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Texas Gardening: Choisya Ternyata - Mexican Orange Blossom

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Forum: Texas GardeningReplies: 12, Views: 176
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okus

(Zone 8b)

November 19, 2004
9:50 PM

Post #1155029

Has anyone tied growing one in Texas? It is supposed to be a Native of Mexico, so it should grow here.

It is a rounded, medium-sized shrub with shining, dark green leaves. USDA Zones 8 - 10. Mexican orange is hardy to 10 F, and probably can be grown in zone 7. I had one in a very sheltered spot in my UK garden, in a South West facing corner where it reallt thrived, grew at least 8ft high and across. It is evergreen and blooms in spring and again in fall and smells wonderful!
salvia_lover
Modi'in
Israel

November 20, 2004
3:49 PM

Post #1156283

Totally off-topic from your question, but look at that lovely blue skipper you caught in the pic too! :-)

-Julie
okus

(Zone 8b)

November 20, 2004
7:13 PM

Post #1156511

I didn't even notice him - well spotted! Thats an old photo I dug out just to show folk what I meant.
I would love to grow one here if I can but I have 2 problems. Will they grow and where do I find one!!
salvia_lover
Modi'in
Israel

November 22, 2004
6:09 AM

Post #1159296

I bet it will do just fine in Texas. Wait...where in Texas (geographically) are you? I'm not familiar with Keller. Does it snow there? That may be a factor. Also ice storms. But if you have neither of those...or seldom...it probably should do fine. Oh hold on, you had it in England and it snows there, so I guess that wouldn't be a problem. Not all garden centers know their plants by scientific names, but some good GCs do. Why don't you take a pic of it and the scientific name and see if they can order you one. All it can cost you is the gasoline to get there (plus all the other stuff you end up buying "just because" while you're in the GC ;-).

-Julie
okus

(Zone 8b)

November 22, 2004
8:21 PM

Post #1160318

Hi Salvia,
I live about 15 miles North of downtown Fort Worth, on the western side of Keller proper. I would expect Choiysia to do well here - It isn't too keen on ice and snow but its the biting winds which cause problems in the UK - it grows fine in a sheltered spot if its in Full Sun. I've been very surprised not to see it anywhere locally though and I've only found one place that sells it and they are in Oregon - rather a long way to go! They do mail order but I'm always iffy about that, I've been sent some pretty shoddy stuff in the past from various places. I'll give it a whirl if I can't find an alternative source though.
salvia_lover
Modi'in
Israel

November 23, 2004
3:45 PM

Post #1161578

Okus, one thing I thought about as a possibility to shelter it from ice and snow came from something I did yesterday to protect my succulents from all the winter-long rain. I bought a big sheet of fiberglass (very pliable...just like plastic sheeting that people use to winterize the outside of windows...just made of fiberglass rather than plastic). The fiberglass sheets are as clear as a glass window, but very flexible and you could create a tent over the plant with it...sort of a lean-to thing against the wall or fence that is sheltering it. You could hold the other end down on the ground with heavy (1ft or larger) rocks. Or you could try staking it, but the holes you'd have to create might end up tearing further in the wind. In any case, my sheeting survived last night's very strong winds and might plants got a lot less water than they've been having to suffer through. :-)

If you couldn't find anything to attach the fiberglass sheeting to, you could wrap it around a frame made from PVC pipes or similar. this would be like a mini greenhouse. With a frame like that, you could space out the sheeting anyway you want...to completely block out rain and wind or leaving spaces between each sheet to allow as much wind or rain in as you want.

...the more I type the more I want to do something like that for my succulents! LOL I better stop before I end up planning a shopping trip to buy out the entire DIY store! LOL

-Julie
okus

(Zone 8b)

November 23, 2004
4:10 PM

Post #1161632

What you describe would certainly work, but the HOA would have about 40 fits!! They are ferocious to put it mildly round here.
Although the plant required shelter in the UK it didn't need more than a SW facing corner and it never seemed to be affected by the ice and snow once it got going. I think, like most things they are vulnerable until they get their rootsystems going properly.
i also think that many things are not as fragile as people used to think. A good example of this is white ginger, which was thought to need to be hot house grown but is quite successful in the open garden and handles a UK climate without dying off completely.
salvia_lover
Modi'in
Israel

November 23, 2004
4:53 PM

Post #1161710

I cannot believe what goes on in those HOAs! I'd have an absolute TANTRUM if someone tried to tell me what I could plant or build in my own garden! An old friend of mine lives in a place like that near Chicago...the entire neighborhood has banned metal swingsets because they say they are an eyesore. Instead families with small children have to shell out 10 times as much money (or more!!!!!) for a fancy wooden jungle gym...or nothing at all. How infuriating!

