After a long hot summer for my hibiscus plant, which did not almost die this year (unlike last year) because it got watered and sprayed everyday, the first bloom in a few months occurred on November 1.
Another one appeared on November 3 and now it has several buds. It should do well until it freezes and then I’ll cover it but it might not have flowers until the temperatures are more moderate in early spring.
The gazanias also didn’t bloom for a couple of months even though they are heat and drought tolerant but they’re blossoming again.
Petunias do well in the fall here.
This purple sage is in our neighbor’s yard.
And, of course, cool fall temperatures make the outdoor cats happy although some need to snuggle into their beds at night to keep warm. Here’s an autumn update on them. You will see that most of them have a tipped ear to indicate they’ve been spayed/neutered. We have worked hard to get them all fixed. Two don’t have tipped ears and that is because the vets forgot to tip their ears when they fixed them :(
Svengali is a very social cat, loves to get attention from visitors. He has somewhat taken over the role of WB, our late outdoor cat, as “uncle” to the other outdoor cats although a couple still find him a little scary.
These are the triplets, below: Ebony, Ivory, and Edie. Ebony and Ivory are pretty tame, can be petted, and picked up, but Edie is still feral after 4.5 years of living here and being fed by us.
Ebony is very sweet and loves Tony to brush him. I don’t think the mosquito bit him.
Ivory is sassy with an attitude.
Edie is shy and loves to hang out on the roof.
Then there are the little girls, the two sisters, Stripey and Grady. They had the same mom as the triplets (the late Isabella). They are 2.5 years old now.
Stripey is napping in the warm leaves on a cool afternoon.
Grady loves to hang out in the silk oak tree and watch the hummingbirds.
The stepsisters spend most of their time in the alley and come here to eat and snack:
Jessi has been with us for over 5 years. She doesn’t really care for Svengali much but she’s very sweet and tame.
Smokey looks a lot like Grady (one has a right-tipped ear and the other left-tipped) and she’s totally feral although we’ve been feeding her for 4.5 years when she showed up as an older kitten. We assume they have the same father, a big tom we call Balzac, who is the only un-neutered cat around. We don’t know if he has a home but he’s a big guy and, annoyingly, picks fights sometimes. Fortunately, he’s not around all the time.
And, last but not least, is Winky, the last cat we had fixed a couple of months ago. Unfortunately, even though she has been around for months and showed up skinny and scruffy, she had already been spayed so she got to have a second surgery for nothing. She’s fine now, though, and her ear got tipped this time. This is right after it was done so it looks less raggedy now.
Winky looks a lot like Ebony but we don’t think they’re closely related. Winky can be petted but doesn’t like it much and does not like to be picked up. We can’t brush her so she still looks a little scruffy.
Mookie was a cat who was in our neighborhood for a long time. We think he first belonged to an elderly woman who died a few years ago and who had several cats. Some were taken to the Humane Society and some escaped. Our other neighbors adopted Mookie but he also ate at our house quite often, especially for the last few months. He disappeared a few weeks ago and we looked for him around the neighborhood. Yet another neighbor found him and took care of him but he was very ill and had to be put to sleep a couple weeks ago. He was a very sweet cat, too.
A couple other cats, Romeo, a neighbor’s cat, Crybaby, another neighbor’s cat, and the previously-mentioned Balzac, also drop in for meals frequently.