Saturday, November 30, 2013

Metal Planters

So one of the bestest parts about blogging about gardening is meeting all the other garden bloggers we have in the Austin area.  You get all sorts of ideas for your garden, learn what plants do well in the area, and you learn something about the people behind the posts.

One of the local garden bloggers, Bob at Draco Gardens, is a welder by trade.  The man is amazing.  He just recently posted a picture of a spigot flower he made for his sister-in-law based off of "that devil site, Pinterest."  He also is tapped by a lot of the garden bloggers for various projects - Meredith found a crow bar in her garden and asked him to turn it into something decorative so she could put it back in her garden, I've asked him to make me some simple trellises for my vines (pictures to come later after I've actually put them up), and Pam asked him to make some metal planters to hang based on a design she found on the web.  I ended up with some of the smaller ones that he made that Pam didn't want.  After sitting in my yard for almost a year, I finally hung them on the fence and filled with some agave lophantha, a squid agave, and ghost plant.  I also hung a mini hummingbird feeder in each one since it was migration season when I hung the planters.  Since migration is mostly done, I've taken down the mini-feeders, but have left my larger one in case there are any straggler hummingbirds.

Taking a tip from Pam, I hung them in a fashion so as not to drip rust along the fence (i.e. hung on the cross beam instead of on the fence proper).

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Pam's Pink Turk's Cap

I'm going to be honest here. I'm still torn on the Pam's Pink Turk's Cap. I mean, I like it, but at the same time, I don't like it as much as the red Turk's Cap. It never seems to do as well as the red variety, but then, this year the red variety also was decimated by the grasshoppers, and never really bloomed like this one did.  Additionally, the pink flowers 'fall apart' after a few days - I've never noticed this on the red variety, so that's cool - the red ones usually just wilt and fall off the plant.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Bloom Day November 2013

After the freeze we had earlier this week, I'm a bit surprised that some of the plants are still blooming.  The eggplant, tomatoes and most of the cosmos are toast, but everything else seems unfazed (the peppers were covered).  The following are still blooming:
Prairie Fleabane
Blackfoot Daisy
Butterfly Bush
Mexican Mint Marigold
Gregg's Mistflower
Culinary Ginger (was brought in during the freeze)
Mexican Petunia
Shrimp Plant
Unscented Plumeria (was brought in during the freeze)
Henry Duelberg Sage
Autumn Sage
Caldwell Pink Rose

Monday, November 11, 2013


Sorry for the radio silence, dear reader.  I was on vacation in Florida (oh there will be blog posts and pictures, don't you worry), and then when I came back, I jumped right into helping with flood stuff from the Halloween flood.  And today is the first day I've had off since I've come back.  This storm event is the flood of record for Onion Creek watershed and I'm guessing that we'll be talking about it 15 years from now, much the same way we talk about the Memorial Day floods.  I'll probably end up writing more about it as time goes on, but not now...not now.

I still need to update my "rain page," but we got around 4" while on vacation and then another 2" right after returning home.  Sadly, hardly any of this rain has made a dent in the drought because all of it keeps falling in locations where it won't end up behind Mansfield dam. 

The morning was spent getting the garden ready for the winter - there's a soft freeze coming our way on Tuesday/Wednesday so I decided I should dig up plants that I want to try to keep alive over the winter and pull off all of the peppers and eggplants.  I'm leaving the tomatoes on in the hope that we won't really freeze and that I'll be able to let them keep ripening.

The insects, birds and squirrels can also tell that winter is coming.  There's a feeling of a mad frenzy and all of the animals are going about trying to prepare as best they can.  I always watch the animals and think of Robert Burns's poem "To a Mouse"