28 October, 2011

October’s wildflowers 2011

Join me at Gail of Clay and Limestone’s Wildflower Wednesday meme
Click thru to see what she would like from you. 
Photos were taken yesterday in my garden. 
Some of the bulbs have faded and those pictures are from earlier this month.

Bietou, Erica baccans
trailing daisy, Plectranthus neochilus

Sole survivor of my attempt at fynbos is this little pink berry heath Erica baccans.
The bright yellow bietou by the front door, is a gift from the birds in Camps Bay, brought to this garden as a cutting, now a small tree! Near the jetty the blue spires of Plectranthus neochilus, with funky leaves. The ivory trailing daisy suffers from the dreaded Lost labellus.

Lachenalia, Veltheimia
Albuca, Hypoxis

Lachenalia, Veltheimia and Albuca are all fading and gone to seed now. But the sunny yellow Hypoxis seems to be able to bloom continually. This I like for its three ranks of leaves.


The inherited watsonias come in gentle pink, tall spires and in more frightening magenta bowing its swan neck.

Caterpillar on Gazania

Sharing the spirit of Gail’s pollinator friendly garden, there are caterpillars, and busy birds.

Painted Lady and fruit chafer beetle on Scabiosa

Cinderella (Cynthia cardui Painted Lady) in butterfly ball gown splendour, 
must beware. 
At midnight she reverts to her black and white maid’s uniform 
(fruit chafer beetle). 
From sipping champagne, to changing the sheets on the Scabiosa
For my Northern readers as an antidote to the 
No wind No rain November days 
Lowering with sullen grey clouds shawling your shoulders. I remember Zurich.


The velvety red Pelargonium frightens the camera, and has few flowers. Salmon flames up from its pockets across the garden. My pink favourite, citrus scented with fierce leathery pointed leaves.

Pelargonium tomentosum
bottom right the usual sunny species

And white. Now blooms the shady Pelargonium tomentosum with its huge soft leaves exuding spearmint and ethereal drifts of tiny flowers. (We may not say miniscule, it means lower case I learnt yesterday!)

Succulents on the Karoo Koppie

I think of my Karoo Koppie succulents as over for the year. But the camera found buds. Winter’s red aloes are done, but for this latecomer. And the vygies are now faded and gone.

Buddleja, Salvia  chamelaeagnea
Melianthus major, Grewia

The Melianthus still has flowers, which have been claimed as MINE ALL MINE by the malachite sunbird. Going to seed, and what seeds! In the shade on the Woodland Walk pink stars of Grewia, reaching spires of Buddleia which waft honey to the verandah when the breeze is right. Returning to the Paradise and Roses garden I see the first of the blue sage.

Many readers are from my country of South Africa, but few comment. 

Firefly in PE

There is NO Word Verification 
(thanks to Jen of Muddy Boot Dreams and Jodi the bloomingwriter

Pictures and words
by Diana of Elephant's Eye
- wildlife gardening in Porterville,
near Cape Town in South Africa
(If you mouse over brown text,
it turns shriek pink. Those are my links.)


  1. I visit your site surfing around for some positive material today and i really enjoy the visit.
    It is very nice to feel the smell of the countryside and enjoy the bright colors of the flowers from the fotos during making a brake on this difficult working day in this stressful office - city environment

  2. Zuzu - has a post up on Followers, comments and life with LOTS of comments. Bloggers are interested in blogging ;~)

  3. Well done on your Erica baccans - mine flowered, looked stunning and then died - they are difficult! I also have Painted Ladies visiting - mostly the Gazania rigens. No sign of flowers on my Salvia yet. Thanks for the encouragement for Wildflower meme. Will make a concerted effort this weekend

  4. A very fine Wildflower Wednesday showing Diana. I have to remind myself that you're going into summer while we are going into winter. So your garden is full of life. I, too, wish more of the local readers would comment on our blogs. I remember how hard it was to comment before I was a blogger. I always appreciate not having to go through word verification. I suspect that some bloggers are unaware that they even have it on~It's a default setting and invisible to them. I do moderate after three days and that has eliminated problem spammers. gail

  5. Yes, Diana, we are indeed bundling up against the cold. Even here in Rhode Island, we had a frost last night. I went hiking in the woods with friends today and it was chilly but bright and beautiful, which makes everything OK.

    I loved the wildflowers!

  6. Diana, The Painted Ladies and Scabiosa photos are just wonderful! I love the color combinations too. Stunning post! I am afraid I shall not see another butterfly until next spring. Yes it is very very early for the snow we just had and the storm coming tomorrow. Brava! to getting rid of word verification. We approve all comments anyway. For some of us . . . especially challenged at times . . . it prevents leaving comments at all.

  7. Hi,

    I am still here, lurking too. I don't always make it over everyday, but I do come often to look at your lovely garden and the great photography skill you have. Keep up the great work.

    I am only blogging about once a week right now. My art show is in two weeks. I spend most of my free time working on preparations for the show.


  8. I love looking at your flowers. Some I know, others are new to me. But I didn't know that the painted lady became a chafer beetle! I hope some of your lurkers will come out and say hello.

