Not only is it now winter time, but of course we're now well into our dry season for the year. So far this month we've had 12 mms (1/2 an inch) , of rain which fell over the very first weekend (which I note happened exactly as it did last year when I wrote my June 2011 GBBD post).
Dry season this year really began back in April, when the rainfall total fell down dramatically from March's total of 556 mms (22 ins), which fell over 20 days; to a total of 16 mms ( less than 1 inch), which fell over 2 days. May's total was slightly higher than April's, with 66 mms (2 1/2 ins) of rain falling over 6 days. But with only 12 mms falling so far this month and no predictions for more over the rest of the month, I think the dry season is now well underway.
Things are still fairly green around the place right now at the beginning of the dry, but in another month or two the effects of our dry season will be very evident with extensive browning off of the grass and the bushland as a lot of the trees drops leaves and the grasses die back.
There's only a few blooms to be seen in the various far-flung corners of the property. Most of the flowering plants right now are close to the house, such as in the front garden beds, around the courtyard and out in the shadehouse. Comparing blooms with last year's June GBBD post, the only real difference this year is less annuals, as I haven't potted up quite as many this year.
Well, let's start searching for the blooms on this mid-June early Winter's day. I'll begin with the courtyard garden ...
I have a real soft spot for these Salvias. These are Salvia 'Dusky Hues' and they just keep on performing beautifully. They're putting on a pretty display once again.
There's only one of my Pelargoniums in bloom at the moment, Pelargonium 'Vogue Scarlet'. The others have had a hard time coming back from the trials and tribulations of the wet season earlier in the year, but I'm slowly getting better at cosseting them through that hard start to the year. I'm sure there will be many more Pellie blooms evident as we get closer to springtime.
So, while I am missing my favourite Pellie blooms, there's still plenty of other flowers to enjoy. Next to the Pelargonium ... starting top right ... there's my dwarf Azalea, Zygocactus or Schlumbergera, Salvia, Pentas, another Zygocactus and, in the middle, my double white Impatiens walleriana.
There's also some lovely Petunias and Pansies out in the courtyard at the moment. This is the best time of year for them here in my north-eastern corner of Oz.
My favourite Petunias out in the courtyard right now are definitely the big frilly doubles. They are terrific blooms.
Another brilliant annual that's starting to put on a good show out there is this unusual Antirrhinum.
The courtyard is not quite as full of colour as it will be as in the coming winter months, but it's looking quite lovely as it is right now.
The hanging pots and baskets of Dragon Wing Begonias and Impatiens walleriana are providing lots of colour in amongst all that green foliage at the moment. I really love all the reds and pinks in amongst that varying shades of green.
There's loads of blooms on one of the two very, very tall Cadaghi Gums growing down beside the hill driveway next to the house. Because the flowers tend to be located at the top of the tree, it's difficult to get close-up shots.
Next to the newly re-constructed pergola down beside the hill driveway, the Euphorbia leucocephala or Snowflake Bush, and the Hibiscus schizopetalus are blooming.
There are just a few blooms out in the driveway garden beds and the front tiered garden beds. Starting at top left and going clockwise, there's Galphimia glauca, Russelia, Gerberas, Malvaviscus arboreus, Calliandras, the very last Plumeria blooms and the unusual flower heads of the Justicia brandegeeana and Pachystachys lutea.
Finally, I'm seeing flowers on the variegated Ixora out in the front tiered garden beds. They've been a long time coming.
I'm also seeing more blooms appearing on my Callistemon 'Pink Champagne'. This young shrub seems to throw out new blooms every few weeks, which is not at all what I was expecting. However, ever since it showed off its very first beautiful pink bottlebrush flower with the gold tips, it's just kept on blooming sporadically throughout the entire year. I just can't wait until it matures fully and is covered in these stunning flowers.
I'm joining Carol for her Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day meme