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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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Sunday, September 09, 2007

Blue and Red and Yellow

It's primary colors today at Circus~Cercis - another three ring show:
* * *

First look toward the Blue Ring to view the successful finish of the Blue Planet Run.

Mary's husband Paul followed the team across much of the US portion of the run - he took this photo of Mary and her brother Jay at the completion of the Elmira run, and Mary's mom sent it to me for this blog. The adventures of the team as they traveled the globe were quite wonderful to read about - even with the injuries, losses of luggage and clothing and exhaustion.

To see Mary cross the finish line in NYC go to the Blue Planet Website.

If you want to make a donation to help the cause of clean water, this link will take you to the right page. Congratulations to the entire team and their families!
* * *

In ring two we present the oxblood lilies:

The Rhodophiala bifidia are blooming! They're also called School House Lilies.

Most of my clumps of school house lilies were shared by MSS of Zanthan Gardens. Since hers were in bloom a good 10 days before mine appeared, I'm not only delighted but relieved to see them! Here's a Zanthan Gardens profile of these lovely flowers. Julie at the Human Flower Project has posted an article on them by Jill Nokes.

* * *

In ring three are some showgirls of September, all wearing yellow:

The hanging bells of yellow brugmansia - Angel's Trumpet wear a train of Blue Plumbago.

Our yellow 'Julia Child' rose still sends up a flower or two every couple of days.

The yellow Plumeria/Frangipani has opened in pale gleaming yellow - not as flashy, but more fragrant than the pinky-red plumeria.

As to refreshment - no lemonade yet at Circus~Cercis, but a couple of the Meyer's Lemons are turning yellow.


  1. What a delicious post. As pretty as the oxblood lilies are, I admit that it was the weathered foo that stole my attention in that picture. With a face like that... does he have a story to match?

  2. Yes, BlackswampKim, he does! I bought him at Molbak's Nursery when on a trip to Seattle a dozen years ago, and my daughter lugged the heavy statue in her backback through the airports.

    She got stopped by security until they were sure he wasn't hollow!

    We'd seen an amazing aisle of foo dogs on pedestals in Allerton Park down near the University of Illinois at Champaign, and couldn't resist owning a starter version.


  3. The color of those bulbs are so cool. I've never seen bulbs so dark before.

  4. That's quite a three-ring circus you've got going on. I love those yellows!

  5. Another Mary from NC - love it. It's fun to read her story and watch her cross the finish line!

    Annie, you have so much growing around you - whatever will you do during the dead of winter? I always enjoy your musings and beautiful greens, pinks, reds, blues, yellows...

    We still have brown but that might change soon :o)

  6. delightful post as always, Annie. I'll swap you Meyer lemons for bakeapple or partridgeberry jam. I hear about these lemons but i've never seen them, except through posts such as yours.

    They wouldn't do at all well on the chilly mountain scree slops of Gros Morne, that's for sure!

  7. Circus~Cercis looks wonderful with lots going on. Oxblood lilies would be exciting enough but to also have the angel's trumpets... Do they smell as good as I've read?

    Carol at May Dreams Gardens

  8. Well, my plumeria (the yellow one I wrote about before) is tucked under some frees just beyond my bed and I haven't checked out the scent! I'll have to go out there tomorrow and take a whiff of it! Thanks for the tip! I meant to move the plant earlier in the season, but we put a kitchen in out back and roofed over its previous home. Seemed happy here, even though it's not as prominent for me to enjoy as i'd like...might have to move it if I should be sniffing it!

  9. Chigiy, I like the bulbs, too - and just had to take a photo.

    Pam/Digging, some of my yellow flowers were a fizzle this year - like the coreopsis. The size of the brugmansia was a surprise.

    Mary - it's fun for me to think that I knew this athlete when she was an infant - when I think about this Mary and you great bloggers named Mary it makes me wonder whether parents could change the world by giving that name to their daughters ;-]

    In winter we have pansies, dianthus and snapdragons for color, and some of our trees and shrubs bloom them. Winter isn't usually very dead around here!

    Hi Jodi - we had a couple of the lemons last year so we know we like them! One small tree is in a pot that comes inside but we planted another in the ground. We may have to make a tent around it with a light bulb when we get a freeze.

    I only notice the scent of the Angel trumpets when I'm right next to them, Carol - it's pleasant but not strong.

