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While shopping at a local nursery this past spring, I decided to satisfy my urge to start seeds despite my northeast facing apartment with meager late winter sun.  As you can see, my perseverance paid off with this stunning purple Morning Glory  that catches the sunlight better than a stained glass window. I started a packet each of Morning Glory and Moonflower seeds to grow on the railing of my apartment balcony.  The idea was to have the Morning Glory color during the day and Moonflowers to grace the evening hours.  While the Moonflower vines are quite profuse in growth, they are not living up to their promising name of nighttime flora.  The Morning Glory is shorter in growth but most definitely has a better show.

The photo above is from very early April. The four cells to the left are the Moonflower vines (with bigger leaves) and the four cells to the right are the Morning Glory plants(leggy seedling with small leaves).  Once they grew larger, and the outside temperatures rose above frost danger, they were moved to the balcony to flourish.  Hopefully by the end of the summer the moonflowers will produce the show they are supposed to!  Stay tuned for that event.

Moral of the story: patience pays off in horticulture!

Article and photography by lilyofthevalley for Jeffrey Erb Landscape Design.

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Seed Pod of Cytisus Scoparius

There is more to gardening than showy Geraniums and pink Petunias. Daylilies have their spotlight too, but someone needs to tell them to get off the stage. My favorite part of gardening is that you can eventually look past the showstopping floriferous spectacles and see the smaller details of plants that are often overlooked. Sometimes these details are the way the veins are colored in a leaf, or the presence of inconspicuous flower structures on evergreen shrubs. This seed pod appeared about 4 weeks ago on some Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius) on a rooftop. It is a small fuzzy seed pod with a beautiful bluish tinge. When I saw it, I realized I have never noticed the pod on this plant before. I also saw these all over Fire Island last weekend.  The shape of it reveals it is in the Leguminosae family. That’s right, this plant is in them same nitrogen fixating family of plants along with peas and beans.  Tomorrow morning when you are sipping your coffee on the terrace, take an extra minute to find something new.

       

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