Floral Friday

It’s hotter than bloody blue blazes in the Mile High (triple digits yesterday). And the perfect time to feature a  plant that accurately describes those temps. Known as Kniphofia or sometimes called tritoma, they are commonly referred to as Poker Plant or Torch Lilies. These guys are part of the Liliaceae family and thrive in USDA zones 5-9. Classified as an upright evergreen perennial, native to Africa with a clumping habit, there are more than 70 known species. Producing copious amounts of nectar when blooming, poker plants are attractive to bees and hummingbirds. The swallowtail butterflies have been recently seen swooning around them.

These babies need room to spread (note to self, be sure to divide these guys this autumn-notice the one coming up in the Canadian shrub who has also become insane fairly large-yikes). Preferring full sun they are not fussy about our crummy soil. They do require good drainage and don’t like ‘wet feet’ so no planting in bogs, ‘kay?

Poker plants are hardy and moderately drought resistant although some regular water is required in order for them to reach their full potential. Make sure they received adequate water during hot, dry spells and providing a 2-3 inch layer of mulch will help. Deadheading will encourage more blooms. These guys can be divided in the autumn and their crowns should not be planted deeper than 3 inches. Water throughly upon division and liberally mulch and you should have a new plant next season. Just make sure you provide enough space (something I clearly misjudged when they were planted in a few years ago).

Now it’s time for me to enjoy an extra-large glass of well-iced lemonade and work from inside the house in air-conditioned bliss. I realize many of you have had very hot temps already with the high humidity so I’ll stop whining now. Ummm, after second thought, nope, no I won’t. I’ll just finish by saying, it’s too damn hot!

Have a great weekend and try to stay cool. 

Live, love, bark! 🐾

56 thoughts on “Floral Friday

  1. I’ve seen those poker plants before and they’re rather striking, although they’re not common over here. Our garden resembles a desert or perhaps it’s more like a wasteland. We virtually live on beach sand and the dogs have torn up the backyard. Sometimes, I wonder whether we should give up on the lawn a pave the lot. Meanwhile, my husband has sown some grass seed and spread chicken wire over his patch of green. I think he’s become delusional.
    Best wishes,

    1. I removed the grass years ago and replaced it all with perennials and ground covers amongst stone paths. Far less to manage and everyone comments on the {albeit somewhat wild} cottage garden look. Dogs and grass rarely go together. 😇

  2. Those are gorgeous! They look like they are on fire. It is hot here and this weekend we are getting a Saharan dust storm. WTH?!?

  3. Oh, those poker plants are very nice.

    It has been incredibly hot here too. Mom won’t let us stay outside for very long at all. We want some cooler air.

    Woos – Lightning, Misty, and Timber

  4. Oh my – it really has been bloody hot down there. I do love your Poker Plants. I’ve never seen them before. They’re beautiful.

  5. Looking around I find that if Benji were any closer to the heater he’d be on top of it. Yes, it is cold – about 2c and probably a day temperature of 14c, which is still cold. Still a long way to go before we get some heat back in the place. Someone asked “What do you like about winter?” The answer = “When it’s over !” Enjoy your day and I love the flowers.

  6. Those are interesting flowers. The first ones I saw around here, I thought were artificial. You’re flowers are beautiful!!! Hope it cools down a little bit. It’s supposed to be cold in the mountains, not 100+.

  7. well, if you’re dividing them anyway, I’d love one clump! It’s all just bushes here, and needs some hot poker color! LeeAnna PS we got the sun!

    1. Sorry you weren’t lucky at this game of ‘poker.’ Mom pretty much ignores hers and somehow they survive. Thank you for swinging by our Ranch, we 💖 visitors, especially those of the Airedale variety!
      Your fur-iends,
      Sam & Elsa 🐾

  8. It is fixing on getting too damn hot on the East Coast over the next week. Which makes it a good time for some of that ice cold lemonade and some AC comfort . . .
    Torch lilies . . . I love that!

    1. Seems like it’s hot all over (a record breaking 105 yesterday here). The ‘torch’ lilies seemed like the perfect floral Friday entry. Enjoy this weekend. Heard the 4th of July weekend is gonna be another scorcher.

  9. Yay, I finally found someplace else that has these. Thanks for putting a name to the flower. We have torch lilies that have been blooming around our Marsh, but I haven’t been able to identify them until now!! Yours are beautiful!
    Hope it cools off soon!

  10. They look good. And maybe they would make a nice addition to our garden. I don’t know, though, if our deer would leave them alone. What I’m really looking for is something drought tolerant [if possuble no watering needed at all] and at the same time not only deer resistant but rather deer repellant.

          1. Well, we’re learning by trial and error. 😉 What they definitely don’t like is Rosemary. And we have a mint plant they have never touched. As to shrubs: of course, there’s cacti [if you can call that a shrub] and Agaritas. The latter would be very good as they’re also really drought resistant. Currently I’m growing 2 in my nursery. We’ll simply put up with our “4-legged wrecking-crew”. 😉

  11. These Poker Plants would look great in my cactus garden behind the house. (OK, so it was there when we moved in and it has continued to thrive because I ignore it.)

Feel free to bark your thoughts...but no growling please.

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