Recently in fruits and veggies Category

I was out working in the garden this afternoon when I was happily driven back inside by RAIN! 

mxredbud05-17-11.jpgI stopped to do my happy rain dance, then I figured I might as well take a moment to finish the blog post I started yesterday. So...

I grew artichokes... again. I didn't manage to eat them... again. I missed that window between "not ready to be harvested" and "you blew it, the ideal picking time is over." I can't remember what was going on-- maybe Earth Week (busy at my son's school) -- but whatever it was, the artichokes declined to postpone their harvest date for me. However, sometimes such vegetable garden tragedies can lead to something good.

In this case, I discovered that artichokes left to flower produce a gigantic lavender bloom worthy of their prehistoric-looking foliage.

GSartichokeflowerb05-17-11.jpgIt's giant, it's purple, it's spectacular, and it's in my garden! The bees love it. They dig deep past the petals to reach the pollen, and their cute little bee butts stick out. I wish I'd caught a picture.

GSmonarchonmistflower05-17-11.jpgA lone male monarch stopped by -- I was glad to be able to offer it nectar beverages, as its wings were not in the best of shape. It looked like the wings had been that way since emerging from the chrysalis. Poor thing, that must make flying long distances a challenge.


Above, the monarch rests on Purple Coneflower, which are the tallest they ever been, not that you can tell from the picture. But I know this to be true -- third year's a charm!

The hummingbirds are busy, busy. They are in full feisty mode, with the males going at each other to lay claim on the feeders, while the females sneak in for a drink.


We hung a new feeder on the patio -- it's so pleasant to sit and relax and have the hummers come hang out with us.


We've had numerous fledglings visiting the feeders. This young male cardinal is rather mottled-looking as it transitions to its bright red colors.

cardinal05-17-11.jpgSee its dark beak? Baby cardinals' beaks start out dark, then become orange as they get a little older.

Our baby owl has fledged, by the way. We knew that Screech Owls fledge soon after they appear at a cavity's entrance, but that didn't stop us from hoping our little cutie would hang around for awhile. Here's the last picture I took of it on the day it fledged.

GSscreechowlbaby05-17-11.jpgFly well, little Screech Owl!

Simply Wonderful


Bandages are off, and I'm venturing out into the garden, hoping to be able to spend a few minutes a day getting the garden back in order while my wrist gets flexible and stronger. I'm happy that to see that my garden is recovering from the rough winter -- even my precious Anacuas are starting to bud again, despite looking brown and pitiful just days ago.

    pomegranatebudsa03-04-11.jpgHere's our Wonderful pomegranate, looking gorgeous with its young multi-colored leaves -- they'll turn full green in due course, and the red will come instead from the gorgeous tropical-looking flowers the tree will produce later this spring. I'm hoping for lots more pomegranates this year -- we planted it bare root last winter and were fortunate enough to have three delicous fruit from the very young tree. This year, the tree is bigger and better established, so I do hope to see lots of gorgeous flowers this year, which might mean lots more fruit!

The Locally Grown Boggy Creek Farm


boggycrka01-05-11.jpgThis week my family and I had the pleasure of visiting a most delightful organic urban farm in East Austin, Boggy Creek Farm. I'd heard many great things about this farm, and let me say that they are all true and then some!

boggycrkb01-05-11.jpgBoggy Creek Farm offers fresh organic produce at their popular on-the-farm market stand twice a week, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9am to 1pm.


boggycrkf01-05-11.jpgboggycrkg01-05-11.jpgIn addition to gorgeous and tasty veggies, fruits, fresh eggs, and other yumminess, they sell locally produced honey, yogurt, goat's milk, and meats, as well as chocolate, sauces, books, and more. They also offer produce grown on other local organic farms, so that you can always choose from the freshest and largest variety of seasonal produce. During the year, Boggy Creek grows more than 100 kinds of vegetables and fruits.


Owners Carol Ann Sayle and Larry Butler bought their farm and its historic 1800s farmhouse in 1991, but they first began farming back in the 1980s. The farmhouse itself is white and quaint, and lots of delicious seasonal recipes are born there. 

Boggy Creek Farm is about 5 acres, though Carol Ann and Larry also have another farm where they grow even more veggies, those that need more space. While some rows of veggies are green and growing, other rows are being prepped for the next planting. Off to one side of the farm is their large compost area, a source of rich organic matter that revitalizes the soil before each planting. 

  boggycrki01-05-11.jpgboggycrkh01-05-11.jpgboggycrkp01-05-11.jpgThough I didn't get to meet Larry, I can tell you that Carol Ann is a gem among Austinites -- her passion for organic farming shines through as she shares stories of her hens and of life on the farm. She was kind enough to give our family a personal tour, including a meet-and-greet with the chickens.


