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Gardeners' Dirt: Sale offers cornucopia of flowers, plants

By Nancy Zaplac and Fran Kanak - Victoria County Master GardenersEdited by Charla Borchers Leon
Aug. 30, 2012 at 3:30 a.m.

There will be various plants donated from the greenhouses of Gulf Coast Floral to the fall plant sale.  Orchids, like this Cattleya variety, are being donated by John Ramos, who partnered with the late Mike Zeplin as friends of the Master Gardeners.

There will be various plants donated from the greenhouses of Gulf Coast Floral to the fall plant sale. Orchids, like this Cattleya variety, are being donated by John Ramos, who partnered with the late Mike Zeplin as friends of the Master Gardeners.

Now that the end of summer is in sight, it's time to get our flower beds and vegetable gardens ready for fall. With that in mind, make plans to come out to the Victoria County Master Gardener Association Fall Plant sale from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 8, until sold out. The sale will be at the Victoria Educational Gardens Pavilion located across from the tower at Victoria Regional Airport.

New features

Gardener's garage sale - Look for added features to the plant sale. A gardener's garage sale will include new and gently used garden art, flower pots, hats, birdhouses and more to in the vegetable garden gazebo. We will also offer container gardens and color bowls, which will add a colorful accent to your patio or front porch. Along with the readymade container gardens, we will have a variety of small plants suitable to plant in your own containers.

Donated plants - A good friend of the Master Gardener Mike Zeplin passed away recently. His partner, John Ramos, will be graciously donating some special plants from the greenhouses at Gulf Coast Floral, including orchids, pony tail palms, bromeliads and cacti. Some of you may remember their beautiful garden with all the orchids hanging from the trees on the Fall 2010 Victoria Garden Tour.

We will have a good selection of plants grown in our green house, along with those grown by individual Master Gardeners. Many of the plants that are growing in the green house can be found in VEG.

Unique, new to our greenhouse

Desert rose is a striking plant that can be grown in a pot on your patio. It requires full sun and sparse watering. This plant blooms at intervals from spring to fall and must be protected from freezing weather. Go to vcmga.org and check out this year's June 8, Gardeners' Dirt article for more information and photos.

Rangoon creeper is a spectacular vine, which has tubular, fragrant flowers with various colors from white to pink to red. Go see this very fragrant vine growing on the Meditation Garden arbors in VEG. Remember the saying, "Take time to smell the roses?" So, take time to go and smell the fragrance of this beautiful vine.

Lila de los Llanos is an attractive native ornamental plant, which has yellow blooms in spring, summer, and fall.

Pine cone ginger is a tropical and tender perennial grown in sun to partial shade. This is also known as the shampoo ginger.

Buddha belly is a tropical and tender perennial and is a unique specimen plant for a container.

Fall aster with its lavender flowers brightens the fall landscape. This plant is great for a xeriscape.

We will also be selling hardy and tropical water lilies direct from our water garden located on the east side of gardens. Just choose the color you want and someone will get the plant out of the water garden for you.

Plants from a local grower

Along with citrus trees, vegetables, and herbs from a local grower, we will also have numerous flowering plants, vines and succulents. The following list is just a sampling:

Shooting star clerodendron is a fairly easy semi-evergreen tropical shrub. The foliage has dark green top color with purple underneath with shooting starburst pink and white flowers.

Blue sky vine is a perennial tropical vine that blooms in the summer and fall and is deer resistant. The vine can be found on the Cathedral Arbor at the gardens.

Joseph's coats varieties, such as Little Ruby, Chartreuse, Party Time and Brazilian Red Hots will be available. This herbaceous perennial, grown for its colorful foliage, does well in shade or part shade. These vibrant plants work well in containers.

Cuban oregano is an herb grown for its foliage contrast and blooms in sun to partial shade with an insignificant white, lavender or mauve flower.

Additionally, we will have a few varieties of citrus trees including grapefruit, limes, Satsuma's, oranges and lemons.

Watch for next week's article in this column for more diverse plants and shrubs that are suitable for growth in our area.

The Gardeners' Dirt is written by members of the Victoria County Master Gardener Association, an educational outreach of Texas AgriLife Extension - Victoria County. Mail your questions in care of the Advocate, P.O. Box 1518, Victoria, TX a; or vcmga@vicad.com, or comment on this column at VictoriaAdvocate.com.



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