A painting that captures my heart

August 12th, 2010 Posted in cats

It’s not every day of the week that you get a painting made just for you. In my case, it’s the very first time!

Society Garlic painting

The artist is Iris, who blogs at Society Garlic. When I ran into her one day, I discovered that along with professional writing, gardening, and yummer-bear recipes, she’s a painter! Her cachet is pets on a chair. She’s donated paintings to fund-raising auctions to support the Green Corn Project, and this one to the Humane Society.

Garlic Society painting to Humane Society

I just had to ask:  Can you represent my little family with a cat, dog, and BUNNY on a chair? Iris knew just how to get into their little brains to capture everyone’s diverse personalities.

Garlic Society painting cat on a chair

Cats: “Who are you again?”

Garlic Society painting bunny on a chair

Bunnies: “Time to change the alarm code; someone keeps getting in.”

Garlic Society painting dog on a chair

Dog: “I just want to give everyone a kiss.”

Down the road, when wayward puffs of fur no longer challenge my broom, we’ll remember when we were Mom & Dad to rescued cats, dog, and bunnies, usually in charge of our chairs!

Iris, who includes bluebells in her garden, would love this one (Eustoma exaltum ssp. russellianum) that I spotted at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Bluebells Eustoma exaltum ssp. russellianum

Her luscious one  is Lisianthus ‘Mariachi Blue.’  Must have it!

Lisianthus ‘Mariachi Blue’

At  nurseries, you can pick up these hybrids. Here’s some info from the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center:

In Japan, this plant is known as Lisianthus, an older name for the Eustoma genus. It has been developed in pink, white, and deep purple blue color varieties with both single and doubled petaled flowers.

Bluebells can be tricky to grow, whether native or hybrid, but if they find the right spot, they are worth a try.

Another one that’s tricky for me is Rudbeckia. I gave up on them years ago.  I love them, but they rotted fast in my garden. Then, I walked out one morning and spotted this in the crape bed.


No clue how it got there, but I’ll take it! I’ve learned significant life lessons from the garden and pets: respect, wrangle, and jump for joy when you run into great surprises.

For KLRU viewers, tune in Saturday night at 8 p.m. for our Brit com evening, with some of your favorites, plus the premiere of After You’ve Gone. This one takes a poignant, witty  spin on family relationships when mom moves out and mother-in-law moves in. I think some fur will be flying!

Until next week, Linda

  1. 13 Responses to “A painting that captures my heart”

  2. By Iris/Society Garlic, Austin on Aug 12, 2010

    Wow, Linda–thank you so much! I enjoyed doing your painting, and I love your animals’ comments in this post. Nice to hear that Lisianthus can be tricky because mine don’t look too happy at the moment. Still love them, though.


    Linda reply on August 12th, 2010 4:57 pm:

    Thank YOU! And Andrea at the Wildflower Center says that eustomas are extremely tricky. They plant bunches to get a few happy ones. Gardeners can’t always plant bunches, but I hope your darling makes it through summer.


  3. By renee (renee's roots) on Aug 12, 2010

    Linda, what a cool piece of art! Definitely proof that gardeners are artists. I think it’s time for an exhibit of work by Austin garden bloggers….photos, yard art, paintings, etc.


    Linda reply on August 13th, 2010 3:58 pm:

    Oh yes, I agree!


  4. By Tom on Aug 13, 2010

    Linda, We planted Rudbeckia gloriosa starts in a 3 x 6 patch in late February in well prepared soil in full sun and 40ft from the house and what a nice long show of gold we got for June and July! They made nice cut flowers too. Will try to repeat with seeds.

    We had a little gardening fun with our lotus that grew out of its pot and took over the pond this summer. A little front yard pond full of big white lotus blooms will stop traffic. Looks nice with the big cardinal red Texas Star hibiscus flowers close by.

    And thanks for the blue bell pics for my collection and mentioning Andrea’s comment -ours were lying down with an unattractive habit for the spot they were in so I gave up on them before bloom — will have to try again.

    Sorry to be a bit wordy, but I figure in August it’s OK to be more words than action.


    Linda reply on August 13th, 2010 3:56 pm:

    I love that! Indeed, August is a time of inaction outside. Well, I will certainly try your rudbeckia ideas. I love them.


  5. By Annie in Austin on Aug 14, 2010

    Cool paintings and cool Lisianthus photos, Linda! It’s fun to see what happens when a talented artist like Iris has subjects with so much personality. Something in many-years-ago Picture Lady experiences is whispering Matisse?

    Too bad the beautifully colored Lisianthus are so hard to grow… if the Wildflower Center has to plant bunches they’ll never make it in my garden.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose


  6. By Marilyn Kircus on Aug 16, 2010

    I think you can easily grow Rubeckia if you give them full sun and drainage. I added some decomposed gravel to my deep clay soil to make it a good place to grow plants that like good drainage. All of them seem to be doing fine.

    And you might also want to check the soil around a good stand of bluebells. You might even have to do a soil test to find out what it in and compare it to yours. I haven’t tried bluebells yet but I found fields of them growing near Independence, TX, on the road you would take to get to the Rose Emporium there.


    Linda reply on August 16th, 2010 5:05 pm:

    Marilyn, thank you! I’ve become a fan of decomposed granite & will add it to areas for rudbeckia.

    Wow that you mentioned Independence. My husband was the audio engineer at the Round Top summer concert records for many years. He showed me a huge stand of the bluebells in a field near Independence. He still talks about how glorious they were. And those were out in full baking sun with no water! They were amazing! Thanks for checking in!


  7. By Kathleen Scott on Aug 17, 2010

    I love Iris’s paintings–so glad you posted them for all to see.

    And I love lisianthus too. I had a bird-planted Seaside Gentian in Florida which seeded in time to a rushing river of lisianthus similar to Iris’s photo that bloomed for a month.


  8. By ESP on Aug 17, 2010

    Ooo…Brit Night! You know I will be watching those shows!
    “Tally Ho Ginger”!


  9. By Michele on Aug 18, 2010

    OH, isn’t Iris the BEST!? What a Renaissance woman she is. I love Renee’s idea to have a garden bloggers art show!


  10. By Jenny on Aug 18, 2010

    I love iris’ paintings. What talent. I am always amazed to see Texas bluebells, they look really unTexan don’t they? Somehow I don’t think they would like my rocky soils. Maybe they would do better off the escarpment. Rudbeckias, yes, but they do better in the early summer.


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