garden ponderings

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December Flowers in Paradise

There really is a town named Paradise!
In the Sierra Mountain foothills
of Northern California.
We visited friends at their new home in the sunshine.
Manzanita, a native plant, is blooming now.
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Pineapple Sage is in my friend’s garden.
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I saw a number of Camellias in bloom.
Where I live, further north, it will be a few more months
before I see my plant flower.
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We think this is a Coreopsis.
Sure looks like one.
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IMG_1669[1]I know Lavender can rebloom if cut back.
But in December?

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Live and Learn

When I was younger, I thought I knew a lot (sometimes I even thought I knew it all!).  Everyday, as I get older, I realize just how little I know.
Does this make me smart ?  Because I know that I have lots to learn.
Or does this make me stupid, because I am dumb enough to think I know anything?

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Enough rambling, I have a correction to make:
I posted this photo on June 29, 2015, and claimed it was a Monarch butterfly with a lily.  WRONG!  Monarchs are orange and black, what is in the photo is a Swallowtail butterfly dining on an Asiatic Species Lily.
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And a discovery.  Since July 4, 2015 when I posted Weed or Not, a new flower bloomed, and I recognized Coreopsis:
Copy of DSCN3458Copy of DSCN3459
Can you tell that the leaves look the same?
The specimen on the right has significantly more altitude than the shorter flower.
I am waiting for the taller one to bloom before the deer discover it and chew the buds off.

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These cute little flowers almost took over my garden one year.  Then I started pulling them up by their roots and cutting them back severely.  They are now under control and pop up in the most interesting places.  I let them live most of the time, now days.

It is amazing how a specific plant can take over in almost the blink of an eye.  I think it looks good where it is, and it reseeds freely – such a nice attribute in an almost empty flower bed.  From now on, I am on the lookout for a plant that seems too good to be true.  Which reminds me of a great old saying:  ‘if something seems too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true’.

Do not think I am totally disparaging this annual flower, I like many of its positive attributes.  Though I have learned from experience to not look the other way at a plant that seems to have it all.  As a mid-summer flower, the color blends in well with other blossoms here, and complements the greenery of spent flowering plants.