GardenWeek Virtual Visits October 4, 2000

Editor's Journal: Stonecrop

It is definitely fall--suddenly the trees are putting on a great show. But there was definitely a killing frost at Stonecrop late last week--two nights in a row with a low of 28 degrees and although much of summer continues, much of summer is also over--many of the Cannas, Hedychiums, the Colocasia and other tender plants in the flower garden have been partially frosted. The afternoon started grey but bright and breezy and then the sky cleared and it became a perfect fall day. There is a lot still happening in the Flower Garden and that marvelous "invention"--the Pit House-- is starting up for the season. Continue.

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Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit plants indicated by AGM.

In the Rainbow Bed, Salvia splendens 'Van-Houttei' (AGM) and Nicotiana x sanderae 'Crimson King' are a perfect color match.
Nicotiana and Salvia
Nicotiana 'Stonecrop Mauve'
Originated here at Stonecrop around 1990, this unusually colored Nicotiana cultivar was protected from last week's frost and continues to bloom. It is thought to be a cross of N. langsdorfii (AGM) and N. 'Crimson King' shown on the left--and it always comes true from seed.
A tender perennial from South Africa, this member of the Lamiaceae family has whorls of tubular orange flowers that look like the crow's nest on the mast of a ship.
Leonotis leonurus
Leonotis leonurus
A close-up of the festive orange flowers now in full bloom as winter approaches.
This Miscanthus cultivar is displaying its distinctive fall foliage color. Note that the summer was not quite long enough for its neighbor, Brillantaisia subgularica, to bloom, so it has been potted and moved to the Conservatory where hopefully we may be able to finally see it in flower.
Miscanthus sinensis var. purpurascens
Salvia leucantha
This fuzzy Mexican Salvia with light purple tubes emerging from dark purple buds is finally blooming.
AGM
Shown blooming on August 15, this Solanum is now displaying its small golden fruits.
Solanum atropurpureum
Gymnaster savetieri
The small flowers of this Japanese Aster relative seem to keep changing color as the light changes. This Gymnaster was purchased from Niche Nursery in 1997 and is a favorite of Caroline Burgess.
Shown in flower and with young seed pods on August 30, the seed pods are now getting quite large.
Asclepias physocarpa
Cyclamen hederifolium
Moving to the Pit House, this is one of several species of Cyclamen now blooming.
AGM
Another unusual Oxalis, this African species has delicate pale lavender flowers on dark red stems with narrow wispy green leaves.
Oxalis sp.
Narcissus serotinus
The first Narcissus of the season to bloom, this species, native to the Mediterranean region, has small fragrant flowers.
And the last plant of the Pit House to be shown this week, this Nerine, although not quite in bloom, is quite striking in bud. The genus is named after the water nymph, Nerine.
Nerine humilis
Cuphea cyanea
Shown blooming under glass on April 11, this very festively colored Cuphea from Mexico never made it outside for the summer and is continuing to put on quite a show under glass.
Stonecrop--The Pond, Woodlands, and Himlayan Slope

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