Friday, July 04, 2014

Outrageously Orange

My 'bottle rockets' are happily celebrating the 4th of July.
I've always had a mad crush on the color orange. Can't, for the life of me, figure out why it's considered the 'color of insanity.' Unless the folks who tell ME that are they trying to say that I'm...?


So, whaddyathink? Do you love orange? Do you hate it?

However you feel about orange, I'm sure you'll agree on one thing. Orange simply cannot be ignored.


I purchased a gorgeous orange dress one time. Back when I was skinny so I could wear pretty much anything. Except, maybe, that.

Whenever I wore it, people would ask me if I was feeling okay. Hmmm...


So, clearly orange is not my color. At least not on the bod.


But, that hasn't stopped me from squeezing it into every nook and cranny.. in the garden:



Here's hoping you're having a wonderfully lazy time of it during this holiday week. Happy 4th!
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Friday, June 27, 2014

The Apocalyse? And Perrennial Veggies

* Most vegetables are annuals and need to be re-planted every growing season. Scroll to the bottom of this post to view a list of veggies that come back year, after year.
What a lucky shot. A wee bee cruises in for a landing, just as I'm zooming in on the flowers.

Do you have an emergency preparedness plan? You know... like when the Zombie Apocalypse happens or something more boring... such as an earthquake?

There are ~ at least ~ 500 of these hot pink Knautia blooms, atop 3 foot stems, waving in the breeze. They're re-seeding themselves throughout the garden. (And, that's fine by me.)

I suppose that sounds kind of silly, asking about a preparedness plan, but it came up in a conversation, so I was wondering if you're more responsible than I am.

Dame's Rocket is another prolific re-seeder. Swallow Tail Butterflies 
love this plant, and call my gardens 'home' because of it.

I used to have one ~ a preparedness plan. After Hurricane Sandy hit, and my friends on the East Coast were devastated by it's force, I thought that might be a good idea. So, I got online and read a number of advice sites. Most of which were pretty darn hysterical. For instance, many of these websites advised me to pack a lot of videos to "keep the kids entertained." And, just how do I do that during a Zombie Apocalypse when the electricity is off?

Columbines not only re-seed, they hybridize with other Columbines, 
creating new color combos every summer.

So, I put pen to paper and calculated what all I would need to feed 5 people for 4 weeks. (I don't have 5 people in my family but you know how friendly folks can be when they run out of food.. best to plan ahead.)

Then I went shopping. For propane, candles, water purifying tablets, canned goods and... the whole time I was doing this I felt like an absolute paranoid nut bag.

Did you know that deer hate Poppies? Actually, all of those pesky vegetarians ~ deer, elk, 
moose and even my horses ~ say ix-nay to the oppies-pay. 
So, plant a drift of them when your country garden becomes a smorgasbord.

So, I was totally prepared! But, the big earthquake, tornado, day after tomorrow, whatever... didn't happen. And, me being the lazy gal that I am, I'd skip a run to the store, now and then, because I had a whole storage cabinet of groceries ~ ~ for when life as we know it no longer exists.

To some, Robins are so common they're barely noticed. But, I love 'em. 
This little babe has been hopping around my garden all week, 
greedily gobbling the worms I toss his way.

It was my daughter who asked about the emergency preparedness plan. Imagine my embarrassment when I had to tell her that we have exactly one can of black beans, for the 3 of us, forever, because I ate everything else in the cabinet. (I don't particularly care for black beans and that's why we'll still survive!)

But you're a master gardener! She exclaims. Yeah, well, if you like munching on flowers and worms, I've got you covered.


TIP:
Most vegetables are annuals, which means you have to plant them every year. Here are a few perennial veggies. Plant these once, and enjoy this harvest, year after year: 
  • Artichokes
  • Asparagus
  • Ground Nuts (called the Indian Potato, it produces beans and edible tubers)
  • Rhubarb

ANOTHER HOT TIP: EDIBLE WEEDS
You can happily dine on a lot of weeds in your garden, too. Or, my garden! Stop on by and I'll hand you a spade...
  • Dandelions: Salads, yes, but, more importantly, roasted and ground, they're an okay coffee substitute. (Now we just need to scavenge some fresh half & half.)
  • Clover: Only pink and red. Roast the flowers.
  • Lamb's Quarters: A cross between Spinach and Swiss Chard.
  • Mallow: Salads & cooked greens.
  • Plantain: Tea, salads and a terrific, natural, medicinal for open wounds. (Which could come in handy during the Zombie Apocalypse...)

