"What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us." – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Showing posts with label garden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label garden. Show all posts

Thursday, October 19, 2017

My Vision Has Become A Reality

And, I am so pleased !   It looks like my hard work was worth it !
It is hard to believe that the next photo is what the flower bed looked like last May .  And it is more remarkable how the Maroon Chrysanthemums have grown so robust considering they were just little salvaged neglected plants from a few years ago .  And , everyone of them is a winner.
I have so much I could post about ,  mostly good ,  but I am quite tired from doing lots of  "end of summer" outside work.  As a matter of fact ,  I have an ice pack on my low back and one on each shoulder at the moment  with the hope that they will ease some of the pain .  Oh, but I got so much done today.

There is so much going on in the world , especially lately , and I know it has an effect of my body and of course , my brain .  I really have no complaints !  There are many , many thousands (maybe millions) of people who certainly have  a reason to think their lives are unfathomable!  I pray for them to find strength , faith , kindness, love and support for improved conditions with comfort and peace.

I hope you are enjoying the change of season as I find it quite lovely with all the colorful changes wherever I look !

Blessings ,  Mary

Saturday, September 30, 2017

It's In The Pot

Crock pot , that is.

It is just a pretty basic recipe for Slow Cooker Beef Pot Roast .  The roast sits on a bed of celery chunks and baby carrots .  A thickened sauce of mushrooms, onion, garlic, tomato paste, beef broth and rosemary and thyme is poured over the seasoned and well seared beef roast . And, I plan to add some chunks of red potatoes closer to the end of cooking time .   I'm not sure what else I will prepare to go with this for dinner .  I have plenty of time to figure that out.
Finally, I have been able to finish planting the Lavender "Grosso" plants.  There were only four plants, but OH what a lot of work to get them planted.  I'm done digging rock for a while !!
They should do well  -  with all my TLC in helping them to get a good start.
While I was checking the Zucchini I was happy to see this little visitor !
The garden is slowly going to sleep for the winter
Before long the Burning Bush will be a fall of crimson red.  At this time of year , I always enjoy seeing it turning colors through the dining room window.

I would like to ask for some positive thoughts sent my way as I am trying to recover from a very disappointing phone call from my twin brother on our birthday .  It has been years since I have heard from him and he continues to be arrogant, egotistical, self-serving and very unkind !  Oh, if you can,  please send me a couple hugs, too.

Wishing each and every one of you a very enjoyable weekend.


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Love Love Fall Color

I love love love all the fabulous fall colors at the front of my property .  The Yellow Chrysanthemums are blooming and the Maroon Chrysanthemums that are spaced between the Yellow are coming soon .   We are expecting a warmer week into the nineties that will help them to bloom .

Some twenty years ago, Oleander plants were planted around my property on the outside of my fence.  In the past few weeks I have been able to clean up all the weeds and stuff at the base as well as prune the very large shrubs .  Last Spring the weeds were so high that I had to "weed whack" .  I hope this coming year I can control them better .   I am very happy with how it looks now.

The Autumn  Joy Sedum color is changing into its fall shade of a deeper pink .  So pretty!  

Finally, the luscious looking tomatoes are turning RED .  I look forward to making a Tomato Tart or something interesting .  I bet I am going to enjoy the delightful home garden tomato flavor !

Most of us enjoy a surprise and I have another little garden surprise .  At the time that I purchased the tomato plants, I also tossed in my cart one zucchini plant .  All of  these were little 4 inch potted plants .  With no  planning , I just popped the zucchini into my strawberry barrel that was doing very little in the growing department .

I think the wine barrel looks so nice with the strawberry plant expanding over the edges .  And, that little zucchini plant is no longer little!
 Look ! ! !  A zucchini !
 And, another one on the way !
Hopefully, there will be enough to add as a side dish to a Pot Roast dinner I am planning for the near future .  The fall weather says to me that it is time to do some yummy cooking.

Sadly , a little neighborhood nursery that always stocked top quality nursery stock has lost their lease and will be closing .  The nursery sits on a site of large acreage that will be going up for sale .  As a result they have a 25% off sale on every thing .  I stopped in and bought four Lavender plants that I am planting between some daylilies along a pathway .
It is taking me a long time to dig the holes to plant them because there is so much rock to do battle with .  You can see how dense the rock is in these photos .  I also have to buy some planter mix to give them support to hopefully continue to grow into healthy plants.

I think the contrast of foliage color will look good .
The White Clematis continues to bloom profusely on the fence behind the White Garden.

And, and, and, believe it or not, I baked some yummy blueberry muffins.  The cooler weather is coaxing me into the kitchen.
I hope your week is going well and you are starting to enjoy the definite change of season.

Today was my 78th Birthday.   It was just a usual day-no celebration.  Life is what it is.


Friday, September 15, 2017

Looks Good Doesn't It - And More

With all the hard work/labor I have been doing  it does not leave me much time and energy to do much cooking. If any at all.  It is a good thing I have a microwave.  Other than popping something in the microwave, fresh fruit has been my "go to food" along with cheese and crackers.  It is surprising to me how many types of crackers are available !

I must not forget to mention how much I am enjoying hand picking and eating my ripened figs directly from the tree , especially when I am doing the daily times two garden watering.  They are so sweet and delicious .
 I am not sure if I will be able to do much baking or cooking with the figs this year . I am really working hard to do a lot more outdoor maintenance and general cleanup .

Since I am very overdue in stocking my freezer with some "make ahead dinners" I made myself get busy and change that.  How's this?