 The Hen House is quite large and has many different sections.

boggycrkl01-05-11.jpgThe chickens are family pets -- all 80 of them. They live the good life, right up through their old age. The oldest hen on the farm, shown below, is a remarkable 17 years old!


There are lots of different chicken breeds at the Boggy Creek chicken haven, and Carol Ann can tell you every one of them, along with names and various tales of their personalities. Breeds include Auracana, Ameraucana, Leghorn, Production Red, Polish, and more.

boggycrkk01-05-11.jpgAll the chickens are beautiful, healthy, and happy, and they have a safe home long after they stop laying eggs.

boggycrkn01-05-11.jpgMany of them roam the farm freely, searching for bugs and worms and whatever else looks tasty. They are given leafy green veggies and other organic goodness straight from the farm (sometimes they even try to sneak some straight from the fields).

boggycrkj01-05-11.jpgTo complete their well-balanced diet, the chickens are fed a locally-milled superior soy-free laying mash.

boggycrkq01-05-11.jpgAnd in the afternoons they get a treat -- chicken scratch, which includes cracked corn, milo, and other grains.

boggycrkr01-05-11.jpgThey love it so much, they're happy to jump in the container and eat it right from the source.

boggycrks01-05-11.jpgOf course, the chickens' incredible diet means that their eggs are equally high in nutrients!

boggycrkt01-05-11.jpgWhile we were there, a few of the Leghorn hens were in the nesting boxes. I hope they didn't mind me taking photos.

  boggycrku01-05-11.jpgboggycrkv01-05-11.jpgThis next one might have minded a little, but I couldn't resist capturing that glare stare.

boggycrkw01-05-11.jpgIn the photo below, you can see one hen gathering an egg and tucking it under her body. It wasn't even her egg, as Leghorns lay white eggs.

boggycrkx01-05-11.jpgWe left Boggy Creek Farm wanting to reignite our plans to have a chicken coop and to become regular Market Day customers. I highly recommend you plan a visit, too. Be warned, though -- produce can sell out fast!


All I Want For Christmas Is Peas


Everyone has had such lovely holiday and winter pictures to share on their garden blogs, so I went out to my garden for some pictures and saw mostly dormant perennials looking less than festive. My husband's work has been stressful and long, too, so we really haven't had a chance to tour the lights, either. Alas. I did bake cookies last night, though!

peasb12-23-10.jpgBut meanwhile, what is growing in my poor neglected garden are veggies. I've been especially looking forward to sugar snap peas this season, and I've been waiting... and waiting... and waiting.

peasa12-23-10.jpgUsually I feast on them right in the garden, having to will myself to save a few for my family. But I'd about given up hope this year -- I seemed to be growing lots of green vines with no pea activity in sight.


But the good news is that finally the pea vines have beautiful white flowers, and I was excited this morning to find four actual peas, as well. I tasted one -- not ready yet. But I am filled with hope!


So this holiday, I wish for peas... AND peace. Whirled or world, may peas be with you.


I wish everyone the happiest of holiday seasons!

Go Orange


Purely by accident, my photos of the day are showing off the warm colors of the season. How perfect as we transition from late summer to fall. I might as well confess that I'm a Longhorn fan, too -- so "Go Orange" has multiple meanings this time around. But red and yellow, count, too. They, after all, combine to make orange. All in the realm of warm!

I've been waiting all year for my Exotic Love Vine to bloom, a plant I... ahem... fell in love with during my trip to Mexico last fall.

lovevine09-09-10.jpgJust before the rains from Hermine arrived this past week, evidence of blooms first appeared on a vine stem, and happily the steady downpours did not hurt the blossoms before I could get a picture. I do hope that soon our wonderful plant will be covered in these vibrant flowers.

The plentiful rains have encouraged other freshly-hydrated plants to bloom, and the garden is filled with new buds all over. The Texas Lantana is bright with color, and the butterflies are flocking back to it. Here's a Gulf Fritillary, blending in so nicely with the orange and yellow flowers.


