Winter Sparkles …

Aloe ‘Venus’ a winter happy mound
to around 80cm tall

Garden Lovers, winter may be cool but never dull, when you know some hard working star performers to bring easy charm to your garden.

Cymbidium ‘Ice Cascade’ hybrid plant also excellent for baskets

Who would have thought we’d be imagining a cool, wet winter back in the bush fires of March Garden Lovers ? Anyway, here we are savouring the delights of planting that favours wintertime in the cool sub-tropics. Lower temps are the trigger for many of these to come into flower, or simply have such late flowering periods they can extend into the winter.

Aechmea wilkleri like little orange Christmas Trees tilted over ..

Many make excellent planting for containers like the bromeliads & cymbidium orchids that you may like to bring inside to enjoy their flowers as part of the house interior ..

Hibiscus mutabilis – Rose of Sharon

Others burst into seasonal interest like Hibiscus mutabilis and Tibouchina ‘David Bowen’ for the mixed shrub border. Cut to shape after flowers to ensure a good spring flush to support flowers that can extend into the June garden …

Tibouchina ‘David Bowen’ a late white flowering hybrid into early winter

And don’t forget cool weather warm bulbs like the species hippeastrums H. aulicum & H. psittacinum for stained glass colour sparkles in the semi-shade garden.

Hippeastrum psitticinum a sparkling Brazilian jewel that grows as an epiphyte on ‘Sea-Changer’s’ mirror deck greenwalls
Hippeastrum aulicum clumping forward of the mixed shrub border – and thanks to Susan Trathen for these seedlings she raised me from her own
Balgowlah Heights garden

The element of surprise is often forgotten in cool subtrops gardens, easily remedied with summer humidity hardy South African bulbs from the Fynbos.

Sparaxis grandiflora ssp. acutiloba an easy fynbos bulb for our winter gardens

Cool Subtrops Talk for Sydney Gardens

Don’t forget I’ll be giving a talk at the re-scheduled springtime dates for Collectors Plant Fair ’20 – 1pm Saturday, 26th September, Hawkesbury Race Course expressly on my Sydney cool subtropics gardens, to help you make a better garden with planting that’s a fit to the growing conditions you have in your own home garden. Mark your planners & buy your tix online now to avoid the cue !!

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