“Holey Marbles Batman”

Remember I mentioned the new craze
in the ESP was filling up the Texas
holey rocks up with marbles?

Well I decided to get in close and see what all the fuss was about.
The passageways and caves in this strange subterranean
landscape were staggering, but treacherous to walk on. 


I left a trail of string to ensure that I would safely find my way out of these labyrinths.
I rounded a corner in this cave and caught this marble reflecting the Texas
sun lodged in the roof of the cave.

This particular marble was a little too well embedded into this holey rock for
someone’s liking.

While I had my nose down in these rocks, I decided to pop in on Bill and Ben, the holey rock men.

I only got through saying hi to them both, and a brief nonsensical conversation
about the marbles, when they got a knock at their stone door…a visitor!
Yes there are now three of these tiny succulents growing on practically nothing!
“Goodbye Bill, goodbye Ben, Bill and Ben, Bill and Ben, the holey rock men!”

                                                                                                “I can see green succulents.”
One of Bill and Ben’s neighbors, finding life in this holey rock’s eye socket…spooky.

From rocks to water…
Here was the scene earlier this week in my feeder tank. 
I call it my feeder tank as I siphon water out of here into
my main 900 gallon pond when water levels get low. There
will be no siphoning going on here any time soon.
I do not want a repeat of last years fiasco:


My Texas gulf coast toads are up to their
egg-laying shenanigans once again!

Quite a few strings of eggs have appeared in here, I decided to track their
progress throughout the course of the week.

From tiny eggs, (and rather large reflected fingers).

The round eggs turned elliptical then                      “Yeah, go little dudes”!
evacuated the actual egg “tube”.


Feeding time on the remainder of the egg tube. The tiniest of tadpoles have grown the tiniest of tails and are now all huddled around the perimeter of the stock-tank. All this development in a week!
The way that top tadpole looks made me want to post an image of the monte python “fishy,fishy,fishy” sketch, but I found something even better, something real, this is only a little bit strange.

Now to the continuing saga of my new pathway…

With my Sweet Olive removed and re-planted into its new site
(vital signs…so-far-so-good), it was time for the dreaded bog
cyprus extraction. I only replanted this small tree last year from
my feeder pond, but oh how it’s root ball had grown.
If I had left this in here very much longer It would have been 
really hard to manually dig it out, and I do like to dig.
With a few disgruntled final groans and snaps, 
(from both the tree and myself), the tree finally gave it up,
and I heaved it out of its crater.

I dragged my new burden all the way
to my front yard (It was to heavy to lift it into
my wheelbarrow)…

and shunted the root ball into its new home, adjacent to my
“struggling” and now rotting mediterranean fan palm.
(I don’t want to talk about that). 
The cyprus has plenty of room to grow here, and no
overhead power lines to grow into. 
(The one in the picture is a long way away).

Back at the extraction site, my day laborers were hard at work.
The area required flattening, and these workers made short work of it,
armed with their brand new buckets and spades from target.

Here is the new cleared and leveled area. After watching the most recent episode of the Central Texas Gardener I have had a major re-think of this little patch of land. Rather than yet another pathway of decomposed granite, I am now considering using turffalo plugs to create a soft grassy area that apparently requires very little maintenance (apart from some hand weeding). This area is relatively small, so I don’t think this will be a major chore. Unlike buffalo grass, turffalo (Tech Grass) actually forms a dense turf that is apparently easily controllable. I think it will make for a nice, unexpected contrast to my other granite pathways, and create a soft area, (extremely rare in the ESP), to lounge and play on. It will also make for a good, “experiment”.

I would love to hear from anyone who has had
any experience with this grass, or any other
water sensitive turf suggestions.

Moving on…
Nierembergia hippomanica violacea Cupflower.        “Mmmmmm?”.
Have you ever seen so many blooms on one little plant?
This little plant never seems to stop blooming!
A  low maintenance plant, that puts on a dazzling display!
I am getting a couple more of these.

The name cup flower refers to the shape of the flowers, which is somewhat like an open-faced bowl. The plant comes in a few different colors and is supposed to be an annual…although this one is two years old now, and going strong.

Talking of blooming…

This Barbados Cherry is causing all sorts of problems
at the moment, and it is absolutely packed with flowers.
The shrub is full, and I mean full of bee imitating hover-flies.
It is like the bush has a built-in humming
sound to it.

Stroll past this bush and the hover-flies will swarm
“aggressively” around you, bluffing that they are
about to sting! I find them funny, but this pathway
has been blacklisted by others in the patch.
I have witnessed some really hilarious, contorted facial
expressions and unusual shoulder positions passing
this shrub as of late.

Other blooming oddities right now…(london accent)

I don’t recall ever seeing a bloom on a potato vine before,
perhaps I have just not looked close enough. Looks very
“morning gloryish”.

Crazy zipper sago palm growth.

A regal monsoon wedding, complete with poppy crowns and tons of red pomegranate confetti.

Bloom on a chive.

A tangled web of blooms on one of my mist flowers.

A daisy in waiting

Canna lily, pin-stripped fabric.

And a couple of painted canna blooms.

Translucent variegated succulent leaves, catching some rays.

Falling through the cattails.

And finally…

My day laborers letting off some steam.

Here we go round the circular bed,
The circular bed, the circular bed,
Here we go round the circular bed.
On a dull and breezy morning.

Stay Tuned For:
“Snail Harvesting”
All material © 2009 for east_side_patch. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.
Get well fast T.


~ by eastsidepatch on April 24, 2009.

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