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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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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day June 2010

The 'Blue River II' Hibiscus was the star of my first blog post on June 7, 2006. This year the ground warmed up slowly so there were no hibiscus flowers on June 7, 2010, but my Movealong plant came through for GBBD. Annieinaustin, Blue River II Hibiscus text
Four years ago I posted about two white 'Acoma' crepe myrtles that had been planted to soften a fence after 5 years of stressful living on a hot deck in terracotta containers. The left one looked like this in June 2006Annieinaustin, 2006 Acoma Crepe myrtles left
And the right one looked so pitiful in 2006 that I wasn't sure it could ever turn from a scraggly shrub into a treeAnnieinaustin, 2006 Acoma Crepe myrtles rightBut now they stand tall and in full bloom - so lovely that the recently murdered pink crepe on the other side of the fence barely impacts my garden Annieinaustin Acoma Crepe Myrtles 2010
Back in 2006 I tried in vain to snap a photos of the hummingbirds on salvias - now the 'Provence' lavender brings them closer to the windowAnnieinaustin Hummingbird in lavender
It's been a hot, buggy May & June, with enough rain for green grass and swarms of mosquitoes. Bird poop caterpillars (larvae of a Giant Swallowtail) reappeared on the Meyer's lemonAnnieinaustin, Giant Swallowtail caterpillar - this one is full grown but there are new eggs for the next generation. Annieinaustin giant swallowtail egg on citrus
Does anyone know how to ID swallowtail butterflies? Is this adult Swallowtail on the Purple coneflowers the right kind to have laid the eggs on the lemon tree? Annieinaustin, swallowtail butterfly on coneflower
Still-blooming Burgundy oxalis and just-starting Blue Plumbago cuddle up with a tropical milkweed seedling that blew in from last year's plant. It's a little too close to the sidewalk but I'll let it stay here just in case Monarch butterflies show up.Annieinaustin, Oxalis, plumbago, asclepiasThe cannas show buds just as daylily season winds down -
Flowers open daily on some the large daylilies but they'll run out of buds soon. Perovskia adds blue to Hemerocallis citrina, Hibiscus 'Blue River II' and 'Hot Lips' Salvia.Annieinaustin, hibiscus, daylilies, salvia I wonder if goldfinches can recognize the self-sown Sunflowers as the source of future treats. Can you see that bag of pecan caterpillars hanging to the lower left of the sunflower? How I wish for an archer to shoot an arrow through the webby stuff. Once the bag was opened wasps could have caterpillars as treats! Annieinaustin sunflower against sky
'Julia Child' made a few more butter-color roses under the white crepe myrtles. 'Belinda's Dream' made flowers, too- but they look way too ratty for photos.Annieinaustin Julia Child Rose
In front a bluebonnet lurks in a patch of Blackfoot daisies, refusing to cry uncle to summer's heat. Annieinaustin, June bluebonnet
In back an Orange Cosmos (maybe Cosmos sulphurea?) towers over a Texas Paintbrush in another patch of Blackfoot Daisies. Some of what grows in this garden came from a nursery or garden center. The plants that came from family and friends are called Passalong plants and those hauled from previous gardens could be called Movealong plants. But the cosmos falls in a different category.annieinaustin, orange cosmos Last fall I saw enormous beds of these flowers in every stage of bud, bloom and gone-to-seed, growing outside of our favorite Korean Restaurant. A few seeds just happened to fall into my pocket and then I just happened to save them and just happened to plant them a few months ago. Can I call it a Snitchalong plant?

For the round-up of Garden Blogs see head Blogger-wrangler Carol at May Dreams Gardens.
To see the botanical name of every single thing I can find in bloom check the list at Annie's Addendum.


  1. Annie,

    Exciting times in the garden with so much going on. Blue River II is amazing. Love the Crepe Myrtles too--they look gorgeous and full. It's always so rewarding to see our babies grow up, isn't it? LOL at your snitchalong cosmos. Those seeds could have just as easily blown on the wind into your lovely garden, or the birds could have dropped a few seeds along with their ...erm...load.

  2. I love the photos of the crepe myrtles...it is so nice to see how things change! So many things blooming there as always. What kind of hummingbird is that? You took a wonderful photo...I've never been able to do that, they move too quickly for me.

  3. A lovely bloom post as always, taking us back in time to see what was and then forward again to see what is. And "what is" is a garden full of blooms! Thank you for sharing your blooms with us again.

  4. You yard is rich in beauty. I get the butterfly you showed in the photo and certainly have NOT seen that bird poop caterpillar in spite of its romantic name. My roses are putting on their second seasonal bloom, but this time smaller and I am fighting the hatching of Japanese beetles which love their petals. No rodent decimation yet and the phlox are as fragrant as a new baby.

  5. "Bird poop caterpillars" that's a hoot-yes,they really do look like that-of course a protective mechanism.

    I also have a few "snitchalong" plants.

    The hibiscus looks so crisp and cool.