Our young pomegranate tree has three lovely fruit on it. Though I might wish for more, I'm thrilled that we'd have even three fruit in our first year of having the tree. I can't wait for them to ripen.

pomegranate09-09-10.jpg At the pond, a fiery Flame Skimmer stands out against the green bog-loving plants.

flameskimmer09-09-10.jpg And the Blackfoot Daisies have revived along the garden path. I like the way they provide a nice look against the decomposed granite.

blackfootdaisies09-09-10.jpg It occurs to me that this time last year I was eagerly watching our pumpkins turn from green to orange. Clearly this is not a new theme. But it certainly is a mood-boosting one!

And just to mention it, our new decomposed-granite (and orange-ish!) garden path held up quite well in the heavy rains. No mush! The only area that we'll need to touch up is a portion of the upper pathway, where compaction was at a minimum, and that's our fault for not giving it the equal time that we did to the rest of the garden path. That the overall pathway stood the test of a major flood-causing rain lets me know that we made a good choice on our plan. Still, we'll make the minor repairs to the upper pathway and determine how best to guide waterflow just off to the side a bit, where the garden itself can absorb the excess water.

Go orange!

Humming a Tune in the Garden


I'm so pleased -- the hummingbird feeders have been getting a lot of birdie traffic!

hummera06-29-10.jpg Do you see the pollen on the little hummingbird's beak above? Someone has been visiting flowers! Hurray for our flying, humming pollinators.

I've tried again and again to get a good picture of a hummingbird visiting one of our blooms -- usually they come out blurry because the birds dart off so fast. And then this morning...

hummerc06-29-10.jpg The little lady usually doesn't let me get too close when she's at a bloom -- she is much more tolerant when she's at the feeder. Perhaps she's getting used to me and will let me get more flower shots, given the progress above. She used to visit the Salvias, but when the Standing Cypress started blooming, it became her favorite.

The Cinnamon Sun has produced a lovely bouquet. All the flowers are still above the roofline, though. I'm waiting for the lower buds to open up so I can really study the blooms easily.

cinnsuns06-29-10.jpg We've had a bit of rain with the tropical systems happening in the Gulf of Mexico -- it made for a pleasant relaxed time in the garden. This male Queen butterfly took a long rest on a lantana.

queenmale06-29-10.jpg How do you ID a Queen, and a male from female? Many people often mistake Queens for Monarchs, easy to do because they really are lookalike cousins. Soldiers make it even more confusing, and then there are the mimic Viceroys, too! Take a look at the photo again, this time with labels.

queenmaleID06-29-10.jpg If you'd like more info on IDing the lookalike cousins, click here.

Also resting on the Lantana was this handsome damselfly. I'm needing a nap, just watching these guys. Perhaps the overcast day has something to do with that, too.

damsel06-29-10.jpg We've had another butterfly release from the Caterpillar Hotel! A black swallowtail emerged and took its time resting and drying its wings. I hope it came from the brown chrysalis from awhile back -- I was worried about it taking too long. Now I've got so many chrysalises that I can't tell which came first.

swallowtailb06-29-10.jpg Soon the swallowtail headed over to the butterfly bush for a longer rest. Within a few minutes later, it flew away for its grown-up adventures.

swallowtail06-29-10.jpg I'm eagerly watching for the Giant Swallowtails to emerge. How can they fit in such a tiny shape?

giantchrysalis06-29-10.jpg Good news on the tomato front. Over several days we devoured tons of homegrown Romas in homemade spaghetti sauce, and now the Brandywines are starting to produce.

brandytomato06-29-10.jpg Is that crown an indication of how big the tomato will become? I won't eat these myself -- but I hope they'll turn out so I can give them to friends and neighbors. I'm a cooked-tomato kind of girl.

I'm also a pomegranate kind of girl! Lookee, lookee!


Fun morning in the garden. Had me humming like the hummingbirds. Hoping for more rain, though!

We Have Bird Poop! Caterpillars, That Is


Ohhhhhhhh, happy day. I've been waiting for two years to find Giant Swallowtail caterpillars munching on our Wafer Ash Trees (also known as Hop Trees). These trees were some of the very first plants we chose for our wildlife habitat, and I've been waiting and waiting for the those big, gorgeous butterflies to find them. Time and again over the past two years I searched, getting my hopes up when noting the occasional bird poop on the foliage, only to discover it was REAL bird poop. But look what I found today! Real bird poop caterpillars!


Aren't they beautiful?!!! Yes, and gross, too. I'm completely convinced that these caterpillars have the best camouflage of any creature in the world.


Not so much "camouflage," though -- they really are quite out in the open, saying "Here we are!" But they sure don't look like anything I'd want to eat if I were a bird. We actually found three of them. I hope, I hope... that I'll get to watch them through chrysalis and butterfly stage. FYI, they also like lemon trees, lime trees, and other citrus trees, so if you don't have Wafer Ash, look for them on your citrus trees.

