Copyright © 1997-2009 Demand Media. All rights reserved.
Saturday outside under my little shed working with paint! I acquired three little gnomes from a DIL that needed some color. They look like jolly old men now.
The window frame I am going to hang got a final clean up then I painted a little bit of a cat face looking out and glued a hummingbird sun catcher in the other corner. Can't wait to get it up.
There has been a broken plastic butterfly in my possession for the last few years that used to be on a metal sitck for the garden. Decided to spray paint it black and hang it on my shed. Looks really cute. When I downloaded this pix I saw that the original colors are coming through.
My son, wife and her mom came by on a Sunday afternoon. I always enjoy their visit. We went to Stephanos italian resturant to eat. Such good food.
My Cherokee tomato plants have been putting out blooms, but they soon dry and drop off. Any suggestions from any of you? I consulted some of my MG books and one thing they said was not enough water. So I have sunk white jugs into the ground so I can get water to the roots and mulched them good. Now I wait, sure do want these plants to make good maters.
Just found this info on the web -
"Blossom-Drop" is a condition suffered by tomatoes, peppers, snap beans, and some other fruiting vegetables where the plant blooms but fails to set fruit, the blooms die and fall off. It may be caused by the use of excess nitrogen fertilizers or dry windy conditions, but the most common cause is temperature extremes. Tomatoes, peppers and beans are especially picky about the air temps when it comes time to set fruit. If the night temps fall below 55 or rise above 75 or if the day temps are above 90, the pollen becomes tacky and non-viable. Pollination cannot occur. If the bloom isn't pollinated, the bloom dies and falls off.
Control: Water the plants deeply once a week, mulch heavily to maintain constant soil moisture levels, establish windbreaks as needed, avoid using excessive amounts of nitrogen fertilizers, and wait for temperatures to moderate and stabilize. Earlier timed planting can help attain fruit set prior to the on-set of high temps, and the use of protection can compensate for cool nights. Some recommend attempting hand-pollination with an artist brush or a gentle shaking of the plant/cage/support prior to the hottest part of the day will also help. Fruit set will resume when temperatures moderate. Hormone sprays, such as "Blossom Set", may prevent some blossom drop due to LOW temperatures. However, the resulting fruit are often misshapen. But studies prove that hormone sprays do not prevent blossom drop due to HIGH temperatures.
And boy howdy haven't we all had weird weather. Temp up and down, hot then cold? I will give them a good shaking tomorrow then wait some more. Here are my little vegetable plants.
Have picked one tomato from the Whopper, one cuke and 2 squash since these pix were taken. And the Cherokee Purple has baby tomatos now. YEA!
This is a Collage of Wild White, Domesticated Pink and my neighbors Yellow Yarrow. We are going to trady some white for yellow. On the bottom are phases of the Lady In Red Hydrangea. Now the blossoms are gettting a deeper pink shade. Sure hope they go on to the red color the pictures show on line.
The metal headboard that I painted red has another place to rest. It will be glad when I finally get it put into place behind my little back yard patio.
And last but surely not the least is a photo of what I now believe to be seedlings from the purple Cuphea named Cha Cha. She did a dance and look what happened! :-) Be careful girls what you shake :-)
Here is this naughty little girl from last year. Thank you sweet plant. I understand that a grower can breed plants in such a way that they do not reseed. I am glad this one escaped or was not deemed 'good enough' to be a reseeder. Sure wish I could get a red type that escaped that trait.
More To Come Later
days have been really busy. I have been able to spend the major portion of both days out side. Yesterday was mowing and blowing day. Got that over with pretty quickly then headed out to the shed area. We are going to do the dreaded 'yard sale' (some days I would like to sell the weedy lawn) and there is stuff in and out of the shed that need to be carried to the trash dump or sold.
Malva Zebrina finally! Have planted seeds given by a GG member a a couple of times and now it is blooming.
So much stuff gets thrown in the shed during the end of the season and winter. I had broken down some boxes to use under the mulch and did not use them all. That went into the regular trash along with a box full of small pieces of wood from the building of the room addition. Threw out old plastic tubs, old broken down baskets and very old flower pots. Found old cabinet doors and 2 drawers from when we did the kitchen redo for the yard sale. I guess if I haven't needed them in the last 3 years I never will. Then there are the old windows I saved in case I got an urge to do a window craft. I did use one small one before we did the shed makeover and will keep it. Another is in the process of getting a paint job so it can be installed on the side of the shed. The others will go in the yard sale.
Such a pretty little plant.
Someone gave me a large heavy duty yard bag that I used once. It was way too heavy to lug all over the yard when you are doing big weeding. It would be very usefull if you raked leaves as they do not weigh so much. This item will go in the yard sale. I am thinking of filling it with old flower baskets and pots and letting them all go together.
Found a floor fan in there that has not had any use in many years. The last time I used it was one hot summer day and I was doing some craft or another, it was so hot, I brought the extension cords out and turned the fan on me in the yard. Originally it was purchased when we had the small screened porch. It came in handy out there, especially on a long hot summer evening. Found a few broken down things and some old rotted boards that will go to the dump.
