The second surprise came this morning. Rain lilies between the pavers in the vegetable garden. I try so hard to gather the seeds before they fall but never seem to manage to get them all. I think the combination of my watering the plants in this area and a cooling trend got them going.
Similarly, in the front garden I have watered the cactus and succulents without water all summer and it resulted in the flowering of one of my favorite rock garden plants. I know it is some form of purslane but it is not the common one seen in the nurseries. It grows completely flat against the gravel. It isn't hardy but roots very quickly so I manage to save it over the winter.
It rarely opens before mid afternoon. It is very similar to Portulaca pilosa, which I also have, but the leaves are less pointed and the flowers larger.
This morning, as I came out of the potting shed I surprised a road runner. He was in the vegetable garden and was up in the air and flew over the wall. Yes, they fly quite well. We have even had them on the roof.