Holy Mole!!

July 24, 2007

Indifferent to my negligence, the vegetable garden has continued to produce...as if I have time to harvest! I'm going to have to get out there soon because there is some mean salsa to be made.....

Pepper 'Hole Mole', All-American Selections winner, really has a great flavor and produces heavily.
Anyone need some Habaneros? Boy that salsa is going to burn.....

Pepper_holy_mole Habanero_ripe

What’s Bloomin?

July 24, 2007

I know, I know! It's been a while since I updated. It's been a busysummer! I've barely had time to spend in the garden, but it has marchedon without me. Here are a few current bloomers. Dwarf Philippine Lilyare always a pleasant and unique surprise in the late summer garden.This dwarf variety is rare and not typically available. I've let thelast couple of seasons go by without collecting its seeds, but I'll domy best to get them this summer.  Rudbeckia, Centauria and Zebra grassare a great summer combo. Moon Vine has begun creeping to the upstairsbalcony. Thunbergia is popping into bloom. This massive vine, when infull bloom, has caused strangers to stop and knock on my door. "What isthis beautiful plant????" Talk about making a gardener's day,....


Month of Purple…......

June 2, 2007

Salvia_henry_deulbergApril is usually peak spring bloom time in my garden, with a crazy explosion of colors. While I try to stick to a cool color scheme, bulbs are one of my obsessions. So I end up of with lots of "unapproved" colors because I just can't help but acquire new varieties! Also, I'm obsessed with peach colored roses and they too are at their peak in April.

After this somewhat gaudy spring show, and the month of May begins, my garden takes a big deep breath. May becomes a transitional time. There are usually several weeks to a month of green foliage and the promise of better things to come. By the end of May, however, many of my summer blooming perennials begin to put on their show. That is when I'm reminded that I like to plant purple! It always makes me laugh a little (how much purple there is) but the onset of cool, calming blue and purple blooms is just in time for the arrival of Texas summer heat.

The Scabiosa never really stopped blooming, then the purple asters decided to make a spring appearance. Veronica has been waiting for this moment since last summer and makes for the prettiest contrast against Artemesia. The arrival of the dwarf balloon flowers brought both sets of neighbors over to ask "what is that beautiful purple thing?!!" Salvia 'Henry Deulberg' has been blooming all spring and will continue to do so all summer. The Mexican Blue Sage (Salvia c.)has the prettiest powder blue blooms. Catmint 'Walker's Low' creates a powdery cloud of lavender flowers that will bring on the biggest bee party you'll ever see. Salvia g. 'Black and Blue' still amazes me with its "blueness". Salvia f. 'Evolution' is similar to 'Victoria', but with darker purple blooms and a more dense compact growth habit. French hollyhocks have always been a favorite of mine because they are so easy to grow. These are just a few samples  of some of my favorites. Also in blooming in blue/purples are spiderwort, Baptisia a. hydrangeas, purple oxalis, light blue petunias, lobelia, althea and more. Ah.....so serene.















June 2, 2007

BottletreeMy yard needed a little more funk, so here is my new bottle tree I just installed. It resides behind a planter my neighbors have named "Hairyette Potter"...I love my neighbors!  They are on a mission now to get me new and interesting bottles. I promised them we could do red and green at Christmas....

I'm going to do some planting around the base of the bottle tree. I haven't yet decided what exactly I'll put there. Hairyette Potter is planted with Mexican Feather grass, which is still fairly small. So I'll choose something that will provide some contrast behind the grass.

Bottletree2The blue bottles catch the light and are so pretty in the sunshine and brighten up the yard when its overcast. Traditionally, bottle trees were used to trap evil spirits so they wouldn't enter your home. I can't wait to see what kind of little evils I'll catch......

My Babies….

June 2, 2007

Cooking straight out of the garden is wonderful. There is nothing better than to be able to run out to the garden and gather up all the tomatoes and peppers you need for dinner. Or fresh basil for instant homemade pesto. I'll probably be cooking squash out of the garden tonight (to my husband's dismay...he is not yet a fan of squash...)  Here are some photos of a few of my babies on their way....'Yellow Pear' squash, 'Peter Pan' squash, 'Fairy Tale' Eggplant, 'Celebrity' Tomatoes, lots of peppers, purple bush beans, heirloom corn, okra, just to show a few. 



Gratuitous shots…

May 5, 2007

This is why Iceland Poppies and Mexican Feather Grass are such a fab combo.....


Veggie Garden

May 5, 2007

The rainy cool weather this spring has definitely gotten the veggie garden off to a good start. Lot's of "babies" on the way. Here are some (windy) pictures of a few things. Despite my caging efforts on the strawberries, the birds managed to clean both plantings totally clean of my first crop. Devastating! So, this morning, I'll be double caging them to try and fend off the attack. There are new berries forming, so I've got to get to it quick. Of course, they only steal them riiiiiight before they are just ripe. Sneaky. The Rhubarb is quite robust. I'll be harvesting some in the next few days and will start canning it. My goal is to get a strawberry & rhubarb pie out of the garden this year! The tomatoes are in high gear this year. (I attribute that to my fantabulous NHG organic veggie food...). The first on the way are 'Sugary' and 'Sun Sugar' a yellow variety.  I'll be trying to can as many tomatoes as I can get this year. Actually, I've got all the ingredients in the garden for a good salsa, so I'll probably make and can that up too. Tiny baby squash are on the way. I have 'Peter Pan' and a couple other varieties. Potatoes and horseradish are growing nicely. Will be looking for a fall harvest there. Corn seedlings are up to about 4" tall, as well as purple beans, snap peas and one last crop of lettuce. The first 3 banana peppers of the season are ready, but the pepper plants won't really take off until the heat comes on. Anyone need pepper sauce or pickled peppers? I'll have plenty! I decided to espalier fruit trees all along the NE side of our yard - which has an ugly chain link fence. If I let them grow standard, they'd shade the veggie garden. So this way, I can camouflage the fence, keep in the sun, and get better fruit production. So far I've planted a pear and a peach. I'll probably plant another pear and a plum. I've also planted blackberries and raspberries along the remainder of the side fence and along the back fence. We have great neighbors and they said they wouldn't mind sharing the "fence fruit"!

Strawberries Rhubarb Tomato_baby Squash_babyVeggie_beds_2Pear_espallierLeeks

Teacup Fetish….

April 21, 2007

Well, as some of my friends know, I have sort of a teacup fetish. I see teacups and the "girl" in me comes out. I don't know where this fetish came from....or why it exists. I was always a tomboy, so maybe this it is some throwback to what I "didn't" do as a little girl. I love antique teacups, yard sale teacups, modern teacups...you name it. I was looking at a stack of my cups and  thought, hey, I'll bet these would make cute vases! So now some of my blooms have a new home. The regular sized teacups are perfect for displaying large double roses. Especially if you just want to cut one or two so you don't leave your garden bare. Tiny teacups let you display your tiny flowers, like violas.  I know...its sooooo Martha.

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