Last night concluded our Holiday Light Show (HLS) for the season. I took these photos last night and the snow was a welcome addition to the show for the last two nights which were both well attended. The photo directly above was shared by Laura Boettcher this morning (from last night). We don't have an official tally on attendance yet but certainly beat the record last year and were pleased with the steady attendance for this annual fundraising event. As I type on this Monday morning, we have volunteers out in the gardens starting to take down lights. Alan, Ron R., Terry, Peg and Larry H. were all out collecting lights today. Depending on the weather, it will take 2-3 months to take down the HLS and properly sort, process and store all of our lights and supplies. Our volunteers were again instrumental in helping with this event including set-up, facilitation and ultimately the take down of the HLS as well. Ron P. was in to repair lights and our carpenters (Dave, Jim, Vern and Ron Y.) had plenty of work as well. Dick H. and Bill O. repaired one of our trucks and Bill collected garbage from the HLS route. Dr. Gredler was in for some painting and Maury ran multiple errands for us. We also saw Gary, Urban, Chuck S. and many others today.
My time is quickly being redirected to preparations for this year. With only a couple months of preparation time, I'll be neck deep in catalogs this week as I start to get our orders together. I'm also sorting some of my summer images which contain new plants that I'll be hunting for yet this winter. I've included some neat treasure flowers (Gazania sp.) which are a gorgeous, heat-tolerant annual for us. Native to South African alpine meadows, this plant is tolerant of dry soils and will typically get 8"-12" in height. The silvery-green foliage is also interesting although rabbits find this entire plant delicious so consider yourself warned! Although there are many species, the most common selection for our gardens is Gazania rigens. The flowers are quite vivid and long-lasting for treasure flowers. Directly above and below is the new variety 'Kiss Frosty Orange Flame'. Enjoy the wide variety of available selections seen below...
Gazania rigens 'Kiss Frosty Orange Flame'
Gazania rigens 'SunBathers Nahui' (double)
Gazania rigens 'SunBathers Tikai'
Gazania rigens 'New Day Red Shades'
Gazania rigens 'Gazebra Red' (above and below)
Gazania rigens 'SunBathers Najui' (double)
Gazania rigens 'SunBathers Sunset Jane Lemon Spot' (double)
Gazania rigens 'Big Kiss White Flame'