- 1.Austin Public Library and Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail
- 2.A Warm Welcome and a Literary Scoundrel: Pre-Fling Austin
- 3.On a Clear Day: The Hilltop Garden of Ruthie Burrus
Our conveniently provided garden notes had told us that Ruthie Burrus’s hilltop garden is a Certified Wildlife Habitat and Monarch Waystation with a spectacular view of downtown Austin, so before we got there I already expected to like it.
What I didn’t expect was the stunning way pollinators would be provided for. A sparkling mini-prairie / meadow covered the entire hillside along the drive all the way up to the house.
Hot hued wildflowers with cool blue agave — it’s a sight I’ve never seen in North Carolina. With its mix of annuals, perennials, and grasses, I bet there’s something interesting going on there year round. Quite the pollinator happy place, it was one of my favorites of the Fling, too…just hanging out with the butterflies in the sunshine-spangled flowers was pure joy.
I spent more time than I should have on the slope (and sleuthing out a couple of plant IDs) because I ran short of time for photos. Up top, besides the panoramic view, there is a stone garden haus, a children’s play area (with another great view), and a pool. There’s also an environmentally friendly rainwater collection system that allows for watering the garden without using treated city water, and a pizza oven that I’m sure makes for lots of fun times with family and friends.
The drama of the setting and the beautiful plantings make it a wonderful place to entertain which was one of the main goals of the homeowners. And…on a clear day, you can see forever and ever and ever more up there…or at least it seems so.
Click the photos below for larger pictures with captions.