Year-round Color - Notes


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Year-round Color - Notes

  1. 1. Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden Year-round Color with CA Native Plants C.M. Vadheim and T. Drake CSUDH & Madrona Marsh Preserve Madrona Marsh Preserve Gardening with Western L.A. County Native Plants May 1 & 4, 2010 Project SOUND - 2010 © Project SOUND © Project SOUND © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 1
  2. 2. Gardening is like enjoying wine… © Project SOUND © Project SOUNDYou start out with an unsophisticated palette….. © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 2
  3. 3. The subtle colors of the native plant cycle  Restraint (sophistication; appropriate; restful; ‘earth- friendly’)  Appreciation for the cycle of seasons and our connection to them  Expressing our S. CA natural heritage – our unique ‘look’ that others so covet  Relieving the pressure of the ‘Disneyland Gardens’ syndrome (a mass of perfect, bright blooms 12 months out of the year) © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Trick # 1: Choose a workable color scheme – one you like  Helps limit your plant choices  Makes the garden look like it has a plan  Allows you to choose sophisticated combinations  If you desire year- round color, you’ll need to choose a scheme that is feasible © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 3
  4. 4. Let’s choose our state colors, and work from there Trick # 2: Plant an evergreen background  The combination of blue and gold as official colors in California  Will look good/green all year long were first used by the University – and may also provide colorful of California, Berkeley in 1875. flowers or fruits  Blue represented the sky and gold  Provides a backdrop for the real the color of the precious metal found by forty-niners in the show – whatever you decide to states hills. plant in front of it  The Secretary of State began  Can be one or several species – using blue and gold ribbons on but all should be medium to dark official documents as early as green for best effect 1913.  Possible choices:  In 1951, the State Legislature  Toyon passed legislation makign blue &  Coffeeberry or Redberry – gold the official state colors. Rhamnus  CercocarpusThis color scheme also has the advantage that there are lots  Even non-native plantsof native plants with yellow & blue flowers © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Remember: fruits/berries and leaves can If you don’t like the idea of a living backdrop, be an excellent source of fall color then use a dark or colorful wall/fence Remember, the goal is to ‘accent’Coffeeberry – Frangula (Rhamnus) californica Holly-leaf Cherry – Prunus illicifolia the colors of your plants © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 4
  5. 5. Trick # 3 : use hardscape for year-round One you have a backdrop, you’re ready to color (even without plants) add some colorful shrubs © Project SOUND © Project SOUNDSome of our longest-flowering shrubs and CA Bush Sunflower – Encelia californicaperennials are in the sunflower family… so we decide to use yellow as our primary color © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 5
  6. 6. Trick # 4 : extend the bloom season of * San Diego Sunflower – Viguiera laciniata some shrubs with judicious summer water  Choose only plants that can take summer water (Zone 2 to 3)  Water only as much as needed – over watering leads to disease, shortened lifePlants from riparian and  Most S. CA native plantsSonoran Desert need a dormancy period incommunities naturally late summer/fall – but somegrow in late summer/ fall still bloom then– can be used for fallcolor © Project SOUND © Project SOUND San Diego Sunflower – like Encelia but * San Diego Sunflower – Viguiera laciniata more delicate looking  Local endemic: San Diego Co. south to  Size: Baja/Sonora  1-3 ft tall  Arid Diegan Sage Scrub is typically the  1-3 ft wide preferred habitat of this species  Growth form:  Shrubby slopes at lower elevations  Sub-shrub with woody base  Many herbaceous stems – mounded form  Evergreen to semi-deciduous  Foliage:,1962,1963  Medium green  Leaves hairy & resinous;Some believe this species should coarsely toothed & fairlybe Bahiopsis laciniata narrow © 2005 Aaron Schusteff © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 6
