Showing posts with label gardening. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gardening. Show all posts

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Flowers Now and To Come


This week has been one of delight when it comes to flowers.

One of the Mama's orchids has a blossom. I only noticed the flower over the past weekend. I truly was going la, la, la when I've been watering the orchid pots. Oh well, makes for a nice surprise. Aren't the orchid's colors gorgeous? The Husband's bicycle has almost the same color of green.  

Sigh. I miss pedaling around on Tilda-Hilda, my sweet pink cruiser.


The ornamental pear tree is in full bloom. This is the second year that the tree's branches are in synch with their flowers. Until last year, it could've been October, December, March, June, or whenever a branch felt like showing off its blooms. I'm happy with whatever it wants to do.


On Valentine's Day, I sowed a large packet full of seeds that when in bloom will attract butterflies and hummingbirds. I threw the seeds in that old drawer (in the photo) and in that space in front of it. I put branches and twigs on top of the ground to keep birds and cats out. A trick I learned from the Mama.

So, if all goes well, 26 days from now, the drawer and ground will be crowded with asters, black-eyed Susans, milkweed, California poppies, echinacea, scarlet sage, wallflower, and a few other flowers.  Knock on wood.


F is the featured letter on ABC Wednesday this week. The meme lets participants link up for several days after Wednesday. Thank you very much, ABCW team.  Click here to go to the ABCW site.


Monday, January 23, 2017

Watching the Grass Grow


We've been having a wonderful winter of rain. The rainfall during the last couple of weeks has been like it used to be with flooding creeks, roads, and streets. It's possible the powers-that-be will say the drought is over in our area. Still, we shall need to continue to conserve water because our local population is growing due to the hundreds of houses being built.

I seem to want to work out in the garden just at it starts raining. All that means is I go outside while it's just a light drizzle to deadhead flowers and snap off jade branches killed by the frost.

Our front lawn has come back. With a vengeance, I think. The Husband says the grass is thick because he hasn't cut it. Not once since it started coming back. I'm fine with that. Actually, I'm curious to see how tall the grass can grow before I pull some out in a month or so when it's best to sprinkle pixie dust and wildflower seeds.

I took the above photo yesterday. Below is how the lawn looked in previous months. Giggle.

November 2016

September 2016

May 2016

I'm linking up with All Seasons today. It's a weekly meme hosted by Jesh at Artworks from JeshStG. Click here to check out the other participants and/or to join the fun.



Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Banana Quixote


The banana plant reminds me of Don Quixote fighting at the windmills. Don't you think? This Banana Quixote attacks the apple tree branches.

By now, the Mama's banana grove ought to be pruned back. The rain and the muddy ground have kept me from doing the job. When it's not raining, the temperatures have been in the 30s in the early mornings. I was going to say that's cold for us, but that's only because we forget from one winter to the next.

Anyway, this year I've learned that icy temperatures burn the banana fronds dry, just like not watering would. Interesting, huh?

Click here to see what the grove looks like the rest of the year.

 It's the letter B on ABC Wednesday. Click here to join in and/or check out the other participants of the weekly meme.  Thank you, ABCW team!




Thursday, January 5, 2017

Impatient for the Last Frost


Boooooo!

So-and-so website estimates that the last frost in my area will be between March 1 and March 10.

Huff. 

I want to sow the flower seed mixes that when (notice I saw 'when' not 'if') they blossom shall be yummmm nectar for the bees, butterflies, and other buggy guys living or roaming around our house. 

Hmmm.


I could just sow a little bit from each packet mix now and the rest when the seeds are supposed to meet dirt.

Be an experiment: See what works.

Guess what I'm going to do tomorrow if it's not raining?

Monday, October 31, 2016

Little by Little


That's how I do things these days—little by little.

Little by little, I'm clearing out the Mama's belongings, moving furniture around, changing things, and so on and so forth. I work at a task until the sadness surfaces. Some tasks, I'm not ready to do.

The front yard has been easier to tackle. Somewhat. I committed myself in August when I dug out a bit of the lawn and planted some of the Mama's jade plants that outgrew their pots. Click here and scroll to the bottom of the post, to see how the change looked in September.

Progress has been little by little.


A couple weeks ago, I created a geranium corner in the upper part of the yard. At first, I planned to transplant some of the Mama's geraniums into the ground, but then I decided to have the Mama's reading chair grace that corner. (The chair is too flimsy for anyone heavier than the Mama to sit on.) I want to eventually paint the chair yellow and blue, or maybe just blue or just yellow. Maybe later, when the geraniums outgrow their pots, I'll put them in the ground. We shall see.

I still have quite a few geraniums that I need to repot. Also, geraniums to trim and to decide whether to propagate some of their stems. And, then there are the roses and everything else that needs attention. My head spins thinking about it.

Take a deep breath.

Little by little.

Blogger friend Jesh hosts a weekly meme called All Seasons, which is open from Sunday to Wednesday for anyone to link her post.  Click here to join in or to read what other participants are writing about.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Changing Landscape

May 12, 2016

The Mama was quite proud of her lawn. Green. Manicured. Weedless.

When she no longer could take care of the lawn, she hired a lawn guy, which was a great luxury for the Mama. When that got too expensive, she sighed and accepted that the lawn would be cut during my monthly visit. Then, when the Husband and I moved in with the Mama, the lawn became the Husband's job.

As the drought became a real thing, watering the lawn was a luxury, as well as an ongoing skirmish between the Mama and me. The Husband continued watering it, but not as often or as much. The Mama took to watering it when we were gone, if she felt the lawn was fading.

I was very happy when the City finally decreed a water rationing and a $500 fine for using too much water. "You have to decide," I said to the Mama, "water for your vegetable garden or the lawn. You can't have both for now."

The lawn faded. The Mama sighed. The Mama complained. Fortunately, the lawn came back after the winter rains.

We had a steady rainy season this past winter. The lawn was thick with greenness. The Mama was very happy. "I wish the lawn would be green like this all the time," the Mama often said to us, as she looked out the window while we ate lunch.

I'm glad the lawn thrived for the Mama as her body was winding down.

Only nature has watered the lawn since the Mama has left us.

The Husband and I like a green lawn, too, but to have one when our water source is depleting is simply not a good idea. In May we planned to hire someone to pull out the lawn so that we could put in a drought-resistant landscape. This and that, and that and this, put that plan down on the list.

More than two weeks ago, on the Mama's birthday, I dug out a small portion of the lawn and planted three of the Mama's overgrown potted jade plants. Yesterday, I dug out a bit more of the lawn, which is how it will be, a little bit at a time. I've already heard other plants of the Mama's saying they'd like to hang out on her once-upon-a-time lawn.

While I was working yesterday, I saw and heard crows cawing and watching me from across the street. I like to think that the Mama's spirit was saying, "It's your lawn now. Do what you want. It looks good."

September 12, 2016



Sunday, July 24, 2016

A Sunflower Grows


For the past 12 summers, a summer isn't summer without sunflowers growing somewhere in the front, back, or side of the house. I sowed the first sunflower seeds, and until this year, the Mama sowed seeds from the previous year's harvest.

I tossed the seeds about the backyard too late, meaning after the last of the rain. And, me watering sporadically and forgetting where I had tossed the seeds, not a sunflower was to be seen.

Then. Last week, I saw that spindly sunflower smiling at me as I was watering flowers.

I'll do better next year.



I'm linking up with Seasons, a weekly meme hosted by jesh stg. Click here to join in and/or to check out other blogs.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Mama's Apples


Two of Mama's apple trees are producing quite a lot of fruit this year, unlike the past two or three years. Some of you already know about the story of her apple trees. So, please bear with me as I say again that the Mama's apple trees started from seeds of apples that the Mama ate about 28 years ago.

The Mama was told:

"They'll never grow into trees."

 "They'll never bear fruit."

 "You won't be around long enough for the trees to grow and bear fruit."

Ha. Ha. And, Ha!

The Mama tasted many years worth of apples from her trees.


Today begins a new round of the alphabet at ABC Wednesday, a delightful weekly meme started by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt and continuing under the administration of Roger Green and his ABCW team.  Click here to join in or to check out what bloggers are writing about the letter A.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Some Are Growing, Summer Eating


This morning I plucked the orange cherry tomatoes in the photo from the limbs of Jo. Yes, those are tiny orange tomatoes. When the first ones ripened, I wondered why they weren't getting red. It's a good thing the short-term memory box of mine kicked in before the fruits dropped off their branches.

