Monday, March 14, 2011

It's an Early Autumn Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day Downunder.

Isn't she lovely?  Isn't she wonderful?  Oh dear, now I'm waxing on using Stevie's lyrics!  Apologies, but this solitary beauty appeared just this morning ... just in time for my stroll around the garden while the rain clouds hovered in preparation for the daily dose of liquid sunshine.  I couldn't have been happier to see this gorgeous thing ... it's a pass-along so I'm not entirely sure what it is.  (Thank you Ami, after seeing your comment below, I did some research and you're right ... this is Iris domestica, previously known as Belamcanda chinensis, and commonly known as Leopard Lily).  
Anyway, it was a joy to behold ... a promise of more beauty to come!

Here in the southern hemisphere, March is the first month of Autumn ... and in my corner of north-eastern Australia, Autumn is really the start of a brand new gardening year.

I say good riddance to the hot, sultry, steamy Summer and soon I'll be able to bid farewell to the horribly long, drenching 'wet' season with its' accompanying nasty, damaging cyclone season. 

So much of my garden is in recovery mode and it's not a pretty sight.  The whole place is looking totally sodden and water-logged ... there's no chance of mowing.

Everywhere you look there's stumps (can you see the Coconut Palm tree stump through the stairway railings?) where there used to be tall shrubs or trees.  There are rather ugly nastily trimmed trees, thanks to the force of cyclonic winds, and broken dying branches up high in trees where our ladder just won't reach.   These are sights I don't want to share.

But, on closer inspection of my potted plants and the very few undisturbed corners of garden beds, there are little splashes of colour here and there.

Scattered throughout the Courtyard, Shadehouse and Front Garden are some blooms ... some are hidden by hideously overgrown patches of ferns ... some have just started to appear again after experiencing a very, very tough summer ... and some have been in the background largely unnoticed until they're suddenly now they're one of the few things that are actually flowering!

My ever-tough Pentas and Hibiscus fit that category, along with the tiny flowering Cuphea plants that are hidden in under so many of the shrubs.

So, let's see what's out there if you look really, really closely!
My beautiful Viola hederacea and Azalea which are both adding joy to my day right now!  Sorry, I've gone a bit overboard with the photos of both, but I'm just so pleased to have these in flower out in the rather dreary Courtyard Garden.

This amazing Spathoglottis plicata or Ground Orchid has shown its' first ever little spray of flowers and they've been showing off for ages now ... they've got my tick of approval.

Look!  I spotted just a couple of lovely dainty Pink Trumpet flowers on one of my decimated Tabebuias.  It's almost like the tree is saying it will never be beaten!  Such a welcome sight!

I also spotted a raceme of golden yellow flowers on my rather battered Cassia fistula ... the lonely spray was way up high and almost hidden at the back of the tree, but my eagle eyes found it!

To share what else I found in bloom around my place, I have created a little slideshow.  There's music accompanying the show, so please go over to the sidebar on the right and turn off the Playlist ... the stop button is at the bottom of the circle shape on the virtual ipod, sorry it's hard to see!

I'll end off by showing some of the fabulous foliage plants adding a touch of interest to this early Autumn garden that's slowly getting back on its' feet, so to speak!  These fabulous plants have weathered the storms, the deluge and even the cyclones of the past Summer, and deserve their place in the sun!

I'm joining Mary's Mosaic Monday  meme,

and Pam's Foliage Follow-Up  meme with my post today.

Please do go and visit these sites to see some fabulous photos.


  1. Hi Bernie, The garden still looks wonderful even with the rough weather you have had. Beautiful!!!

  2. Bernie, I can only imagine how you feel about the majority of your garden. i am sure it will come back but the torture of waiting has to be painful.

    Keep your patio and porch area filled with lovely plants, they will make you feel better until things start to rejunivate in the outer gardens.


  3. Beautiful blooms, such interesting flowers, too. That first one, stunning. They all are!

  4. Somewhere in cyberspace is my first comment. Don't know where it went! Just want you to know that I did so enjoy my walk through your garden. What glorious color! Thank you for sharing! Cathy

  5. Birnie: I am glad that you still have quite some beautiful flowers to brighten your day. That Chinese ground orchid and the foliages are just gorgeous.

    I think the first flower is blackberry lily, or leopard lily.

  6. Bernie,
    Just a little touch of sunshine has also got me whistling a happy tune... wow once again you have come up with a terrific array of wonderful colour. thanks for sharing.

  7. Bernie I recently visited Sydney, Australia for the first time! It is a beautiful city!

    I hope your sutumn and winter will be mild!

  8. That ground orchid is beautiful. I took quite a few shots of it yesterday at a forest reserve and am contemplating of growing them. All the plants above look wonderful despite the rough weather.