  7. 7. Flowers are pure gold Sunflowers are easy to  Blooms: propagate from seed  May bloom year-round with a little water  Main bloom usually Jan-  Use fresh seed June  Flowers:  Most need no special  Typical sunflower head, but treatment for good delicate looking – to 1” germination across  Color: bright golden yellow  Plant in late winter – ray & disk flowers like the rainwater  Showy and cheery  Seeds:  Seedlings are often  Typical for sunflowers – quite hardy eaten by birds & animals © 2005 Aaron Schusteff © Project SOUND © Project SOUNDSan Diego Sunflower San Diego Sunflower  Soils: is easy to grow  Texture: just about any – – lots of spring color sandy to clay  pH: any local  As an accent shrub – adds  Light: early color and keeps on  Full sun to part shade – blooming probably best in full sun near the coast  Great on slopes and hillsides – soil stabilization  Water:  Winter: adequate – but no  Fine with native grasses, standing water shrubs, annual wildflowers –  Summer: occasional to choose nice color contrasts regular water will keep it looking nice (Zone 2 to 3) –  Great addition to the good for transition areas. habitat garden – attracts butterflies, other insects & birds  Fertilizer: none; likes poor soils Bramble Green Hairstreak (Callophyrs© 2005 Aaron Schusteff © Project SOUND dumetorum) © Project SOUND 7
  8. 8. Viguiera parishii – a desert species Trick # 5: use ‘season extenders’ – shrubs with a long blooming season  Give a sense of continuity through the seasons  Get a lot of bang for your buck - and many are long-lived  Can be used as the ‘backbone’ of your color plan – use other  Full sun plants as accents  Very well-drained soils  Are often readily available in  Low water (Zone 1-2) native plant nurseries/sales – they know what people want! © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Trick # 6: use light/bright colors to add ‘light’ * Canyon Sunflower – Venegasia carpesioides to dark areas – use light/dark contrast  Adds a cheerful note in winter & a cool note in summer  A little color goes a long way in dark areas of the garden © 2002 Lynn Watson © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 8
  9. 9. * Canyon Sunflower – Venegasia carpesioides Canyon Sunflower is like a daintier, perennial version  The single species of its genus of the Annual Sunflower  Size:  Found in Southwestern CA from central Ca to  3-5 ft tall Baja  3-6 ft wide  Locally in the Santa Monica, San Gabriel Mtns.  Shaded canyons, moist wooded slopes &  Growth form: stream banks in southern oak woodland,  Sub-shrub with a woody base chaparral and coastal sage scrub below 3000  Shape mounded to irregular – think ‘chrysanthemum-like’  Drought deciduous  Foliage:  Bright to medium green – very woodsy looking  Leaves shaped like annual sunflower  Some think it has a disagreeable odor © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Flowers will light up Canyon Sunflower  Soils:  Texture: very adaptable – clay is the garden likes shade & water fine  pH: any local  Blooms:  Light:  Long bloom period – at least  Likes some shade altho’ OK in full most of spring sun  Usually from Mar/Apr to June,  Excellent choice for high shade then again in cooler fall under tree, N side of structures  Flowers:  Water:  Lovely yellow sunflower heads  Winter: adequate  Large – ‘dahlia-like’ – 2” across  Summer: looks best with some  Color looks spectacular against water (Zone 2 to 2-3) but quite bright green foliage or dark drought tolerant background  Attract many pollinators  Fertilizer: fine with an organic mulch  Seeds: attract seed-eaters  Other: prune back hard (like Encelia)© 2004 Dr. Daniel L. Geiger © Project SOUND © 2010 Anna Bennett after fall bloom period) © Project SOUND 9
