Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Bush Strawflower

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Oct 15, 2015 3:06:53 PM

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Bush Strawflower

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Bush Strawflower (Bracteantha bracteata) is a summer annual or short-lived perennial native to eastern Australia. Probably the most ubiquitous Australian native in California nurseries, Bush Strawflower has earned it's place due to its extremely long-lasting and dramatic blossoms. Its common name is derived from its papery bracts which are shiny and stiff, radiating from the true flowers in the center like everlasting sun rays. 

HeatherBracteantha-642605-editedGenerally reaching 10-14 inches high and wide, Strawflower is the perfect little "filler" for containers or nestled into sunny flower borders. There are a wide range of colors in cultivation, but the most common varieties are bright, warm colors such as red, yellow and orange. Its extreme heat tolerance and low water use makes it a brilliant choice for a summer pot-up, but its flowers will keep blooming all the way up until frost. 

It's Heather's pick-of-the-week because:

"I absolutely love this plant! The flowers are so bright and unusual and they last forever in the full hot sun."

 Want more plants that won't wimp out in the heat? 

Low-Water Plants

 

 

Topics: Waterwise, Flowers, Flowers in the Heat, Summer

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: California Fuchsia

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Sep 4, 2015 10:02:41 AM

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: California Fuchsia

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California Fuchsia (once botanically known as Zauschneria, recently reclassified as Epilobium) is probably the most recognizable California native perennial besides the famous CA poppy. It's no wonder- the flowers are such a vivid red-orange that they're highly visible from yards away. Thanks to this perennial's dazzling blossom, many new cultivars are being sold each year, which is great news for water-conscious gardeners, hummingbirds and native pollinators too!

NickCaliforniaFuchsia-349991-editedThere are many new varieties of California Fuchsia on the market that vary widely in size, but they generally reach 1-2' high with a spreading habit 4-6' wide. They grow in areas with very poor soil and little water, so don't make the mistake of "loving them to death" with rich soil, plenty of fertilizer and regular irrigation. If you place your California Fuchsia in full sun and give it barely any attention, it will be far happier than if you pamper it like a prima donna.

If you're inspired to give this fuss-free beauty a try, remember that fall is the best time to plant, especially when it comes to native plants. This is because the cool weather allows the plant to establish an extensive root system and adapt to your soil before the weather gets hot again. It's Nick's pick-of-the-week because:

"California Fuchsia is easy to grow, very drought tolerant, and a hummingbird magnet! It's a great pop of color in the dead heat of summer when most other plants are bloomed-out."

Yearning for more un-thirsty plants?

  Drought Tolerant Plants

 

Topics: California Native Plants, Flowers in the Heat, Low Water Plants, Hummingbirds, Low maintenance, pollinators

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Penstemon 'Margarita BOP'

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 30, 2015 5:45:00 PM

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Penstemon 'Margarita BOP'
Penstemon_Margarita_BOP
Penstemon 'Margarita BOP' is distinctly different from other varieties of Penstemon, even at first glance. That's because atop it's compact 2' x 2' mound of foliage are dozens of flowers, which may be sky blue, or iridescent violet, or somewhere in between. This California native perennial was a chance discovery by Las Pilitas Nursery sometime in the early 80's when the workers noticed that this little Penstemon which sprung up on it's own was flourishing despite never being watered, fertilized or tended to. Las Pilitas Nursery is located in Santa Margarita California, and the 'BOP' stands for Back of Porch where the original specimen thrived for over a decade, until it was accidentally smothered by cement. 
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Rarely in the garden, do you find a plant that manages to look so good with little maintenance. So 'Margarita BOP' is truly a treasure. If it's ethereal blue-violet flowers don't entice you, maybe the fact that it is drought tolerant, thrives in full sun, and attracts hummingbirds, just might. 

It's McKenna's Pick-of-the-Week because:

"It's an easy-to-grow perennial that comes back strong every year! The flower color is spectacular, and I'm impressed by how it blooms all summer without a lot of water."

 

 

 

 

 







Are you crazy for California natives? Learn more about the best California natives for the Sacramento valley.  

Our Favorite Natives

 

For more ideas on how to re-vamp your yard to be more water wise, check out our Drought Tolerant Plant List.