-Julie
okus

(Zone 8b)

November 23, 2004
5:10 PM

Post #1161762

We have to get permission to put up an arbor in the back yard!! If you use bricks for edging they have to be concreted together - etc etc! I didn't realise what we were letting ourselves in for, and we pay for the priviledge. I think the HOA would like everyone to have just neatly mown grass all over.
htop
San Antonio, TX
(Zone 8b)


November 28, 2004
2:33 PM

Post #1168479

HOA are the pits! Before you can paint and/or reroof your house here, the color has to be approved by the HOA even if the colors are the same as before. The paint has to be the kind that fades and looks chalky after a year or so. Even if they can not be seen from the street, all storage sheds have to have the plans and the colors approved and when the shed is completed, they send an "inspector" out to approve it. If the HOA doesn;t approve it, it must be rebuilt. If one does not comply, one is sued by the HOA.

The most terrible thing the HOA has done is taken a home from a disbled veteran. He suffered head wounds in Viet Nam and consequently had a mental disablilty. He spent almost of his money buying a nice home in which he thought he would live in the rest of his life. The front yard slanted from the house to the street, so he built a nice low rock wall by the sidewalk, filled in the slant with dirt, made a few flowerbeds, planted grass, rose bushes and some hedges. However, he did not know that he needed the HOA's approval to do so. Then, he painted his house white with a nice shade of green for the trimmings without the HOA's approval. The HOA told him to repaint the house with their approved colors, but he did ot have the money to do so. Burglars broke through his garage door and damaged it. He did not have the money to repair it within the time the HOA thought he should have completed the repairs. At least the man was trying to improve his habitat and had greatly improved the landscaping. . The HOA sent him numerous threats, put a lien on his home, sued and finally took full ownership of his home after he did not seek legal help due to not having any money. Plus, with his mental condition, he was not quite aware of what was actually happening to him. All of this came to light after someone reported it to the local newspaper. The whole city of San Antonio was up in arms over it; but, it was too late to do anything about it. Everyone agreed there was nothing wrong with what he had done and his house and yard looked nice. It was on the news for 3 days and we all saw him evicted. I consider this act theft. If people had known about his plight, we'd have chipped in money, bought paint for his house, helped him repaint it, fix his garage door, etc. However, all of the legal manuevers by the HOA was completed very quietly. The "homeowners" did not know what their HOA was going to do to a man who had honorably served his country. He was robbed of his home and left with no money to purchase another one. Of course the HOA stated that they had tried to work with him, but he was "unreasonable". I often wonder what happened to him. Several times we had tried to locate his whereabouts in order to try to help to no avail.

Sorry, I have ranted a little here. I never thought this could happen in America, especially when homesteads are protected in Texas.

This message was edited Jul 25, 2006 3:55 AM
salvia_lover
Modi'in
Israel

November 29, 2004
3:21 PM

Post #1169961

I'm really surprised no civil rights group jumped on this with all their might and power. They should have sued the HOA right back. The man's mental impairment should have put the balance in his favor legally and morally. The fact that he was a veteran should have clinched the deal. I'm really shocked.

-Julie
okus

(Zone 8b)

November 29, 2004
3:27 PM

Post #1169968

I must say I'm shocked and horrified too - what about the mans rights - I thought this was "the Home of the Brave and the Land of the Free". Not very brave to persecute a war veteran who has proved his courage for real without appealling to everyone around to help the guy out. and not much freedom either.
htop
San Antonio, TX
(Zone 8b)


November 29, 2004
9:22 PM

Post #1170553

He was sadly and wrongly taken advantage of because he was easy prey due to his mental condition. I have been hoping that an attorney took up his plight for free after all of the news coverage and hope he did not join the ranks of the homeless. My brother works for the newspaper. I'll have him ask if they can do a followup story about him if he can be located. If he is sadly destitute, we can still help him.

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