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"Possibility and promise greet me each day as I walk out into my garden. My vigor is renewed when I breathe in the earthiness and feel the dirt between my fingers. My garden is a peaceful spot to refresh my soul." Meems

Welcome to my Central Florida Garden Blog where we garden combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly plants, and tropicals.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Full Moon Blooms: October GBBD

Has everyone been drawn by the spectacular moon skies these past few nights?

Not a cloud in the sky last night at its fully orbed magnificence lit the entire garden. It was in full sight in the western sky this morning even as the sun had risen .

This week we are realizing a bit of relief from the intense humidity. This is the second little wave of relief we've gotten down here since autumn began. High temps still in the upper 80's and lows in the 70's- even at night- but with drier air outdoor living is much more enjoyable.

What that means for the garden is also a bit of relief. It seems to respond to this time of year with an extremely gradual slow down mostly due to shorter days. The caladiums that have kept us in color all summer are now mostly faded. Most of the impatiens have been cut back but are rapidly making a resurgance since the break from the upper 90's temps. We'll just keep right on growing through the next few months albeit not as profusely as summertime.

With the soil still warm, there are quite a few blooms here and there. Some intense and some sparse. Let's have a look...
Plumbago is definitely still making the biggest show in the back garden. Two hedge rows planted one adjacent to the other towards the back of the property. There they are allowed to get very bushy and tall and no one minds. I dedicated an entire post to this blue beauty a few posts back which you can read here if you'd like to see/know more.

I know I've said it before but ... I'm not a huge fan of orange... in my garden (I am fine with it in yours). Yet as I put together the photos for this post... to my surprise ... there are several orange flowers blooming in my garden right now. I like them all. The hibiscus was a gift and it has bloomed continually all summer and into autumn.

Let's just say all this orange is a tribute to autumn...

The seven foot tall Pagoda plants; Clerodendrum paniculatum are still blooming. They have not stopped since July. You can read more about them here.

Okay we better get this moving along... no more stories... just blooms. Well, I'll try that anyway.

Lantana- very profuse right now. It loves this weather. And the bees and butterflies love this color.

Scarlet Milkweed (for the monarchs- they are with us all year, too).

Anthurium --- can you see it tucked under the ginormous leaves of the elephant ears? I'm not sure of the name of the elephant ears... this is the one that has the deep purple veins on the underside and deep green upperside leaves.

I'm currently very enamored with this container plant.

A closer look at the blooming anthurium moved here after not much luck with it indoors last autumn.

What was it I said about no more back story... I just can't be brief can I?

Ixora coccinea

Salvia Coccinea growing in a container pot next to the veggie garden. This plant was started by poking cuttings into the soil. It just loves to bloom its head off continually.

And ahhhh, the blue ginger. These unique purple blooms stand tall on the top of 6 foot stalks. They've been blooming since the beginning of September. Love them. Love ginger of all kinds.

Diplademia: blooming continually since spring... it'll do even better over the next month since the crape myrtle tree that shades it partially is losing its leaves.

There are more blooms in my side bar. Oh, and my fall tomato plants and blue lake green beans are just beginning to flower. It's good the soil is still warm for them and the sun is shining brightly every day to help them along.

Thanks to Carol at May Dreams Gardens for the creation of bloom day. Head on over to her site for lots more garden blogs and to view a vast array of October blooms.

Happy gardening to all bloom day participants ... and visitors! Meems


  1. I'm not a fan of orange either, yet I do have a few orange blooms myself. And I like yours! And that blue ginger is really something!
    Happy GBBDay!

  2. What a tropical paradise, Meems . I always get green with envy when I visit your garden :-)

    I have a tendency toward orange and yellow for their warmth and blue and purple for the coolness.

  3. Meems, such a lot blooming in your gardens. The scarlet milkweed looks a lot like our butterfly weed-a type of milk weed. And any time you want you go ahead with the back stories. I enjoy hearing about your plants. Glad it has cooled off for you. We had high of 80's this last week so I am looking forward to a little cool down too.

  4. Your photos can make a gardener swoon! :-) I used to avoid orange, but since I started butterfly gardening, I've learned to like it since I use hot colors in that area. Blue and orange...great combo! Cameron

  5. After I look at your blog I always feel as though I have seen a piece of paradise. Very lovely..

  6. Great blooms, I love the picture you took of the plumbago. The days are getting cooler here and South Florida but the rain continues everyday

  7. Lovely tropical blooms Meems. Thos elephant ears are tremendous. I have a black one that will surely die this winter. I don't have luck bringing them inside for the winter. Too bad I couldn't pass it along to you. It laid down a leaf and it took root this summer. I didn'tknow they would do that. I thought they came from the bulb that doubled in the ground. One always discovers new information in the garden.

