Bill Brattain and Carol Wamsley-Brattain of Eastwood Drive have been recognized as December 2021 Selection of the Month by The Garden Club at Palm Coast.
Bill and Carol are from North Carolina and moved to Palm Coast in 2008. Carol is a watercolor artist and used to teach art in Tennessee. She has many beautiful art pieces inside their home. Bill is now retired after working in construction for 51 years and enjoys gardening and being outside. He continuously propagates many plants in order to always have color throughout the landscape.
The front garden contains a large diversity of plants, including bird of paradise, dark pink crape myrtles, agapanthus, oyster plants (Moses in a cradle), split-leaf philodendron, large ferns, Hawaiian Ti, broadleaved palm lily (Cordyline petiolaris), crimson fire loropetalum hedges, a tall variety of red canna lilies, red canna lilies with yellow specks, firecracker bush, European fan and Phoenix roebellini (pygmy date) palms and a native Palatka holly tree.
Bill has propagated several banana trees which are in the backyard. Last year he harvested over 50 pounds of bananas in a single day!! Other fruits include: pink grapefruits, juicy Hamlin and Valencia oranges, Florida’s best juicing orange. He also has a vegetable garden with tomatoes and peppers.
He is experimenting with two hybrid dragon fruit cacti –‘Halley’s Comet’, which is self-pollinating, and produces a fruit which is pink outside with purple flesh inside, and ‘Physical Graffiti’ with dark pink flesh. ‘Physical Graffiti’ needs cross-pollination to set fruit, usually done by hand pollination from another variety. Both hybrids produce gorgeous white flowers which only open at night and are closed by morning. He is waiting patiently for them to produce fruit.
He also grows two other night blooming cacti, both with fragrant white flowers: Hooker’s orchid cactus (Epiphyllum hookeri) and Dutchman’s pipe or Queen of the night (Epiphyllum oxpetalum).
Bill gave us some bananas to try as well as some pups to grow in our yard. Hopefully, we will have our own bananas next season! Thank you, Bill.
Submitted by Nancy Iandoli
Selection of the Month Committee