Thursday, July 15, 2010


Summer is well and truly underway in every part of the USA and the northern hemisphere. We are all invited to share our garden blooms with gardeners everywhere, as part of Garden Bloggers Bloom Day hosted by Carol, at May Dreams Gardens.

Sometime back in the year 2001, at a Newcomers' garden club meeting, I took some cuttings from the above plant. Photographs showed a beautiful stand of pink blooms among green foliage.

For the last nine years I have tried to rid my garden of this plant. It spreads by underground runners and pops up all over the place. It is rather smelly when you rupture the stems. One runner finally made its way into the corner of the front garden. It is rather a no man's land where I just allow columbines to grow. However, this plant was softening the corner so I let it stay. Lo and behold it has flowered and I remembered why I was so taken with the plant when I saw its photo. I would love an identity if anyone can help me out.

The pink rose, Felicia responded to recent rains by growing a long stem clustered with pink fragrant roses.

Verbena bonariensis along the edge of the dry creek.

In the background a glimpse of the Texas fish hook cactus which bloomed especially for bloom day. Another plant responding to the recent rains.

Along with rain lilies and

Texas sage, Leucophyllum frutescens, our barometer bush.

Gazanias and native cosmos are reliable bloomers in any heat.

As are the rudbeckias. Behind is the snapdragon vine, Maurandella antirrhiniflora.

This delicate vine resembles the snapdragon in looks only. It produces a mass of flowers in late summer, dying back to the ground in winter.

The garden snapdragon, is a very late bloomer this year.

Lurking behind the blanket flowers is the red spider zinnia, Zinnia tenuifolia.

I couldn't be without the zinnias, especially the narrow leaf zinnia, Zinnia linearis, seen here in the orange and white forms.

Gomphrena globosa returns from seed for another year. This plant is a favorite of the hispid cotton rats. They will sit and pick at the seeds for hours on end leaving behind a mass of snowy litter.

This little plant is Texas tough. Ruellia, the Mexican wild petunia took root in a crack along the wall. Cut it back and it will bloom on and on into the fall.


  1. Gorgeous!!! I'm with you on the new fav plant! I like the way you talk about the Ruellia also...I will have to see if it will grow here in south Florida...I like the toughness of it. Thanks for showing all your gorgeous beauties!

  2. What a lovely array of blooms. The white rain lilies are so delicate and sweet. Wish I could help you out on that mystery plant, but I have no idea what it is, even though it looks familar.

    Have a grand day!

  3. I absolutely love your garden and it's on my favorites list on my newly started garden blog.
    Your mystery plant is Clerodendrum bungei aka 'Bridal Bouquet' or 'Rose Glory Bower'. Some sources say it is native to China and northern India. It is my top Jekyll/Hyde garden plant. I WISH I would have kept it in a pot. Once unleashed it aggressively spreads up to 10 feet from the mother plant in one season. However, it blooms in deep shape and is a profound nectar source for butterflies. But so are lots of non-aggresive sunlovers.
    Quick question: which zinnias have the least problems with mildew? Here in Houston, zinnias have a hard time with the summer humidity.
    David (Tropical Texana)

    1. Thanks so much for identifying the mystery plant. I have been searching ever since July when I planted it in my garden. Deer won't eat it, so I am loving its beautiful lushness in my hill country yard.

    2. Thanks so much for identifying the mystery plant. I have been searching ever since July when I planted it in my garden. The deer won't touch it, so I am enjoying its lush greenness in my hill country garden.

  4. Your gardens always look lush, even in July! The cactus flower is such a pretty, and I love the bed of zinnias with the purple Gomphrena globosa.

  5. Hispid cotton rats?? You got me, I'm heading over to google. Your garden looks lovely as ever Jenny!

  6. The clerodendrum is also known as "Cashmere Bouquet" and "Mexican Hydrangea". Lovely to see rain lilies again.

  7. Oooh... I want some snapdragon vine! Too far north, I'm sure, but I adore the color and I'm a huge fan of snapdragons in general.