  10. 10. Canyon Sunflower solves Trick # 7 : use white foliage to give the some garden problems illusion of color in any season  One of our best choices for showy flowers in shady places – consider it for any dark area  Good choice for bank/slope stabilization - excellent for shady ‘creek banks’ – natural or man-made  Great for rain gardens  ? Near the vegetable garden  Great with Melic Grass & shade-loving annuals like Chinese Houses, Baby Blue- eyes © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Trick # 8 : Use fall-blooming shrubs/perennials for a boost of color in Sept-Oct  For yellow/white flowers consider:  Goldenbushes  Mock Heather  Rabbitbush  Coyote Bush  Goldenrods  Mulefat  For orange/red  CA Fuschia – several different colors  Buckwheat (seed heads) Viguiera laciniata, Diplacus puniceus, Diplacus aurantiacus, Encelia farinosa © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 10
  11. 11. Coast Goldenbush – Isocoma menziesii Two Coastal Goldenbushes Coastal Goldenbush – Isocoma menziesii Sawtooth Goldenbush – Hazardia squarrosa  Similar growth habit and flowers; fall blooming (Aug-Oct)  Coast Goldenbush: foliage lighter; leaves rounder, softer,  Sawtooth Goldenbush: foliage stiffer, prickly © Project SOUND © Project SOUNDGoldenbushes are easy to grow in ourarea…  Soils:  Texture: any, even clay  pH: any, even alkali  Light: full sun best  Water:  Young plants: need some water to get going – plant in fall  Summer: little to moderate (Zone 2); looks better with occasional water  Fertilizer: none (although probably wouldn’t hurt it)  Other: even tolerates seasideCut back yearly in the fall after conditions Yellow-flowered bush sunflowers can add color duringbloom nearly every season © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 11
  12. 12. Trick # 9: use masses of color – in CA Prickly Phlox – Leptodactylon californicum selected areas, as accents Mother Nature’s garden:  Massed flowers used as accents – against a background of green or gold  Massed color is not required all year long – it’s often a seasonal treat J.S. Peterson @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database © Project SOUND © Project SOUND CA Prickly Phlox – Leptodactylon californicum Prickly Phlox – the name says it all…  Size:  Outer Coastal ranges from central CA to  < 2 ft tall Orange Co  1-2 ft wide  Locally in Santa Monica & San Gabriel Mtns  In scrub vegetation - Ceanothus cuneatus,  Growth form: Adenostema fasciculatum – usually on E. or W-  Drought-deciduous perennial facing slopes sub-shrub  Mounded form,5802,5803  AKA *Linanthus californicus  Foliage:  Bright green in spring/early summer  Very narrow, sharp leaves – esp. when dry – typical of the native phlox  Roots: deep & vigorous; use a large pot/planter © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 12
  13. 13. Flowers are magical… Phlox like it dry  Soils:  Texture: wide variety, but must be well-drained or roots will rot  Blooms: in spring - usually Mar-  pH: any local May in western L.A. Co.; about 1+ month  Light:  Full sun  Flowers:  Look like phlox or Vinca – very  Water: old-fashioned look  Winter: adequate  Color: usually pale magenta, but  Summer: needs summer dry may be very pale pink – even period after flowering – Zone 1 white or 1-2  Plant is covered with flowers – literally a mound of blooms  Fertilizer: none; likes poor soils  Sweet-musty scent in late afternoon-evening  Other: cut back the stems after flowering to keep is compact  Attracts many butterflies, hummingbirds & other insects © 2009 Aaron Schusteff © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Place Prickly Phlox wisely Trick # 10: consider using groundcovers or perennials for accent colors  As an attractive and interesting pot plant – move  Often have green foliage for a it during the ‘ugly phase’ long period – especially with a  In a rock garden – as in little summer water nature  Can be used in conjunction with  Mixed with other obligate native bulbs or annual wildflowers summer-dry species  Some have masses of blooms (Penstemons; native (Erigeron glaucus) grasses; annuals)  Others have fewer – but lovely –  Away from edges of paths, flowers, fruit, leaves other traffic areas  Sometimes less can be more – the  Great for dry slopes – other contrast of a lovely flower against ‘dry problem areas’ green foliage © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 13
