Friday, March 19, 2010

Texas Betony, Texas Gold Columbine, Foxtail Fern, Oxblood Lily & Pink Crinum

Another day of digging holes, excavating rock, adding sand & peat moss to existing soil, then putting plants into the ground.
Added two more Texas Betony (Stachys coccinea) to go with the existing one. Decided that the original plant was being successful enough to warrant company; the eventual red blossoms in front of the Sago Palm should be quite nice.

This will be my second attempt at Texas Gold Columbine (Aquilegia chrysantha var. hinckleyana). The plants I tried a few years back simply disappeared within 1-2 years. Not sure of the cause (not enough water, root competition from trees, soil too heavy, too much shade, Columbines don't like me). Planted a trio as a backdrop to Forsythia Sage (Salvia madrensis) which will (hopefully) end up towering above them later in the summer.

Not too far away, added a Foxtail Fern (Asparagus densiflorus 'Meyersii'). In another part of the yard, have previously had the looser, more open Asparagus Fern. But it doesn't seem to have the "presence" of the Foxtail.

Scattered about in three different locations, I added the Oxblood Lily (Rhodophiala bifida). Have been on the lookout for these and finally found them for a price I was willing to pay. My understanding is that they'll be going dormant in a few months (as the weather heats up), so I tried to locate them near a plant that would help buffer the empty area that their absence might create.

Of the two new Pink Crinums (no species or variety listed at nursery, only color!), I was able to get one in the ground without difficulty. But the second one took three attempts. First spot abandoned due to a solid layer of limestone that laughed at my sledgehammer and rock bar attempts. Second spot led to the discovery of a buried drainage pipe. Both locales will likely work with a shallow-rooted plant, but wasn't confident enough for the Crinum (especially since its future size is a complete unknown).

But the third attempt near the base of some Possumhaw worked fine.  Thank goodness, my energy was waning, the sunshine was beckoning, my near future involved stretching out on the deck & listening to birdsong.


  1. I know what you mean Columbines don't like me either, first year they look great, second year vanished.

  2. Get to know MSS at Zanthan Gardens. She's always dividing and giving away dozens of her oxblood lilies to local gardeners/bloggers. It's her garden's signature plant.