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Tag Archives: garden

Sharon, Susan and a Swan

Steven has been wanting to get a picture of our Rose of Sharon in the back yard.  I finally got one today and thought, hey, let’s do a Backyard Picture Post.

One day, I think, “No blooms this year.” The next day, “Wow!”

My mom gave me a shoot of her Rose of Sharon some years ago.  Hers is enormous and gorgeous by now.  Ours got mowed down a few times as a wee sprout.  However, it grew back each time, better than before.  First it was big enough so Steven noticed it and didn’t mow it down.  Then it was so big he couldn’t have mowed it down if he tried!  According to Steven, the plant was saying, “Mow ME down, will you?”

While I was taking the picture of the Rose of Sharon, I noticed the swan in our neighbors’ pool which Steven has been envying (I have been envying the pool myself).

The picture is a little dark, but I wanted to share the swan.

I had also been wanting to take another picture of our Black-eyed Susans, which are looking better and better.

I don’t know if you can see that a little Queen Anne’s Lace has worked it way in.

We originally purchased the Black-eyed Susans at a sale to benefit the Herkimer County Humane Society, back in 2011 (are you impressed that I remember the actual year?  I am).  They have gotten bigger and spread.  Now they are battling it out with the chives for control of that little patch.  While I was admiring  them, I noticed some little yellow flowers behind the garage.

The little blooms look better in person, but if you want to stop over and see them, please call first.

I really need to clean out behind the garage, cutting down a pricker bush that is expanding to tree-like proportions.  We just never see that part when we are sitting on the deck, and, you know how it goes: out of sight, out of what’s left of my mind.  Then I remembered the Brown-eyed Susans, which grew with no input on our part.

The green shoots are part of some irises which are done blooming now.

The Brown-eyed Susans are growing in two places in our yard, so I took two pictures.

The green stuff in the background is the beginning of some trees that I need to get out from under my deck.

Some years ago, I read the Rudbeckia is a good plant for bees.  Imagine my surprise when a guy at a greenhouse told me that Rudbeckia is Brown-eyed Susans.  It sounds so much fancier!

So this is how pretty my yard looks in mid-August.  I wonder what September will bring. Will it be worth a blog post? We’ll see.


If Only I Could Write a Blooming Blog Post

I ran today, thinking I would sneak in another running commentary.  It was a dull and boring run.  At least, for a while I enjoyed it quite a bit.  But I think it was only interesting to me as I was running it and it would not entertain anybody, least of all myself, to make a blog post about it.  Still, a blog post must be made (because I say it does, that’s why!). I am currently cooking, so I could do a cooking post. If only I were doing something more interesting than heating up leftovers.

If only I could bestir myself sufficiently to take the Tablet out to the yard.  At least one iris bloomed today.  I posted a picture of the buds the other day.  I think some readers would be pleased to be posted on current developments.  Just a moment first, to stir the pot on the stove and lower the heat under it.  And find the Tablet (as you may recall, I have a habit of misplacing it).

Maybe if I would have stood on my head…

I guess it’s not the best picture, because the stem is kind of bent over.  Believe me, I know how it feels!  Perhaps I should put a tomato cage over it or something. Steven arrived home while I was taking the picture, and I was able to assure him that I TOLD the young man who mows the lawn not to mow down the daisies, as Steven had asked him to do.  You see, this nice young man who lives across the street offered to mow our lawn.  In addition to being quite busy and (on my part, at least) a little lazy, we were happy to encourage this example of young entrepreneurship.  The first time he did it, he did not mow the daisies in our front yard, which have become a little extensive this year.  Steven told him to mow them this time.  At the last minute, I reprieved them, though, because they were just too pretty.  Here is a picture.

He loves me, he loves me not…

In front of the daisies is a peony bush that magically appeared after we had sufficiently discouraged the wild day lilies.  I insisted it had been planted by my stalker, a statement that has yet to be disproved.  The peonies have not bloomed yet, but look how many buds:

It started as one lone stalk and blossom, and there’s a lesson for all of us.

The main problem with the daisies is that they hide the lilies of the valley, which are also multiplying exponentially.   However, I’m finding those blooms don’t show very well even without anything in front of the greenery.  I tried to get a picture.

If you look really close, you can just see a few bells.

I’ve picked a few lilies of the valley and brought them inside.  I used a shot glass for a vase, because they are so small (Steven collects shot glasses, although we rarely do a shot of anything).  I love the smell.  I tired to get a picture, but I fear they were backlit and do not show.

It’s frogs on either side of the flowers. Steven collects those, too.

We also have some daisies inside.  Steven put them in water with blue food coloring, at my suggestion.  I think they’re pretty.

Oh, yeah, he loves me.

So for not a running post and not a cooking post, I think this makes a pretty good flower post.  We’ll call it a win for Non-Sequitur Thursday.


I Am a Writer. I Mean a Blogger.

It’s spearmint. I’d like to get some peppermint.