    Is your plumeria in a container, Diana? Mine come into the garage in winter - then are set outside. My plumerias don't broadcast the scent - you have to be close.

    Thank you,


  10. Oooh... that's an even better story than I had hoped. Thanks for sharing it, Annie. :)

  11. So many nice yellows...a color I am beginning to dabble in. If I can find enough yellows as pretty as yours I will be brave and expand my horizons!

  12. Annie, I love the fleshy yellow petals on the frangipani, they even look like they smell wonderful. Your yellow bloomers are all very exotic and pleasing to the eye, and Julia Child would be proud of her rose!

  13. A very noble deed is being done at the Blue Planet Project; I wish them all the best.
    Oxblood lilies are charming. I love their deep red color.
    The lemons look very promising. I guess, there will be refreshments at Circus~cercis within a week.

  14. Sometimes there are advantages to being late - I too was wondering about the foo dog (I think of them as Chinese Restaurant Lions). I enjoyed the oxblood lily story at the Human Flower Project, and I see that Yucca Do offers them for sale, and claims they are hardy to zone 6b. Hmmmm....

    The Blue Planet Run souds like a very worthy cause.

  15. The brugmansia looks fantastic. Mine always waited until fall to bloom but I think it was because it was on the south side of the house and didn't start getting enough sun until this time of year. Yours is on the east side, right?

  16. I have always admired folks who can run. How do they keep going past the mailbox????
    Your lilies are the most awesome red!!!

  17. Oh boy, a circus!!
    I just can't imagine running all those miles! Congrats to Mary and all on a remarkable and selfless feat. Great picture of triumph :)
    Love those school house lilies. Annie, the red Frangipani is lovely, but the yellow is my favorite with it's soft cream edging the yellow. I wanted to carry them as my wedding bouquet, but it was the wrong time of year for their blooms.
    Your garden reflects your personality... pleasant, playful, perky and colorful :)
    I'd love to taste those luscious lemons!

  18. I loved the circus theme - congratulations to Mary! That is quite the feat!

    The Oxblood lilies are a gorgeous colour and look great besides the foo dog - just read its history after Kim's comment. That is hilarious ... your daughter is amazing.

    The yellow showgirls are beautiful, especially the Angel's Trumpet with the trailing Plumbago.

    Oh I'd love to try those lemons.

  19. A lovely and rather fragrant post Annie. I love that Frangipani; the flowers are real pretty. What a pity that we can't smell them on the internet.

    I find it amusing that eventhough we live so far apart, we still have a few plants in common: plumbago, brugmansia and lemons too. I even have a lime in my garden at the moment. There's a fruit almost ready for picking.

    The School House Lilies are very elegant!

  20. It seemed to have happened again. I post a comment and it vanishes into the ether. I have to remember to do the word verification twice. Anyway my comment was how lovely the brug and rose looked. I thought of buying a brug but the thought of hauling the large plant and pot into the house for the winter, keeping it alive and hauling it back out kept me from doing so. The plumerias look lovely and to catch the windblown fragrance is worth the effort to grow the plant. I believe the yellow/white flowers are the most fragrant. It was the preferred flower for lei making in Hawaii. Can you believe we only tasted the Meyer lemon last year! I read that it was introduced in 1908 but I only saw it in the grocery store last year. It was very juicy and seemed to have a less sour taste which suits me better. I guess they can be easily grown indoors in a pot so I should see if I can buy a plant though maybe it would be less effort to just buy the fruit.

  21. Yellow plumeria is my favorite. Since I will never have it here my husband bought me a lovely necklace instead.

    Your brugmansia looks huge. I'm not sure if our season is long enough here but I'd love to try some along with the datura that I love so much. I love your comment "Angel's Trumpet wear a train of Blue Plumbago." I had to look up the plumbago and did find some that will grow here and I could certainly use more fall color.

  22. I love visiting your Texas garden and seeing such differnt flowers. Your Julia Child rose and plumeria really caught my eye. I must be drawn to yellow tonight. That rose just looked perfect!

  23. I think the only thing I might be able to grow here is the Julia Child Rose, but I want it all. Especially the ox blood lilies. They are stunning. THe Brugmansia is awesome as well. I think I could grow it as a potted plant and haul it inside in the winter. Thanks for sharing your blooms.

  24. What a difference a few "zones" makes! I was drooling over the Plumeria and the hanging bells. Wow!


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