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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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Monday, October 18, 2010

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day October 2010

This is a Garden Bloggers Bloom Day post from Annie in Austin, writing at the Transplantable Rose Blog

The days are still warm here in Austin, but the nights are finally cooling down. La Nina has kept us very dry - the 12-inches of rain from Hermine came fast and left fast and were not part of a weather pattern... more of a weather event. Handwatering and milder weather have made some plants happy; tall trees and lower sun angles combine to make other plants stall from lack of light.

At this time of year the partially sunny front yard has flowers that equal the shadier back yard bunch so on our once-a-month Garden Bloggers Bloom Day quest for what's in flower we should check there first.

The Lycoris radiata/Red spider lilies from the previous post appear to be making seeds now. Annieinaustin, Lycoris gone to seedThis group is nestled into the front butterfly bed, a large oval border that was made by The Divas of the Dirt in 2008, on the spot where an Arizona Ash once grew. The imminent demise of that large tree inspired me to write the song in the sidebar.
annieinaustin front butterfly borderPurple Lantana, Gregg's Mistflower, Blackfoot Daisies, Bengal Tiger Cannas, Black & Blue Salvia, Salvia Nuevo Leon, seedlings of White Gaura, self-seeded Pink Gaura, young plants of yellow-flowered Damianita and a large Rosa mutabilis are in full bloom. On the street side a Forsythia sage/Salvia madrensis struggles to become established... it's half the size expected, but the buds promise blooms later this week
annieinaustin salvia madrensis budsThose are Blackfoot Daisies around the salvia - more of them brighten the parking strip to the west of the butterfly bed. They like good drainage and sun so until these two beds were made I didn't have much success with this pretty little evergreen native flower. Blackfoot daisies have a very pleasant scent if there are enough flowers open at one time and a swath like this can stop you in your tracks when you stroll down the sidewalk. annieinaustin, blackfoot daisies and gulf muhly

This parking strip garden was the 2009 Divas of the Dirt project - a year later the Gulf Muhly grass is so fabulous in bloom that the failure of the Mexican Feather grass isn't even noticed.
annieinaustin gulf muhly grass, blackfoot daisiesOn the South side of the birdbath the Mutabilis Rose is really well established - it was pruned in late summer but is filling out fast.
annieinaustin rosa mutabilis, bengal tiger cannaIn the Pink Entrance Garden on the North side of the drive 'Belinda's Dream' rose has a new flush of bloom, combined here with a no-name, rosy-colored gaura that was planted in February 2007.
annieinaustin, belindas dream roseIn back the brightest color comes from Orange cosmos. The first sowing produced enormous plants by mid-summer. Those plants died but new seedlings are now blooming, backed up by a blazing Pineapple sage/Salvia elegans in the hummingbird border.annieinaustin, orange cosmos

The previous post had photos of Scutellaria indica 'Dorota Blue', White ginger, Sweet Olive/Osmanthus fragrans and a video clip of Salvia vanhouttei, all still blooming. This time we'll look at a Firecracker plant - probably Russelia equisetiformis, a Passalong plant from my friend Ellen.
annieinaustin, Russelia firecracker plantNow check out the Aster frikartii blooming behind the dwarf Greek myrtle. Why is it blooming back there, you ask? Why isn't it out where it can be seen?
Because this is the one that bloomed - the other two had more light and air, but have become tiny non-flowering remnants of what they once were.annieinaustin, aster frikartii

The 'Julia Child' rose has flowers again - the new foliage looks pretty good but the older leaves show how insects have damaged it. These holes are round, so perhaps this is the work of leaf-cutting bees. annieinaustin, julia child rose

Here's the first flower on the Philippine violet. The plant is alive, but it had a bad year, reaching only 1/3 of its usual size.
annieinaustin, first flower barleriaI bought a large Malvaviscus 'Pam Puryear', AKA 'Pam's Pink' Turkscap in late spring. You might also hear it called Wax Mallow I'm not sure this variety will be hardy in my garden and after seeing Trisha Shirey's flower-laden Turkscap plants on Pam/Digging's blog wonder if it wants more sun to bloom well, but at least I've seen a few lovely flowers.
annieinaustin, pam pink malvaviscus

