Tag Archive for: Goodding’s Verbena

Native Ground Cover, Damianita (Chrysactinia mexicana)

Native Ground Cover, Damianita (Chrysactinia mexicana)

Most of us are familiar with the idea of using ground covers in the landscape and how they can add a welcome carpet of color.  

Goodding's Verbena (Glandularia gooddingii)

Goodding’s Verbena (Glandularia gooddingii)

But, you may be surprised to find that they serve another purpose that is especially appreciated in hot climates. Ground covers help to reduce the heat from the sun. They do this by preventing the sun from heating up the ground that they cover. When the ground heats up, it absorbs heat only to re-radiate it outward. So, using ground covers is just one way to help cool down the landscape by a degree or two.

I recently shared my favorite 10 Southwestern ground covers in my latest article for Houzz.

 

What is your favorite ground cover? 

Historic District Landscape Styles

Some daughter-in-law’s don’t have much in common with their father-in-law. 

In my case, when I married my husband 25 years ago, I wasn’t sure if I would have any shared interests with my father-in-law…..he was a dentist (I was deathly afraid of dentists), he ran 3 miles a day (I got a ‘stitch’ in my side if I tried running to the corner), he was very orderly and meticulous (I am neither of those things) and he was soft spoken (while I can be a bit loud).

I knew he loved me and I him, but sometimes conversation would lag because besides the kids and family, there wasn’t much else to talk about.

That is until I started to become interested in plants and landscaping.  You see, my father-in-law always had well-designed landscapes filled with beautiful plants.  As I decided to pursue a degree in Urban Horticulture, he was very supportive.

Urban Horticulture

Urban Horticulture, Goodding’s Verbena (Glandularia gooddingi)

Even better, we now had lots to talk about.  Our visits would often include visits into each others garden.

I would show him my newest plant acquisition and he would in turn, ask me questions about a few of his plant problems.

Urban Horticulture

Red Yucca  (Hesperaloe parviflora)

A few years later, he and my mother-in-law made the trip up to my newest job location, took me out to lunch and asked me to show them around the landscape areas I was in charge of.

Urban Horticulture

Blackfoot Daisy  (Melampodium leucanthum)

When he retired, he asked me to design the landscape for their new home.  He had some ideas of what he wanted and then let me go at it.

Urban Horticulture

Damianita  (Chrysactinia mexicana)

 I enjoyed working closely with him, in coming up with a design and the plants that he liked.

Urban Horticulture

Purple Prickly Pear  (Opuntia violaceae)

While I enjoyed visiting and seeing his landscape mature, I didn’t always agree with the way he like to prune his shrubs…

Urban Horticulture

His style gardening was orderly and meticulous, like he was.

We would sometimes tease each other because our styles were vastly different.

Urban 'Torch Glow' Bougainvillea

‘Torch Glow’ Bougainvillea

But no matter our landscaping styles, we still enjoyed going out into the garden together.

Last October, my father-in-law was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease).  

Phoenix Bird-of-Paradise  (Caesalpinia pulcherrima 'Phoenix')

Phoenix Bird-of-Paradise  (Caesalpinia pulcherrima ‘Phoenix’)

In a very short time, he was robbed of the ability to speak, swallow, eat and the use of his hands.

Now, unable to work in his garden himself, he had to rely on others.

Urban Horticulture

I considered it a privilege to help him where I could.

'Rio Bravo' Sage (Leucophyllum langmaniae 'Rio Bravo')

‘Rio Bravo’ Sage (Leucophyllum langmaniae ‘Rio Bravo’)

He endured this horrible disease with dignity, a sense of humor and through his faith.

Mexican Fence Post (Pachycereus marginatus)

Mexican Fence Post (Pachycereus marginatus)

This past Saturday, after 2 weeks in hospice care, he passed away.

Urban Horticulture

We were all blessed to be by his side as he took his last, labored breath.

One of the last things he wrote was,

“My race is almost over.”

**********************

I think it will be awhile before I can step into his garden without shedding tears.

I will miss sharing our love for plants together…..      

Tour of Sustainable Southwestern Landscapes: Part 1

This past spring, I was pleasantly surprised to find some previously lost plants growing again in my front garden.  How did I lose them in the first place?  Well, when I first designed and planted our garden, over 10 years ago, I included quite a few different flowering perennials.  Like many flowering perennials, they were short-lived and I did not replace all of them.  I don’t really have a good reason for not replacing them, but at the time, I was busy managing other gardens and landscapes and did not have the energy to focus on my own….sad wasn’t it?

