Nearly Perfect Gingers

This year many of the Gingers decided to bloom  again in the Fall.  Maybe they liked all the rain.  This Hedychium hybred “Pink V” has nearly perfect flowers.

The Hedychium coronarium “White Butterfly Ginger” have also been putting on a spectacular showing and sending their scents throughout the garden.


Tiny Snake

An Earth Snake appeared in the garden again.  This tiny creature is mostly nocturnal and helps out by eating snails and bugs.

The Earth Snake only grows 7 to 10 inches in length and is as skinny as a pencil.  I photographed this little cutie beside a Coleus leaf.

The Hunter and the Hunted

This big wasp has been hanging around the garden.  It is a Cicada Killer Wasp.  As its name implies, it hunts and eats Cicadas.

Within a day, I spotted this Cicada and so far the Killer Wasp did not find it.

This large bug has a face that only its mother could love, but not scary enough to keep from being hunted by the Killer Wasp.

Hurricane Lily Missed the Main Event

Hurricane Harvey is long gone, but the Hurricane Lily has decided to appear.

Hurricane season lasts from June until the end of November. Hopefully, this lily is not a harbinger of bad news.

Fall Color

Happy Fall!  Many are posting photos of colorful leaves.

The leaves here will not change for a long time.

Instead, our Fall color comes from blooming plants that have woke up from their summer “sleep”, when it was just too hot to make a flower.

We don’t have flaming foliage, so these flaming tropicals will have to do.

Click on the photos to enlarge.


Mine, mine, mine!  The Ruby Throated Hummingbirds are making a migration stop in the Automatic Garden.

It has been pandemonium or hummermonium around the feeders.  Some clever little birds decided to guard the feeders and chase the others away.

Dueling Hummers sit opposite each other fiercely defending the food source. The fights have been brutal, including wrestling each other to the ground. The hits are loud and are accompanied  with Hummingbird screams.

I have located 4 feeders in the yard and the Automatic Garden came through the storm rather well with flowers continuing to bloom.

From the perch on the back porch, this Hummer can survey all the feeders.  The bird was so absorbed with keeping an eye on the others, it never noticed me standing 12 inches away.  (This photo was later taken through a window.)

I know the Hummingbirds need to head south, but I am hoping they will stay for awhile.


Seven Buds


After the six days of rain from Hurricane Harvey stopped, I took a survey of my plants and found my Night Blooming Cactus, Epiphylium strictum, had seven buds on it. It has never made more than two flowers a year and only blooms in early summer.

Apparently, it enjoyed the 33 inches of rain we had on our side of town and opened 6 flowers, one for each day of rain.  Others parts of the city had 51 inches and it is estimated that 25 trillion gallons of water fell on the state.

Harvey bopped around, being caught between two high pressure weather systems. It hit Texas twice as a hurricane, refueling with water from the Gulf of Mexico. Then Harvey meandered along the Texas/Louisiana border as a Tropical Storm. The Hurricane spawned 152 tornado warnings with some actually touching down.

Disaster areas were declared in 58 counties. There were 3,400 water rescues, including many in my community.  Over 200,000 homes were damaged. It will take a long time to bring the area back.

And on the seventh day, we finally saw sunshine and the rain stopped for us.

Now we need to turn our attentions to the Islands and Florida. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.