No one likes to write about the bad things that go on in their garden. They really like to share the pretty photos of their garden design and flowers. No one has a perfect garden and no one is exempt from things that go wrong.
Not everything is rosy in my garden. It has been more than 2 months since the horrendous hail storm that battered our garden for more than ten minutes. The garden has made a good recovery and the plentiful rain has helped enormously. We were lucky it was in May because many plants were only just starting to grow. The worst hit of all were the cactus and succulents. This damage will never go away.
But it isn't just a matter of the unsightly. Many of the severely damaged plants are starting to fail. It's as though they have post traumatic stress. This plant bravely put out two new pads which are now hanging loosely. It was such a beauty too.
I have already discarded many agaves and pruned off tens of lower leaves on the large agaves at the front. Most of those are A. weberi, with sturdier leaves, and have taken the pruning well, their leaves spreading down to cover the cuts. Not so the A. desmettiana. I waited before pruning the two in pots at the front gate. But in the end I had to do it. I knew it would create the pineapple effect and it just doesn't look right.
I think they will have to go. One of the reasons I decided to cut back was pups growing underneath. I want to give them a chance to grow in a more upright fashion. The mother plant will remain until the fall. At least I won't have to worry about the pots over the winter.
There are split stems on all the trees and bushes. Some will not recover. This is my beautiful Felicia. She put on a brave show producing new leaves only to find she couldn't support their growth. Then she bloomed again but the flowers were puny and pale. Now she is just bare twigs. I'm not sure whether to cut her back now or wait until the late winter. Either way it will be to the ground as all the stems are in this state.
A similar fate beset my once fabulous sage. I have waited hoping that it would recover but apart from a few new leaves most of the plant is dead.
Just before the storm it looked like this.
The vegetable garden faired pretty badly too. This is the first year that I have had to buy tomatoes. Beaten to the ground I hoped for their recovery but it was too late in the season to set fruit for this year. There will only be two lemons this year as all the flowers were knocked off the trees. Only the little calamondin is making new flowers.
But in all this I have my wonderful gardening friends to thank for some garden gifts. From Cindy at My Corner of Katy came a big box of bluebonnet seeds along with frilled poppy seeds. None of my bluebonnets managed to mature seed because their leaves were pounded to death. It was a huge blooming year too which made me concerned that they were putting their everything into the bloom after the great fall and winter rains. But surely mother nature is smarter than that and doesn't put all her eggs in one basket. Without these seeds from Cindy there may have been a poor bloom next year.
From Rock'N Oaks Garden Club in San Antonio, who had just visited my garden the week before, a generous gift to replace some of my lost plants. I know the new Felicia rose I buy in the fall will have their name on it. As will the replacement of my Princess Diana Texas clematis.
And my Austin garden friends have brought me agave pups, an Eve's Necklace tree and perennials to take the place of bare spots in the garden.
Thank you all. What a wonderful community of gardeners I belong to.
And on a much brighter note the Easter lily cactus bloomed two days after the white ones. Such a pretty color.