March 21, 2010

Succession Planting: Can I Keep It Green?

Notice the green, green grass around the beds. Centipede grass goes dormant after the first frost. Ryegrass was overseeded. Mowing will keep it from going to seed and hot sun will kill it as the summer grass comes out. Ryegrass will pull phosphorus and potassium from the subsoil and suppress nematodes, always a problem in our sandy soil.

Lantana montevidensis sprouts

The tan mulch is a mixture of pine needles and dry lantana foliage.

Purple Heart in this same spot, last August with
reseeded Melampodium. and purple Datura.
Purple Heart roots easily. I have some in little pots to tuck in other spots.

Lantana, last July. You can orient the bed by the crape myrtle trunks.
Behind lantana is Madagascar periwinkle, which followed poppies and larkspur.
Behind periwinkles is Salvia leucantha for a September/October show.
Periwinkles reseed easily; I was told just to stir the soil a little in spring.
Salvia leucantha is perennial here, but requires very good drainage.

In a mild winter, the lantana would not have died back.
I'm deciding whether to plant more summer bulbs with
winter foliage, like Lycoris and Oxblood lilies.

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