Zooming into Flower Power!

Thank heavens for a rainy Saturday to temper hot, dry winds! ‘Tangerine Beauty’ crossvine sent out lusty cheers to any hummingbird or bee winging by. I cheered since maybe it wet down oak pollen that had my nose on the run.
crossvine Central Texas Gardener
Tangerine Beauty crossvine Central Texas Gardener
White potato vine (Solanum jasminoides) celebrates more demurely. This one is anchoring itself to a Texas pistache that died last year. I’m going to train it over its natural trellis.
white potato vine Central Texas Gardener
Native Carolina jessamine vine challenges anyone to pass by without stopping for a whiff of sweet fragrance. Normally, it would be in full gear right now, but early heat took its toll.
native Carolina jessamine vine Central Texas Gardener
For weeks already, a neighbor’s aloe heralds any pollinator looking for a rest stop. She’s had them 20 years in a bed beyond a robust Agave americana.
Aloe flowers pollinators Central Texas Gardener
Bees are also diving into snug apricot-orange cups on silvery-leafed native globe mallow (Sphaeralcea ambigua).
bee in native globe mallow Central Texas Gardener
I didn’t move quite fast enough for a great shot of this bee on spring starflower (Ipheion uniflorum), but they’ll be back on these long-blooming miniature bulbs.
bee spring starflower Central Texas Gardener
Last fall, I planted a few more along the front door sidewalk to join oxalis, a passalong from a neighbor years ago. Bees get their choice: pink or blue!
spring starflower  and oxalis Central Texas Gardener
They’ll soon discover native baby blue eyes (Nemophila menziesii), too, joining up with native golden groundsel (Packera obovata).
Native golden groundsel and baby blue eyes wildflower Central Texas Gardener
Freesia laxa and white oxalis chime in against red leaves emerging from my ‘New Dawn’ climber.
Freesia laxa bulbs and white oxalis Central Texas Gardener
In a garden we taped last week, Chinese ground orchids (Bletilla striata) cluster in hot pink waves under a live oak tree’s dappled sun embrace.
Chinese ground orchids Central Texas Gardener
Many gardeners are asking: what vegetables to plant and when?
First, while soil and night temperatures are cool, use a soil thermometer to avoid premature transplant rot or lack of seed germination.
Soil thermometer for accurate planting times Central Texas Gardener
Jeff Ferris from The Natural Gardener explains why it’s so important to test soil temp before planting in spring and fall.
Soil thermometer fall planting time Jeff Ferris Central Texas Gardener
Next, keep your row cover handy. Summer crops can be damaged with cold nights or snappy surprises.
row cover over crops The Natural Gardener Central Texas Gardener
And check out our Resources for Travis County’s planting times.
heirloom tomatoes Bill Adams Central Texas Gardener
We’ve all been there. We buy a house that comes with a weedy, overgrown lawn. Or, we’ve let shrubs get out of control or we just need to update. Designer Leah Churner from Delta Dawn Sustainable Gardens explains how to restore and renew.
Tom Spencer and Leah Churner Central Texas Gardener
On tour, when Syd Teague moved from Tucson to Austin, she wanted a water thrifty garden. As she shaped her land, it became her outdoor laboratory from succulents to flowering perennials.
dry creek bed swale converge cactus garden berm Syd Teague Central Texas Gardener
Thanks for stopping by! Linda