What’s blooming for this Green Thumb Sunday

As I looked around my garden today, I was surprised by the number of flowers still in bloom. Many of them survived the -7 celsius frost, including all the blooms pictured here.

While most of the Amaranthus plants froze, I have not pulled them out of the garden just yet. The long, rope-like flowers, with the dead foliage, look interesting, in a freakish sort of way.

A few Amaranthus survived miraculously (pictured above) and have continued to grow during the odd, warm day we’ve had since the frost.

The best treat of all today was discovering the only bloom of the Abyssinian Lily (Acidanthera bicolor murielae).

The foliage beneath this bloom had frozen and so I didn’t think there was any chance of a flower emerging (pictured at right). It proved me wrong. The rest of the bulbs, of which there were about 20, have been pulled because the foliage was dead and without buds.

I’m amazed that the Gazanias continue to bloom as if they weren’t touched in the least by frost.

And then there are the Bluebells (Mertensia maritima, I think), having re-bloomed again this fall. They also sailed through the freezing temperatures without any ill effect.

I have also been amazed at how long the Sea Hollies (one pictured at left) have continued to bloom. They will look wonderful all winter long.

Since finishing the garage wall, I have been feeling at loose ends. I decided to paint some of the clay flowerpots I had stored in the garage. They are lining both the dining and living rooms, but so far, my son hasn’t complained. When I have stenciled some of the pots, I will some pictures of them.

36 thoughts on “What’s blooming for this Green Thumb Sunday

  1. farmingfriends says:

    Your Gazania is beautiful. I love the shape of the petals. Sara from farmingfriends

  2. Bert says:

    This morning I was whining about the temperature here dropping to plus 7 Celcius. After reading your article, I am no longer whining. Instead I am giving thanks that I live here (S-W Ontario) instead of Saskatchewan. With your magnificent garage wall, you’ll always have a bit of summer.

  3. Genie says:

    That lily is stunning! What a great surprise for you. And everything else is beautiful, too. You’ve got some serious post-frost blooming going on!

  4. No Rain says:

    Very unusual Gazanias. I’ve not seen any shaped like that. The color is beautiful. Also, the Amaranthus is something new. Are the flowers dried for arrangements? It seems like I’ve seen something like this in arrangements, either dried or fresh–can’t remember.Aiyana

  5. Cris Bolbosa says:

    Hello Kate, You can read my blog in english. It is not a very good translation, but it gives a idea of what I wrote. In the right side, at the top of the blog, its a link to a translation page. If you clik there, it translates all. Try it and tell me what about.Your Acidanthera is very beatiful. This year my Acidantheras don’t want to flower. Maybe they get flower later. The weather is so instable, that the plants feel that.Cris

  6. chigiy at Gardeners Anonymous says:

    There is still a lot going on in your yard. The gazanias are very cool. Enjoy the weather.We are getting an extremely early rain here.I wont complain because we need it and the air temp is in the high 60’s.

  7. teeni says:

    Wow. Your flower garden is so interesting that I forgot where you were and started thinking you lived someplace more tropical! LOL. Sad about the frost. Your amaranthus are very pretty, as well as the Gazania and the lily. It’s sad to see them pass! Summer is really over. Well, I just wanted to stop by and see what you were up to. I’m glad I did as I was treated to this beautiful array of garden flowers. 😉

  8. Pam/Digging says:

    Your garden looks great post-freeze. I still can’t quite believe that you’ve had a freeze already though. :-)I especially love the photo of the Abyssinian lily. And your post reminds me that I need to plant some sea hollies one of these days.

  9. jodi says:

    Aren’t the peacock glads (Acidanthera) annoying? I got a couple to bloom one year but haven’t bothered since–they need more heat than I can give them. Kate, I’m fascinated by the fact that you’ve got what appears to be sea lungwort/sea bluebells (Mertensia maritima) rather than Virginia bluebells (M virginica) in your garden. I’m also excited by this because I always thought sea lungwort needed the salt beach to grow. This is tempting me to try planting it in what’s becoming my gravel/alpine garden. The flowers are wonderful, but that glaucous foliage is what really gets to me!

  10. teeni says:

    I’ve tagged you for a meme. Come on over for details. I hope you don’t mind and can meet the challenge.

  11. kris says:

    Hi Kate – isn’t it a wonderful surprise to see things still blooming this time of year? I love it!The Abyssinian Lily is beautiful – I’ve never seen this before. And I love the amaranthus and bluebells – how fun that they escaped the frost!Since seeing your wall, I’m looking around for things I could stencil – I’ll let you know if I decide to do something!!

  12. Alyssa says:

    I’m jealous that you have so many different things blooming! It is sometimes surprising how plants will defy the cold and keep plugging away. I had no idea that Bluebells will rebloom. I will have to go out and check mine. Can’t wait to see your pots.