  8. Hi Meems,
    Thank you for visiting my new blog. I am having such fun looking at all the lovely gardens, and yours is full of plants that I would love to be able to grow, but can't here in Nebraska.

    I am going to have to finish looking at the GBBD photos tomorrow, though. How long does it take you, and most people to get through them?


  9. Meems, We think of your garden flowers as exotic when they are just your garden flowers! Beautifully photographed flowers, I might add. I was looking at several that caught my eye~~ the Lantana with her friend and the Ixorra...both lovely. My favorite name is Diplademia. Don't know why, unless it is because it sounds like a dinosaur and dinosaurs always remind me of my son as a little boy;-) You probably will have dinosaurs in your future with that cutie pie who spends time in your garden.

    Thank you the beautiful bloom show and for allowing me to wander off into memory land! have a wonderful day tomorrow in your garden! gail

  10. Hi Meems, oh yes, the moon has been fabulous! I enjoyed it from my mom's place in Wisconsin last weekend.

    They put out their meat scraps in a spot way behind the garden for the foxes that live there, and I watched a little fox dance in the moonlight back there on our last night. It was awesome.

    So glad you've gotten relief from the heat and humidity there.

    I often think I'm not a fan of orange, but this year I've realized how much I actually do like it, and have seen it combined nicely even with some pinks, which sort of startled me at first! I love it with blues and purples too. I think orange will be making its way into my garden next spring.

    Your garden is gorgeous - how lucky you are being able to enjoy it year 'round. Imagine. . . fall tomatoes, and impatiens all summer. . . amazing!

    Have fun hanging out with your grandson!

  11. oops, impatiens all winter, that is!

  12. Oh, I do like orange and I enjoy mixing it with purple. Crazy??

    My favorite blooms today in your garden are the Pagoda plants, blue ginger and the Ixora coccinea. I'm not sure I have seen these before and they are lovely. Is the blue ginger related to the white ginger that smells heavenly?

  13. Hope you have time to stop by and pick up your gift.

  14. Happy Bloom Day, Meems- hope you get lots of tomatoes from the second crop.

    I like orange, but think my blue Clerodendrum ugandese is prettier than your orange variety. On the other hand, if you're in a REgifting mood, that Orange Hibiscus is gorgeous!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  15. You have so many lovely blooms. Love the African iris on the side bar. Love your autumn wreath too.

    Your beautiful plants are annuals or house plants in my zone. It is so nice to see them achieving the size and structure they are supposed to have when grown in a garden instead of a small pot.

  16. Indeed, the moon has been mesmerizing these last few nights in Gainesville (FL). Thanks for posting the nice shots of pagoda plant. I recently discovered this beauty and can't wait to put it in my garden. I was happy to read on your older post that it propagates easily. Thanks!

  17. meems,

    I just saw a beautiful yellow sage..Forsythia Sage or Salvia madrensis at our botanical gardens. It was in a small garden and was quite tall. It was obviously the architectural focus. It is magnificent and I immediately wondered if you have this beauty?


  18. Hi Meems, you have the most beautiful flowers, and cute bees too! Glad to hear the plumbago is allowed to be all it can be at your garden, that is what it deserves. I love the color of the ixia, they were grown in Houston but I never tried them. Your blue ginger is fantastic also. Monarchs all year, what a treat! Thanks for keeping the bloom day alive for those of us who will begin losing their flowers slowly but surely.


  19. Katarina, Happy GBBD and Birthday to you. I have found that orange is a nice accent especially in the autumn garden.

    Carolyn Gail, Thank you... to tell you the truth I probably use every imaginable color in my garden... somewhere... some more than others but I do love color.

    beckie, I am a talker and I do like back stories but for GBBD we have to make it around to so many blogs don't we? 80's is a big relief here at this point... and the air is so much drier it has been very pleasant all week long.

    Cameron, what a nice thing to say. It is always a treat to come look at your great photos, too. Come to think of it that orange lantana is right behind the blue plumbago.

    Darla, paradise? Wow. Probably not but it is my little piece of heaven. Thank you... and thank you for the gift.

    Rusty, I've noticed on the weather map ya'll are getting steady rains. We could use more frequent rain... send some this way please.

  20. Lisa, My neighbor gave me the elephant ears (very small at the time)about 5 years ago. I stuck it away in the middle of one of my oak tree islands and never paid much attention to it and it didn't do much. Just a couple of months ago I moved it to the shallow bowl container where it gets a little more sun and it has grown like crazy. I am very happy with it... I just love looking at its strong and broad leaves... have I said that a few times already? lol

    I didn't know that about the black either... very interesting.

