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



"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.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

The Mama's Vegetable Garden

Here's a treat for you and me—a photo of the Mama's vegetable garden in the late 1990s. I'd say this is probably late February or early March. Are you as surprised as I am how few fruit trees and flower bushes were back there?

The Miracle Tree, by the shed on the right, was spindly. And, the apple tree way in the corner wasn't visible. Only the lemon tree, on the left, was going strong.

The Mama's vegetable garden was much bigger back then.  She was in her mid-70s. A youngster.

Here's how her garden looked this morning.  It's smaller and much of it is not visible. The lemon tree is hidden behind the apple and avocado trees. You still can't see the apple tree in the corner, which is now very tall, because of everything else.

I can hardly wait to show the Mama the photos.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Poor Tree

The ornamental pear tree in our front yard is totally mixed up. Flowers are blooming on some of its branches. They are definitely pretty, but that's not supposed to happen in October.

Nor, for that matter in December or January. That was going on last year and earlier this year.

Some branches bloomed in mid or late Spring when they are supposed to do their thing.

I don't think it's because of the drought. This tree is said to tolerate drought conditions. I think it's the hot temperatures we've been having the last two months that's causing some flowers to bloom.

We have yet to see flowers bloom on every branch at the same time. If it did, wowza, I imagine it to look like a tree full of snow.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Peppers & Persimmons

Sounds like a nice title for something -- Peppers & Persimmons. Or, perhaps, Persimmons & Peppers. Maybe without the ampersand, and italicized: Peppers and Persimmons; or, Persimmons and Peppers.

The pepper plants have been kind to us this year. Three of four fruits every couple of weeks.

The persimmons are slowly ripening on the tree. We're going to have an extra good crop this year. 

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Four-O-Clock Flowers

Pink four-o-clock flowers have been growing crazily and happily around the front and back yards this summer. These are among the late bloomers. The flowers open up in the afternoon, hence the name. Supposedly they stay open through the night.

Four-o-clock flowers are annuals. They're also called the Marvel of Peru, where the lovely flowers originated in the Andes Mountains. Four-o-clock flower and Marvel of Peru are both very pretty names. So is it's technical name—Mirabilis jalapa.

They showed up a couple of years ago in the front yard, near the sidewalk, just on our side of the property line. Mama saved the seeds from last year's blooms and threw them along the fence in the back and north side of the house.  I tossed them in the lawn, but nothing came up. Weeds did, so maybe I threw some other seeds. I won't get it wrong for next year.  The Mama has a large bucket full of seeds already, and I collected my own small bucket of seeds to toss around. We shall see what happens next year.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Long, Lanky, and Loves Rosemary

This cute bug dropped by as I was working in the front garden this morning. I have no clue what he or she is. Nor where it came from. I suppose it flew onto the rosemary bush.

Next thing I knew the bug was chomping away on the rosemary! 

Okay, a Google search of rosemary-eating bugs showed round beetles. Nothing long and lanky as this dude or dudette.  Anyone have an idea?

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Sunday in the Backyard

The Mama was playing in the mud this morning. Her favorite thing to do. Okay, she was replanting  Filipino onions, which she does every several weeks.

The Mama likes to say, "You cannot fool me." And that's what I say. The Mama cannot fool me. She's playing in the mud and she's having lots of fun out there. Yup, she's still out there as I'm writing this post.

While the Mama was playing with her onions, Molly the Cat did her rounds of the backyard. She was late this morning. She sat on the chair, which was once the Mama's favorite chair, for the longest time after breakfast. The Mama asked her, "Are you sick, Molly?  Do you have a headache?"

The Mama opened the back door and Molly the Cat jumped off the chair in no time. "Don't go far," said the Mama.

I think Molly wanted her photo taken because she kept close to me while I was clicking away by the lemon tree. But, would she look prettily at the camera? Of course, not.  "Find a candid shot, Lady," said Molly.

So, what's new in the Mama's garden today?

Three of the four marunggay seeds have sprouted. The seeds were from the Philippines, which came from a friend of the Mama's, who got them from a cousin. Marunggay is a huge tree with yummy leaves to eat. Health buffs are now touting the marunggay as a wonder food to eat.

The tomatoes are growing on what the Mama likes to call the "tomato tree" because the plant is about 4 feet tall or more.  Lemons are abundant. And, some of the apple blossoms that popped out a month ago actually has become fruit.

It was full house in the backyard this morning.  The Husband even went out to throw garbage. Yup. It was a good Sunday morning in the backyard.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

The Mama -- the Zestful Gardener

Today is the end of the 16th round of ABC Wednesday, which was begun by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt eight years ago. Thanks to Roger, Di, Wil, and others for keeping the meme going.

For this round, I have been writing about The Mama and Her Authentic Green Thumbs. . .and Fingers. With this last post, I give you photos of the zen and zip of the 93-year-old Mama in action over the last several years working her magic in her gardens.

Look at this! I actually caught the Mama resting yesterday. Of course, it was at the end of the day. But, if I didn't tell it was almost time for dinner, she would've kept on going. Molly the Cat helped to get her to stop by weaving in front of her.

To check out Z posts by bloggers around the world, click hereSee you next week with a brand new theme for ABC Wednesday.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Within Seven Years

My ABC Wednesday theme: The Mama and Her Authentic
Green Thumbs. . .and Fingers
The above photo is from seven years ago. That was the year the Mama decided it was okay to have planter boxes in her garden. She devised them herself, using loose boards, branches, and rocks.

At first, she grew vegetables in this box, but they didn't do to well. Too much shade from the miracle, apricot, and persimmon trees. I think it was four years ago, she decided to simply grow flowers in that box. "I like flowers," she said. "I want lots of flowers here." New flowers went in the box, as well as cuttings from her geraniums and daisies. I had my doubts. What was I thinking, right?

Yes, the box is full flowers. That's what it looked like this past March and April. The rear of the box is now full of geraniums.

Here's what the box looked like a few weeks ago. The Mama put up the headless scarecrow in hopes of scaring off the animals that were eating the apricots. Hasn't worked. But, I don't think she really minds too awful much. 

I'm linking up at ABC Wednesday, which was started by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt and continued today by Roger, Di, Wil, and others of the ABCW team. To find other Y posts by bloggers from around the world, click here.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Watching the Mama's Garden Grow—Seven Weeks Later

The Asian pear tree
Back in May, Molly the Cat suggested I keep tabs on how certain parts of the Mama's garden are progressing throughout the summer. Here's the original post.  And, here are what those spots look like seven weeks later.

Bean vines are climbing up the wires. The Mama has harvested a hand full already.

Other kind of beans are growing in the middle boxes.
See how well the morning glories have grown.

Because it's not being watered as much (drought, you know), the apple tree
hasn't many leaves. A few apples are growing though. You can see one near the
top right hand corner of the picture.
Mama planted four eggplant plants at the end of May. I'm impressed at how they're bursting with fruit in simply four weeks. We ate one eggplant last week. It looks like we'll be eating more soon.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

X-ray Vision

My ABC Wednesday theme: The Mama and Her Authentic
Green Thumbs. . .and Fingers
The Mama doesn't drive anymore because she can't pass the eye test for her driver's license. (Thank goodness for that.) She gets annoyed with night and dimly lit scenes in movies on the TV because she can't quite make out what's going on, no matter how bright we make the monitor. But, in her garden, the mad horticulturist has x-ray vision, with a side of radar.

Do I see that lone, lemon leaf in the middle of the geraniums? Of course not. The Mama does.

Do I see the banana blossom sprouting within the banana grove? Nope. The Mama does.

Do I see that big chayote hanging in the midst of the miracle tree? Uh-uh. The Mama does.

It's the letter X at ABC Wednesday, a meme began by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt and today hosted by Roger Green and his ABC team. Click here to check out other X posts by bloggers around the world.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The Wonderful, Wondrous Work of the Wizardess

My ABC Wednesday theme: The Mama and Her Authentic
Green Thumbs. . .and Fingers
Three weeks ago, I showed you, dear readers, a photo of my tomato plant that got broken by the wind and the Mama put back into the soil. Quite a few of you expressed faith that the Mama's wizardy would help nurture it back to life. Well, here's what the tomato plant looks like as of yesterday evening.

