject. She seemed to make a good initial point that all these wonderful plant photos are being put on Facebook (with appropriate comment) almost daily but do not appear on the MGS website (although perhaps some have been put on in the past) for the benefit of its members. It was also mentioned that the forum seemed to be dying a bit. I was a professional garden designer in the UK and having moved to Spain in retirement, am now in the process of developing my own Spanish garden. Although I know a lot about plants which grow well in the UK, I know almost nothing about med plants and the link recently provided to the Facebook page (which I now appreciate I can access without actually going on Facebook) has been a revelation and I am downloading an encyclopedia of plants that I can examine further and decide which ones would be suitable for my garden.

It occurs to me that most new members, like me, initially join because they have moved to a Med climate and want info on their new location and what plants to grow. Perhaps the MGS is not providing enough direct info (and photos) on plants on its website as opposed to Facebook. Perhaps the forum would be more active if this was provided.

Apologies if this is totally offbeam but just my initial thoughts on this subject.
Title: Phlomis fruticosa
Post by: John J on May 28, 2015, 06:48:48 AM
Most of you are probably familiar with Phlomis fruticosa. In certain areas of the mountains of northern Greece they coat the hillsides in a mass of yellow.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on May 28, 2015, 07:11:29 AM
Royscot, thanks for your input. May I ask if you have looked back over previous posts, especially those in the 'Plants for mediterranean gardens' section? I feel that there is a wealth of information contained there regarding plants that are suitable for mediterranean climate gardens, often with photos attached. I realise that there is no fixed template that defines a mediterranean garden due to the vagaries of location, altitude, etc, but that is where the experiences of members who have actually grown the plants in question is so valuable. I also realise that it involves a lot of time and effort to go back over so many posts trying to find ones that are relevant, but doesn't all research do that?
In April of this year a forum member posted, in the Miscellaneous section, 'Starting point for reading material on this forum?'. Perhaps the advice given by other members on that occasion might be of assistance in your own quest. I wish you good hunting and every success with your Spanish garden venture.
Title: Kalogeriko pack-animal bridge
Post by: John J on May 29, 2015, 04:53:28 AM
One of the many ancient pack-animal bridges we came across on our travels in the mountains of northern Greece.
Title: Asphodeline lutea
Post by: John J on May 30, 2015, 04:58:52 AM
How's this for a tough plant capable of growing in the most demanding conditions? Asphodeline lutea.
Title: Neotinea tridentata
Post by: John J on May 31, 2015, 04:40:56 AM
Among the many orchids we found was this beautiful three-toothed orchid, Neotinea tridentata.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on May 31, 2015, 04:16:29 PM
I am enjoying your daily photo of flowers and places.
I wonder if, for future reference purposes, you shouldn't add a little note 'Epirus, May' ' Morocco'
Title: Paeonia peregrina
Post by: John J on June 01, 2015, 04:48:57 AM
On the trip to Epirus in May we were on the lookout for one particular plant but all we ever found was rosettes of foliage and evidence of flowering being over. We had almost given up hope when our guide, Chris Gardener, spotted this beauty. Paeonia peregrina.
Title: Recommended Mediterranean gardening books
Post by: royscot on June 01, 2015, 12:18:37 PM
Sorry John, been out of touch with the internet for a few days. Thanks for your input. You are right, there is no real shortcut to finding out about the most suitable plants and I shall trawl the site with interest. I have Olivier Filippi's Dry Gardening Handbook so that should keep me right!

Just keep posting the photos!

Roy
Title: Pomegranate flowers
Post by: Alice on June 01, 2015, 04:24:07 PM
This bee seems to appreciate the pomegranate flowers, which are abundant at the moment.
Title: Helleborus cyclophyllus
Post by: John J on June 02, 2015, 05:59:23 AM
On the recent MGS trip to Epirus (May 2015) we found Helleborus cyclophyllus almost everywhere we went.
Title: Mediterranean gardening books
Post by: Caroline on June 02, 2015, 08:34:26 AM
There are three other excellent books I would recommend if you haven't already got hold of them, Roy.  They are: "Gardens of the Sun" by Trevor Nottle, which is both a good read and thought-provoking: "Gardening the Mediterranean Way" by Heidi Gildemeister, and "The Mediterranean Gardener" by Hugo Latymer, which is older and has lots of plant lists and descriptions.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on June 02, 2015, 08:53:55 AM

Looking at the annual poppies in Alisdair's FB page today,
see www.facebook.com/MediterraneanGardenSociety
 I am again surprised that poppies have only four petals. With all those stamens and seeds I would have expected five. As far as I recall from a long time ago, those plants with many parts in their flowers were regarded as being earlier on the evolutionary scale and I have always, perhaps mistakenly,thought of poppies  as simple early flowers. Would someone please set me right on this query.
Incidentally, referring to Chris Grey Wilson's, Poppies, I see that the word Papaver may derive from the sound made when eating poppy seeds  or it might come from papa, referring to the liquid in the stem which was given to children to keep them quiet.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on June 03, 2015, 04:41:25 AM
Looking down into Albania from the village of Molivdoskepasto on the MGS Epirus trip in May.
Title: Re: Recommended Mediterranean gardening books
Post by: royscot on June 03, 2015, 09:26:24 AM
Thanks Caroline. Have recently purchased Heidi's book and already have the last one. Will look out for Trevor's.
Title: Plant of the Day - Acanthus mollis
Post by: John J on June 04, 2015, 04:54:53 AM
Following up on Roy's suggestion regarding posting photos and info about plants that are worthy of being recommended for use in water-wise gardens. Maybe it should be adopted. Reading about plants in books is an excellent resource but to have that info reinforced, or otherwise, by people who have experience of growing them in differing conditions can prove invaluable.
So, subject to the approval of the Forum Moderators, I'd like to attempt to produce at least one plant a day that arguably warrants a place in water-wise gardens. I may not be successful but in the words of the Beatles; "I can try with a little help from my friends". What do you think?
What better plant to start the ball rolling than the symbol of the MGS itself, Acanthus mollis.

A strongly architectural plant that requires absolutely minimal care. Its root system lies in the ground waiting for the winter rains before sending up those enormous leaves so familiar from ancient Corinthian columns. These are followed by the unmistakable flower spikes. It needs no supplementary water as it dies down in the summer, merely requiring a little tidying up as it becomes too messy.
Title: Re: Acanthus mollis
Post by: Hilary on June 04, 2015, 07:47:58 AM
It sounds like a good idea but on the other hand it sounds like a lot of work, especially if you are spending a lot of time already gardening, looking after grandchildren and swimming in the sea
.
There are many posts scattered all over the Forum dealing with plants suitable for water-wise gardens. Maybe you could track them all down first then refer to one daily

Since you started off with Acanthus mollis I am posting a couple of photos i took a week or so ago of some Acanthus plants  surrounding a Carob tree in a bed outside the Corinth Court House. I don't think they get watered at all
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Daisy on June 04, 2015, 08:31:36 AM
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/546/18258210558_514057a5bb_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/tPq6TL) (https://flic.kr/p/tPq6TL)  (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/360/18447814281_d5c0c9cb13_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/u7aStt) (https://flic.kr/p/u7aStt)   (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8854/18441834012_4c5ee65db5_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/u6DdKo) (https://flic.kr/p/u6DdKo)   (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8839/18259939159_a0c5491d62_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/tPyXKe) (https://flic.kr/p/tPyXKe)  (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

Just to let you all know how much I have been enjoying all of your posts and photos, even though I cannot reply much at present.
At the end of April I managed to break my leg and after some complications and a stay in hospital, I am back home with strict instructions to lay with my leg up most of the time.
I cannot manage the step into the bedroom on my crutches, so have to lie on the bed settee in front of the television and the front door.
I can read all of your posts on the television which is connected to another  computer, but cannot reply, apart from shouting at the screen, which I do a lot.
As my husband normally watches a lot more television than I do, it is only fair that he takes over this lap top at present. So if anyone replies to this post, it may be a while before I respond.
Luckily, I have a good view out of the front door to my pots and the village footpath, so I have taken a few photos from my bed, which you can see above.
Daisy :)

Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on June 04, 2015, 11:52:28 AM
Who gets time to swim in the sea!? This is where I'm hoping for assistance from Forum friends to help out with their photos and experiences, good and bad, of growing a variety of plants. Thanks for your latest contribution, Hilary.
Daisy, sorry to hear about your mishap, get well soon and we'll look forward to getting you back on the Forum in due course.
Title: Jasminum mesnyi
Post by: John J on June 05, 2015, 04:51:33 AM
Jasminum mesnyi, no scent but a bright splash of yellow to brighten dull winter days. Best displayed where it can cascade. Ours is well established and gets little or no supplementary water during the summer.
Title: Viburnum tinus
Post by: John J on June 06, 2015, 04:35:09 AM
Today we feature an old faithful standby that often gets overlooked, Viburnum tinus. A shrub that cheerfully produces its delicately scented flowers every winter/spring without fail, whilst uncomplainingly taking anything and everything the mediterranean climate throws at it. A real unsung hero of many of our gardens.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: MikeHardman on June 06, 2015, 06:41:17 AM
Daisy,
Rotten luck with your leg. I do hope you get mobile again before too long. Meanwhile, that's a stunning view by your front door!
I can sympathize partly from experience, as I am of reduced mobility myself, following major spine surgery (15 bits of titanium in my neck now).
All best, Mike
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on June 06, 2015, 08:04:18 AM
Commiserations Daisy I know just how frustrated you will be feeling having managed to break both my ankles in one go several years ago. I was in plaster from knees to toes for several weeks and had to "live" in a reclining chair for many more once the plaster was removed because my muscles had weakened and I had to learn to walk all over again. A wheelchair enabled me to get into the garden a bit and once the plaster was off I sometimes managed to persuade my husband to lift me to the ground in order to do a bit of weeding. Patience is certainly a virtue on these occasions - and following doctor's orders......good luck. :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on June 06, 2015, 09:26:35 AM
Very best wishes from us all, Daisy - the one bright spot is that it's good to be able to think of you having that lovely view of at least some of your splendid plants, while you get better.
Title: Eriocephalus africanus
Post by: John J on June 07, 2015, 04:37:49 AM
Eriocephalus africanus, a tough shrub indigenous to South Africa. Once established needs little or no supplementary summer watering. Foliage aromatic when bruised.
Title: Carthamus tinctorius
Post by: John J on June 08, 2015, 04:59:03 AM
The Safflower (Carthamus tinctorius) is an annual that has been grown for thousands of years. Garlands made from it were found in the tomb of Tutankhamun. Its deep taproot allows it to survive in the most arid conditions.
Title: Senna artemesioides
Post by: John J on June 09, 2015, 04:43:46 AM
Senna artemesioides, our bush gets no supplementary water in the summer and still produces a mass of highly fragrant flowers every spring.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Daisy on June 09, 2015, 07:29:41 AM
Thank-you so much for your commiserations, although I think that I have got off lightly compared to Umbrian. Two legs at once!!! and Mike. 15 bits of titanium in your neck!!! Wow.
Here are a few photos that my husband took for me. At least I can enjoy my garden vicariously.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8854/18419729206_84b2fbd24a_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/u4FVL3) (https://flic.kr/p/u4FVL3)   (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8855/18445132742_c44d43f2d5_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/u6W8m3) (https://flic.kr/p/u6W8m3)   (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8838/18445162802_2fa0799041_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/u6Whhj) (https://flic.kr/p/u6Whhj)  (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8887/18261773800_9da525c406_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/tPJn7Y) (https://flic.kr/p/tPJn7Y)  (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

Daisy :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: royscot on June 09, 2015, 08:36:38 AM
You have a lovely garden Daisy. I hope in a few years time to have something half as good!

Roy
Title: Retama raetam
Post by: John J on June 10, 2015, 05:26:32 AM
Retama raetam, is known as 'The Bride' in Cyprus due to its being smothered in fragrant white blossom when in full flower. They are often used in central reservations on the highway. Ours gets no supplementary water at all in summer. The one in the photo was growing on a dry hillside in Morocco.
Title: Phlomis russeliana
Post by: John J on June 11, 2015, 04:46:04 AM
For today's photo I'm indebted to Joanna Savage. Thanks, Joanna.
Phlomis russeliana (Turkish Sage), grows to a height of 90 cms and is long flowering.
Title: Ferula communis
Post by: John J on June 12, 2015, 04:23:44 AM
Another photo supplied by Joanna. This time of Ferula communis a common sight alongside road verges in the Mediterranean. This one with olive and figs in the background.
Thanks again, Joanna.
Title: Centaurea ragusina
Post by: John J on June 13, 2015, 05:09:39 AM
A third photo from Joanna and I'm especially indebted to her for this one, on two counts. One, because the plant, Centaurea ragusina is a new one to me, and two, because it appears to fall into the category of rare and endangered plants that I wrote an article about for the Jan 2015 MGS magazine (79).  The very survival of some of these rare plants that are so endangered in the wild is being made possible because dedicated gardeners are growing and protecting them 'in captivity' as it were.
This plant it seems is a Croatian endemic that is included in that country's Red Data Book of Endangered Plants.
So, a double thank you, Joanna, for sharing this plant.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on June 13, 2015, 08:13:26 AM
Great to see it looking so fine in Joanna's garden, too!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 13, 2015, 10:02:55 AM
Centaurea ragusina looks good. A candidate for Chantal's seed bank, if she doesn't already hold seed for it, especially as it is an endangered species. I would certainly try to make some room for it.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on June 13, 2015, 11:58:04 AM
Centaurea ragusina. My favourite grey leaved plant. This is my second try, an earlier  plant did not survive our frosty winter, so when I saw this second plant on a stall at Lucca Murabilia in Sep.2014, I pounced on it. It was kept in a pot away from heavy frosts until late March. This morning it has at least twenty flowers so with luck I'll be sending a good batch of seed to Chantal in the autumn.
I will try to establish seedlings here too, as I may well lose the parent plant in the winter. I don't know what the expected lower temp. limit  is, although in conversation with a nurseryman at Murabilia he suggested it could tolerate up to minus eight.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on June 13, 2015, 02:31:01 PM
Joanna, I can't help with the frost tolerance of your plant but while I was looking for info about it I came across the following website. It has some interesting info including the fact that cuttings come relatively easily, so maybe that's another method you could try.
www.gimcw.org/plants/Centaurea.ragusina.cfm.
Title: Medicago arborea and Euphorbia dendroides
Post by: John J on June 14, 2015, 07:30:02 AM
Two for the price of one today, Medicago arborea and Euphorbia dendroides. Granted neither of them look at their best right now but that's because they are in the process of shutting down for the summer. In more northern climes some plants have a tendency to 'hibernate' as it were, but here in the Med some have evolved to be summer dormant, to 'aestivate' if you will.
The euphorbia spends the summer months looking like nothing more than a bunch of dead sticks, but then when its body clock decides the time is right, it doesn't even always wait for the first rains, it bursts into leaf and its shining lime-green brightens up the dull winter days.
The tree medick behaves somewhat similarly, although not quite as drastic in simulating death. It is even more colourful in winter becoming a mass of bright yellow followed by ornamental rams-horn seed pods. It is also very useful in the fact that it is capable of fixing nitrogen in the soil due to a symbiotic relationship with the bacterium Sinorhizobium meliloti.
Title: Teucrium flavum
Post by: John J on June 15, 2015, 04:37:06 AM
Teucrium flavum (Yellow Germander) is summer flowering and prefers well-drained, relatively infertile soil.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on June 15, 2015, 09:01:50 PM
Daisy ,
Get well soon
I am thoroughly enjoying the photos of your garden this spring/ summer.
There appears to be  several steps which you are going to have to deal with once you are up and about, not too many I hope.
I don't remember if you have ever posted a plan of your garden.
The roses look wonderful, no doubt influenced by the cardboard boxes and donkey manure.
Congratulations to your husband for taking the photos for you
Title: Convolvulus cneorum
Post by: John J on June 16, 2015, 04:50:57 AM
Convolvulus cneorum is a Mediterranean native that likes full sun but is also cold hardy. It prefers alkaline soil with good drainage. Unlike many of its relatives it is not a vine but forms low mounds.
(Ignore the name under the photo, that's just a label of the folder it was in!)
Title: Pallenis maritima
Post by: John J on June 17, 2015, 04:39:21 AM
Pallenis maritima (syn Asteriscus maritimus) is an excellent ground cover plant for dry gardens. It will flower continuously during the summer and spreads outwards to form a dense mat.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Daisy on June 17, 2015, 07:54:09 AM
Thank-you Hilary. When I am allowed to tackle the steps, my doctor tells me that I have to climb and descend them like a toddler, on my bottom ::)
Because of the complications though, that is still some time in the future, as I still have to keep my leg up for most of the time.