Decided to sell my little rock pool that I liked so well, but could never get it to work right. Three times of setting it up and redoing it was enough. Someone will have the right place for it and the hard wire electricity to get it to run well. So farewell little friend, the feathered friends will have to bathe in the bird bath.
My shed is home to multiple paint cans of assorted colors. Who knows how old some of them are. I will be sorting through them tomorrow or may start this evening. I am a little stove up after the days work. Got out the electrical edger and did the driveway and sidewalk. All the rain we have had has made the grass grow like wild. Just not where I would like it to, like maybe in the middle of my front yard? No it had grown 3 to 4 inches over the driveway. Did not know it was that bad. So it took a bit of effort and several hours to edge, rake and clean up and then blow away the dirt. Using the edger was a bit like using that pressure washer - Work!! Worked from about 9:30 until at least 12:30 PHEW! Between yesterday and this day my body is not wishing to move around much.
Lady in Red Hydrangea ready to burst into bloom. She is supposed to bloom a light pink color and then get red as it ages. Thanks to a kind hearted GG member.
Next I will go through the house. We have an old stationary bike that I have never been comfortable using, It just does not sit well and makes my back hurt. DH has used it a little in the last year but he is ready to give it up. I wonder if he is feeling uncomfortable in getting on and off with his mobility problems. He hasn't said but that is my thought. If it does not sell for my price I have a friend that will be getting it as a gift. I get stubborn at yard sales.
I have old picture frames I have picked up at other peoples yard sales over the years - more projects that never get started, so now I will regift them to some other poor crafty woman. There is an old ceramic christmas tree in the attic and who knows what else? I know there are a couple of suitcases that haven't seen use in forever. Maybe I should just open up an antique booth and see what happens? Then we broach the subject of knick knacks, or maybe we shouldn't. There is more junk in this house and it is going to get cleaned out. I am on a tear, lets just hope it doesn't wane and I get sidetracked thinking of a craft I could do but won't for sure.
And my faithful little pickup truck will be up for sale in a few weeks. Just not going to be hauling the mulch around anymore. The trips I take this year will take care of the yard for a number of years. Thank goodness that mulch is such a good weed deterent. It is time for me to take care of me and quit pushing myself to do some things I just can't do as well as I could a few years ago. I want to enjoy my gardens and that includes the weeding and transfer of one plant after another to different beds.
LIke this beautiful brown beared Iris. Can't remember and have not looked through last years photos to see if it bloomed last year. But I love it.
Going out now to get some milk and check on new kittens that might have been brought into the back of the yard. My neighbor and I go through this every spring. And that will be a tale for another day.
More To Come Later
be the end of me yet. That load of bad mulch went back today with the help of my son. Mr Leon who loads it for me was there today and he laughed when he saw what I brought back to the yard waste recycle site. He loaded us up with a nice batch (fit for the city to use) and home we came.
Well now my little LoadHandler http://loadhandler.com/ has this great handle that gets put on when you need it and taken off when you are finished unloading. In our concentration of getting the truck ready with tarp and the car tags where they can be seen, we forgot about the handle that was laying on the ground. Of course we did not know that until we got home and were ready to turn out this fine load of mulch.:[ I called to ask that they keep an eye out for the handle but I figure someone somewhere will get this handle in a load of mulch and wonder what the heck is this?
Now the good part of this is when I first got this contraption there was a large bolt missing and I had to get a complete replacement kit which had the bar handle included. Actually found that box sitting way back on a shelf, so now we have a handle and my son will outfit it with a large bolt. We will be back in business soon. Hopefully there will only be one more load needed. By the way this Loadhandler is a real winner for any of you that haul anything heavy. They tell you that it will pull a heavy piano to the front of your truck for easier unloading. Check it out.
Went earlier to the yard waste site to get mulch. The regular guy was not there and I will not go again unless he is working. I was told his supervisor would get the mulch for me. They do offer a willing service. That load is nothing but sticks. He dumped it all over my truck and I literally had to dig my truck out just to get the tarp on for the ride home. Since I have that great LoadHandler piece on the truck, it will be no trouble to take it back and dump it where it came from. Will be calling tomorrow if there is no rain in the am to see if I really can take it back and to make sure my guy is working.
I had a personal rain shower as well while I was waiting on the guy to load the mulch. So now I am wet and you know how clean you are after working with mulch/soil in damp clothes. As we neared home it began to rain even more. So now we are having thunder in the distance and more great rain. So nice when you don't have to put city water on your plants.
I have completed the pathways in the big flower garden except for one small space. The next load will go around the perimeter of the back yard, around the shed a foot or so and encompass the garden bed to the left of the shed. It will meet up with the mulched area under great great granny dogwood tree. The next and hopefully last load will go through the pathways under the DW tree and skirt the rest of the back yard closer to the house. It will be so good to have this project finished. I know many of you are tired of hearing about my mulch woes. And so am I. We will be selling the truck after this is all finished and I get some junk hauled off that is behind the shed. Mulch should not be needed again for several years and I don't plan on doing it on my own again.
