Wednesday, July 15, 2009

In The Heat of The Moment ...



It's hard to get motivated for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, the brainchild of Carol of May Dreams Gardens, when all around you are signs of pending devastation. As I ankled it around the garden looking for blooms, I found myself sighing in frustration and despair. When even the Barbados Cherry plants, those most stalwart of drought tolerant natives, lose their healthy green color and droop, I know the garden is in dire straits. Nonetheless, I do have blooms to share, although many of them are a little worse for wear at the end of the day.

Blackfoot Daisy actually looks pretty good. Not so the birdbath.

At the end of the day, the vivid red-orange blooms of the Bauhinia galpinii
are a shadow of themselves.


Batface Cuphea are one of the stalwarts in the summer garden.


Profusion Apricot zinnias tolerate the heat and drought well.


Abelmoschus, however, has a tougher time.


That this poor daylily is blooming at all is a wonder. This morning, it was a clear bright red with an almost black eye. At day's end, however, it's lost much of its luster.


Thank goodness for Bright Lights Cosmos!


This Cleome 'Sparkler Rose' was planted about 10 days ago. I washed off the peat mix
and puddled it in. It hasn't skipped a beat.


This is one of the Clematis I rescued from Lowe's last year, either Fireworks or Dr. Ruppel. It's coming along slowly but I have
high hopes for it.


I am really taken with Calliandra aka Fairy Duster aka Powderpuff Plant.
Once established, they seem to handle heat and drought really well.


I might have to plant more Mexican Bauhinia trees. I love these delicate
blooms. It does seem to be a very slow grower.


Lantana's blooming quite happily and the foliage hasn't
been attacked by spider mites yet. I expect they'll show up, though.

This is one of many Hamelias planted throughout the front gardens.
When I first started gardening, I didn't like these plants. Now I can't
imagine the garden without them.


Erythrina crista-galli, Fireman's Cap, never fails to wow me
with its intense red blooms.


This mystery Salvia is probably Mystic Spires. It was one of the Head Gardener's clearance table purchases at Lowe's.


This white Plumbago gets NO water whatsoever. It's planted in a
utility easement on the back fence and has to fend for itself. Take
note, heat zone gardeners!



Purple Iochroma isn't quite as blue as it looks in this picture (that
would be pretty cool, actually). It's a lovely rich purple, though.

We'd be at our wits' end (instead of at Wit's End) were it not for verbenas.


And Zinnias ... thank goodness for Zinnias!


I guess the Head Gardener shouldn't be quite so downcast about the state of the garden. There's a lot in bloom despite the inclement heat and the continued lack of substantial rain. I still plan to have her out there first thing tomorrow morning, though, wrangling hoses. We've got to do what we can to make sure there are a few blooms for August's GBBD!

16 comments:

Caroline said...

Your zinnias and verbenas are lovely. My zinnias have not returned as I'd hoped - only a few blossoms so far - and I think I have one (one!) verbena blossom. And you helped me remember - your blog is where I read about the hazards of peat mix in Central Texas gardens! Thanks for the reminder.

Katie said...

Wow, could have fooled me! You have lots in bloom and it all looks great. I especially love the zinnias.

Leslie said...

We can thank Carol for getting us to focus on what's in bloom...that way we got to see that you do have a fair number of lovely blooms! Including white plumbago...I think I forgot there was a white plumbago. I may need one now...

beckie said...

I am surprised to see anything green and blooming! Hvae been watching your temps and lack of rain on the weather channel. You are brave souls to endure it all.

Zinnias are a gift aren't they? And ask for so little. I really like powder puff-very unusual.

Hang in there-it has to get better one day soon.:)

Carol said...

Whatever the Head Gardener is doing, it's working because there are a lot of blooms in your corner of Katy! Looks like you've found quite a few flowers that take the heat and keep on blooming!

Carol, May Dreams Gardens

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

You've got some tough plants there. I'm amazed at how much some of those flowers fade in the heat & sun. (Probably much like the Head Gardener.) I always love seeing the Bat-faced Cuphea, but my favorite in your garden now is the Calliandra. It's so cool. You're hard work is paying off with so much in bloom inspite of the intense heat and drought. I'm very impressed.