Convolvulus cneorum is one of my favourite small shrubs. Although I have found that it is very short lived in my garden here. I am forever taking cuttings as it only lasts 2 to 3 years. When I grew it in England, it went on for years and years. Very strange.
Daisy :)
Title: Duranta erecta (including 'Sweet Memories')
Post by: John J on June 18, 2015, 04:41:02 AM
Duranta erecta (syn D repens)is native to Central America but once established has done well in our garden with very little water in the summer. The darker flowered plant is a variety known as 'Sweet Memories'.
A word of warning the leaves and berries are poisonous.
Title: Wigandia species
Post by: John J on June 19, 2015, 05:04:53 AM
This plant was seen in the garden of the Riad Dar al Hossoun in Taroudant, Morocco last year and tentatively identified as a variety of Wigandia.
Title: Convolvulus sabatius
Post by: Alice on June 19, 2015, 05:47:54 PM
Convolvulus sabatius is well worth considering as ground cover.
Title: Lagunaria patersonii
Post by: John J on June 20, 2015, 05:03:43 AM
Thanks for that, Alice.
Below is a flower of the Lagunaria patersonii tree growing outside my 'study' window, taken a few minutes ago. This tough Australian native is beautiful when in flower and handsome when not. It has proven to be extremely drought tolerant in our garden and has grown to be as tall as the house (2 stories). Care must be taken in choosing a location however as its seed pods are full of very irritating fine hairs, leading it to have been given the name of Cow Itch Tree among others.
Title: Convolvulus sabatius
Post by: Daisy on June 20, 2015, 07:42:39 AM
I must echo Alice, Convolvulus sabatius makes brilliant ground cover and it is so pretty.
Here it is at the far side of the pond.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/441/18261618670_05bf728b71_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/tPHz1j) (https://flic.kr/p/tPHz1j)  (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

...and around a box pyramid.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/318/18421955946_6cfab26d4d_c.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/u4TkG7) (https://flic.kr/p/u4TkG7)   (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/)

I must say though, it cannot escape from that small bed. I don't think I would plant it anywhere it could escape from.
Daisy :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alice on June 20, 2015, 08:54:07 AM
Lagunaria patersonii sounds great, John. "Extremely drought tolerant" is music to my ears!
Title: Cneorum tricoccon
Post by: Alice on June 20, 2015, 09:03:13 AM
Cneorum tricoccon is a tough little evergreen shrub with small yellow flowers and interesting-looking red berries.
Native of the western Mediterranean.
Title: Asphodeline lutea
Post by: John J on June 21, 2015, 04:36:59 AM
Asphodeline lutea native to southeastern Europe, northern Africa and Turkey. Not fussy about soil type as long as it is well drained. A colourful addition to any garden. This one photographed on the MGS trip to Epirus.
Title: Cestrum nocturnum
Post by: David Dickinson on June 21, 2015, 11:23:55 PM
I thought I would send a picture of a "plant for today" or, rather, a "plant for tonight". Just taken this shot (flash and a cheap camera so don't expect too much) of Cestrum nocturnum. The perfume is amazing at the moment with cool but still nights after fairly hot daytime temperatures.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on June 22, 2015, 04:27:11 AM
Thanks for that, David. It must be one of the favourite contenders for the plant with the strongest perfume. Some people find it too powerful, one of our neighbours claims that the smell of it brings on her migraine attacks. Here in Cyprus they call it 'Pakistanos' and I've never been able to find out why as it originates from the Caribbean area.
Title: Centaurea triumfettii
Post by: John J on June 23, 2015, 04:43:53 AM
A beautiful cornflower, Centaurea triumfettii, seen on the MGS trip to Northern Greece in May.
Title: Orchis purpurea
Post by: John J on June 30, 2015, 05:19:18 PM
Been absent for a while on MGS business. Thought you might like this Lady Orchid, Orchis purpurea, seen on the Epirus trip in May.
Title: Saponaria cantabrica
Post by: John J on July 01, 2015, 05:27:31 AM
Also from the Epirus trip, this pink beauty, believed to be Saponaria cantabrica.
Title: Art in a Moroccan garden
Post by: John J on July 02, 2015, 09:59:14 AM
Perhaps these should be in 'Art in the Garden'. Seen in a private garden in Morocco last year.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on July 02, 2015, 01:02:14 PM
Was the artist named anywhere.?
The style looks very familiar
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on July 02, 2015, 03:27:25 PM
I'm afraid not, Hilary.
Title: Astragalus lusitanicus
Post by: John J on July 03, 2015, 05:01:19 AM
Astragalus lusitanicus growing on a hillside in Morocco. Goats avoid it due to its toxic properties.
Title: Euphorbia dendroides
Post by: John J on July 04, 2015, 08:13:29 AM
Not dead, merely resting. Euphorbia dendroides in its summer dormant state.
Title: Ramonda serbica
Post by: John J on July 06, 2015, 10:07:48 AM
To echo today's MGS Facebook page cover photo, that same beautiful little Ramonda serbica taken from a slightly different angle.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on July 06, 2015, 10:42:06 AM
Fascinating to see that it's still there, John: I took the Facebook photo (https://www.facebook.com/mediterraneangardensociety/photos/a.625834137452587.1073741827.624911254211542/878136185555713/?type=1&theater) back in 2008.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on July 06, 2015, 02:08:41 PM
I hadn't realised that, Alisdair, I was wondering which of the group had sent it to you! It's obviously the same plant as the rock in the background is an exact match. Amazing coincidence.
Title: Senna corymbosa
Post by: John J on July 08, 2015, 07:11:49 AM
Senna corymbosa nowhere near as drought tolerant as its relative, Senna artemesioides, but ours does reasonably well in the shade of some mature trees and given a good drink at regular intervals.
Title: Hibiscus tiliaceus
Post by: John J on July 09, 2015, 08:57:22 AM
Flowers just beginning to open on one of our Hibiscus tiliaceus this morning. These trees are native to tropical areas and are described as thriving in 'coastal, swampy soils' and growing on 'beaches, by rivers and in mangrove swamps'. Our 2 are doing quite nicely in conditions that are probably as far away from that ideal as it is possible to get. They are shaded to a certain extent by more mature trees but get very little supplementary water in the summer.
Title: Hibiscus syriacus
Post by: John J on July 11, 2015, 07:17:23 AM
 Hibiscus syriacus flower taken this morning on my early morning bimble around the garden. These shrubs seem to do well with us in dappled shade and given a drink at least once a week.
Title: Waterlilies
Post by: John J on July 13, 2015, 01:11:38 PM
Not exactly drought tolerant but everyone's allowed one weakness, right?
Title: Salvia patens 'Oceana Blue'
Post by: John J on July 15, 2015, 12:34:25 PM
Our Salvia 'Indigo Spires' appears to be standing up to the summer heat reasonably well so far.
Title: Tabernaemontana divaricata
Post by: John J on July 16, 2015, 05:53:50 AM
Our Tabernaemontana divaricata grows under a large avocado tree where it benefits from the shade provided by the tree and the irrigation provided for the tree.
Title: Buddleja davidii
Post by: John J on July 17, 2015, 04:53:39 AM
When we bought this Buddleja davidii it was labelled as "Royal Red", but........???
Title: Dicliptera suberecta
Post by: David Dickinson on July 17, 2015, 11:52:45 AM
Another plant for today. Just like handwriting, choice of tie etc., I am sure that you can tell the personality of a person from the plants they choose. Well, this is one of my favourites. I generally prefer small flowers. There are exceptions, of course my Passiflora "Lady Margaret" being among them. I decided to try Dicliptera suberectahaving failed miserably three times with Zauschneria californica. Okay, they are not identical but I think I prefer Dicliptera anyway. It grows quickly, likes being in a pot, one is flowering quite happily in shade and another in full morning sun and it propagates easily from cuttings standing in water. It needs a little help with water over the summer (maybe not so when not in the ground?) but so far (2nd year) no pests. None of the dreaded spider mites and mealy bugs which attack a lot of my other plants. The one in the pic is also providing shade for a Clematis which is sending out shoots from another pot underneath it. Double the value  :)
Title: Rudbeckia gloriosa
Post by: John J on July 18, 2015, 05:15:29 AM
Rudbeckia gloriosa grown from seed by my wife.
Title: Dicliptera suberecta
Post by: John J on July 18, 2015, 07:43:55 AM
Thanks for posting that photo, David, as it brought to mind another subject that has been raised recently. In the latest copy of the MGS Journal the President, Alisdair Aird, suggested trying to instigate a 'Cuttings Exchange' scheme amongst MGS members. The photo below is of one of our Dicliptera suberecta that we obtained as a cutting from the Athens garden of Fleur Pavlidis, one of the Moderators of this forum.
I'm sure that many of us have acquired any number of our own plants in this way, by informal exchange of cuttings. Imagine the possibilities if such a method could be formalised.
Title: Passiflora coccinea x incarnata 'Lady Margaret'
Post by: David Dickinson on July 18, 2015, 10:29:32 AM
Hi John (and everybody else of course)

Yes, I saw Alasdair's opening article in the latest MGS journal and I would be very interested. In my own small way I try to contribute to Chantal's seed exchange but having only a small balcony I am limited to the number of seeds I can send both with regard to the actual number of seeds and the selection. Likewise, it would be me who would be the one to get the most benefit from a cuttings exchange! But I do know (as I said in earlier postings on this subject) that cuttings sent from me to my sisters in the UK nearly always survive the journey which is encouraging.

A cutting exchange need not be so organised as Chantal's seed bank as the cuttings would go directly from the provider to the recipient I would imagine. What we would need to be careful of is not breaching plant breeder's rights. And, if sent outside one's own country, export/import restrictions. I suppose each participant would decide what they wanted to do about recovering postage costs. I, for one, wouldn't be too worried about that but I could imagine somebody with large amounts of cuttings to supply would need to recover the costs in some way.

If the idea gets off the ground then maybe a first step might be to identify ourselves as "cutting exchange participant" or something of the kind on our profiles? That might even be redundant if all people have to do is send in a posting asking "can anybody supply cuttings of "X" to me in"Y"country"

Sending this reply gives me an excuse to post a picture of Passiflora "Lady Margaret" as "plant of the day. :)

Title: Pandorea jasminoides 'Red Eyes'
Post by: John J on July 19, 2015, 05:05:33 AM
The MGS Facebook page recently featured Pandorea jasminoides as its cover photo. Those who know me will be aware that I am not only interested in plants but also in the derivation of their names and how they came by them. So, when we acquired our own Pandorea many years ago I wondered why it came to be named after Pandora, she of the infamous box of evils. This particular vine was one of many that had originally been placed in the genus Bignonia, and like the majority of the others was eventually removed thereby needing a new name. Apparently the type-species was associated with an insect plague that occurred on Norfolk Island and the name Pandorea was conjured up from that, showing perhaps that taxonomists of the day had imagination. However, they seem to have had an imagination failure when it came to renaming yet another Bignonia afterwards as the best they could think of was to make an anagram of Pandorea and so Podranea came into existence.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on July 19, 2015, 09:09:48 AM
As you can see, I've split this topic off as it definitely deserves its own thread - and thanks very much, John, for starting it and - with your various helpers - keeping it going so interestingly!
What would help very much would be if when you do post new "Plants of the Day", you always changed the Subject from "Re: Plant of the Day" to the name of the plant...
Title: Tecoma 'Orange Jubilee'
Post by: John J on July 20, 2015, 05:08:11 AM
Another genus that started off as Bignonia is that of Tecoma. The photo shows what I have thought of as Tecoma stans 'Orange Jubilee' but am led to believe is now Tecoma alata. My ageing brain finds it difficult to cope with all these changes!!!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Tecoma 'Orange Jubilee'
Post by: Alisdair on July 20, 2015, 09:53:46 AM
Just to muddy the waters even further, John, the taxonomists now call your lovely plant Tecoma fulva subsp. guarume  :'(
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on July 20, 2015, 02:19:53 PM
I don't think the waters could get much muddier, Alisdair! I've seen this plant described on assorted websites as; Tecoma alata (formerly known as Tecoma guarume); Tecoma alata 'Orange Jubilee'; as a hybrid between Tecoma stans and Tecoma alata, and probably every other combination you can dream up plus a few more! I got to the point where I needed to lie down in a dark room with an aspirin, or maybe a double whisky would have been better!!
Title: Clerodendrum chinense
Post by: John J on July 21, 2015, 04:37:29 AM
Today's plant is also one that we have grown from cuttings. Mike Hardman, an MGS member in Cyprus provided us with 3 rooted cuttings and they have all thrived. One word of warning, however, it will sucker profusely and take over an area if not kept in check, but the scent of the flowers is well worth the trouble.
Title: Pancratium maritimum
Post by: John J on July 22, 2015, 04:44:19 AM
Grown from seed collected from a beach in Crete. I believe it was the beach that was used as a location in the movie Zorba to film the dance scene with Anthony Quinn and Alan Bates.
Title: Pavonia hastata
Post by: David Dickinson on July 22, 2015, 10:03:35 AM
Pavonia Hastata. These pictures were taken last year but today I have 3 buds just about to open. Much earlier than last year's flowers. For the last month I have had repeated cleistogamy type buds which I read is very common for this species. Such flower buds don't open but do produce seed. I'm looking forward to seeing 3 of these delicate little flowers tomorrow morning. Wish me luck.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on July 22, 2015, 03:40:49 PM
Good luck, David! But maybe when you get cooler weather you'll have more of a flush of flowers?
Title: Senecio confusus
Post by: David Dickinson on July 28, 2015, 12:36:06 PM
I wasn't so lucky, the Pavonia flowers didn't open as I had hoped. But they will in autumn if last year is anything to go by. In the meantime another photo for "Plant of the Day", Senecio confusus and another that gives me flowers only in autumn. I can't understand why.  The plant from which I took a cutting is about 500 meters away in a neighbouring street and it has been smothered in flowers for weeks! The parent plant is in the ground and mine is in a pot so maybe there is a difference there. I noticed it was a flower which was present in one of the May-wreaths that John J posted, so an even earlier flower there.

