Wednesday, July 18

Garden Pic of the Day: Sea Holly

I just really came in from working outside this afternoon.
I slept in this morning, since Wednesdays are a day when I don't have any particular exercise class at the Y and can sleep in. I reserve mowing for exercise Wednesday and  Thursdays generally.
In  Florida humidity, it is exercise a plenty.
I also weeded out a new bed of liriope I put in next my the neighbors chain link fence in the back yar that was getting taken-over by weeds. I happen to have a really old bottle of Miracle-Gro Weed Preventer I was able to sprinkle around the plants once the weeds were out, then mulched the area heavily with grass-cuttings. Hopefully, that will help. Plus I polished off what was left of that weed preventer!

Today's Garden Picture:
Leavenworth Eryngo, a member of the Sea Holly
 eryngrium family.
Named after the man who discovered it. It's a native American plant, drought and heat hardy. It's tall---3 feet and thistle like, meaning it's stems and leaves and pineapple-shaped flowers are bristly. They give a you bit of a prickle if you brush them with your hand or arm.
This photograph is true to color. Took it myself. It's a very nice violet shade.
I only have the one plant and plan on letting it go to seed as well as saving some. The seed catalog says "bees and birds love it", so I grew it for them and for it's unique character.
Originally, out of a seed pack of 15 seeds, I got 3 to grow, but 2 perished, so all my hopes are on this sole survivor for a new crop next year. You can see it is rife with flower heads.
Pretty, no?

There are many breeds of Eryngrium. I also have another type of blue Sea Holly that, if it survives and blooms, should bear the more typical dark blue colored pineapple-flowers.
 (Remember I have a thing for finding blue flowers for my garden!)
I've tried buying the roots several times and this is the first that's actually taken.
(I got it from Walmart no less.)
I find the Sea Holly to be extremely difficult to get established in the flower bed. I've been trying for 3 or 4 years. But, finally now I have 2 going. So, if it's something you want in your bed, it will take persistence.
They are an excellent vase flower. I often saw them used in the flower shop as a blue accent.
Plus a great source of seed for the birdies in the fall!


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