And whoa -- another discovery! We have ripe Roma tomatoes! It's official -- I have bird poop AND I'm a successful tomato gardener!

roma06-12-10.jpgHappy, happy day.

Growing Up


I love the rain. Everything just looks so green afterwards.


 But even without the heavy rainfall this week, which I was so grateful for (by the way Austinites -- you can thank me for the rain on Wednesday because it was my watering day and I got up and watered-- Murphy's Law was in full effect, because the rain showed up that evening... now if you got hail, too, that's not my fault...), this year we are enjoying massive growth of pretty much everything in the garden. I suppose that sounds reasonable, as in the plant world we are in Year 2, at least for some of our plants -- the rest are still young. Following the saying "Sleep, Creep, then Leap" -- it is clear that our plants are enjoying a growth spurt!

gardena06-04-10.jpgI am envisioning a garden of giants before long -- the thought crossed my mind that I might have to trim some of these back at some point. Whoa, that's too much for this girl to think about right now.

But take a look at this Rock Rose, one that I don't even remember planting in that spot. It's massive. Right now I'm just letting it do its thing, but I'm sure that other gardeners are wisely shaking their head, saying that I'm going to be dealing with lots of little Pavonia babies everywhere and soon. (Here's where I'll tell you that one of my other Pavonias already made lots of babies, as I discovered a couple of days ago. And it was a much smaller plant!)

gardenb06-04-10.jpg  On the plus side, I hope that the natural shade that the larger plants in the butterfly garden will provide this summer will help the smaller ones get through the heat and sun. Downside is that right now everything appears to be the same height. Somewhere in the middle of all that is a Texas Kidneywood, as well as a Barbados Cherry, which at some point should provide the height variation the garden needs. They need to be in their Leap Year, too! 

All around the garden, I've got new plants I'm excitedly watching. Exotic Love Vine, an annual vine from Mexico and Central/South America, still hasn't produced any flowers, but I find myself admiring its beautiful leaves everyday. I guess the love effect is already, well, in effect, even without the amazing blooms it hopefully will produce. Maybe they bloom in fall.


exoticlovevineb06-04-10.jpgNow check out this great stem -- hoho, Great Stem.

cinnsunflowerstem06-04-10.jpgNow at 4-foot tall, this Cinnamon Sunflower is already bigger than some of my trees. Still no evidence of blooms. The leaves themselves are the biggest leaves of any plant I have on the entire property. For comparison, I placed a Pomegranate leaf on one of the Sunflower leaves -- I still don't think it does it justice.

cinnsunflowerleaf06-04-10.jpgFor the record, the Cinnamon Sunflower's growth is putting the Giant Sunflower's growth to shame. I haven't taken pictures of the Giant yet, so it better do some catching up!

The Passionflower is blooming like mad. I'm still waiting for the Fritillaries to show up.


But here's a little Phaon Crescent come to visit.


The Purple Coneflowers are doing some strange things this year, but at least they are officially blooming. Some big, some small, some tall, some flat, some wide, some droopy...

purpleconeflower06-04-10.jpgThis odd Coneflower has a striped appearance.

purpleconeflowerb06-04-10.jpgSpeaking of Great Stems (giggle), here's another one. Check out the thorns on this wee tree, a Toothache Tree, or Prickly Ash. The thorns are currently longer than the stem is wide!

toothachetree06-04-10.jpgWe're fortunate to have two species growing -- Zanthoxylum hirsutum (shown) and Zanthoxylum clava-herculis (very much still a sapling). If you haven't heard of these trees, they're fun. Chew on a leaf and your mouth goes numb for a few minutes. Back in the old days, they served to help with toothaches, hence the name. Bonus -- a larval host for the Giant Swallowtail butterfly! I look forward to our trees getting bigger.

Venturing back to the butterfly garden, I paused to admire a strawberry-like annual, the Gomphrena, that I spur of the moment planted a couple of weeks ago. It's a dwarf compared to the older perennials, but I appreciate the red color that was needed in the garden.


And ugh, a decision to make. This rogue not-native Lantana has popped up in the yard near the pond. Now I have to decide whether to pull it. This is why I stick to the native Lantana urticoides/horrida (Texas Lantana--has orange/yellow/red blooms) -- I don't want to contribute to the easily-spread other kind. I know where it came from, too -- my neighbor had one. Had. I notice she pulled it out this year.


