It has been a wonderful week where night temperatures dipped below 70° and day time highs barely touched the 90s. But summer isn't done with us yet as warmer temperatures are promised next week.
Cooler night time temperatures return color to the garden, with new blooms opening on the Salvia greggii. It isn't called Autumn sage for no reason. Clouds of pink and white gaura are a magnet for the bees.
Lindheimer senna, Senna lindheimeriana brings splashes of yellow to the landscape and the hanging pods assure us of an annual display. This is one plant the deer never touch so it is a great plant to have outside the walls. It has, however, found its way inside the walls adding a splash of late summer color to a mainly green landscape.
Sometimes I think a plant is about to die because the foliage has yellowed but then rain brings a fresh infusion and cooler nights bring back the green color to the leaves. It is almost the opposite of what happens in the spring when leaves are yellow because of the cold. This always happens on the hollies and columbines.
In the sunken garden flowering blackfoot daisies Melampodium leucanthum, have been growing quietly from seeds of the previous winter. They seem comfortable growing among the pink crystal grass, Melinus nerviglumis. Soon it will be their turn to fill the garden with pink seedheads.
This wouldn't be a Texas garden without the yellow blooms on the zexmenia, Wedelia hispida. Yes, it may like to take over the garden but when one grows in the perfect spot it is so worthwhile. Here paired with artichoke agave, Agave parryi 'truncata'
Did you experience a garden surprise this week? I had three. The first was the bloom of Lycoris radiata.
Then the first flower on my pale pavonia, pale rock rose, Pavonia hastata, a passalong seedling from Diana at Sharing Nature's Garden. Although not a native it will be welcome unless it proves to be invasive. How could Rock Rose not love another member of the mallow family.
And two days ago this monster moth on the mail box. A giant female silk moth, Antheraea polyphemus. What a beauty she is and a first for my garden despite being found in all the states from Canada to Mexico. She has a short life and her only job is to find a mate.
We may never give us the fall color as found in the northern climates but we welcome the explosion of color in our Southern fall.