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

Friday, July 12, 2013

This week in the garden - #71

This was the week when I finally had to admit that my old blueberry shrub that had been so productive for more than twenty years was dead and it wasn't coming back. R.I.P, old friend.

I'm sure it was the drought that did it in, even though I tried to keep it watered. The last three years, including this one, have been really tough on the old girl and, in the end, it was just too much.

I drafted my assistant gardener/hubby to remove it for me.

Meantime, I got a big pot, filled it with potting mix, and dug the other blueberry shrub that I had planted in the yard, and plopped it into the pot. It's much smaller and younger than the old shrub, and I hope I'll be able to save it by growing it in the pot. Another blueberry that I have in a pot has been doing well, so that gives me hope. The newly potted shrub has joined all the other plants in my plant hospital under the magnolia tree.


Many of the planting beds in my garden are sorely missing mulch, so this week we got a pickup load of the stuff to begin replenishing the bare beds. Of course, it will take several pickup loads to do all the beds that need to be done, but one has to start somewhere.


Summer is crape myrtle season. (Yes, I know some modernists spell it "crepe," but I'm sticking with the old-fashioned spelling!)

 In addition to the pretty pink one above, I have this one, which I think of as watermelon-colored, in bloom now. I crave a deep purple one and a white one, but I don't know where I would plant them.

 There have been a few more butterflies around the yard this week, including this Gulf Frittilary at the flame acanthus blossoms today.

Along with the butterflies were lots of honeybees and also many of these large carpenter bees. They all love the flame acanthus.

'Senorita Rosalita' cleome has been in pretty much constant bloom since I brought her home from the nursery this spring. That robustly growing vine on the fence behind her is a Dutchman's Pipe vine, awaiting the attentions of the Pipevine Swallowtails.

The firecracker plant by the fountain is offering up lots of these tubular shaped blooms that the hummingbirds love.

Several of the lantanas around the garden are flagging in the heat and drought, but the 'Dallas Red' seems to thrive in it.

Pretty 'Darcy Bussell' rose is in bloom again.

And the old crinums that we know as "Milk and Wine lilies" started blooming this week.

In spite of baking in the sun every day, some plants just keep on going and blooming.


I haven't forgotten about my "point of view" series. I was out of town during the week in June when I normally post those pictures, but I will be showing you the July view. Tomorrow.    


  1. That Gulf Frittilary is so beautiful!

    1. They are beautiful butterflies and usually very common in my garden. Not so much this year so far.

  2. I seem to remember that "watermelon" was the actual name of one of the crape myrtles back in the 80s. Yours is a very pretty color! I enjoy your posts and pictures very much and live nearby in Louisiana in zone 8b.

    1. I believe you are correct and that may be where I got the idea. It does look like the color of a ripe, red watermelon and it is my husband's favorite crape color. In fact, he thinks it's the only "legit" color!