Gardening with Texas Native Plants & Wildflowers, part 12.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

This thread is continuation of parts 11-10- 9- 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1

To reach the other theads click on this link http://davesgarden.com/forums/t/600816/

Hello Everyone,

The people on this thread are interested in discussion, seed and plant sharing, and learning in general about native plants and wildflowers.

We are dedicated to plant conservation and love to demomstrate what can be done with the native plants that have been ignored by the nurseries in favor of the exotics. Many of the plants in our yards are native and we are always looking to improve. We are sure there are others out there doing the same thing and loving it as much as we do. Please let us talk about what you are doing and what you have accomplished.

We hope to hear from all you dedicated gardeners. Let us have some fun.

Sincerely, Josephine.


This message was edited Aug 18, 2006 11:18 AM

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

I guess I will start with a picture of a lovely spring scene from the wildflower slope.
It does look refreshing, doesn't it?

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

Yes, wish it were April! But it's August and I may have to let some more plants go. The last few badly wilted Zinnias are going...pink slip time! And I need to get out there later and fence off my pots...somehow. I've got a raccoon family that comes around at night and they destroyed a little Spicebush plant last night...digging in the pot. I felt really bad. I had carefully dug that little volunteer out of the pot one of my larger Spicebush plants came in and kept it alive. Bummer! Anybody want to adopt a wild coon mother with two cute little kids? They're driving me nuts!

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Oh Linda, I am sorry, I have the same kind of trouble with the squirrells.
They are all really cute, aren't they? just wish they werent so curious.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Linda, my wee senna trees haven't put out seeds yet...but will keep my eyes peeled for any while/after they bloom.. :)

Indeed, Josephine....it truly is like finding a hidden treasure.. :) And to think of all of the wonderful things that I have learned and the generous and thoughtful people that I've typed to... :) And hope to meet soon.. :)

Melanie

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)


Yes, Dave's garden is a wonderful place.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Well Guys, I have something to show you that is almost unbeleivable, we went to the church this evening and stopped to see the flower bed that we planted and are taking care of there, and to our astonishment this Datura wrghtii had 58 blooms open all at one time. We had never seen a plant this large, or with this many blooms at one time.
And here it is!!!! All one Plant!!!

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Here is the amazed gardener, with her plant. Wow!!!

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

They look great Josephine!! That is a neat surprise.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Beautiful, Josephine....and that datura is gorgeous too.. ;)

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you Sheila, we had not brought the camera with us to begin with, so we had to go home and the come back to take the pictures, but we just couldn't pass it up.
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Thank you Melanie, you are just too kind, and funny too.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

I just emailed that photo to my mother....it really is so very pretty....I've never seen one with such prolific blooms... :)

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

I have something rather unusual to report. I had a purple datura potted and sitting on the patio table, but something was eating it, the leaves kept dissapearing and there were large droppings on the top of the soil, but no worm was visible anywhere.
It was finally eaten down to the central stem, and then we saw this guy; It was sitting there a long time while appearing to eat.
Do you suppose he was the one who ate it? He sat there for the longest time.
Also I had never seen a bright red one like that. He was beautiful.
What do you guys think, did he? or didn't he.

Austin, TX(Zone 8b)

Josephine, I have no idea if he was guilty of munchin on your purple datura, but wanted to say that the pic at your church is fabulous. You are such a pretty woman and I just think God really rewarded you nicely with all those beautiful blooms.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you very much Merae, I beleive it was God's doing too, since I really haven't given any special treatment to that plant, other than some compost and mulch and trying to keep it from dieyng in this heat by watering twice a week.
I had never seen a datura that large and with so many blooms,
to quote a current phrase; It is awsome!!!!!

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

I have a lot of Neon Skimmers around the house and pond, but have never seen them munching on plants. They do catch insects in mid air and lite to eat them. I wonder if it is a opossum or racoon. Someone had given me a corkscrew willow at one time and it was taking hold quite well where I had it planted. Then overnight it was gone, root and all. I told the lady about it and she said that opossums get the little shoots all the time at her house. Of course the hornworm would be my first guess on Datura, but usually you can spot him if you are looking. Sorry about your plant, maybe it will come up from the roots for you next year. I got one fro Ted at the RU and it bloomed several times, it is the only purple one I have.

http://bugguide.net/node/view/36801

Burleson, TX(Zone 8a)

Josephine, it wasn't this guy who ate your plant, it was a hornworm. I had a whole bunch of them on mine a while back. I'm not sure which variety of sphinx moth they are tho.

After they ate it mine I cut it back, almost down, and to my surprise it has come back bigger and prettier.

My neighbor was just telling me last night that his plants looked the exact same way and I told him to look around for the hornworm(s) and bring them to me, not to kill them.