Led Zeppelin and Valerie are producing fruit, too. Barely. They're bravely keeping their tiny fruit going. I haven't been very good about remembering to water the trio, especially during the hot days. When I do water them, I don't promise that I'll be better about the task. I hate breaking promises.

The yellow fruit in the photo are Asian pears, which are from our small tree.  It has produced a big crop this year because of the winter rains. I'm picking the fruit as they ripen. I wish the Mama was here to enjoy them.

I'm sharing today's post at Seasons, a fun weekly meme hosted by Jeanette of St Germain's Blog. Please click here to join in and/or check out the other participants.




Wednesday, June 15, 2016

A Wagon Full of Rocks


Last week, the Husband and I rediscovered the landscaping supply store outside of town. Our original intent was to merely check out  the ground covering alternatives for a future pull-out-the-front-lawn project. When I came across the pit full of tiny rocks, I had to have some. So, I got about 5 pounds for about two dollars. What a bargain!

I went home and proceeded to quickly use them in cup planters that I was putting together. So, of course, the next day, we went back to the store and I bought 10 pounds. I went home, and, yup, within a couple of hours I was down to a small bowl full of stones. I wasn't close to potting and repotting all the Mama's plants.

To make sure I did something else the rest of the week, I didn't go to the store. Good, girl, me.

Yesterday morning, I broke down and the Husband and I drove to the store and went home with four bags full of stones for a total of 120 pounds. Ha! We'll see how long that lasts.

By the way, that's only two bags full of rocks in the red wagon.

Talk about talking about nothing, huh?


It's the letter W at ABC Wednesday. Click here to join the weekly meme or/and check out more W posts by bloggers around the world.



Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Various Varieties


This is what I've been doing with some of the Mama's various varieties of cups. 


This is what I've been doing with some of the Mama's various varieties of plants that need to be put into pots or repotted.

I'm having a lot of fun.



It's the letter V at ABC Wednesday. Click here to check out the other participants or to link up with the weekly meme started by Denise Nesbitt and continued today by the ABCW team headed by Roger Green.
 
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Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Three Amigas


Photos for this week's Friday's Hunt, hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills, include:
• Starts with T
• Week's favorite
• Evening 

My favorite photo is of the three different types of tomato plants that are now residing together in my first veggie garden in a long time.  Meet Jo, Led Zeppelin, and Valerie, from left to right.  Jo is already sporting a tiny tomato. Yaay! Led Zeppelin is quite a survivor, having almost dried up. And, Valerie is a volunteer and quite a fuzzy gal.

The three amigas are nightshade plants. Nightshade, evening. Close enough.  

To join in on the fun and/or see what photos other participants are sharing, please click here

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Surprise: Apple Blossoms!


When Molly the Cat and I opened the curtains in the living room this morning, the first thing we noticed was the puddle of water on the patio.

"Look, Molly! It rained during the night." Noticing the white petals in the puddle, I glanced up at the apple tree. "Apple blossoms!"

Molly the Cat looked out the window, posed in her So are we going outside to explore further stance. She didn't seem as pleased about the apple blossoms as the Mama and the Husband did when I told them.

It may be a good year for apples from that tree, which the Mama planted from seeds 28 years ago.


I'm hooking up with Seasons, a new weekly meme hosted by Jeanette at St Germain's Blog. Click here to check out other participants.


Sunday, January 10, 2016

Another Pruning Job


This afternoon the Husband and I pruned the Miracle Tree. Saw-saw-swear-saw. Clip-swear-clip-clip. We were three branches away from finishing when Only and Older Bionic Brother surprised us with a visit. Whooo-hooo! He came out to watch us complete our job and that brought out the Mama. The first time she set foot in the backyard since October. Whooo-hooo! 

Thankfully, it was a warm day. The Mama's eyes were good from afar. She couldn't resist. "Cut that branch." "And, that branch." I was perched on the ladder at a weird angle so it took me awhile to find "And, that branch." The Brother's eyes for pruning were still good. "You want to cut that one so it doesn't grow towards the house."

Only and older Brother stayed the afternoon. Hurrah! That also meant the Husband and I didn't have to deal with the yucky part of the pruning job—snipping, cutting, and bagging the branches, leaves, and seed pods—until tomorrow. That's okay. It was great seeing Only and Older Brother.



