Thursday, July 17, 2008


Nemesia are a flowering annual I've never grown before, but had picked up in garden centers to put in pots and hanging baskets. They're beautiful, and the way they sort of vine and branch out with just enough strength to hold them up a little really adds character to whatever mixture of plants I have in the basket.

When I decided to try growing them from seed this year, I honestly didn't hold out much hope. I ALSO didn't do a good job of restraining myself, and got a variety of seeds/colors... Turns out they do VERY well from seed, as you can see from some of these pictures. (My most favorite is probably the one above)

The flowers really aren't very big - I'm holding the camera pretty close for all these pictures. There's something similar to snapdragons about the flowers - the overall shape I guess? I've actually caught myself touching the flowers, getting ready to squeeze like you would a snapdragon to make it "snap" it's mouth open. Doesn't work on these guys.

It's really hard to say if I prefer the buttery flowers (two pictures above) that resemble buttered popcorn, or some of the more vibrant ones that look like glowing magma. With such a wide variety out there, I have to admit I'll be looking for more options next year. (Yes, I have a weakness...)

In the front hanging baskets there seems to be a change in heirarchy. First the nemesia and lobelia were in charge, but now the wave petunias are picking up steam. I've also noticed some of the nemesia are dying off, but they've had it rough with the 90F days we've had lately. Forget to water the baskets even one day, and a particular plant could be fried beyond recovery. I even have plenty of moss and water retaining gel crystals in the potting mix... I'm tempted to run mini irrigation tubing along the edge of the porch, up the wall, tucked into the ceiling work, and then run it down to the baskets - all controlled with timers over at the spigot.

Seeing how I'm having a hard enough time getting the easier-to-reach irrigation just right for the backyard deck planters, I don't think I'll take on quite as much of a challenge with the baskets hanging from the ceiling out front for another year or two.

So - have you picked your favorite color yet? And have you decided that, yes, you too will be growing nemesia next year? Perhaps even from seed? (SOOO much cheaper in the long run than paying something like $4.95 for a single potted plant!)


Dave E. said...

Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?

;-) Just teasin' – they really are very pretty. I think I most liked the same ones you did.

Peter said...

They also remind me of nasturtiums. I rather like the rich colour of the first photo.

Jeph said...

Dave - those buttery ones make me want to nibble on them.

Peter - yes, I can see that similarity as well, only the nemesia MUCH smaller.