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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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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

It's Good to See You Again

 Written by Annie in Austin for her Transplantable Rose blog

The ground is already covered in leaves and twigs and pecan husks so that August looks like Autumn, but the days are still hot. An inch-and-a-half of rain last weekend brought a few surprises this week, including flowers that were not seen last summer.

One clump of Schoolhouse/Oxblood lilies in the front woodland/seep garden is in bloom - and the flowers are Rose-red instead of dark red. This is the earliest date yet for these bulbs, which usually come in September. 

A few flowers opened the expected Oxblood color in back

The long cold spells in January & February 2011 killed my small shrubby Bauhinia forficata not just to ground level but below. I really thought this passalong from my friend Ellen was gone forever but by midsummer a few shoots came up from some live piece of root deep underground. The shoots were too small to bloom last summer and I had doubts they could do it this year. But I was wrong - the large white flowers of the Brazilian Orchid Tree are blooming again.

A few tomato plants were cut back, most died, but there are 3 seedling tomato plants almost mature enough to bloom. I've lived here too long to call a tomato "ours" until it is safe inside and on the plate, but we can hope!
We do get most of the peppers - just a few lost to birds, insects or other animals. 'Jalora' is growing under one of the cages we made last summer.

 A mix of 'Jaloro' and 'Mariachi' smelled wonderful when roasting and Philo liked them just fine.

A patch of  Malvaviscus - Red Turkscaps was planted in the front years ago. It's stayed alive and managed to bloom last summer but sparingly on a few straggling stems. The plant is almost unrecognizable this year - partly because the weather has not been as hot and dry, partly because an overhanging Arizona Ash trees had to come down last spring. This bed still gets partial shade from a live oak but a little more sun as well as a little more water has made this plant thrive.

One more nice surprise - the white form of this Malvaviscus or White Turkscap has grown in the Secret Garden since 2006, never thriving but surviving. Last year it didn't make one single flower.
And this year? As my friend Vi would say, it's still "not setting the world on fire", but it is alive, and it has flowers and buds, and it looks reasonably contented to be here. I guess that goes for the garden as a whole, as well as the gardener. 

 Written by Annie in Austin for her Transplantable Rose blog.