Sunday, May 17, 2009

Taking Time to Smell the Flowers...

For a country that is bland and blah - taupe, gray - sand and dust - credit must be given where it is due - to the many, many imported laborers who work as groundsmen and gardeners, here on our compound, to keep it green and colorful.

I did not do well with the camera to get the flowers on these trees. For a couple of weeks now, we've seen the flowers that have fallen off them on the ground and it was only just a few days ago I realized they were coming from the tip-top of these trees. Why? Because the gardeners spend so much time shaping the trees, but can only reach so high with their ladders - so only the very tops of the trees have the blooms [cannot tell you what kind of tree it is - do not know]:

No idea what the name of this tree is, either. This is the one in our back yard - in a pot - perhaps it should be in the ground. I suspect it is going to get big. Really, really big. We have one "clump" of white flowers on it. They smell "clean." A soapy kind of clean - or maybe more like citronella. The tree is strange. It loses every single leaf it has when it starts to get cold [relative term, I know] and then completely comes back to life in the spring with new green leaves - glossy and waxy - and now, big clumps of flowers.

This is the same kind of tree - what our little tree is going to grow up to be:

Every single day we walk by this hibiscus. And I say, "Will you look at that! How come that hibiscus has so many flowers on it - and more buds - and ours only has a couple of buds and every once in a while a bloom?" DH has gotten so that he mimics me when we walk past this bush in the morning as we are out and about with The Kids:

Hibiscus has no smell - and is nothing I would even give much thought to if it wasn't for the pop of color it generates. Not particularly gorgeous, but striking in a sea of green and tan and beige and gray and taupe.

I would never in a million years put orange and fuchsia bougainvillea together - but I think this just looks so pretty - makes my white bougainvillea look pretty bland - thankfully I've put some color into mine with the the blue purple jacquemontia to give it some color - along with the camel foot. Simply beautiful:

And, this, yellow lantana. We have pink. I do like the yellow. From what I understand, lantana is very slow growing. I'm not even going to bother putting more in. I'll just have to live with the pink we have.

More yellow... The cactus we walk by every morning. For two weeks I've been saying, "Take a picture of that cactus!" Finally:

Flowers - the flora - we see every day on our morning walks. Sharing. Sometimes I'm good that way.


  1. Your mystery tree with the white flowers is Frangipangi (not spelled right, but that's how it sounds)

    I think it smells a little like Twinkies and Lemon.

  2. How lovely. Thank you for sharing:-)
    We have some pretty gorgeous blooms going on here now, too, especially after 2 days of rain last week. The roses are just simply beautiful. And I have these viney, almost like morning glories, flowers that are so cool. The blooms are yellow, orange and white and appear to come from the same vine.

  3. Thanks, Suburban. I'll check it out, now that I know where to start. Twinkies and lemons. Perfect! I said citronella, but I'm stealing "Twinkies and lemons" from here on out.

  4. Linda - Can you do me a favor, please? E-mail me. Sabrasstilettos @ yahoo dot com. Want to ask you a favor.

  5. Thanks for sharing the lovely photos; it's nice to see something from the Sandbox that doesn't require "advanced warning." :>) You're right about the laborers--worth every penny. Hopefully, they're among the workers who receive their pay.

  6. I have lots of Frangipani trees in my garden. They are very common in Australia.

    As is lantana. Which grows quickly. Very quickly. Extremely quickly. In northern australia it is illegal to have lantana because it tends to go wild and take over entire farms. As a youngster I had to clear quite a lot of land by hand, the only way to kill lantana is to cut the stalks near the ground and pour poison directly into it.

  7. Interesting about the lantana, doctorpat. Doesn't seem to grow quickly here, at all. My is the same size now as it was two years ago! Too much heat, here? And, when I was working at the Garden Center on our compound I was told by the Garden Guru that it is one of the slower plants to get going, here. Perhaps I will buy a yellow one and see how it does and see how fast it grows...

  8. Wow, grass and trees! I had no idea there was so much vegetation in that region. You must spend a fortune on water. Do you have a natural source, or is all fresh water from de-salinators?

    It all looks great!

  9. Most of the water used to keep things green here is "reconstituted." NOT safe for drinking. [Water processed from sewer. Keeps things really, really green!] The only tap we have in the house that is drinking water is called the "sweet water tap," even thought the water we bathe in and wash clothes in is desalinated - it isn't. You cannot drink it. Does a number on your hair and skin - and clothes, as well. You can taste the salt in it.

  10. FYI frangipani and lantana are both poisonous.
    Question Sabra -- your pictures look very familiar, and perhaps it is simply because alot of KSA compounds look the same, but are you in Dhahran? I grew up there =)

  11. Michele - Thank you for the excellent information. Did not know they were poisonous, too. I know the camel foot is. Don't think it is the frangipani that The Boy got in, when he had some sort of reaction a couple of months ago, but who knows... There is camel foot out back. If it happens again - the camel foot and the frangipani are gone. The lantana is on the side of the house - The Kids are never out there. Yes. We're in Dhahran. Where'd you live, here?


Site Meter