All the plants are looking so good. We have had a good mix of sun and rain. Not quite warm enough for the most part to encourage the veggies to grow vigoriously, but they are looking good. The strawberry plants are producing lots of good fruit for the birds. There are not enough of the berries ripening at one time to think about picking for our pleasure. Though I have gotten two or three and they are pretty good. My blueberries are doing well also and I will be covering them in order to reap my own harvest. I don't allow the birds to take all of those.
The iris blossoms were spectacular this year. Most of them are gone now. Some of the lillies are beginning to show lots of buds so they will be gorgeous in a week or two. The Stellas of course are blooming, such nice little plants. They don't ask for a thing but to give you pleasure. The Clematis have given a great show this year as well. Even new ones just put in last fall have bloomed nicely.
This is a new Clematis, don't know the name. It was a 'save me' from Lowes last fall.
This is my Bronze/Puple that I discovered last year. It had not bloomed in a long while.
Another new Clematis - no name - but it is one of my favorites.
The oldest clematis in my gardens. A double white and this beautiful bright rose pink.
This another new saved clematis. It was called ' Fireworks"
This such a pretty all white Iris.
And last the Lily of the Valley.
More To Come Later
purchased at the Bean Market Museum. This is called by several names: Rabbit Ears, Jammy Mouth and Hummingbird Plant. You can look at this website to see information.
This is the bud, looks a bit pregnant doesn't it?
Then it begins to open:
And finally it pulls its 'wings' back. This is where the different names come into play.
This is not the photo I wanted to download but it is OK. The bloom at the top looks more like Rabbit Ears. Hummers are supposed to love this plant. The Jammy Mouth comes from the fact that 'juices' or 'sap' collects in the 'mouth' of the plant.
Ruttya fruticosa Orange
Rabbit ears, Orange bird, Hummingbird plant
Origin: Tropical Africa
And after the carport/patio cleaning and the house plants are outside. Even cleaned the old metal table this year. Things are looking up for the summer.
And finally the seed box bed fell apart from wood rot this year. I have torn it down and want to place the Rabbit Ear Shrub in that area.
Those bigger plants are the Lunaria and they got really big. Transplanted and gave away some of them. Looking for great plants and 'money' next year.
The box itself was the bottom of a shipping crate I found at the street, hauled it home, jig sawed out the bottom, filled it with potting soil and whatever else I had to put inside. It has grown a few things over the last few years but I think I am finished with seeds at least on this size plot anyway. I did get one of Maggie Evans Malva Zebrinas to grow and transplanted it into a small pot to see if it will get a bit bigger and to protect it from those crazy diggin' squirrels.
More To Come Later
catch up since I am not feeling so well this morning. I think it was a greasy hamburger that did me in. Yuck! Prefer my own to the greasy spoon variety.
Last week was a joy! Had a great visit with Fairygarden on Friday looking at my yard and then sorting through fabric - some of which must be 15 years old. One piece was maybe 6 yards with loud obnoxious orange, green and purple teddy bears. Now what was I thinking and help me that it was not something I thought my then baby granddaughter would look good in as matching outfits. It is going out. I would love to see the next person that would think it would look good on anything especially a person. FG actually took a few pieces for her own use and she made good choices. We always seem to laugh when we meet up. Thanks FG see you again soon.
Then on Saturday my DH and I took a drive to Lake City. We had been graciously invited to meet Witt in person while she was visiting her mom for her 91st birthday. I felt honored that they would accept a complete stranger to visit on such a family day. This visit just confirms once again that the members on Garden Guides are indeed friends. Witt walked me all around her moms yard which really looks like a city park. Of course there is history there even down to the boxwoods that have come down through the generations of her family. Cuttings of the serissa shrub were offered and taken. Such a pretty plant.
Witt and I, in her moms gardens.
With our Dear Hubbies.
We discovered after the fact that one of her cousins is my consultant here at the weight loss center. Small world huh? And then a Master Gardener friend who grew up in Lake City knew of Witt and her family. It was a good day.
After we left Witt we stopped at a very small 'farmers market'. It is held next to what is known as the Bean Market Museum http://www.discoversou
aspx which in its hayday was a really busy place. There is renovation going on in the Museum itself and I will be looking to hear of an opening date.
This pix is really fuzzy and I was upset that I did not follow the rule of taking more than one photo of a subject. The two ladies on the left are my MG friends. The taller of the two is Barb who has greenhouses. She began just propagating for herself, then was able to purchase used greenhouses and now supplies plants to several vendors at our Farmers Market. She is a real Master Gardener with a green thumb. She and Sally work together not only in the greenhouse but in making themselves available to speak to different groups.
This is off to the right of the above picture.
From there we headed back home and decided to make a stop at the Pee Dee Farmers Market. Hubby didn't find what he was looking for but of course I came home with a few more annuals to complete my gardeners heart.
I will be so glad when these vegetables are all locally grown. Thanks to all the florida growers that ship to us.
Friends and Flowers what could be better? just MORE of the same.
More To Come Later
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