Saturday, August 1, 2015

Waking up in winter

Yawn ... stretch ... no Garden Amateur posts since June 18? Yes, we've been taking a little midwinter break, but this morning, August 1, is such a mild, sweet morning that all Sydney gardeners know spring is not far away. So it's a good time to wake up the sleeping blogger.

Out on our streets the magnolias are bursting out in pinky purples, the wattles are dripping with golden bling, and here in our little backyard there's colour everywhere you look. On with the show ...

Several of our succulents are colouring up, and this
Kalanchoe 'Copper Spoons' is flushed all over with coppery
new growth on a shrub about 70cm tall. So classy.

Bromeliads such as this Vriesia are the ideal plants for non
gardeners to grow in Sydney. Just shove them in semi shade,
pretty well ignore them, and they will then do this in winter.

Our "groundcover" Cootamundra wattle in our
front garden is at its colourful fuzziest right now.

Growing poppies for Pammy in winter has become a tradition
that I hope will last forever.

Our pot of Aeonioum 'Schwartzkopf' offcuts
that we are striking seem to have taken.

Crassula 'Campfire' is a succulent which
really colours up in winter. It's green when
the weather is warmer, but red for just a
month or two in midwinter.

Same deal with the trailing hanging basket
succulent, Senecio jacobensii. It's green in
summer but wears purple robes to ward off
the winter chills.

Finally, even our silvers are shining right now. The Spanish
moss which Pammy looks after, draped from the bare and
otherwise scrappy looking branches of our Grevillea 'Peaches
and Cream', always look superb in the early morning sun.

All the cliches of the seasons, of winter's bareness especially, just don't apply here in Sydney. And that's how I love it.


Shivangni said...

Lovely post as usual. Feel envious (also as usual) ! But we are also moving towards winter when Delhi indulges in lots of blooms starting with chrysanthemums (most popular ) and ending with petunias which sometimes continue blooming till monsoon hits us.

one question, have you planted your bromeliad in ground? I had a collection of a few in pots, which slowly died. I'm left with a small one which is also struggling, so would it be better to put it in ground under a tree?

Warm Regards

Jamie said...

Hi Shivangni
Thanks for your kind comments (as usual!).

All the bromeliads are in pots, in a very coarse mixture which is like the stuff they grow orchids in. In the wild, bromeliads don't grow in the ground, they cling to trees (such as in the spots where branches meet trunks). They like semi-shade or filtered light, and not too much water in the cooler months. They also don't need much fertiliser. The fallen leaves which collect in their cups and break down over time seem to provide all the nutrients they need.