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Rationalization is a Wonderful Thing

Now that the front planting beds are sailing along, requiring nothing more than supplemental water (at least until the once-a-day rains start in June), the occasional bit of fertilizer, and popping out of the few weeds who manage to make it around the newspaper/mulch barrier. The veg garden out back is likewise traveling in greased grooves. Squidgy mushrooms and tenacious bahia grass have to be pulled out of the boxes almost daily, but other than water/pest control, little is required. Clearly it is time to turn my attention to the sides of the house! We're sub-tropical, with the house facing south, so we get an almost equal amount of sun/shade on both sides...which as you know, makes our potential planting choices as wide as the ocean. *rubs hands gleefully* Planted along the sides of the house right now are fountain grass, hawaiian ti, and this thing whose identity absolutely escapes me:

I have googled and googled but simply can't find this exact plant. Other than its messy spreading habit...underground runners that suddenly spring up new plants in awkward areas...we love it. The red petioles make such a lovely contrast with the variegated leaves. But what the heck is it? Anyway, the fountain grass needs taming (those of you who live/garden in Florida may laugh at me now for planting it in the first place...but it's pritty!), and why the heck not cottage garden in these spaces, as well, especially when there's sooo many amazing plants out there... Not locally, of course. Finding a good nursery in this area is like finding actual fish in the lakes...apparently the ospreys get them all...

...but that's another post. So I took my search online, and found three sites who I know, deep in my bones, are going to bleed me dry: WorldPlants.com - Holy MERDE does this site have it in for me. Holding my first order to under $100 was a Herculean task. I managed to get away with only three plants. This time...
  1. Heliconia rostrata Lobster Claw
  2. Fuschia "Hawkshead"
  3. Ferraria crispa Spider Iris
I know, the Lobster Claw gets SEVEN FEET TALL, I plan on putting it outside the Girlchild's window, though. Yeah, she's only 8, I know, but she's mighty cute already. Trying yet another Fuschia down here is probably a recipe for heartache, but I plan on babying this one, no direct sun at all. The Spider Iris was just irresistible with those ruffles and spots. I can quit anytime, shutup. PlantDelights.com - Another with their eyes set firmly on my bank account. I haven't yet ordered from them, but here is my wishlist:
  1. Curcuma zedoaria 'Bicolor Wonder'
  2. Delosperma cooperi
  3. Echinacea purpurea 'Virgin' PP 18,684
  4. Echinacea 'Adam Saul' PPAF
  5. Farfugium japonicum 'Jitsuko's Star'
  6. Habranthus x floryi Purple Base
  7. Habranthus 'Pink Flamingos'
  8. Physostegia virginiana 'Miss Manners' PP 12,637
  9. Punica granatum 'State Fair'
  10. Schizachyrium scoparium 'The Blues'
  11. Zephyranthes 'Moulin Rouge'
  12. Arisaema ringens
  13. Arisaema amurense
For those of you with actual shade/un-crazy heat, these folks also have a HUGE selection of hostas. DiggingDog.com - The third and final (only because I haven't searched for more, I suspect) money siphon currently plaguing me. They have a spectacular selection of perennials...must...exercise...control! I'm only through the C section of the catalog and already have over $50 worth of plants in the cart. Halp! Nevermind, they don't deliver to Florida. Hmph. You know, we would have a lot more disposable income were it not for the dang Internet... UPDATE: Thanks to LetsPlant, a fellow Blotanist, we have an ID on the plant above...it is Breynia nivosa, also known as Snow on the Mountain. Thanks much for the ID! Going now to write that down in my dang journal...