Wednesday, July 18, 2012


I had been lusting after this water lily (N. ‘Wanvisa’) at Hughes Water Gardens for a while.

I went earlier in the spring and first noticed it, but I didn't buy it at the time (what was I thinking?!?).

A few weeks passed and I was still lusting after it. I went back one day because I was depressed and needed some retail plant therapy. I was wondering through the hardy water lily house only to find that they were all gone!

I wandered around looking at other plants, kicking myself for not buying it earlier when I would have had pick of the litter.

I wasn't going to give up, so I asked a clerk if they had any others and fortunately for me, she knew there was one in an area away from the usual place.

N. ‘Wanvisa’

I scooped it up as fast as I could!  Boy am I glad! 

N. ‘Wanvisa’
N. ‘Wanvisa’

N. ‘Wanvisa’

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Hummingbird Crack

I just can't say enough good things about Lobelia tupa (aka Tobacco del Diablo) or as I call it "Hummingbird Crack." 

Here in Portland, it emerges in spring and can be 7-8 feet tall by the end of summer. The plant itself stays only a few feet tall, but the flower spikes get quite tall over time.  It does have a nice coarse texture which is a nice contrast to other plants too and it enjoys its home in hot full sun.

In fall, I just let it die back and then cover the crown with bark for the winter. It does leave a big hole in the flowerbed when it is sleeping though as it takes up a lot of room when growing.

The Hummers are very territorial in my yard and fight over this plant constantly.  There is one that has a lookout in a neighboring Camellia and will fight off any other Hummer that comes near it.

I'm 6'2", the blooms get very tall by September.