Russian Sunflower

The Russian Sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius) is a very valuable plant for the garden because it blooms in the fall. It mixes well with ornamental grasses because it likes full sun and tolerates poor soil and dryness. The flowers are like small daisies in large clusters at the top of a 6′ – 8′ plant so…

The Beauty of Winter

With the coming of the rain and cold weather people don’t get outside as much and they miss the beauty of winter. Here are a few photos of plants at Dawn Gardens in the winter. Trunk and bark of the Strawberry Tree (Arbutus ‘Marina’) Winter foliage and winter bouquet of Hydrangeas. Mexican Sage (Salvia Leucantha…

Progression of Fall Color

This blog will be a sequence of photos showing the progression of the changing of the fall colors from week to week on certain selected plants at Dawn Gardens. October 20 October 27 November 3 Weeping Cherry October 13 October 27 November 3 November 10 November 17 Japanese Maples October 13 October 20 October 27…

Mondo Grass and Liriope

Liriope and Ophiopogon are tough shade plants often used as ground covers in the garden. Mondo Grass (Ophiopogon japonicus) is a dark green grass like plant that is actually in the lily family. It creeps slowly with underground rhizomes becoming a dense shade loving groundcover. It can get 6” tall and has purplish flowers rarely….

Fall Leaves

This is the time of the year that has the most color at Dawn Gardens. The thousands of Daffodil flowers in the Spring can’t compare to the millions of colorful leaves in November. Red Split Leaf Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Crimson Queen’) Green Split Leaf Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Dissectum’) Smoke Tree (Cotinus ‘Grace’) Pacific…

Oak Root Fungus

Oak root fungus is a common root problem of ornamental plants. It is a common cause for the death of trees and shrubs. The scientific name is Armillaria mellea and the visible signs are mushrooms growing around the base of the plants or on the main roots.   The mushrooms appear in the late fall…

Grey Plants

Grey plants are usually drought tolerant because they reflect the light and don’t get as hot as other plants so they don’t need as much water. Grey Leaved Groundcovers: Tanacetum densum ssp. amani Artemisia versicolor ‘Sea Foam’ Silene uniflora ‘Druetts Variegated’. Many of the variegated plants like this one have a grey effect in the…

Irrigation of a Large Garden

During the hot months of summer a lot of water is required to keep a large garden looking good. Fortunately Dawn Gardens has an inexpensive source of water from a canal about a mile away. The canal delivers water to an 8” pipe through stainless steel filtering screens to homeowners in Iron Mountain Estates and…

Rock Gardens

  As I get older I realize that it will be harder and harder to maintain a large garden. Rock gardens are becoming more interesting to me because you can fit a lot of plants into a small place. Rock garden plants are smaller or slower growing plants that are placed close together with rocks…

Interesting Plants

There are many plants in Dawn Gardens that are interesting and unusual. I am a plant collector at heart and have plants that have unusual flowers, leaves, bark, fruit or roots. Here are a few of them: Beautyberry (Callicarpa bodinieri)   Double Clematis (Clematis ‘Multi Blue’)   Deutzia ‘Pink-a-Boo’   Pink Leaved Beech (Fagus sylvatica…