Topics: Native Plants, Waterwise, Sacramento Low Water Plants, What Can I Plant This Season?, Flowers in the Heat, Low Water Plants, Sacramento Gardening, Summer, Drought Tolerant

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Euphorbia

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 24, 2015 6:00:00 PM

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Euphorbia
Euphorbia-146904-edited
Euphorbia (sometimes known as Spurge) is sort of a perennial jack-of-all-trades. Many people know that it's water-wise, bears peculiar flowers and displays striking foliage color. However, did you know that it's also evergreen, disliked by deer and gophers and thrives in full sun to partial shade? Euphorbia is one of the largest and most diverse genus of flowering plants in the world, it comes in many shapes and forms. Even the popular Christmas houseplant, Poinsettia, is a part of the Euphorbia family! With all of these wonderful traits, it's no wonder that Euphorbia has been a choice plant for nurseries in recent years, with more and more varieties in every color imaginable showing up each season.
NickEuphorbia-192578-edited

 

It grows happily in our Mediterranean climate, and with so few pests to worry about, Euphorbia requires very little effort to maintain. Although it benefits from the occasional boost of organic fertilizer and light pruning in late winter-early spring, this laid-back perennial will astound you with it's ability to perform in even the most neglectful gardener's yard. Although some varieties are frost-tender succulents, the garden-hardy varieties pictured above, 'Ascot Rainbow', 'Glacier Blue' & 'Blackbird' will tolerate temperatures as low as 10°F. 
It's Nick's plant pick-of-the-week because:

 

"Euphorbia has attractive foliage all year-round! Plus, it's drought tolerant, full sun, deer resistant and low maintenance. What's not to love?"

 

 

 

 

 

 
To learn more about plants that are disliked by deer, check out our Top Water-Wise & Deer Resistant Plants for Sacramento Gardeners 

For more easy-going perennials...

Drought Tolerant Plants

Topics: Waterwise, Sacramento Low Water Plants, Flowers in the Heat, Flowers for Hot Weather, Summer Garden, Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Gomphrena 'Pink Zazzle'

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 16, 2015 9:42:05 AM

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Gomphrena 'Pink Zazzle' 

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Gomphrena 'Pink Zazzle' is a relatively recent introduction to the world of horticulture, and it has already made quite an impression. That's because this sun-loving, drought tolerant perennial flourishes in the scorching Sacramento valley summers. Even its flowers hold up in 100°F heat, because what appears to be the 'flower' is actually flower bracts. The true flowers are the small yellow star-shaped flowers nestled within these bracts, punctuating it with bursts of color as it slowly unfurls from the center. 

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It forms a low mound of fuzzy, bright green foliage about 8-16 inches high and wide. Its tidy growth habit makes it perfectly suited for container culture, where it looks stunning paired with "fillers" such as Nemesia and "spillers" such as Bacopa. Butterflies and hummingbirds will find it hard to resist those stunning blooms, making it a truly valuable plant to have in your garden. 'Pink Zazzle' loves the heat but hates the cold, so it's a perennial grown as an annual in our area. If protected from frost, it will likely return to dazzle you with another long-lasting show of flowers next year. 

It's Jack's pick-of-the-week because:

"The flowers last forever, and when they start to fade to light pink on the edges, it gives a really cool transitional color effect."

 More water-wise pollinator attracting container ideas...

Drought Tolerant Plants

Appealing to Pollinators

 

Topics: Waterwise, Sacramento Low Water Plants, What Can I Plant This Season?, Flowers, Flowers in the Heat, Flowers for Hot Weather, Low Water Plants, Beneficial Insects, Container Ideas, Summer Flowers, Drought Tolerant

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Dinnerplate Hibiscus 'Luna'

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 10, 2015 12:05:10 PM

Our Plant Pick-of-the-Week: Dinnerplate Hibiscus 'Luna' 

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Dinnerplate Hibiscus may not be as popular as it's tropical counterpart, but it is equally beautiful. As an added bonus, it is more cold hardy than Tropical Hibiscus, even tolerating temperatures down to at least 30° F. With mind-blowing 4-5 inch flowers in summery shades of deep pink and white all throughout the summer, this sun-loving sub-shrub will certainly steal the show in your garden.

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Reaching about 4-5 feet high and wide, Dinnerplate Hibiscus is a herbaceous shrub, meaning it should be cut nearly to the ground every winter, and it will return in the spring. It does best in full sun or light shade, making it ideal for planting en masse in a sunny border. It thrives in rich soil with regular water and can even grow at the edge of ponds or in poorly draining soil which tends to stay boggy. 'Luna' series is a more compact variety which is also well suited to containers.

It is Elise's plant pick-of-the-week because

"Dinnerplate Hibiscus is so versatile and showy! I love how it can be used as a pond plant or as a container specimen."

 

With it's breathtaking satiny summer-blooming flowers and moon-inspired namesake, Dinnerplate Hibiscus 'Luna White' would make a striking addition to a garden that shines when the sun goes down...

Moon Gardens

For more pond inspiration, check out our 4 Tips for Creating a Breathtaking Backyard Pond. 

 

Topics: What Can I Plant This Season?, Flowers in the Heat, Pond, Summer

Let's Talk Lavender

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jun 5, 2015 10:59:00 AM

Lavender is one of the most versatile perennials you can grow. It does well in full sun or partial shade, stays green in the winter, blooms spring through fall, is drought tolerant, attracts beneficial insects and thrives in the heat. It also has numerous household uses, from aromatherapy to cocktail infusions. Be careful which varieties you harvest to eat- only Lavandula angustifolia and Lavandula x intermedia are edible. 