Anyway, here is a photo of my plant in autumn.
Title: Passiflora caerulea 'Constance Elliott'
Post by: David Dickinson on July 30, 2015, 12:32:55 PM
Just about to finish flowering for me now, only one bud left to open. But it will give me a few more flowers in the autumn. Passiflora "Constance Elliot"
Title: Pancratium maritimum
Post by: Alice on July 30, 2015, 06:28:26 PM
Your Pancratium looks lovely, John.
Did you grow it in pots or in the ground and in what soil? And how long before it flowered?
Title: Salvia guaranitica
Post by: David Dickinson on August 02, 2015, 01:31:02 PM
A photo from this time last year. Salvia guaranitica ("Black and Blue"?). It is (was) great for my balcony as the tall stems grow out through the railings and the flowers are visible as you stand looking out from the balcony. This year, like some of my other Salvias, it is not happy. After the usual spurt of growth it died back to pot level. It is resprouting but I doubt I'll see flowers this year  :(
Title: Grindelia robusta and Plumbago auriculata
Post by: David Dickinson on August 04, 2015, 11:05:50 AM
A plant which hasn't failed me for 5 years with a plant which hasn't failed me for 12 years in the background. Grindelia robusta and Plumbago auriculata respectively. With regard to the Plumbago, I haven't even changed the soil or the pot for 12 years and it still keeps on flowering every summer, all summer.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on August 06, 2015, 04:24:02 PM
Sorry to have taken a while to reply, Alice, but I have been out of Internet contact for the last 2 weeks. The Pancratium seeds were germinated in a pot and transplanted into the ground when they grew large enough. The soil is very sandy where they are by the side of a path and free draining. They took a couple of years to grow to flowering size.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alice on August 07, 2015, 11:40:12 AM
Thank you, John.
I have also planted some from seed and 2-3 bought from a local nursery. I await their flowers.
Title: Re: Grindelia robusta and Plumbago auriculata
Post by: Alice on August 07, 2015, 11:50:28 AM
A plant which hasn't failed me for 5 years with a plant which hasn't failed me for 12 years in the background. Grindelia robusta and Plumbago auriculata respectively. With regard to the Plumbago, I haven't even changed the soil or the pot for 12 years and it still keeps on flowering every summer, all summer.
Your Plumbago auriculata is a lovely colour, David.
I would say a pot is the best place for it as it can be quite invasive, producing a mass of underground runners. It took over one of our beds completely and months after removing it we are still digging up new shoots.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on August 09, 2015, 09:27:54 AM
I second Alice's comment. Our plumbago plants would take over if allowed to do so. This one is by the side of our front gate and needs to be regularly trimmed back to keep it in check.
Title: Eremophila
Post by: John J on August 10, 2015, 12:50:46 PM
Two different Eremophila that get absolutely no supplementary water during the summer months. They're both loving the current heatwave.
Title: Ipomoea 'Scarlet O'Hara' and Ipomoea quamoclit
Post by: John J on August 12, 2015, 07:43:26 AM
It's heartening to stroll out into the garden in the early morning and find that some plants are prepared to defy the desiccating heat at this time of the year. Like these two, Ipomoea 'Scarlet O'Hara' and I. quamoclit.
Title: Hoya Carnosa
Post by: David Dickinson on August 13, 2015, 12:00:22 PM
For "plant of the day" I thought I'd post Hoya Carnosa. My plant has just finished flowering but new buds are beginning already where the last ones fell off. In shade they do really well and are not too worried about the heatwave we are going through in Rome at the moment (broken by 2 days of thunderstorms a couple of days back).
Title: Re: Pancratium maritimum
Post by: John J on August 14, 2015, 01:43:15 PM
The latest Pancratium flowers taken early this morning.
Title: Re: Hoya carnosa
Post by: Alisdair on August 14, 2015, 02:23:40 PM
What a perfect globe of flower on your Hoya, David! I've always thought the summer air would be too dry for us to try one in Greece, but for yours looking like that in Rome maybe I should yield to temptation....
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on August 14, 2015, 03:16:45 PM
Our Hoya carnosa in June this year.
It produced more flowers this year at the same time than it has in the past  30 ?years.
I don't know what I did differently this year, except leave it to its own devices for about three weeks in March/ April.
It gets a weekly hose down and a spoonfull of fertiliser in the spring and autumn.
The dried mint leaves are supposed to keep aphids away  and there certainly haven't been any this year
Title: Re: Pancratium maritimum
Post by: Janet Ibbotson on August 15, 2015, 07:07:49 AM
The latest Pancratium flowers taken early this morning.

I've grown some Pancratium from seed.  They are currently in a pot of sand mixed with a little compost.  I was going to plant them out this autumn in my garden on a steep rocky area facing the sea but 150 metres up.  Does anyone have experience of growing them in a garden rather than the wild.  Are they like to grow in my "normal" Greek soil (i.e. builders rubble, rocks, pebbles, bit of compost) there or do I need to make a special sand mix for them?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on August 15, 2015, 09:24:26 AM
Janet, ours are grown from seed and were later planted out into the garden. You have described the soil that they are in pretty accurately. The most important thing appears to be that it be free-draining and is given a little water from time to time. The individual flowers on ours only last for one day but each spike produces multiple buds that open in sequence.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alice on August 16, 2015, 01:24:54 AM
Janet, I have been trying to grow Pancratium maritimum in the garden. I have planted them on a mound (diameter 1m, height 0.5m) made from silt washed down from the road by heavy rain, mixed with a little soil. The silt is mainly marble dust. The plants are surviving but growing rather slowly. I also planted some seeds in a raised bed which acts as a nursery and they have germinated and survived. The soil there is light but not a special mix.
Title: Plant of the Day - Carissa macrocarpa
Post by: John J on August 25, 2015, 10:48:46 AM
Been neglecting these lately. This is a tough South African shrub, Carissa macrocarpa. Scented flowers, needs little or no supplementary water and its vicious thorns make it ideal for use as a security fence.
Title: Plant of the Day - Pennisetum 'Mt Fuji'
Post by: John J on September 04, 2015, 09:06:46 AM
The current gardening fashion of using grasses lends itself well to Mediterranean gardens. This is Pennisetum 'Mt Fuji' in the early morning sun.
Extra Smartie points to anyone who can identify the tree in the background. ;D
Title: Plant of the Day - Strelitzia regina
Post by: John J on September 05, 2015, 11:52:39 AM
Strelitzia reginae exotic and architectural while requiring minimal attention.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Caroline on September 06, 2015, 08:37:08 AM
Can we have a clue as to the mystery plant at the back of your Pennisetum, please John?  Looks like a coprosma to me, but I suspect that's just my antipodean prejudice.  ;)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 06, 2015, 04:56:13 PM
Oh dear! I hadn't really expected anyone to take me up on the challenge and 'ave a go', do you see! :-[ So I guess now I'll have to put my thinking cap on and come up with something. Unfortunately you are on the wrong continent, Caroline.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alice on September 07, 2015, 10:27:49 AM
Mystery plant in the background: Arbutus unedo??
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 07, 2015, 04:53:03 PM
Funny you should pick on that particular plant, Alice, as behind the tree in question there is an Arbutus andrachne, they are far more prevalent on the island than A unedo. Obviously it can't be seen on the photo so that doesn't help you much! :D I'm surprised that you haven't picked up on the clue, I've given the name, well almost. ;)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on September 07, 2015, 05:59:00 PM
Avocado?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 08, 2015, 04:47:35 AM
Well spotted, Joanna. :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Caroline on September 09, 2015, 09:15:50 AM
Sorry to have caused you extra bother, John - if you will float these teasers past us yokels at the bottom of the world.... ;)
Title: Plant of the Day - Pavonia spinifex
Post by: David Dickinson on September 09, 2015, 12:09:56 PM
I wrote some time back asking for help in growing single flowered Kerria japonica in mediterranean climates. The replies were not very encouraging and sad experience has proven them right. However, I think I have found my substitute in Pavonia spinifex. Not identical of course but similar colour flowers and leaves similar in size and shape. It is my plant's first year but it is doing well and has already produced seed.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on September 10, 2015, 04:58:48 AM
Your Pavonia spinifex is doing well David, but has given  me a query. Do you know anything about the origin of the specific name 'spinifex'? It is hard to imagine any greater difference than that between your plant and the arid-growing grass Spinifex.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 10, 2015, 07:21:32 AM
Pardon me for butting in on this, David and Joanna, but as you no doubt know spinifex means spiky and the seed pods of Pavonia spinifex are very spiky and can be quite dangerously irritating if they get under the skin.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 10, 2015, 07:28:50 AM
Caroline, I sincerely hope I haven't said or done anything to infer that I think people from your part of the globe are yokels! :o
I have met some extremely pleasant people from down there over the years and spent 3 good ones attached to ANZUK Forces in Singapore, working alongside Australians and New Zealanders.  :D
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Ceratostigma
Post by: John J on September 10, 2015, 07:33:22 AM
Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, still very small but establishing well under our limited watering regime.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Caroline on September 10, 2015, 08:01:31 AM
Absolutely not, John - I was pointing the finger back at myself as I 'm usually quite good at word association.
Title: Another Plant of the Day - Campsis radicans
Post by: Alisdair on September 10, 2015, 09:36:35 AM
Hilary has just put up another plant of the day, adding pictures of Campsis radicans to the thread on this climber which you can find by clicking here (http://www.mgsforum.org/smf/index.php?topic=93.msg3625). Thanks, Hilary!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on September 11, 2015, 10:31:09 AM
Spinifex. Oh Dear. Thanks for putting me right on the meaning John. Of course it is obvious, once you know. My young days were spent near spinifex country and it had never occurred to me to wonder about the meaning. It simply meant having to wearb shoes outside the back gate as there were too many burrs and spines for even the most hardened feet.
Title: Plant of the Day - Maurandya barclayana
Post by: David Dickinson on September 24, 2015, 12:00:13 PM
Plant of the day seems to have gone off the boil a little so I thought I would be excused by sending in an old picture of a plant which is currently flowering for me (no time to take a new one as work is calling). Maurandya barclayana is a lovely delicate-looking climber which takes all the sun mother nature can blast at it providing it has a little water once a week. And that is in a pot. Good chance to plug Chantal's seed exchange again which was the source of the seed.
Title: Plant of the Day - Sternbergia lutea
Post by: David Dickinson on September 27, 2015, 10:35:57 AM
Sternbergia lutea is just beginning to show on my balcony. The first flower on those I have in a pot opened this morning. I have been watching  leaves grow on what was evidently a stray bulb in among my succulents for at least a couple of years and waiting to see what flower eventually came up. Sternbergia lutea showed this morning. I don't know if it self-seeded or if a little bulblet got detached and fell in among the Crassula it is growing through. Very happy to have it whichever is the case :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Blue potato bush
Post by: John J on September 28, 2015, 08:24:38 AM
Afraid I have neglected this thread a bit of late as with the daytime temperatures here still over 30 and no sign of rain on the horizon finding plants in flower is no easy matter. However, the following plant does flower for most of the summer even with limited water, although not so profusely as during the cooler months and with smaller individual flowers. I've always known it as Solanum rantonnetii but it seems I now have to learn to call it Lycianthes rantonnetii.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on September 28, 2015, 09:08:36 AM
I am just about to start the task of putting new labels on all my plants so your info about the name change came just in time. Thanks :)

PS mine, in a pot, didn't start flowering again until about a week ago. I get some flowers early summer and then very little until September.
Title: Plant of the Day Sphaeralcea fendleri
Post by: David Dickinson on September 28, 2015, 11:53:08 AM
Just starting to come back into flower after a summer break (and a near fatal attack of red spider mite!)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Firespike
Post by: John J on September 29, 2015, 04:38:08 AM
Our Odontonema strictum is beginning to flower again. With us it seems to appreciate some shade from the hottest sun and a decent drink twice a week in the dry season.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day -Metrosideros carminea
Post by: Caroline on September 30, 2015, 05:34:19 AM
In the wild Metrosideros carminea, or Akakura, is a tough coastal climber.  The photo however shows the shrub form, propagated from mature growth, flowering in my garden now.  And yes, it is that luminescent shade of pinky-red!
Title: Plant of the Day Clematis Hagley Hybrid
Post by: David Dickinson on September 30, 2015, 09:25:24 AM
Just starting to send out new growth and a few flowers after the summer heat. I don't get as many flowers on it in the autumn but the few I do are always welcome.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Chrysanthemoides incana
Post by: John J on October 01, 2015, 04:41:46 AM
Very good as a ground cover, surviving with little or no water, it really comes into its own covering slopes or cascading down walls such as this 2 metre retaining one in our daughter's garden.
Title: Plant of the Day Ruellia
Post by: David Dickinson on October 01, 2015, 10:17:17 AM
A new plant for me, Ruellia graecizans, sent out its first flower yesterday. I am hoping it is as easy to propagate from cuttings as is Ruellia brittoniana because I have read that R graecizans is quite tender and so I will need to grow it indoors for the winter. It has lots of buds so I should be able to enjoy the red flowers for a few weeks.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on October 01, 2015, 10:19:20 AM
Forgot to say that the second picture in my last posting is, of course, Ruellia brittoniana and that it too is currently in flower.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day-Geranium incanum
Post by: Caroline on October 02, 2015, 06:36:49 AM
In flower now - a chance seedling that travelled accidentally in a pot plant from my old garden. Geranium incanum seems to be indestructable
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on October 02, 2015, 09:08:25 AM
Hi Caroline

The Geranium looks lovely. I much prefer the leaves to the more typical Geranium shape. I wish I had seen your photo a few days back. A batch of seeds have just arrived from Chiltern's Seeds and they supply this Geranium too. I am tempted to place a second order but will check Chantal's MGS
seed exchange first. Thanks
Title: Re: Plant of the Day -Paeonia cambessedesii
Post by: Fermi on October 02, 2015, 01:43:12 PM
Paeonia cambessedesii flowering in our rock garden; originally grown from seed in 1998,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Zephyranthes candida
Post by: JTh on October 02, 2015, 10:15:12 PM
Coming back to Greece this week, it was nice to see that there are still some flowers, Zephyranthes candida are not the biggest flowers around, but they cheer me up, kindly returning every autumn without any fuss.

(https://farm1.staticflickr.com/743/21880706031_01f85ef1e2_n.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/zkwkAg)
PA010383 Zephyranthes candida.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/zkwkAg) by Jorun Tharaldsen (https://www.flickr.com/photos/46063510@N03/), on Flickr

On my neighbours' lawn, their small hotel  is closed  down for the winter and there is nobody there, I always enjoy looking at what's popping up in their lawn now that nobody is mowing it, and every year I see these beautiful dark pink Zephyranthes (not quite sure which species), the flowers are quite large on very short stems. The owners have no idea how they ended up there.

(https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5717/21682274848_637e3c9916_n.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/z2ZjUY)
P9300343 Zephyranthes.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/z2ZjUY) by Jorun Tharaldsen (https://www.flickr.com/photos/46063510@N03/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Commelina erecta
Post by: John J on October 03, 2015, 12:16:36 PM
Commelina erecta, has been flowering for us for a few weeks now. It's actually a much more stunning blue than depicted on the photo but taking it in full sun has rather washed it out.
Title: Re: Commelina erecta
Post by: David Dickinson on October 03, 2015, 10:16:40 PM
Hi

Once of those coincidences that you should Commelina erecta as your "plant of the day". I took a cutting a few weeks back and was about to send in a request for help identifying my "Tradescantia". I now know that Commelina exists and that they have 2 large and one small petal whereas Tradescantia have 3 equal sized petals - or so the internet tells us. This is the problem with being a novice - you never know if there is a similar plant (even superficially similar) you should be trying out your instinctive hunch against. And this is where the forum comes into its own. Couldn't live without it:)

Thanks for the pics John and thanks too for bravely taking up Alasdair's challenge in follow up to Daisy's (I think it was Daisy's) original posting which got the thread going.