  13. Pam says:

    I am quite taken with a Gazania, I have never seen one and it is an extraordinary flower. As always, your garden delights.

  14. gracia says:

    Amaranthus… I’ve always loved that name. Possibly even more than the plant itself.take care, grache

  15. Layanee says:

    Kate: First, I love your wall and ‘gardening outfit with new hair’! I hope no one ever takes my picture in my gardening outfit…maybe I need a new gardening outfit! Anyway, the wall is lovely! Also, great photos and that reminds me I must grow some amaranth next year!

  16. Ki says:

    Great to know which plants can take a frost and keep blooming. Our Acidantheras did miserably this year but we do have a few blooming. Good to know the flowers were untouched by the frost. Maybe they’ll do better later this fall. I’m also happy to know the Gazanias are fairly frost hardy.

  17. Mary says:

    Your flowers are tough! Beautiful, too.Seems like you are the type of person who enjoys projects and staying busy. The garage wall was a big project and now that it’s done, you need another! Can’t wait to see the stenciled pots!

  18. Laura says:

    wow, i have never seen so many plants in one place that are completely new and amazing!! i have never laid eyes on any of those things except the amaranthus. really spetacular. the garage turned out beautiful!! i would never have the patience for all that wonderful detail. can’t wait for more!

  19. Abby Creek Art says:

    That gazania is really pretty! Now a picture of Lytton with that in his mouth would be too perfect!!

  20. Connie says:

    Things are looking good there, post frost! I grew an Amaranthus like yours two summers ago for a friend’s wedding bouquet….they were dramatic and beautiful!

  21. Catherine says:

    I love sea hollies…For some reason I have never grown them in my garden….Your garage wall that you stenciled in earlier post is Beautiful…what a great idea!!Catherine

  22. Yolanda Elizabet says:

    You already had temperatures of -7 C? It’s amazing and wonderful to see how much in your garden has survived this frost. Miracles do happen, don’t you think? ;-)Love those bluebells, what wonderful foliage! This year none of my Abyssinian lilies flowered. Such a shame and they have gorgeous flowers with a wonderful scent. Oh well, there is always next year.

  23. Ragged Roses says:

    Your plants are doing remarkably well, looking at the photos you would imagine that it was midsummer! They must be very well cared forKimx

  24. Gina says:

    hi kate! i love your sea holly! i planted some late this season but it never bloomed. maybe next year!

  25. Clare says:

    Hi Kate! I am amazed the delicate little Sea Hollies survived the frost. And your photo of the Gazanias took my breath away — it’s like a brilliant exploding star!! All your photos are such a treat. Our weather got a bit cool and rainy last week and then totally warmed up again yesterday — but I’m starting to see autumn colors. I hope your week is going great! We’re taking the Moose to the beach today. Say a big ‘hi’ to Lytton!!:)

  26. nikkipolani says:

    Oh, how I miss my acidanthera 😦 I’m surprised it is doing well for you – I’d always thought (quite probably incorrectly) that they were a warm climate bulb. Hope you have more lovely surprises despite the frost!

  27. Kylee says:

    My acidanthera disappointed me this year, too. I have lots and lots of foliage and not one single bloom! And they looked (and smelled) so wonderful last year! Maybe next year…I have found that gazanias will take a frost and keep going for quite awhile. Mine were still green last December!

  28. Iowa Gardening Woman says:

    Nice shots, I have never know bluebells to bloom again in the fall, do they do that for you every year? What a treat that would be, I love bluebells. Is the Abyssinian Lily scented? It looks like what I have known as hardy gladiola, wonder if it is the same plant?

  29. Robin's Nesting Place says:

    I really like the gazanias, so pretty. I’m ready for cooler weather but not for frosts yet. I’m glad some of your plants have survived it.

  30. kate says:

