Tuesday

The Phenomena of Goth Gardening

Recently I have reconnected with a person from my past. The experience was associated with sweet and bitter memories and she unknowingly pointed out a rather unusual form of gardening. 

The Goth Garden. 

I see many people asking about about Goth or EMO gardening all over the web and I never knew what it meant, thought it was depressing nonsense.

Black flowers? That seems strange to me, because how would a bee or a butterfly be attracted enough wanting to pollinate. 
I am beginning to think that it's probably not any less strange than my desire to find the diamond in the rough, the best of the best, the most

unusual, the most challenging and eventually the ultimate (?).

There must be some happiness in black flower gardening. .....I am still researching this phenomena.

In the meantime, here are some very beautiful and dramatic black or near black flowers :)

Here is a good US source for black (almost black) flowering seeds
They have kits and many many individual species as well, even black vegetables!  - How cool!


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Amazing Stunning Silver Princess Eucalyptus

Silver Princess Eucalyptus
Eucalyptus caesia magna

The new seeds are planted and happy in trays. Lets see how it goes...



This beauty is considered by many to be the most striking species in the genus Eucalyptus, and certainly has some of the largest flowers. The flowers are 2"-3' in diameter and dangle in clusters, very visible in the sparsely-leaved tree. The stems and flowers buds are all covered in a white powdery 'bloom'. In the wild, this is native to only a few granite outcrops in the desert of Western Australia.

Silver Princess is a small-growing dry zone-dwelling Euacalypt shrub and small tree. It will do well in areas that are dry and that have fairly mild winter lows. One absolute requirement is a well-drained soil. The plant is known to grow in the Santa Cruz botanical gardens and in Arizona, so it can succeed on US soil, but it must have very sandy loams in the gardens.
This weeping small tree benefits from pruning and shaping. It is hardy to at least 22°F.

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Monday

The spectacular Firewheel Tree

We've started the seeds. This one will be a bonsai. When buying seeds from Australia, note that many of the seeds need a smoke pre-treatment to aid germination. It's basically a piece of paper infused with smoke primer solution which contains a combination of natural substances that overcome dormancy and stimulate seed germination. The degree of germination success varies with the species, but on average, treated seeds give at least twice the number of seedlings that untreated seeds do. Given the rarity, cost and availability of some seeds, it's a wise move to use the primer. Very hard to find for sale and very expensive. Some sellers offer a free bit of primer enough for the amount of seeds sold - but not very many!

There are approximately 30 species in the genus Stenocarpus. Most are found in New Caledonia and there are about 7 species native to Australia. S.sinuatus is the best known species as it is widely cultivated both in Australia and overseas.
The firewheel tree takes its name from the configuration and color of the inflorescence in which the small flowers have a wheel-like arrangement. It is one of Australia's most spectacular trees. S.sinuatus occurs in nature as a tree to about 80 Ft but it is usually smaller in cultivation, particularly in cooler areas. The dark, glossy green leaves may be entire or lobed and up to 18"long. The conspicuous flower clusters are seen in summer through to autumn.
Despite its sub-tropical to tropical origin, S.sinuatus is adaptable to a range of climates and will even succeed in dry climates if additional water is available. It prefers fairly rich, loamy soils but is tolerant of most well drained soils. It may be grown in a sunny or partly shaded location.

Seeds have been located here; US source

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