Here is my cutting which in the space of 3-4 weeks has not only rooted, grown a couple of inches and flowered but has also produced a little seed as well.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - White velvet
Post by: John J on October 04, 2015, 05:53:43 AM
Not exactly a coincidence, David, but your post gave me an idea for this next 'plant of the day', thanks for the kind words by the way.
Tradescantia sillamontana is described as 'almost xerophytic'. The white hairs that cover it protect it from excessive sunlight and reduce water loss through evaporation. Overwatering can be detrimental to the appearance of the plant.
Title: Plant of the Day - Sedum
Post by: David Dickinson on October 04, 2015, 02:33:03 PM
What garbled nonsense the first sentence of my last posting was! I shall try to be more attentive today. Sedum telephium "Matrona" is one of the few Sedums that does well for me in pots. Sedum spectabile, for example, struggles along but never really gives a good show.
Title: Re: Plant of the Evening - Pelargonium triste
Post by: Fermi on October 06, 2015, 12:09:35 PM
Not much to look at during the day, this plant calls attention to itself at dusk and its sweet scent becomes quite pervasive.
It is one of the tuberous-rooted pelargoniums from South Africa,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Jamus on October 06, 2015, 12:21:01 PM

This is really beautiful Fermi. What does it smell like?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fermi on October 07, 2015, 12:33:15 PM
Hi Jamus,
it has a rich, sweet scent - a bit like a gardenia
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crithmum maritimum
Post by: John J on October 10, 2015, 09:43:28 AM
Grows well in our garden with some water during the summer. Is a popular host plant for the Swallowtail butterfly caterpillars that decimate it every year but it recovers each time.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Bougainvillea
Post by: John J on October 11, 2015, 02:29:47 PM
This particular specimen is a mass of colour for most of the summer, and with no supplementary water.
Title: Plant of the Day- Bulbine frutescens
Post by: David Dickinson on October 12, 2015, 11:43:49 PM
Bulbine frutescens has been in flower on and off over the summer but is now making a new show for autumn.
Title: Plant of the Day - seed heads of an interesting Ipomoea
Post by: David Dickinson on October 13, 2015, 10:32:20 AM
Today is a miserable day here in Rome so I thought the seed heads of an Ipomea might be suitable for an autumn posting. The Ipomea flower is bright pink but I have no idea which it is. I grow it from seed each year so it is either a species or a fertile hybrid. The rock is from the "Solfatara" just outside Naples. It is an old volcanic crater which, although it doesn't erupt any longer, still has boiling mud pools and emits sulphurous steam jets. Hence the name.

http://www.vulcanosolfatara.it/en/

Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Symphyotrichum (syn. Aster) novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard'
Post by: JTh on October 14, 2015, 10:25:45 PM
This is one of my favourites in the autumn here in Greece. I planted one a few years ago, and I have now three nice clumps which are quite a sight when they are flowering. The long, straight stems tend to be floppy, so I think they look better when they get some support. The colour is darker than how it is described most places on the internet, but I believe it was identified by this name a couple of years ago by Oron. This year it looks especially fine, probably as a result of all the rain this autumn.

(https://farm1.staticflickr.com/675/21983726659_9a0a4b7425_n.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/zuCm2Z)
PA141015 Aster novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard'.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/zuCm2Z) by Jorun Tharaldsen (https://www.flickr.com/photos/46063510@N03/), on Flickr

(https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5711/21983587909_f1e194c1fe_n.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/zuBCMK)
PA141003.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/zuBCMK) by Jorun Tharaldsen (https://www.flickr.com/photos/46063510@N03/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on October 15, 2015, 02:14:39 AM
What colour Jorun. So vibrant! I will be on the lookout for this :-)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Ipomoea tricolor 'Heavenly Blue'
Post by: John J on October 15, 2015, 04:38:05 AM
Fantastic photos, Jorun.
David, my wife has been experimenting with Ipomoeas this year, with some success despite our harsh conditions. We are still getting daytime temps in the 30s with nary a sign of rain in the offing, although the evenings are pleasantly cool. This is Ipomoea tricolor 'Heavenly Blue'.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Thornless Butcher's Broom
Post by: John J on October 16, 2015, 08:50:59 AM
Ruscus hypoglossum is not a spectacular plant but is very useful as a drought-tolerant, evergreen, low hedge.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Polygala
Post by: John J on October 17, 2015, 05:37:13 AM
A reliable, reasonably drought tolerant shrub that requires little attention other than the odd short back and sides to keep it in shape. When I first heard its name many years ago I thought it came from the Greek meaning 'very good' but when I saw it written down realised it was actually 'much milk'. It seems it came from the fact that it was deemed to enhance lactation in livestock. Whether this was the result of it being fed to them as fodder or was induced by the aesthetically pleasing effect of the flowers I'll leave others to decide! :-\
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Pearly Gates
Post by: John J on October 18, 2015, 06:01:17 AM
Another Ipomoea tricolor this time a variety called 'Pearly Gates'. Goes quite well with our 'Heavenly Blue'.  :D
Title: Plant of the Day - a butterfly's choice
Post by: David Dickinson on October 19, 2015, 09:25:16 PM
Or, rather, "Plants of the Day". I thought I'd let this butterfly do the choosing for me. The Whites don't usually settle for long on my plants but this one was either ravenous or sensed that the good times were coming to an end and made the most of the flowers that were available. It was a little edgy while having my camera close and flitted about a bit but the temptation to gorge was too strong and it soon came back.

It chose: Sphaeralcea fendleri, Salvia farinacea and Perovskia atriplicifolia
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on October 20, 2015, 06:42:16 AM
'Heavenly Blue' and 'Pearly Gates' flowering together this morning.
Am now off to Italy (Ischia) for the MGS AGM so back in a week.
Title: Plant of the Day Justicia carnea
Post by: David Dickinson on October 23, 2015, 08:45:47 AM
My Justicia carnea was developing flower buds nicely when along came a cold snap. It is still flowering but I'm sure it would have had much fuller flowers had it not been for the drop in temperature. Still, the flowers are always worth waiting for.  :) First photo was taken yesterday, the second last year.
Title: Plant of the Day Salvia Anthony Parker
Post by: David Dickinson on October 24, 2015, 12:17:07 AM
Thanks to Cindy and Alisdair I was able to find the name of a plant that I had seen in a video shot in Cindy's garden. I managed to track a supplier down in Italy and the first few flowers are coming through now. Salvia 'Anthony Parker'. Thanks again Alisdair for all your help in getting in touch with Cindy. Here is the happy ending (new beginning?)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crocus cartwrightianus
Post by: Joanna Savage on October 27, 2015, 02:30:22 PM
Crocus looking good today. Crocus cartwrightianus
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crocus goulimyi
Post by: Joanna Savage on October 27, 2015, 02:42:15 PM
And Crocus goulimyi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on October 28, 2015, 07:16:27 AM
Lovely, Joanna; yesterday we were surprised and pleased to see this in the Garden of Ninfa near Rome, on the MGS tour of gardens in the area following a very enjoyable AGM programme on Ischia
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Autumn-flowering chrysanthemums
Post by: JTh on October 28, 2015, 09:18:42 AM
No autumn without this vibrant show of colours at the weekly open-air market here in Halkidiki. I wonder how they manage to grow them into such perfect spheres?

(https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5708/22035986719_428bdeb2d8_n.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/zzfc8v)
PA161146 Autumn colours.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/zzfc8v) by Jorun Tharaldsen (https://www.flickr.com/photos/46063510@N03/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Puya chilensis
Post by: Fermi on October 29, 2015, 03:02:11 PM
This Puya has been growing in our garden for over ten years and finally started to flower just as we were about to leave for a 2 week trip!
However there were still flowers when we got back,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on October 29, 2015, 08:45:01 PM
Fermi,
How big is this plant?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fermi on November 01, 2015, 11:27:52 AM
Hi Hilary,
The base of the plant is about 1.5m across at the base as it is made up of a number of rosettes. The flower spike is about 2.5m high,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Charithea on November 01, 2015, 04:24:17 PM
Hello David, congratulations on getting your Salvia 'Anthony Parker'. I have finally managed to get a 'cutting ' with roots on. On our way back from the MGS AGM,  I was taken to visit the garden of Marcus Mariani in Velletri by Keay Pierconti ,an MGS member. He had some lovely specimens in his garden and when I admired them he offered a cutting. I am also grateful to Keay because she also gave me cuttings of Salvia guaranitica. I think from the two salvias mentioned above  the guaranitica takes the prize for beauty. I have been given a few cuttings of Salvia splendens 'Martinusborg' by Alessandra Vincequerra.  Amazing coloured stems and flowers. I had success in getting cuttings of Clerodendrum ugandense from Alessandra too. What a nice lady she is. She gave me the address of the site of the nursery that grows salvias in Italy because I complained that  I couldn't find specimens
 here in Cyprus. It is Le Essenze Di Lea.  Before I forget I have read the Salvia book you recommended and I now know why I had so many failures last year trying to grow salvias that thrive in cooler climes.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Hibiscus mutabilis
Post by: John J on November 02, 2015, 10:18:03 AM
Have been absent from this thread for a while, away in Italy followed by accumulated paperwork.
This hibiscus opens a virginal white in the morning before blushing pink and ending its life a deep scarlet in the evening. An untidy tree it's difficult to control as the flowers are produced at the end of the branches so injudicious pruning leads to a loss of blooms.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on November 02, 2015, 10:42:16 AM
I suppose this is hardier than Hibiscus rosa-sinensis?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 02, 2015, 12:30:54 PM
I would say so, Jorun, as it is deciduous. One of its common names is Confederate Rose as it grows well in the confederate states of America apparently, where it is said to sometimes die back to the ground following frost, only to regrow in the spring. As we very rarely get a frost here I can't vouch for this.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Pittosporum tobira
Post by: John J on November 03, 2015, 06:18:05 PM
Not mine but in the gardens of La Mortella on Ischia. An excellent, versatile shrub. Can be grown as a standard or as a hedge, it takes being cut back without flinching. The flowers are very fragrant, not for nothing is it called Japanese Mock Orange. Evergreen and even the seed pods are ornamental.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Salvia splendens 'Martinus Borg'
Post by: John J on November 04, 2015, 05:35:09 AM
Seen in the gardens of La Mortella, Ischia.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Thunbergia grandiflora
Post by: John J on November 05, 2015, 08:18:20 AM
Again not mine although we do have one, not in flower at the moment. This one is in the gardens of La Mortella on Ischia.
Title: Plant of the Day Plumbago auriculata var alba + Ipomea
Post by: David Dickinson on November 05, 2015, 09:49:03 AM
The variety alba is still going strong on my balcony whereas the blue one has stopped flowering. Alba started later too and this was also the pattern last year.

While I was taking the photo of the alba I noticed that an Ipomea was sending a shoot down to the balcony below. I had almost given up hope on the Ipomea when, two days ago, a beautiful blue flower appeared. There are still some more buds but they may not open as colder nights are beginning to set in.

I am about to send the same photos of the Ipomea to the plant identification thread. The leaves are very different from John's "Heavenly Blue" both in shape and texture. I have grown it from a cutting and this might suggest that it is a perennial? I hope so.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Tecoma stans
Post by: John J on November 06, 2015, 07:16:45 AM
In flower now as is the orange variety known as 'Orange Jubilee'.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Tecoma capensis
Post by: John J on November 08, 2015, 08:23:17 AM
Tecoma capensis in a part of one of our boundary hedges. Why is it that more flowers tend to appear on the outside of hedges than inside, so that passers-by get the main benefit? There must be some sort of law governing this phenomenon.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on November 08, 2015, 10:43:10 AM
Maybe the direction in relation to the sun, is it sunnier on the outside?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Asphodeline damascena
Post by: Fermi on November 08, 2015, 01:04:00 PM
The parent of this Asphodeline damascena was grown from seed from (I think) NARGS Seedex though I couldn't tell the difference between it and A. taurica when I had them both in flower,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 08, 2015, 03:48:49 PM
Jorun, thanks for a sensible answer to what was a tongue in cheek question. Actually the inside of this particular hedge gets more sun than the outside, but it doesn't seem to make a difference, all our hedges seem to have a tendency to flower better on the outside than in. Ungrateful little devils! >:(
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on November 08, 2015, 05:13:07 PM
Tecoma capensis.
Afew years ago I went wandering round the streets of Corinth looking for flowers to snap.
I found this plant hanging over a fence and spent ages trying to get a good photo, whenever the wind stopped.
The owner of the house or a neighbour came out and asked me what I was doing. I must have looked very suspicious!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Banksia petiolaris
Post by: Fermi on November 09, 2015, 08:16:19 AM
One of the trailing species of banksia; grown from a young seedling many years ago,
cheers
fermi
Title: Plant of the Day Cotyledon tomentosa (?)
Post by: David Dickinson on November 11, 2015, 09:44:31 AM

Browsing through my new books on succulents ("The Timberland Press Guide to Succulent Plants of the World", Fred Dortot, and "Succulents: The Illustrated Dictionary" + "Succulents II: The New Illustrated Dictionary", Maurizio Sajeva & Mariangela Costanzo) I have come to the conclusion that what I always thought was some kind of Kalanchoe is, in fact, Cotyledon tomentosa subsp tomentosa. (Sent posting to "ID" topic for confirmation). 

Whatever the plant is, it is flowering now on my balcony. :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Retama raetam
Post by: John J on November 12, 2015, 08:26:50 AM
Exceptionally drought tolerant shrub that produces masses of fragrant flowers in spring. Too early for mine to be in flower, this one is on a hillside in Morocco.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Hibiscus mutabilis
Post by: John J on November 14, 2015, 01:26:17 PM
Going from white to red.
Title: Plant of the Day Salvia madrensis.
Post by: David Dickinson on November 16, 2015, 12:19:32 AM
In flower for the first time this morning. Lots more flower spikes appearing but will they beat the cold nights which are setting in and flower? Mine is the "Red Neck Girl" variety but the red stems are not visible in the photo.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Murraya paniculata
Post by: John J on November 16, 2015, 08:53:57 AM
The first flowers of the season beginning to open on one of our bushes. As they are related to citrus the scent from the blossom is equally pleasant.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Cyclamen
Post by: John J on November 17, 2015, 05:54:52 AM
This particular one is the Cyprus endemic and National Flower, Cyclamen cyprium, displaying the quite distinctive magenta M.
Title: Plant of the Day Salvia discolor
Post by: David Dickinson on November 17, 2015, 11:36:50 AM
Just starting to flower for me again. I say "again" because when it arrived from the nursery in early summer this year it had some flowers but they disappeared very quickly. Now there are lots of buds.

