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

Friday, June 8, 2012

This week in the garden - #18

The rain that I wished for earlier in the week has come! Late Wednesday we got our first showers, 0.6 inch. Last night we got another 0.3 inch, and now, today, it has been raining steadily for more than an hour, coming down hard at times. We'll definitely get more than an inch of rain this week, making the garden and the gardener very happy indeed.

This week, we've enjoyed our first cucumbers and okra from the vegetable garden. One day I made some tasty vegetable soup using produce from our garden, including the okra. Yummy! The cucumbers make a nice and cooling side salad all by themselves or mixed with tomatoes and onions and fresh herbs. I can really make a pig of myself on such a salad. It's a very good thing that the calories in it are so few!

Coneflowers say summertime to me. This plant seeded itself in my onion bed - the perennial multiplying onions - and so, of course, I encouraged it to stay. The dried seed heads you see there are from the onions.

 The 'Mystic Spires' salvia has had plenty of "spires" already this season.

Near the spires is a stand of passion vines with their crop of busy Gulf Fritillary caterpillars.

The blue plumbago is in one of the driest beds in my garden, one that doesn't often get supplemental water, but so far that hasn't slowed it down.

The evergreen wisteria continues to produce plenty of its wine-colored blossoms.

And the orange bulbine never quits, no matter what the weather brings.

The flame acanthus, the first blooms of which I showed you last week, is in almost full bloom now and that is drawing the butterflies from far and near, like this Giant Swallowtail.

The tiny orange blossoms spread an irresistible buffet for the butterflies.

The yellow daylilies have been in bloom for many weeks now and continue to send up their flowers each day next to the yellow cestrum and the butterfly weed.

The tickseed that I planted this spring in one of the front yard beds presents a bouquet on each stem.

While in the backyard, the dinner plate-sized blooms of the white 'Texas Star' hibiscus are opening next to the small pond.

 As I was sitting on the bench under the magnolia tree this morning, I looked up to see the Giant Swallowtail butterfly that I had been photographing among the flame acanthus resting on a leaf above my head. I couldn't resist just one more shot!

I hope your garden has gotten the rain that it needed this week, too, and that all your plants are healthy and happy. If they are, then I know you are happy, too.


  1. That hibiscus is gorgeous! I am waiting on my swamp hibiscus to bloom for the first time. We just planted bulbine this spring. I will see if it will survive our winter. I think it is a tender perennial in my zone. I am enjoying its blooms now. Lovely to see all the caterpillars and butterflies in your garden!

    1. The bulbine survived our two very cold winters of 2009-10 and 2010-11, so perhaps it will survive and thrive for you, Karin.