  9. What a beautiful place you live Bernie. Like a tropical island ~ so unlike where I live. So nice to see all your green lush growth and variety.

  10. Lovely leopard Lilly, Gorgeous ground Orchids, Triumphant Tabebuias. Fabulous foliage Sensational slide show...Its official I am jealous. All I have is GREEN and lot's of it. Lol!

  11. I thought the Stevie Wonder song was a reference to you, Bernie. Should be as the plants are making a magnificent come back and your intitial forebearance on seeing your garden wrecked was admirable. Love the blue Pentas (?) and you have Violas too (wonder if they produce self-fertilising cleistogamous flowers too?!). Looking very lush for Autumn - keep these gorgeous images coming.

  12. Bernie, As usual I'm blown away by the quantity and quality of your plants. I didn't know they'd renamed belamcanda - I do like its new name better - best wishes as you and your garden recover :)

  13. Hi there this is my first time joining in with Monday Mosaic and I am now hopping around from Italy viewing all the wonderful blogs that join in. What simply wonderful plants you have in your garden.

  14. Beautiful plants and lovely photos.. but my favorite is that Belamcanda at the beginning. It really does look like leopard! I love it.

  15. Regardless of the weather and all, your garden still looks so lovely. You have hints of colour all over and I really like the little ground orchid! It's delicate beauty makes this one a keeper. Too bad it won't grow here in my zone 3 garden. Have a terrific week.

  16. Hi Bernie. You have some beautiful foliage plants. I think your Hibiscus and Azaleas are so beautiful. The iris is fantastic!

  17. What a lovely video of your garden treasures. I have a bellacamba in my garden too.

  18. So many very pretty plants in these photos. The mosaics are gorgeous! My favorite... the Chinese Ground Orchid. Oh, wow!

  19. Your garden and the flowers are beautiful. Walking around and watch him and admire Yours

  20. Jen, the weather deteriorated markedly today. We've had torrential rain last night and all day today. I can't wait for this 'wet' to end.

    Eileen, great minds think alike. I'm keen to get my pots filled with flowers ... if only I could get out there for any length of time.

    Thank you Carol. It's lovely to find at least some blooms.

    Cathy, thank you for visiting. I can't wait until I have lots more colour around the garden.

    Ami, thank you for letting me know the name of that plant. It is indeed the Leopard lily.

    Africanaussie, I wish you could send some of those golden rays down our way.

    Pat ... so glad you enjoyed your trip downunder. Mild would be most welcome!

    One, I'm amazed at the resilience of some of my plants. I'll take any bloom they can offer!

    Custom Comforts ... yes it certainly is lush and green here right now. We've had so much rain that we're now sick of seeing those grey clouds looming.

    Sue ... lol, so clever. Thanks for your kind comments ... always appreciated.

    Laura ... you crack me up! That blue flower is an Evolvulus ... and I'm too embarrassed to ask the Violas if they're in a closed or open relationship!

  21. The garden is still stunning to me Bernie and I'm sure that the beautiful autumnal weather will be an advantage to those plants and help them on their recovery. My favourites are your foliage plants as even these foliage plants as houseplants in the UK are difficult to keep indoors and it's lovely to see them in their natural environment outdoors.

  22. Your garden is very lush and tropical right now. I love the blooms of your Iris domestica, didn't realize they changed the name. I have a solid yellow variety. :)

  23. Your blooms are fantastic but I'm particularly fond of your foliage. Happy GBBD (and FFF tomorrow)!

  24. Hi Bernie,
    What a show! I need to go in the kitchen and get some popcorn or something. LOL
    Really, what a gorgeous set of flowers and foliage. That begonia is to die for. I'm may get brave and try some again, but most hate outdoor Houston for some reason.
    That first flower is one of the most beautiful I've ever seen.
    Happy GBBD!
    BTW: Thanks for noticing my new header. I was so excited to switch it out from the drab,fall leaves winter header. Yeah!
    David/ Houston

  25. Beautiful photos and wonderful slideshow. After what Queensland has been through I was a little worried about you. So glad to see your lovely post this Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day! May your "brand new gardening year" be a great one!

  26. I like the way song lyrics pop into your head when you talk about your flowers; seems to me you, like me, have a fine romance with your garden. Isn't it wonderful!?

  27. Your Iris, red hot hibiscus and the Chinese Ground Orchids look so stunning! All your blooms are lovely despite the recent bad weather, even your foliage are great looking!

  28. Beautiful Bernie. Blooms, video and photographs. Always a pleasure seeing your garden each month. Snow is just starting to leave, but it may be a month or more for a bloom is to appear here in Niagara Falls.

  29. Hey looks like you have all the wonderful colours of salvia. I like purple and salmon/pink also. Just that when I was loooking for them, they were not at their best anymore. So didn't bring any home. And your begonias are gorgeous!


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