Now that fall is definitely here, I've perked up a bit. The high temps just kept on and on, to the point I just needed a semi-long break from worrying and stressing about my garden and all the shrubs, cacti and and much of the ground cover that succumbed to the overly long, intensely hot summer that we had. The loss of my largest tree to monsoon winds put the finishing touch on the whole depressing period, so I decided to focus on other things for awhile--even giving up on blogging in the interim. Luckily, my hubby took up the slack and did routine garden chores for me. He has never minded the heat at all and can work outside for hours, even in mid-day.
They say that the value of a sabbatical is to revitalize enthusiasm for work, hobby or other pursuit, and though I'm not completely back into my former garden fervor, I think I'm getting there, just by "doing". Perhaps writing a blog post will speed the process. That's my plan, anyway.
When I saw the first fall bud on 'Queen Elizabeth', I was motivated to do the light fall pruning and fertilizing due for all my roses. I have the new mulch ready to spread after cleaning up all last year's stuff. Already I see new growth starting on all the bushes.
A surprise flower appeared on this Huernia, and the color is far better than it was when it bloomed in late June. Even though more colorful, it's not the most striking flower. When a plant has flowers that have a carrion smell (used to attract flies) they should at least have a knockout flower to make up for it!
This little baby had a birthday this month, and it is now four years old. I purchased a group of them at our Cactus and Succulent Society meeting silent auction. The seedlings were two years old when I got them and they were about the size of marbles, all in one container. The person that started them from seed always writes the date they sprout on the container, and that's how I know the exact birthday. It is now about the size of a miniature cupcake. I have about eight of these, all the same age. Six are still in pots, and they are actually larger than the two I planted in my garden, probably because the potted ones get supplemental water now and then. Even with my limited watering, the landscape baby barrels had to make do with rainfall, which has been really scarce this year.