One Texas* bush that likes to bloom in the summer heat is cenizo**, Leucophyllum frutescens. It’s native primarily in parts of the state to the west and south of Austin, but many people here plant it because of its dense and bright flowers, of which there are usually several sets each year.
I photographed this cenizo yesterday morning on Watering Rock Lane in my Great Hills neighborhood of Austin. The density of cenizo flowers is inversely proportional to their duration, which is a fancy way of saying that these profuse blossoms don’t last long. Many of the ones in this photograph will likely have fallen to the ground by the end of the day today.
* The only state in the United States where this species grows is Texas. The bush’s habitat also includes, not surprisingly, parts of Mexico.
** Cenizo, pronounced seh-nee-so, is Spanish. It’s based on the word for ‘ash’ because the bush’s leaves are such an ash-grey shade of green.
© 2015 Steven Schwartzman