Saturday, July 18, 2009

Can anything survive in the heat??

Summer's are always hot in Texas, but this year the heat hit us really early. We reached 100+ degrees in June-usually it's August before it gets that hot. I feel like all I do is water (and watch out for a snake-no, we have not found it yet!).
It is so discouraging for a gardener to try their best to keep flowers going in heat. I decided to walk around and take note of what flowers still looked happy despite the heat. The first thing I noticed was this Ruellia. I watered it only a few hours before I took this picture. This is all the sun it gets, I know it's not thirsty, but look how the heat of the day makes it look. Luckily by evening it recovers.
The Hot Lips Salvia has a few yellow leaves, but is ok-it just stopped blooming. Last year it stopped blooming when the heat of summer hit, and started back with blooms in fall.
I am so worried about my precious little maiden hair fern. This was a pass-along gift from a dear friend. It gets enough water, it's the heat that is making it look like this.
The candy tuff is just about dead. I will miss it in winter and spring, but maybe I will plant more.
For some reason, my coreopsis is looking like this..and it is not blooming. I thought coreopsis liked heat. The cream brulee in front is doing ok though. That one only gets morning sun, but this one doesn't get much more.

This is only one of several blackfoot daisies I have. This one is doing ok. The others not so good. Note: this one is in a container, the others are planted in the ground. Not sure why that would matter though.
Begonias, believe it or not, are one of the best plants I have found to survive the heat we have. I probably need to use them more than I do.
This bed is primarily shade. I try to keep it watered really good, and I think my efforts have paid off. The hostas and coral bells look pretty good as does the artemisia, juniper and turk's cap.
This little geranium is doing great, but it's because it's close to the back door and I baby it. However, if you keep geraniums in the shade and keep them watered during the hot summer months, they will survive and bloom again when fall arrives.
The window boxes have been a little more of a challenge this year. They are very shallow, so I really have to water them quite a bit. Easy watering though.
The wheel-
barrow with coleus and sweet potato vine looks great I think. It is in shade, maybe gets a tiny bit of sun, and I keep it watered although it does not need water every day.
Impatients? Well, I took this picture when they were looking happy. They are a struggle. I have to constantly water them. They are in the shade of the Bradford Pear Tree which is good, but the Bradford is greedy and takes all the moisture for itself leaving nothing for these flowers.
So far, the crepe myrtles have been very pretty this year. They don't seem to require much attention.
The coneflowers have been a slight disappoint-ment. This white swan usually does great, and there is one pretty bloom here, but they are not putting on the show I usually see.
The purple coneflowers were beautiful, but not now. The color looks faded and the foliage looks terrible. I don't water them a lot, but I think it's enough. Not sure if it's the heat or something else.
The profusion zinnias that I fell in love with last year do seem to thrive in hot weather. The plants I put in this year do not seem to be as healthy as last year, but I didn't buy them at the same nursery which I am going to remember next year.
Cosmos are fine. They come and go not noticing the heat or lack of water. Such fun flowers!
After observing many flowers and plants, if I had to choose a winner of who can survive this heat the would be the Rudbeckia. They are the stars of summer in my book.
Mine seem to bloom later for some reason, but once they start, they are beautiful.
I have them all along the side of the house, in the back, and some scattered out in front. They never complain that it is too hot or that they are thirsty.
I have lived in Texas all my life, so I am use to the heat. In fact, when I was younger I yearned for the hot summer time. As I age, summers are somewhat harder to tolerate, and as our climate seems to change, summers tend to bring us a longer time period of these hot days. But, I read a post from Cindy at My Corner of Katy that seemed to say it best, ".. we who garden here in Texas know that summer is the price we pay for being able to garden our way through the winter months." The more I thought about that, I know how very true that statement is. In Texas you can garden your way through most of the year. We have mild winters and early springs. Mary Engelbreit has a great saying, "Bloom where you are planted." I have always loved that quote. A few years ago I found a wonderful little stitchery picture that sums up my feelings about summers in Texas.
It says.. "I Bloom Here."


NellJean said...

