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Author Topic: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California  (Read 10182 times)

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #90 on: September 17, 2022, 08:14:48 PM »


I recently reacquired Salvia sinaloensis. This species also appears to be a viable parent with other Meso-American/South American Salvia species. Viable hybrid seed appears to have been set. We will see if it indeed the hybrid seed germinates and the resulting plants grow well.



I grow Salvia splendens from seed and enjoy tall growing plants. This Salvia splendens is already a meter tall.



Salvia praeclara is another species that I grow from seed. I am currently selecting forms that are tolerant of extreme heat, winter cold, flower profusely, and have an excellent habit of growth.



There are many forms of Salvia coccinea, white through pink, to red. This species readily sets seed in our garden, however the Gold Finches like to eat the seed. To harvest seed it is necessary to bag the flower heads before the Gold Finches find the seed.



I have given a provisional name to this advanced generation Erythranthe hybrid. This variety has an acceptable habit of growth and blooms continuously all summer. This variety continued to bloom through our recent heat wave. I will conduct additional trials and perhaps share a few plants with nearby gardening friends to see how well it performs in other situations.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #91 on: September 17, 2022, 08:18:37 PM »


Zephyranthes and Habranthus species do extremely well in our garden despite the extreme heat. Zephyranthes mesochloa blooms from mid summer into the autumn in our garden.



We have many new hybrids of both Zephyranthes and Habranthus coming along. A few F1 hybrids have started to bloom; however interesting forms are not likely to appear until the F2 generation of plants bloom. This F1 Habranthes robusta hybrid is not very interesting; however inbred F2 lines might show some interesting characteristics.



I am making good progress with our local native Viola species. Generally Viola macloskeyi suffers greatly from spider mites during hot, dry weather in our garden. This seedling not only survived the recent heat wave without becoming infested with spider mites, but it also continued to bloom. Viola macloskeyi might be a widespread and common species in cooler environments; however we are selecting forms that clearly do well in our garden.



Many Colchicum species are blooming in our garden. These were grown from seed as Colchicum corsicum and seem very happy in our garden.



Many autumn flowering Cyclamen are also blooming in our garden at this time.

So, despite the record shattering heat our garden continues to thrive. Some plant species died or have become crippled from the dramatic climatic shifts that are taking place in our region. With appropriate plant selection and creative breeding there are still an infinite number of gardening possibilities.

[Jasmin]:  We finally have the first reasonably comfortable weather:  Around 27 C!  There are predictions we might actually receive some rain, but we shall see.  Rain would be welcome, just not an extreme flood.  Too often we have witnessed these global extremes, climate going from severe drought to inundation.

Once the ground is moist, it will be easier to work the ground.  We have a number of plants—dahlias, salvias, and others—that will replace those lost or so severely maimed by weather changes.  Some plants that we have enjoyed for years and once were stupendously beautiful are making their farewell.  Some Robert lovingly bred and raised from seed:  I remember when they were nothing more than his vision, a seed capsule, a seed pan.  Some were gatherings from his hikes, or a cutting from dear friends now gone to God.  So these are no ordinary losses; they are beloved friends.  So, there will be a ceremony of the heart perhaps, to honor this; yet, the hope and enthusiasm of what will be, for we are truly excited for beauty to grace our world, and a beauty that our beloved bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and songbirds will also delight in.  Change is truly constant, and in welcoming it—although it is bittersweet—our experience of change can be resilient, kinder, and gentler.

P.S. The first clouds just arrived.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #92 on: September 24, 2022, 08:10:43 PM »


Our weather shifted in September from a period of extreme recorded breaking heat from 1 September to 9 September to a period of cool weather with some much needed rain. Currently the weather is quite pleasant; what we call “Indian Summer” with sunny warm days and cool nights.

The Sierra Nevada Mountains received the first high elevation snow of the season. Most of the snow fell above the 9,000 ft. (2,743 meters) level. My brother and I have been busy working at the Placerville property cutting and splitting firewood for the next few seasons and planting food crops for harvest this autumn, winter and spring.



