Sunday, July 01, 2007

McAllen, Texas - Plants in the Valley

In May I spent some time in McAllen, TX with my sister -- she's been there for several years but this was my first visit. I've been to Texas many times but never to this part of the state. McAllen is right on the border with Mexico, further south than Corpus Christie, and for some reason I was expecting it to be desert, sage-brush country, something like Amarillo. Instead, I found it very flat -- reminiscent of the part of the midwest where I grew up, in that respect -- but the plant life is actually sub-tropical. It wasn't all that different from Orlando, which really surprised me.

My sister lives across from a gated estate that is beautifully landscaped. One of the residents of the estate, Mr. Larry (that's his last name, I'm not sure I've spelled it correctly), gave my sister and me a guided tour of the estate and several people let me take pictures. I'm posting a selection of them, including one of my sister and Mr. Larry.

It was hot as blazes when we went on the tour, at least in the mid-90s. But I enjoyed every minute of our tour, and it was fascinating to see all the tropical plants that have survived there (especially knowing that they've had a couple of harsh winters in recent years).