I read a suggestion of growing it up through rosemary to counter its spindly nature. Has anybody tried this or any other combinations?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Oxalis purpurea
Post by: John J on November 18, 2015, 05:54:55 AM
Much better behaved and well-mannered than its horribly invasive, gate-crashing relative! >:(
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Oenothera acaulis
Post by: Fermi on November 20, 2015, 01:51:03 PM
This "Evening Primrose" is pure white rather than yellow (though there is a yellow variety) when it first opens; it collapses in the morning and if the weather is cool it reopens soft pink the second evening. If it is hot and dry the flower will shrivel and won't reopen.
It's certainly not as invasive as others in the genus and seems to be adapted to a Mediterranean garden despite coming from South America
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Mirabilis jalapa
Post by: John J on November 21, 2015, 08:49:54 AM
We planted a couple of these several years ago and ever since they have seeded themselves around. Mostly we pull them out before they establish but a few we leave where we don't mind a splash of colour.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Mirabilis jalapa
Post by: Hilary on November 21, 2015, 10:37:17 AM
A pale yellow one in Sparta at the end of October.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Oleander
Post by: John J on November 22, 2015, 06:24:17 AM
The oleander is so common it tends to get overlooked. This is a double flowered variety with a pleasant scent.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Black-eyed Susan
Post by: John J on November 23, 2015, 05:41:17 AM
Our Thunbergia alata did so well that it began to smother the plants around it so we had to cut it right back, but it is beginning to recover.
Title: Plant of the Day Buddleja madagascariensis
Post by: David Dickinson on November 24, 2015, 09:50:07 AM
Starting to come into flower now and it will give me some welcome colour throughout the winter. I think it has a bad reputation for its "perfume" but I don't think it deserves it. I can only smell anything if I brush against it and it isn't really that repugnant at all.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fleur Pavlidis on November 24, 2015, 10:50:23 AM
I wonder how you manage this buddleja on your balcony, David. I use it for thuggish cover-all-in-sight jobs.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on November 24, 2015, 12:11:39 PM
It is true that it does sprawl but I let it grow out through the railings and so it is better seen looking up from the street level. It is in a pot so it doesn't get too out of hand. During the summer and still now a Maurandya barclayana was growing up through it so I had some colour and it compensated for its somewhat straggly growth (though I think it lost leaves due to the competition for light even though the Maurandya is lightweight and has small leaves)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Emu Bush
Post by: John J on November 27, 2015, 05:44:08 AM
One of our Eremophila maculata 'Aurea' just coming into flower. They are in full sun for much of the day and receive no supplementary water in the summer.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Pentas
Post by: John J on November 28, 2015, 11:59:19 AM
Pentas lanceolata, the red-flowered variety.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on November 28, 2015, 04:21:07 PM
Do you manage to keep the Pentas lanceolata for more than one season? And do you grow it in a pot?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 28, 2015, 06:13:57 PM
I can't answer those questions yet, Jorun, as it is a new acquisition. Last week we visited one of the few nurseries on the island that we trust, they specialise in herbs and small perennials. The owner, who is a botanist and geneticist, along with a string of other ...ists, one of which she has a PhD in, is presently concentrating her efforts on salvias. We had a long conversation with her on this subject and along with the car boot load of plants we purchased she gave us this Pentas to try out. It's currently in the ground not far from our kitchen door where we can keep an eye on it so I'll try to remember to let you know how it  survives the winter and next summer. I have to admit that the last one I tried, several years ago, only lasted the one season.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on November 28, 2015, 06:52:09 PM
From my past subtropical experience I would be surprised if Pentas can take lowish temperatures for long. But even in the subtropics it benefits from being cut back hard, or even being grown as an annual from cuttings. I seem to remember that it roots easily.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on November 28, 2015, 11:50:27 PM
I was just curious, I bought one a couple of years ago, it didn't last very long.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on November 29, 2015, 01:26:47 AM
I have tried to keep Pentas indoors over winter but it died once we got to the cold nights in January.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Bush Ipomoea
Post by: John J on November 29, 2015, 09:18:58 AM
As stated above Ipomoea carnea ssp fistulosa is a bush and not the more usual climber.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Brugmansia suaveolens
Post by: John J on December 03, 2015, 08:18:02 AM
Really coming into its own now, and the scent is amazing.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Narcissus Paperwhite
Post by: Joanna Savage on December 03, 2015, 03:32:17 PM
This 'jonquil' began to flower in late November. Occasionally it has flowered for Christmas, but it is usually into Feb before we see it. A great pleasure to see and smell it so early
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on December 04, 2015, 09:06:20 AM
After a prolonged warm autumn here in Italy I have some very strange bedfellows in the garden.
Mandevilla, Salvias, Pelargoniums, Bidens still going strong and tucked under my Solanum rantonneti the first Iris unguicularis flower. Some Hyacynths left in a pot outside are also well advanced and showing the flower buds.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on December 04, 2015, 10:11:21 AM
... and here in England we saw a wild primrose in flower yesterday; what a weird year!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Centaurea biokovensis
Post by: Fermi on December 05, 2015, 08:29:00 AM
Apparently Centaurea biokovensis was on the Red List of Threatened Plants - not sure if it still is.
I got it from a supplier in the Blue Mountains in NSW www.lynnsrareplants.com.au (http://www.lynnsrareplants.com.au) last year and planted it out a couple of months ago into a new raised bed where it appears to be settling in!
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Polygala
Post by: John J on December 13, 2015, 09:39:19 AM
Things seem to have hit a bit of a pre-Christmas lull so here goes with a shrub that is beginning to show more life after struggling a little during the summer heat and drought. Its generic name translates as 'lots of milk', apparently due to the belief that it increases lactation in livestock. Whether this is due to a reaction triggered by eating it or to a sense of well-being induced by its beautiful appearance I'll leave you to decide.  ???
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Aloe arborescens
Post by: John J on December 14, 2015, 07:34:23 AM
With the cooler weather arriving some of our succulents are beginning to revive.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Aeonium
Post by: John J on December 15, 2015, 08:06:24 AM
Staying with succulents this Aeonium is beginning to unfurl following a short burst of rain and a cooling of temperature.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Rhaphiolepis umbellata
Post by: John J on December 16, 2015, 06:05:03 AM
A tough little shrub displaying its autumn berries.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crossandra infundibuliformis
Post by: John J on December 17, 2015, 08:31:28 AM
Not a typical Mediterranean plant, more of an oddity. A friend gave us one as a gift and we are keeping it in the pot to see how it fares. We will probably have to move it indoors when the outside temperature falls below around 10C.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Indigofera pseudotinctoria
Post by: Fermi on December 20, 2015, 02:01:31 PM
We got this Indigofera as a small (?1 or 2 year old) seedling last year but only got to plant it out a few months ago when it was dormant. It has made reasonable growth and is now in flower,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Farfugium japonicum
Post by: John J on December 21, 2015, 08:42:57 AM
Another experiment with an unlikely med plant. Usually found growing alongside streams, ours is still in a pot kept liberally moist until I can find a spot somewhere in the shade that gets regular water. Not an easy task in our garden. There's plenty of shady places as we have a lot of mature trees but the water situation is another matter. In the meantime the local slugs seem to appreciate the fleshy leaves.  >:(
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Joanna Savage on December 22, 2015, 06:32:30 AM
Fermi, re Indigofera pseudotinctoria, do you know why the 'pseudo' in the specific name? Is your plant the same as the plant traditionally used for dyeing Indigo? It is a wonderful dye colour but somehow it is surprising to see pink flowers on the plant.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on December 28, 2015, 05:00:16 PM
Finding time to escape to the garden this afternoon I was assailed by the scent of my Chimonanthus praecox making the time even more enjoyable.
It is a large bush and still retaining its leaves although they are yellow and fall easily when touched but  that is why I had not noticed the flowers before. During the summer we had the roof re-tiled and the workmen hacked away at it quite brutally much to my dismay but obviously ot has not come to any harm - in fact I think it has more flowers than normal.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Clerodendrum x speciosum
Post by: John J on December 30, 2015, 06:10:02 AM
Our plants are bursting into flower in this mild weather we are still experiencing. So many areas of the world are under water due to excessive rain and we are getting none.
Title: Re: Lonicera fragrantissima
Post by: Umbrian on January 10, 2016, 08:43:37 AM
Coming into full bloom now and competing with a nearby Chimonanthus praecox regarding perfume. I actually prefer the pure,sharp scent of the Lonicera. When I took the 'photo early this morning the bees were already about and seeking it out.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Plectranthus neochilus
Post by: John J on January 14, 2016, 08:55:43 AM
Good ground cover plant. Some people find the smell of the foliage a little overpowering.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Melia azedarach
Post by: John J on January 18, 2016, 11:35:48 AM
Seeds of the Indian Bead Tree silhouetted against gathering rain clouds today. They used to attract Egyptian Fruit Bats but we haven't been visited by them for several years now, possibly due to the destruction of their roosting sites.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Euphorbia veneris
Post by: John J on January 23, 2016, 12:30:49 PM
Aphrodite's spurge, a Cyprus endemic, glowing in this morning's sunlight.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Lycoris incarnata
Post by: Fermi on January 30, 2016, 02:26:23 PM
This is the first Lycoris that I got to flower here in central Victoria.
It is quick to flower as there was nothing showing a week ago, but sadly they fade very quickly,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Daisy on February 01, 2016, 01:27:37 PM
The first of this years beautiful, blowsy, hybrid tulips from Lidl.

(https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1560/24382767079_e7cde60286_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/D9C4aR)jan 2016 005 (https://flic.kr/p/D9C4aR) by Daisyincrete (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/), on Flickr

(https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1471/24122298834_8f999ddfab_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/CKB633)jan 2016 009 (https://flic.kr/p/CKB633) by Daisyincrete (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/), on Flickr

(https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1617/24632662812_7d59ab6806_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/DwGQsY)jan 2016 010 (https://flic.kr/p/DwGQsY) by Daisyincrete (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/), on Flickr

...and there are still plenty to come.

(https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1592/24122264354_86a396db42_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/CKAUMy)jan 2016 012 (https://flic.kr/p/CKAUMy) by Daisyincrete (https://www.flickr.com/photos/93752583@N02/), on Flickr

