The Houston area typically doesn't get the spectacular displays of fall color that New England is famous for.
Many of our trees stay green year round and those that do lose their leaves seem to just drop them without fanfare. It seems to me that one of the most colorful "fall color" trees we see at this time of year is the invasive chinese tallow tree.
Other than the Chinese Tallow, much of the "fall color" we're seeing is actually the rusty brown of dead trees that succumbed to the drought and/or pine bark beetle damage. So sad - acres and acres of dead trees.
On a more cheerful note, last weekend I was able to capture some photos of fall colors in our garden, seen in both the flora and the fauna.
First is the front border, which is absolutely overflowing with tropical milkweed. Incidentally, last week I applied to have our property certified as a Monarch Waystation. I'm excited to make this commitment to providing habitat for migrating monarch butterflies and can't wait for the plaque to arrive.
Here's a Monarch, enjoying our hospitality :-)
And here's our insurance that we'll have plenty of tropical milkweed for next year's generation of Monarch butterflies.
Monarch butterflies aren't the only "fall color" in our garden at this time of year. The Gulf Fritillaries are quite abundant right now, seemingly unfazed by the summer drought.
This one is enjoying the Buddleia in the back garden.
This one is enjoying the lantana in the front garden.
I was very happy to see this Buckeye too, dressed in his own fall colors, with the striking eye pattern on his wings.
Last year Buckeyes were very common in the garden, but this is the first I have seen this year. As I get out in the garden this weekend, I hope I see more of them.
In addition to having our garden certified as a Monarch Waystation, it also became a Certified Wildlife Habitat, something I'll tell you more about in a future blog post.
Have a wonderful weekend and Happy Gardening!
Words and photographs by Jayne Wilson, Green and Serene, Jayne's Country Garden.