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The left fence border


Houston left fence border April 2020
Left fence border in April 2020, dominated by our huisache tree

Along most of the length of the fence between our home and the neighbors to our left runs our unimaginatively named left fence border. The border completes (or starts, depending on your point of view) the line of garden that separates our ugly bermudagrass lawn from the functional fence that hems us in. The line separating the border from the yard swerves around a bit, giving the plantable area a maximum depth of about seven feet at the point where we planted our Texas persimmon, and down to about three feet at the narrowest. I'm sure that line will change through the years, as my plant lust gets the better of me and I need more space. But for now, there's plenty of room. Virginia pine

The border will eventually be defined primarily by its trees. We planted several, all still fairly small. Way on the left, in the lawn well beyond the actual border even, is a Virginia pine that we purchased as a winter house plant. It should do OK here, so I gave it a home outside when it had served its purpose indoors. It is quite small, and does not seem inclined to grow very fast, which is fine by me – its mature size is almost certainly too large for the space it's in. Exbucklandia populnea

Next in line to the right, in the lawn area just outside of the border, is an Exbucklandia populnea, an Asian tree we bought on a whim as a small specimen, enchanted by its duck's-foot leaves. It too will grow too large for its allotted space (we didn't realize its mature size until we returned home from the nursery). I'll deal with that as it comes. Hercules club

Continuing along the line, there's a Hercules club, a thorny native with wildlife benefits, and also a sizeable tree at maturity; followed by a showy senna (also a butterfly benefactor). Texas persimmon

The middle of the border is reserved for the Texas persimmon, a small tree that I admired when visiting Mercer Arboretum in Houston and tracked down at a local native nursery. It should eventually produce fruit, but again is probably of more value to wildlife than to human palates. huisache

Further to the right follows a huisache, a ferny-leaved small acacia tree that should give us yellow puffballs to admire in early spring. fig tree The border is rounded out by two fig trees in the back corner that were among the earliest plantings in our brand-new garden. The Celeste and Brown Turkey varieties haven't given us much fruit to snack on yet, but this is their year of getting established; we're counting on a better harvest next year.

In between all these trees and shrubs is a small assortment of herbaceous plants – several salvias, a blue butterfly clerodendrum, and a few miscelleneous plants I'm growing on from cuttings. It should achieve a bit more of a full look by mid-2018.

Currently growing in our left fence border

Acacia farnesiana (huisache; sweet acacia)
Agave gracilipes (slimfoot century plant)
Agave ovatifolia (whale's tongue agave)
Anisacanthus quadrifidus var. wrightii (flame acanthus,hummingbird bush, Wright’s desert honeysuckle)
Argemone mexicana (Mexican prickly poppy)
Asclepias curassavica (tropical milkweed; bloodflower)
Baptisia alba (white false indigo)
Bougainvillea spectabilis (paper flower)
Calliandra emarginata (dwarf red powderpuff)
Chamaecrista fasciculata (partridge pea)
Combretum indicum (Rangoon creeper; Chinese honeysuckle)
Coreopsis lanceolata (lance-leaf tickseed)
Cuphea viscosissima (blue waxweed)
Dasylirion wheeleri (sotol; desert spoon)
Diospyros texana (Texas persimmon; black persimmon)
Echeandia texensis 'Loma del Potrero Cercado' (Texas crag lily)
Eucalyptus cinerea (silver dollar eucalyptus; argyle apple)
Ficus carica (fig)
Freesia laxa 'Joan Evans'
Habranthus tubispathus (copper lily)
Hesperaloe parviflora (red yucca)
Hesperoxiphion peruvianum
Hippeastrum hybrids (amaryllis)
Lagerstroemia 'Midnight Magic' ('PIILAG-V') (crape myrtle)
Leucophyllum frutescens 'Greado' (Texas sage; cenizo)
Lilium formosanum (formosa lily)
Liriope muscari (lilyturf)
Malvaviscus x 'Big Momma' (Turk's cap; wax mallow)
Manfreda maculosa (deciduous agave)
Mesembryanthemum cordifolium (heart-leaf ice plant; baby sun rose)
Muehlenbeckia axillaris (creeping wire vine)
Nolina texana (bear grass, sacahuista)
Odontonema strictum (firespike)
Osmanthus fragrans f. aurantiacus 'Apricot Echo' (sweet olive)
Oxalis brasiliensis (Brazilian oxalis)
Pelargonium quercetorum
Plumbago auriculata (plumbago)
Rosa 'Speedy Gonzalez' (climbing rose)
Rotheca myricoides (blue butterfly)
Ruellia elegans (red ruellia; false petunia)
Salvia coccinea (scarlet sage)
Salvia penstemonoides (big red sage)
Salvia roemeriana (cedar sage)
Salvia texana (Texas sage)
Salvia uliginosa (bog sage)
Scutellaria suffrutescens (pink skullcap)
Senecio candicans 'Angel Wings'
Senna splendida (showy senna; golden wonder)
Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain laurel)
Tetramerium sp.
Viguiera stenoloba (skeleton-leaf goldeneye; resinbush)
Watsonia borbonica 'Bedazzled' and 'Cherry Splash' (bugle lily)
Yucca cernua (nodding Texas soapwort)
Yucca elata (soap tree)
Zamia integrifolia (coontie, Florida arrowroot)
Zanthoxylum clava-herculis (Hercules club; southern prickly ash)
Zephyranthes citrina (rain lily)
Zephyranthes drummondii (rain lily; giant prairie lily)
Zephyranthes sp. from Tamaulipas (rain lily)

