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Scarlet Nantes Carrots

Carrots originated over 5,000 years ago in present day Afghanistan. Eventually, carrots were divided into 2 categories: atrorubens and sativus. Atrobuens arose from the east and had yellow to purple roots while sativus carrots had orange, yellow, and sometimes white roots. There are 4 major types of carrots: Danvers, Nantes, Imperator, and Chantenay. This article focuses on Nantes carrots. What …

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Armeria maritima ‘Ballerina Lilic’

New for 2019 in our Sunnyvale garden: Armeria ‘Ballerina Lilac’, commonly called thrift or sea pink, is a compact, low-growing plant which forms a dense, mounded tuft of stiff, linear, grass-like, dark green leaves (to 4″ tall). Tufts will spread slowly to 8-12″ wide. Tiny, purple flowers bloom in mid spring in globular clusters (3/4-1″ wide) atop slender, naked stalks …

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Sedum clavatum

Sedum clavatum is an attractive succulent in the Pachysedum group that grows with stout creeping stems terminating in 4 inch wide rosettes of glaucus blue-green succulent leaves and has a compact inflorescence of many pink bell-shaped flowers in mid to late spring (April – May in Sunnyvale) to early summer that take a pink hue with age. The stems lose …

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Mexican Oregano

Mexican Oregano’s taste is more citrusy than Mediterrean oregano, which has mint notes; with subtle hints of lime that really enhance the flavor of chiles and paprikas. It is frequently called for in chili powders, chili con carne, and various spicy/hot dishes, especially the traditional Mexican and Central American moles and rojos. Mexican Oregano is also outstanding in flavoring beans, …

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April in Our Sunnyvale Garden – 2019

Spring has totally sprung! Cold-season vegetables: Snow peas planted in January had lots of pods in March and April. Kale was large enough to harvest and make kale chips. Carrots and beets are still growing. Tomatoes: We cut back this year and only started 48 tomato seedlings in February. I transplanted them to half-gallon pots in March. and transplanted them …

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March in Our Sunnyvale Garden – 2019

Our Sunnyvale garden in March 2019 was filled with flowers.Spring blossoms on the plum, apricot, and orange trees. Spring bulbs like Crocus, Freesias, Grape-Hyacinth, Hyacinth, Tulips, Dutch Iris, and Spanish Bluebell. Spring vegetables like snowpeas and kale. Excellent cool-season annuals with Violas and Pansies. Rainy-season perennials like Cyclamen, India Hawthorne, Lewisia, Verbinium, Geranium, Rosemary and Lavender. Lots of foliage on …

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Dutch Iris

In our Sunnyvale garden, over the years, we have planted Dutch iris in many locations, both in the ground and in containers. The flowers are spectacular and another sign that spring has arrived. The bulbs naturalize so you can reliably anticipate them every spring. The Dutch iris bulb is about 4 inches in diameter and the plant can reach a …

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Spanish Bluebell

Spanish Bluebell is a new flower to our Sunnyvale garden in 2019. We grow it in pots from 6 to 12 inches deep. Hyacinthoides hispanica syn. Endymion hispanicus, syn. Scilla hispanica is the tallest and broadest leaved species with unscented bell shaped flowers scattered along the stem. It is native to Spain and Portugal and to northwest Africa and is often referred to as …

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Ornamental Kale

Ornamental kale plants can make a wonderful red, pink, purple, or white show in the cool season garden, with very minimal care. Because the winter of 2018/2019 in Sunnyvale was unusually cool and wet, the ornamental kale we planted in November did great. Only now, in early March, is it flowering. Ornamental kale plants (Brassica oleracea) and their cousin, the …

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Crocus vernus

This variety is one of the familiar, and welcome, giant spring Crocus, which are colorful companions for early Daffodils. They are terrific for bedding, rock gardens, shrub borders, and naturalizing in grass. Reserve a few bulbs to pot up and force, and you will soon be the bearer of sweet little gifts that are inexpensive yet rich with the promise …

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