The Inside Austin Gardens Tour: the AgriLife Extension Demonstration Garden

The only public garden on the tour, the AgriLife Extension Demonstration Garden was created and is maintained by the Master Gardeners. It’s a space for experimentation and for the demonstration of various horticultural techniques. On display are several kinds of compost systems, vegetable beds featuring seasonal herb and vegetable varieties, squares of different turf types recommended for Central Texas, tough adapted roses, and plenty of flowers to appeal to butterflies, bees and other pollinators, as well as the occasional human.

Here’s a shot looking east from the vegetable garden. The shade structure on the left is still in the construction phase and will be part of a rainwater collection system.
demo garden wide shot

Here you can see the turf and vegetable beds. It’s quite a contrast with the starkly industrial neighborhood surrounding the garden!
demo garden veggie garden

On a rustic trellis along the sidewalk, rose ‘Red Cascade’ lived up to its name.
rose 'Red Cascade'

A sea of gomphrena against a backdrop of burgundy amaranth:

Shrimp plant, a great tough plant for shade, demonstrates how it got its common name:
shrimp plant

The exotic flowers of Passionflower cover a chain link fence between a sidewalk and parking area. In my experience, it tends to spread like crazy, so this is the perfect spot to keep it in bounds! This is the host plant for the gulf fritillary butterfly.

Also a hit with butterflies is Mexican Flame Vine.
mexican flame vine

Backlit by the late afternoon sun, it really did look like it was alight!
mexcian flame vine backlit

It was an ideal plant for butterfly camouflage. Perfect timing for the monarch migration!
butterfly camouflage

Also popular with the butterflies was native Gregg’s Mistflower.
butterfly on Gregg's Mistflower

Waterwise annual gomphrena was popular with skipperling moths:
moth on gomphrena

Down at the curb, tough native four-nerve daisies and a softleaf yucca add evergreen interest. You can see the Mexican Flame Vine in the background.
four nerve daisies and yucca

While the Demonstration Garden is free and open to the public, there will be Master Gardeners on hand to answer questions during the tour. Read more about the Demo Garden here and check out a photo gallery here.

The Inside Austin Gardens Tour is October 17th from 9 AM to 4 PM. Tickets are $20 for all 7 gardens or $5 per garden. You can also buy your ticket to all of the gardens for $19 here. More information can be found on the Inside Austin Gardens Tour website.

See you on tour day!

About The Gardener of Good & Evil

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1 Response to The Inside Austin Gardens Tour: the AgriLife Extension Demonstration Garden

  1. Wendy says:

    How have I never heard of a Mexican Flame vine?!? That’s gorgeous! Yay, another plant to add to my “want” list! 🙂

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