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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Savor the Summit


The Grande Table...One, extra long, dining table stretching the length of Park City's Main Street..

It's called Savor the Summit and it is soooooo much fun!


The weather was fabulous (shock o' the world) and we got to enjoy the best our local restaurants have to offer... on a perfect evening beneath a blanket of stars...



Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Provincetown

An ice storm. In June. Soooo crazy.

Dark clouds hang heavy over the mountains. A deep, drenching rain nourishes the garden.

Tough little Lupines.

I flip on the furnace (in June?) and say a little prayer for the heirloom veggies I can't save. I can save quite a few, since I grow most of them in containers. Those I hauled indoors during this odd bout of winter weather.
Our beach cottage in Cape Cod
Wanna be a mountain gardener? First rule of thumb: optimists need not apply.

Cool garden gate, discovered on my travels.
No matter how warm and wonderful the weather... Mother Nature schedules one freaky cold snap, way late in the planting season. Just to torture us.


And, it's working! I find the weather quite depressing. 'Specially since we just returned from the beach. Cape Cod...

Where we held our very own lobster fest. As in gobbling every bit of lobster we could get our hands on. Boiled, broiled, breakfast, lunch & dinner! You name, we ate it! Great fun.

Provincetown shopping is such a blast.
I'd been invited out to Connecticut, for a few hard-working days of sales meetings. Here we be, working ever so hard:
And, since I was so close... I simply had to go a wee bit further and chill at the beach with my daughter.


I was anxious to get home, though. It's hard to be gone this time of year, when there is so much to be done in the garden.

But, then I get home.... and it snows?

Dang glad we had those warm days on the beach.


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Friday, May 16, 2014

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day ~ May, 2014

Alyssum Basket of Gold

Missed it. Again. Bloom Day, that is. Held every month on the 15th. But, I'm only off by a day so... Let's take a walk through my chilly garden.

Happy Daffs & Bleeding Hearts

I'm surprised. And, also impressed. The way these flowers roll with the punches.

We've had a tough spring. Cold, wet, misery.

For example, 3 days ago a hard freeze in the 20's. Today, the forecast is for 80 degrees. A crazy yin yang between winter and summer. Yet, they keep on flowering. Gotta love it.

Meadow Phlox

Buckets of Baby Hyacinth

A lawn in desperate need of mowing + two pretty doves.

Golden Currant ~ the first of the flowering shrubs to start blooming.

Flowering Almonds - isn't she a stunner? 

And, these loud and proud heirloom Tulips!

Happy Bloom Day, Everyone! Scoot on over to Carol's place to visit more participants in this monthly meme.

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Monday, May 12, 2014

The Bulb Brigade

 Monsella Tulips

 When the chilly days of April arrived, they must have decided this was a fine place to sit a spell. Because the only thing reflecting the true season, what should be the delightfully warm and sunny days of May, is the calendar hanging on my office wall.

Camassia

It's been unseasonably cold, wet, windy... And, that's made me especially proud of my tough as nails spring-flowering bulbs.

Oh, I'll never beat Mother Nature at her well-honed game. But, my mountain gardens are reaching a point where they can give her a good run for her money.

 Gladiator Allium

Bulbs, it seems, are a mountain gardener's best friend. I coax, coddle and cajole early blooming perennials, to no avail.

They won't flower until the soil warms up ~ this year, with this weather pattern, that could take until mid-June.

 Blue Star Flowers refuse to photograph well but they're quite cute along a walkway.

Allium Schubertii  ~ I think she's so cool.

Bulbs, on the other hand, don't seem nearly as dependent upon warm weather, or warm soil. Yesterday, I found some blooming beneath the snow!

Replete Daffodils 

If you live in a challenging environment, perhaps give bulbs a second look? They can turn a sadly brown garden into a talk of the town, spring blooming extravaganza.

PS: When I say 'worst garden' I'm referring to my place, not yours. :)

* Hot Tip: Plant 20 cheap daffodils, in a circle, around your special tulip bulbs. That way hungry critters can't smell those bulbs and they won't gobble that great grub.

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Sunday, May 11, 2014

Humpty Dumpty Dahlias


What a sweet surprise, when I woke up this morning. The first of the Humpty Dumpty Dahlias are blooming in the kitchen window. And, yes, I bought them because of the too cute name. We should have some pinks, reds, and purples joining that yellow flower any day now...