    Great job photographing the verbena bonariensis, by the way. Any tips for me? I can NEVER seem to get a good photo of the darn things!

  8. It all looks fresh and fabulous. Don't know how you pull that off in July! Coppery Felicia is such a great hybrid musk. And that sweet snapdragon vine is a ringer for asarina.

  9. Julie- It can be a bit of a weed but anything that flowers in summer gets a chance in this garden.
    Teresa O- Thanks for dropping by my garden on bloom day.
    David- Welcome to garden blogging and thank you for your kind words. And thank you for the id. That sounds like my mystery plant. I like the narrow leaf zinnias. You can usually buy them as plants int he spring but I have them that just reseed all over the place. I do save seeds as well. I don't really care for the larger leaf varieties, although I have some of those too. Pinks don't hold their color until the fall so I go with the orange, yellow and white. You can keep cutting them back. Very unfussy.
    Iris- I do love it when cactus flower. Such pretty blooms but for just a short time.
    Conscious gardener- Theya re not the same as the roof rats so many people in Austin have. These are rats that live in the long grasses but they do like vegs. and are crazy about those gomphrena seeds.
    Tufa Girl- Thanks for the ID I am off to look it up.
    Blackswamp girl- I first saw this plant in Pam, Diggings garden. It was climbing up here dovecote, which now graces my garden. I bought a 4" plant and it sat there for ages. Must like this heat. Bonariensis is hard to photograph as it is so tall and lanky. Iw as lucky with this one.
    Denise- I think the garden is starting to hunker down now. These nights in the 80s are very hard on the plants. Little time to recover. I feel the same way! Happy Bloom day.

  10. Your Texas sage is incredibly gorgeous!

  11. I absolutely love your garden and always look forward to your photos of it!

  12. Gorgeous July blooms, Jenny. Seems we all have Cenizos blooming all over town.

  13. I was surprised to still have snapdragons blooming in July, as well. I so connect them to the winter garden that they seem out of place.

    I love the ruffly flower on the Texas fish hook cactus especially the tinge of carmine.

  14. Queer by choice-When I came to Austin to house hunt the Texas sage and Crepe Myrtles were in bloom. It was quite a sight. Love them.
    Greenwords- Thank you for your kind words, Y'all come back now!
    Bonnie- Yes they are. The landscapes are a sea of purple blooms. Hurrah for the rain.
    mss- I think these ones are late becasue they grew from seed and were late getting started. They never do much in my garden over the winter but once spring starts they are in full bloom. The fishook cactus was a new plant last fall. It literally hooked me on my shirt so I just had to take it home. Gosh- I love when the cactus flower.

  15. That Mexican petunia is very nice, love the color, and how can you not like something that grows in barely no space at all?

    Your dry river bed is beautiful. Mine got taken over by prairie plants -- time to weed!

  16. I love zinnias also. Bought a pack of seeds and tossed them out. Now the seeds from those plants are starting to flower. Next year think I will get more than one pack of seeds. Easy plant, lots of color.

  17. I have a mystery plant in my garden. Looking at your pic of the plant that you got at the Newcomers Club makes me think that might be it. It has no bloom yet. Almost thought it was a weed, but no pulling it. Like the foilage and hopefully it will bloom.

    ♥ your blog. I'm in SW night.

  18. J'aime particulièrement cette photo poétique. Merci

  19. Beautiful flowers. I love it when they cooperate and bloom for bloom day! (And I'm glad someone identified that plant for you... that's one of the great benefits of garden blogging...)

  20. So happy to see the Gomphrena (purple) in bloom and good picture of the leaves. I've been looking for this for years. Was a favorite of my Mother and Grandmother (in the Mississippi Delta). I lost all my seeds. Found seeds this year on-line. They are growing with leaves only right now. Looking forward to the blooms and actually having them again in my memory garden plot.