Far Out Flora

Badass Bromeliad Society Tour

July 19, 2013 by Megan Speckmann | 5 Comments


Bromeliads gone wild

Last weekend we hit up the SF Bromeliad Society’s super rad garden tour AND busted out the good old DSLR for the first time in almost a year. All the tour gardens were AMAZING! Brian Ransom’s garden pictured above and a whole bunch of pics below was my fave of the fab bunch. Anyone who mixes succulents, CA natives and bros rocks.

Brian’s garden

Zoe & Matti getting up close

Brian’s garden

Thunbergia & Tillandsia buddies on the fence

Seriously? How great is this?

Stags and more

The second garden we visited was by Armin Lindegger and Patrick Aaron. Love this vertical combo with the stags.

Babies like gardens!

Zoe was a good little trooper as we (mostly Matti) carried her all over the upper Market Street neighborhood. Check out those beautiful tree ferns in the background!

Anigozanthos love

Anigozanthos love

Hot tub garden

The last garden we visited was Richard Wigen’s. I wish I had a hot tub across from a big pile of awesome potted plants. Check out the trunk on that Aloe plicatilis!

Matti & Zoe hiding in the Senecio cristobalensis on the right

Musschia wollastonii maybe

Musschia wollastonii maybe

Can anyone confirm the ID on this guy about to burst with blooms? Looks like Muschia wollastonii to me.

Pretty path

Pretty path

Kniphofia, Verbena bonariensis, a ginormo Aloe plicatilis plus a bunch of other good stuff makes a gorgeous path. Zoe turned in to a pumpkin by the time the potluck started, so we missed out on the very last garden. It’s great to be back in California, surrounded by crazy awesome gardens filled with plants that most of the country can only grow as annuals or houseplants. Check out this link for all the sweet pics we took during the trip.

Super SF Botanical Garden

March 23, 2013 by Megan Speckmann | 6 Comments

Puya alpestris

We couldn’t miss out on the SF Botanical Garden when we were back in town for a visit. I think the Puya alpestris pictured above is blooming right now, so you should go check it out. Check out our blog about the Puya insanity at SFBG last year.

Zoe & the Kniphofias

Zoe loves traveling around in the Ergo. It’s pretty amazing to be able to nurse and walk around looking at plants without anything hanging out.

Aloe busting out of a rock wall

Aloe plicatilis

The CA Native section was starting to get all flowery.


Sweet SF Botanical Garden

June 23, 2011 by Megan Speckmann | 7 Comments

Verbascum 'Letitia' looking cute

I’m still a little lame about my total lack of plant names from Ruth Bancroft Garden, so I’m going to try and redeem myself with plants with botanical names from a couple visits to SF Botanical Garden over the last two weeks. In late April I graduated as an official docent, so once a month you’ll find me wearing a really cool apron next to a table (interpretive station) getting excited about plants. So far it’s been super fun.

Who the heck knew Verbascum came in a cute little shortie form? It’s going nuts in the cool rock garden circle at the main gate. While googling ‘Letitia’ I came across a cool little online nursery I’ve never been to before that specializes in rockery plants Wrightman Alpines. Check it out, lots of cool shorty plants, and interesting stuff.

Primula vialii

Bizarro, I just looked up Primula vialii and I think this is some sort of mutant flower. They’re supposed to be pointy on top instead of flat. It looks like the flower crested. Also called fasciation, here’s what wikipedia has to say about this freaky plant happening: “Fasciation (or cresting) is a condition of plant growth in which the apical meristem, normally concentrated around a single point, producing approximately cylindrical tissue, becomes elongated perpendicularly to the direction of growth, producing flattened, ribbon-like, crested, or elaborately contorted tissue. The phenomenon may occur in the stem, root, fruit, or flower head.” Our graptopetalums do it all the time.

California Native paradise

Phacelia, Layia platyglossa, Gilia tricolor and the poppies were going nuts last weekend in the native garden. It’s looking pretty awesome.

Wachendorfia thrysiflora

Gotta love the South African section. I’m strangely fascinated by Wachendorfia thrysiflora. It’s huge!

Kniphofias in yellow

There’s lots of Kniphofia action going on right now. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that our Kniphofia northiae will bloom this summer. It’s getting pretty big and popping out babies.

Salvia africana-lutea

This might sound crazy, but we haven’t jammed a Salvia in our backyard yet. I think this might be the one. It’s common name is “Beach Salvia”, and as it ages the flowers turn deeper orange and then brown. It doesn’t mind hanging out next to the foggy, wind infested coast (I’m a little bitter about the fog and it being 57 degrees at 5:30PM). Summer is not my favorite season in San Francisco. We live in the foggiest (cheapest) part of town.

Matti and the Mega Bartlettina sordida

Wholly gigantoid ageratum like monster!!!! Bartlettina sordida is native to cloud forests. As much as I bitch about the fog, I really should appreciate the amazing plants we’re able to grow that ONLY thrive in our cool summers and mild winters. More pics from Strybing are here if ya want to check them out.