“Oh come on ESP…a REAL grasshopper”?
“That’s right ‘Hopper’, and I can pull that CAD face too, look! Oh, and if you bully those ants one more time”?
I caught the real thing lurking in the subterranean environment deep inside one of my large agaves. Is he squinting his beady eye at me?
This character jumped onto one of my decomposed granite walkways, this shot highlights his camouflage capabilities:
A master of disguise! I tried and tried to get the red flashing on his legs, his most distinguished feature, but to no avail.
These blue fingers allow no escape, can you guess who they belong to?
“Stay away from the fingers, don’t go into the fingers”.
Interesting how the color gradates through the lily…there, I told you.
Madame Ganna Walska, Nymphaea x, tropical water lily. I thought I would post these pictures as the plant is about to go dormant, it’s growth has slowed considerably, it’s flowers getting smaller. It is a matter of time now before the plant starts to shrink back into my ponds murky depths for the winter. It has served the patch well, albeit if a tad aggressively since the spring.
Staying on a similar color scheme…
Fall Aster is living up to it’s name and dominating the areas I have it planted with its cheerful blooms.
I like the Artemisia and fall aster combination, silver and pale purples always work well for the “Patch Palette”.
…and it houses thousands of garden jewels that resemble a chemistry model. The plant is native to the West Indies and Central America and has common names of Fameflower and Jewels-of-Opar. Knowing that a plant has a common name synonymous with a mythical ancient city full of riches should offer a clue that someone thought very highly of this plant at some point in time. This plant made it through last winters mild conditions, I have my fingers crossed for this year.
If you are a fan of Tarzan, then there is a distinct possibility that you have heard the Jewels-of-Opar name before. Edgar Rice Burroughs mentioned the forgotten city of Opar in 1913 in his second Tarzan book, The Return of Tarzan, and then in 1916, he wrote Tarzan and the Jewels-of-Opar.
Opar is located deep in the jungles of Africa . Portrayed as a lost colony of Atlantis in which incredible riches have been stockpiled down through the ages, the city’s population exhibits sexual dimorphism caused by a combination of excessive inbreeding, cross-breeding with apes, and selective culling of offspring. Consequently, female Oparians are physically perfect, while male Oparians are beast-like brutes.
“MMUUSSTT GET MOORREE OF THIS PLAAANNNTT”
The ruler and high priestess of the city is Queen La, who on her first encounter with Tarzan falls in love with him, and subsequently carries a tikki-torch for him. Tarzan, already committed to Jane, naturally, spurns her advances with the most likely phrase “Me Tarzan, you not Jane”, thus endangering his own life, as the religion of Opar condones human sacrifice…poor Tarzan.
Another purple taking center stage at the moment is the Mexican Bush Sage. The plant has taken a bit of a beating with all the Texas rains we have been having and it is flopping here and there, with a bit of dryer weather it should perk up, I hope.
This plant is full of life right now in the patch, bees, sphinx moths (too elusive to capture as yet) hover flies, anoles – you name it, it is on it. I have a fair amount of this plant, I love it’s naturalistic, free-for-all aesthetic, and who can resist the fuzz?
Another purple just now coming into the limelight, and one of my all-time favorites is Amaranth. This plant exists all over the patch and like the Mexican Bush Sage, it is a creature and insect magnet, and it will remain so for quite some time. Insects swarm this plant. I gather the seeds and distribute every year then allow the plants in the more “appropriate positions” to reach maturity.
as well as a multitude of other insects.
This line of amaranth lining one of the patch’s central paths, sprung up to great heights while we were on our trip to Scotland, it amazes me just how fast this plant grows with a little bit of moisture. This must have grown about three feet in less than the same weeks.
This prostrate rosemary also has it’s fair share of the insect population, the bees are going wild over the blooms. It looks like it is covered in snow right now, it has so many blooms. Behind it is my small satsuma tree completely full with fruit.
This next shot or two I need your help with…I believe we have some new “little people”, smaller than the Naboos, much, much smaller, living in the Patch.
At first I thought these little Pixie Hollow baskets full of metallic rounded pebbles must have something to do with some tribal Naboo ritual or offering to the Gods, but the tribal member in charge of tribal relations, communicated via a series of elaborate mouth clicks that these had nothing to do with their tribe. Although this simple communication between us was brief, it took the best part of an afternoon. I was now even more confused.
I have checked all the adjacent plants but none of them develop seeds like this. Does anyone have any ideas what these are? (Apart from the obvious fact these baskets were manufactured by fairies in Pixie Hollow that is). Can you tell I have watched “A Bugs Life” and “Tinkerbell” 14.25 times (each)?
These were particularly colorful toadstools.
The emerging interlocking blood-stained jaws of this agave always demand respect.
Is that spinach?
wasted no time at all getting stuck into the egg-yolk goodness.
Here is another trying to stare the camera lens out, The wings on these little flies are spectacular in their iridescence. They look like cartoon flies.
“Bzzzzz…Utter nonsense ESP”.
has been blooming steadily throughout the summer with only the minimal amount of supplemental water. A great deep shade plant for a splash of golden color. I have two of these planted under my large Post Oak.
And behind the mistflower, looking like an old-fashioned Victorian Christmas tree, the most enormous ornamental pepper I have ever grown. This is one plant, and it is going to look great when all the individual peppers turn their many colors.
Fish petting area in the patch. My youngest cups the goldfish in his hands, I fear for them knowing that a toddler “squeeze” may be on the horizon for one poor fish, even though I keep drumming it into him to be gentle. He spends hours gazing and throwing things in this pond, you can see toy tractors, pans, cars etc, it looks like a wrecking yard on a clear-water day. The rock on the right has turned into his “pond perch,” he straddles it like Tom Sawyer while he whiles away many an hour in the Patch, tickling and naming the individual fish in his own two-year-old vernacular.
Stay Tuned for:
“Panic in the Patch”
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