  14. 14. Sticky Cinquefoil – Potentilla glandulosa Sticky Cinquefoil – Potentilla glandulosa  A plant of the West  Much of CA except S. deserts & Great Central Valley  Dryish to moist, open places from seashore to timberline – many plant communities  Many ssp. proposed and/or accepted – quite variable and will no doubt change  Resembles California Horkelia enough to confuse and frustrate, especially when the plants are not flowering.,6824,6838 © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Genus Potentilla Sticky Cinquefoil – like a large strawberry plant  Annual, biennial or perennial herb  Somewhat resemble strawberries but  Size: usually having dry, inedible fruit (hence the name Barren Strawberry for  1-2 ft tall some species).  1-2 ft wide  Leaves divided into leaflets arranged palmately like the fingers of a hand (3  Growth form: – 15 leaflets).  Herbaceous perennial  Five-petalled flowers are borne over a  Erect to tufted long period of time from spring to summer.  Dies back to woody root in fall/winter  The flowers are usually yellow, butcan be white, pinkish or red.  Foliage:  Potentilla species are used as food  Medium green – very hairy & plants by larvae of some Lepidoptera sticky (butterflies and moths) species.  Pinnately compound leaves  Some species of Potentilla are grown with 5-9 leaflets as ornamental plants, while some are  Tea or tonic made from leaves © 2007 Michelle Cloud-Hughes used in herbalism © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 14
  15. 15. Flowers are usually yellow Cinquefoils are easy..  Soils:  Texture: just about any  Blooms: except very heavy clays  Long bloom season – late  pH: any local spring through summer  Judicious summer water  Light: keeps it blooming May-Aug  Full sun with regular water  Part-shade probably works  Flowers: best  Strawberry-like (or © 2007 California Native Plant Society Horkelia-like)  Water:  Usually a bright yellow  Winter: good winter rains  Bloom pattern like  Summer: very adaptable – strawberries Zone 1-2 to 2-3; Zone 2 or  Good butterfly nectar plant more for long bloom season.© 2006 David McClurg  Vegetative reproduction:  Fertilizer: not picky – would be divisions in spring - easy fine with ½ strength fertilizer© 2007 Michelle Cloud-Hughes © 2007 Matt Below © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Garden uses for Sticky Trick # 11 : you don’t need a lot of color at any Cinquefoil one time – just some, strategically placed  As an attractive pot plant – grow like a strawberry  Nice addition to a rock garden – lush-looking with Sedums  Good in mixed groundcovers (with Yarrow, Strawberries)  Along paths and walkways  In a woodland garden  For streamside or bordering a lawn  In the herb garden © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 15
  16. 16. Use annual wildflowers for spots of Trick # 12 : use containers for seasonal seasonal color color – the ‘color bowl’ trick  Spring-Summer are the peak  Allows you to showcase plants at their annual wildflower seasons – most peak of flowering – and remove them species bloom 2-4 weeks during their resting season  Wide range of color, size, other  Allows you to have your color up close – characteristics – we are extremely on patio or balcony lucky  Allows you to use bulbs/corms while you are reproducing them – good for rare or  Serial sowing can provide a long expensive bulbs bloom season with some species eciesThree  Works especially well for plants with  Clarkias & Gilias do well with serial requisite summer dry period – bulbs & sowing annual wildflowers  Plant in 2-3 week intervals for color from spring to summer  Use a single species or mix – bulbs and  Be sure that seedlings get enough contrasting color wildflowers are summer water magical! © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Ithuriel’s Spear – Triteleia laxa Ithuriel’s Spear – Triteleia laxa  Foothills of CA  Locally on Catalina Isl. & possibly in Hollywood Hills  Open forests, mixed conifer or foothill woodlands, grasslands on clay soils from sea level to ~ 6000 ft.  Common where it occurs  Highly variable – may be more than one species/ssp  Favorite garden ‘bulb’ for long time;jsessionid=AC136357DA08D01EBB6BF2ED0434206D,8655,8669 © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 16