Daisy :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fleur Pavlidis on February 02, 2016, 10:32:55 AM
Photos of your lovely garden are as welcome as usual, Daisy.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 04, 2016, 09:06:29 AM
Very early into full flower this year after a mild winter (so far) a young Mimosa that I planted last April.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 04, 2016, 09:11:23 AM
What happened to my photograph? Will try again.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 04, 2016, 09:14:30 AM
Oh dear - sorry about that!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 05, 2016, 07:59:03 AM
Visited our house in the country yesterday and the Mimosa there is still in tight  bud - what a difference nearly 500 metres in height can make. The Jasminum nudiflorum was in full flow however - a really good winter performer withstanding summer drought well.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Ipomoea purpurea 'Star of Yalta'
Post by: John J on February 05, 2016, 04:22:37 PM
Grown from a seed obtained through the MGS seed exchange last year. Thank you, Chantal.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Medicago arborea
Post by: John J on February 08, 2016, 02:38:56 PM
Beginning to awaken from its summer dormancy.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Phlomis lunariifolia
Post by: John J on February 09, 2016, 06:01:38 AM
The phlomis are preparing to add their shade of yellow to the spring display.
Title: Re: Phlomis lunariifolia
Post by: Alisdair on February 09, 2016, 08:43:45 AM
That's a very attractive Phlomis, John, which I've never heard of before. Is it endemic to Cyprus? Common there?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on February 09, 2016, 10:58:57 AM
According to the information that I have, Alisdair, it's indigenous to Cyprus but can also be found in southern Turkey. Of the handful of phlomis that occur in Cyprus 2 are described as rare endemic and 2 as rare indigenous, so I guess this species is the commonest of the bunch from that aspect.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on February 09, 2016, 04:50:34 PM
Following on from Umbrian's post regarding her Jasminum nudiflorum our yellow jasmine (Jasminum mesnyi) is also bursting into life.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Senna artemesioides
Post by: John J on February 10, 2016, 05:56:49 AM
One more plant adding not only its own touch of yellow to the garden but also its incomparable scent.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on February 10, 2016, 06:04:37 AM
Continuing the yellow theme, should Sunflowers be out this early? This is one from a batch of seed packets that my wife picked up when we were in UK last July 'celebrating' my XXth birthday with my family. The packets said they were from the Eden Project if I recall correctly and were being sold in aid of charity.  ???
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 10, 2016, 07:37:05 AM
Yes. John, my Jasminum Mesnyi is also coming into flower - very early. A very strange year.
The nudiflorum has of course been cheering us up for weeks. The other day I saw a hedge of it that looked stunning, unfortunately I was in my car and there was nowhere suitable to stop and take a 'photo.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crassula ovata
Post by: John J on February 11, 2016, 06:07:40 AM
I seem to have been neglecting the succulents, many of which are also coming into their own at this time of year.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Kalanchoe blossfeldiana
Post by: John J on February 12, 2016, 05:57:12 AM
Sticking with the succulents for today.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Araucaria heterophylla
Post by: John J on February 13, 2016, 05:49:31 AM
Our Norfolk Island Pine silhouetted against the February sky.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 16, 2016, 09:04:14 AM
Another early bloomer after our mild winter Coronilla glauca.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Nerine filifolia
Post by: Fermi on February 16, 2016, 12:14:05 PM
The first nerine in our garden this year is Nerine filifolia now identified as N. masoniorum, actually in a pot as I only got it from a friend last year,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on February 17, 2016, 08:05:38 AM
Particularly pleased to find this beauty - the first time this Hellebore has produced flowers for several years. It is in a spot that is very dry but I have been afraid to move it since I know to my cost that Hellebores resent disturbance. I lost a dark purple/maroon one when trying to re- locate it. The happy side of that though was that two or three years later I found a seedling in bloom nearby that was almost as dark.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Eremophila
Post by: John J on February 20, 2016, 09:11:37 AM
Two for the price of one, Eremophila glabra and E. maculata 'Aurea'.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on February 20, 2016, 09:56:42 AM
John, do you give your Eremophilas any water? They look wonderful additions to a mediterranean garden!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on February 20, 2016, 02:15:59 PM
Alisdair, our plants are situated at the side of the house facing East so they get full sun from it rising until around midday when they are then in the shade of the building. That area is not irrigated and we give them no additional water. As you say they are ideal candidates for mediterranean gardens, really living up to their name which roughly translates as 'desert lovers'.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on February 21, 2016, 09:18:52 AM
Thanks, must try them! And that's a lovely planting, John.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Loropetalum chinense
Post by: John J on February 24, 2016, 06:23:40 AM
The Chinese fringe flower living up to its name.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Buddleja madagascariensis
Post by: John J on February 25, 2016, 06:45:29 PM
Opening nicely and attracting the butterflies, shame about the smell. :(
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Retama raetam
Post by: John J on February 26, 2016, 09:52:01 AM
Surely one of the most drought tolerant shrubs available to us.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Osteospermum
Post by: John J on February 27, 2016, 06:16:27 AM
I find the various osteospermums useful for adding splashes of colour at this time of year.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Lantana camara
Post by: John J on February 28, 2016, 05:57:18 AM
I know this plant has a bad reputation and is actually banned in some parts of the world but in our location it doesn't get enough water to allow it to become unruly. Its small clusters of flowers like miniature posies can be quite attractive.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Hibiscus rosa-sinensis
Post by: John J on February 29, 2016, 05:57:39 AM
Very commonly grown although even here in our virtually frost-free location we have had problems with their cold-tenderness. A few years ago 2 consecutive extremely cold December nights decimated a whole hedge of them. They never fully recovered to the extent that I took them out and replaced them with a low hedge of Ruscus hypoglossum. On the plus side this did open up a whole new aspect.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Chasmanthe aethiopica
Post by: John J on March 01, 2016, 05:33:21 AM
Another low maintenance plant. Tidy it up when it dies down in summer and wait for it to return in the spring.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Justicea brandegeana
Post by: John J on March 02, 2016, 05:49:53 AM
Maybe not one for the open ground but ours grows quite happily in a container.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Rosa banksiae 'Lutea'
Post by: John J on March 04, 2016, 10:49:23 AM
Looks great cascading when in full bloom.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Lycoris elsiae
Post by: Fermi on March 13, 2016, 08:20:30 AM
This lycoris has survived Mediterranean conditions in our garden with light frosts in the winter and a hot dry summer, though when the spikes appeared this year I started watering the area in which it grows,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Zauschneria 'Catalina'
Post by: Fermi on April 05, 2016, 04:09:01 AM
Zauschneria has been submerged into Epilobium but I prefer the previous name and will continue to use it!
This is a selection we bought from Lambley Nursery a few years ago but only planted out this year - it has burgeoned as it's been getting regular watering over the summer.
Sadly we do not have humming-birds which would be the usual pollinators of this species, I think,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day -Styrax officinalis
Post by: John J on April 10, 2016, 12:38:57 PM
Native to Cyprus and needing little or no attention or water, ours are in full flower now.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Anthylis barba-jovis
Post by: John J on April 10, 2016, 12:42:50 PM
I believe when I included this plant on the A-Z list I said it was not yet old enough to flower, well it has now come of age.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Cyclamen graecum
Post by: Fermi on April 10, 2016, 12:58:29 PM
This is one of the Cyclamen graecum raised from seed from the NARGS Seedex many years ago. I planted it in a space between the rocks as I'd seen pictures of them growing this way in the wild,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Charithea on April 10, 2016, 03:41:51 PM
what a beautiful colour Firmi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Pallenis maritima
Post by: John J on April 11, 2016, 07:47:00 AM
Following the cracks in the path.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fermi on April 11, 2016, 12:22:44 PM
John,
I had no idea Asteriscus maritimus had changed its name to Pallenis maritima! :o
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on April 11, 2016, 02:10:44 PM
Fermi,
I often wonder if there are some taxonomists out there with a nasty sense of humour that go around changing the names of plants just to tax the ageing brains of people like me. I spend years memorizing names only to find that they are no longer accepted and I have to start all over again. >:(
Title: Re: Plant of the Day -Strelitzia reginae
Post by: John J on April 12, 2016, 04:51:42 AM
Ours has been producing its 'birds' for a few weeks now.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Bougainvillea
Post by: John J on April 13, 2016, 07:36:39 AM
Ours is in full flame right now.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on May 10, 2016, 10:06:12 AM
This thread has been a little neglected of late but here is a low maintenance shrub, Spartium junceum. The strange weather patterns we've been experiencing this year seem to have affected a lot of the spring flowering plants, these included as they are only now beginning to bloom, almost a month later than normal.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on May 11, 2016, 05:40:22 AM
Whereas here in Italy the Spartium junceum is in glorious full bloom already, about a month earlier than usual.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on May 12, 2016, 12:11:38 PM
And I lost my four Spartium bushes the last two years, I have no explanation why. They are in full bloom everywhere here in Halkidiki now, obviously the season for insects liking yellow.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Jasmine "Clotted Cream"
Post by: David Dickinson on May 20, 2016, 11:31:43 AM
I bought the "Clotted Cream" last year in the uk. It grew well on my balcony in a pot but didn't produce any flowers. When I moved house at Christmas all the plants were left in their pots in the garden (and most of them still are even now!). This year at ground level and more sheltered from drying breezes, it has decided to start flowering. I have included a picture of my standard white Jasmine to show the difference in colour and the difference in flower shape. The perfume is equally good in both.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on May 22, 2016, 11:59:16 AM
Well spotted Alisdair, must confess that I hadn't noticed the six petalled flower! I will keep an eye on the flowers as they open during the next few weeks and let you know if this was a one-off, or not.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on May 23, 2016, 11:53:33 AM
Two more six-petalled Jasmines today and one four-petalled. Looking at the photo it seems that one petal has fallen off the latter but in real life they form an almost perfect cross. Now I'll have to keep an eye open for four-petalled flowers too!
Title: Plant of the Day Houttuynia cordata
Post by: David Dickinson on May 29, 2016, 09:31:08 PM
This plant struggled on for years on my balcony, I tried full shade, part shade, the lot. When I moved house at Christmas pots were placed randomly in the garden. Houttuynia cordata was put in afternoon sun. The plant has not been moved since and has not been repotted yet, From the tiniest little shoot that survived the balcony experience and winter in the new place, new life has sprung forth and I just noticed a first flower this evening (low light, hence he poor quality photo). I bought it originally as I read it was tolerant of full shade but it seems to enjoy full sun even more.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day unidentified (as yet) cactus
Post by: David Dickinson on June 01, 2016, 08:04:55 AM
This is still flowering strongly after nearly a month of sending up flowers. I have also posted this on the "plant identification" pages.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 01, 2016, 09:58:15 AM
This has been identified by Hinterland as Rebutia heliosa Thanks again Hinterland :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day: Dianthus deltoides "Alboides"
Post by: David Dickinson on June 03, 2016, 09:57:25 PM
I was in Berlin at the beginning of May and I bought a small Dianthus deltoides, washed off most of the soil and brought it back to Rome. I am not a big fan of large-flowered, colourful  Dianthus but deltoides seemed much more delicate from the photograph on the label. And so it has turned out to be. Lots of new roots growing and the first flowers opening up just 3 weeks after its journey in a rucksack.  I like to recycle transparent plastic cups which are thrown out in their hundreds of thousands every year, not only from an environmental point of view but also because they are ideal for seeing how cuttings etc are doing root-wise.

Reading up about it, it would seem that it has a fair chance of survival. I had hoped to see lots of references to it on the forum but there are only 2 ("Nature wins Gold" and "Typical Garden Flowers 100yrs ago"). Is this because it is so common-place in mediterranean gardens that there is no need to talk about it here? Hope so.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 03, 2016, 10:01:08 PM
Excuse me. Didn't proof read my previous email. Tut, tut! Should read Dianthus deltoides "Albiflorus". Not even sure "Alboides" means anything.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Zantedeschia (albomaculata?)
Post by: David Dickinson on June 08, 2016, 11:32:17 AM
I can't claim any credit for this one. It popped up out of a pot which had been left in the garden by the previous occupier. It may be albomaculata or it could be a hybrid with albomaculata in the mix somewhere?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Salvia guaranitica
Post by: David Dickinson on June 09, 2016, 08:28:52 AM
I am now beginning to understand what parents feel like when their children take their first steps from home alone. Having always had plants in pots I now have a few areas in my new garden where I can plant directly into soil. Salvia guaranitica was one of the first to be released. I needn't have worried so much. It is flowering now even though it is only about a foot tall. I don't know which variety it is but the colour is a more intense blue than the photo shows. "Black and Blue"?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 19, 2016, 11:56:17 PM
One plant for today (Echinops denudata? - sent to id pages also) and one "almost made it" or, in the words of a famous song "What a difference a day makes!". I saw the buds, couldn't check the following morning due to work commitments and what I saw the the morning after that you can see in the attached photos (also sent to the id pages). One of the many plants still in crates after my house move I'm afraid, so not the most beautiful of photos. Sorry.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Charithea on June 21, 2016, 12:52:42 PM
Hi David. Congratulations on your success with Salvia guaranitica.  I have not been very lucky with it or with the Anthony Parker variety.  In October, I  brought back cuttings from Rome from the late Keay Pierconti and one plant with roots on from a friend of hers but both ended in failure. See photo of cuttings . Finally I  made a 'New Salvia patch' and have sown seeds of guaranitica and  other salvias.  The guaranitica died but luckily the others  did not disappoint me. They don't have the colour or the presence of the 2 salvias mentioned but they survive the heat.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 22, 2016, 12:39:15 AM
Hi Charithea

The S guaranitica is so busy sending up flowers that it seems to have forgotten about growing taller. I am loathe to nip off the new flower spikes to encourage it to do so for obvious reasons. It is also in a shady spot but once it gets to 3 feet or more it will poke out into the sun. When I was planting it out a small piece broke off and that has now produced a good root system. I will see if I can get some S "Anthony Parker" cuttings to strike and then get them over to you in the autumn.  I'll update you on that around September time.  :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Charithea on June 22, 2016, 04:00:04 PM
Thank you David.  It is very kind of you. I know that you have a Maurandya Barclayana so perhaps you can tell me if the photo of my plant is one of them.  I had sown many seeds and had lots of seedlings but this is the only surviving one.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 23, 2016, 01:34:54 AM
Hi Charithea,

RE Maurandya Barclayana - It looks very much like it. I will take a photo on Friday morning of the seedlings I have on the go (tomorrow one of those horribly busy days at work :( ) and post it so we can make comparison.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Gymnocalycium mihanovichii
Post by: David Dickinson on June 23, 2016, 02:05:31 AM
Dilemas, dilemas ??? Where do I post this? Plant of the day? Obviously "yes" because here it is. But other contenders were Cactus and succulent pages and also plant id. The latter because I wrote last summer about this plant saying that I would probably have to wait years to see what the flower was like as the plant was very small. That was not to be, luckily, and my  Gymnocalycium mihanovichii /G friedrichii/ G mihanovichii ssp friedrichi? is now giving me these beautiful flowers.

This year the cactus is very different in colour to that of last year when it was a dark green and brown marbling ???
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 23, 2016, 02:10:35 AM
Being an English teacher, it might also be a good idea to learn how to spell dilemma! ::) :-[
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on June 23, 2016, 06:08:22 AM
I love the colour of your cactus

Does the flower last long?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 25, 2016, 12:12:15 AM
Hi Hilary,

This is the first year that the cactus has flowered but these are the same 2 flowers taken this morning. So, 2 full days, at least. How many more flowers might come up over the rest of the year? I'll put a post here if they do :-)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Gymnocalycium horstii ssp buenekeri
Post by: David Dickinson on June 25, 2016, 12:42:30 AM
Here is my favourite among my cactus that have flowered. The colour reminds me of the top of a cappuccino. Flowering again for me this year, as it has done for the last few years, Gymnocalycium horstii ssp buenekeri. This was kindly identified for me on this forum by GRJoe last year. I might get two or more flowerings this year. The flowers I photographed last year were in September.

Like so many of my plants after the house move, this one is not in its final location so the photos are not the best. But the flowers are truly beautiful.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Justicia carnea
Post by: David Dickinson on June 26, 2016, 10:06:26 PM
Another plant with a beautiful flower colour which is in flower at the moment. This one is in a shady corner of the courtyard. Justicia carnea, if that is its currently accepted name. It seems to be one of those whose name chops and changes according to the weather.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Gymnocalycium mihanovichii /G friedrichii/ etc
Post by: David Dickinson on June 26, 2016, 10:20:00 PM
Hi Hilary,

The same 2 flowers are still going strong today
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on July 21, 2016, 08:07:04 AM
Almost exactly a year ago I posted a photo of our Euphorbia dendroides in its summer dormant state. Usually it begins to show signs of life around September time. This morning as I passed by it was, at first glance, looking its usual comatose, summer-dormant self (see first photo) until I looked more closely and saw that it was already beginning to put out new growth (see second photo). This despite the fact that the daytime temperatures of late have been nudging 40 degrees C and it has had absolutely no water for over 4 months.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day (night), yet to be identified
Post by: David Dickinson on July 24, 2016, 02:53:45 AM
I came home at dusk tonight to see what is in the first picture. I thought it was shutting up for the night and then I thought to myself how strange it was that I could have walked by it this morning and not noticed the flower. An hour later I went out again to throw out the rubbish and saw what is in the second photo. It was evidently just starting to open when I had seen it earlier.

Will think about identification tomorrow.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Gladiolus murielae ("Acidanthera")
Post by: David Dickinson on September 04, 2016, 05:37:48 PM
Thought I would send this despite the fact that thousands of you probably have it as a common-place flower in your gardens For years in my old flat I repeatedly tried it but with no success, I  still do not understand why. It appears in pots at ground level in several gardens in Rome. Now that I am at ground level too my attempt this year has paid off with several blooming and several more in bud,
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Thunbergia grandiflora
Post by: John J on September 15, 2016, 10:45:36 AM
Bravely flowering despite the intense heat we are still experiencing.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Salvia sinaloensis
Post by: David Dickinson on October 23, 2016, 09:51:16 PM
Cheating  a little bit here. Yes I did take the photo. Yes it is in my garden. Yes it is in flower now. But I can't claim that bringing it to flower was anything to do with me as I bought it only two weeks ago. I hope that I will be able to get it to cover and spill over the edges of large pots  which will contain other, taller plants. Does anybody grow this? Some say it will take full summer sun but others say it prefers some shade. The picture is true to color for the leaves but the flowers are a darker blue than in this photo.

