Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Happy MLK Jr. day from all of us at plant lust. Gardening may not solve the problems of the world, but spending time in beauty and tranquility surely doesn’t hurt. Here’s to dreamers. King Protea, aka Protea cynaroides “South Africa’s national flower, & the world’s best know Protea. This species has large upward facing blooms – up to 11” across, with pink outer bracts. Prized as a cut flower, & jaw dropping in person, it’s easy to understand why people will bend over backwards to grow this Protea outside its native range.” – Annies Annuals & Perennials Aralia cordata ‘Sun King’ “Incredibly bright yellow-green foliage on a massive clump eventually reaching as high as 6 feet. If you need drama in your shade garden (and really, who doesn’t?), you need this plant.” – Arrowhead Alpines Cyperus papyrus ‘King Tut’ A must have plant we snatch up each and every year here in our Portland gardens where they are annuals. The summer wouldn’t be the same without these elegant umbrellas. Peace &...
Dwarf Bigleaf Magnolia: One Sweet Tree

Dwarf Bigleaf Magnolia: One Sweet Tree

It’s hard to imagine there was a time I didn’t lust for specific trees. Not that far back, I could identify maples and conifers, and that’s about it. Now my list explodes with possibility. If you love tropical-looking, big gorgeous fragrant flowers, and quick gratification–Magnolia macrophylla var. ashei is just the tree for you. I found my at Cistus Nursery, and though it’s been in a pot for the past two years–awaiting placement in our new garden at Flamingo Park–it bloomed its wee heart this past season.     And the Ashe Magnolia plays well with other tropicals. I consider most of these annuals, though, I do overwinter the banana, because it’s super easy. (Shake off dirt. Wrap in newspaper. Throw in basement.)     I’ve had such a hard time deciding where to site my Ashe Magnolia, because I want to be able see it as often as possible. Before we settled keeping the apple tree, I’d planned to put it where that tree now casts a shadow, near the patio. Instead, it’s replacing of an old overgrown–and not in a good way–Rhododendron just outside the patio fence. The Rhodie came out via the tree dudes last summer, but they’d left the stump. Enter team men with mallet and pick ax.     Now I’ll be able to see my lovely big-leaf beauty from kitchen and patio–with a bonus of making it visible to my new neighbors. I can’t wait until they trust me enough to accept my guerilla gardening ways.     Cheers  ...