  9. Your flowers are beautiful - and so many of them that I am very envious. I would keep using miniscule, always tiny to me and sounds the part too!

  10. Holley - sometimes the picture runs away with the story ;~)

  11. Beautiful blommies and outstanding photos! I lurk and comment - when I don't comment, know I am lurking :)

  12. It is a pleasure to walk on your wonderfull blog, lovely fotos , best regard from Belgium.

  13. Always something delightful on your blog. I'm noticing that fewer of us are commenting everywhere. I'm making an effort to resume commenting. I'm hoping that my fall-to-winter blogging will be worthy of comments.

    Someone left a rant against women as a comment on my blog today. I simply marked it as spam, blocked the sender and deleted it. I don't care if he is boycotting American women (we're probably glad for it), but my blog is not his forum.

  14. Lovely pics of lovely flowers, I think the cream ones are my faves. is the painted lady the same as monarch? The bietou is special because you have adopted and nurtured its growth as a gift from the birds ...

  15. Nell Jean - that NASTY rant was also on Catmint and Jen Muddy Boots. Busy sad man.

    Catmint - we do also have African Monarchs, but I am ashamed to admit I'm still trying to ID one.

  16. Always enjoy visiting your blog and the lovely pictures...

  17. Oh Diana these are some of the most beautiful wildflowers I have seen. I love seeing familiar flowers like scabiosa and now I know where they are wildflowers...for me an exotic I love that still blooms here even after many freezes...and the butterflies are a welcome sight. So nice to see things in your graden I cannot anymore and can dream of through your beautiful garden.

  18. South African beauty!

    Glad to found another SA blogger (my husband grew up in Cape Town), and still have tons of family there and Joberg.


  19. Just found you via Pam's blog Digging.

    I'm always interested in climates that are anywhere similar to mine - I'm in Phoenix, Arizona, USA - classed as low desert.

    I'll be adding you to my regular reads.

  20. I find that I have a lot of lurkers as well who never comment, some of them often turning out to be friends. I don't think people always realise how easy it is to comment and how muxh it means to a blogger.

    Again, as always, I am amazed at the flowers in your garden. I started climbing into mine over the weekend to try and get (and then hopefully keep) it into shape. If I can just find somebody to take my two big palm trees off my hands so that I can open up my garden.

  21. I loved your pictures and descriptions of these 'wildflowers' - many of them very beautiful. Several times I struggled with melianthus major but our damp English winters always killed it off. I love the image of your sunbird claiming it as his / her own!

  22. Landscapelover - now you are in India, new plant possibilities open up.

  23. There's no question your beautiful Scabiosa is the focal point of your garden buffet, at least for the butterflies. I love your assortment of Pelargonium blooms too. We have very little left in bloom now that the nights are turning cold, and days drawing so short. Makes me anxious for spring already!

  24. So many beauties blooming in your garden--I love the creatures on the Scabiosa blooms! It's wonderful to experience spring virtually through your blog as we (in reality) head for winter.

  25. Wonderful wildflowers! I love the photos of the scabiosa and the painted lady! Your garden is so vibrant, a testament to your loving care for your particular spot of earth.

  26. Hi Diana,
    I love all your beautiful flowers in your garden. Amazing!
    I turned my word verification off for a while but I got so much unpleasent spam as well as people trying to sell me stuff, that I had to turned it back on again. With the word verification on I get no spam at all.
    All the best,
    xx Ingrid

  27. What a wonderful selection of flowers you have blooming - I am so envious - in the UK everything is going over ready for winter. Just to see your sunny post makes me feel a little better.

  28. I always love reading your blog, and I usually do leave comments. I'm so enjoying the fact that for you it really is spring/summer arriving and not the false spring I'm experiencing here. Christina

  29. Can be tongue-tied comment wise, Diana, as your posts invite so much to say.

    Felt a bit like the sunbird when spotted your blue sage (I wish). Seeing the familiar as at home in your zone as mine a hands across the world feeling. And then there is the shock of the new- totally unfamiliar Watsonias, Veltheimia. Have to look them up and thus become knowledgeable before the dreaded Lost Memorus sets in. Must remember miniscule.

  30. Christina - I'll be back to see your olives.

  31. Fynbos is something I would like to know better, Diana, especially edible plants. We bought the book KUKAMAKRANKA by Renate Coetzee, but still one is so hesitant to try things out. Of course this brings me to your idea of planting fynbos as one cannot go and ransack the "veld"!

  32. Marie - edible fynbos? There was a herb and edible garden at the Hout Bay Museum. I have a booklet from them. And also at Kirstenbosch. We have wild amaranth, but I can't quite bring myself to try it. What if? I do eat Oxalis and Tulbaghia leaves.

  33. Diana, you have a lot of beautiful wildflowers, and the photos are doubly beautiful indeed! Now i realized i am not making mosaics anymore, it was just a past craze, maybe i should do it again.


Photographs and Copyright

Photographs are from Diana Studer or Jurg Studer.
My Canon PowerShot A490

If I use your images or information, it will be clearly acknowledged with either a link to the website, or details of the book. If you use my images or words, I expect you to acknowledge them in turn.

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