The Daily Muse

A Garden Journal -- May 2003

Last Update: May 27

May 4 - evening

Finally, a weekend devoted to deep soul-satisfying gardening! We had friends over last night to celebrate Victor's birthday, and I spent the entire day working in the garden in preparation. Not surprisingly, several friends remarked about how relaxed I looked when they arrived. I was simply relieved to be able to spend some much needed time catching up with what is left of our Austin springtime. Today, I continued working in the garden every spare minute- but I made sure to find some time to just sit back and watch the fireflies drift down our garden paths.

Last night, I was very pleased to see the "conversation room" we created being used for its intended purposes. An architect who was among our visitors watched with me as folks gathered in the room. We laughed like co-conspirators when he said, "Look, it's being used." For a brief moment I experienced the pleasure that an architect must feel when he sees his creation filled with people.

I hope that you experienced a little deep gardening and camaraderie this weekend. In the spirit of our gathering last night, Cheers!

Coreopsis and Echinacea in our "conehead" bed

The conversation room

Our "Santa Rita" Opuntia in bloom

May 12 - evening

After over two months of waiting, we have finally had our first measurable rainfall of the spring! Unpredicted showers (are there any other kind?) moved through the area today leaving us just over one half inch of rain. I don't throw parties for anything under an inch - but, after two months, the garden is certainly showing its appreciation for  this little "amuse bouche" of "God's water." Everything is looking renewed - spring-like even. We Texas gardeners are so easily amused.

May 18 - evening

Our pond with a Colorado Water Lily blooming

I have had a very good weekend working in the garden. I have spent a great deal of time cleaning up the flower beds; dead-heading perennials, weeding, fertilizing, and generally tidying things up. It feels great to be have accomplished many things on my must-do list.

Early this morning, I took some time to just sit and enjoy the garden. A mockingbird joined me to celebrate the wonderful cool air that was still lingering just after sunrise. He was in his full glory - celebrating his domain. I was glad to share the garden with his song. While I was listening to the mockingbird, I saw a pair of western kingbirds. It was the first time I have sighted that species in the garden and was glad to have another yellow-feathered visitor after the winter parade of goldfinches (even if the kingbird in only yellow-bellied.) As I sat there watching the kingbirds and listening to the mockingbird, I felt a great deal of gratitude thinking about the all of the life in the garden - the kind that we planned and worked for, and the kind that just flew in.

The weather today was very hot and dry, much like most of the last few weeks. It feels like it is going to be a brutal summer. I am praying that we will get another summer monsoon, like last year, otherwise things are going to get pretty toasty around here. If you hear strange sounds coming from behind my fence - don't worry, its just me doing my rain chant, I doubt the mockingbird will imitate that.

A nine foot bloom spike on our giant red yucca (Hesperaloe funifera)

May 26 - evening

An intense Memorial Day week-end is wrapping up. I spent most of the past three days out in the garden and accomplished quite a bit. This morning Mother Nature blessed us with nearly one inch of rain - watering all of my new plants and transplants in. What follows is my visual celebration...

Wide view of our composite bed (on the left) looking towards a bulb bed with day lilies and agapanthus. The stone path through this area is hidden by the foliage.

View along the path with echinaceas "Lynn Lowrey" and "White Swan." "Black and Blue" salvia to the right.

View from our hidden Zen garden looking back towards the flower beds and house.

Buddha, hanging out in the very back corner of the garden.

Agave medio-picta in the foreground and Agave webberii in the back.

Tawny daylily close-up.

Manfreda flower spike close-up.


May 27 - morning

A few more pictures...

Wide view from our Zen garden. Cypress allee is at the center.

The conversation room looking well-scrubbed after the rain.

Echinacea "Lynn Lowrey."

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