Thursday, June 25, 2009

Blooming xeric plants for Central Texas summers

Given the wailing, moaning and gnashing of teeth over the positively horrendous heat here in the ATX (myself included), I thought I'd try to cheer everyone up by posting some pictures of plants that are blooming their bloomin' heads off, despite 107 degree temperatures and an Exceptional Drought. (Oddly, lantana isn't among them. Boy, when it's too hot for lantana, it's HOT, I guarantee.)

First, in the front yard:
Salvia longespicata x farinacea ('Indigo Spires' sage).

Thymophylla tenuiloba (Dahlberg daisy).

Melampodium leucanthum (Blackfoot daisy).

Coreopsis grandiflora 'Mayfield Giant'.

Pennisetum setaceum 'Rubrum' (Purple fountain grass).

Asclepias curassavica (Orange milkweed, Butterflyweed).

And in the backyard:
Anisacanthus quadrifidus var. wrightii (Flame Acanthus). Can you spot the bee?

Echinacea purpurea (Purple coneflower).

Ruellia. Not native, not sure of the variety.

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), plus a black swallowtail caterpillar. (She laid eggs and they hatched; now the fennel is covered with baby caterpillars (larva to you lepidopterologist types).

Malvaviscus arboreus var. drummondii (Turk's cap). Do you see the hummingbird?

The cosmos are coming up, but no pics yet. Trust me, there's time. Hmm, I think I'll plant zinnias this weekend. Plant flowers? From seeds? In a 107 degree drought? Watch me.


  1. i set out zinnia seeds a couple weeks ago and they are almost 2 inches high now..;) thanks for the reminder that there is some beauty in this sufficating heat!

  2. Looks good! I just recently planted some blackfoot daisies in a pot, and they're doing so well that I think I might try more of them out in the super-sunny front yard, even in this heat!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. That new drip irrigation system is apparently doing its job very well! Everything looks great, Caroline. Funny thing - lantana is blooming in a couple of the borders but the coreopsis here hasn't done a darned thing.

    I've been here for 10 years and should be used to it, but the weather this summer if freaking me out.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  4. It's freaking me out too, Annie. I keep thinking, if it's 107 now, what's it going to be in August? 110? 115? How is anyone going to survive the ACL Fest this year?

  5. I'm glad so many of your plants are doing well in this crazy heat. Mine are blooming like yours -- the coreopsis is, but not the lantana, and the blackfoot daisy and flame acanthus are thriving. Great captures on the wildlife pics! Hope you are staying cool!