Time Outdoors

Fraught times we live, yes?   It’s hard to stay calm and breathe deeply. 

If you’re healthy and able, go outdoors.  Walk.  Ride your bike.  Smell the roses.  Don’t hug, shake hands, or kiss cheeks–save those sweet things for another time.

I feel fortunate that I enjoy bit of space to roam and ramble and soothe my fears, if only temporarily.  I feel lucky that I live in a neighborhood where we watch out for and call on one another in times of need.  I feel blessed that I live in a larger community which places a premium on support and presence when needed.   

As an additional boost to my soul, it’s spring and there’s something new in the outside world each day to see, to appreciate and find comfort in.

Giant spiderwort, Tradescantia gigantea, are in their prime.

The Spiderwort provide plenty of work for the pollinators. Honeybees and even some native bees are busy, busy, busy with these blooms.


Globe mallowSphaeralcea ambigua,  bloomed all winter, but somehow, their color is more vibrant now.


Coral honeysuckleLonicera sempervirens, dangles its clusters of spring flowers.

I saw some native sweat bees around these blooms yesterday, though none early this morning.  Where are the hummingbirds?  This is one of their favorite flowers!


Dewberries, mostly for the birds, will follow their pretty white blooms, helped along by my honeybees.


The poppies are popping.  Really, what more could I possibly add to this?

This smear of honeybee at the top of the flower is the best photo I managed, given herspeed and the breezy south winds.


In the same plant family as the spiderwort, this charming False Dayflower or Widow’s TearsTinantia anomala, is one of many that grace my garden.  These seed out prolifically, showing up here and there.  But I don’t mind; they’re lovely, springy, cheery–and easy to pull up.


March and April (and sometimes, May) are season of columbines.  Mine are a mix of two natives to Central Texas:  Aquilegia chrysantha and Aquilegia canadensis


Columbines show their beauty in many poses.

Oak pollen drapes over the flower.


Texas mountain laurelSophora secundiflora, bloom briefly, but beautifully.   The tree is a favorite of mine–and many here in Central Texas-and the blooms are a favorite of several native bee species.  The bees-on-the-blooms are usually too high up for me to get a decent shot of their activity.

This is a tree worthy of any garden.

It’s also oak pollen season–and how!  This blossom wears its oak pollen well!


CrossvineBignonia capreolata, a hardy evergreen vine, announces itself with bold, summer-like colors during March and April.  Interestingly, when Crossvine blooms in the summer, the color is a pastel peachy hue.

The vine should cover the fence in a year or two.  I’m looking forward to a wall of springtime terracotta and yellow.


I’m lucky to grow a garden: to tend, to nurture, to love.  My garden, with its blooms, beasts, and beauty, is a respite from troubles–and always has been.

Take care of yourselves.  Make time to go outdoors:  in your own green space, at a park, or along a tree-lined street–just avoid crowds.  Be safe, wash your hands, don’t hoard.  Watch out for your loved ones and neighbors.

Be well.

I’m joining with Carol  of May Dreams Garden and her monthly huzzah for blooms–pleas pop over and enjoy blooms from many places.  You’ll feel better.     

35 thoughts on “Time Outdoors

  1. Your garden is looking good and I’m having Poppy envy. We are lucky to be able to spend time in the garden. My kids that live in the big east coast cities have been going to parks and taking walks, which has calmed them.


    • Those poppies, such show offs! Yes, we are lucky, those of us with our own personal space. I really feel for people in large cities. But most still can get outside–at least a little–as long as they practice ‘safe distances’ from others. I’m sure your kids felt better after some outdoor time. That seems to be a common thread. Stay safe.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Allison. Spring is pretty great here, I must admit. Of course, spring is pretty great most places. The spiderwort are interesting: the more alkaline the soil, the more purple the color. The more acidic, the color trends pink. Most, though not all, of mine are purple.


  2. Yes! What a great idea! A bike ride sounds absolutely perfect for today. Your garden looks wonderful, Tina! That Globe mallow is such a stunner! I’m a big fan of Tradescantia too, but mine are nowhere near bloom yet. Can you believe it – yesterday, it snowed all day! What the…? Suddenly by late afternoon, it was all gone again, and the roads were clear. So very freaky… just to add to the general mood of our existence, these days. Sheesh, hang in there. Our cherished outdoor activities are perfect means toward the goal of “flattening the curve”. Stay safe!


    • Wow–snow! That’s weird, isn’t it? I know that my son reminded me that it wasn’t consistently ‘not cold and wet’ until May, but the times I visited Oregon in spring, the weather was always perfect. Very seductive, to one who fantasizes about moving.

      Yes, I walked today, as it’s wet and chilly. Austin drivers (not that there are many out at the moment…) are too distracted for me to want to ride when it’s wet. It’s nice here though. I’m glad for the chilly, wet weather.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Your garden is way ahead of mine. I am looking forward to seeing many of the same or similar plants abloom in no time now. Happy GBBD.


    • Thank you, Chloris. It’s a beautiful tree. Funnily enough, my Hub is looking at the post right now and chastised me for not mentioning the fragrance of the blooms. They’re well-known for their potent “grape soda” fragrance–it can fill a park–or backyard! Weirdly, unless I get my nose right up into one, I can’t seem to smell the blooms, except at night.

      The bloom clusters are large, roughly fist sized. Unfortunately, they don’t have a long bloom time, just a few weeks in March. Still, the tree has gorgeous foliage and lovely form.


  4. There are many beautiful varieties blooming in your garden.Poppies and Aquilegeas are stunning .
    That crossvine blooms resembles much like trumpet vine aka Campsis radikans.Happy blooms day.


  5. And oooh are they liking the “chilly” wet weather! We’re getting outside 2-3 times a day for long periods for the little ones’ wiggles, soothing nature time for all, and the volume of youth is quieter to my ears outdoors 😉
    I’m glad you and yours are healthy. I wish people didn’t need a reminder not to hoard…


    • Me too–it’s been real “March” weather, but it’ll get warm again this week, then cold. Wee ones’ loud voices are easier when they’re outdoors, no question about that. Y’all stay healthy and safe.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I still dig that Texas mountain laurel and cross vine. The cross vine looks like Campsis radicans, and sort of makes me wonder if that is what I saw growing wild in Oklahoma.


  7. I think the garden is what will preserve my sanity in the coming weeks. You have lots of scrumptious flowers! And I love the colors – especially the blue Tradescantia and the orange Globe Mallow. The Texas Mountain Laurel also fantastic, I had no idea there was a blue Mountain Laurel.


  8. I was rolling down highway 3 in Dickinson last Saturday when a vacant lot filled with purple and white caught my eye. I was pretty sure the purple was spiderwort, and it was. As for the white — it was spiderwort, too! They were everywhere, along with white blue-eyed grass. I wasn’t even fifteen minutes from home, and my day already was complete!


  9. A calm voice is quite pleasant during this time of constant bad news. Thank you for letting me tour your garden via the internet, although I would have preferred the scents in person.


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