Vibrant! I helped a bit by plucking off the dead leaves that you see in the top photo. Maybe I inherited some of the Mama's authentic green thumb and fingers gene.

I want to show you another wonder in the Mama's garden—the Blenheim apricot trees. She started with one tree, which is the one on the right with all the drooping branches full of apricots. The first two or three years that the tree produced, the Mama collected many of the apricot pits and planted them around the backyard.

See that tree on the left with the lone apricot. That's the first fruit of the second generation tree. There's another second-generation tree by the fence that burst forth with fruit this year, too, but with a dozen or more apricots.

The Mama has a rule about the first time a tree gives fruit. She has the Husband eat it. That way, the Mama says, the tree will grow more and a lot of fruit for years to come. How true is it? Well, the Husband was the first person to eat an apricot from the original tree.

It's the letter W at ABC Wednesday, a meme began by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt and today hosted by Roger Green and his ABC cohorts. Click here to check out other W posts by bloggers around the world.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The View of the Mama

A rare second: The Mama not fidgeting, not picking up leaves, not doing anything. The moment after I clicked the camera, she picked dried leaves off the rose bush in front of her.

It's ABC Wednesday. My theme this round has been The Mama and Her Authentic Green Thumb...and Fingers. Click here to check out what other participants are writing about the letter V.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

The Unobtrusive Apple

My ABC Wednesday theme: The Mama and her Authentic Green Thumb. . .
and Fingers
See the apple in the picture.

 I didn't see it when I took a photo of the branches this morning. So, I was utterly surprised when I saw the apple in the image on the computer.

The Mama and I didn't notice any blossoms on the tree earlier this year. I wonder how many other apples are hidden underneath the branches. Once I post this, I'm going outside to point out the unobtrusive apple to the Mama. Maybe we'll find others.

By the way, this apple tree, as well as two other apple trees, grew from seeds that the Mama planted nearly 28 years ago. Yup, from apples that she ate. People told her the tree would not ever bear fruit. Ha!

It's ABC Wednesday, a wonderful meme started by Denise Nesbitt and currently being administered by Roger Green and his wonderful ABC team. Come check out other U posts by bloggers from around the world.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Last Day in May Ramble

Today was watering-the-flowers morning, so Tilda-Hilda and I didn't go out for a ride. Maybe later if I can fix the twist in her tire, which makes her go bump, bump, bump. I didn't think much of it until I looked it up online. Experts say it's not a good idea to ride with a warped tire. The descriptions about what may cause a twisted tire reminds me of panties riding up. Poor Tilda-Hilda! If I can't fix her tire, then she's going to the bike shop tomorrow.

Watering the Plants

Our county finally imposed restrictions on water use for landscaping during the drought. I think it ought to stay in place even after the drought is over. But, that rant is for another post. Currently, everyone is allowed two days a week to water landscaping, which for us is Wednesday and Sunday. We water everything by hand. It takes longer, but it's more efficient and saves on water. So we think.

Because the Mama has a tough time of managing the hose, without spilling water all over the sidewalk, I water the flowers in both the front and back yards.  I leave watering the vegetables to her, which she can do any day of the week. The Mama has been kinda good about leaving the flowers to me. Still, she can't help watering any flowers next to the vegetables, if she thinks they can't wait another day. I don't make a big deal about it, like I would've have last year.  (I'm maturing.)  I just skip the flowers she has watered.

As for the lawn, I don't water it. Neither does the Husband, which is usually his task to do. He might later in the summer if the Mama starts watering it when we're not around. She likes her lawn. I don't blame her. We tell her she has to choose. Vegetables or the lawn? Interestingly, the two times that the Mama watered the lawn, it rained the next day.

Tiny Avocados

The other evening I was curious about whether the avocado tree had any fruit. It had a lot of flowers a couple months of ago. So, while Molly the Cat was eating her dinner alfresco on the patio (a story for another day), I checked out the avocado tree. Ooh la la! If all goes well, we're going to have a big crop this year. Right now, the fruits are the length of a fingernail, more or less. Here's how one branch of baby avocados looked this morning.