Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Kudos to Knockouts...First Bloomers of the Year

If I were a General and roses were my Army, then Knockouts would be my Infantry.  They are troopers.....

They are first on the scene this year.  Grant you I had blooms in December, but they are the first ones that began this year...now there are a couple of other roses that have buds blooms too.  Altissimo would be arguing with me right now (if it could talk) because I'm not sure who won the race, but I want to say Knockout by the drive beat Altissimo by a nose.

Red knockout along the drive,  This is the one that was first blooming.  It had two on them before I started pruning a couple of weeks ago.

I don't give Knockouts much lip service, because they aren't my favorite kind of rose.  People have preferences to the kinds of roses, they like.  Most visitors love my Icebergs roses.  They smell great but they are small and white.  I don't understand why they do, but they do.  

I prefer huge, valentine day style roses (not necessarily red) with long stems, big blooms, lots of petals, conical shape and don't care about the fragrance.  Knockouts are none of these.  But I am glad I have them as roses for several reasons.   
  • Well, they are the first to bloom
  • They are very good at dealing with neglect, disease, drought, lack of food....like I said, troopers
  • They do make great shrub roses.  I don't know if they are officially called shrub roses but when planning landscaping far from the house that will not get as much attention, these are my picks.

I think this is the same Knockout as above

This sunny knockout rose tree, I believe had blooms on it in December, but this (albeit fuzzy) is an opening bud.  The sunny knockouts (yellow) do smell wonderful.  I don't care about smell, but I do love it when they have one.

Red Knockout behind the pool...I thought these were all pink...ah well

As I type this, I am certain Altissimo is complaining he won.  For the record, I don't know for sure that this is an Altissimo, but from my research, I think it is.  His petals have fallen off from the rain because he had been there so long,
and that what he is saying to defend first place.

I know it's not bloom day but might as well show what else is flowering....and the rose runner ups....because Altissimo refuses to concede.

Azaleas are blooming everywhere

Close up of the azalea...this is not really mine..but sorta...the cemetary next door planted ornamentals around it.  They have migrated over to the property, so I am borrowing her.....

I think these are huckleberries?  When I clear an area of underbrush,   I am careful to inspect what I am removing.   I am a big fan of one tree, one spot, but behind the fountain on the driveway, wild palmetto and huckleberry have grown.

Icebergs are budding, notice the blackspot......they didn't have leaves two weeks ago and now they have blackspot??  Let the battle begin...

Encore Azaleas really live up to their name....they stay in bloom.

I finally cleaned up the front bed.  I gave them some azalea fertilizer last week.

This is my Mexican Heather that I so impatiently put in the exposed field.  It froze.  I should have put a five gallon bucket on it instead of a bag.  You know I can not get watering right at all....either a plant is soaking wet or its bone dry, but these were bone dry..believe it or not, it's not dead...  I think I need to leave the damaged layer on it as protection for the underside that is very much alive.

See it has green leaves under it.

Sorry for the blurriness..but I have discovered that if heather is under an awning, like my house or under something, like this fountain, they do just fine.  They don't like the cold but if you kinda protect them they are fine.  On hard freezes I do cover them but I think they yellow ones are gonna make it...Ill leave them as they are until the end of the month, then cut them down.

What you are seeing is a ton of hydras, lorapetelums, sago, loquat, coleus to name a few...

I think the bougainvilleas are planning a secret plot to never, ever, ever leave the greenhouse.  They have looked this way all winter, and all I did, was water them.  A few months back I did prune them esp. the white/pink one.

Mums outside the greenhouse still have blooms.  When can I put these in the ground?

Hibiscus like it here but not like the bougainvilleas,

Up close of bougainvilleas

Gerber daisy is such a Good Morning Flower.
Gerber Daisy


Mexican Heather
This rose doesn't count...It's the Orlando rose, because it was a Christmas gift and had been in the greenhouse.  Blackspot...really?  Already?  ugh.
You have no idea what an accomplishment this picture is.  I have tried soooo many times to propagate from cuttings, and here they are....red leaves....   Look ma, no hands!


NellJean said...

Things are moving right along, aren't they? I understand your impatience to get everything out and growing. Hot, humid weather will be upon us before we're ready.

Knockout Roses are officially floribundas. Knockouts are popular because of their long season of continuous bloom in a landscape. They're kind of like 'Sammy Russell' daylilies -- there are better choices but they're known to be easy and long-lasting so they are everywhere.

Your huckleberries may be sparkleberries, all are from the same family but sparkleberries are not tasty. You'll be able to tell: huckleberries will be ripe and juicy in the summer. Sparkleberries turn dark in the fall and are dry and not tasty. Did you see any berries? Birds kind of leave them to last when there's no other berries.

Sparkleberries do make pretty little understory trees with some encouragement. I was going to make a sparkleberry post on my blog, He-who-mows found a bunch of them along a fence where he was cutting limbs yesterday. He thought they were huckleberries, too. I made photos when I went to look.

You'll have to Google for discussion of Mums, or ask Holley.

Janie Jurkiewicz said...

The children's grandmother picks them to eat..I think she called them huckleberry. We have a lot of wild berries on the property...I used to call them all blackberries, we even have wild muscadine and persimmon too so I try to take care what I clear but it does make a lovely spring flower, and I love any plant that's pretty and I don't have to take care of. I will be sure to ask Holley on the mums. I am starting to gain a second wind and the nursery, which is closing and selling full grown ornamentals for a dollar, are open for a few weeks...so like the knockouts...I am going to be a trooper. I do want to look into daylillies...when I get to that concept..Ill be sure to pester you to death....

HolleyGarden said...

You just can't beat those Knock Outs! I like your comparison of them being the infantry of an army. I think you can plant your mums anytime. I keep mine in the ground year round. They will bloom in spring. Cut them back after they bloom so they don't get too leggy, then they will bloom again in the fall. I am so impressed with your bougainvilleas! I have two that I have kept in my garage all winter. They each have one leaf! At least they're not dead!

Janie Jurkiewicz said...

Holley, they didn't do neaaarrr this good outside. They love the humidity an the water I think.

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