Annie in Austin said...

You know, Cindy, an array like this would be considered fabulous if it were compared to 90% of the yards in the US...maybe it's seeing so many monthly Bloom Day posts by equally addicted gardeners that makes you think you don't have many flowers! My Blackfoot Daisies are doing well, too, but I couldn't get a good photo.

Uh...white plumbago, in utility easement with no water? Maybe my underperforming plant needs to be transplanted and ignored!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Linda/Central Texas Gardener said...

Cindy, everything is lovely! You wouldn't think it was summer at all. You've given me tons of new ideas for my garden. Glad to know someone else treasures the white plumbago like I do. It's not always the easiest to find, but worth the hunt.

Meadowview Thymes said...

I think your flowers look great in spite of the heat and no rain Cindy. I need to get verbena. We had them when I was a little girl and I remembering loving them.

Rose said...

Cindy, you have so much blooming in spite of the heat! I love zinnias; mine aren't ready to bloom yet, but what a tough plant! I first saw the Fairy Duster last winter when I visited Older Daughter in Arizona and thought they were so interesting. If they can grow in the Arizona desert, I'm sure they won't mind a little Texas heat and drought! I've fallen in love with agaves, too, but mine is a houseplant here. A belated happy Bloom Day!

Vikki said...

Cindy ... Here in Friendswood it is also hard to get motivated. It has been hard to even go outside it has been so hot hot hot!!! Your miscanthus, however, are doing awesome and I think of you and your lovely garden every time I see them! Vikki

Linda/patchwork said...

You have so much blooming! It's good to know your Plumbago is holding up so well without water. Hmmmm....I think I need a white one.
Thanks for sharing.~~Linda...

rambleonrose said...

Your garden looks great despite the challenging weather!

Cindy, My Corner of Katy said...

Caroline, nice to see you here! I need to do a follow up post on the peat issue. I've got some recent observations to back me up!

Thanks, Katie! Zinnias are butterfly magnets and their colors can stand up to our intense sun.

Leslie, I need more white plumbago, I think! I may pin down a branch of the alley plant and see if I can get it to root.

Beckie, we got a little cool front on Friday morning. It was only 87 degrees when I came in at noon! Compared to what we've had, it was delightful!

Carol, I should make a list of everything that's blooming and count my blessings!

MMD, I need to take some before & after shots: blooms in the morning and then the same ones again in the evening. The difference is unsettling sometimes.

Annie, thank goodness we have SOME plants that thrive in heat and drought conditions! I have to be careful not to overwater them when I'm making my rounds with the hose. Blackfoot Daisy gets very upset if it gets too wet!

Linda, one of our local growers used to grow the white plumbago in 4 inch pots. I wonder if he still does? It would be easier than trying to root a cutting.

MT, I think I need even more verbenas. I've found that the cut-leaf varieties do better for me than those like Homestead Purple with the large crinkly leaves. I'm not sure why.

Rose, I hope you have that Agave well out of the way so you don't poke yourself! Hey, I just bought one with leaves that aren't quite so sharp. It's called 'Gem' and is supposed to be a small shrubby plant. I need to Google it & learn more.

Vikki, I've been missing the backdrop those Miscanthus provided and wondering if I should have kept them! I'm glad they're doing so well for you. I just bought some Gulf Coast Muhlys to go along that garage wall. I'm hoping to get them planted this week!

Linda/Patchwork, thanks for stopping by! I hope you can find the White Plumbago. Y'all are making me wish I had more of them, too!

Ramble, the big picture isn't as pretty as I'd like in my garden but I guess that's asking a lot of it right now.

Thanks, y'all!

Gail said...

That you get out there day after day when the heat is a horrific as it's been is the definition of stalwart gardener! You are the best Cindy...thank you for sharing. gail

Layanee said...

Hey Cindy, great blooms and which is that butterfly. I love it. Send me some please.