Sunday, July 6, 2014

Flower Flaunt ... On A Mid-Winter's Friday.

I'm a little late in posting this.  Whilst I started the post on Thursday, unfortunately I spent most of Friday until today laid up with the flu and I just didn't get the chance to finish.  Anyhoo, here it is at last ... late but I'll still call it a Friday Flower Flaunt post.

July is the second of our very mild winter months.  Our winter solstice occurred on June 20 and while we're waiting for the days to get longer and longer, we're still waiting for our chilly tropical winter temps.

We did have a couple of rather cool and drizzly days around the middle of June ... the daytime temps dipped down to around 19 - 20 deg C and we didn't see the sun for at least three days.  But since then the usual clear blue-sky, pleasantly comfortable days have returned and our daytime temps have risen once again to the 25 - 26 deg C mark.

There is a little bit of dew dribble on our verandah hood in the mornings, which is clear indication that our night time temps have been dropping.  Lately the overnight temps have been dipping down to the mid-teens, but it doesn't mean we've pulled out loads of blankets or that we're rugged up to the eyeballs in winter woollies. 

Some signs that it's tropical winter time include the appearance of bright red berries on the Ardisia elliptica, also known as the Shoebutton Ardisia.  These berries can be seen during our winter and spring.

Another sign that it's winter is the show of coiled seed pods forming on our native Acacia mangium. 

Of course, the show on the Euphorbia leucocephla, or Snowflake Bush, is a dead giveaway that it's winter here.

My shrub is covered in bracts and tiny blooms at the moment and has been for weeks now.

The Dracaena godseffianas are blooming, and this is a common sight during the early part of our tropical wintertime.

The flower sprays can go unnoticed by those who are not in-the-know, but they are quite a pretty sight close up.

The potted Azalea, out on my courtyard, has always put on a great show during our winter. There used to be a matching pair out there for many years, but I've moved the other one into one of the new garden beds and it's only now starting to show blooms.  That means the two little shrubs are no longer in sync with their blooming.

The few potted plants I have left out in the courtyard are all putting on a lovely show at the moment.  They're all covered in flowers.

The plants that I've added to the larger of the new garden beds have all settled in nicely, and there are a few blooms scattered here and there.

Crossandra infundibuliformis flowers pretty much all year round here.

There's a little Salvia hidden at the back of the bed that's in bloom.

There's also a Dracaena fragrans 'Massangeana' blooming,

and it's scented flowers are filling the air with a heady perfume.

In one of the other new garden beds the Salvia involucrata is blooming. 

I just love those hot pink flowers.

I've planted a Euphorbia 'Hip Hop' next to the Salvia.  It's planted in the high end of the garden bed, out of reach of the marauding hordes of Agile wallabies that just seem to love nibbling this plant to the ground.  Thankfully the Euphorbia is doing really well now that it's allowed to grow and flourish.

There are some Salvia splendens in another part of this garden bed, and they're flowering too. 

Elsewhere at my place,

there's a Bougainvillea blooming,

an old double Gerbera flowering,

the Pennisetum advena 'Rubrum' has flowerheads,

the Thunbergia erecta 'Tru Blu' has begun another blooming cycle for the year,

as has the Polygala,

while the Russelias, both red

and cream, continue to bloom.

There are always Hibiscus flowers to be found somewhere,

and I just love catching a glimpse of the wonderful colours on the back of the Hibiscus rosa-sinensis blooms.

Near the pergola, my variegated Bougainvilles has started blooming again,

and my Hibiscus schizopetalus continue to show their wonderful flowers.

I can spot the very last of the Mussaenda philippica 'Aurore' bracts and flowers at the back of the courtyard garden,

while the white Impatiens walleriana and

the Plectranthus 'Mona Lavender' put on a show out on the courtyard pavers.

I have one potted Eucharis sitting out in the courtyard.  It began throwing out a flowerhead a couple of weeks ago,

and it's now almost fully open and the perfume is simply adorable.. There are more flowerheads on the way.

My two potted Schlumbergera, or Zygocactus plants, are coming back from a horrendous ordeal suffered earlier this year.  When they're not in bloom, I stash them in my shadehouse garden out of the way.  Unfortunately they had been knocked over by a mother and joey Agile wallaby who took up residence in there for about a month or so.  I hadn't noticed the poor plants until it looked like they were well and truly on their last legs.

