Early Morning With A Hot Week Ahead


Hot colors for a hot weather week ahead:  Cuphea purpurea with Hunnemannia fumariifolia
A walk taken around the garden early in the morning, when temperatures are lowest and the sunlight is not so harsh.
First, the ugly bit:  the west side area that badly needs care and mulch.  It must wait until my new knee is stronger, which coincidentally will be when the weather cools down this autumn:
Now, something a little better.  The uphill half of the front bank:
And the downhill half of the front bank:
Not quite so wide shot of the lowest side:
The camera swings around the corner a bit more to include a clump of flowering Aloe x nobilis:
Also out front, uphill from the oak tree, is another Aloe 'Hercules' and the far end of the west bank area:
Agave marmorata is still flowering at the very top of its stalk.  The lowest flowers are dried up.  The plant itself collapses, its stored sugars and moisture used up to create the towering flower stalk crammed with hundreds of nectar-dripping flowers.  
 Standing on the driveway making a quarter turn left, one sees the other side of the oak tree:
Taking a few steps off the driveway and another quarter turn left, behind the oak is a flat planting area:
 Carpenter Bee was up early.  I'm just starting to see Sonoran Bumble Bees as well.  They are later than last year.
 Take a quarter turn to the right:
Through the gateway, that area provided no decent wide shots.  Close-ups must do:
 Ripening tomatoes and grapes along the path through:
Through another gate.  The patio garden came off best in the early morning lighting.
    Incidentally, the two Metrosideros 'Spring Fire' growing behind the wall in the above photo, planted to eventually screen out the view of the neighbor's roof, are now as nearly tall as the wall.  Perhaps only 18 months away from hiding the roof.  Lots of limey-green new growth on both of them:
But back in the patio garden.  Adding summer annuals, Agapanthus, and Dahlias over the past few years has made the garden look better come summer.

Now through the back gate...
...to the gully's Treacherous Stairs (their now official name):

The lighting in the gully is best in late afternoon with many plants backlit and glowing.  Early morning, not so good for photos.  However, for sitting with an early morning cup of coffee on what promises to be a hot day, it's lovely and cool under the pergola.
There's a good view of the Cuphea purpurea and the Hunnemannia from there.
Hot week ahead here.  Yours, too? 


  1. Your photos almost make me wish to live in your warmer climate (well almost :) ) My favorite shot is the patio view, so gorgeous!

  2. Photos like this tend to belie our shared dislike of summer, HB! It's too long since I've seen your garden in person so I appreciate the virtual stroll. I love the views of the patio garden. Your Buddleia has me wondering where/when mine disappeared, not that it ever was especially happy. I need more mulch too but it'll have to wait now - it's hard enough just to get hours in to tidy things up.

    1. Buddleia??? No Buddleias. Maybe that's the Trachelium (purple flowers)?

      I guess it's not summer I really dislike. It's a too-hot summer.

  3. Hot, hot, hot indeed! Another scorcher for us. Spent the morning doing some woodworking, but retreated inside for a little respite from the heat. Such a beautiful little cuphea. I've tried getting Hunnemania established a few times up here, but have always failed. I like the yellow color and the lacy foliage compared to the more traditional California poppy. Must admit, I'm a little envious you've got it. Looking forward to meeting you in person soon at The Fling!

    1. Hunnemannia here seem to really really like growing in the decomposed granite paths--you might try them in something like that. They are from the highlands of Chihuahuan desert I think so more of a summer bloomer via summer monsoonal moisture than the CA poppy's late winter into spring. A much longer bloom period here than the CA poppies.

      See you at the Fling! :)

  4. What a delight, your garden is amazing. I'm struck by some of the great combos, the last Cuphea & Hunnemannia. Good timing on the knee being back to business!

    1. The right lighting makes it look better. The Hunnemannia picked that location, not me. It did good. :)

      Very happy to be more agile again in the garden--thanks!

  5. Love these wide shots and the close-ups. The Tomatoes growing through the wire fencing...fun. Take care of yourself, and enjoy that beautiful garden!

    1. Thanks! All the work I did to protect tomatoes and grapes and they did what they wanted, not what I wanted. Well, that's part of the fun.

  6. A nice stroll in the morning garden ! Yours is looking splendid. There's not much that's better than an early summer morning in the garden. My Dahlias are currently under shade cloth -they aren't a fan of the heat we've had this month. But you are right, if it weren't for summer annuals like Zinnias things would be looking pretty rough here.

    1. Here where it is not as hot as your area, I've noticed the Dahlias do better with a little shade, too.

      Hooray for summer annuals! And for some shade. :)


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