Late Summer Flowers

Late summer blooms peek out from some of the most unexpected places. I love how these flowers seem to magically appear this time of year all over Santa Barbara in gardens, at the farmer’s market, and wild along the roadside. Here are a few of my favorites:

Hedychium Ginger

This unique plant is incredibly fragrant and needs shade to grow well in our climate.

Each of these yellow spikes will bloom into beautiful flowers.

They make a bold statement in an arrangement.  This one happens to be on my kitchen table. I mixed the ginger with begonia leaves, green celosia, and pink sedum.


Also called Pink Ladies (or Naked Ladies if you’re feeling scandalous), these bulbs love to grow everywhere in town. I snapped this photo on the side of the road.

You can also find bunches for sale at the local farmer’s market.

Mantilia poppies

To me, the petals of this wild flower are reminiscent of the folds in a couturier’s silk bridal gown.

But don’t let their delicate appearance fool you.  They are as hearty and prolific as they are stunning, and have been known to take over a garden.  So plant in limited quantities.

Daisy: What kind of a garden do you come from?
Alice: Oh, I don’t come from any garden.
Daisy: Do you suppose she’s a wildflower?