This is a picture I took yesterday with my Tablet and neglected to include in my blog post.  I realized I had left it out before I hit publish but I couldn’t figure out where to add it in.  I figured I could use it in a future blog post.  I thought it might be further in the future than the next day, but, well, it is Wuss-out Wednesday, and, once again, I got nothin’.

I really, really do got nothin’ today.  Plenty of nothin’ as the song goes.  Seriously, I am forcing my fingers to keep moving from key to key to put in the words you are reading now.  When I pause to think of the next sentence, it is difficult to get started again.  This has been happening to me all day.  This morning when I was driving to work, I stopped for a stop sign.  I did not stay stopped long enough to be late for work, but I had to remind myself to go.  I did manage to get work done while at work, but it was not easy.

What is this malaise?  Am I not taking enough vitamins?  Is it that last ten pounds I can’t seem to lose (oh, all right, 15 pounds, sheesh!)?  Not enough exercise?  Poor quality sleep?  Or am I just a big fat lazy bum who was not meant to be a blogger much less a writer?  SAY IT AIN’T SO!!!

Now there’s a point to ponder, within that welter of questions:  why did I say “a blogger much less a writer”?  Am I saying a blogger is not a real writer?  What makes a “real writer” anyways?  I don’t imagine I can answer these questions without resorting to truisms or cliches (another point to ponder:  what’s the difference between a truism and a cliche?).  Not on Wuss-out Wednesday, especially.

I think I’ll go make myself a cup of mint tea.


Working Hard in the Yard and Garden

How about a gardening post in lieu of my usual Wrist to Forehead Sunday. I was about to put a question mark, but since I intend to write it before receiving any possible replies, I decided against it.

Perhaps yard work is a better term than gardening. The reader may judge. Steven went to work at nine as usual. I went to the store and picked up a few items (not blogworthy, except for the nice conversation I had with a lady in the yarn aisle), then returned home determined to do something useful before Steven’s return.

I had my prescription sunglasses on, because it was quite a bright day (cue unkind remarks about how I’m not). I thought, why not add my crazy old lady hat to the ensemble (pronounced “ahn-sahm,” as the French do) and mow the lawn?

The lawn had been mowed nicely last Saturday by two neighborhood boys. It could go a few more days before it really needed it, but I find if I’m going to use the non-power mower, sooner is better. I have to use the non-power mower because I am quite incapable of getting the power mower started. I like it because it is quieter, and I get that little frisson of virtue because I am being “green.” Also it is good exercise, which I sorely need.

So there I was, pushing and pushing. The lawn didn’t look too bad. Maybe I would write a blog post about it (and I am!). I still need to do something about the edges of the lawn, but I had another notion for the rest of my outdoor activities for the day.

When we moved into our house, the front yard contained a whole lot of orange day lilies. Not the short, nice ones with spiky leaves on the stems that I see in other people’s yards. They were tall and, quite frankly, a little blowsy. Steven mowed them down, except for a big patch at the side of our porch. There they still grow, along with some ferns of jungle proportions. Not that I’ve ever been to the jungle, but with a plastic gorilla and a Barbie doll, I bet we could film a cool version of King Kong.

Last year I went and cut down all that I could. It was late in the season, so that was all I did. This time I had another idea. First I went and pulled up or cut down everything I could. Then I found an old shower curtain we had in the garage and put that down. That would keep any of that crap from growing back. I had to cut the shower curtain and arrange it. This was going to work.

Next I pulled out a bag of mulch we hadn’t used last year (or maybe even the year before. Oh dear). Three cubic feet, could I drag it out front without hurting my back. Yes I could! I am da woman! I spread it around as best I could. Then realized I should have smoothed out the shower curtain a little better. No matter. I pulled the ends and did the best I could.

The edges of the shower curtain still showed. I had put rocks down on the corners. Could I find some more rocks and cover the edges? That would look nice.

Something else I did when we first started working in the yard was collect rocks. When I would be digging up areas to plant stuff, if I dug up rocks I would save them for future use. There are some in a ring around our rhododendron now. Others reside in a heap under the deck awaiting my need.

Walking back and forth from the deck to the porch probably constituted good exercise, especially carrying rocks of varying sizes. I was careful every time I straightened up not to hit my stupid head (which I am unfortunately prone to do).

Oh dear, I think this made a better story in my head while I was doing it than it does now while I’m writing it. Never mind, I’m almost done. I still need a few more rocks (cue jokes about how I DON’T need more rocks in my head), and then I need to put something on the mulch to be decorative. Some potted flowers or perhaps a stone garden statue.

It’s too bad I don’t have the proper camera and know how to post a picture. Then again, maybe your mental picture looks better than what I actually did and would only disappoint you. At any rate, this is the longest Sunday post I have done in a long time. If you’re still with me, enjoy the rest of your weekend. If you stopped reading two or three paragraphs ago, I still wish you well.