Currently growing in the left fence nursery area - zone A

Babiana tubiflora
Barnardia japonica (squill)
Dierama trichorhizum (fairy wand)
Eryngium agavifolium (agave-leaved sea holly)
Erythrina bidwillii (coral bean)
Eucomis autumnalis (pineapple lily)
Habranthus tubispathus (copper lily)
Lilium regale 'Album' (royal lily; regal lily)
Zephyranthes 'Capricorn' (rain lily)

Currently growing in the left fence nursery area - zone B

Agave lechuguilla (lechuguilla; tula ixtle)
Agave lophantha (hardy century plant)
Agave polianthiflora (tuberose-flowered agave)
Agave x parryantha
Aloinopsis/nananthus hybrids (living stone)
Asphodeline lutea (Jacob's rod)
Asphodelus cerasiferus
Dasylirion wheeleri (sotol; desert spoon)
Delosperma sutherlandii (ice plant)
Eriophyllum lanatum (woolly sunflower, Oregon sunshine)
Habranthus gracilifolius (rain lily)
Kniphofia ensifolia (torch lily)
Manfreda undulata 'Cherry Chocolate Chip'
Penstemon pinifolius (pine-leaf penstemon)
Physaria arizonica (Arizona bladderpod)
Zephyranthes dichromantha (rain lily)
Zephyranthes macrosiphon (pink rain lily)

Currently growing in the left fence nursery area - zone C

Agave x amourifolia (century plant)
Asphodeline lutea (Jacob's rod)
Cassia nemophila (desert cassia)
Eriophyllum lanatum (woolly sunflower, Oregon sunshine)
Hesperantha huttonii
Hesperoyucca whipplei (chaparral yucca)
Kniphofia hirsuta (torch lily; red hot poker)
Salvia microphylla 'Hot Lips' (ornamental sage)
Scilla peruviana (giant squill)
Yucca baccata (banana yucca; Spanish bayonet)
Zephyranthes primulina (rain lily)

Currently growing in the left fence nursery area - zone D

Currently growing in the front fence nursery area - zone A

Gladiolus carneus
Hesperoxiphion peruvianum
Manfreda maculosa (deciduous agave)
Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain laurel)

Currently growing in the front fence nursery area - zone B

Alstroemeria ligtu (Peruvian lily)
Antirrhinum hispanicum (Spanish snapdragon)
Bauhinia lunarioides (Anacacho orchid)
Codonopsis lanceolata (bonnet bellflower)
Dierama trichorhizum (fairy wand)
Duranta erecta (golden dewdrop, pigeonberry)
Gloriosa modesta
Habranthus gracilifolius (rain lily)
Lilium regale 'Album' (royal lily; regal lily)
Nolina texana (bear grass, sacahuista)
Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain laurel)
Watsonia vanderspuyae
Zephyranthes drummondii (rain lily; giant prairie lily)

Currently growing in the front fence nursery area - zone C

Eucomis autumnalis (pineapple lily)
Freesia laxa 'Joan Evans'
Gladiolus tristis (sword lilyl; marsh Afrikaner)
Habranthus tubispathus (copper lily)

Some older photos of this area

The photos below were taken in November 2017, shortly after digging the new border and installing its first plant citizens.

Houston left fence border Nov 2017 Houston left fence border Nov 2017

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Last modified: April 08, 2020
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