Wednesday, September 15, 2010

September Bloom Day

I was up early this morning, couldn't wait to get out there and take photos...I wrote a whole story that was lost between uploading images and getting the kids off to school...oh well. I missed last month's GBBD because we were in the Davis Mts. and Big Bend participating in the Texas Hummingbird Roundup which was wonderful. I'm so happy to be back home because Autumn is my favorite time of year, when the relief from the heat makes everything magical again and the summer growth is deep and green and mature and the long wait for Fall color is on the verge of happening...any minute now...oh wait, we're in Texas. Scratch that.

My view of the culinary garden, where I take my morning coffee, and contemplate the day.

It's almost a year now that I've been watching the garden change, trying not to meddle too much. I put in 18 months of work to bring my garden to a point of readiness for a tour and the last 11 months I've been considering the next move, literally...we'll be moving in 3 years and I need to have this space, renter ready...easy to maintain, because I don't expect anyone to spend the time I've been spending in my garden. Loving spouse, and the daughters will all be finished with school and we will, as a our own directions, disperse, to return to this home at a much later date in time. So...I've watched things die, a lot of things. I haven't tried to help. My St. Augustine lawn, now in full sun refuses to give up...the bane of the neighborhood I'm sure (note to self: I should probably take down the "Conscious Gardening" signs as I do this...) and the Sycamore tree that was destined to become a goddess sculpture, decided to don a green dress and is unrecognizable. I intend to transform the front yard into a wildflower prarie with fruit trees. We'll see if that happens.

Heralding my favorite season...Fall Obedient Plant.

Anyway, I'm pretty happy with this months's not too shabby for what's going on around here. I just love the monthly tally and for those of you who haven't checked out Carol's blog:
May Dreams Come

you must do so as she is the keeper of the list...the list of all of us gardeners who love participating in, and seeing what is blooming all over the world each month. This is her idea, and a fantastic one at that.


Mexican Sage, cuphea and Rosemary.

New Gold Lantana, pony's foot, white lantana and Mexican oregano.

Fall Obedient plant, Thyrallis, Texas Sage.


Magestic Sage

Red Yucca, skullcap, Autumn Sage and Provincial Lavender.

Forgive the fuzziness of this shot...the bumble bee was so fast! I missed the hummingbird that was working this same barometer bush, Texas Sage. Below is fall obedient plant and in the background blooming...almond verbena, which smells delicious.

Autumn Sage

More blooming sage...

This is a cheat...I snapped it yesterday afternoon because the Passion Flower Vine doesn't open it's blooms until the sun hits it...

This is the same vine this has 9 flowers on it, which you can't see yet. Also blooming in this shot are, purple cone flower, butterfly weed, and bulbine. The reason I put this in is to show how the passion vine has taken over a rose bush...and is halfway up my house. When Randy gave me a few of these last summer, I didn't believe him when he said they were invasive...I have them all over my side garden and backyard now, I can't bring myself to take them out though, they're so happy and the butterflies love them.

My Bob cat, garden cat.

I got a new digital camera for my birthday and haven't really taken the time to play with it properly, but this is it's "pinhole" feature on some bronze fennel.

Red Okra

Red Okra flower, I think they are stunning!

Check out the aphids on this Butterfly Weed!

Beans, I can't remember what kind...I just put them everywhere...I hope these will grow up the tree house, they get a fair amount of sun...we'll see. Dorothy has spotted a squirrel.


Oxalis and a simple philodendron, which came back from the roots.
A chewed up Turks Cap.
Pink Island, Mexican Petunia, or ruellia

Blooming onions and a tiny row of arugula. You can also see culinary sage, new onions, Melissa, Gregg's Mistflower and Rosemary in this shot...none of which are in bloom presently.

Tobasco Pepper

This is the spider web arbor that I drew up for Bob Poole of Draco Gardens to make for me...he took my chicken scratch of a sketch home and this showed up on my porch a few weeks later. There is nothing this man can't do with metal! I love it and can't wait for Cecile to bloom!

Volunteer Moon Flower or Datura. I lost my double purple frill this winter, but the white one returns yearly.

Other things blooming but not photographed:

Mexican Honeysuckle


Russian Sage


Fern leaf Verbena

Purple Lantana

Flame Acanthus

Rock Rose

Blue Mealy Sage

Chili Pequin


Crape Myrtle
I'll add what I've forgotten in the coming days to this list. There's just a lot going on, though my guiding thought is: simplify...things need to change. In June I found a home for the bunnies, and last week, Cat of Amlo Farms welcomed my chickens into her fold. We now have 4 cats (one feral porch cat, that will stay with the house) 2 dogs and a long line of beta's "Flash the Birthday Fish" will be our last one. The number of plants who can handle the Texas Sun and unpredictable winters will continue to diminish. There is an end in sight.
What's blooming in your garden?
Happy Gardening!