The white form of Turkscap-Waxmallow is blooming, too - but its leaves are tattered. annieinaustin, white turkscap

Mr Brown Thumb's post on the difference between Cardinal vine and Cypress Vine made me realize that Cypress vine is such a great reseeder its presence is taken for granted in my garden. Cypress Vine bloomed each year at our first Austin house and returns every year at this one, pleasing the hummingbirds, sending thousands of seeds out to sprout and be weeded out and growing into green, ferny blobs of foliage that can derail planned traffic patterns. annieinaustin, cypress vine blocks walk

When they run out of support they twine together and make enchanting patterns against the skyannieinaustin, cypress vine entwined in sky

But Ipomoea quamoclit seldom gets photo space on my blog so to make up for that, here are the star-shaped, pure red flowers of the Cypress Vineannieinaustin, closeup cypress vine flower
I'll leave you with the latest Moonflower Vine/Ipomoea alba photo. As long as it keeps blooming, I'll keep taking its picture.
annieinaustin, moonflower vineThis is the main post for May Dreams Carol's Bloom day event - head over to her blog to check out more than 100 other GBBD posts. To find an additional comprehensive list of everything blooming in my garden with botanical names look at the companion blog to the Transplantable Rose, Annie's Addendum. Happy GBBD from Annie in Austin


  1. What a nice collection of blooms Annie. I have the moon plant, Datura ?, instead of a vine. It has stopped blooming due to the dry weather we are having. Next year I will try a vine instead. Happy GBBD.

  2. Thanks for showcasing the cypress vine, Annie. Lisa (above) just sent me some seeds, so I'm excited to try this next year--I hope mine does as well as yours.

    Also, thanks for the i.d. on the Amaranth I pictured one day; I always like to have mysteries solved:)

  3. It's nice to see an appreciation of the cypress vine. What I usually see in the blogs that I follow are complaints about its aggressiveness and invasiveness or commonness, but I'm fond of the plant, especially because it is a great favorite of both hummingbirds and butterflies in my garden.

  4. I love the cypress vine... but the sweet little Phil. violet is my favorite from this post, I think. She's just so dainty and pretty! :)

  5. So nice that your garden is coming back to life...you've got lots of sweet blooms this month!

  6. I'm glad your weather has become milder, Annie. It must be so much more pleasant to get out into your garden now. I hope you get some good rain soon. We've had more than our share lately and I'd gladly send some your way.
    Your pink garden is lovely at them moment. I especially love the Mutabilis rose.
    Belinda's Dream is beautiful with the Gaura.
    I had both the Cypress and Cardinal Vines this summer, but they were tiny and in pots due to not getting them planted in the garden. I never did get a space cleared for them. I always bite off more than I can chew. Perhaps I'll do better next year :)
    The few flowers were much enjoyed though.
    Yours is lovely with those pretty red 'stars'. I love the way it twines into the air.
    The Moonflower is glorious, as always.
    Happy October Bloom Day! Hasn't the year gone fast?

  7. Your photo of 'Belinda's Dream' makes me nostalgic for my old rose. And now I have a hankering for 'Mutabilis' too. Sadly, both shall remain unfulfilled since I lack sun in the back yard and have too many deer in the front.

    Thanks for the link to my spa garden post.

  8. Hi Lisa at Greenbow - the moonflower vine is an annual and it's bloomed every year, but it does need water to bloom. I had a datura -got a few flowers but it shriveled & dried up, too ;-[

    Once you have Cypress vine you may always have it, Prairie Rose,- just never in the same place! But yours will be special because it came from Lisa. Have you seen Pam/Digging's post on our friend Philip's East Side Patch garden that was on the Open Days Tour? It's amazing what Amaranth can do here!

    I agree, Birdwoman! When we bought this house the neighbors told me there were no hummingbirds in the area, but we moved in with a Cypress vine in a pot...it bloomed & ta-da - Hummingbirds!

    The Philippine violet is different from year to year, Blackswamp Kim - the flowers on my three plants look the same, but the plant height is anywhere from 1-foot tall to 5-feet tall.

