Saturday, October 3, 2009

Mandevilla x 'Ruby Star' and other plants on the back deck

Someday this space will no doubt be an enclosed sunroom; whether we do it or those who follow? Who knows. Now it's a great place to grow sunny annuals, tropicals, or to summer out orchids.

This morning was one of those days that make all the work worthwhile. It wasn't raining which was good. It had rained .25 inches...also good. Sixty degrees F seemed like a perfect temperature and the early morning sun inflamed flowers and refracted through the remnants of rain. A good morning.

Red Mandevillas are suddenly available everywhere. There are a handful of selections and I'm not qualified to judge which is best; I know that this one is 'Ruby Star'. It came up from Florida this past April and has covered a 4 foot trellis and made forays into an adjacent Crape Myrtle. At this point I'll probably just let it grow.

I keep two geraniums over the winter, these two. I don't know the names of either one but they're obviously beautiful. I know there's a strain of thought that says the old fashioned scarlet ones are the only Geraniums to grow, but I like these. The pink pots once held Knockout roses that went into one of Karen and the boy's landscape jobs. They help tie the deck to the multitudes of pink flamingos in the garden. That's either good or bad? The mermaid, a gift from my sister, is cast iron and was not posed for this picture. That's where she lives summer and winter. I have a smaller flatter version that can open bottles; she was useful last night at Octoberfest festivities. I have it on good authority that there's also a 5 foot version that must be quite weighty.

Sansevieria grandis and some Philodendron cultivar live happily on the back rail. They are shaded by a large market umbrella and so never get any direct sunlight. The Sansevieria, of course, requires almost no care and not much water. The Philodendron, which has been around for 15 years or so, gets top-dressed with the discarded orchid mix from culled orchids. That sounds cruel, but orchids accumulate and when their numbers get too high, the level of care they get plummets and they all suffer. Once in a while one or two have to go.

No comments: