Gardening with Texas Native Plants & Wildflowers, part 16.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Hello Everybody!!!
Would you like to join in a discussion about growing and propagating native Texas plants?
Our native plants are beautiful. I am sure many of you have them in your garden. Let us share what we have experienced and learn from each other.
Your Friend;
Josephine.

To reach the previous threads click here; http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/721774/

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

The first picture is our wildflower slope as it is right now.
Here is another angle, the area is 80 feet long by 10 feet wide.
We have right now, lantana, turk's cap, frostweed, goldenrod, zexminia, Texas star hibiscus, maximilian sunflower, four o'clocks and asters. The asters are just beginning to open, I will post a picture when they are in full bloom.

This message was edited Oct 10, 2007 7:24 AM

Lago Vista, TX(Zone 8b)

wow! I am soooo jealous. That' gorgeous and the asters will be spectacular. Mine have just started to open. Crossing my fingers that the deer leave them alone.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Hello Jabee, and thank you. Please post a picture of your asters when they bloom.
I think wildflowers are wonderful.
Josephine.

Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

Someday I'm going to have to see your bounty for myself, Jo. So beautiful.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you LouC maybe one of these days you might be able to come and visit, I would like that.
In the meantime I am sure you have some native plants growing in your garden, could you show us those?
Josephine.

Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

Probably do. I have learned that while trying to start a native garden, more of them are tropical or otherwise. I have a lot more to learn and I thank you for being such a wonderful teacher.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

I bet you have some Lantanas, those are very popular and butterflies love them,

Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

I sure do have lantanas. And passies. And turks cap. And crepe myrtle. And wood fern. And Mexican Hat. And lots of others that I'm not sure of. Mitch will help me ID.

Having a hard time concentrating. Watching a tree crew take down a fruitless mulberry that we planted from a switch 42 years ago. My kids and grandkids had great times climbing in that old tree. Gave us years and years of shade. Always told that 20 years was expected lifespan....not here. This is the second to be taken down in two weeks. One more is going next week. Really good friends. The time has come and we have been starting other trees such as red oak, pecan, crepe myrtle and live oak to take their places.

Hear the phrase all the time.....trash tree.....no such thing. Every tree is to be cherished.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

I agree with you, I hate it when people call any tree a trash tree. In my opinion God doesn't make trash, all plants have their special place and are to be valued.
I am glad your mulberries gave you such good service and enjoyment. I bet you will miss the shade they gave you.
Josephine.

Sugar Land, TX(Zone 9a)

Frostweed, your picture was very timely for me. I have a sloped area in my back yard just like yours in the picture. It's about the exact same size too, 10 feet wide by 73 feet long. I had all but given up on planting anything in it for fear that the rains would wash seeds or plants or trees down the slope. But with your beautiful pictures, I see that there is hope! By the way, how did you plant your wildflowers? Did you go with seeds or plants? Did you have any problems keeping them planted in the soil at that angle?

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Hello Msfeatherflower, first of all let me say that I started that bed 8 years ago.
The area was covered with a mixture of grasses which we mowed regularly. The first fall we started by mowing the grass very short raking it and scattering two or three packets of wildflower seeds which I had purchased.
We got some flowers the following spring, but not many. We mowed it all down when they were finished.
All during that same year we went to empty lots and fields and gathered seeds and plants, like Mexican hat, coreopsis, mexican primrose, and whatever we could find.
We also purchased some plants and planted them in a progressive row so we could keep mowing the grass that wasn't covered by plants.
Eventually after three or four years the whole area was covered and the grass did'nt need mowing anymore. It did pop up here and there in between the plants and I pulled that grass out as needed.
The whole area is now solidly covered with plants and the grass is gone, because the plants shade it out.
We do not have problems with erosion, because we never let the soil be bare and we keep a mulch on if there are any exposed areas.
I cut all the plants down by hand in the winter and fertilize with compost, we shred all our plants and compost them, and that is how we got to this point.
This is how it looks in the winter after cutting.

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

I went out and collected seeds for what I believe is Prairie Agalinis, Agalinis heterophylla on vacant land where I saw it blooming earlier. There's lots of it, if anyone would like seed. The summer rain made them go like mad this year. It's a host for the Common Buckeye in the fall.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

That is neat Linda, I have some agalinis, but have never seen any cats on them, but the reason could be that the plant was half buried by the other vegetation, I have seen Buckeye butterflies around my yard though, so maybe they are using it. We also found a dogface butterfly when the girls came over to visit, the only one I have seen in person, so pretty, I was thrilled.
Josephine.

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

Yes, they may not have found the plants. I have had lots of Monarch and Queen this year, but there's one milkweed plant that they never found even when foliage was scarce....between a big rosemary bush and a large butterfly bush. It came in handy when the cats got hungry and not much foliage was found anywhere else.

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

This was Josephine's beautiful Dogface that was enjoying her Turk's Cap on the slope. She really has a georgeous array of wildflowers in that space.

Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you for the id , Sheila. I have a very large patch of turk's cap myself as well as a number of other butterfly plants. The yellow's are everywhere. Didn't know what the proper name was.

Christi

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Christi, i didn't know either, if you enlarge the picture you will see the design on the upper wing in a brighter yellow with a black dot which is the eye of the dog's face, when they open their wings you can see it clearly.
Very neat.
Josephine.

Desoto, TX(Zone 8a)

They are certainly fascinating when flying en masse.

