Poppies are popping at Wildseed Farms

April 01, 2024

On my wildflower drive out to Willow City Loop last week, I stopped at Wildseed Farms in Fredericksburg, Texas, to check out their planted wildflower fields. The corn poppies were popping!

If lightning hadn’t been flashing and thunder rumbling, I’d have stayed longer to take more pics. But just then I got a call from my husband at home in Austin, telling me lightning had just struck a live oak in our yard — boom! — blasting a landscape light in the canopy out of the tree, lifting low-voltage wiring out of the ground and shredding its plastic coating, and blowing the transformer door off its hinge and slinging it 25 feet across the yard. There was no storm when it happened. The lightning just zapped down from a threatening sky. It seems to have traveled down the landscape lighting wiring and into the controller box and outlet on our house.

The power went out, one outlet in the house was sparking, and the wifi router and sprinkler system controller were blown. Everything else, including the tree, miraculously seems to be OK. Repairs are still underway, but we’re counting ourselves lucky. It didn’t hit the house directly, the tree was unscathed, and we are fine. It’s a good reminder not to fool around outside if you see lightning or hear thunder.

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Digging Deeper

April 6: Come out to Austin’s Mayfield Park on 4/6 for the Mayfield Park Gardening Symposium & Fundraiser, 8:30 to 11 am. This annual benefit for the park includes a raffle, plant sale, and garden speakers.

May 4: Explore “brilliant backyards, perfect pools and pergolas, and outdoor rooms and gardens” on the ATX Outdoor Living Tour on 5/4, 10 am to 3 pm. Landscape architects, designers, and builders will be on hand to answer questions. Tickets are $33.85 for adults, $17.85 for kids age 10-17.

May 11: Save the date for Austin Home’s Great Outdoors Tour on 5/11.

May 18: Pop up to Dallas for the 2024 DCMGA Garden Tour on 5/18 from 10 am to 5 pm. Tickets are $18 if purchased online prior to 6 pm on 5/17, or $22 after 6 pm on 5/17 or at the event. For a sneak peek, click here.

June 1-2: Take a self-guided, 2-day tour of ponds and gardens in and around Austin on the annual Austin Pond and Garden Tour, held 6/1 and 6/2, 9 am to 5 pm. Tickets are $20 to $25.

Come learn about gardening and design at Garden Spark! I organize in-person talks by inspiring designers, landscape architects, authors, and gardeners a few times a year in Austin. These are limited-attendance events that sell out quickly, so join the Garden Spark email list to be notified in advance; simply click this link and ask to be added. Season 8 kicks off in fall 2024. Stay tuned for more info!

All material © 2024 by Pam Penick for Digging. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited.

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