Tuesday 28 May 2019

Some things are meant to be

A couple of year ago I experimented with hypertufa, making a couple of test pots.  They were nothing special at the time, but slowly moss started to grow on them and they have turned into much more natural pots.  I have been looking for something to go in them and was surprised to find a little agave filifera at the local garden center.  They are just made for each other.

The agave has a certain compacta look to it, which would be great.  Sadly it is probably just a young plant, so will need some sort of intervention to keep it small. Either way for the next couple of years it is going to be put somewhere to be admired.

Friday 24 May 2019

Echeveria laui flower

I have said it before, there are few echeverias that have the drama of echeveria laui in flower.

Tuesday 21 May 2019

It's echeveria season

The garden and pots are are full of flower spikes at the moment. The best are in the echeveria elegans river, which looks amazing at this time of year.

In the evening they are backlit which adds to the drama.  The bumble bees love them

The concrete egg is full of echeveria cuspidata var zaragoza, which is one of my favourites. Sadly it isn't hardy for my garden so has to be moved inside over winter.

The flowers are are a nicer colour than the very pale elegans.

While out enjoying the evening sun, I thought I might as well plant up the aloe aristatas. I have been trying to get some to survive for the last few years and they seem fine in the main rockery. They have got to a decent size now and have properly started to spred

I have been growing on a pot to plant at the fron of the cycad rockery. The hope is they will contrast well with the echeverias.

Friday 3 May 2019

Exciting mangave update

So last year was a good mangave and manfreda year, with flowers on two manfredas, more on that in another post, and the mangave flowering.  So a quick recap: the mangave was produce by a friend and is hybrid between manfreda virginica and agave obscura

The pollen was provided by friends over at Crete Lodge exotic garden. They seem to have agaves in flower every year now, this time there were two agaves flowering at the same time. An agave mitis and one labelled as agave horrida, although they suspect it is not.

Photo courtesy of Melissa at Crete Lodge
Isn't that wall amazing, such a shame that the agave left such a big gap.

So the last time I posted progress on the flower spike there were seed pods. It seemed to take forever but finally these opened and amazingly there were seeds. These where sown and placed in a heated prop.  To be honest I was not that confident anything would germinate.

I was wrong, one month later and there were around 40 seedlings.

The problem was that in my eagerness, winter was the wrong time to sow them. They needed to be kept alive until spring and I'm terrible with seedlings: too much water, too little water. So I'm really surprised that 4 months later 19 are still alive. I'll take 50% surviving any day.

I know not very interesting to look at yet. It is only in the last few weeks they have really started to grow, most are now sending out their 2nd proper leaf. How good would it be to have a few new mangaves of my own making. I really hope that some of the horrida (or not) parentage comes through. I do like my toothie plants.

The funny thing is, with the two different pollen donars I would guess I am now the largest mangave producer in the UK.