|These Ceanothus, Californian Lilac were|
less than a metre high a year before and
have taken off. Not a good position next
to a shed with timber walls.
In addition to aid the growth this year, we have had the season on our side with not so much rain over winter, but good late rains in September, which with the added warmth and daylight hours of the equinox period, meant that plants really took off. Modest little shrubs became two metre high shrubs and began to reach rooflines and come close to tree canopies. Somehow the process of raining is more effective than drippers, probably because whole areas of the garden are watered and not just the spots where the drippers reach.
The Ceanothus shrubs as shown above and right are growing next to a shed with wooden sides. The Ceanothus is a short-lived Californian native that grows fast, and dies within 15 - 20 years by which time it has many twiggy, dead branches and will burn easily. It is designed to burn as a way of renewing and allowing young seedlings space and nutrients to grow.
If grown near trees it can create a ladder effect whereby a grass fire or flying embers from a bushfire can set the Ceanothus on fire and in turn the flames can reach up into nearby trees where the fire can really take off.
These shrubs could be pruned low, although they don't respond to pruning very well, or taken out altogether. Watch this spot, these shrubs will be removed!