    Verobirdie – I’m glad you stopped by and it’s great you are signed up for GTS!Sara – The Gazania has put on a non-stop blooming show for months now and shows no sign of stopping, even though last night’s frost. Bert – Yes, you are lucky to live in ON, rather than SK. Our summers are much shorter – I noticed that when I moved back from Ottawa and couldn’t believe how long it took before it was safe to plant. Genie – I like these lilies. Most years, I plant them earlier and get some blooms before frost. This year, I got working on the pond and didn’t get them in till the end of June. It surprises me to see the plants that continue to bloom even though they’ve been hit by frost for a few nights now. Aiyana – I love when the Gazanias show like this – maybe it’s the frost that has affected them. I don’t think so though because most of the other Gazanias are behaving as they usually do. I have taken some of the long ropes of the Amaranthus and am drying them. I’m not sure how they’ll do. Cris – I got the translation to work thankfully so knew what you were writing about. I sometimes wonder if the Acideranthas get hit by a virus that keeps them from opening. I had a poor crop of them last year. Hopefully yours will bloom soon! Chigiy – Ah, how I wish I lived there at this time of year. You don’t have to worry about frost and schlepping plants in at night. Pam – I wish we hadn’t had any frost, but it’s pretty inevitable here. Sometimes it happens in mid-August, which is truly frustrating. Sea Hollies are wonderful plants. I love them – they are so hardy. The frost doesn’t seem to be bothering them at all. Jodi – It was from reading your blog that I figured my bluebells must be of the Maritima variety. I’ve never had them rebloom before though. They seem to thrive here. That is especially true of this summer. I love the foliage too … it looks quite lovely peeking out from a cover of yellow- and rust-coloured leaves. Teeni – I so wish I did live someplace where I could garden for longer, but then I’d probably do little else but garden. I’ll try and meet your challenge. My desktop has – guess what?? – a flower on it. Kris – It is a wonderful surprise to have flowers still blooming. I am intrigued by how some Amaranthus died off after the frost while others keep right on thriving. Once you start looking, you’ll find all sorts of possibilities for stenciling … It’s kind of addicting. Alyssa – I have never had a bluebell, in all the years I’ve been growing them, rebloom. I couldn’t believe it when I first saw them in bud. They are impervious to the frost too. Pam – Gazanias are wonderful and easy-to-grow flowers. Their colours are interesting … they come in more hues now than they did before – at least here. Gracia – How true – the name is wonderful … Layanee – This was my cleanest gardening outfit. My jean overalls are streaked with dirt and paint and the ends are frayed. There is a lot of paint on these ones too, but it just doesn’t show in the pictures. Regina – Thank you – I am loving the wall, especially when I’m sitting outside shivering and feeling winter on its way!Ki – Maybe the batch of Aciderantha bulbs weren’t great, because it sounds as most people here have had trouble getting them to bloom. I am amazed at the toughness of the Gazania … and also the Kenilworth Ivy. It is still alive and going strong. Mary – Flowers have to be pretty tough to survive here. We are in a zone 3 unfortunately, because it does limit what we can grow. That’s why my house is filled with plants all winter long and then go out in the spring. I like having lots of projects on the go especially as winter sets in. Usually during summer, I get going in the garden and don’t do much besides that. This year, I realised that I needed a good project and now I’m on a roll!Laura – Sometimes I wondered while stenciling, if I was becoming too obsessive about it. I found it very relaxing and I could have spent more time on it if the garage was a bit longer. I’m now eyeing the door into the garage …Linda – I wonder if I could get Lytton to hold a Gazania in his mouth. Maybe if I bribe him with a treat, he’ll go for it. I’ll try it and see what happens!Connie – I think it’s great that you used Amaranthus in a wedding bouquet. They would look stunning. I love those long and colourful tassels. Catherine – Sea Hollies are a wonderful addition to the garden – They add some interesting texture and are so easy to grow. The garage wall is now varnished and I am missing my stenciling of it.Yolanda Elizabet – We had another frost last night, but it was milder than the one last week. It is miraculous that some plants seem immune to the frost, including the Bluebells. I wonder what it is that causes the Aciderantha to send out foliage, but no blooms. Kim – Since yesterday, the leaves have been falling rapidly and now most of the flowers are covered. It definitely looks like fall now!Gina – Once the Sea Hollies get established, they’ll spread and put on a good show every year.Clare – I love these Gazania. The colours have been incredible ranging from oranges, to pinks, purples and white. The Sea Hollies are tough, I’m realising. They aren’t bothered by the frost at all! Give Moose a big hug for me. Lytton says hi!Nikkipolani – Each spring, I either buy new bulbs or plant ones that I lifted the autumn before. I wish I could just leave them in the ground, as you probably can!Kylee – As I mentioned to Ki, maybe we had bad batches of Aciderantha this year. Mine also put up great foliage but this was the only one that bloomed! I will definitely grow Gazanias again next year – it is amazing how they can withstand frost.The Abyssinian Lily has a lovely scent … one year I had planted several together and it was a treat to walk by them and breathe them in. Iowa Gardening Woman – I didn’t know that the Bluebells re-bloomed either. I think it is this variety that does, although this is the first time it has happened for mine. I’m not sure if the Abyssinian Lily is also a hardy gladiolus, but it might be. Jodi mentioned they were Peacock Gladioli in her above comment. Robin – I don’t mind the cooler weather, but I really don’t like frost and what is coming … snow and freezing temperatures that will make this time of year seem positively balmy!

  31. Andrea's Garden says:

    You’ve already had frost and here we are dreading all the rain right now. Still a lot of my plants on the patio are outdoors, but will have to go indoors soon into the basement and await the next spring time. Gazanias are beautiful, don’t believe I have ever seen one before. Thanks for sharing again! Andrea

  32. blueblue says:

    Fancy turning something as ordinary as a garage wall into something so extraordinary. That is amazing.And now you will have spring in the midst of your winter as you dream up garden projects for the new year.

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