On Friday, we decided to do something different and visit the Ebbetts Pass region in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.



We had a pleasant outing and I was able to take some photographs for the plants and beautiful scenery. Most of the plants were well into dormancy, however they were still interesting, at least to me. I will be posting some photographs from this outing over the next few weeks.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #93 on: October 02, 2022, 09:34:26 PM »
Currently Indian Summer type autumn weather continues in our region. It is a perfect time to plant autumn food crops. This is occupying a great deal of my time. In addition, part of my computer is malfunctioning. Until this is fixed, this slows posting considerably.



This is a view of Noble Canyon and the distant mountains from near the summit if Ebbetts Pass.



This is a view facing east across Noble Canyon.



After the stormy weather and snow at the higher elevations of the Sierra Nevada Mountains many of the high elevation plants were dormant and prepared for winter. Pictured is Holodiscus discolor.



Most of the rock in this region is Mehrten Formation Andesite, however there are some granite type rock formations (pictured). Some plants have specific preferences for soils derived from each rock formation.



Penstemon newberryi ssp. newberryi has a preference for soils derived from granite type rock formations.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

LoisRichter

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #94 on: July 04, 2023, 06:51:58 PM »
What's blooming in your yard these days?
My Satsuma plum tree set very little fruit this year because it was damp and cloudy almost every day that the blossoms were open; so very few bees got to pollinating.  I'd guess I have less than 10% of our usual crop.
Co-host of "Davis Garden Show", a radio streaming on KDRT.org; podcast on iTunes; archived at: https://kdrt.org/programs/davis-garden-show
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My SRGC diary: https://www.srgc.org.uk/forum/index.php?topic=8938.15

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #95 on: July 05, 2023, 04:18:49 PM »
Hi Lois,

Right now I am very busy at our Placerville farm. In addition, I am busy writing an extensive article for one of the journals. Excellent progress is being made, but there is a need to stay focused. I wish to put forth my best effort on this writing project and have it done in a timely way. I will get back to you in a few days.

Monardella breweri ssp. lanceolata is in full bloom right now and is looking great. This season we are having mixed results with our Pluots and Plums. Our Satsuma plum is still young but we do have some fruit. It will take a few more years before our orchard is back in good condition again. I was difficult to see the orchard decline, but now that caregiving is over the orchard is coming back strong. More on this progress later.

Remember when Phillips Farms sold fruit at the Farmers’ Market? I know that they sold at the Davis Farmers’ Market as well as under the W-X Freeway in Sacramento on Sundays. We did the W-X for decades. I am way too old for this stuff now. Now I ONLY grow for the family.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #96 on: July 08, 2023, 08:12:10 PM »
Hi Lois,

You can view the reply to your posting under the title “Robert’s and Jasmin’s Garden Paradise”. This is under the Blogs and Diaries subject heading, the second from the top.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: Plants, Ecosystems, Climate – Northern California
« Reply #97 on: August 11, 2023, 06:46:18 PM »


When I was out last week I came across a nice stand of Cardinal Monkeyflower, Erythranthe cardinalis, in full bloom. Over the years I have observed some variation in the number of open flowers each individual plant produces. The plants I encountered were about average for our region.



The flowers of Erythranthe cardinalis are an intense orange-red with a yellow throat.



The exciting find for the day was a very interesting stand of the annual species Diplacus viscidus.



The plants in this colony did not exactly match the type description for Diplacus viscidus. Nevertheless, the plants were extremely attractive!



Exploring the area further, I found these white flowering Diplacus. They best matched Diplacus viscidus but still did not match the type description. In addition, I am not aware of any documented white forms of Diplacus viscidus. Apparent hybrids between the pink and white forms were observed. A thorough search was made in the vicinity of these off-type plants. I never found any plants that completely matched the type description for Diplacus viscidus. It was very interesting that scattered plants of the white type were observed a considerable distance from the highest concentration of blooming plants.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2023, 06:51:18 PM by Robert »
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

 


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