Sunday, June 12, 2011

TUNING MY EYE TO THE TEXAS LANDSCAPE.

Coming home to Texas after spending three weeks in England's green and pleasant land can be quite a shock. It takes time for the eye to adjust, particularly when the temperatures have been unseasonably warm. Five weeks ago I left my garden to fend for itself. The only visitors were wildlife. A wren managed to rear a family in the potting shed. The only place they could have come in and out was an inch gap under the sliding doors. I would never have known but for all the bird poop on the floor. They had been perching on the drying rack. I found the nest in a plant pot on the shelf. The goldfinches seem annoyed at my presence as they forage the seed heads on blanket flowers, basil and coreopsis, all gone to seed in my absence.
But blankets flowers continue to bloom as though it was still spring. At least there was some color still left to brighten the garden.

I was wondering why all my potted plants had died. I thought to begin with that it must have been the intense heat and drought but the when I set the drip system on manual and it didn't come on I knew there must be a problem. The GFI in the potting shed had tripped. Judging by the condition of many of the plants it must have been off for some time. I am now in the process of removing spent annuals, and cutting back plants in the hope that an infusion of water will bring them back to life. After three mornings of pruning and watering I am feeling a lot better and I see the garden starting to look its old self again. I think my eye is finally tuned to Texas. It is still going to take me a couple of weeks to get it back in shape. The price I have to pay for visiting 28 of England's finest gardens.

11 comments:

  1. Welcome back. I know what you mean. I always feel that way after a visit home to England. It does take a while to get used to the Texas outdoors doesn't it?
    I have several blanket flowers in the front border which have gone to seed. I've left the seed heads on them, but so far, haven't seen any birds dining on them :-(

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  2. Glad you are back! Sorry about all that though. Not something you want to come home to. I finally got some hummingbird shots. Still reeling from that haha. Hope you had a great trip!
    K

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  3. Glad you had a good trip! Sorry the switch for your drip system tripped. I guess the hardy will survive.

    I think blanket flowers have become my favorite...low maintenance...can resist drought...and beautiful.

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  4. Awww what a shame. I've had similar disasters this year with seedlings getting fried in the unseasonably hot and sunny April.

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  5. I hope you post some photos of England - it's place I've always wanted to visit. So sorry to hear about the watering troubles. Nice photo of the blanket flowers.

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  6. We just got back from 2 weeks in France, where the weather was so beautifully cool the entire time. I'm having a seriously difficult time coming back to temps right at 100, and I'm a native Texan! Between the deer, the heat and the drought, I've about given up on gardening this summer, and am dreaming of fall instead.

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  7. Welcome home.
    Sorry you had to come back to such heat and dry conditions. And, sorry about the drip system. Hope not all is lost.

    Knowing you, it'll all be back to normal soon.

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  8. I have never posted here, but I love your garden, at least through pictures! I travel quite a bit and understand the eye adjustment once you've been in a softer climate. Not just the heat but the type of light. It is very dramatic, very white, and very challenging! I had a similar experience in which the drip system went awry and came back to much dying after a month away.

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  9. Wow, that's sucky about the GFI switch.

    And I think some of the problem this year was the unrelenting winds combined with the heat and lack of water.

    Welcome back to the frying pan.

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  10. Just checked your blog today, because it hasn't been updating in my reader, and lo & behold you've been visiting English gardens! That's awful the watering system failed. What a traumatic homecoming. Can't wait to hear more about your trip.

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  11. Welcome back, Jenny. I don't think I could bear to come home from England right now. I just got back from the mountains of North Carolina and am still having trouble adjusting back to Texas' heat and drought.

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