I have been enjoying the weather very much this June.  Now for those of you who do not live in the desert, this is not a ‘normal’ statement.  June is a month that is spent indoors, hibernating with the air-conditioning and looking outside at the garden.

But, we have had a cooler then normal June so far.  Saturday’s temperature was 17 degrees below normal.  I was looking forward to this day because I had planned to spend time pruning and weeding.  As I worked outside, the breeze felt cool…..again, NOT normal for this time of year.

Today, the temperatures are about normal for this time of year and I did venture outside to get some work done in my vegetable garden, but once the clock hits 10:00, I tend to go back inside.

Even though it is hot outside in June, there is a riot of color in the garden.  This is normal for this time of year.  So, many desert residents spend their time indoors, viewing the beauty of their gardens through the windows 🙂

 This is my first time growing sunflowers.
They look so pretty in my vegetable garden.

My Bougainvillea is absolutely glorious this time of year.

Pink Bower Vine lines the front entry to my house.
They thrive in the afternoon sun.
Gold Lantana also lines the walk up to my front entry.
I love their bright blooms.
Warm summer temperatures are perfect for my Texas Sage shrubs.
Their purple blooms will come and go through the fall months.
Orange Jubilee takes center stage in my side yard.  
I love the lush green foliage, but the flowers are my favorite part.
A relative of Orange Jubilee, is my Yellow Bells shrub. 
 It is covered in yellow blossoms, which brighten an otherwise boring expanse of a brick wall.
My last submission, Radiation Lantana.
Blooms appear March through November…..I am so blessed!
Please visit May Dream Gardens for more GBBD posts.  I love seeing what is blooming around the world.
On another note, life since my son’s surgery has been busier then usual.  Whereas I used to blog 6 times a week, I now feel accomplished if I write 3.  But, I don’t feel too badly about it.  I am enjoying my time with my son, who is wheelchair bound for at least 3 more weeks.
We play cards, watch movies, read books together.  He also has fun playing with his army men, Wii, his Legos and reading books on his own.  We suffered a little bit of a setback yesterday.  Kai was signed up for our church’s Vacation Bible School this week and my husband went with him to help out.  Unfortunately, there was too much physical activity that Kai could not participate in and he was often left on the sidelines.  He hip was also bothering him with the extra activities that he could participate in, so we spoke to him and agreed to not continue with VBS this year.   
The great news is that Kai will start physical therapy in 3 weeks, which means that he can start putting weight on his leg 🙂  Right now though, we are busy keeping him happy when all he can do is sit and lie down.
I am so thankful for the comments that I continue to receive.  I apologize that I have not had the time to respond as much as I would like too.  But, I am trying my best to carve out a little time each day to visit all of you and leave a little note 🙂

Noelle Johnson, aka, 'AZ Plant Lady' is a horticulturist, certified arborist, and landscape consultant who helps people learn how to create, grow, and maintain beautiful desert gardens that thrive in a hot, dry climate. She does this through her consulting services, her online class Desert Gardening 101, and her monthly membership club, Through the Garden Gate. As she likes to tell desert-dwellers, "Gardening in the desert isn't hard, but it is different."

28 replies
  1. Terra
    Terra says:

    I am happy for you that the temperatures are so moderate this week, which is conducive to being in the garden.
    It sounds like your son is recovering well, praise Jesus.
    I appreciate how you tell us what each flower in each photo is.

    Reply
  2. Rosie@leavesnbloom
    Rosie@leavesnbloom says:

    Beautiful blooms Noelle and such lovely photos too – whoever named the lantana radiation gave it such an appropriate name don't you think. As I type this its just after 9 pm with a temperature outside of 59 degrees.

    I don't know how you managed blogging 6 times a week – I too feel acomplished if I can do it 3 times a week.

    Sorry to hear about Kai's setback – I'm sure he was disappointed but there's always next year. He'll be looking forward to his physio starting as he's well on the road to recovery once that starts though I'm sure that physio will be quite tough at the start.

    🙂 Rosie

    Reply
  3. Nicole
    Nicole says:

    All those blooms look rich and luscious-and we share all the plants pictured except the Pink Bower Vine. Glad to hear Kai is recovering well.

    Reply
  4. Susan in the Pink Hat
    Susan in the Pink Hat says:

    It has been much cooler here too. The mountains are unusually green for this time of year and I've not been watering my mesic flower beds. I'm actually worried about some of my xeric plants getting root rot. It's like I'm back east again.

    Reply
  5. Floridagirl
    Floridagirl says:

    98 degrees here in the valley today; 97 yesterday. Indexes in the 100's. The little pockets of rain over CFla seem to be skipping all around us, teasing unmercifully. I imagine, though, this heat would seem cool to Arizonians. ; )

    Love your hot, tropical blooms! You really can't beat a bougainvillea, can you? That tecoma is pretty eye-popping as well.

    Reply
  6. Curbstone Valley Farm
    Curbstone Valley Farm says:

    It's unfortunate that Kai had to give up VBS, but the next three weeks hopefully will go by quickly, and he'll be more mobile soon. At least for now he has some lovely sunflowers in the vegetable gardens to enjoy. The pink bower vine was one of my favorites at our last house. It really seems to take the heat well, and makes for beautiful green trellis cover all year, even when it's not in bloom.