Lavender_bush-286207-editedCare & Maintenance

  • 4-6 hours of direct sun per day
  • Well-draining soil
  • Low water
  • The essential oils that make lavender so fragrant are mostly concentrated in the leaves. If you want your lavender to have a very strong scent, fertilize sparingly using only organic fertilizers
  • Lavenders will repeat bloom when they are deadheaded, simply shear off the old dried stalks before new ones start to appear
  • Prune to shape in winter to keep them from getting woody in the center

At Green Acres Nursery & Supply, we regularly carry a wide variety of lavandula*. French, Spanish and English are the most common types, with many varieties within those subsections.

 

French Lavender (Lavandula dentataCharacterized by gray-green foliage and serrated leaf margins, french lavender grows about 3' tall by 5' wide and bears tall stalks bearing plump pale purple blossoms. It's fragrance is not as strong as that of the English or Spanish varieties, so it is best used in the landscape. 

'Goodwin Creek'- Most common hybrid of french lavender, dense growth habit and silvery toothed foliage bearing tall stalks topped with elongated violet-blue flower whorls.

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Spanish Lavender (Lavandula stoechas)  One of the more common varieties, it's appearance is distinct from other lavenders, forming a low mound 1-3' tall by 2-3' wide. It's flowers are held close to the foliage, more compressed than most lavender and topped with flag-like petals. Reseeds profusely, deadhead to prevent it from popping up in unexpected places. 

'Otto Quast'- Dwarf variety of the already compact Spanish lavender. Can be kept as small at 1' tall by 2' wide.

'Silver Anouk'- A variety with striking silvery foliage which contrasts nicely with deep purple flowers.

English Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) English lavender is the most strongly scented variety available. It tends to form a neat, symmetrical mound of silver-green foliage with tall, elegant stalks bearing slender purple flowers. This variety performs well in the landscape, but it is also great for cooking and aromatherapy. 

'Hidcote'- A compact variety usually only reaching 2' tall by 2' wide. A mound of green foliage is topped with short stalks bearing deep violet-blue flowers. 

'Munstead'- usually only reaching 1-2' tall by 2' wide, bearing medium stalks of bright purple flowers. 

'Thumbelina Leigh'- The tiniest of the English lavenders, reaching only 6" tall by 1' wide. Short stalks bearing compact deep violet flowers. 

lavender_bee-681876-editedHybrid Lavenders (Lavandula x intermedia) Varieties of lavender bred for hardiness and tolerance of humidity. Usually characterized by their branching stems and interrupted flower spikes.

'Dutch'- Forms a mound of gray foliage reaching 3' tall by 2 1/2' wide. Stems branch to narrow, deep violet-blue flower spikes.

'Fred Boutin'- dense silvery gray foliage forms a mound 3-4' tall and wide topped with short spikes bearing violet flowers.

'Grosso'- Compact growth habit to about 3' tall by wide bearing stalks topped with deep violet-blue flower spikes. Grown commercially for its intense fragrance. Great for drying.

'Provence'- To 2' tall by 3' wide, forms a symmetrical mound of silvery-green foliage topped with stalks of light purple flower spikes. Makes a great informal hedge. 

 Now, What to Plant with Your Lavender

Salvia and lavender go together like peanut butter and jelly. Try adding penstemon, coreopsis, and poppies with lavender to bring a variety of color and pollinators to your garden. For a tidier look, you can plant compact lavender with some African daisies, euphorbias, and shrubs like barberry, Indian hawthorn, and 'Golf Ball' pittosporum.

Plant your lavender and join the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge.

Million Pollinator Garden Challenge

Want to learn more about plants that thrive in dry heat?

Drought Tolerant Plants

* Check stores for current availability

Topics: Fragrant Plants, Edibles, Flowers in the Heat, Beneficial Insects, Drought Tolerant

Wordless Wednesday at Green Acres

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Aug 20, 2014 10:14:00 AM

Enjoy…

 

Green Acres Water Tower

 

 

butterfly on lavender

 

 

strawflower

 

 

plant responsibly

 

 

gomphrena flower blooms

Topics: Flowers in the Heat, Flowers for Hot Weather, Summer Garden, Summer Flowers

Wordless Wednesday - Simple Pleasures

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 23, 2014 2:27:00 PM

Enjoy...

WW 1 Santa Barbara Daisy



WW 3


ww4


mimulous


Topics: Flowers in the Heat, Summer Flowers, Dog Friendly

Wordless Wednesday- Fun Plants of the Season

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 2, 2014 4:44:00 PM

Enjoy these images of beautiful plants in season now...

DINNERPLATE HIBISCUS



SPIN THE BOTTLE HIBISCUS



BROMELIADS resized 600



SUCCULENTS2 resized 600

Topics: Flowers, Flowers in the Heat, Flowers for Hot Weather, Summer Flowers

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