Last year, Mom gave me a few cuttings of one of Granny W.'s roses of Sharon. I rooted them in water, then potted them up. I think only two survived-- at least I ended up planting two of them.
They looked like such tiny things when they went in the ground, but they're growing quickly! "Shrub althea", as they are sometimes called, are very easy plants, though you might not guess it from their beautiful flowers, which look worthy of a much pickier garden prima donna.
The blooms of these new roses of Sharon are palest pink and very double.
The established purple-with-red-center is doing its thing, too, as is the one with single all-white flowers.
The double purple has yet to bloom, this year, and the double mauve-rose only gave us that one flower, earlier in the season. They probably need more time to adjust-- but that makes it all the more impressive that the tiny ones grown from last-year's cuttings are already flowering!
The crepe myrtles are also in flower. I think the most prolific bloomer in our garden is this watermelon-pink on the corner of the house.
While the other hydrangeas have long since passed peak bloom, the new 'Little Lime' near the front door just recently started. It's still a small shrub, and the flowers are not huge, but they're pretty and fresh-looking. The mid-summer bloom adds interest after some of the other flowering shrubs have finished their show.
Bat-face cuphea. This is one of the plants I've seen attracting the hummingbirds.
Butterflies like it, too. I think this is a pearl crescent butterfly. I don't recall seeing one before, but evidently they're not uncommon. Maybe I just wasn't paying close enough attention!
I've mentioned this plant a few times before. It came to me as "confederate jasmine", but when I looked up confederate jasmine, the photos looked nothing like this mystery plant. Still, I kept it on the chance that it would have similarly nice flowers, at some point.
Well, it finally bloomed, this summer. Unless I'm mistaken (which I doubt), it's Euonymous fortunei, common name "wintercreeper". The name sounds rather pleasantly eerie, but the plant itself... Well, it doesn't seem to be much to write home about. It's evergreen; I guess that's nice... The flowers, however, are tiny and insignificant. As if to underscore the disappointment, there was a fly on the flower when I finally found it (after looking pretty closely to even see it). Some euonymous have interesting red seeds, but because the plant has such a reputation for being invasive, I'm not even sure I'm interested in keeping it anywhere. It will certainly not stay where it is. Too bad!
I think this may be a 'Picasso' canna lily. A little garish, isn't it?
Not sure on the ID for this one... It's a softer, milder red than some of the other fire-engine red ones we have.
The pale pink crinums have begun to bloom this month, and they're doing well, considering that I moved them last year. I've read that crinums don't really like being moved. Oh, they'll be fine-- remember, "no crinum has ever died"-- but they might sulk for a while, because they really prefer to be a little crowded and left in one spot for years at a time. Anyway, these are blooming pretty nicely.
No flowers yet from the new-this-year crinum, but that seems reasonable. If not this year, maybe next year.
Polka-dot plant and asparagus fern.
We have some of the tiniest little baby green anoles, this year. I don't think I've ever seen so many of these little ones, before. They look so fragile-- the head too big for the body...
I really enjoy our various skinks and lizards. They add a lot of life to the garden.
Celosia 'Mega Punk'.
Is it my imagination, or is the foliage starting to darken and "purple up" a bit more? Spiky celosia is a definite success story, this year-- both this variety and the others, though I think this type is my favorite. I'll be saving lots of seed for next season (and to share, if I can find any takers).
Bog sage, with crepe myrtle in the background.
Wasp on bog sage.
Some insect on peacock orchid.
Dewdrops on the "too-red" rose. (Though it no longer seems too red, with some of the other crazy-bright colors now in the same area!)
Cleome and celosia.
Coreopsis 'Mercury Rising'.
It seems like the flowers start out a dark burgundy then gradually fade to the more "frosted" appearance you see in these photos. Some start out more frosted from the very beginning. (Or at least, this is what I've seen in my flowers, this year. Maybe the weather and relative harshness of the sun makes a difference.)
More of the butterfly ginger have begun to flower. It's so easy to grow (in our area, at least), and the sweet perfume is amazing! When the weather's right, it can carry far.
Remember I said a couple posts back that the river oats were loaded down with seed? Here are a couple of photos.
Time for the final subject.
I've taken far too many photos of the Mexican sunflower, but those bright oranges refuse to be ignored. They demand attention. (The bees and butterflies are happy to oblige!)