When I took it out of its original pot there were several runners already bursting out so it should be very easy to propagate.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on October 30, 2016, 04:07:17 PM
I haven't posted anything on here for a while but one of our new baby Leucophyllum frutescens is already beginning to show off. It is getting a deep watering twice a week at the moment (it is in full sun for most of the day) but that will be reduced as it grows up.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Leucophyllum frutescens
Post by: Alisdair on October 30, 2016, 05:40:58 PM
John, You may find you have to give it at least occasional deep waterings even when it's outgrown its nappies. We put one into our unwatered part several years ago, watering it only in its first year then nothing. It's now survived for about six or seven years but scarcely grows, staying baby-sized, and not flowering much.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Texas Sage - Leucophyllum frutescens
Post by: Fermi on October 31, 2016, 08:18:52 AM
John,
that's a new one on me! I'll have to search it out (initial searches find it available in WA and Qld!)
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on October 31, 2016, 10:33:06 AM
Fermi, well worth getting hold of if possible. As Alisdair says is slow growing if kept on a low water diet but we have 2 more mature plants that have been allowed to grow to about 2 metres with watering at irregular intervals, usually when I remember! They will take clipping back to keep them bushy and this often results in them producing a mass of flowers creating a purplish-pink ball.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Euryops pectinatus
Post by: John J on October 31, 2016, 10:42:47 AM
A very useful low maintenance plant that flowers over a long period. Not fussy about soil type as long as it has good drainage. Likes full sun and needs little summer water. Good candidate for using as a pot plant.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Leucophylum frutescens
Post by: Charithea on October 31, 2016, 05:02:03 PM
Here is a photograph of the above mention plant. It is 10 feet away from our gate. It belongs to my neighbour. It is about 2 years old.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Nandina domestica
Post by: John J on November 19, 2016, 07:24:57 PM
Tried to get a photo of our young Nandina starting to take on its autumn colour. Not as successful as I had hoped.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Texas Sage - Leucophyllum frutescens
Post by: Fermi on November 20, 2016, 12:29:40 AM
John,
that's a new one on me! I'll have to search it out (initial searches find it available in WA and Qld!)
cheers
fermi
The plot thickens! No one I've contacted has grown it here in Victoria!
Seeing your splendid plant makes it even more desirable!
The search goes on,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Tagetes lemmonii
Post by: David Dickinson on December 16, 2016, 03:58:30 AM
After Pauline kindly identified this plant for me last year I found one for sale this summer. It flowered for me during the early part of autumn and is now flowering for me again even though the evenings are cold - around 4°C. The bright flowers are a welcome sight at this time of year. By the way, my previous references to the plant contain the misspelling "lemonii" and do not come up in search if the correct spelling is used
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Tagetes lemmonii
Post by: David Dickinson on December 16, 2016, 04:02:00 AM
I forgot to add that I will shortly be sending seeds of this plant to the MSG seed bank :-)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Tagetes lemmonii
Post by: Alisdair on December 16, 2016, 08:45:43 AM
(David, I think those earlier spellings are now corrected....)  :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Osteospermum
Post by: John J on February 25, 2017, 02:28:41 PM
One of the many varieties of Osteospermum reflecting the late afternoon winter sun.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Senecio hybrid
Post by: David Dickinson on February 26, 2017, 12:49:14 AM
How lucky you are to have the Osteospermum flowers. After the very cold snap here I only have one or two plants flowering. I bought this one as a "Senecio hybrid" but looks like Senecio fulgens. The main plant, which was growing into a really nice big clump, was reduced to a slimy mass by the sub-zero temperatures. But only 15 meters away in the courtyard a cutting that I had taken (and completely forgotten about) shows no sign of the bad weather and is flowering at the moment.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Gerbera jamesonii
Post by: John J on March 10, 2017, 01:50:23 PM
This beautiful flower is the first of the year on our small patch of these plants.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crossyne flava
Post by: Fermi on March 13, 2017, 05:12:35 AM
Crossyne flava is a South African geophyte which forms large bulbs with a pair of large green leaves which grow through winter and spring and wither away in summer.
When autumn arrives the flower spathe emerges from the bare ground to quickly split to allow the flower-head to expand to the size of a football (or a soccer-ball to those in non-European countries!) as the seedpods develop. When the seeds are ripe the flower-stalk dries out and breaks off allowing the seed-head to become a "tumble-weed" spreading the seeds far and wide!
In our garden I try to catch the seeds before they scatter - hopefully I'll have some to bring to the Czech Rock Garden Conference in May in Prague http://czrgs.cz/conference-registration.html  (http://czrgs.cz/conference-registration.html)
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on March 13, 2017, 10:09:36 AM
Fascinating starburst flowers!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Dicliptera suberecta
Post by: John J on June 04, 2017, 04:59:58 PM
I know I have posted about this plant before but I find it such an easy one to grow that I feel it deserves another mention. We acquired our original plant from the garden of Fleur, one of the Forum Moderators, in Greece and have since increased it and planted others around the garden. Wherever we put them, whatever the conditions they never complain, either about the soil, the lack of water, too much sun, too little sun, they grow away merrily and produce their bright red 'firecracker' flowers. Thanks Fleur for introducing us to this little marvel.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Ruellia brittoniana
Post by: David Dickinson on June 05, 2017, 05:00:08 AM
Agree totally with what JohnJ has to say about Dicliptera suberecta. Marvellous plant. Survived a few days at -6C without a flinch. Just coming into bloom for me today.

Ruellia brittoniana didn't like the cold of this winter one little bit and was cut down to soil level. But around February there were signs of life and the first flowers were out this week.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fleur Pavlidis on June 05, 2017, 07:35:09 AM
Is the colour, i.e. Pink, correct, David, or is it a quirk of posting? I ask because I was very excited to find a pink version in a nursery last year which has also just flowered whereas my usual purple-flowered plants are still thinking about it.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 05, 2017, 09:41:05 AM
I'm afraid it is down to using a cheap camera. It is the usual purple.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Salvia clevelandii
Post by: David Dickinson on June 10, 2017, 11:58:32 AM
Okay, I confess, I am becoming a bit of a Salviaholic. But please don't try to cure me. I bought Salvia clevelandii last year and was completely taken with the aromatic leaves. Hard to describe. Aromatic yes but fresh too. The freshness meets you as you walk into the garden but it is in no way overpowering. Very close by is Tagetes lemmonii which produces scent in abundance when brushed against but the Salvia c. aroma is constant and wins through. Survived an extremely cold winter without losing a single leaf and is now producing beautiful flowers on long stems which dance around in the breeze. Highly recommended. Let's see if I get seeds to send to Chantal.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Convolvulus cneorum
Post by: David Dickinson on June 15, 2017, 01:28:35 AM
A strange entry for June but for some reason, some 6 weeks after the plant finished flowering, it sent out a lone flower today. A white Gaura was flowering nearby too.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on June 15, 2017, 06:41:40 AM
David, our C. cneorum finished flowering some time ago too but the C. oleifolius has carried right on through.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Canna hybrids
Post by: David Dickinson on June 18, 2017, 12:19:12 AM
 C. oleifolius looks very interesting especially if it gives a longer or different flowering period than C. cneorum

On a different thread, way back in the cold of January I wrote that so many thinks had been completely cut back by the long period of sub zero temperatures. I worried for my Canna hybrid plants but, as you can see, I needn't have. Two different types came into flower a couple of days ago. The pale yellow one I raised from seed of a pink parent
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on June 20, 2017, 08:26:30 AM
I realize that it's a couple of years since Hibiscus syriacus featured on this thread but our plants are bursting into full bloom now.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Cyclamen
Post by: David Dickinson on June 21, 2017, 12:37:02 AM
Another strange plant to be posting as "Plant of the Day" in the baking heat of June. This flower sprang up a couple of days ago and hasn't been frazzled by the short spell of afternoon sun it receives
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Crataegus mexicana
Post by: Fermi on June 21, 2017, 02:36:23 PM
Right on the winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere we have the Mexican Hawthorn still in full leaf and loaded with golden fruit.
We also have the red-fruited hybrid, Crataegus 'Smithiana' which is shedding foliage as the fruit ripens
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Caesalpinia gilliesii
Post by: David Dickinson on June 30, 2017, 09:04:45 AM
I grew this from seed and this is its third summer and its first flower. It was almost destroyed by the very cold winter but one stem survived. After it has finished flowering I think I will cut it back a little to encourage branching ad stake it up to encourage vertical growth.

Title: Re: Plant of the Day Tithonia rotundifolia "Red Torch"
Post by: David Dickinson on July 31, 2017, 01:10:19 AM
I have been experimenting with a few annuals this year. One of them is Tithonia rotundifolia "Red Torch" (seeds from Special Plants, UK). I have a few plants dotted around and the first flowered for me a couple of days back. Seeds were sown in late february under glass and quickly germinated.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Hibiscus trionum
Post by: David Dickinson on September 18, 2017, 10:21:52 AM
This year, now that I have a little more space, I have been growing some annuals. Hibiscus trionum is one that has been very successful. A high germination rate from the seed and the plants have coped well with the high temperatures of the early part of summer. With some watering, of course. I'll be sending some seed to Chantal shortly.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Caesalpinia
Post by: Fleur Pavlidis on September 19, 2017, 09:06:21 AM
Going back to your previous post, I'm surprised your Caesalpinia was harmed by the cold. I've never seen any damage on mine even after frosts which cut young Jacaranda and Grevillea robusta to the ground. Anyway I assure you Caesalpinia can take any amount of hacking. They spring up all round my garden so I have to keep them in order with regular severe pruning.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on September 19, 2017, 11:58:02 PM
Hi Fleur,

We were at -6C  at night for about 6 days and the day time temperatures just got up to around 0C by early morning in January. The soil was frozen for most of that time. Very unusual for Rome. It was milder in the north than it was for us. Cestrum nocturnum (grown from seed a few years back), 2 different Epiphyllums and Ipomea indica grown from a cutting were just some of the plants that didn't make it through at all.

 by the way, the Caesalpinia has made a great comeback. Just the one flower (posted earlier) but lots of  side branches. Looking much better after the equally extreme summer we have had.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Charithea on September 20, 2017, 06:00:49 PM
Hi David. I love your Hibiscus trionum and I shall ask for some seeds from the seed bank. My Anthony Parker has grown BIG and it is finely getting ready to flower. I will post a picture as soon as it flowers.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Caesalpinia
Post by: Fleur Pavlidis on September 20, 2017, 08:03:19 PM
That was quite cold! I'm in central London at the moment and after reading your reply I've offered to dig up a seedling to bring here to live on my brother's balcony. He already has a lemon tree and a Judas tree doing well.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Hibiscus coccineus
Post by: David Dickinson on September 21, 2017, 04:42:52 AM
I also grew this from seed and after 3 years it is now flowering for the first time. I keep the soil moist but I wouldn't say it was boggy. So, although it is called "Swamp Hibiscus", the soil doesn't need to be too wet. I grow it alongside Ruellia brittoniana and they both have done very well this year for me. The Ruellia was cut back to ground level with the -6C of January and took a while to show signs of life again in the spring. The Hibiscus is a herbaceous perennial anyway. I only wish my herbaceous Salvia sinaloensis had been so resilient. It never came back after its dormant winter period. A sad loss because I found it a very attractive plant.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on September 21, 2017, 04:49:13 AM
Hi Charithea

Good to hear that your Salvia "Anthony Parker" has taken off.  :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Emilia coccinea
Post by: David Dickinson on September 21, 2017, 12:45:23 PM
Another annual I am growing this year, and intend to continue doing so, is Emilia coccinea. I like small delicate flowers and the foliage is a fresh green colour. Not needing half as much water as you might expect though it did get some watering. Very obligingly it quickly covered the sides of the large black buckets I am using as plant pots. Much cheaper than very large plant pots and the handles come in as very useful when I need to move them around (dragging as they are very heavy). Easy to drill holes in the bottom of them.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on September 22, 2017, 08:28:27 AM
What size of bucket are you using, David? And are they the sort with a handle on each side?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Tulipa agenensis ssp sharonensis
Post by: Fermi on September 23, 2017, 04:56:05 AM
I posted pics on this tulip on the day it first opened when just the interior was red; now the colour is through to the exterior of the petal as well,
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 28, 2017, 08:35:17 AM
David, your 'Anthony Parker' is beginning to show some colour.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Caroline on October 01, 2017, 12:22:29 AM
Going back to the posts on Hibiscus trionum, this is a NZ native which my mother used to grow.  I have never had much luck with it, I suspect because my soil is too heavy.  Charithea, what are the regulations about importing small quantities of seed into Europe from New Zealand?  I ask because one of the big NZ seed companies sells packets of seed of "Puarangi", as it's called in Maori.  If you'd like some without waiting to get some from the seed bank, I could easily slip a couple of packets into an envelope and post it to you - just send me a message with your address. Hilary, if you google Puarangi stamp you'll see that Hibiscus trionum featured on stamps in the  1960's both before and after we changed over to decimal currency.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Hilary on October 01, 2017, 06:05:54 AM
Hi,
I have just looked up Puarangi stamps as you suggested.
I was interested and surprised to see  that earrings and bracelets are made using the stamps. Very colourful
Title: Re: seed imports
Post by: Alisdair on October 01, 2017, 07:20:30 AM
Caroline, generally speaking there are no import restrictions for small quantities of seed sent from NZ to Europe.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day: Puya chilensis
Post by: Fermi on November 14, 2017, 01:57:27 PM
This Puya chilensis is about 15 years ago and flowered for the first time 2 years ago just as we left for 2 weeks in NZ so we missed most of the flowering!
It is just flowering for the second time - you can see the old spike which we have yet to take down!
Apart from the bees the honey-eaters were also enjoying the flowers
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day: Montanoa grandiflora
Post by: Fleur Pavlidis on December 05, 2017, 11:01:45 AM
It was nearly wiped out by the cold last winter but has come back bigger than ever. It suffered a rain storm and high winds but is still standing tall and holding its flowers.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on December 06, 2017, 08:12:23 AM
Can you give more information about Montanoa grandiflora Fleur......beautiful leaves as well as attractive flowers - when I googled it all I got was Clematis montana grandiflora and your 'photo does not look like a Clematis to me....
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on December 06, 2017, 08:27:41 AM
Should actually be Montanoa grandiflora I think... So I've changed the name in the earlier posts
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Pycnostachys urticifolia
Post by: David Dickinson on December 07, 2017, 02:56:45 AM
Seeds I got from Chantals seed bank last year are now plants about 3.5 foot tall.  I read that  it flowers late in the season and is often cut back by frost. We have had a couple of nights where we have reached 1C for an hour or two but the plant is still going strong. A lot more flowers than you see in these pictures taken a couple of weeks back. I will need to replant them next year if the grow again at the same rate.

I like the flower heads where the flowers are moving up the head and there are the seed pods developing below. I imagine the spiny-looking seed heads is why it is known as the hedgehog plant.

Thanks Chantal :-)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on December 07, 2017, 08:49:59 AM
Thanks for the correction of the name on Fleur's post Alisdair. Have tracked it down now and it sounds lovely although if it grows as big as suggested on one site then it is not for me and my new small garden!  Really attractive as shown on Fleur's 'photo however and always interesting to see " unknown" plants.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on December 07, 2017, 08:51:56 AM
Love your " hedgehog" plant too David  :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Pycnostachys urticifolia
Post by: David Dickinson on December 10, 2017, 07:47:50 PM
Unfortunately just a few hours below 0C last night was enough to turn the leaves of Pycnostachys urticifolia to a mush. At least I know that, if it doesn't recover, I can grow it as an annual and the year is long enough for it to produce flowers. Let's see if I can get seed from it or will the cold prevent the seed from developing? The bumble bees love the plant so there should be a good chance of fertile seed being produced.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Caroline on December 17, 2017, 05:16:08 AM
Snapped on an Auckland street a week ago.  This is Metrosideros excelsa, or pohutukawa, which of course flowers close to Christmas.  I'm almost certain this is the cultivar known as "Vibrance", which is widely used as a street tree. It flowers at an early age in this delicious shade of deep orange, and has an upright habit.  Merry Christmas to MGS Forum followers.

Caroline
Title: Re: Plant of the Day bucket size
Post by: David Dickinson on December 17, 2017, 06:04:16 PM
Hi Alisdair,

I think I forgot to reply to your posting re the size of the buckets I am using.

They are as you thought, the thick black plastic ones with handles. I am using various sizes from 75l down through 50l and then 40l. So far so good. No splits with neither the summer nor winter extremes of temperature. And the handles help with moving them when necessary. Holes are easily drilled into the bottom for drainage. I put a layer of horticultural fleece across the bottom to stop soil being washed out.

I have put them in  tiers from the back to the front and on the front line I have put some trailing plants to cover the front of the bins e.g. Helianthemum "Ben Fhada" (just getting big enough now to cover the front but worth the wait, I hope, If it flowers next year) and Emilia coccinea    (truly an annual? Still going strong for me though flowering marginally less now than in the summer and autumn). Some clay pots at the very front but I have bought some flat plastic builder's trays 20cm deep where I intend to plant a mix of high growing and trailing sedums to form the front line next year. It may be too hot but I have a lot of cuttings on the go. The parent plants will be kept more in the shade, as they were this year, so I shouldn't lose any type of plant altogether.

