It’s not officially summer yet, but here in Florida, I think we can call it early. If the temperatures and tropical storms on the horizon aren’t enough of a giveaway, leave it to nature and the garden to provide the ultimate testimony. In living color.
Here in Zone 9, seasonal changes are not as pronounced as in cold weather climes, but nonetheless there still are plants that rest and go dormant while waiting for “summer” to make a triumphant return. And seeds can take root in short order—whether you plant them yourself or they blow in on a balmy tropical breeze. (Not a bad metaphor for a returning transplant like myself!)
Case in point: I recently observed the phenomenon in a hedge along the front of the house… It hadn’t been trimmed in a while and isn’t known to flower, yet suddenly towering shoots appeared to be sprouting from it with clusters of orange flowers bursting forth. After a closer look I realized that the shoots weren’t part of the hedge, but a vine not included in the original landscape plan that had arrived of its own accord, in a defiant act of self-propagation. Now it was entwined with the shrub—its trailing shoots cascading down and showing off colorful blooms.
A little research identified this spontaneous sprouter as trumpet vine, a resplendent beauty that doesn’t deserve to be mixed up with a soon-to-be trimmed hedge that doesn’t fully appreciate it. So, I’ll have to find a way to relocate it and give it true pride of place.
Apparently, trumpet vine may require some monitoring as it can be a bit of a wild card—but I like that in it… Fighting for its individuality among the well-manicured shrubs of the world. I can’t think of a more lovely way to announce (in splashy fashion) that spring has taken early leave, and yes, the “summer” heat is on!