Guides: Mediterranean Garden Styles
Ceanothus, commonly known as California Lilac, offer almost everything a gardener could wish for in a shrub: free-flowering, lovely foliage, ease of cultivation, drought and salt tolerance. Fast growing, these desirable shrubs draw attention with their stunning blue, white or pink flowers. When a California Lilac bursts into bloom, it is a breathtaking sight to behold.
Native to the southern United States, Mexico, the Caribbean and northern South America, Agaves are evergreen succulents with handsome rosettes of usually thick, rigid, fleshy leaves with marginal teeth and often a sharp terminal spine. They exist in a wide range of sizes, colors and offer an amazing array of leaf shapes.
Mostly native to the Canary Islands off the west coast of North Africa, Aeoniums are fascinating evergreen succulents with irresistible rosettes of fleshy, pinwheel leaves. Attractive when not blooming, they are particularly striking with their bright racemes of small, star-shaped flowers.
Native to Mexico and Central America, Echeverias are regarded by many as one of the most beautiful succulents. Evergreen, they form attractive rosettes of fleshy leaves and often resemble plum-petaled roses, waterlilies or ruffled lettuce. There are dozens of species, and hundreds of cultivars offering a wide array of colors, sizes or leaf shapes.
Native to sub-Saharan Africa, Madagascar, and Arabia, Aloes are evergreen succulents with usually spiny leaves arranged in neat rosettes, and spectacular, candle-like inflorescences bearing clusters of brilliant yellow, orange or red, tubular flowers. They exist in a wide range of sizes, colors and offer an amazing array of leaf shapes.
Native to the Mediterranean region, Lathyrus odoratus (Sweet Pea) is a bushy or climbing annual noted for the delicious scent of its lovely flowers. Blooming in a wide array of enchanting colors, Sweet peas deserve a spot in sunny borders, containers, on arches and treillises where they will happily twine and release their fabulous scent.
Primarily native to Australia, Grevillea are evergreen shrubs or trees of great beauty with needle-like to fern-like foliage and incredibly flamboyant flowers. Most Grevillea varieties are very fast growing, tough and low maintenance. Easy to grow, they tolerate drought, heat, and grow well in poor soils as long as they are well-drained.
Commonly called Mexican Shell Flower or Tiger Flower, Tigridia is a treasure of the mid - late summer garden. Its large flared flowers are vividly colored and come in two-tone combinations pairing white, pink, red, orchid, yellow or orange with contrasting center spots
Often associated with the famous purple fields of Provence, Lavandula angustifolia, also called English Lavender, is not native to England but to the Mediterranean. Ideal for garden borders, cooking and potpourri, this lavender also produces the best oils.
Here is a list of suitable flower bulbs, corms or rhizomes for your Mediterranean Garden that will pop up in profusion every spring or fall. Most of them originate from Mediterranean region and will thrive in more temperate gardens.