Saturday, July 11, 2009

California dreaming

Eschscholzia californica comes in shades of white, red, pink,
yellow and orange. I prefer the common orange.

Legend has it that the petals of the California poppy filled the soil with gold. If only that were true, California could find some relief from its budget woes. Nevertheless, the plant is putting on a high-dollar show in my garden. Maybe it's the lack of rain (which is beginning to exact a toll on some plants); the plant flowers better when it's kept on the dry side.

The seeds for these plants arrived in a Christmas card several years ago. A gardener friend of some friends was visiting from California one summer and they brought her by to check out the garden. That winter she sent us the seed and we haven't done without them since. Care is too easy; they germinate each spring and I thin aggressively, pulling out seedlings by the handful. It's hard not to smile when you round the corner and see the pool of sunshine.

I pulled out handfuls of seedlings to give the daylily (left)
a little room to breathe.

These poppies moved themselves here without any help
from me. That red plant in the back is a
columnar barberry. I like this mix of hot colors.

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