    It's strange to look at other GBBDays for October, Leslie - there are a few constants, but the Cast Members change so much from year-to-year and who will Star is usually a surprise - like that Salvia vanhouttei!

    It's pleasant, but we still have to spray-up to work outside Kerri - mosquitoes are such a drag here!
    At our other house we couldn't plant the Cypress Vine in the ground, so grew it in a large deck pot with a trellis for it to twine on - think that could work for you next year? Although you have so many wonderful flowers in your garden there is no way you'd miss one vine ;-}

    Your old front garden was perfect for roses, Pam/Digging, and you did get to grow them and see them in full glory. Your posts about 'Belinda's Dream' are the main reason I have it now.

    Thanks for the comments,


  9. I'm relieved to see that I'm not the only Austinite with a lot of pinks and reds in my garden in October. I know it happens every year but I was trained as a child to think of October as an orange, yellow, red-leaved month.

    Always glad to see the lovely 'Julia Child" take the stage again in your garden. October is a great month for roses. Now if only we'd get some rain...just not a foot in one day.

  10. Annie, you've got a tremendous bloom day happening. You know, I had the same problem with my asters this year. That tends to happen now & then. I bought a few more to stick in & we'll see if the old ones rally next year. Mmm, I'm going to hunt for a white turks!

    Oh, my P. violets either died or are really small. That killer cold was something else.

  11. My red spider lilies look like yours now, too. I was pleased they lasted almost two weeks, though. I love the combo you have pictured second. And the contrast of shapes in the pink world of Belinda's Dream and gaura is beautiful!

  12. Nice collection of blooms and two of my favorite Ipomoeas in one blog post is always nice to see.

  13. Lots of lovelies in your garden, Annie!

  14. Annie, I dearly love cypress vine. It grows really well in two places in my garden. I'm thinking about putting it with the Grandpa Otts morning glory where the 'New Dawn' roses once grew. Thanks for your bloom day post. Pretty.~~Dee

  15. I love all the plants you selected for GBBD. They're some of my favorites. I also can't get enough of the moonvine. I wish I had it growing right outside my bedroom window (which would be impossible since it's on the second floor).

    Interesting about your 'Pam's Pink'. I have a pink one (although I don't think it's actually 'Pam's Pink' because the flowers are not so long). Mine has also not bloomed this year and it's in shade. But then again, I thought I had lost it to the Big Freeze so maybe it's still recovering. Perhaps I should try it in a new spot.

  16. The red is still here, MSS of Zanthan Gardens, but the gold of Mexican Mint marigold has begun.

    The white turkscap were inexpensive starter plants from Natural Gardener, Linda from CTG - think I should look for another one and give it a better spot to see what happens.

    The Lycoris were fun, Iris - hope the leaves coming up means those bulbs have settled in ;-]

    Once you get hooked on annual vines, there's no going back, is there Mr Brown Thumb?

    Thanks, Cindy from Katy!

    The cypress vine can't grow in this spot next year, Dee of Red Dirt, because the walkway is being redone now. It's in other places, so no worry for the hummers! It should be eye-popping with Grandpa Ott.

    Hi Jean - I grew moonflower vine in Illinois, too - but sometimes it barely bloomed before frost got it.
    In the past week there was one more flower on the Pam's Pink and that was it! If it suddenly starts opening buds once the pecan leaves fall and sun streams down, that will be a sign my Pam needs to relocate ;-]

    Thanks for commenting,


  17. I somehow missed this when you posted it, but I'm glad, because it brought me here today, when the weather is horridly cold and dreary. Seeing your blooms cheered me right up, especially the Ipomoea quamoclit. The flowers are petite, but just so spectacularly rich in colour.

  18. Breathtaking photos!

    The 'Julia Child' looks great and healthy. Anyway I don't think the leafcutter bees were the culprit. I have leaf cutter bees attacking my garden too, usually they take much more and create plenty of holes, and always the edges of leaves are cut away, not the middle.

    Well, the damage is tolerable as always :) Can't wait to see more pictures of your garden and your roses!


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