Six on Saturday – 10-6-18

Last Saturday, I spent the day on the campus of Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, Texas. My son Cooper is a junior there, and Brad and I went down for Family Weekend. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this university, it is a beautiful campus in the middle of an urban setting. It consistently appears on lists of ‘the most beautiful college campuses in America’ – including those issued by Condé Nast Traveler and The Princeton Review. My photography cannot compare to that of the professionals. If this post piques your interest, perform a Google search and find truly spectacular images of this college campus.

From SMU, here are my Six on Saturday. Six things. In a garden. On a Saturday.


1. Hibiscus. The flower show over Family Weekend was perfectly timed. These hibiscus plants are strategically placed around campus, including around the ponies statue in the feature photo (above). The official mascot of SMU is a Mustang. On campus, they have a lively black stallion Shetland pony named Peruna. Throughout campus there are numerous references to horses, including the statue featured above.


The Boulevard

2. Trees. The trees on the SMU campus are plentiful and gorgeous. I love the intricate limbs on each. As a bonus picture, notice the football tailgating area. The Boulevard forms the main oval of campus and is lined with trees – mostly Southern Live Oaks.


3. Coleus. This spring, I purchased a couple of coleus plants for my front porch. I was not familiar with these plants, but I love the pop of color without flowers. I’ve been noticing coleus every since then – amazed at the varieties of solid colors, splashes, blotches, streaks, flecks, margins, and veins. The mature plants at SMU have foliage that is lush and full. I’ve discovered that it is an annual, and is described as very easy to grow from seed. I will be trying that next spring!


4. Planters. I love the natural appearance of these planters with the native grasses and ornamental sweet potato vines. It just proves that you don’t need to be manicured and exotic to make a statement.

white lantana

Perkins Chapel

5. White Lantana. After living in Arizona, I am accustomed to seeing the bright yellow, pink, and orange flowers of lantana. I have never seen white lantana, but I love it. The delicate flowers are perfect for a white hue. And I especially enjoyed seeing them around Perkins Chapel. In Seattle, Brad grew a white garden. I think seeing the white lantana may have motivated him to try that concept again in Oklahoma.

Crepe Myrtle

6. Crepe Myrtle. There are so many things to like about these trees/shrubs. Of course, the flowers are truly beautiful. Everyone I know in Oklahoma has their favorite color – pink, magenta, purple, lavender, white, or red. These plants grow well in our hot, humid summers. And then there is the bark and the overall structure. This one at SMU adds a pop of color to a fraternity house, but I really enjoy the look where many crepe myrtles are planted in a row and you can truly appreciate the trunks as well as the flowers.

Brad and Cooper

I love visiting Cooper at SMU – always an adventure to be had! And good BBQ, too! We enjoyed ours at the Katy Trail Ice House.

To see what other gardeners are featuring this week, check out the post and comment section in this link: Six on Saturday. Until next time …

6 thoughts on “Six on Saturday – 10-6-18

  1. I love hibiscus. I happen to be sipping hibiscus tea as I read blog posts! I have three Crepe Myrtle trees. I’d love to have more. They’ve been giving me trouble…white ashy leaves and another tree has rusty leaves. I need to find a cure! Lovely post. Thanks for sharing. 🙂


  2. Coleus are now listed under new names – Plectranthus and Solenostemon. They’re actually tender perennials and if you have somewhere warm and light you should be able to bring them through the colder months and get even larger plants the following year. Worth a try at least. Most varieties will flower when they’re happy but just snip the flowers off.


  3. Coleus are legendary in that region. They do not do that well even in Southern California. The prefer more humidity. Crepe/crape myrtles are something that I can not figure out. It seems like they should prefer the drier weather here, but they often get powdery milder badly. They always seem happier in humid climates instead.


  4. I loved that planter w/the grasses & ornamental sweet potato vine. Also really loved the lantana, too, but don’t relish lugging a planter inside during the winter. What a beautiful campus your son lives on. On my one visit to Texas, I didn’t see anything so lush.


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