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Armeria maritima

Another first in 2017 for our Sunnyvale garden: Sea pink. Armeria maritima, 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, pink to white flowers bloom in mid spring in globular clusters (3/4-1″ wide) …

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Lotus Berthelotti – ‘Red Embers’

The stunning, brightly colored unusually shaped blooms of the evergreen trailing plant Lotus berthelotii, commonly called parrot’s beak, brings a tropical feel to your garden or landscape. Native to the Canary and Cape Verde Islands off the west coast of Africa, Parrot’s beak is a sun-loving perennial that can be grown as an annual in areas below U.S. Department of …

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Pickwick Crocus

Is this Pickwick Crocus white with delicate lilac-blue stripes, or lilac with white stripes? In pursuit of the answer, it’s fun to force a pot and examine the flowers closely. Plant between clumps of Jeanne d’Arc and Flower Record for a lovely composition in white and purple. Heirloom, 1925. This variety is one of the familiar, and welcome, giant spring …

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Wisteria 2017

After 5 years, our Wisteria is finally flowering! Wisteria is a beautiful spring vine. Because of my visits to the California Spanish missions, I cannot think of Wisteria without thinking of California. I planted my wisteria in probably the worst spot for it in our Sunnyvale garden: a spot nestled in an east-facing corner that only gets a few hours …

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Hyacinth – Dutch

We grow hyacinth in our Sunnyvale garden most years. Attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds. Flowers are fragrant. This plant is suitable for growing indoors.  The Dutch Hyacinth does best if planted new every year. Hyacinth blooms the first week in March, after the crocus have finished blooming, and right before the tulips start blooming. In 2019 we planted Deep …

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Phacelia californica

Phacelia californica (California scorpionweed) is a central California native. This herbaceous perennial grows to 1-2 feet tall.  Plant in rock gardens or on a slope with good drainage. The common name is because the flowers unfurling from the stalk look like a scorpion’s tail. Less imaginative explanation: it is similar to ferns. The flowers provide an important nectar source for …

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Persian Fritillary

Spikes of deep maroon bells create an intriguing focal point in the spring garden. The tall stems are clothed with gray-green leaves, which are attractive in their own right. The Persian fritillary usually requires a season or two to establish itself. There are about 100 to 130 species of bulbous plants in the family Liliaceae, native to temperate regions of …

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First Freesia of 2017

Freesia is a fragrant pretty spring corm that naturalizes so it comes back year after year. I plant them at the bases of the fruit trees and in containers to provide some of the first blooms and scents of spring.

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This Sunnyvale Garden – February 2017

We had a very wet February in our Sunnyvale garden. But we still had a lot of flowers: Pea-shrub, orinthogalum, several types of crocus, daffodils, armeria, plum, apricot, flowering plum, viola, cyclamen, english daisy, yarrow, lavendar. On the vegetable side: cilantro, tomatoes, beet, garlic, rhubarb, chile, basil. Lots of spring growth: swartzkopf, mulberry, figs, milkweed, foxglove, caesurium, bleeding-heart, lily-of-the-valley, verbascum, …

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Empanadas

Whether you call them empanadas or turnovers or cornish pasties, these little pastries are delicious. You make the dough and add all types of fillings. Empanada Dough can be made quickly in the food processor to use immediately or store for later meals. You are going to love making your own empanadas with fresh ingredients. They are perfect when you …

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