Over in the veggie garden, I discovered an abundance of peppers! Garden Salsa peppers, and they are inspiring the Mexican meal we will have tonight. I didn't even see them start out as babies, and here they are.


Meanwhile, their leaves are getting munched by these little culprits -- tiny (but pretty) grasshoppers. The admiration stops there. They are munching on my peppers, my tomatoes, and my Exotic Love Vine. Stop it, grasshoppers!

grasshopper06-04-10.jpgThe tomatoes are certainly growing up. They've outgrown their cages, keep trying to topple over, and so bushy I'm feeling a little concerned. Next time, I'm going for the big collapsible and way over-priced Texas cages.

tomatoes06-04-10.jpgThe runner beans have grown up past the trellis. I'm hoping we'll actually get some beans before the heat of the summer really hits us. I feel we're pushing the season a bit.

beans06-04-10.jpgAnd the perennial Bell Pepper is producing fruit again. I look at this plant in wonder -- it survived last year's terribly hot summer, made it through fall and winter without any attention from me, and here it is, still growing. I didn't know they could do that. Talk about pushing seasons!

bellpepper06-04-10.jpgPlants aren't the only things growing up around here. I'm about to have a teenager in the house (egads). And at 12, he's already 6-feet tall. We're going to do a final "kid" measure tomorrow, the day before he turns 13.

And these fledgling cardinals showed up this morning. Three of them. I love how their feathers are in transition. Mama and papa should be proud! You can tell my blood sugar was dropping at the time -- the camera was shaking! I'd eaten breakfast, but only just. Not enough time to hit the bloodstream, I guess.

cardinalfledglings06-04-10.jpg cardinalfledglingb06-04-10.jpg cardinalfledglingc06-04-10.jpgI'm pleased that birds are finally starting to pay attention to the thistle feeder. I abandoned the thistle socks awhile back due to the damage the eager birds were doing -- I kept having to replace the feeders. But wow, they did love those socks. It's not off the project list -- I just needed a regular feeder to keep around constantly.

thistlefeeder06-04-10.jpgYeah, I see you squirrel. I know what you're up to. Yeah, I know you see me, too. And yes, I saw you on the birdfeeder this morning. I noticed the young squirrel nearby, too, watching you do it. Naughty squirrel.


So the organic garden is growing up. The birds are growing up. The squirrels are growing up. My kids are growing up. And I guess the evidence is there that this gardener is growing up, too. If I haven't already done it, I guess I have to do away with my newbie status officially, my crutch when I don't know what in the world is going on in my garden. But the greenery around means I must have done something right, newbie or not. If in doubt, add compost -- that's my motto! I'm loving it and ready for more.

For a look back at the garden beginnings through its first year, visit this page.

The Wildlife Lover's Moral Dilemma


In this amazing world, to me every creature is fascinating and beautiful in its own way. Nature has a way of showing off the remarkable, and it's like an addictive thrill for me to find and watch nature in action -- the way a tiny jumping spider stalks the much larger ant, the way a bird tilts its head to watch for predators while it eats, the different pitches of the mating sounds of the male toads croaking by the pond. I've been studying nature my whole life, and it never ceases to amaze me.

When nature is left to its own devices, a balance of predator and prey is the expected result, and the natural dynamics of an ecosystem in their own right are fascinating. Even now I feel the shock of climbing a ladder years ago to peer at new baby birds in a nest, only to discover a snake actively swallowing the last baby bird there. But it was nature in action, and while my heart was broken, I used it as an opportunity to teach my young children that the snake has a right to live as much as the little birds, and while we might not like what happened, it's nature. And then we talked about the hinged jaws of a snake, and all was good.

spiderfirefly05-22-10.jpgSo what makes a wildlife lover become executioner, a god deciding who shall live and who shall die? How can one be absolutely dedicated to gardening for wildlife and seeking out the fascination that nature inspires, then cross the line to what feels like heartless murder?

I've already crossed the line to actively killing fire ants in my yard. Anyone who has ever been bitten and stung, especially repeatedly, knows why these invasive insects are such a serious danger and problem. For immediate control, we use the boiling water method, but I also use beneficial nematodes and organic bait to help control these aggressive and painfully fierce armies of ants. Not only am I doing this to discourage a rampant problem from growing worse, but I'm a mother protecting her family from danger. So, easy justification.

I also have crossed the line to removal by hand of spotted cucumber beetles, aphids, stink bugs, grasshoppers, and a few others. But now I face a new foe, and a new dilemma. My tomatoes are in danger... from a most beautiful pest.

