Wildflowers, edibles, and hibiscus-munching tortoise at Teresa Garcia’s backyard


Could 17, 2024

A colourful patch of native Texas wildflowers greeted me in Teresa Garcia’s backyard on the Inside Austin Gardens Tour final weekend. Ka-pow! Like Katie Fowl Farm in my final publish, Teresa’s backyard is massive (one acre) with intensive gardens, and situated in southwest Austin. Let’s begin our tour within the yard.

Blanketflower and horsemint crowd round a giant inexperienced agave — ‘Inexperienced Goblet’ perhaps?

I obtained hung up right here taking photographs of this lovely spring scene.

Blanketflower and horsemint, a local Texas monarda

With just a little hesperaloe thrown in

Bees have been loving all of it.

Nigella going to seed in its fairly method

Large coneflowers reaching for the sky. I like their glaucous leaves.

On a gravel patio off the again of the home, a big stock-tank pond is filled with water-loving crops. Elevated pots preserve their crowns above water whereas their roots benefit from the soak.

This combo stopped me in my tracks. Is that creeping Jenny surrounding a chartreuse-veined colocasia? Perfection!

Canna can develop within the floor, after all, however it’s enjoyable to see it used as a pond plant too.

Teresa’s again porch is jam-packed with potted crops too, plus a group of antlers.

All through the backyard, bicycle elements are quirkily used as trellises, just like the wheel supporting this dragon fruit cactus…

…or perched atop poles — totems of a biking life?

Every kind of fascinating edible crops, like Buddha’s hand, develop right here.

Wild carrot’s lacy parasols

Simply as fairly from above

A steel parrot mugs in entrance, together with a hesperaloe (purple yucca) bloom spike.

Cornflowers add their periwinkle blue.

Associates Cat Jones and Lori Daul. Lori was taking official photographs for the Travis County Grasp Gardeners, the group that placed on the tour.

Beneath a tree, a few chairs with kiwi pillows provide a shady spot for Teresa to benefit from the fruits of her labor.

A aspect view reveals a passel of stock-tank planters overflowing with produce.

The chairs look out on this view: wildflowers, fruit timber, a big greenhouse, and a rooster coop.

The meadow-orchard fills a superb portion of the again backyard.

Horsemint placing out a siren tune for hummingbirds

This man was studying Dune in a again nook.

One other patio vacation spot seems on the very again, subsequent to a inventory tank of pink and purple cosmos below a fruit tree.

The greenhouse

And chickens

I noticed just a few brown eggs contained in the coop.

Vitex flower spires

As I headed again towards the home, a tiered fountain planted with succulents caught my eye. A strappy steel orb held with a chunk of rebar perches on high.

Cilantro/coriander gone to seed

A pet tortoise named CheonCheonHi (Korean for “slowly”) lives in a grassy walled yard beside the home.

On a bike-adorned pole, an indication in Korean declares this CheonCheonHi’s place (or so I assume).

CheonCheonHi resides a high quality life for a rescue tortoise below Teresa’s care. He enjoys a weight loss plan of hibiscus flowers — his favourite meals. Teresa fed him one whereas we watched.

Munch!

The pantry

Bananas in steel tubs are organized on a low wall.

I used to be shocked to see dahlias in bloom in a raised mattress alongside the home. The stifling Texas warmth makes it difficult to have these lovely flowers, however Teresa is working her magic.

A darkish magnificence

Yet another, with a maroon Japanese maple doing a coloration echo behind it

Bees have been flocking to a white crinum.

Extra horsemint

A aspect yard holds raised vegetable beds and a water-collection system.

Out entrance I bumped into my pal Vicki Blachman cradling the proprietor’s very relaxed canine. So freaking cute!

Additionally cute: a furry prickly pear in a small stock-tank planter

The sunny entrance backyard was awash with flowering crops, together with horsemint, salvia, desert willow, vitex, and silver-leaved cardoon.

The cardoon’s artichoke-like fruits have been forming.

Ladybugs have been working them for aphids.

Blue mealy sage…

…was drawing bumblebees.

Spiny-leaved agarita was coated in purple berries — a feast invitation to birds.

Rose of Sharon including pink, ruffled flowers to the colourful scene.

My due to Teresa for opening her backyard, and to the Grasp Gardeners for placing on the tour! As a consequence of one other dedication, I used to be solely capable of tour two of the 4 gardens on the tour. However for a glance again at my exploration of charming Katie Fowl Farm, click on right here.

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Digging Deeper

Could 18: On Austin Dwelling’s Nice Open air Tour, held 5/18 from 10 am to three pm, discover “Pinterest-worthy swimming pools and out of doors kitchens to considerate plantings and classy city density options.” Tickets are $30.

Could 18: Pop as much as Dallas for the 2024 DCMGA Backyard Tour on 5/18 from 10 am to five pm. Tickets are $18 if bought on-line prior to six pm on 5/17, or $22 after 6 pm on 5/17 or on the occasion. For a sneak peek, click on right here.

June 1-2: Take a self-guided, 2-day tour of ponds and gardens in and round Austin on the annual Austin Pond and Backyard Tour, held 6/1 and 6/2, 9 am to five pm. Tickets are $20 to $25.

Come find out about gardening and design at Backyard Spark! I arrange in-person talks by inspiring designers, panorama architects, authors, and gardeners just a few occasions a yr in Austin. These are limited-attendance occasions that promote out shortly, so be a part of the Backyard Spark electronic mail checklist to be notified prematurely; merely click on this hyperlink and ask to be added. Season 8 kicks off in fall 2024. Keep tuned for more information!

All materials © 2024 by Pam Penick for Digging. Unauthorized copy prohibited.

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