In the garden

As our self-isolation continues, I seek and find daily solace in my garden. There is always something happening there.

In the front garden, the Dietes, popularly called "butterfly iris" around here, are beginning to bloom next to the old birdbath.

Can you see a resemblance between the bloom and a butterfly?

The camellia is nearing the end of its bloom cycle but still has a few blossoms.

This Encore azalea is named 'Autumn Lily' but could just as rightly be called 'Spring Lily.'

Hibiscus and dianthus blooming together.

In the backyard, the muscadine grape vines are beginning to green up.

And the loquat tree is loaded with fruit. Know any good recipes using loquats?

Our warm weather recently has brought out the frogs. They serenade us with their nightly chorus. This one is a southern leopard frog.

And this is a little green tree frog trying to make itself invisible against a crinum leaf.

My husband recently weeded the bottle tree bed for me, but when it came to this particular "weed," he hesitated. He thought it was pretty and so he left it. It is actually a native wildflower called Texas groundsel that had seeded itself in the bed. I have a pretty much laissez-faire policy toward wildflowers that make themselves at home in my planting beds. I tend to leave them there.

This is another wildflower that seeded itself in one of my beds last year and now it has come back again. It is called Philadelphia fleabane.

The Tufted Titmice are my constant companions when I'm in the garden. They sing to me all day long.

This one stopped by my little fountain to get a drink.

The cleaned out and reconfigured bottle tree bed still needs a lot of work. Bottle trees are a traditional southern garden decoration with origins, like so many southern cultural traditions, in Africa. The bottles can be any color or a mix of colors but the traditional color is blue. In folklore, the bottle tree was said to protect the home from"haints" or evil spirits.

The 'Belinda's Dream' rose is just about to be full of blooms.

This bud is almost completely open.

In the little backyard fish pond, the water lilies are beginning to come back. That gives the goldfish a place to hide which makes them happy. They get quite nervous when there's no cover for them.

I cut the oleander back hard in late winter, but it seems to have forgiven me now.

The red columbine sports one little bloom, but there is promise of more to come.

Snapdragons are still looking snappy.

The yellow cestrum is full of blooms.

My daughter picked up this clematis ('Niobe') for me from a local nursery on Sunday. It's still sitting in its black plastic pot on my patio table, but tomorrow for sure I will get it planted.

A pretty little Painted Lady butterfly came calling today.

This 'Apple Blossom' amaryllis will be fully open by tomorrow.

Where do you find solace in these troubled times? Wherever it is, I hope you are keeping safe and well.


  1. Your garden looks very appealing, Dorothy, and I can see why you enjoy it so much. We had a whole entourage of birds at the feeders yesterday and I will need to go out and fill them this morning. We are so fortunate who have a garden. I feel sorry for people cooped up in small apartments without even a balcony. Life must pass slowly and drearily for them.

    1. Indeed. I feel especially bad for those in small apartments with young children. What a challenge this situation is for them.

  2. Not much is blooming for me in upstate New York - not yet - but your post helps to make up for that. I love camillas. I've actually tried to grow one where I live (zone 5b), a hardy variety from a nursery in North Carolina, but it only lived 3 years and never thrived. About all I have are crocus and lenten rose - but that will change in the next few days.

    1. My camellia is fairly new to my garden and I'm hoping that it will live long and prosper here.

  3. Great pictures. I really like the bottle tree. They are very neat. Nature is one of the places that we can reread to in these times of social isolation.

    1. It's there for us. We just have to open our senses to enjoy it.

  4. I take solace in your pics of blooms, though spring will eventually get here. We are under snow this week but next week maybe it will melt away. I wonder do you have any trouble with raccoons getting at your fish pond? My brother in L.A. did .... and I think he either gave up or had to put netting ....

    1. We do have raccoons - and possums and skunks - in the yard at night and in the past I have lost an occasional fish to an unknown predator. It may have been raccoons but I can't say for sure. I haven't had a problem with them though in quite some time.

  5. I find solace in exactly the same place as you do Dorothy, in my garden. The new clematis is a real beauty. And what could be cuter than those tufted titmice!

    1. There's hardly anything cuter or more spirit-lifting than a busy little titmouse!

  6. I can see why you find solace in your garden, it’s lovely.

  7. Always there is solace in the garden. I too allow wildflowers/blooming weeds in my yard. This is a great series of posts and I hope you will keep it up. It brings me much joy.

    1. It's important for each of us to get outside and connect with Nature whenever and in whatever way we can. I feel quite sad for those stuck inside now who have little opportunity to do so.


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