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

Not all are the Dog Face though, there are so many yellow ones. Here is the shortcut to the one that Josephine helt while we took pictures. The black is what makes the shadow. It just loved her native slope.
http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/p.php?pid=4124532

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you Sheila, I am trying to get a little more control on the those wildflowers, wish me luck, they usually do what they want, and I end up letting them have their way, but this year they were all over each other, and the poor asters are hanging down all the way to the pavement.

I am going to move the Phlox carolina to the slope, because with all the shade in the back yard, it ends up getting mildew, and it makes it less showy, the phlox on the slope had no mildew, so we shall see how that works out.
Josephine.

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

I have some Purple Leatherflower (Clematis pitcheri) seedlings that were planted earlier this year that came up late, from late summer to fall (mostly this fall). I'm so happy! Hopefully they will make it through the winter. I also planted some fresher seed this fall. We'll see what comes up later doing it that way. I'm also enjoying seeing the bright red fruits on the Barbados Cherry this year.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you for letting me know Linda, I will try it too and hope i have better luck this time.
My Barbados Cherry is a tint cutting which did bloom but no fruit since it is so small.
Maybe next year.
Josephine.

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

Since I posted, I checked my fall-planted C. pitcheri again. And guess what, a few are up! And I'm wondering if Barbados Cherry needs other plants to get cross-pollination. I've got 3 that bloomed this year and all 3 produced at least a few berries, even the smaller one in a pot.

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

There's a weekly newspaper I buy from time to time called the Bandera County Courier. Every week it features a plant "In the Wild" by the Bandera County Soil & Water Conservation District. This week, for instance, is Indiangrass. They have whole article telling all about it. I love these articles. This one came too late for the showy time for Indiangrass. Those golden grass blooms that wave in the breeze looking so cool are now gone to seed. But it's still nice to read. Wish more publications featured wild plants. The paper also had a report on fall foliage color. It says there's been too much warm weather this year for the Bigtooth Maple and other trees, at least at the time the article was written. Some color, but not to the normal for this time of year. Well, we got barely above freezing last night. I went out and looked at my Bigtooth Maple. Looks green to me, just a few tinges of color.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

My Maples haven't done well with fall color this year either, some years it is like a gold carpet on the grass, I think it has to cool down gradually, instead of all of a sudden.
This was my pecan last year. I think it is gorgeous.

Rowlett, TX(Zone 8a)

That pecan was gorgeous indeed, Josephine.

Carla

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you Carla, how are your trees doing this year?

Rowlett, TX(Zone 8a)

My Hercules Club and Bur Oak really liked all the rain we had this year. My numerous hollies (I have both Possum Haw and Yaupons) are berrying like crazy. It's too soon to tell how the new stuff has done (3 Viburnums) but I have high hopes for them. As far as any autumn foliage to enjoy, I'll admit that I take it vicariously from my backyard neighbor's Maple tree. :-)

Carla

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

Missing my blooms (sniff, sniff!). Like Blue-Curls, Phacelia congesta. Spring...hurry, hurry! These freezing mornings are getting me down. Going to go look at seed catalogs now.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

I know what you mean Linda, it is downright depressing. Christmas day was sunny, although a little windy, but since we had our celebration on the24th, we decided to go hiking in a new park we had never been to. It is called Ceder Ridge Nature Preserve, and it is run by the Audubon society.
It has many trails and different terrains and soils, part of it is an escarpment just like the Hill Country, I thought of you when we were walking through it.
This is an area where East and West Texas floras meet, so it is very diverse and you can observe both kinds in their natural habitat.
You can also see the now famous Barnett shale, the one they are drilling all over for gas. The layers of rock can be seen where the soil has eroded.
I took my camera but the battery ran out, so I will have to go back and take pictures.
I sure am glad we went. Had great day.
Josephine.

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

Where is that located Josephine?

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Hello Sheila, it is in Cedar Hill, here is a link to the site and map as well as a schedule of events.
http://www.audubondallas.org/cedarridge.html
If you want to go let me know and we might be able to go together.
Josephine.

Longview, TX

Josephine

A couple of years back you gave me some thistle seeds, I think it was the Texas thistle seed. I have someone that wants some of my thistle seeds and I just want to make sure I tell him exactly which one it is.
jameso

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Hello James, it is this one Texas Thistle, Cirsium texanum;
http://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=CITE2
I hope they work well for that person, the butterflies sure love them and the finches too.
Josephine.

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

At least my Bigtooth Maple finally got some fall color after the last cold front. But overall, the yard doesn't have much color these days.

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

That is very pretty Linda. The weather sure has been weird.

Willis, TX(Zone 8b)

This weather has a lot of my plants confused. I have had blooms on my Lady Banksia Rose bush since Christmas. When we had that brief cold snap a week or so ago,...it didn't faze it! My 4 Nerve Daisy has been blooming throughout the fall into winter months,...Mexican Petunias are bloomin' again...as is my Mexican Turk's Cap.

Linda,...my Lindheimer's M. Glory that you gave me in 2006 is sleeping now,...along with 2 other youngsters that I started from seed collected from her. My Lace Cactus you gave me has been going great and now has 2 good sized pups sprouted off the top.
I think I read that you had some of the Purple Leatherflower seedlings goin' good just before the cold weather moved in....did they continue to
prosper? Lee

NE Medina Co., TX(Zone 8a)

Lee, they seem okay so far. I cover them up when it freezes, just in case they can't tolerate it. I've had so many freezes already! When a pretty Long-tailed Skipper showed up this morning, I felt bad. I had nothing for it to nectar on. But I'm glad the plants I gave you did good!

Josephine, Arlington, TX(Zone 8a)

Lee, good to hear from you it has been quite a while. I am glad you are back.
Josephine.

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