Sunday, June 28, 2020

JUNE, month of Water Lilies and butterflies

June is one of those months that you must get through when you live in a sub-tropical climate like South Florida.  Between the constant rain, the hot humid weather, and the armada of new mosquitos.  There is not much to like about this month if you are a gardener.  The month is not a total washout, there are a few bright spots.  The water lilies blooming all over the garden like wildflowers and the large number of butterflies visiting the garden, especially the zebras.

Mexican petunias are also popular in June.

Dozens of Zebra butterflies overnight in my Firebush plant

Julia butterflies are also common this time of the year

I pruned both my mango trees this week.

Avocados are almost ready for harvest. 

Stay safe

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Time for the summer annuals

Over the years the number of winter and summer annuals planted in my garden has decreased due to constrain in space and time.  My gardening style has changed, I now concentrate on year-around plants like bromeliads, ferns and others.  I do have small areas in the garden that I like to keep some color all year, so in spring and fall, I change the plants that are more appropriate with the South Florida weather conditions.

May is usually the time to plant the summer annuals, this year I am a little late with my planting, Covid-19 has thrown all the schedules out the window.  I took out all the Inpatiens last month and today I replaced them with Mexican Heather.  These flowers are great for the hot Florida summer and attract butterflies and bees.  The Purslane is supposed to be summer annuals, but these were planted a year ago and are doing as good as new.  

The ground orchids were planted in this corner of garden several years ago, they produce flowers all year, but summer is their peak. 

This week my wife asked me if I had any white Periwinkle flowers in the garden, it had to be the white flower with the white center.  I have many Periwinkle plants growing wild all over the garden but none with a white flower and a white center.  It turns out that these flowers were used in Cuba by our grandparents as a remedy to cure dry eyes.  They would boil the flowers in distilled water and use the water to drop in their eyes and that would cure or relieve the condition.  I found the plant at Home Depot and planted one in my side garden.  I don’t know if this remedy works, but I will find out soon, someone in our family has a bad case of dry eyes and none of the eye drops proscribed by doctors have worked.

Happy Father's Day
(Please stay safe and wear a mask in public)