Friday, December 25, 2015

Jade Plants and a Rose


I didn't notice the good-luck jade plants growing next to the Mama's red rose bush by the patio until I started playing with this photo in Photoshop. Now, why did I think the jade plant in the front yard is the only one sporting white flowers? Silly me.

The red rose was what caught my eye the other morning when Molly the Cat and I went out to stalk a squirrel we saw tiptoeing along the fence. A bird distracted Molly from the squirrel. Not good hunters are we. Which is just as well. After all, what would we do with the squirrel had we caught it.  Fortunate squirrel.

From the Husband, the Mama, Molly the Cat, and Me, Su-sieee! Mac:   
Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Persimmons!


The Mama's persimmon tree gave us an abundant crop this year. We're sharing the fruit on the top branches with the birds and squirrels. I told them to leave the lower branches for us. So far, so good.




Thursday, December 3, 2015

Warm-hearted Rose


We've had frosty mornings for the past two weeks now. I'm pretty much used to it now. Yesterday, I noticed a rose bud waving as I was raking leaves in the backyard. Then I noticed several more here and there around the yard. They are the Mama's blooms.

Today, I'm linking up with Warm Heart Wednesday, a new meme hosted by the lovely Jenny Matlock. Click here to read joyful posts.



Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Patiently Waiting


Our original avocado tree has about 30 fruits. The Mama and I counted them a few weeks ago.

I learned that avocados start to ripen once they're picked, and the best place to store avocados are on their trees. Up until a point. And, that's when they look like they're about to shrivel, which means they'll soon fall. Those we won't want to eat. I'm sure the Mama would still say, "Nothing wrong with them." Anyway, I don't want the avocados to get to that point.

Maybe after Thanksgiving, we can pick an avocado and see if it'll ripen in two weeks. Yummmm. Knock on wood.


Monday, November 16, 2015

The Mama's Happy


Today is a sunny day, but quite chilly because of the wind factor. According to the thermometer, it's about 52 degrees in the sun.

Molly the Cat came inside about 20 minutes ago. How about the Mama?

The Mama says it's colder inside, even with the heater on.

She'd come in if the garden happened to be inside.  Maybe.




Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Ten Minutes on the Ladder Today


Rattle, rattle, rattle.

"Sounds like the Mama is playing with the ladders," said the Husband. We were in our office in the front of the house. Fortunately, we can hear the rattle of ladders through the window.

I sighed. Looking away from the computer, I said, "It's time to give her medicine anyway."

* * * * *
The Mama stood holding onto the fruitless persimmon tree, the six-foot ladder propped on the ground next to her feet. She looked both guiltily and defiantly at me.

"What are you doing?"

"I need to prune the persimmon tree," she said.

"Here, take your medicine," I said, handing her a cup of water and the pill box. "Move away. Let me do it."

"I can do it," she said.

"Yes, you can. But, I'm doing it," I said, struggling to put the ladder in the narrow space.

"Just those two branches shooting straight up," she said. "Not the one with the fruit."

Climbing the ladder, I saw that she had already cut a few branches that she was able to reach from the ground or standing on her three-foot ladder. I sighed.

* * * * *
"Don't cut the branch with the persimmon."

"That's an apple," I said.

"That's a persimmon."

"No, it's an apple."

"Persimmon!"

"Apple!"

"Are you telling me that the persimmon tree now makes apples?" she asked in her you're-crazy-how-are-you-my-daughter voice.

"It's a branch from the apple tree," I said in my you're-nuts-how-are-you-my-mother voice.

"Show me the apple branch," she demanded from below.

I pulled down the persimmon branch. The apple hung clearly from its branch.

The Mama laughed.  I laughed.

"I thought the persimmon tree finally had fruit," said the Mama.

"Shall I cut off the branch?"

"Go ahead."

Altogether, it took me 10 minutes to prune the fruitless persimmon tree, which would've taken the Mama half an hour. I quite enjoyed it—the sawing, the clipping,  the precarious perch on the ladder, and the following of instructions from the Mama as she sat on her tiny green bench beneath me.

No doubt, the Mama missed that very satisfying feeling of standing on the ladder pruning away.