Welcome to my zone 9a habitat garden near Houston, Texas.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

An Easter parade of blossoms

A couple of weeks into the season, spring really is "bustin' out all over." Between the plants and the butterflies and the birds, there is so much going on in my yard that I can't decide where to look next. One could get a crick in one's neck just trying to make a decision.

Wandering around the yard this Easter Sunday, I was delighted to see some "firsts" among my bloomers, as well as a lot of new life breaking out everywhere.

At last fall's Bulb Mart, I bought several new bags of Dutch iris bulbs in various colors, because I have learned to my great happiness that this is an iris that will actually bloom for me! And this is my very first bloom of the spring. There are some yellow ones nearby that are probably going to be blooming by tomorrow.

And speaking of yellow, this is my first bloom from the Hinckley columbines that I added this winter.

The wild oxalis has been blooming for a while. Now the purple oxalis is joining in the fun.

This is my very first bluebonnet of the season from a packet of mixed wildflower seeds that I purchased at Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center last fall.

Nearby is this little "bonnet" which seems a little confused about the concept.

The 'Tangerine Dream' crossvine fully opened its first blossoms overnight.

The Gaura lindheimeri 'Siskiyou Pink' offered up some pretty blooms today, too.

The dwarf white loropetalum "fringe flower" that I bought at Mercer's March Mart had several blooms today.

The indefatigable and indominatable salvia never lost its green all winter, so I knew it would be blooming soon, here...

...and here, and in several places around the yard.

These are not the "first blooms" of the California poppies, but they are coming into full bloom now.

Likewise the Clerodendron thomsoniae 'glory bower' or 'bleeding heart' vine has been blooming for a while but looked especially nice today.

The butterfly of the day might be this Pipevine Swallowtail.

And the bird of the day might be one of several but could be this little Tufted Titmouse sitting on the muscadine vine that is just beginning to leaf out.

Along with all the other excitement in the garden today, there are several unexpected resurrections taking place.

I thought for sure this hibiscus was dead, but then all these little green buds appeared.

This is the bauhinia that I told you about a few days ago, the one that sat in a pot in my garage for three months without benefit of water or sunshine. Now it is out in the sun and coming to life again. (Those pink blossoms are from a nearby redbud.)

And finally, I never expected to see any growth from these "dead sticks" again:

But there it is! See those fragile sprouts? This is my 'Pride of Barbados' Caesalpinia pulcherrima and it's alive!

Miracles happen in the garden every day. One just has to open one's eyes to see them.


  1. Your garden blog is so encouraging! I'm just starting out, and am looking forward to having as nice a yard as you do in a few years! If you've got any tips for us just starting out, I'd love to hear them!

  2. Thanks for your kind comment, eric. My best advice to a new gardener – or an old gardener for that matter – is to start with the soil. Improve your soil with as much organic matter as possible. It is hard to overdo it. Second, plant what you like. Your taste will change over time, but that’s okay, too. The garden is all about change. Third, don’t be afraid to kill plants. Our experiments don’t always work, but we can always learn from them. Dead plants make for better gardeners. Good luck with your garden!