 Thankfully they have both risen from the dead, and are now showing some blooms.

Out in the shadehouse garden,

another of my Dracaena fragrans 'Mussangeana' plants, also known as Happy Plants, is blooming.  The perfume occasionally wafts into the house in the early evening or morning when I open the door on that side of the house.

So that's a round-up of what's flowering at the moment.

I thought I'd just add this shot, as the wonderful pattern created by some rather hungry little critter caught my eye.

I'm joining Tootsie for her Fertilizer Friday / Flaunt Your Flowers meme

and I'm joining Today's Flowers



  1. As always your flowers and gardens are a delight to see. I've missed seeing them. Everything is looking great there. I have crossandra babies that I need to plant around in the gardens. They are in a planter right now.

    Have a nice weekend ~ FlowerLady

    1. Thanks Lorraine. I have been very sporadic with my posts for months now, I know. I'm afraid work and family commitments have meant my blogs have taken a back seat for a while. I've also lacked the motivation needed to write new posts, as my garden is undergoing a bit of a transition period this year. I've not planted any annuals at all, which means the usual flower display at this time of the year is significantly reduced. Still, at least there are some lovely flowers for me to enjoy. Hopefully, next autumn/winter will see a return of the courtyard garden display.

  2. What an utterly delightful garden you have Bernie. I really do like the Snowflake bush - does it do well in all day hot sun particularly say the hot western side of a building? I'd rather fancy one in the middle of my little front garden but it faces the west.
    Enjoy your weekend and the lovely cool weather!

    1. Thanks so much, Rose. The Snowflake Bush can most definitely be planted in full sun, and it will take the heat as well. They are a very tough, low maintenance plant once they're established. I would just make sure though, that it gets regular watering when you first plant it out.

      If you do plant one in the middle of your front garden, it will make a fabulous show once it matures. They look magnificent during our wintertime.

    2. Many thanks Bernie, Bunnings shall be seeing me sooner rather than later! (I'm trying to get a 'white' theme going in the front) Perhaps I'll get two! :)

    3. Rose, you might need to underplant as the shrub does look a little scraggly once the flowering is finished. Don't forget the other fabulous white Euphorbia ... Euphorbia 'Hip Hop' or 'Diamond Frost' which make great groundcovers, although they can also reach small shrub height. Another fabulous white plant would be the Mussaenda philippica 'Aurore' ... hardy as and would take full sun and summer heat. One of my all-time favourite white flowering shrubs is the Wrightia. It does look spectacular when covered in its pure white flowers, and it has a couple of blooming cycles throughout the year.

    4. Gosh, here I am months later to say thank you for the above information! It did not go unappreciated and Bernie, you've done a spectacular job on the kitchen!

  3. Your garden is always a joy to see. I had to laugh at your mild winter temps of 20 deg C, because we haven't even had summer temps like that! The end of June has been a lot colder than usual here. Have a great day!

  4. Lovely to see your winter plants being presented like this, I must admit I would really like winter temperatures like you have! I don’t mind the heat, I tolerate it well, at least up to around 34-35 degrees, but perhaps your summer temps are even higher than that? Anyway, loved all the plants, some of them of course very familiar to me like azalea, salvia, bougainvillea, gerbera etc, and lots of other more familiar as houseplants. I hope you feel better by now, have a great week!

  5. A marvelous variety of beautiful flowers Bernie, and love that Kookaburra. Thank you so much for sharing with Today's Flowers :)

  6. your garden get a wauw from me each time I see it !!!!

  7. Wow so much growing in your winter garden with all the lush foliage too...I hope you over the flu and feeling so much better now!

  8. G'Day Bernie! I wish our winter looked that way in my garden. So many things blooming and so many with fragrance. I think the blooms that smell wonderful are twice as nice as those that don't. There is a huge mimosa tree in the neighbors yard that perfumes the early and late hours when the air is heavy. Wonderful! Good to see you posting! Sorry about that flu bug! Bad stuff!

  9. I always enjoy seeing your exotic garden throughout the year. It is delightful that your winter is marked by blooming flowers! I am fascinated by the Dracaena godseffianas. Both its leaves and blooms are worth a close look. I am glad your potted Schlumbergera are rebounding. Nature is often a lot more resilient than we think!


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