    Sue, Thanks for coming by.It does take a while to make it around to all the posts but it sure is an education in climates and gardens to visit the GBBD participants.

    Dearest Gail, I will answer your follow-up comment first. I'm sorry to say after looking up the salvia you saw today, that I do not grow it here. I don't even recall ever seeing it... anywhere. You can believe I will have my eye out for it now though. Thanks for the tip... it is oh, so unique.

    Now onto that Diplademia. It is also known as Mandevilla and I can't for the life of me find out from any credible source why it goes by both names. And actually both names are quite fun to pronounce. When I think about it - it could easily pass for a dinosaur name. Our oldest grandson (now 10) was quite enthralled with dinosaurs when he was younger. Already, I like to be reminded of days gone by with him. Thanks for that.

    I didn't get to be 'in' my garden much today except for watering veggies and playing in the back yard. My little one is with me for 4 days while his parents are out of town. But he and I did make a trip to the garden center to pick up a few goodies for autumn planting. He loves to wander around there with me. Hope you are enjoying your evening... I just realized I haven't been around to see your blooms yet. Be over in a bit.

    Linda, I can just imagine the delight of seeing the little fox in the light of the moon.
    I'm finding that the spots of orange I do have are actually just enough to be useful as a highlight. The impatiens actually get to 3 and 4 feet tall here when grown under the oak trees. I do trim them back this time of year mostly because they perk right back up in this kind of weather.

    My little one is keeping me hopping but what a joy he is to have day and night for a few days. I hope you get to make it out to see yours soon.

    Susie, I like the mixture of orange and purple too. For flowers that is... not in clothing or anything else I can think of... just wanted to clarify that. LOL

    There are so many different gingers... I have only about 6 different kinds and I don't think I know about white ginger but you've got me curious... do you know anything else about it that could help me know what it is???

  21. Annie, If you'd been available when I received the orange hibiscus I'd have happily passed it along. I received it from a lady at my church who had won it in a drawing and she knew she would kill it if she took it home. It's actually kind of fun to have and it is blooming its head off right now... go figure.

    Ironically, I JUST THIS WEEK planted some cuttings of Clerodendrum ugandese I had been rooting. My painting teacher gave me several a few weeks ago. Hers were 6 feet tall so I put them at the back of the property for starters. We'll see how they fare there. I surely hope they don't re-seed like all the other clerodendrums.

    Marnie: Thanks for visiting my side bar. The wreath was a new arrangement I put together this year. The African Iris is an easy plant for all year even when it's not blooming. I realize many of the tropicals are grown indoors in so many other climates. It is surely one of the things I LOVE about coastal Florida.

    Kim, the pagoda plant propagates a little too easily. It isn't supposed to be invasive like the glory bower but I have to warn you, I pull up seedlings all the time as it is threatening to take over that entire island planting. Still--- if you have big spaces, you will enjoy its steady bloom and magnificently large (very large)heart-shaped leaves.

    Frances, I am so glad I planted the plumbago where it can be left mostly natural. Even still I have to trim it a couple of times during the summer. They are standing at 5 or so feet right now after two trimmings. Some folks down here make the mistake of planting them next to their house in front of windows... yikes. The blue ginger is a favorite and never have I seen it for sale in our area. My neighbor gave it to me last year - she brought it up from S. FL when she moved here. The blooms have surprisingly lasted for over 6 weeks.

  22. hey meems,
    have been busy getting ready for estee' and grace's arrival. they will be here on sunday. i worked in the yard all day in the rain and am very sore but i finally got one crepe myrtle planted today.
    anyway your blooms are so amazing and beautiful. i never really liked orange until this year but i have enjoyed it in zinnias.
    you have so many wonderful plants,
    love the ginger,the orange hibiscus,of course the plumbago,the scarlett milkweed.
    happy to hear you are getting the right weather and sun for your new veggies.

  23. Is the anthurium a miniature variety? The leaves look like it but in the photo the plant doesnt look so.
    Guess what I found? A whole patch of mostly-red caladiums growing in a neighbouring plot that we bought some months back. I dont go there much so finding this was a real surprise and I immediately thought of you.
    Your blue ginger is gorgeous!

  24. Your entries are beautiful.
    Was led to you through Gail's site.
    You are so talented. Both of you do what I did a few years ago.
    Now on a small lot to be near grandchildren and children. Blessings to you this day.

  25. Meems, The ginger lily I spoke of is officially called Hedychium coronarium. It is tropical, grows 4-5' tall, white blooms and smells heavenly.

  26. Wow! You have a wonderful blog: I love all the photos: especially of the plumbago. I've always admired its blue flows (after all, I am a hydrologist, blue is my favorite color).