Well, here is how I found my plants……last winter and spring, we received much more rainfall then usual.  In late March, I was checking around the garden for weeds when I saw some tiny leaves starting to poke their way through.  I looked closely at them before ripping them out and discovered that they were the offspring from my original plants.

Lost Plants, Paperflower (Psilostrophe cooperi)

Lost Plants, Paperflower (Psilostrophe cooperi)

Paperflower was the first of my lost perennials to return.  The seeds from my original plants had laid dormant for 8 years until the copious rainfall caused them to germinate.  I love this little plant with its gray-green leaves but the coolest thing is that as the flowers die, they become papery in texture.  You can see the spent flowers above towards the right lower corner.  

This plant makes a great groundcover and has bloomed for me spring through fall.

Goodding's Verbena (Glandularia gooddingii)

Goodding’s Verbena (Glandularia gooddingii)

Although I have grown many different types of Verbena, this one is my favorite.  I love the delicate, tiny purple flowers and the way the plant spreads out on the ground.  Definitely not a fussy plant, it will flower like crazy throughout the spring and off and on during the rest of the year. 

lost plants

Like many flowering perennials, it is rather short-lived but does self-seed.  It looks fantastic when placed next to boulders.

lost plants

Desert Marigold (Baileya multiradiata)

The last plant that has made it’s reappearance in my garden was my Desert Marigold.  This flowering perennial grows very well in the southwest and can be seen lining the roadways during the spring, especially when we have had sufficient rain.  It does very well in the residential landscape as well and is sometimes treated as an annual wildflower.

lost plants

The sunny, yellow flowers can be seen off and on, year round.  They are very easy to grow from seed, but can be purchased in 1-gallon containers.  However, it has been my experience that my Desert Marigolds last longer when I grow them from seed, rather then transplant them from containers.  

I am so happy to have all of these plants back in my garden ๐Ÿ™‚

Don’t you just love the feeling you get when you find something that you thought you had lost?

Today was a beautiful, crisp day.  Temps are in the upper 50’s and there are still flowers present in the garden.

beautiful day

Firecracker Penstemon

Hummingbirds just love the flowers.  Blooms will continue until late April.

**I will have some seeds available this spring.  Click here to see if this perennial will grow where you garden.

beautiful day

Stolk

Flowering in my children’s pool garden.See

earlier post about planting this garden.

beautiful day

Angelita Daisy (Tetraneuris acaulis)

This bright perennial will bloom all year.

This particular flower is from my neighbor’s garden.

beautiful day

Valentine (Eremophila maculata ‘Valentine’) (Tetraneuris acaulis)

My Valentine shrub is really starting to bloom.  

Blooming peaks in February, but continues into late April.

Rio Bravo Sage

Rio Bravo Sage (Leucophyllum langmaniae ‘Rio Bravo’)

Surprisingly, my Sage is still blooming, although there are not many left.

**Look closely at the little hairs covering the flower…this helps to protect the flower from the intense heat and sunlight in the summer months. 

Whirling Butterflies

Whirling Butterflies (Gaura lindheimeri ‘Siskiyou Pink’)

This perennial blooms spring through fall.  It is slowing down, but I was able to get some pictures of the last blooms.

yellow rose

My neighbor’s yellow rose.Roses

continue blooming through December and into January. 

 We actually have to cut them back severely in January to force dormancy.  It just kills me to prune off the beautiful rose blooms of my roses….

Purple Violas

My Purple Violas are blooming beautifully.

Goodding's Verbena

Goodding’s Verbena (Glandularia gooddingii)

A few blooms remain.

Next to the flowers is a volunteer Victoria Agave that has sprouted from the parent plant.

Globe Mallow

Globe Mallow (Sphaeralcea ambigua)

Blooms fall through the spring.

Unfortunately, they do self-seed prolifically and I have to do a bit of weeding.

**If any of you are interested in seeds, I should have quite a few available this spring.

Click here to see if Globe Mallow will grow in your area. 

Purple Lantana

Purple Lantana (Lantana montividensis)

A few blooms remain, but a lot of Lantana has been burned by frost.
This one is located underneath a tree, which gives some protection from the frost.

Bougainvillea

Bougainvillea

The colorful ‘petals’ are actually not the flower.  They are called ‘brachts’.

The actual flowers are the tiny cream colored flowers in the center.

*I realize I include photos of my bougainvillea often, but it has done very well. Most Bougainvillea have been damaged by the frost, but this one is located underneath a tree in my backyard, which has protected it from the cold.

Thank you for joining me for December’s Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day.  Please visit May Dreams Gardens for more sites to visit.

Coming up soon…..A Desert Christmas Celebration.  More specifically, how we decorate our homes and gardens for Christmas.   You may be surprised at what we cover with lights…..