At the back there are tall bushes e.g. Buddleja madagascariensis or tall growing climbers e.g. Plumbago capensis  I also train annual climbers up through the more robust perennials e.g. Ipomea quamoclit (summer flowering) growing up the stems of a yellow rambling rose (spring flowering) and Clematis armandii (early spring flowering). Maurandya barclayana is the fourth in the combination and still flowering even after the freezing temperature of one night last week.- thanks for the seeds Chantal  :)

Here are some pics to give you an idea of how things are coming on but just to say that bins seem to work, are a quarter of the price of pots and, if covered in plants, are not too bad on the eye. There is one of the "garden" before I started and a couple of views  taken this summer. The "Ben Fhada" can be seen a couple of weeks after it was planted last spring and as it is now.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on December 18, 2017, 08:47:46 AM
Thanks very much, David; they're certainly working wonderfully well for you.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Eremophila maculata 'Aurea'
Post by: John J on January 01, 2018, 01:43:55 PM
It's name may roughly translate as 'Desert lover' and it may come from the hot, arid regions of Australia but our plants seem to have adapted well to the, possibly, less harsh climate of Cyprus. Photo taken this morning.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on January 02, 2018, 10:34:41 AM
You do grow an amazing variety of unusual plants, John, your photos showing how worthwhile they are. Maybe one day you'll find the time to collect all that helpful information into a book?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on January 08, 2018, 10:27:56 AM
In full glory now my Chimonanthus praecox - on sunny days the scent permeates the whole garden.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Coleus?
Post by: John J on January 10, 2018, 03:39:14 PM
Today's photo on the MGS Facebook page is of what I have for years been calling coleus, only to be informed by Alisdair that I now have to learn to refer to them as Plectranthus. Do taxonomists get a sort of perverse pleasure out of causing headaches for old fogies like me? The photos are of some of the Plectranthus that my wife has growing in pots.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on January 11, 2018, 08:55:29 AM
Another winter flowering shrub with a wonderful scent, much sharper and less cloying than the Chimonanthus- Lonicera fragrantissima.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Daisy on January 11, 2018, 10:43:18 AM
Lovely scent. There used to be one near where I worked in England. I used to stop and sniff it for ages when I could.
 I got a few funny looks from passers by.
Daisy
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on January 12, 2018, 08:16:33 AM
My first introduction to this plant was very similar Daisy many years ago in the U.K. Walking through a small park in our local town I was intrigued by the lovely scent all around me and could not ascertain where it was coming from, everything looked quite dead and lifeless. Then I spotted the small white flowers along the bare branches of several untidy looking shrubs- they had been 'pruned' at some time rather haphazardly as often happens in municipal planting. It became  a ' must have' immediately and has featured in my gardens ever since. Luckily it survives the summer heat and drought well here in Italy and never ceases to please. I find that due to its exuberant and often untidy growth it is best placed in an inconspicuous place as the scent carries well although it will stand severe pruning if necessary.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Correa backhouseana
Post by: John J on January 16, 2018, 03:59:18 PM
Our Correa is coming into flower. Even the tiny cutting we stuck into the ground, more out of hope than expectation, has decided to get in on the act.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Lycoris incarnata
Post by: Fermi on February 11, 2018, 02:53:31 PM
Lycoris incarnata is usually the first of the genus to flower in our garden.
Although they do not come from "Mediterranean" type areas they survive here in raised beds which get minimal water during summer. They have multiplied over the years and there are many spikes just coming through the gravel. They do not last as long in flower as nerines but share the same common name of "Spider-lilies", though another name they are given is "Surprise Lilies"! They usually surprise me when they first appear and I often miss the first flowers :-[ The first 2 pics are of the first flower-head to bloom so the flowers are just passing their best. The last pic is of a separate plant freshly open
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on February 12, 2018, 09:05:19 AM
Fantastic, Fermi! Lycorises are as you say surprisingly successful in mediterranean gardens. Both L. aurea and L. radiata have multiplied very well indeed in our hot Greek garden, but you're right about having to catch them at the right moment - as we go there only a few times a year, we've only ever caught L. radiata in flower once in the 15 years since I first planted them!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Rhodophiala bifida
Post by: Fermi on March 11, 2018, 06:38:22 AM
Rhodophiala bifida is a South American amaryllid, related to hippeastrum.
We have a few different forms, an orange-red, a blood-red and a pink.
1, 2) We raised some seedlings by crossing the two red forms in 2013 and the first of those came into flower this week!
3, 4) A pink form also raised from seed (from a SRGC Forumist in Argentina) was also in flower so I've crossed the two to see what results ;D
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Salvia lyrata "Purple Knockout"
Post by: David Dickinson on April 26, 2018, 12:12:42 AM
This is this plant's second year and the flower spikes are much taller than last year.  Not spectacular but it looks nice against other plants around with its  purple/brown foliage.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Maurandya barclayana
Post by: David Dickinson on May 24, 2018, 02:28:07 AM
Since I got seeds of this from Chantal (thanks as always) I have had to grow it afresh from seed as it has been killed each winter. Until this year, that is. This year, with the lowest temperatures I have ever seen in Rome, the plant survived intact! For the first time I have flowers now and don't have to wait until autumn to see them.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on May 24, 2018, 06:36:20 AM
I have managed to overwinter this plant for many years since receiving it from a fellow MGS member living in Italy who's particular passion is climbing plants. With me it has also self seeded quite prolifically some years. I love its delicate habit and foliage and its long flowering season although mine is not yet in flower.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on May 24, 2018, 08:09:35 AM
Presumably it needs pretty regular watering through the summer, David? Very interesting that it survived this last fierce winter for you (which was wet too, wasn't it?).
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on May 24, 2018, 10:04:31 AM
Hi Alisdair and Umbrian

Early winter was mild and not too wet. Just before the extreme cold of February there had been a lot of rain, which probably accounts for why the succulents suffered so much for the second winter running. I do water in the summer but the plant is not such a big drinker as it might appear. I never water anything during the winter months. Spring and autumn in Rome usually have enough rainfall  though October is usually dry. Much drier than September some years.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day- Hemerocallis 'Wild Horses'
Post by: John J on May 29, 2018, 04:57:38 PM
Our 'Wild Horses' is back but does not seem to have been able to drag 'My Reggae Tiger' that was planted close by with it.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Sprekelia formosissima
Post by: David Dickinson on June 18, 2018, 12:01:48 AM
Decided to put this here rather than under "bulbs". Largely because I never have much luck with it after it has flowered and buy a new bulb each year. No matter what I do it usually rots for me. Just got back in time from the UK to see  this flower in its last stages.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day- Hibiscus trionum
Post by: John J on June 25, 2018, 06:24:32 AM
First flower opened this morning on a plant grown from seed supplied by Caroline, my wife says to thank you very much for the kindness.
David, the ones you sent her are growing but are a bit behind Caroline's and not yet ready to flower. Thanks for those too.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 25, 2018, 09:10:27 AM
Hi John

We have had so much rain and cool weather that mine are way behind. I wouldn't expect flowers  for another month yet.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on June 26, 2018, 05:32:09 AM
Lovely foliage making the wait for the beautiful flower well worth while.......
A lovely plant, new to me.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Caroline on June 27, 2018, 12:14:37 AM
Excellent, I'm pleased to see the seeds came up despite the change in hemisphere. :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 27, 2018, 02:31:42 AM
Thanks so much Caroline. This is a plant I will grow year after year. This year, however, I am also growing  Hibiscus sabdariffa. I wonder if the seeds each produce will be  hybrids?
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Commelina erecta
Post by: John J on June 29, 2018, 07:44:29 AM
Competing with the Mediterranean sky for 'blueness'(?). A somewhat straggly ground cover that can become invasive if allowed to roam.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on June 29, 2018, 10:57:17 AM
Certainly can become invasive John but very easy to pull up and keep under control. Last year I had one plant in a pot and this year seedlings have come up in places well away from the parent plant. I can only assume that the seeds are transported by birds as the parent couldn't have spread out of the pot and the seeds are too heavy to be carried by the wind. Judging by the number of seedlings this year the parent plant must have produced hundreds of seeds.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on June 30, 2018, 06:31:17 AM
The 'photo does not really do justice to the colour as so often happens - it is truly a most beautiful and intense blue. Seeds please David!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Ipomoea carnea ssp fistulosa
Post by: John J on July 01, 2018, 07:22:04 AM
The 'Bush Ipomoea' as it doesn't climb like its cousins. In our climate we find it benefits from some shade during the heat of the day and a reasonable amount of water.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on July 01, 2018, 09:01:17 AM
Will get seeds to you Umbrian.  :)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on July 01, 2018, 05:53:04 PM
Thank you!
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Hemerocallis
Post by: John J on July 02, 2018, 10:05:08 AM
We have several Hemerocallis fulva and we recently came across this chap in a local nursery. It was the only one they had and, of course, was unnamed.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on July 06, 2018, 07:12:59 AM
In 2015 on our way back from the MGS AGM on Ischia we called in to see our friend Keay Burton-Pierconti (sadly no longer with us) and she took us to the garden of the son of one of her friends, Marco Mariani. My wife admired some Cosmos that were growing there and he gave her a few seeds. I don't know which it is but below is the flower the first one of this year.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 28, 2018, 01:31:44 PM
Wedelia or as I see I am now supposed to call it Sphagneticola trilobata is a useful ground cover for us. It has a bad reputation in some countries being designated as an invasive weed, however we don't find it that troublesome. Perhaps because our climate is far too dry for it to spread very quickly.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Fermi on September 28, 2018, 02:28:12 PM
Wedelia or as I see I am now supposed to call it Sphagneticola trilobata is a useful ground cover for us. It has a bad reputation in some countries being designated as an invasive weed...
Yes, "Singapore Daisy" is a pest in warmer parts of Australia! My sister lives in Queensland and it was a major weed covering the ground which had to be removed for them to be able to garden!
We were in Singapore last year and saw the gardeners at one of the parks planting it!
cheers
fermi
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on September 28, 2018, 03:06:00 PM
I don't recall ever coming across it during our 3 years in Singapore. How it came by the common name of Singapore daisy when it originates from the Caribbean area, Mexico and Central America is another of those little mysteries.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on October 17, 2018, 06:58:16 AM
Our newly acquired Thunbergia erecta would appear to be settling in well.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on October 17, 2018, 05:51:14 PM
I just now saw the yellow flower you showed us on July 06, 2018. which I believe is Cosmos sulphureus. I collected a few seeds of this a couple of weeks ago and hopefully I may have some flowers in the garden next year. 

I was surprised to see that it's an annual, it grows very quickly and may get quite big; it flowers all summer. I also read that this plant was declared invasive by the United States Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council in 1996, but I have a feeling that almost all plants seem to be declared  invasive somewhere in the US; I don't think they are necessarily invasive everywhere. On the other hand, the flowers of all Cosmos attract birds and butterflies, including the monarch butterfly, which sounds good to me.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Jaborosa integrifolia
Post by: John J on November 01, 2018, 08:59:19 AM
This is a plant that we saw on the MGS AGM pre-tour to Mallorca and is one that I had never come across before. Apparently it spreads as a low-growing ground cover. The owner gave my wife a couple of 'bits' so we'll see how it fares in our harsh climate,  planted in shade and allowed what water we can spare.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Jaborosa integrifolia
Post by: Alisdair on November 01, 2018, 09:46:17 AM
I got a good sniff at the flowers - nice fragrance. (But I think that the tomato-like fruits may be poisonous?)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 01, 2018, 02:58:20 PM
As it's Solanaceae, Alisdair, there's a good chance that you are right. I have planted the 3 'bits' we brought back this morning in a shady spot where we can give them any spare water, so we'll see how they fare.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: JTh on November 01, 2018, 04:21:06 PM
I haven't found anything about toxicity to humans, but I don't think it's wise to try to eat any parts of the plant. According to Wikipedia,  many Jaborosa species contain steroid-derived compounds called withanolides, some of them are phytotoxic, others have antifeedant effects, deterring insects, including the Mediterranean fruit fly, from consuming the plant. If the anti-fruit fly effect could be transferred to olive trees, it would be a great help.

I also read that fruits are rare on this plant. ref. 'The reproductive biology of Jaborosa integrifolia (Solanaceae): Why its fruits are so rare?'https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2FBF00985456#page-1.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 01, 2018, 06:05:50 PM
Very interesting, Jorun, thanks for that. Let's see if we can establish any of these plants first and then take it from there. We were mainly attracted by their flowers, the fact that they spread as a ground cover and, quite frankly, their novelty value.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on November 02, 2018, 07:52:30 AM
I bought one of these several years ago on seeing it for the first time and for much the same reasons as you John. It seemed to settle well and even produced one flower the second year but then disappeared - probably because I failed to give it any on going care having placed it under a large Bay tree where I wanted some attractive ground cover.
Good luck with yours I shall be interested to hear how it fares.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on March 27, 2019, 08:45:33 AM
Update on our 'bits' of this plant from Mallorca. They survived the winter and have begun to put out new growth, some of which looked like they might be flower buds. Then this morning we went out to find one open.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Umbrian on March 28, 2019, 08:48:59 AM
Was looking through some old photos the other day and saw one of this plant in flower making me regret not pampering it a bit more - such a beautiful form and startlingly white. Well done John. Must try again if ever I find it.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Melasphaerulea ramosa
Post by: David Dickinson on April 04, 2019, 11:26:25 AM
Not a spectacular 'Plant of the Day' but if, like me, you enjoy poking around in the garden and getting down onto your hands and knees to appreciate things, this might be for you. I grew a lot of them from seed very easily and then promptly lost them somewhere! They flowered and seeded in their first year and I am just about to sow that seed. In the meantime, what I presumed was going to be Freesia laxa turned out to be this. Either a self seeded plant or one of the lost seedlings from last year.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Charithea on April 04, 2019, 01:22:45 PM
Thank you David for all the lovely rose postings and information and for today's plant of the day.  Very interesting.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on April 08, 2019, 09:53:45 AM
Rhaphiolepis umbellata and R. indica are excellent plants for water-wise gardens, and are beautiful when in full flower in spring.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day - Polianthes tuberosa 'Sensation'
Post by: David Dickinson on October 29, 2019, 10:54:42 AM
I have tried several times with Polianthes but with little success. This year I bought some of the usual bulbs a couple of  the pink form 'Sensation'. The standard white ones have produced copious leaves but no flowers. I had given up hope on the 'Sensation' but they have both started to flower recently. Is it normal for Polianthes to flower this late? I must find out if they need winter protection from cold and/or wet.
Title: Re: Polyanthes
Post by: Alisdair on October 30, 2019, 05:22:48 AM
Lovely, David. They come from a part of Mexico that apparently has dry early winters and wet spring/summer, so have probably been deluded by your warmish (and ? a bit of rain) autumn into thinking it's spring - normally they should flower in spring and early summer, and that's when they need water. Keep free from frost.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: David Dickinson on October 30, 2019, 11:05:20 PM
Thanks Aisdair- very useful information :-)
Title: Re: Plant of the Day Plectranthus verticillatus
Post by: David Dickinson on November 12, 2019, 12:50:45 AM
I am posting this as plant of the day but if truth be known it has got a bit out of hand. Gives me carpets of foliage in shaded areas and doesn't mind drought. When the rains come, it springs into action. Very delicate little flowers. I always keep a couple of cuttings in my small greenhouse over the winter as they say it doesn't like too much cold.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 13, 2019, 08:25:17 AM
The Leucophyllum frutescens are beginning to come into their own and the local bee population seem to appreciate the fact.
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: Alisdair on November 13, 2019, 12:10:47 PM
A lovely photo, John, with those subtle colours
Title: Re: Plant of the Day
Post by: John J on November 16, 2019, 08:49:45 AM
We have 2 bushes of Murraya paniculata and they are both beginning to burst into bloom with their strongly scented flowers.