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Fred's Garden Blog

After a nearly five year hiatus, Fred's Garden Blog is back! Now you can enjoy and experience the gardening exploits and adventures of Fred in his quest to hybridize brugmansia and keep his jungle and nursery under control.

/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 8918 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

Mother Nature's beauty....

Mother Nature put on quite a show last night with a full moon rising amongst our afternoon thunderstorms and a setting sun.I scrambled to find a blooming Angel Trumpet plant to use in the foreground, but I had to settle for this rather lanky Brugmansia without any blooms.
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 8042 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

When Oceans Collide

If you are a weather fanatic like I am, Central Florida is a great place to live.  During the summer the sky comes alive almost every afternoon when the Gulf and Atlantic Ocean sea breezes collide. Saturday's skyline was quite dramatic.While I was hoping we would get some rain out of these storms, the storm ended-up being all show and no action.  The exploding clouds were a good backdrop to showcase Brugmansia Sweet Summertime, a Monika Gottschalk introduction that thrives in our Florida heat.
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 7596 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

Is it Spring yet?

Winter rolled in early this year in Florida.  Typically we may have a slight chance of frost in December, but if we are going to encounter sub-freezing weather, it usually comes in January or early February.  This week we are in the midst of a hard freeze.  Last night the temps here dropped down to 25f.  As I am typing this at 2:00am Wednesday morning it is already 26f in my brugmansia growing area.  I'm sure it will drop 3-4 degrees more before sunrise.  To protect my plants from this sub ...
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 7346 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

When clouds explode!

One thing I love about Florida is that we have some really cool storms. During the summer and and early fall, Central Florida becomes a breeding ground for massive thunderstorms.  The storms are fueled by the collision between the east and west coast sea breezes.   A few days ago this massive storm developed in less than an hour.  As it grew larger and larger the sun started to set and the entire sky turned an eerie orange color.  Here's one of my monster seedlings silhouetted be the growing ...
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 9156 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

An Angel Trumpet Sunset...

Florida has some of the most beautiful sunsets you'll ever encounter.  Here's some recent shots I took while strolling through my Brugmansia forest at sundown.It is almost as if the sky is on fire..Of course if I was living in southern California I would be afraid that the sky may actually be on fire...Sunrise and sundown are the best time of day to admire Angel Trumpets during our hot Florida summers.
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 10346 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

Pick up sticks...

Seeing how I'm sort of playing catch-up here I thought I would share a few photos from the post-freeze clean-up.  To recap, the winter of 2009 was said to be the worst ever here in Central Florida.  I had planned to build a large shade house last fall to protect my brugs, but was not able to do so.  I relied on frost cloth, plastic sheeting, and an endless supply of water to protect my brugs.  The damage was great and I estimate that I lost about 30% of my plants.Here's a photo from early ...
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 6683 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

It's official, this winter really has been cold as ice...

Central Florida's chilly winter this year is going into the record books as the coldest in nearly 30 years.  The National Weather Service stated this week that this has been the coldest winter season on record since 1981.  Winter does not appear to want to give up its hold on us so we could be on the way to setting the record as the coldest winter season on record. The only upside to all this is that our much-needed rainfall has been above average this winter.  I say let's close the ...
/ Author: Sommer Gardens / Number of views: 17934 / Comments: / Article rating: No rating

Thanks anyway Canada, but please keep your weather to yourself!

Just kidding of course, I like Canadians.....however, their weather etiquette leaves something to be desired!Story by senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson. So far this month, much of the Deep South and Middle Atlantic states have been hit with snowstorms and persistent cold.Average temperatures since Feb. 1 have been a whopping 5 to 10 degrees below normal! So what's going on?An unusually strong and persistent area of high pressure over northern Canada has been forcing ...

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