Favorite or New Plant
Among the ornaments in my garden is a metal sculpture that holds a potted plant. This is great in concept, but the shape and size of the holder prevents using a pot with a saucer. Hence, it's difficult to keep a plant adequately watered during summer. Over the last several years, I've tried a number of different annuals without success, but this year, I finally scored a winner: ornamental purslane. Derived from the edible purslane, Portulaca oleracea, the hybrid ornamental purslanes are vigorous, trailing plants with brightly colored flowers to 2 inches across. They thrive in hot, humid, dry conditions. Allan Armitage has written that the series called Yubi Summer Joy is the one by which others are judged, combining excellent colors, large flowers, and terrific garden performance.
Tool or Gardening Product
Dramm Rubber Hose
While fixing up an area in my garden this year, I decided to have some fun by coordinating some of the garden accessories with the flowers. In this case, the color red predominated for attracting hummingbirds. So it seemed appropriate to add a red hose, especially when I found an inexpensive one, but I quickly found out how frustrating a cheap hose can be to use, as it was constantly kinking. Then, I had the opportunity to receive a sample of the Dramm ColorStorm Premium Rubber Hose, in red, of course. And, oh, what a difference. This U.S.A-made hose doesn't kink, coils easily, is flexible to -25 degrees F, hot water-resistant to 160 degrees F, has crush-proof nickel-plated brass couplings, and is obviously durable. Besides red, other colors available include orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. Plus, there are coordinating watering wands, water timers, and sprinklers.