Dana said...

Beautiful! Thanks for sharing it :)

Amy said...

Your garden is so full of my Austin favorites! The cigar plant and Mexican sage is a great contrast. I agree that red okra with its pale yellow blooms is a stunner. And I love the way ruellia looks in a big swath like your pink island.

The Violet Fern said...

I just love your garden and your morning view ... sorry(?) you will be leaving it for a time. Will you take any plants with you? Wish you the best on your new adventure and hope to hear about it here. Those okra flowers are really something.

noel said...


i'm enjoying touring your garden with you today, i'm really enjoying my visit. the red okra is striking and thats the first time i've seen pecans...btw i love the color combination of your house and!

cat said...

i absolutely love your garden! can't wait to see it in person again! :)


rohrerbot said...

Beautiful plants....I've never seen a pecan before and that was fun to see:) Thank you for sharing.

Birdwoman said...

What a wonderful garden you have! We have several plants in common but yours look much better than mine. Oh, and I have a "Bob" cat too - except mine is named Nicholas.

Diana said...

Your garden looks lovely as ever. And it was wonderful to see it in person on the tour! Has it been that long? Happy GBBD!

Carol said...

What a lovely, inviting view ... beautiful! Your garden looks well cared for ... maybe some gnomes. ;>)) Lucky you!

ConsciousGardener said...

Carol, did you notice that most shots are upclose...that's to hide the mess!

mss @ Zanthan Gardens said...

I didn't know that you'd be leaving your garden. That must engender an interesting mix of conflicting emotions. I'm a lot better at letting things go during the summer. I use to fight it and rail against it. I've learned that the strong will survive and the others come back in better seasons--if they are meant to. I'm not sure how I'd approach the idea of letting things go permanently. How much energy could I put into a place knowing I was going to leave it?

On the other hand, maybe I'd get more done. My current malaise stems from indulging to much in the idea that there's always tomorrow.

ConsciousGardener said...

Hey MSS, I'm just leaving temporarily...3-5 years, then we're coming's the renters I'm worried about.

David, Melanie and family said...

You have such a fun garden. I LOVE the blue wooden gate and all the garden art.
Great plants...I can tell they love growing in your garden.
I have two cats, but I'm not sure how to tell if they are garden cats. lol
One's a hunter, one's a just sit and look at stuff cat.
David /Tropical Texana/ Houston :-)

Bob said...

What ever it cost to put that window in---it was worth it.

ConsciousGardener said...

well David, I think if they move from work area to work area with you...they're a garden cat! I have 2 who do that, and get in my way when weeding!

Bob...the whole room was sort of planned around that's our favorite spot in the house!

Sunita said...

I've never seen red okra before! How interesting! Does it taste like the regular green ones?
And I'm quite envious of your hummingbird presence. We don't have a single one! well, the sunbirds do come close but I really do wish we had at least one hummingbird in India.
That passionflower is lovely! Does it develop into edible fruitor is it the ornamental kind?

Bob said...

Oh, also I'm glad the trellis fit. I made the little swivel ends so it would be a little flexable to the fit up. It looks good and I think the rose will cover it in no time.

ConsciousGardener said...

Sunita, the red is just as delicious, and the passion flower will produce fruit but not until it's mature, and I'm not sure when that will be.

Bob-I LOVE the trellis, the hinges are perfect! I have another project that I think you would enjoy making...and I still need to pay you so will you give me a buzz next time you're heading into town?

Cat said...

Yesterday I saw a honey bee french kissing a butterfly weed flower, ecstasy!

Pam/Digging said...

Leaving a garden to renters is hard. I know, as I did it for a year. You have to mentally let it go. You'll find many of your plants will survive, but those will try to take over everything else and it will turn into jungle.

I'm deeply curious to know where you're going, as you seem to have it all planned out so far in advance. Maybe I'll see you at a Go-Go and can ask you then.

ConsciousGardener said...

Hey Pam, if I knew I'd have said so. My husband will finish his PhD in 2013, same time as my youngest daughter and we'll go where there is a Post. Doc position for 3-5 years...unless we like it, then we'll stay longer. We just know we're life is in limbo. And, yes, it's hard to let it go...

Meredith said...

Change is good. Keeps us young so we don't become ol' fogies! Thanks for such a gorgeous tour of your garden. Your majestic sage looks different from my mystery plant -- maybe what I have is something else. Time to do some detective work!

Bonnie said...

The spider web arbor is AWESOME! Props to Bob for that!