Originally introduced by Cistus Nursery from a seed collection at 8000' in La Siberica, Mexico, this very desirable plant has become hard to find of late but our two plants finally flowered with impressive spikes that was one male and one predominately female so we had seed! These have been undamaged in brief nighttime drops to 10F and have formed new crowns after flowering so the show will continue. It is mandatory to have a series of parties when these bloom, btw.
As perennials go, this Mexican Pea Tribe member is staggeringly impressive. From a woody base, there appears in spring stout stems reaching 8 feet.. On a mature plant, these stems are numerous and it becomes a dominant seasonal shrub. Pinnate leaves with 4 leaflets, large discoidal purple- veined stipules and big yellow flowers in fall.
Thanks to Adam Black of Peckerwood for sharing cuttings of this shrubby winter-blooming Senecio. This is a collection from Mexico and has proved to be a good plant in Texas as well as hardy in North Carolina. Pretty new to us so we can't vouch for it yet in our maritime steppe climate but late season yellow flowers would be sweet.
A rare relative of our local Salal (Gaultheria shallon) collected by Jeanette Kunnen in the mountains above Oaxaca in Mexico. We were given cuttings by the late Ericaceous collector Art Dome who grew this to perfection at his Seward Park garden in Seattle. Scrumptious new growth and lots of pink bells followed by blue-black berries. Art grew his against a terraced wall on a slope where it got morning sun and it was a happy camper.
One of those perennial Lobelia that shouldn't be as hardy as it is but mountainous areas of southern Arizona and northern Mexico have plants with surprising hardiness. A graceful clump of thin willowy leaves on stems 15"-24" tall with a profusion of midsummer tubular red flowers with a bright yellow throat. Deciduous in winter, ours handles our brief drops to 10F with mulch.
This Central American epiphytic blueberry relative calls the cloud forests home and enjoys cool conditions with no frost. Brilliant red new growth, tubular soft red flowers with red calyces followed by darkly intriguing fruit. Will develop a caudiform lignotuber in time. This is a visual feast and a balm to a mind jaded by the cartel commodification of plants. Which is ironic considering the vast greenhouse plant factories in Central and South America owned by multinationals which produce mainstream young plants or cuttings for sale in the US.
Rio Grande Rain Lily. This has the cheeriest yellow flowers with burnt orange streaking which appear without leaves in late summer to early fall with the onset of fall rains if grown in a sunny dry spot. These get 6" tall but are wicked cute and will self sow to make an enviably vibrant patch in time. Native to the Southeast and Mexico. Zone 7.
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