Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Alternathera who?

Sorry I haven't posted in a couple weeks.  We had the LA Geranium show, Mother's Day and I just came back from San Diego for the California State Button Society's show.   On my drive back to LA, I stopped at two nurseries;  Walter Andersen Nursery in SD and Weidner's Nursery in Encinitas. Walter Anderson is a very nice big nursery with a huge selection.  Weidner's is smaller than it used to be but still has some interesting things.  Of course I brought home a few plants.  At Weidner's I bought a plant I'd never seen called Alternathera Hoja del Loro or Brazillian Red Hots.

 Alternathera is a mouthful, I know. Say ALL-tur-NATH-ur-uh.  Easy!  I've always loved colored foliage because they look great against all that is green.  I have two other Alternatheras; A. Purple Knight and A. Red Threads.  I'm on my 2nd Purple Knight as I lost my first in the frost two years ago.  It gets those little straw colored flowers in winter that look like Gomphrena.  I don't love those flowers but they're almost gone. This photo looks a little washed out. The foliage is really burgundy purple.

Red Threads has grown so much that I've divided it, spread it around my garden and shared some with a friend.  

   Mine do best in partial shade.  We have a big Deodar Cedar on the east side near our front door as you can see by the needle mulch that is everywhere!   These pants are super easy and grow well with a little pinching on the Purple Knight. I already pinched the new one to make it bushier.  I hope my new acquisition grows well.  I bought two just in case and planted them in the garden today.  

You might try some colored foliage plants in your garden.

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