Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Foliage Follow-Up

Fox Tail? Fern

Last month, Pam at Digging asked us to show our foliage the day after Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, in a Foliage Follow-Up.  Here, at Patchwork Garden, there are few blooms, but lots of foliage.

Some foliage is in sad shape, since the several freezes and frosts, we've had the past few weeks.  One, was a recording setting hard freeze.  Something we didn't expect here in Central Texas, this early in the season.  But, there are plants that just hang in there, no matter what the weather does.

We have several Eleagnus bushes, along the side of the house.  They're on the sunniest side, and came through the hot, dry summer quite well....and, as you can see, the cold, as well.

Nandina, sometimes known as Heavenly Bamboo, is considered an invasive plant here.  And, it can be.  I might not have planted these, myself.  But, they were here when we came.  And, the deer leave them alone.

I actually like the look of them.  They are evergreen, have good fall color..if they get more sun than mine do..and those great, red berries.  So, ours will stay.

There is one of these, in the front bed.  We've decided it's some kind of Viburnum.  There were tiny, white flowers in the, there are these tiny mauve berries.  Not, showy, but pretty.  It was here when we got here, too.  Along with a boxwood hedge.  Things I wouldn't have put there, but...the deer don't eat them.  And, they've been here quite a while.  So, they'll have to stay.

Another good plant in deer country, is Lamb's Ear.  They don't like the fuzzy texture.  They don't like gray plants much.

Like Dusty Miller.  There will be more of these plants, scattered around the gardens, outside the fenced area.  They're nice, and as deer proof as it gets.

Asparagus Fern is another one the deer don't bother.  I like the way these put on little red berries.  The picture at the top of the post is supposed to be Fox Tail Fern.  I don't think it is.  But, the deer leave it alone, anyway.

Sago Palms are all over the neighborhood.  The deer don't eat them either.  They can grow to be quite large.  The cold has 'burned' quite a few leaves on these, but they should be all right.  They'll just look a bit sad, until new growth comes in the spring.

I like Liriope.  I know it can sometimes be over used.  But, I like the way it falls over paths and even in containers.  Everygreen, and pretty hardy during cold.  I've scattered some along the dry creek in the fenced yard.  I'd love some outside the fence.  But, the deer like to chomp it.  They don't eat it to the ground, but they do it damage.

Maybe Heuchera doesn't really qualify as a foliage plant.  But, the leaves are the reason I bought this one. 

Does a barrel cactus qualify?  This one may bloom, but it's here because of it's structure and....foliage.

This aloe 'Grassy Lassie', is supposed to be safe down to 15 degrees.  But, it goes in and out, when a freeze is predicted.

My neighbor thinned out some of her cactus, and gave me some....actually, enough to share with my daughter-in-law.  I started a dish garden.

The one she gave me the most of, is...I think...Optunia microdasys.  A common name is Honey Bunny.  See the bunny ears?

I bought a small dish garden, to get this.  No one could tell what it was.  I think it's an aloe.

And, this little succulent.  I'd really like to know what they are, and how hardy they are.  I cover them, when it's going to be really cold.

I have quite a bit of the Angelina sedum.  The deer like it, so it's up high or inside a fence.

This Croton will be spending the winter in the guest room window.

There are more foliage plants out there....a bicolor iris (I hope survived the freeze), Texas Sage, boxwood...and the evergreen, vinca groundcover.  And, of course, the Live Oaks and Cedars.

And, up in the trees, or anywhere else it can hold on, is the Ball Moss.  There is some argument about whether it harms trees or not.  I can't see damage where it is in the trees around here.  I kind of like it.  I think of it as foliage. 

In fact, I made a wreath of it, to hang on the veggie fence.

It adds a little color out there, for the season.

So, that's what we have here at Patchwork Garden.  What kind of foliage do you have?

Be sure the visit Pam at Digging, to see other Foliage Follow-ups.


  1. What a cute idea for the ball moss! I've heard that ball moss doesn't hurt the trees but shows up where trees are already hurting (sounds strange but it just means the trees are under some kind of stress; for example, you'll see a lot of them in trees where cows sleep or stand under them). I agree with you that your first fern doesn't really look like a foxtail. Maybe a shorter version of the Asparagus fern?? I've got a photo of my foxtail in my Foliage Follow-up post (although it's a bit of a close up). Like your Bloom Day pansies too!

  2. Honey Bunny, Grassy Lassie--who could resist plants named so appealingly? Not me. Your mystery aloe may be a dyckia, but I'm not sure. It's one or the other.

    Love your ball moss wreath---and I'm not even a fan of ball moss. Now that's a central Texas Christmas for you!

    Thanks for participating, Linda.

  3. We've kept one nandina that came with the house but try to keep it under control with frequent pruning. Nandinas do have quite a few appealing qualities (including drought tolerance), don't they?

  4. Hi, everyone.

    Jean...I think you're right. Seeing your fox tail fern...that is not what I have.
    The ball moss will live on power lines. It's not really a parasite, like mistletoe. I'm hoping it's not a sign that the trees are in's on all of them, here.

    Pam...I thought, too, maybe that could be dyckia. I like to have labels on things, but there were none.
    The ball moss is everywhere here. The wrens love the little seed heads.

    Iris...I think nandinas could live through most things. They're tough.

  5. I love your wreath, it's so adorable! How did you work that? I don't know ball moss so I have no idea what it is like. Does it lend itself to stuffing into frame or do you have to glue or tie the stuff on? Very cute and very country.
    I had to laugh at every item that was followed by "deer leave it alone." I couldn't stop thinking about your pretty new fence just to keep the beggers out of your garden. What a huge hassle.

  6. I love the plants you have growing. We grow many of the same....aloes, golden barrel cactus, Sago, asparagus fern, heavenly bamboo. What I love most is what I see rarely here...lamb's ear and dusty miller.

  7. Hi.
    The ball moss, looks kind of like those 'air plants' you see stuck to driftwood, sometime. I guess you could do that with it. As I said, it even grows on power lines, in clumps. I have it stuck in a wire wreath form, that has clamp things you can close over whatever you have. No glue, or wiring.

    Does lamb's ear and dusty miller not grow well out there? They're good drought resistant plants for here...with the bonus that deer don't like them. The lamb's ear does like some afternoon shade, though.

  8. The ball moss is an air plant, like the tillandsia. If the ball moss is green, the moisture in the air is good for your bromiliads and orchids. If it is gray, they will need watering, or misting.

    I am thinking your first picture may be a foxtail that needs something. A mineral maybe or some certain nutrient. I have seen them like that and that is usually the deal. Maybe you could dope it up with a good dose of manure tea (when it gets warmer, of course), and see what happens. The thing I thought originally was that it is a sprengeri, but maybe not.

    I love the huchera foliage. And I love that wreath. LOL


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