The fountains above are in front of the convention center in San Jose, a charming big-bucks Silicon Valley town that has sunk a lot of money into civic beautification. It was a pleasure to walk around and take it all in, and the downtown area had loads of lovely restaurants in which to spend my per diem.
My fellow co-workers and I had a great meal in this Italian restaurant but what really caught my eye was this smoke tree that I spotted in the back courtyard when I went out to sneak a cigarette in the parking lot.
I've seen one or two of these at home but this one really did look "smoky." Actually that is a puff of grey smoke in the top right corner. Never try to smoke and take pictures at the same time, though the theme was right.
Back at home, I found the Ernest Markham clematis blooming away near the front porch. Ernest isn't fond of growing up the chicken wire on the post and prefers to sprawl in the foliage below. I really need to get out there and tidy him up.
But all of these guys below are waiting to be put into pots on the terrace, so first things first. Last weekend, after I'd gotten home from San Jose and before I started falling down, I had a glorious two days to garden. But since I'm so far behind it was spent mostly on weeding, mowing, and exhaustion later.
While we've had abundant rain, the temps fell too. For the past two nights I've moved my fuschia basket into the garage to keep it safe from the high 30's it's fallen to overnight. But after this weekend I'm no longer pampering anything, after all, it's high time for warm nights.