Burleson, TX(Zone 8a)

Found the pic I took of them. I remember now that I was actually cutting it down because of the little wholes all in it from the little black bugs and that's when I discovered the hornworms. I left them on the remainder of the plant.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Sheila, thank you for link, that was very informative. I had suspected the hornworm all along, but was never able to find it, although i did find his poop in the flower pot. That is why I thought it might be the gragonfly, but I gess they don't eat vegetation. He sure hung in there though, for a long time.
It is starting to come back, but the heat is not helping.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Paige, your datura is looking great in spite of having to be cut back, it makes me feel good to see that you are so loving to all the little creatures.
I have the holes on some of them from those little flea beetles, thay sure can do damage, they turn the leaves into lace, not the kind that you want to keep, though.
Oh well, I guess we just have to learn to live with the ups and downs.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Josephine, have you ever had any Texas Bluebells? I just found out that it is my big sister's favorite native. I'd love to be able to find some for her...According to Lady Bird Johnson's Wildflower Center, they are in full bloom right now.... :)

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Oh Melanie!! I love them, but that is another flower that has never done well for me, I don't know why. They sure are beautiful, but I guess I am not meant to have everything.
It must be God's way of keeping me humble.
Maybe one of our friens around here has them, and can give you some advice.
Sorry I couldn't be of more help.
Josephine.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

That's alright....I reckon if I were meant to grow some....it will happen somehow or another... :) Thanks, Josephine... :)

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

I tried them a couple of times, but they never stayed around long. The only place in the general area I've seen any growing wild is Bulverde...a moist habitat with Texas Bluebells, Buttonbush, Dogbane and more plants I can't remember now. The day I found them I was like a little kid at Christmas! Ran around going from one bloom to the other mumbling like a nut, a lot of ooh's, ah's and OMG's, as I remember!

Boerne new zone 30, TX(Zone 8b)

I thought that dutura's were poison?

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Yes, Daturas are poisonous but only if you eat them or if you get them into your system some other way, but otherwise no problem.
They are members of the Solanaceae family, which includes many plants, some of them we consider their fruits edible, like tomatoes and peppers, for axample, also the potato plant's foliage is poisonous, as well as the potatoes themsevels when they turn green.
In short, there are many plants that are poisonous, you just have to be careful what you eat.
Josephine.

west Houston, TX(Zone 9a)

I have seeds for bluebells and am going to try them down here next summer.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Excellent Debbie, I hope that with your experiment we will be able to learn better ways to cultivate them, they are certainly wothwhile and beautiful.

Boerne new zone 30, TX(Zone 8b)

yea.. I understand... but why didn't it kill the cats?

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Nada, are you saying your cats eat it, or ate it?

west Houston, TX(Zone 9a)

Cats and dogs are not always poisoned by the same substances people are. For instance salmonella. Dogs and cats can eat food left out for several days with no apparent ill effects. If we were to eat meat left out for several days, we would become extremely ill and possibly die as a result.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

lol @ Linda hmm'ing and haww'ing over bluebells...now ya see, I've never seen them in the wild...course, I was only wondering around out in the arid brush country....

Oddly enough, I studied the effects of daturas during one of my anthropology courses in college....simply because some south american tribes actually used them as a natural hallucinagenic....interesting.. !

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Debbie, you are right, so maybe it doesn't affect some animals like it does people.

Boerne new zone 30, TX(Zone 8b)

no I'm sorry... ya'll were talking about worms/catipillers eating the detura. I couldn't figure out why if it was poisonous.. sorry for the confusion.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Oh! you were talking about caterpillars, well the hornworm is adapted to eating from al of the Solanaceae family plants.

This message was edited Aug 20, 2006 1:19 PM

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

Debbie, so THAT'S why dogs can raid garbage cans and not keel over. And YET my cats often turn their nose up at dry catfood left uneaten for most of a day. They are spoiled little kitties!

west Houston, TX(Zone 9a)

yes Linda--even well fed dogs love garbage can raiding. Must be something genetic to the speicies--lol
Cats, I never could understand them, but they definitely have a mind of their own, don't they?

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Yes, my cat will only eat one kind of cat food, but she likes to eat a lot, she weighs 12 pounds and some, and she begs all the time. I think she is addicted.

This message was edited Aug 20, 2006 5:38 PM

west Houston, TX(Zone 9a)

Managed to get some beautyberry shots today--despite being verry busy. Here are some of the branches showing how the berries ripening from the inside towards the outer edges of the shrub.

west Houston, TX(Zone 9a)

Here is the entire shrub--it always looks a bit wilted at 2:00 in the afternoon, but perks back up quickly. This is probably the last shot of it this year showing it is up over the roofline of the house--the weight of the berries will weight it down lower soon.

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