I began by pulling out all the plants that had succumbed to the two frosts that had hit our garden during our absence; tomatoes, beans, basil, all the lingering summer annuals. It was at this point I decided to pull out some large clumps of the alyssum and what did I find underneath but various stages of over wintering harlequin bugs.
So that's why the problem continues to plague my garden from year to year. I started pulling out the plants and checking under every plant I was going to keep. Hopefully my problem will not be so bad next year.
One more job to do before I could retreat to the warm house. The Agave desmettiana, located down the side of the house, needed some winter protection before the promised frost. A good covering of dry leaves and a blanket should keep it safe. This agave is only hardy to about 28 degrees and every one in my garden has succumbed to winter if left unprotected. We seem to be the cold spot of Austin.
This is my Christmas cactus, which lives in England. It loves neglect. It had not had any attention since I was there in May. It is the one plant that remains in my mother's flat. She passed away over 2 years ago. How it loves those long fall and winter nights with no light!
When I travel anywhere I am always thinking gardens so my next post will be about plants and gardens we saw during our time away.