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California Gardening: Vacation in L.A. - What were those plants?

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Forum: California GardeningReplies: 6, Views: 85
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Mystic, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 3, 2005
2:08 PM

Post #1380848

We just got back from vacation in San Pedro and I am now trying to find out some of the plants we saw.

Many were sheared into shrubs. One had very fragrant two inch white blossoms, succulent dark green leaves with a tinge of gold, and little 1 and 1/2 inch red apple like fruits. Another had fragrant pink 1/2 inch blossoms, and thick rounded leaves in a very curious bronzy color. Both were sheared hard into boxes and rounds.

We saw trees with red bottle brush flowers, and trees with pinkish purple flowers (leaves too small to tell what they looked like. Maybe crabapple?) A tree with no leaves, and flat red flowers with a pine cone center sticking straight up. At Disneyland we saw what I think was a huge magnolia tree with pink flowers that almost looked like alstroemeria. The bark was light greyish white. It was in the front just past the entry gate on main street. Leaves were roundish grey-green.

There was a vine with red powderpuffs on it.

The Eucalyptus trees are amazing. How beautiful. Oranges and lemon trees captivated my daughter (4). Olive trees (I think) I would kill to have in my yard. Agapanthus (sigh) and osteospermum. Cacti and agaves (oooh I love agave). Bougainvillea everywhere.
Rohnert Park, CA
(Zone 9a)

April 3, 2005
2:28 PM

Post #1380869

Go west, time to move.
Mystic, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 3, 2005
2:33 PM

Post #1380874

Great idea, but no can do freeway.
Mystic, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 3, 2005
3:08 PM

Post #1380926

Hey, I think the one with white flowers and apples is a natal plum, or Carissa! Anyone care to confirm?
L.A. (Canoga Park), CA
(Zone 10a)

April 4, 2005
8:06 PM

Post #1383813

Natal plum sounds right.

The trees with bottle brush flowers are called bottlebrush. The tree with red flowers was probably some kind of coral tree. The tree with pink flowers like alstroemeria was probably an orchid tree. (There are many species of bottlebrush, coral tree, and orchid tree.)
Mystic, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 4, 2005
10:52 PM

Post #1384077

Thank you Kelli! You guys have the coolest plants. I just bought a Natal plum on Ebay. Probably a dumb thing, but it said they can grow as a house plant in winter. I think it is a perfect plant. Fragrant flowers, fruit and succulent evergreen foliage. To top it off, the one I bought was variegated.

Kelli, do you have a home with a yard or do you garden in containers on a deck or balcony? I was so impressed by the landscaping of even small homes in L.A. Saw a lot of front yard and balcony gardens- really experimental. I love the way people have restricted their landscape to maybe one item- like cacti, or just roses. Or some have these incredible climbers up and over their entire doorway. You'd never see that in stodgy Connecticut!
Mystic, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 4, 2005
11:16 PM

Post #1384111

Kelli, you were right on target with orchid tree and bottlebrush! I'm not sure about coral tree. The pictures I see don't seem to be the same, but maybe it is the time of year. The blooms were flat singles and then the center was dark brown and hard like a pine cone. The tree itself was wider than tall, more of a spreading tree.

Thaks again!

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