When September rolls around, it’s time to plant! 🙂
Up north, I’d go nuts tracking down unique bulbs, then race the clock to get them in-ground before the sneaky first frost arrived. Here it’s a bit more leisurely: if something doesn’t grow (or look) as expected, you can replace it with something else a few months later. I’m constantly moving plants around and taking chances with the exotic and unusual. My latest experiment is this variegated form of the standard Amicia Zygomeris, a woody perennial from Mexico with a downright crazy common name: Gotta Pea:
As you might have guessed, A. zygomeris is a moderately hardy member of the pea family (zones 7b-10.) It has heart shaped leaves and unusual half-moon stipules gradating from purple to green.
In autumn, clumps of yellow flowers open along short racemes, as seen in this botanical drawing:
Seven years ago, John Tuite, a nurseryman from England, noticed a variegated shoot growing among his standard Gotta Peas. In his own words, “I am especially interested in propagating plants that develop variegation or a different colour break and have introduced several new plants over the years if they prove to keep their distinctive foliage reliably when grown in the garden over time”
Tuite propagated and nurtured his single plant into several more, which he passed along to Bob Brown, a friend and variegation specialist from Cotswold Garden Flowers. Their propagation efforts continued, with consistently “splashy” markings on the foliage:
According to John, my plant (and others in the U.S.) were supplied by Bob, who is also responsible for naming the new variety, “Gotta Pea, John’s Big Splash.”
Now you know what’s in a name!
Pretty clever…and memorable, yeah?! 🙂
Until next time….
🙂 🙂 🙂