Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Tumbling over the wall the magnificent crossvine, Bignonia capreolata.

Not content with blooming on one side the vine is growing over the other side too.

On the gate leading from the English garden

and up into the trees.

Last week I saw cardinals were very busy around this corner of the garden. I suspected they were building a nest somewhere but had no idea it was in the vine on the gate. David spotted the nest yesterday, but no longer any activity. We are thinking there was so much coming and going through the gate that they have abandoned it. If so, then it is probably a good job because the cardinals have a poor record in this garden. One year they built a nest in the front garden in the spokes of the umbrella. It wasn't enough that they were distressed when Central Texas Gardener came over to film but the following night a big wind lifted the umbrella and destroyed the nest. Then another year they built in a tree in the entry garden and the rotten old scrub jays came and lifted the young birds out of the nest. I caught sight of one flying off with a nestling in its beak. Rotten old jays.


  1. Wow that crossvine is spectacular! I'm sorry to hear about the troubles your cardinals have had with their nests in your garden. Such a pity :-(

  2. That Crossvine is really putting on some kind of show.

  3. I am so interested in watching spring unfold in your garden and which self-sown plants cycle in and out of bloom. I'm trying to build up a good population of self-sowing plants for my zone 10 SoCalif garden, and your blog has so much great info (like Ratibida!). Your beautiful sunken garden is an amazing showcase for this style of planting. I notice you're not keen on letting verbascum run loose, and here I'm carefully nurturing mine, so I'm taking notes. Oh, and my foxgloves don't look promising this year either!

  4. Beautiful crossvine. It's going strong in my garden too.

    I didn't know jays would carry off other birds. Do they eat them?

  5. That vine looks insane! How fabulous!!

  6. Your crossvine is indeed magnificent, especially tumbling over the wall. What a grand spring we're having this year.

  7. Those crossvines are so amazing - mine is all the way to the top of the oak tree behind it! Love how it spills over the fence onto the gate. Sorry you lost the cardinal nest, but maybe it was for the best. They haven't been so lucky @ our house, either, between workers and dogs.

  8. Your crossvine is so beautiful en masse like that. I'm so thrilled with our blooming crossvine, but it's still just a baby compared to yours.

    I didn't know that about blue jays. I'm glad mine are distracted with my birdfeeder at the moment. I have some sort of small bird nesting in my garden shed, so I can't close it. The little birds hatched and are peeping -- I really need to see if I can sneak a picture!

    Fun seeing you at the Wildflower Center yesterday!