Every now and then when I least expect it the setting sun will back light the magnificent westward oaks. Friday evening was a such time. This kind of sky happens more often in the fall or the spring, but here we are in the middle of summer. From inside my home a glimpse of the brilliant orange and purples caught my attention through the front windows. Instantly, dropping what I was doing, I was propelled outdoors. These kinds of things call to me. It was impossible to watch from inside... I had to feel it, to give it my full attention and breathe it in. The balmy hour still filled with humidity, the trees silhouetted by the brightness and me with camera in hand trying to hold on to the simple wonders of God's handiwork.
Most of my mornings start out with me spending at least a few minutes on my back porch. It is fascinating to notice how the first rays of light shooting through the tall oak trees spotlight different plants at different times of the year. For the last couple of weeks I've been noticing the purple fountain grass is blooming quite happily which makes this gardener just as happy. Purposely placed in the back of the garden due to its height, it is a straight shot view, from where I sit to its location in the SE corner of the garden. Those first rays of the morning cause the dark purple leaves and burgundy-red, longarching plumes (12-15 in)to light up like little rays of sunshine themselves.
Purple fountain grass; Pennisetum setaceum 'Purpureum' is larger than other cultivars growing to 5 ft tall. At Hoe and Shovel it is placed between a large planting of plumbago to the left and 5 ft tall mystic (or indigo) spires to the right. The layers behind (not visible until one walks around to the back of the curvy bed) include purple butterfly bush, orange lantana, bush daisy, african iris and marigolds. We tend to crowd in every sun-loving perennial into this last of the sunny spots. In the foreground is the chartreuse colored potato vine I love so much for its vibrance but have to continually trim it back else it would be on top of everything. Then there is purple queen spilling over the barrier into the flax lily, what's left of the zinnias, and white queen caladium.