This is my first year growing tomatoes -- Romas, Brandywines, and Tomatillos-- and so far so good. The bushes are outgrowing their cages and already need new support.

  tomato05-22-10.jpgThe young Roma tomatoes are plentiful, and the flowers on the Brandywines let me know they aren't far behind. The tomatillos are younger but well on their way.

tomatob05-22-10.jpgBut the other night, a friend came over to share a birthday key lime pie I'd made my husband, and we ventured outside in the dark with flashlight in hand to view my enormous tomato bushes. My friend had been talking about a little green worm he'd found munching on his tomatoes at home, and wouldn't you know when he reached out to my tomatoes in the dark, he found a "squishy" creature on my tomatoes, too!


It was a hornworm -- specifically a tobacco hornworm, designated by the red horn on its end. We brought it back into the house and watched it munch away on the leaf we'd brought back with it (there were actually two -- see the small one there as well?). It became the table centerpiece and primary topic of conversation as we munched on key lime pie and it on its tomato leaf. We watched it munch and poop and munch some more -- yes, now you know how far I'll go to study nature. And we truly admired its beauty --a tobacco hornworm and its counterpart the tomato hornworm are gorgeous as far as caterpillars go, and the large sphinx moths they become are beautiful, too.


 But we also discussed the dilemma I was in. If I let it live and go back to feasting on my tomato plants, its voracious appetite would defoliate my plants in a flash and leave holes in my young tomatoes. But after an evening of studying the little guy, could I just brutally murder this lovely green caterpillar just innocently munching on the leaves its mama left it on? Was this the Last Supper?

      hornworm05-22-10.jpgUltimately I decided not to dwell on the pending demise of this pretty caterpillar. I knew the outcome the moment we'd found it. The fact is, I have an investment in the vegetable garden, and while many plants elsewhere in my yard are chosen for the wildlife that depend on them, my tomatoes are there for my family. Hornworms have a history of being pretty terrible pests, and if I let this one live, more will come to my tomatoes.

I did give it a home for the night and a bit of breakfast (the Last Breakfast, as it were) while I looked for its siblings on my tomato plants. I couldn't find anymore, but I suspect they are just quite adept at blending in. And in the morning daylight, the true beauty of the caterpillar was apparent. Look at how the lines on its body eventually converge to form the horn.

hornwormb05-22-10.jpgWith sadness, this morning the caterpillar will go to the bird feeder tray. I can't bring myself to do the deed, but perhaps a bird will do the job for me.

hornwormf05-22-10.jpgAnd there is the wildlife lover's dilemma. I'm having to send that which I admire to its doom, but maybe I can feel good that a bird will be happy. For what it's worth, little caterpillar, I'm sorry.


Umm, yeah. I just went outside to the tomatoes again and found this monster. They get rather fat and a little more intimidating when they're gigantic and practically bursting with your tomato plants inside them... And talk about the elephant of all caterpillar poop. I'm letting you imagine it rather than sharing a picture, but trust me, HUGE.


I saw this squirrel at the feeder when I put the caterpillars out. Think she'll eat them?


My husband's comment: Maybe the caterpillars will eat the squirrel.



I'm in love with my Wonderful pomegranate. No, really -- the variety is called Wonderful. And it's gorgeous. I planted it bare-root and leafless back in January, and now it's loaded with dark glossy leaves and bright tropical orange-red flowers --mega color. Love love love.



It's just as well that the second pomegranate tree I planted at the same time did not leaf out -- that would have been a lot of pomegranates! It's interesting that I planted that second tree where my Mexican Anacacho Orchid was struggling, and the orchid tree I moved over near the same area as the Wonderful pomegranate. Well, the Mexican anacacho is doing better than ever in its new spot, and the place where it once struggled and the second pomegranate died has now been leveled and is (at least for now) considered the dead zone.

Also wonderful in my yard, this time with the lower-case "w," is my new Yarrow. I want more.


And the Winecups are putting on their spectacular (dare I say, wonderful?) show before the heat gets unbearable.


winecupb05-08-10.jpgThe Winecups always threaten to take over the world before the sun forces them back to a manageable size. Right now they are encroaching on the Texas lantana, and I love the combination of colors.

  winecuplantana05-08-10.jpgIt's just... wonderful!

Meredith O'Reilly happily
gardens for wildlife in
Austin, TX. She enjoys
educating people of all ages
about native flora, fauna,
and healthy environments.

Nature Blog Network


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