As we all know, it was a tough year for gardens in the southwest. Garden bloggers wrote repeatedly about the need to rethink the garden. In that vein, this post is dedicated to noting the plants in my garden that did pretty well this summer, despite the record-breaking heat and drought.
Spineless prickly pear (Opuntia ellisiana),
Lindheimer's muhly (Muhlenbergia lindheimeri)
and silver ponyfoot (Dichondra argentea).
These were watered occasionally late in the summer.
I had originally thought to do a post on the casualties of the drought, complete with teenage moaning and woe-is-me-ing. I have actually spent a good bit of the summer in this mode, despite the fact that I haven’t been a teenager in many years. Many, many years.
But as a mom, I have learned to embrace the power of a positive attitude. I can carry that into the garden, I can. Even though I lost so many plants, so many . . . little . . . plants . . . No, stop.
Onward with positivity.
Meteorologists say this drought could continue for years, so rethinking the garden is not just an idle exercise. Frankly, I wasted quite a bit of money this year on new plants that did not survive. I also wasted quite a lot of well water trying to keep said plants alive.
|Anacacho orchid tree (Bauhinia lunarioides). |
This did receive some supplemental water late
in the summer, but I think it might have survived
I need to be smarter and more disciplined about plant choices. To me, gardening in its highest, most successful form involves choosing plants appropriate for the site and climate. I thought I was doing that, but as Dylan sings, “for the times they are a-changin'.”
P.S. I would really love to see other Texas gardeners’ survivor lists, so that we could compare notes and maybe come up with new plant options. If you have such a list, add your list or post a link in my comments. Thanks!
No supplemental water at all! On the left, purple sage (Leucophyllum frutescens),
and on the right, the indomitable century plant (Agave americana - I think - it was a pass-along plant).
|Autumn sage (Salvia greggii) in the back. In front is a black dalea (Dalea frutescens) - |
a native wildflower. The sages show heat stress, but bounce right back with water.
The dalea just got a little thin.
Newly planted, regularly watered, but showed little sign
of heat stress. This is yellow bells or esperanza
(Tecoma stans). It will get much larger and have showy
yellow blooms - I can't wait!
That's right - Texas lantana
It did receive occasional water
late in the summer.
|This trailing lantana (Lantana motevidensis 'Alba') was transplanted at the beginning of this horrendous summer, and soldiered through.|
(Yes, I watered it - but plenty of things I watered did not survive!)
|Oh yes, my friends, the flame acanthus (Anisacanthus quadrifidus var. wrightii) is a keeper . . .|
The Mexican oregano (Lippia graveolens)
is not blooming now (old picture),
but it did survive all summer
with only roof run-off. The new one planted
out front did not survive.
. . . as is the pavonia (Pavonia
lasiopetala) a.k.a. rock rose.
This was the only plant that
bloomed all summer,
off and on.