    I've bookmarked it in my reader, and will probably add it to my blog roll. After all, plants need rain to grow ... and rain needs plants to cushion the fall!

  27. Heh--send me them orange blooms! I likes orange, put doan allow no purple! An wow--ya make lantana look so purty! I'se old enough to think of it as a weed, but now they sells it!

    I left ya a note on yore post, Saturday at Home about the blue pea vines.

  28. Meems, this is indeed the orange and red season - and your blooms support that! I can't see the details on elephant ears but my black ones are Alocasia esculenta 'Black Magic'

  29. Your pics make me absolutely drool. Lovely colours. And I love orange and yellow and pink and purple and, and.....everything in the garden. Lucky you to be able to garden all year round.

  30. Meems, your post is lovely. So enjoy visiting, learning, and saying, yes, gardening is good ;)

  31. Oh, Meems...these are so beautiful, they make my heart sing. NO wonder people flock to your part of the US in late fall and winter, getting a dose of floral goodness along with sun and sand!

  32. marmee, I think I stay perpetually sore and so I don't notice it anymore... lol. I'm trying to remember if I had any orange zinnias back when they were blooming... there were so many colors ... I will take a look at photos to see. Have fun with your precious visitors... give them a hug for me.

    Sunita: I am touched you thought of me when you discovered the caladiums... I guess they are kind of my moniker. I'm not sure about the anthurium. I bought it at the the big box store originally and kept it indoors for almost a year. It has grown quite a bit in the six weeks it has been outdoors... I guess we'll find out as it gets older. It immediately started to put out blooms when it went outdoors, too.

    One Woman: So glad you popped over from my friend, Gail's. I often wonder if I'll ever let hubby talk me into a smaller plot.(he's trying)Fortunately our grandchildren are right here close by. One of them is sleeping in the crib right down the hall from me now. He's been here for four days while his parents are out of town. If they didn't live near me --- I'd probably move to get near them, too. Blessings to you.

    Susie: Thanks for coming back to help me out with that ID. I know now you are speaking of the sister to what I DO have loads of... mine is variegated ginger lily and it has an even more interesting bloom IMHO. I've chose to use the variegated because it adds so much color and interest against the other "greens" in my shady garden.
    I just remembered you can see some of it in my header right now.

  33. Robert: Thank you. I'm glad you liked the plumbago photos... and I always thought water was clear??? What an interesting job you have!

    Aunty: I didn't even have lantana in my garden for the very reason you stated until a few short years ago. As you know, we still see it growing profusely on the side of the road. These are all hybrids we have around here. Although this deeply orange hued one is acting like a weed these days.

    Thank you for the other comment... I will answer to it also as soon as I'm caught up here.

  34. Mary Beth, I do love the autumn colors and down here we have to make autumn fit into what we can since we don't have any season changes. sigh.

    My elephant ear is not black magic, I DO have one that's similar but it's called midnight. The one featured here subtly eggplant colored on the underside as well as the stalks and veins... it is quite unique... I would love to know the name of it.

    Wendy: Welcome and drooling is something I do frequently whenever I see pretty flowers. Thank you for the kind words. I'm a big fan of all colors in a garden, too.

    Joey: Always happy to have to stop by with your sweet words and kind heart. Blessings and thank you.

    Jodi: Hey! You made me think ... Wild Thing for some reason :-)Thanks for dropping in way down here in the south. It's been a little while. You can't imagine how many folks are here in the winter for our sun and ... more sun I think. I have to admit it is a great place to be.

  35. What a beautiful site! You have a lovely garden I could spend the whole day in it. I would love to add your blog to my site if that is ok with you.

  36. Islandgal: What a nice thing to say. Today is undoubtedly the nicest day we've had since spring in terms of weather. It is only 80 degrees and no humidity. I imagine your island to be like this year round???

    I would be tickled for you to add my site to your blog.

  37. That's a beautiful garden you have there, Meems. We are going to need you to post about your blooms all winter so we don't lose heart here in the Midwest.

    Thanks for joining in for bloom day.
    Carol, May Dreams Gardens

  38. I echo your sentiments on orange, but like you, end up loving the blooms in spite of that.
    Yes, the moon was fabulous. I love seeing the garden under a full moon...even when there are very few blooms (none out there now!).
    I'm drooling over your caladiums, plumbago, ginger..everything! What a wonderful garden!
    I share your propensity for words. I too have a hard time being brief :) I enjoy all your details!
    Your photos are beautiful. Especially love seeing the butterflies and other creatures. Enjoy your wonderful fall weather. Wish we had your temps!
    Thanks for the visit :)


Have a blessed day,

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