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Regional Picks: Spring Color—South

Fine Gardening - Issue 192

1. California tree poppy

California Tree Poppy

Romneya coulteri

Zones: 7–11

Size: 6 feet tall and 6 to 8 feet wide, but can spread much wider over time

Conditions: Full sun to partial shade; average to dry, well-drained soil

Native range: Southern California

Even surrounded by other showy spring bloomers, California tree poppy’s 9-inch flowers with crinkled white petals stand out. Flowering for us in April and May, this shrublike perennial with gray-green, rubbery-textured leaves fits well near the back of a mixed border. In years with mild winters, plants in our garden remain mostly evergreen. They require some hard pruning before spring to keep them neat. Growing in full sun with space to spread in sandy loam soil, our plants must not have gotten the memo on not liking summer water, because both irrigation and rainfall haven’t proven detrimental.

 

2. Soap aloe

Soap Aloe

Aloe maculata

Zones: 8–12

Size: 1 to 2 feet tall and 2 feet wide

Conditions: Full or…

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