I agree about begonias. They are so easily rooted, and thrive on heat. Pentas are another heat lover. Impatiens are deleted from my garden vocabulary. They are such water hogs, fainting on the first hot day.

Lantana, the trailing kind, is my first choice for hot, dry and sunny slopes. My 'Texas' fav shrublets are Esperanza and Pride of Barbados. They die back to the ground here, but so far have returned in warm weather.

Anonymous said...

Looks like you have quite a bit surviving this heatwave Linda. I have to agree the Blackeyed Susans & Coneflowers seem to thrive inspite of the heat of summer. :) My Coreopsis 'jethro tull' is doing the same thing. I cut it back & it will bounce back soon enough. Same thing happened last year.

Meadowview Thymes said...

Hi NellJean! You have some great choices..ones that I forgot about. I had lantana, but it took over so I dug it up. Dumb thing to do I guess. I may be re-thinking that decision next year when it's planting "thyme." :)

Racquel--thanks so much for the advice on coreopsis. They are getting a trim today! Actually, our temps are down a bit, and they don't think we will see 100 this week, only upper 90's. Whoo-hoo!!

tina said...

And your garden is blooming admirably despite the heat. And you too I am sure. Love the shade bed and can't believe how very good those hostas look! They are outstanding! Bummer on not finding the snake. Maybe it moved on. Hang in there, before we know it fall will be here. In the meantime I think your garden looks great.

Meadowview Thymes said...

Thanks Tina. I really try hard keeping things alive. I have been on vacation these past 2 weeks, have to go back on Monday. It will be somewhat harder keeping up with watering now, but I will try! :)

Brenda said...

Yours are still looking better than mine! Even my usually beautiful hostas in the shade have about bit the dust. It seemed like everything was fine, and then just overnight this strong heat hit and they couldn't stand up to it. Despite being watered every day. Sigh...

Meadowview Thymes said...

Yeah, it is frustrating Brenda. When you work so hard to keep things watered, then all your efforts are for nothing as the heat kills them. And of course, you can't even think about buying new plants right now, and that is something I enjoy so much.
Like you said....sigh...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the prayers, hubby is home and healing a bit more each day. Despite the heat, it looks like you still have lots of flowers in bloom. We are having unseasonable cool weather instead, but I'd just as soon have heat. You see, winter is so long and cold that I have to soak in the heat all summer to get through it!

Susie said...

Linda June was really tough on us too! It just about got to the point that I didn't care what happened to my plants. But then I guess the gardener part of me couldn't just let the plants die.

Luckily we have had some rain and things are looking a little better. I hope you get some rain and cooler temps soon.

Cindy, My Corner of Katy said...

Linda, you know that I feel for you! It's been a brutal summer and I'm counting the days till fall (70 days till October 1st!). Re the coneflowers, I'm seeing the same thing on my corner of Katy. I resorted to cutting a lot of them back to the ground. I think the problem is just too much heat for too extended a period.

I did a post last year on my Blackfoot Daisies' unfortunate tendency to go belly up in sudden and dramatic fashion. I was told that they do that if you water them from overhead. I've left them unwatered this summer and they're thriving thus far.

I've been impressed with how well Profusion Zinnias tolerate heat and drought. I seeded the pink and white Cosmos several places, though, and have yet to see more than 1 or 2 sprouts. Bright Lights Cosmos are going strong. The foliage is ratty but they're blooming like crazy!

Thanks for the link love!

Nola @ the Alamo said...

If it's any consolation, mine looks much the same. My new ferns look fried, I am hoping the roots are not dead.
I just cringed when I read about that water moccasin, we had them in the country and they scare me to death, as do rattlers!
What is a bubbler?????

CiNdEe said...

Just wanted to stop by and say hi! Hope you are doing o.k. in the heat. Its hot here and dry and the flowers are alive just not doing much except trying to stay alive!
Any snake sightings?
None here I think they all left for cooler climate(-:
Next week is suppose to be our killer week! 115 is expected to hit on Monday! I wish I had a huge umbrella/air conditioning for my yard(-: