Sunday, September 19, 2010

My Garden in Flower - Winter 2010 (June to August)

Time to update the record of my garden through the Seasons.  Whilst we don't experience four distinct seasons here, we do have two ... the 'wet' and the 'dry'.  Our 'dry' season usually begins in Autumn and lasts until early Summer ... but this year there has been a slight change in the weather pattern.  Our 'dry' this year has not been as dry as usual.  Over Autumn and Winter this year, my area of north-east Oz received around 300mm of rain.  This is not typical at all ... nor were the number of dreary overcast days!!!  Usually during the 'dry' we have endless clear blue-sky days ... but not this year.

There was also a slight change in the temperature range ... with slightly warmer temps. than usual.  The Winter temps. this year remained mostly around 26 deg C (78F) during the daytime and around 17 deg C (52F) in the night-time ... although there was the occasional below 10 deg C night. Given these variations in weather conditions, it's time to take a look back at what was going on in the garden during Winter ... smack bang in the middle of an atypical 'dry' season.

Most of the large shrubs around the property, like 'Snowflake' and 'Roseflake' Hibiscus rosa-sinensis, the Ixoras, the Mussaendas, the Poincianas and the Plumeria, take a break over Winter, but there are a few large trees that do flower during this time of year.

In early Winter the magnificent Bauhinia variegata 'Alba' begins its' show.  It will bloom right through mid- to late-Winter and there will still be a few flowers in early Spring.
The Spathodea campanulata, or African Tulip Tree, is another great Winter bloomer.  You will spot these tulip-shaped bright orange flowers all over the top of the tree for most of the Winter months.

Yet another of the large trees around the property that flowers during Winter is the beautiful Tabebuia impetiginosa.  This year, probably as a result of the unseasonal rainfall, my Tab and the Tabs next door had two flushes of flowers.  They bloomed from the end of June right through July ... and then the second flush suddenly appeared at the end of August!!  It was so unexpected ... and so lovely to see!
The large Calliandra shrubs display their unusual powderpuff flowers all during our Winter.  Calliandra haematocephala and surinamensis usually begin flowering in late Autumn and will continue producing blooms through to late Winter ... although the Pink Calliandra (Calliandra surinamensis) will bloom on into Spring most years.
A medium-sized shrub that only ever flowers during our Winter here is the fabulous Euphorbia leucocephala ... the Snowflake bush.  Every Winter it puts on a great display of these bright white bracts and tiny little flowers ... and this display lasts pretty much all through Winter.

A much smaller shrub that grows in another of the outdoor garden beds is this dwarf Azalea and it has put on a fantastic display all through the Winter ... the last of the blooms are only now fading away.

My new baby Poinsettias bloomed brilliantly through the Winter months as well ... as a matter of fact, they're both still blooming now in early Spring.  I just can't wait for them to mature and grow much larger.

Another great Winter bloomer is Kalanchoe blossfeldiana.

There are also the plants that flower all year long scattered around the outdoor garden beds ... plants such as Pentas, Russelias and Euphorbia 'Diamond Frost'.

The other Winter blooms can be found either in the Shadehouse/Greenhouse Garden or the Courtyard Garden on potted plants such as:

Azalea ...

Bracteantha bracteata, Scutteliaria suffrutescens, Pelargonium peltatums, Dahlias .... 

Pelargonium 'Passion', Impatiens walleriana, Verbena, Bromeliad and Pansies ...

Violas and Petunias ....

Snapdragons ...

Plectranthus 'Mona Lavender' ...

Calibrachoa ...

Crossandra and Angelonia ...

Salvia splendens ...

and lots more Pansies and Violas.

Of course, the Begonias continued to bloom through Winter ...
as did the Gazanias.

I also had some success with the bulbs I had planted at the beginning of Winter.  It was limited success though ... mostly in part, I'm sure, because of the consistently warmer temperatures we experienced throughout the Winter this year.

So, that was the Winter here in my north-east Australian garden ...  now for a short video that shows some of the flowers blooming out in the courtyard potted plant garden on the very last day of Winter.

To end, I'm adding a link to a post I did last Winter just for comparison.  Take note of the words in the last paragraph, where I talk about the temperature range during a typical Winter.  You will see that this varies significantly to the temperatures we've experienced this Winter.  This one was definitely warmer, more overcast ... with a sprinkling of rain thrown in for good measure!


  1. White Bauhinia. I've never seen that before, how beautiful. You've pushed the envy button again.

  2. Oh my Bernie, What a wonderful world of color your winter is! Nothing to dread there, unlike here in New England. That calliandra reminds me of a mimosa tree I loved as child in east Texas - until one night it fell over onto the house!

  3. Bernie ~ I LOVE your gardens. They inspire me to continue to work on mine. Your plants all look so lush and colorful. I have dwarf white Bauhinia and love it. Have several other things that you grow also, but you grow so much than I do, and have so much more color. I really enjoyed your little garden video and what a treat having that neat butterfly land on flowers for you.

    Happy Gardening


  4. Bernie you are the queen of photographs in blogland. I love viewing them all and am always amazed to see what I call houseplants like the kalanchoe in bloom in the garden. We call the red flowered one Flaming Katy or another name is the Verruca plant as the leaves are great at getting rid of those dreadful things.

  5. Wow! I love your tour guide in the video flitting from flower to flower.

  6. Barry ... I've lost a couple of Pink Bauhinias that were growing down the driveway and the white is the one that has kept on going through years of drought, short periods of torrential rain, all the heat and humidity and it's never even looked like giving up! It's a wonder!

    Cyndy ... hope that Mimosa didn't do too much damage to your old house! Yes Winter is one of the best times during the year for gardening.

    Flowerlady ... thanks for the lovely comment. I'm pleased that you enjoyed the colour in my winter garden ... and that pesky butterfly!

    Rosie ... you're way too kind with your comment, but thanks anyway! Have never heard those names for the red Kalanchoe before ... love it! I know I'll be calling it Verruca from now on!!

    Missy ... yes that prima dona just couldn't keep out of the shot, lol! Obviously a star in the making, that butterfly!

  7. Wonderful gardems Bernie. ou have such a variety of blooms, you are an inspiration to me.

  8. What a riot of colour! I can never get the pansies to bloom in my garden.

  9. Jayne ... thank you so much for your very gracious comment. I don't feel like my gardening efforts are all that inspirational, but thank you!

    Lotusleaf ... Do you grow your pansies from seed? I find that the punnets of pansies I buy from the nursery never seem to grow very well here. I think it's the change in heat and humidity once they arrive at the nursery from down south! The ones that I grow from seed do much better.

  10. Wow! so many beautiful flowers! Thank you for sharing them with us. My favorite is the first white flower. I think it is the Alba. It is just gorgeous!

  11. WOW! Love the gorgeous flowers! We have the purple version of the bauhinia here and also a red rusellia.

    I remember the sweet times years ago when my dad first bought poinsettias. I should really try them again.

  12. Thank you Diana and Aaron.

    Diana ... that white Bauhinia is a favourite of mine, but I do so love white in the garden.

    Aaron ... I have plenty of the red Russelia as well. It grows like weed here and very hard to get rid of ... luckily I don't mind it popping up in the garden! My new baby Poinsettias were bought to replace two that died ... I couldn't go without replacing them!

  13. Hello,
    Wow !!! So many flowers, it's so beautiful.

  14. Ellada ... thank you for visiting. Yes there are lots of terrific flowers in my garden during Winter ... it's one of the best gardening times of the year in my part of the world.

  15. Just amazing! You have made a garden of Eden. I have some of those growing too but not the ones in the courtyard, they are not tough enough for my careless gardening. Your photos are spectacular too.

  16. I appreciate your wonderful comment Diane ... I don't know about 'a garden of Eden' but I am trying my best to turn parts of this dry environment into a lush colourful garden space we can enjoy. The courtyard offers a great protected micro-climate for those more tender plants but there is a bit or work involved in keeping those plants thriving.

  17. Hi Bernie, You have got a fantastic assortment of colours in your garden. I watched the video, your winter bloomers are tops they all look so fresh. Loved the butterfly on the Pentas and a glimpse of it on the Impatients. It is a pleasure to see your garden.

  18. Oh, I enjoyed this post very much. Many plants I am familiar with since we grow many Australian natives in our desert. I have not seen the Snowflake before, but I just love the delicate white flowers. We grow Russelia, but I have never seen a white one before. Just beautiful :-)

  19. Titania ... glad you enjoyed your visit. All your lovely plants have settled in nicely, thank you once again. I'm looking forward to seeing them grow and flourish.

    Noelle ... yes I knew you would recognise so many of the plants I grow here. The Snowflake is a fairly common Euphorbia that grows here and it always makes a fabulous winter display. As for the Russelia, I far prefer the creamy white one ... but I have loads and loads of the red everywhere on my property.

  20. Hi Bernieh. Loved the blog again. Your garden is soooo beautiful, and colourful. My garden at the moment has no colourful plants just the green foliage, until most of that will go now as winter is getting closer. I loved the butterfly, especially when it flew in front of the camera and landed right in front of you. haha. Another dismal day here for us, but scrolling through your wonderful photos and listening yet again, to this wonderful pianist has made me feel as though I'm right there in your garden. Fabulous blog, pics and music. Love Lindalooloo. x

  21. Linda, thanks for your lovely comment. Late Autumn, Winter and early Spring is the best time in my garden and that's when I can have lots of colour. By Summertime the weather and conditions have halted most of these flowering plants in their tracks ... that's when the garden is mostly green! Glad you enjoyed your visit.

  22. Beautiful garden and photos!!!
    Very nice blog.
    Kisses from Croatia.
    Zondra Art

  23. hi berneih enjoyed your pictures and video blog, as always your garden looks lovely, loved seeing the lovely butterfly to, it added to the video,
    love, sandra(sanbaz)

  24. Your garden has so many plants I do not recognize, or recognize but cannot grow here. Your mosaics are wonderful!

  25. Thank you for your comments Zondra, Sandra and EG.

    Glad you enjoyed the colour as much as I am at the moment ... gotta love Springtime!

  26. Dear Bernie - I'm overawed with your blooms, delightfully presented in your mosaics. So much colour and beauty compared to our barren winter architecture. But what strikes me is how much I am drawn to white flowers. Oh and then there are the blues...and the pale pink azaleas...Lovely to see viola and petunia familiars just to confirm that we live on the same planet!

    Laura x

  27. Bernie - what a wonderful tour! The video rocks! I am just trying to wrap my head around the fact that you maintain all those plants (what a big wimp I am!). As always, a treat to stop by! :)

  28. Laura ... I find myself adding more and more white to the garden here. It's fast becoming a must-have in nearly every little corner!

    Shyrlene ... thanks so much. I really the time I spend looking after all the potted plants. The rest of the garden doesn't need any attention really ... they're all the drought hardy shrubs and trees that are fully established and survive on their own. It's the potted plants that gives me something to do!

  29. Excuse me, do you have a guest bedroom in your house I could use for a year? Just teasing, of course, but there are all just....SO pretty!!!!

  30. Missy ... yes we do have a guest bedroom ... so any time you're in Oz, do drop by! Lol ... just not in the Summer ... that's horrid here.

  31. Wow! Those flowers are really gorgeous. I really envy your garden. All that you planted are seems to grow perfectly. I just wished that my garden is like yours someday. I love the African tulip tree. I love its color and it really makes me smile when ever I saw it. I don’t know why.

  32. Rose Silver, thank you for your gracious comments. Believe me, there's not a lot of perfection in my garden ... there are some total failures and there's just so much more I'd love to do! It's always a work in progress ... I'm sure your garden will develop beautifully.

  33. Hi Bernie,

    What a riot of color! Fantastic collages! I love the Violas and Poinsettias. How very special to be able to grow those. We usually only buy them around the Holidays and then they die. :(

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  34. Pretty flowers! Seems your garden was so healthy. Wish I can have a healthy garden too. I'm been looking for interesting topic as this. Looking forward for your next post. Keep posting!


  35. Thanks for the visit :)

    I love all your GORGEOUS photos! the flowers are so pretty - we have a beautiful show of colour here but soon that nasty stuff starts falling from the sky...white fluffy...Brrr. How I would love to be in your garden


  36. Bernie, I am speechless with all these beauties. Wow!

  37. Awesome series of photos, Bernie! Your must have the most beautiful garden in the neighborhood. Your flowers are gorgeous.

  38. What a lovely breathtaking garden, like walking through paradise! Truly inspiring - thank you

  39. Good that you shared this very inspiring I like it so much flowers is on my favorite. Keep posting!



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