By Brandi Eide
Summer is often when many plants take a break and enter into dormancy, conserving water and slowing down in the heat.
With around 5,000 different taxa from many geographic regions, our diverse plant collection features showstoppers and inspiring vignettes throughout the Garden each season.The months of summer are no exception, and several of the predictable bloomers are accompanied by delightfully pleasing scents.
Plumeria sp. and Gardenia thunbergia, Wild Gardenia, blooms fill the air and beckon for a closer encounter.
Brugmansia sp., Angel’s Trumpets and Datura wrightii, Devil’s Trumpets are closely related plants in the nightshade family. Both have large, trumpet-shaped blooms; many release their scent near dusk, sometimes lingering into the morning. It is quite an experience to witness Datura flowers opening. Bring a chair, wait until near sunset, and if it is quiet, the gentle popping open of petals may be heard before they slowly unfurl. Luck may present some impatient pollinators awaiting the same event.
Looking up into the tree canopy along Quail Gardens Drive, the Corymbia ficifolia, Red Flowering Gum, you’ll find are adorned with varying shades of neon orange, pink and reds.
You’re likely to notice the large and beautifully bright yellow flowers of Thevetia thevetioides, Giant Thevetia, on the ground near the Lawn Garden before seeing the plant itself.
Chilopsis linearis with orchid-like flowers ranging from white to deep pink, and Tecoma sp. with clusters of yellow, orange or red flowers, both bloom prolifically with the heat of summer. Once these are established in your garden, they are extremely drought tolerant.
Summer is the perfect time to explore the Rainforest and Bamboo Garden. These shady spots are refreshing to visit on warm days. The sounds of flowing water and the incredible assortment of bird songs are always a delightful respite.
With so many interesting nooks and unique plants, there isn’t a day in the Garden where something doesn’t provoke further attention and deserve a closer look.
See YOU in the Garden!