The morrow was a bright September morn;
The earth was beautiful as if newborn;
There was a nameless splendor everywhere,
That wild exhilaration in the air...
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
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Today, I celebrate this last month of summer, September. It is one of the best months of the year for the PITV garden and for Floridagirl's spirit. Tropicals are at their prime, and dormant plants have not yet nodded their heads for a winter's nap. Though I have noticed caladiums and gingers blinking their eyes a bit, we still have a few more weeks of color. Too early to think about winter just yet.
Fortunately, we do have a few plants that throw us bones all year long, like the bottlebrush. Is there a more perfect plant for Florida? Ironic, considering it is an Australian native, but it is so well-behaved and resistant to just about anything the Florida climate can throw at it.
Quite frankly, I'm not sure the hummingbirds would hang around all year if it weren't for these residents of my garden.
'Musical Notes' Clerodendrum has been blooming on and off all summer and will continue until that first frost. All of my clerodendrums are looking pretty awesome right now. Ugh. I should've photographed the 'Blue Butterfly.'
And check out how large this Jatropha has grown!!! This has fried to the ground the past three winters, but always quickly returns. I don't know that it has reached this height by September before though. It will surely overtake the lamppost before frost hits! Jatropha stays green in some city landscapes 'round here, but not at PITV.
Isn't Jatropha even more interesting up close? This bloom is irresistible to the butterflies.
Ah, Ruellia! How pretty you combine with yellow allamanda....and just about everything else. What power purple wields in the garden!
But then again, I ask, Ruellia, are you invasive, or are you not? I wonder that as I pull up your babies 'round the garden from time to time. Of course, I will not by any stretch be the lone gardener who will be responsible for spreading you about Central Florida. You are planted absolutely everywhere, mostly intentionally from what I can tell. Then again, who can say what will become invasive? That loropetalum in the background there has been sending up babies in the garden as well. Could loropetalum be invasive????
For now I will just enjoy the lovely lavender trumpets. I claim all innocence, as I didn't have a clue of Ruellia's invasive nature when I bought it many years ago.
Here's a combo I love as well...Dwarf Powderpuff and Thryallis. We dug up four of our Thryallis bushes last winter. They had grown so tall and spindly, and huge branches kept breaking off at the base. These are certainly best if kept trimmed. Of course, I'm not keeping the three remaining shrubs trimmed, so they will probably suffer the same fate.
You may wonder what would possess me to include a photo of this vile creature. But what a glorious week I've had. I have destroyed two huge adults, as well as two mating pairs. That's a count of six, people! Yes, I caught two pairs in the act, and eliminated their possibility of laying eggs in my garden. Woohoo! That's a good feeling!
It's also a beautiful thing to see this giant peace lily in a second bloom flush for the year. The giants don't bloom quite as prolifically as the smaller peace lily...at least not for me. The chewed foliage in the front of the photo is a blood lily that was feasted upon by what else but lubbers.
Gloriosas always bring a smile to my face. They have no flaws in my mind. A perfect symbol of the Florida summer. Wait....this one is an African native. That's okay, though, it is well-behaved. I love every stage of this flower. Do you see the aging flower in the background, transforming itself into magnificent magenta?
I leave you with my favorite scene of summer. This is the view from my Orchid Room. I find it so peaceful and cool to the eyes. This combo is arboricola, a giant bird, a tree fern, and a vine-entangled oak trunk. With poor health earlier this summer, I have not been able to get out there with the loppers and clear the trunk this year. Health is better, but I'm spending hours each week catching up on the weeding. The pothos seems not quite as prolific as years past, but native vines are certainly having a field day. Seriously! Is it so wrong to want to see the beautiful texture of that ancient oak trunk?
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May your month of September be filled with Splendor....
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I have started a Facebook page called Florida Flower Fotos just to share whatever garden thoughts are on my mind each day. And to join in on other garden conversations going on out there. Pop on over and "like" me....please.
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@ www.gardeninpeace.blogspot.com and are copyright protected.
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