Can I just say that late summer in Texas can just absolutely suck it.
This is the season where all we hope for is survival for our plants and ourselves. We did actually have a “cold front” blow through for a couple of days- where the morning was in the low 70s and the afternoon only got up to about 93. A legitimate cold front round these parts. And now it’s gone. I just googled “does sweating burn calories.” Nope, it sure doesn’t, so there goes any vestige of a silver lining.
The webworms are back for their second round in all the surrounding pecan trees. There was one on a low enough branch that I could rip the webbing open and was glad to see a red wasp moved in within minutes afterwards to attack the caterpillars. Evil of me? Yes. Super satisfying? Also yes.
I’ve already pulled out one of the cherry tomatoes because it was so covered with spider mites it wasn’t salvageable and I worried about them spreading to the other tomatoes. No surprise there… they did anyway. So far the surviving three are limping along in spite of it.
The garden isn’t ALL hideous and dead- but I’ll give you the real look of a Texas garden here- not the pulled in tight shots of the few things that look okay. So here is a few comparative before and after pictures to illustrate what I’m talking about.
How about a before and after on the lawn?
The grass in the back is ignored. We water the St. Augustine lawn we installed in the front yard, but the back we don’t because we plan on putting in a large brick patio soon, and the less bermuda in the world the better. But oh man does it go from “Alright looking if you don’t get too close” to “don’t fall in the lawn chasms” real quick.
The ground cracks and grass dies in the heat and drought of the summer.
And, perhaps the most devastating to lose:
Into every Texas life a little no rain must fall, I guess. Even in the midst of a central Texas summer, there is hope amongst the ruins…
The world doesn’t all look like this though. I got back a few weeks go from a trip to Canada and Minnesota so I’ll leave on some shots I took on that trip as a reminder to myself to just hang in there.
And on the way back from Manitoba I spent a couple of days in St. Paul, MN with my aunt.
One of my favorite places to go when I’m up there, and that my aunt indulges me in on just about every trip, is the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. And we’re going to talk about this even though it isn’t my favorite piece, but we MUST discuss Spoonbridge and Cherry.
Okay but here is the thing- that picture is NOT one I took on that trip! It doesn’t look like that anymore! The cherry is not bright red now, it’s this weird brown undertoned dark red/plum color! My aunt and I are scandalized! No one has any answers! We must have answers! (I was so scandalized I forgot to take pictures so you’ll have to take my word on it.)
There have been other big changes to the sculpture garden too, not just the color on the cherry. They’ve moved the pieces around, have taken some beloved ones out, added some “meh” new ones, and replaced lots of the lawn with pollinator gardens/wildflowers. And I’m cool with that last part, but they stuck my FAVORITE piece off on the edge, right next to a street, and it really loses some of the effect due to the backdrop now, which is a bummer.
If you have a chance, go see it. Just try to imagine it without the street behind it. At least this way more people can see it from that street, right?
Here in Texas it’ll cool off right around October (sometimes December), so we are all just hunkering down and surviving till then.