Sweetness While Sweltering

Since the sun continues to scowl, I’m grumpier than my scalded plants. A viewer who recently traded Nevada for Central Texas described it well: “weirdly humid and hot.” You got that. Since my patio container-grown Abutilon palmeri is out of the line of fire, its fuzzy leaves only catch dramatic morning light against native Turk’s caps.
Abutilon palmeri leaves Central Texas Gardener
It’s also in a container since it’s not reliably cold hardy, so I protect it in winter. I recently pruned back top-heavy stems, so blooms coming soon. For now, here’s a favorite shot from last year.
Abutilon palmeri flower fuzzy leaves Central Texas Gardener
Tucked into a shady front bed, native Velvet-leaf mallow (Allowissadula holosericea) promises magical flowers soon, too. This one is cold hardy for me.
native Velvet-leaf mallow Central Texas Gardener
My ‘Helen von Stein’ lamb’s ears are just about fed up. Here’s a fuzzy wuzzy from cooler days that just hollers for a pat on the head.
Helen von Stein lamb's ears
My ‘John Fanick’ Phlox paniculata popped a few blossoms this week. This photo is from a corner bed on the Drag that I grabbed last year when still working “from the office.” ‘Powis Castle’ artemisia glistens in the harsh light this spot gets (and obviously more water than my garden gets).
Phlox paniculata and artemisia
Esperanza (also called Yellow Bells) are blooming like crazy all over town. My native Tecoma stans is dilly-dallying around, while the hybrids are in full force. No clue which one this is, but when I snapped this photo at a random garden, ‘Orange Jubilee’ was the new kid in the trade. Now there are many.
I can’t resist sharing yet another shot of my Texas star (Hibiscus coccineus) because I thought it would NEVER bloom. So, for now, it gets rock star attention. Note: it’s not native to Texas, despite the name.
Texas Star hibiscus Central Texas Gardener
And although we’ve had 19 consecutive days over 100 degrees and 40 days so far, passion vine’s still reaching for the stars, the nearest tree, or my roof!

Lucinda Hutson’s fiesta garden patio beats the heat with warm colors that still cool you down. Here’s one of our video visits with her.
Lucinda Hutson's purple wall Fiesta patio wall Central Texas Gardener
In Waco, Sheila Graham’s garden keeps hungry pollinators fed in these hot times. Native perennial rudbeckia and blackfoot daisy join self-seeded annual cosmos around her drop-in buffet adorning her cute shed.
Rudbeckia blackfoot daisy cosmos raised bed cute shed Sheila Graham garden Central Texas Gardener
Watch our past visit to Sheila’s charming garden that she modified when diagnosed with lupus.

And check out her blog, “Pita, Prayers, and Perennials,” for recipes, garden tips, and inspiration.

Thank you for stopping by! Linda