I was too busy actually working in the garden to take pictures. Fall weather finally found my corner of Katy: I took full advantage of the cool temperatures and sunny skies and did my best to ignore the stiff breezes. I finally took off my gloves about 4:30, came in to grab the camera and proceeded to snap my way around Wit's End.
I planted these Amazon Rose Dianthus a couple of weeks ago. I think I may have to add a few more around the garden.
This is 'Teresa', a Salvia greggii mutation discovered by Texan David Steinbrunner and named after his wife. I bought this plant at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center fall sale in 2006 and was so underwhelmed (despite their rave reviews) that I had almost given up on her. Earlier this year I moved milady Teresa to this spot under an east facing window, where she's protected from the afternoon sun, then pretty much forgot about her. Evidently she thrives on inattention! Note that she's reverting to her parental hot pink on one branch.
One of my favorite old garden roses is Gartendirektor Otto Linne, seen here with the first bloom on Winter Honeysuckle, Lonicera fragrantissima. The latter's leaves still show the stress of too little rain over the summer and too much Ike in September.
It's not a bloom, per se, but the rosettes of this Flapjack Cactus, Kalanchoe thrysifolia, are as lovely as any bloom in my gardens.
I think I've found just the right spot for the Salvia regla, Mountain Sage. This one has been growing in front of my courtyard wall in the front garden for a year or so now. It's a little leggy, but I think some judicious pruning next year is the answer. When I saw one gallon pots of it at The Arbor Gate recently, plants that were covered in these red-orange blooms, I admit it: I succumbed to their lure. I need to get planted out today!
While I don't have much fall color in the usual sense of the phrase, I do have an abundance of fall colors in the garden. The Copper Canyon Daisy, Tagetes lemonii, is just getting started. Some gardeners find this plant an overenthusiastic grower and complain about its sprawling habit. I'm not one of them, though: how can I not love a plant that will soon be covered in these bright yellow blooms and continue that way through January? It responds well to pruning, even welcomes it. It's also a great passalong plant, since it roots where it touches.
Cigar Plant, Cuphea macropetala, sports tubular yellow and orange blooms.
Butterfly Vine, Mascagnia macroptera, clambers up, over, around and through whatever's nearby. It snakes along the ground and roots where it touches, making it another great passalong.
This purple Lantana is an upright variety introduced here in Houston by grower Heidi Sheesley of Treesearch Farms. Her description of it: Lantana trifolia - Fruity Pebbles Lantana – An unusual lantana, featuring highly ornamental fruit clusters. Flower clusters are lavender-pink. As the blooms fade, flower spikes elongate to form popcorn-like spikes of shiny lavender
fruit. Tough, perennial shrub averages 3’ tall. Sun, Moist, well drained soil. Also known as ‘Lavender Popcorn’ Lantana. The name comes from the fragrance of the flowers: they do have a faint aroma of Fruity Pebbles cereal!
One last picture and we'll call it a Bloom Day ... this is Purple Iochroma, Iochroma cyanea. I love these blooms but the plant gets a little rangy. I'm wondering if it would respond to more frequent light pruning but now is not the time to find out!
Thanks, as always, to Carol of May Dreams Gardens, our congenial and entertaining host for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day. Check out her Bloom Day post and those of her commenters to see what's blooming around the world!