Friday, May 8, 2009


Just when the other larkspurs in the garden have finished putting out their final blooms a new crop has started to flower. I noticed a week or so ago that there were some new seedling sprouting among the day lilies and cone flowers. It made me wonder whether we can really extend their season by doing a late seeding. Or is this just an unusual year? Well, it certainly is here. With copper canyon daisy already in flower and the promise of the worst tomato crop ever but the best pomegranate crop, things seem a little topsy turvy.

It is a big week for the cone flowers. Despite having pulled them out by the hundreds this year they are still growing all over the place.

These ones are growing in the pathway behind the pool and are such a pretty clump I can't bring myself to pull them out. My big weakness.

However, this week there was plenty of pulling out. The peas came out, and along the cucumber trellis the sweet peas and the cross vine. I don't think May dreams believed me when I said "after it flowers" which are words I often use. I pulled out the peas and David got the job of the cross vine and the lantana growing at its foot!  This vine had completely covered the greenhouse, which, I have to say made for a much more pleasant interior during the summer. We will be back to melted plastic containers again this year.

I also decided to get rid of all the alyssum. It harbors the harlequin bug and I am tired of squashing them. 

The pomegranates are really growing quickly. The flowering this year has just been beyond all expectations and I was beginning to worry about how many I was going to get. Nature has saved me the job of culling, as many have fallen to the ground. What a relief.

Here's the Meyer lemon doing the same thing. Such a pity as those lemons are the most wonderful of all the lemon varieties. I could never have enough of these fruits. 
Lemon curd,  just like my grandma used to make.


  1. I too think you should try a 2nd seeding of annuals. I still have things popping up. I love larkspur, mine is not blooming yet. It is so pretty with the pink flowers. ~Brooke

  2. hi! i moved to austin last august... i have a small, but lovely deck that i would love to put a few potted plants out on [ flowers ] do you have any suggestions? i get shade and direct sunlight during the day.

    thank you in advance for your help!

    my email is ::


  3. Hi Jenny,

    Your garden is so lovely! So you're having a bad tomatoe season too? Now I don't feel so bad about my tomatoes...all blooms, no least not yet.


  4. Is that a bit of grass I spy?
    Thought you were mowerless.

    Second flowering already. And me just having bought 50 dahlias and glads which still need planting. Your seasons seem to be like a harmonica. Can't explain what I mean by that, actually. Sort of in and out and overlapping.
    Don't mind me:-)
    I am 'patalytic' in verif.

  5. The larkspur with the lilies and coneflowers are beautiful -- so colorful. The larkspur is just beginning to open up here. I love its various shades of white, pink and blue -- above all the blues.

  6. Creative country mum-Too late to put more in now with the temperatures hovering in the 90s every day, but next year I will plant some late seeds so that the season is extended.
    Cheryl- You don't know the half of it. had a tomato about ready to pick and when I went out it was gone. The whole thing picked off the stem. The guilty party was a rock squirrel. They are such pests.
    Jo- Well, what you see is our septic filed out at the back and it did indeed get a mowing this week. Unfortunately winter rye grass is in there and it will just kill everything off so we were cutting it down. That's it now until the fall.
    I'd give anything to see your garden with all the variety of plants you can and do grow. It must be wonderful.
    Sweet bay- I love the blues purples and whites the best too. I pull out most of the pink ones. They really do so well here.

  7. Oh yes, leave the coneflowers! Just too lovely. But you are so right to take out the plants that the insects love to nestle. . .it's time to go as the heat and humidity are upon us. What a lovely garden you have, always! Okay, so when are you going to publish the lemon curd recipe from England?!

  8. Around here, when things are through, they're through. It is just too hot for most all the flowers, even ones listed as summer wildflowers. You're lucky to have such a large variety and long season. My Meyer lemon has also dropped some fruits, but I think the rest will hold. I'm glad I bought this citrus plant!

  9. Oh well, I can always count on having the "worst season ever for tomatoes" every year!!! Your coneflowers look lovely. It hurts to think of you pulling them out. Yum! Lemon curd. I made a lemon curd tart for my daughter's birthday, and it was all eaten in one sitting! We love it!

  10. Great to see the pomegranates you mentioned in your comment on my blog. It seems incredibly exotic to me to be able to grow them in your garden. And lemons too. We did a house exchange once with a family from Los Angeles, and one of the things I was most impressed by in the whole holiday (forget Disneyland) was all the for us exotic fruit just growing away in the garden - avocados, lemons, grapefruit. Wonderful!

  11. Beautiful!
    And I love your strength - pulling out what needs to go! Gimme some of that good garden sense...

    I can look at images of your garden for hours!

  12. You have such a lovely garden. And you get such great perspective in you pictures.
    I envy the coneflowers. The deer love them too much here.

  13. Hi RR.
    Can you have too many coneflowers? I know (from experience) you can have too many agaves, but surely not coneflowers! I cannot wait to have that issue! I just planted some of the yellow variation this year, the blooms are only now just forming. I noticed on your Meyer lemon you have had some blackening and most likely fruit drop. I had this recently with my Satsuma, do you know what causes this? It looks like a bumper year for the citrus though...fingers crossed.

    And mmmm...home-made Lemon curd.

  14. I just got back from a garden nursery, where, among other things, I purchased lantana and coneflower. I haven't had coneflower, and am looking forward to it blooming. You have a lovely old-fashioned style garden.

  15. Sometimes it seems as if we live a hundred miles apart instead of on opposite edges of the same city, Jenny!

    Your garden looks amazing and the pomegranate has me so jealous. Late frosts and hail in NW Austin means the larkspurs are finally budding and the snap peas just making pods. The last iris are opening and only a few daylilies have flowers - most just making buds.

    We had to replant some of the tomatoes and peppers after the hail and now it's already hot - does not look like a good tomato year.

    Thanks for the warning about alyssum harboring the harlequin bugs - if any harlequins appear I'll immediately grill the alyssum!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  16. Linda- I saw this great white coneflower today- native apparently. I did have a white one which I grew from seed but it has died over the winter. Lemon curd recipe when the lemons are ripe.
    Aiyana- After the muggy heat of the last few days and the Mexican smoke think we will lose a few flowers this week.
    MG in RR- I am so disappointed with the tomato plants this year. Last year we had leaf footed bugs and they did their mischief, this year it s the weather.
    Linda- There have to be some advantages to living in zone 8 and 1/2.
    Germi- Pulling out isn't easy I can assure you.
    Linda- Too bad about the deer. I was going to try them out in the wild next year.
    ESP- Fruit drop is natural but disappointing. I would like some different colors of cone flowers. Must look out for the yellow one. Seeds!!
    Brenda- I love the cottage garden look but it is quite a bit of work!
    Annie- It was such a pity about the ice storm and what it did to your plants. It's hard to have to wait another year for them to mend themselves. Then there is the current weather with all that smoke. The plants hate it.