Oh well, now that the weather has cooled to more temperate levels and we've had some rain, lots of plants that struggled during the drought are perking up, and some are really thriving.
The Lycoris plants emerged a couple of weeks ago—about two to three weeks ahead of schedule. I usually associate them with the end of summer, so that was a weird discovery.
The Hydrangeas had to be babied all summer. I forgot to clip off the blooms when they were pink, but it's kind of fun to watch them transform from pink to green to multicolored hues in the fall.
I think this is the state fair-prize year for Black-Eyed Susans. They keep blooming and blooming, and they seem healthier and perkier than in other years.
My experiment with Hyacinth Bean Vines has been less than stellar. They barely grew during the drought even though I watered them several times a week. I thought about fertilizing them, but that didn't make sense in the extreme heat either. But, long story short, they're growing faster now and they're even blooming! I didn't capture the first blooms, but this bud is about to break. Yay!
Purple Coneflowers are fading, but they're still beautiful in a fragile kind of way. I'll leave the cones in place to provide seed for the birds.
Zinnias are blooming and reblooming after deadheading. They'll continue to produce until the first frost. I love their tight buds almost as much as the full blooms.
Swoon...what can I say about these flowers? I grow increasingly enamored with Cosmos as the years pass. They're reliable, drought-tolerant, prolific, and stunning!
Another reliable plant, Salvia attracts pollinators and provides season-long color with frequent deadheading.
The Fuchsias seem to enjoy the heat this summer—of course, frequent waterings are critical to keep them going.
There's something about the petals of the double Hollyhocks that makes me happy. They convey a feminine, joyful, warm mood. The plants don't look as pretty from far away right now, though, because they're quickly fading. Sigh.
And in the spirit of Wordless Wednesday, here's a collage of colorful Coleus—one of my favorite potting plants:
I'm linking in to Bloom Day at Carol's May Dreams Gardens and Foliage Follow-Up at Pam's Digging blogs. Check out all the amazing entries.
And I'm starting to think about my "Lessons Learned" for summer 2012. I hope you'll join me in the meme at the end of the month.