Chicken Thighs with Mushrooms and Shallots

Now ,  look at these wonderful Tomatoes in my garden !  I have two plants and they are both producing Heirloom Tomatoes .   They are taking a long time to turn red and the weather is starting to cool .  Maybe , I will have to make Fried Green Tomatoes .  I would like that , too .

This has been quite exciting because I bought the little plants on impulse .  I must say that I have been very good about regular watering and fertilizing .   The TLC makes a difference!

By now ,  you know Me And My Rocks !!!
Well, I have been working on some of the path borders .  I find it quite enjoyable and I like the various colors .  It feels very creative .  Kind of like a "Rock Mason" .
And ,  sometimes the rocks need to be moved .  I can do wonders with a crow bar working just a little at a time!  I limit myself to the short bar because I don't want to get myself into trouble with a long pry bar.  Remember ,  I have a back injury !!!   Aren't these beauties ?  Yes, I really am a "crazy lady" .

Remember these flowers ?  Gomphrena "Fireworks"  that I mail ordered last year ?  You know, the ones I foolishly cut back in late fall.
This Post will refresh your memory.   And, then  this Post will also.

Ta - da !!  Would you believe it ?  This next photo shows a couple flowers from my plants this year !!!
I think they are so very pretty and they sway in the breeze. 
They were slow to show any growth .  But four out of the six plants did fairly well .
Along the way ,  I learned that they are an annual plant in some parts of the country .  They do not over-winter very well .  And, when they do it is because they are self seeding .  Seeds are available as well as plants at certain times of the year by mail order .  Lessons learned.  We'll wait and see what next year brings.

Well, that's a little more catch up on what is keeping me so busy at this time of year.

Wishing you a good end of Summer Weekend.   The California weather is wonderful ,  at least for a few days.


Friday, July 7, 2017


These flowers would have looked nice with my 4th of July blog post with the red, white and blue Patriotic theme.  I guess they are more of a lavender/purple and deep pink with white ones.  But, aren't they pretty?  Yes, they are from my garden. The white glads are certainly more robust than the others and they are planted in a different area. Soil and light exposure sure makes a difference in the garden.   I have always enjoyed the beauty of Gladiolus.  And, I am so happy to have them growing again in my garden this year.

It's a very very hot day, again, today.   If I miss a spot watering I certainly know about it the next day. For the most part, my garden is all hand watering. The limited sprinkling system on the one side (where the valve broke) hasn't worked for the past two years. I just have not had the time to work on it.  But, on the other side of the house, several years ago I made a watering system with PVC that generally does a good job, especially when I run out of time. It is not the most water conservative method but on occasion it sure helps.

Sometimes gardening (for that matter, living) on a tiny budget sure - - - - - I guess it is best that I don't say the word that fits best ! ! ! ! ! !    I think you get my point!

(photo from three years ago)

Buy the way, the broken water valve has been temporarily repaired by me. First, PVC glue was used but did not control the leakage, not heavy duty enough.  Then I found some plumbers epoxy putty that I remembered I had in the garage. Boy! does that stuff work and it sure gets hard if you can control and stop the water that may be flowing. Surface must be dry and you have to work fast. Hopefully, in the not too distant future, I can hire someone who has time to work on my "water issues"!

How about ending with another photo of my Gladiolus from last year in a more formal and fun arrangement.  Yes, I do enjoy creating floral vignettes. I guess I should do it more often.

I hope you are enjoying your summer day and looking forward to your weekend.


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Gladiolus Serviving The Heat Wave And Gushing Water Valve

Loveliness rules! In spite of the horrendous heat wave  I have been able to save the Gladiolus with the aid of a little sun protection.
It looks like there will be at least 12 long stems of White Gladiolus this year. When I bought the bulbs the package showed white flowers with a deep red center.
But, it looks like they are going to be all white and that is just fine. The bulbs were from Van Bloem Gardens and named Flevo Eyes. I don't see any red in the flower throat! This is the first time that something like this has happened in all the time I have been gardening. Probably packaged incorrectly. Little surprises! ! !
 They look so tall and majestic - - - don't they?

Gosh, I sure love my garden. It gives me so much comfort. The year has been so very difficult for me in many ways and I am so grateful for the pleasure my garden gives me

Yesterday I was able to buy some more planting mix, garden soil and peat moss so I can work in some more flower beds that need some invigorating.  The clay and rocky soil is so difficult to work with. For optimum results the garden needs a lot more amendments.
As I previously mentioned, the Fig Tree is huge. We can't even see the Angel Statuary at the base of the tree in this photo. It has really grown a lot since last year. And it looks like there will be a lot of fruit. I noticed the Blue Jay birds showing more interest in the tree lately. It is time for me to put up some silver reflective tape to deter their interest.

All the rains this past year have certainly given a pleasant dimension to the garden this year.  Everything is looking healthier and more abundant. So nice!

😟  Lately, it seems like each day I am faced with a new challenge. Today was no different. About mid-day I heard what sounded like water running forcefully. I quickly went outside to the main water valve on the side of the house to find lots of water gushing from a PVC water pipe valve next to the main valve. It is the valve pictured at the bottom of the next photo where you can see the red lever. It was installed years ago for the sprinkler system. 

This is the opening where the water was gushing from. This black pug was forced out and landed on the sidewalk. It looked like it had been glued in with PVC cement.
So, at this point, I am without water until a new valve is installed!  Stay tuned ! ! !

I'm tired and going to bed!


I Think I Got Bumped To The Bottom

I Think I Got Bumped To The Bottom
Did I do Something Wrong?

While You Weren't Looking

While You Weren't Looking
I Went Shopping - Thinking of the Holidays