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

Friday, March 30, 2012

This week in the garden - #9

This week in the garden the blooms are coming in fast and furious.

The 'Dortmund' rose is blooming and already a pair of tiny pollinators has found it. But the 'Dortmund isn't the only rose in bloom.

 'Belinda's Dream' is in full bloom.

The pink Knockouts like their new home by the veggie garden gate where I moved them last winter and they are showing it with a profusion of blossoms.

The yellow Knockouts - 'Radsunny' - open with a bright yellow bloom which fades to a pale, almost white, shade of yellow as the bloom ages.

The 'Monkey's Business' floribunda rose that has performed so well for me over the last couple of years has a new home next to my little fish pond this year and it is almost ready to flood the area with its bright yellow color. I find its buds very attractive, too.

The old 'Caldwell Pink' polyantha rose is showing its perfect little bouquets of tiny blooms.

It's amaryllis time in the garden and one of my favorites is the hardy amaryllis St. Joseph's Lily. This is an heirloom plant for the South. It is one tough bulb that can stand up to conditions in our gardens, and I speak as one who doesn't have much success with most bulbs. St. Joseph, though, is a winner for me.

I got a start of 'Laura Bush' petunias from a friend a few years ago and since then the plants have reseeded widely in my yard to the point that they've become "weeds" in some areas, but I let them flourish in this bed next to my garden shed.

My little pomegranate tree is in full bloom now and the pollinators are headed straight for those bright orange  blossoms.

The sulphur butterfly preferred to dine alone so she moved over to another blossom.

In the vegetable garden the bed of multiplying onions is in full bloom now. The plants will go down when they finish blooming, but they'll be back for these are perennial onions.

Over in the tomato section, I have my first tiny, kumquat-sized fruit of the season. It's on one of the 'Mortgage Lifter' plants. You can see that somebody has already taken a bite out of it, but I'm just thrilled to see a tomato in March. I don't think I've ever had one this early before.

Isn't this a pretty little blossom? We're still in the vegetable garden and this bloom is on one of the red potatoes that I planted around the first of this month. It could almost be an ornamental bloom.

For comparison, here is the ornamental variegated potato vine that lives on the north side of my house and blooms for me virtually twelve months of the year.

I had hoped to get out to the countryside to see the meadows of bluebonnets which I understand are just spectacular this year, but I didn't make it this week. At least I still have my little corner of bluebonnets in my wildflower bed.

 The calibrachoa plants that I stuffed into a hanging basket next to my fish pond are beginning to show some color.

My anonymous camellia is still in bloom. In a normal year, it would just about be starting its bloom now, but this year it was fully three weeks early.

The 'Otahal's' salvia is just beginning its bloom cycle.

While the 'Coral Nymph' salvia is well into its blooming season. I really like this salvia. I got my start of it, like I do so many of my plants, from a friend and it has done very well for me.

The Blackfoot daisies are showing more and more of their tiny blossoms.

And nearby, the 'Blue Daze' has also joined the flower parade.

The recently added 'Senorita Rosalita' cleome has a few blooms. I've heard and read such good things about this plant. I'm really looking forward to seeing how it will perform in my garden.

Remember last week when I told you about the Spicebush Swallowtail butterfly that laid eggs on my little spicebush? Well, ta dah! There has been a blessed event! The eggs have hatched. I found seven of these tiny caterpillars on the leaves today. Finding them, I went to check on the Monarch eggs on the milkweed to see if they had hatched as well since they were laid around the same time. The Monarch eggs were still there and I didn't find any caterpillars. Maybe tomorrow...


  1. I always get excited when I see the first caterpillars. It is the first time I have seen potato blooms. They are really cool. Makes me want to grow some potatoes just for those blooms. I overwintered some coral nymph since it is not hardy in my zone. It is beginning to leaf out. Spring is definitely in full swing in your garden.

    1. Yep, it's been spring for several weeks here already, Karin. By next week, it may be summer. Our springs usually pass in the wink of an eye.

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  2. Replies
    1. The blooms are indeed booming in the garden these days, Snap.