Texas lantana

Why do I like this one so much? Sometimes it’s hard to answer that, but for this one it’s easy. These are native plants that became a pet commercial product; you see them in landscaping sections of big box stores around here de rigeur. But ours– that one is definitely not a Home Depot special (I prefer Lowe’s given patterns of donations made by the respective businesses, but it’s less poetic). This one is growing in an inopportune spot along a fenceline that runs where the driveway swerves to accommodate some oaks, further proof it wasn’t a curated planting but just something that, maybe 75 or 100 years ago, you might have just found growing wild, and wouldn’t have wondered whether it was put there by human hands.


Some kind of yellow daisy

There’s a million of ’em. Englemann daisy, maybe. I seeded these out back and we have a few acres of them going now. Great coverage. In person when the wind blows it’s surreal, just this floating golden haze over the grass.

We’re going to camp out here this weekend. The skies really are that blue.

Nervous mimosa

So cool. I mean, Linneaus first wrote about them. They have great fuzzy flower balls (pink fibers with orange tips) but the leaves actually shut when you touch them.

Bit hard to get great video given wind and, well, my competencies. But here’s a shot.

Link to a movie of the leaves closing when I hassle them [external link because this is fun but ain’t no way I’m paying $96 for a year of premium for one movie]: http://motion.cps.utexas.edu/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/IMG_5027.mov

Found right out by the front gate. I have seen these around there on and off for years.

Rough-leaf dogwood

I like these. Despite being small trees, they’re subtle, and this year, that’s a nice balance from the blasts of violet and blue and blood orange and pink. I saw these along a fenceline on one of the faster roads I bike on. I was in a rare moment when I was going quick, and knew I was going quick, and was starting to enjoy seeing how quick I’d gone on the whole ride (bike computer mostly for safety reasons, but hey, I’m a data guy). Maybe it would be a number and I’d like it. I was musing on that, because it had been so long since I’d cared about how fast I was in something, and I decided I wasn’t embarrassed and liked it and wanted to finish above 18 mph. But then I saw these flowers and hit the brakes and made sure I got some good pictures. I’m glad I did, although it was fun to get in touch with that weird little part of me I didn’t know still existed.

Pink mimosa

Like a lot of native wildflowers, these are going bonkers this year. According to our book, a “an erect, tortured-looking shrub”. Kristin and I agree it deserves a better description. We’ve decided to call it a “pink volcano” or a “fluffy pink sea urchin”.

Keep your eye out for the corresponding common name update in Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country (M. Enquist).

Red buckeye

Pretty sure that’s what it is– lovely tree. Had to climb through a ditch and lean over a ranch fence, hence the distance from the subject. Not the best picture but nice to see on a cloudy morning ride a few miles north of the place.

Blue-eyed grass

Oh I love love love these so much. I tried really hard for years to get them going from seed. I think I had one or two pop up over the years along the drive. But this year, it’s great, they are all over our neighborhood. But interestingly, you go a mile or two in any direction, and you barely see them. Stars have aligned!

Apparently they hybridize a bunch so lots of subtle variety, or maybe not so subtle and this is actually something else. But close enough for me.