  6. What a fabulous post of color and life in the garden. My daughter in Houston has a Belinda's Dream that I helped her pick out, and her fence is covered with star jasmine. Such a different climate!

  7. I love the name "bird-poop caterpillars!" That started off my morning with a smile.

    The flowers are beautiful, Annie--between 'Blue River' and the white crepe myrtles, I can't remember why I don't particularly like white flowers. And 'Julia Child' is always such a sunny delight... :)

  8. I'm so glad Austin got in on some of that rain, what a relief for you to have green grass. Your garden is reveling in it. Congratulations on capturing a shot of a hummer. I hadn't thought about them visiting Lavender.

  9. Annie, I've never seen that white hibiscus before, it is stunning! Your bright whites looks so clean and cool in the summer heat, a nice scene for visually cooling. We need that already, don't we? By the way, great hummer and butterfly shots!

  10. Oh to have crepe Myrtles that grow that big and beautiful. They are great. All of your blooms are so pretty Annie. I enjoy seeing the wildlife in your garden too. Even if some of them have yucky names. I hope you are enjoying the summer. Happy GBBD.

  11. Those crepes have certainly gone to town now they are planted in the ground. Neighbors have a couple of those at their entrance way and they are pretty big trees. Perfect, as you say, for hiding the crepe murder. Why don't people get the message? The native cosmos may be a little invasive but anything that likes this weather is welcome in my garden. Yes, I have snitchalongs too. Plants, seeds- you name it. Great name. I pick up seeds here and there and think I will remember what they were and never do.

  12. Your white crepe myrtles look beautiful. Boy, they've really grown since I last saw your garden.

  13. Snitchalong plant - I love it! I can't believe how lovely your crapemyrtles look now. Just yesterday, as I was admiring my old crapemyrtle, I realized how much I take them for granted. Many people would love to have so much color for so long in the heat of summer.

    That's so strange about the bluebonnet still blooming. I've NEVER seen that before. And I'm jealous of your swallowtail larvae. I plant so many larval plants for the butterflies but rarely, if ever, get larvae. So different from when I lived in Austin!!

  14. Your garden is beautiful, Annie. I so enjoyed the past and present photos. The crepe myrtles are stunning, and I am interested that they are already blooming in Austin. Here in the Ozarks they don't start in until late July.

    According to my butterfly book, that swallowtail most probably is a tiger swallowtail, which is most definitely the one that has the "bird poop" caterpillars. These swallowtails also show up in a black form, where the wings are dark rather than yellow but you can still see the "shadow" of the tiger stripes.

  15. How could anyone kill a Crape Myrtle! OMG...yours are really lovely! I have quite a few snitchalong plants in my garden...I prefer to think of them as finding a new home;) hehe

  16. Beautiful hibiscus and a great shot of the hummingbird.

  17. Wow, what a transformation on those crapes! And it's wonderful that you've kept that beautiful hibiscus so long, since you get colder out there. Amazing hummingbird shot! You've got an outstanding garden. Yes, that swallowtail could be the parent to your new family.

  18. I'd love to see Blue River II in person. Those huge blooms are gorgeous! Your crepe myrtles have grown wondrously well in 4 years! How beautiful they are!
    Great shot of the hummer. It's difficult to capture them at the flowers, isn't it?
    The lavae of the Tiger Swallowtail is a big fat green caterpillar but your "bird poop" lavae is definitely from the Giant Swallowtail. We get lots of Tigers here and a few Black Swallowtails as well. Their caterpillars are very colorful...found on dill, parsley, fennel.
    'Julia Child' is glorious!
    My daylilies are budded and I'm anticipating lots of beautiful blooms.
    I have a few of those switchalong plants too :)
    It's always such a pleasure to visit your little paradise, Annie.
    Glad I finally made it!
    Happy summer!

  19. I meant to say 'snitchalong' :)

  20. Hi MorningGlories- the Blue River flowers had a bad summer 2009- so glad they rebounded.
    The cosmos would have had to blow quite a few miles!

    Thank you Leslie - I was advised to pitch them and start over...now glad I was stubborn.
    I'm pretty sure it's a black-chinned, the most common hummingbird here.

    Already some of 'what is' has turned into 'what was', MayDreams Carol- so hot and dry the flowers don't last.

    I see Swallowtails, Tabor, but am never sure which ones- just enjoy them! Leaf-cutter bees and some kind of beetles have wrecked the rose leaves. Your phlox sound wonderful!

    I didn't make up that name, Nicole - just liked it LOL

    It's sure a different climate from my native Illinois, too, Commonweeder! Thank you for stopping by.

    When they're little they could be called bird-snot caterpillars and be just as descriptive, Blackswamp Kim...I've always loved white flowers so don't think it's one of the things you grow into!

    We've had no rain lately, Mr McGregor's Daughter, but at least the lake-reservoirs have water this summer!

    These crepe myrtles can be all the beautiful they want, Lisa at Greenbow- but they better not get too much bigger...supposed to be semi-dwarf so they'll fit in that spot. Maybe they one zoned for Indiana is in development somewhere!



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