Saturday, July 14, 2012

Pink Ice Plant Rescue

One of the front garden's major features in the spring is the various colors of Lampranthus spectabilis, or Trailing Ice Plant. I current have three different colors (purple, red, and pink):
All three ice plant colors + red false yucca and blue fescue
The purple L. spectabilis was one of the first plants I added two years ago, and the red L spectabilis got added a year later. Both have survived winters with snow here, although not a lot of snow, and with a thick mulch of leaves from my neighbor's tree. The light pink ice plant got added last year also, but it was another plant rescue...

The house next to mine went into foreclosure last year (a "strategic" foreclosure, per the homeowner) and so the landscape wasn't getting watered or cared for. Their grass died, and weeds started going in the lawn. To keep them from getting into my lawn, plus help the house look nicer, I mowed their area several times, until the summer started, and things stopped growing. I had noticed the light pink ice plant in one of the beds, and it was not dealing well with no water. So I dug out a clump, and moved it into my garden. The picture above shows it in the full sun spot, but I also planted some under the roses on the north side of the house:
Ice Plant in shade - it's a lot less bushy than the full-sun location
Where it is still blooming now, several weeks later, and hanging out with the (red) rose (Rosa 'blaze') and the (pale pink) mexican evening primrose (Oenothera speciosa):
Three different shades of pink - I never realized how much pink I have in this corner!
One of the things I love about L spectabilis is how soft the flowers are. They also feel cool to the touch, regardless of how hot is it:
Close up of flower - one of the last ones to open
I also enjoy the way all the colors combine, and how the foiliage takes on different colors too:
Full sun location for all three colors, plus red yucca (with growing bloom spike!)
Next year, there should be a yellow one too, although not L spectabilis, so it might not bloom at the same time.

Oh, and that planting bed I took it out of? It looks like this now:
Neighbor's (former) planting bed
 About a week after I transplanted the ice plant, the bank sent in a crew to "take care" of the outside. They pulled up everything in that bed (there was a lot of other stuff in that bed) plus a lot of other plants and replaced it all with fake red mulch and weed barrier. Really attractive... it took another 6 months for the house to sell. I'm glad the pink ice plant escaped the fate of the rest of those plants.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, stupid bank! What a bummer that all those plants got ripped out and replaced with weed barrier and red mulch (I hate that stuff!) I'm glad the house has sold, though. Maybe your new neighbors will be gardeners. I love ice plant, it does well here too. I think I have yellow and purple.


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