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Annie in Austin
Welcome! As "Annie in Austin" I blog about gardening in Austin, TX with occasional looks back at our former gardens in Illinois. My husband Philo & I also make videos - some use garden images as background for my original songs, some capture Austin events & sometimes we share videos of birds in our garden. Come talk about gardens, movies, music, genealogy and Austin at the Transplantable Rose and listen to my original songs on YouTube. For an overview read Three Gardens, Twenty Years. Unless noted, these words and photos are my copyrighted work.
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Saturday, September 09, 2006


This photo was taken at a place I dearly love, the Elisabet Ney museum in the Hyde Park area of our town.
Tomorrow is Museum Day in Austin – some locations are open free of charge, others have special events for the day and a few have food involved. Here’s a link to the Austin Museum Partnership.

There’s an Iris sale at Zilker Botanical Gardens, [today and tomorrow] sorry - it was Saturday only - so no new iris for me, darn it!.

Scroll to September 9th for details.
I grew at least 50 varieties of Iris in Illinois; some were hybrid cultivars with fancy names and fancy pricetags, while my passalong plants bore personal names like "Ruth's prairie iris", "Dad's blue Siberian" or "Vi's dwarf white".
I liked them all, and planted many tall-bearded, quite a few dwarf-bearded, a handful of Siberian and a few species like reticulata and pseudocorus.
In this 10-year old photo you can see a couple of the bearded iris that grew in our front garden in Illinois. [I have no resistance to the purple shades.]
The varieties of bearded iris is stuck at #4 in our present garden, but the numbers may go higher as more lawn is converted to mixed borders. Along with producing lovely flowers, the plants seem to do well here, so why not?

This is an interesting time to be an Austin gardener who also enjoys reading about Austin gardening. In addition to long-time local garden sites like Soul of the Garden, [from our tireless public-media multi-tasker Tom Spencer], Garden Bits by naturalist/photographer Valerie, and Zanthan Gardens from M Sinclair Stevens, there is a site on herbs and herb gardening called Horsetail Haven from Ann Marie.

While not primarily a garden blog, 'Rantor' also posts entries about what's in bloom in South Austin at Rantomat. The Hill Country landscape is frequently the subject at Lifescapes, by mystery writer Susan Wittig Albert, the creator of the herb-themed 'China Bales' series. Susan Albert lives to the west of Austin, but we'll count her as one of us!

Pam Penick has been writing and posting incredible photos at Digging for quite awhile, with newer blogs R Sorrell’s Great Experiment and my Transplantable Rose beginning within weeks of each other in June.

On August 28th, we heard a welcome new voice when Austin Susan started telling us garden stories at South of the River. A few other sites that sometimes talked about gardening, like Martha's, are not active now, but may return some day. Are there any more local garden writers that I've missed?

I'm happy to be one of the Austin Garden Bloggers in such an interesting town.

Sunday AM: I think the Susan Albert link will work now.


  1. I'm envious. I don't know too many other Indianapolis, or for that matter, Indiana gardener/bloggers. I'll have to see if I can find some!

  2. You Austonians are quite the literary bunch! So many blogs! How great to have Museum Day. So what's it going to be, museums or the Iris sale? Love your photos.

  3. I love irises too - and am slowly getting more and more (I can't resist the purple shades either). Many of the ones that I have now were given to me when I was in school in Michigan from a woman that worked in our lab that had a beautiful garden - I then gave some to my mom before I moved to Florida, then when I moved to SC, my mom brought me some of them. I love having them in my garden again! If I were in Austin, I'm sure I'd be at the iris sale! Let us know what you get!!

  4. Lucky you... the garden community here is either practically nonexistent or I'm simply outside of it. I do know a few other local garden bloggers, though, so I have hope! :)

    BTW, I love your new profile picture. Is that you as a young girl?

  5. Carol, at Zanthan Gardens there's a link to "Hands in the Dirt" from Indiana, described as 'a small wooded townlet in Indianapolis' on the header.

    LostRoses and Pam, I misread a notice and thought the iris sale was both days. We're looking at the museum list right now.

    As for citizens of our town - the name "Austinite" is almost always used by bloggers, TV, press and organizations.

    Good luck with your garden community, Kim. My photo is from the fifties, so no chance I'll be recognized. The "shielding self from the sun" seemed appropriate after this summer!


  6. When you put that photo up, I knew it was you right away...
    I love iris. Right now I have two types of purple iris, and some pale yellow ones, too. I wish I had known about the iris sale... I'd have probably gone.

  7. Thanks, Annie. That's one I had checked out before, but I didn't keep the url.

  8. I'm thrilled to be considered "a welcome new voice." Comments like that will inspire me to keep writing at the same time that reading what you all are writing -- and showing -- about your gardens is inspiring me to keep gardening.

  9. Aww, thanks for the kind reminder of my past g-blogging days...

    Here's my garden update:
    -- Nutgrass, nutgrass, nutgrass
    -- Crispy grass
    -- Antique roses soldiering on
    -- Mex. feather grass is the hero of my drought
    -- Planning for more grasses, more groundcover this Fall, as babykins is getting mobile and I bet I'll have even LESS time to garden!

    Maybe we'll get more rain tonight...

  10. This month's cover story in Cottage Living is about another Austin gardener. I just happened to pick up a copy of the magazine at the grocery store last week. I'm starting to think that everybody in Austin is a gardener. :-)


  11. RSorrell, you're the third person to say that -pretty funny.

    Carol you now have some Hoosiers!

    Hi Susan! You're in the links now.

    MarthaChick, it's an honor to have you as a reader, thank you!

    Entangled, my husband and I toured that garden a few years ago and liked it very much. I will look for a copy of the magazine - this house probably could be considered a cottage, I think. Oh - you're in the links, too - should have been there already.

  12. What a rich and diverse town you live in! And your irises make me rethink my bias against bearded iris because of how fast their foliage turns ratty. I just do siberian now, and Japanese. (ML at Full Fath.)


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