    Reply
  7. Patchwork
    Patchwork says:

    Sorry about Kai at VBS. There will be more of them to come, though. Hope the therapy goes smoothly.

    Your blooms are beautiful.

    I can relate to the heat. Summer has set in here, already.

    Stay cool…have fun with your son.

    ~~Linda…

    Reply
  8. Amy
    Amy says:

    A cooler than normal June: what a gift! At least for those of us with hot summers. Beautiful, vibrant blooms, as always. And hope you have some great card games and delve into some good summer reads with your son.

    Reply
  9. jeansgarden
    jeansgarden says:

    The definition of "ungodly hot" here is 90F. That should give you a laugh. I would find it frustrating to have all those beautiful flowers in bloom and not be able to spend time outside enjoying them. Do you plan your garden to maximize what you see from the inside? -Jean

    Reply
  10. Ami
    Ami says:

    I wish we can borrow some of your coolness here in south florida… Great news about Kai's recovery. Best wishes for his continuous recovery and the physical therapy!

    Your flowers all look lovely. My lantanas don't look very well in my garden, and I think the humidity did something to them. Love the Orange Jubilee tree!

    Reply
  11. Balisha
    Balisha says:

    Hang in there Mom. Three weeks will soon be over and he can start therapy. I'll be anxious to hear what they do and the progress he makes. I'm sorry to hear that VBS didn't work out for him. Have a great day.
    Balisha

    Reply
  12. Autumn Belle
    Autumn Belle says:

    Your garden is so striking with vivid blooms now. Noelle, I am glad to hear that Kai is on the road to recovery now. It must have been emotionally and physically draining for the whole family. I really admire your strenght and preseverence in giving the best for your children. I certainly have a lot to learn from you. You are truly a great mother!

    Reply
  13. Darla
    Darla says:

    Investing time in your son is more important right not Noelle. Your flowers are wonderful bright colors to go along with the hot June month!

    Reply
  14. Carol
    Carol says:

    Lovely blooms Noelle! I love sunflowers too… the rabbits will not let me have them! You just keep taking time with you little guy! May his recovery continue well and hope the PT goes well. ;<)

    Reply
  15. islandgal246
    islandgal246 says:

    Hello Noelle,
    am playing catch up with your activities in and out of the garden. I am fascinated with your sunflowers and have never grown them. I do have some seeds in the refrigerator. You have inspired me to do something. The rains have started but it is still very hot. I go into the garden very early in the morning and later in the evening. Every one is experiencing not normal weather this year. Take care and I hope that your son makes a speedy recovery. I also enjoyed your jam making session with your mum and daughter.

    Reply
  16. pamsenglishgarden
    pamsenglishgarden says:

    Dear Noelle, Your blooms are so very colorful and cheery, especially that sunflower! I am glad the weather is allowing you to enjoy them outside on some days. Healing prayers continue for Kai. Pam x

    Reply
  17. Kathleen
    Kathleen says:

    That sunflower photo is fantastic Noelle. I'm glad the weather is working in your favor ~ it sure is strange this year.
    I just saw a pink Bower vine for sale in our nursery but I passed it by because I knew it was another plant I'd have to haul indoors for the winter. It's so beautiful and perfect in your garden. Maybe someday I'll live where I can have these tropical beauties.
    So glad your son continues to heal from his surgery. No worries on the blogging ~ you'll never regret spending your time with him.

    Reply
  18. gippslandgardener
    gippslandgardener says:

    I feel like I haven't popped in for ages Noelle – sorry 🙁
    That sunflower is a stunner! I'm looking forward to growing some more in summer. It is fantastic to see the crimson rosellas hanging upside down to eat the dried seeds.
    I'm glad to hear that Kai is moving on to the next stage of his recovery in the not-to-distant future and I hope that things are not too frustrating for him in the meantime.

    Reply
  19. Pam/Digging
    Pam/Digging says:

    We in Austin do a lot of admiring the garden through the windows at this time of year too, Noelle.

    Good luck to your son on his recovery. I'm glad to hear he's going to be out of the wheelchair soon.

    Reply
  20. Becca
    Becca says:

    Hi Noelle, I'm Becca, and I just discovered your blog. I am a native of Las Vegas, and struggle with gardening, so I will look to your blog for advise! You are right about planting for the desert. I do love hydrangeas so, and took one home and planted it in the shade, and well it just wasn't happy, so I decided it just wasn't meant to be. I do believe the AZ desert is more beautiful and gets more rain than here in LV don't you agree? Anyway, love your blog.

    Reply
  21. Rose
    Rose says:

    When I talked to my daughter on the phone last week, I discovered that it was cooler in Phoenix than here in the Midwest! And without our humidity, it must be relatively comfortable where you are.

    Such gorgeous, vibrant colors, Noelle! I love lantana–I have visions of mine eventually looking as lush as yours, but it has a long way to go.

    Glad to hear that Kai won't have to be in a wheelchair much longer. He's been quite a trooper to go through all of this.

    Reply
  22. Rose Sterling
    Rose Sterling says:

    Oh. I really envy you! I love those flowers. Honestly, I just started gardening last month and i haven't seen any of my plants bloom like that. but I think it would someday. Thanks for this inspiring post of yours.

    Reply

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