SHARING SECRETS: Spring Has Sprung

Edited by Cathy Tylka.

Question: Spring has Sprung! How is your place doing? My plants are flowering like crazy, and some never bloomed before? Share whatever plant, flower, scrub, or tree that is your favorite for this time of year!
Wikimedia Commons.
Spring Has Sprung! Rancho Guajome Adobe County Park, Vista, CA. Spring, 2005

Linda Chisari … mentions that this has been the best year for sweet peas EVER! Mine are 8 1/2’ tall and have been blooming since February 1! In late October, I decided that, in case we were still isolated from each other in Spring 2021, I wanted to be sure to have plenty of flowers to share with friends and neighbors, bringing joy to all. And so, I planted 2- 8’ rows of seeds including ‘Cupani’, ‘Painted Lady’, and an ‘Early’ mix. Here they are in bloom on April 12….ten weeks and going strong!




Christine Miller, 92010, asks a question… Our faithful freesias have been spectacular, but unfortunately so many of the ranunculus bulbs I purchased from Armstrong's did not bloom...only a handful, plus my bulbs that I replanted from last year. This was a great disappointment!


The petunias and the lobelia I planted throughout the garden are doing fantastic, but I must protect them from our two resident rabbits that feast on the grass in our yard and love to eat the lobelia and petunias. They will completely shear off a lobelia plant in one night! We put wire mesh around them. Any suggestions?


Chris Drayer, 92104, mentions… My Tabebuia impetiginosa, Pink Trumpet tree, street trees, never approved by the city horticulturalist, have been spectacular this year. They actually seem to bloom better in low rainfall years. Fun fact: One of these trees was salvaged from rejected plant material on the Leucadia Blvd street landscape project I was involved in years ago. Briggs Trees says they have them in 15 gal. and 24” box. They are good garden trees, but lots of flower petals to sweep up.

Gail Theilacker, 92122, writes…My White Brugmansia is blooming like crazy, an unbelievable full flush, perfuming the whole courtyard. It was planted three years ago - never fertilized, but I plan to add a bit this year after such a brilliant showing. My garden was designed by Nan Sterman.

Susan Starr says… That’s a hard choice this time of year. But I always look forward to seeing my Australian Mint Bush, Prostanthera, in bloom.

Lucy Warren, 92104, declares… Carpentaria californica--so elegant!

Lili Walsh, 92027, says…My Raspberry Dracaena bloomed for the first time since I planted it ten years ago. It’s just beautiful!

Tynan Wyatt, 92010, tells me… My daffodils are the most reliable bulbs I have and their smell always reminds me of spring. Other blooms that light up my garden are the California natives (woolly blue curls, verbena de la mina, ceanothus, and more) and some other Mediterranean flowering plants (gazania, pincushion flowers, grevilleas, aloes). Bright spots for fruits are the loquats and strawberries just starting to ripen up.

Kiki Skagen Munshi, 92036, writes…The pear by the corral is my favorite tree today—totally white with bloom.

Barbara Beaumont of 92104 adds…Since I volunteer at the municipal Rose Garden, I just have to say roses! Week of April 18 they will be in full bloom!

Sheila Harrington Smith, 92010, declares… My favorite tree right now is our Redbud, which is in blossom.

Frank Hines shares… My fruit trees are setting fruit like crazy. Apricot, nectarine, peach, plucot and now the guava is preparing to cover itself with blossoms.

Cathy Tylka, 92026, writes…My Portulacaria never boomed before, I am so excited, and for my Watsonias. But, right now my Rosemary is going off and the bees are loving it!

Cathy Tylka, RN, is a retired Emergency Nurse, who found her love of plants and the SDHS merge many years ago. Cathy acted as Treasurer for the organization and has volunteered for many activities. Now, she is more than happy to assist in gathering questions to ask you in the Sharing Secrets area of the Newsletter.