Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Until Next Year September

Indeed September shares with us two seasons: the end of
summer and the beginning of fall. It gives us a little pause
time as we wind up the hot weather season with all its bright
colors and sunshine, and allows us to get ready for the cool
and breezy changing days. And with fall comes the excitement
of the holiday season.

This pause will also give us a little extra time for cleanup in
the garden and yard. How about a little help in organizing
those duties for you this fall. Depending on your landscape
you may need to add and adjust .

We don't like to let go of the growing season as the fresh taste
of home-grown veggies is always better and it's fun to grow
your own foods. Take advantage the cool-weather crops and
sow some radishes, spinach and kale, parsley, cabbage and 
leeks. To extend a harvest you also might consider a cold frame.

If you have an abundance of fresh vegetables and herbs, consider
preserving, canning, freezing and drying. How wonderful to have
some home-grown bounty for the next several months. Check out
the garden sites on your computer for some techniques and how 
to tips. 

Remember apples are in season. They're healthy and taste so
good in all those fall recipes. 

Thanks for stopping by.
Visit  for a new easy
blueberry pie recipe.
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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

We Welcome The Change

I'm just a little excited. Do you want to guess? You remembering
your Science? Good for you…tomorrow September 22, 10:21 a.m.
The autumnal equinox arrives…yes, happens every year about
this time, at the same moment everywhere. Autumn equinox (fall)
in the northern hemisphere, and vernal equinox (spring) in the 
southern. Forget that temperatures will climb into the 80's over 
the next few days. I'm clinging to the astronomical calendar. It 
will all work out.

Oh, I know days are shorter with less light, but I'm craving
the crisp chill of mornings, coming in from my walk and
thinking about baked apples, and putting on a pot of some
hearty soup. I'm excited to start fall decorating which seems
to shout home and cozy and warmth. 

I'll put away the swim suits and shorts, and start thinking
fleece jackets and sweats. I'm heading to the garden center
for my pumpkins and corn shocks. Harvest thyme is here.

"By all those lovely tokens September days
are here, with summer's best of weather
and autumn's best of cheer."

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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Simple Amazing Joy

The caterpillar found its spot on the drying dill. I watched
it move slowly up and down the stems as if it was testing the 
strength of the slender branch. I was so excited hoping we
would see its transformation. (See the July 15th post for
the full story on butterflies.)

It was just about two weeks later. I saw a flutter. Was this
the butterfly? I approached slowly, so afraid it would fly
off. How had I missed this. Just the night before we checked
that tender bag, thinking no way would we get our butterfly.

Carefully I put my finger alongside the stem, again thinking
it would fly off. Slowly it climbed onto my finger. It felt wet
and sluggish.

I was taking pictures with my left hand. My right hand I
held steady. The wings opened and closed as it moved
across my hand.

It happened fast…off it went to a lower stem then fluttered... 
gone. I like to think it went to my zinnias or the cone flowers
enjoying its taste of freedom and flight.  I was grateful...

Thanks for stopping by….
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Thursday, September 8, 2016

September..Our Entry Into Fall

"Ah, September! You are the doorway to the season that
awakens my soul… but I must confess that I love you only
because you are a prelude to my beloved October
                                                          -Peggy Toney Horton

No, not quite Autumn yet. If I believed what some of the
blogs were saying, I'd be knee deep in leaves, sipping
cider, decorating my porch with pumpkins I've grown
and harvested, baking pies with apples strewn all over
my yard, and gazing lovingly at the fall sunsets, while
wrapping my sweater about my shoulders. WRONG!
It's hot, humid and dry. We've got some work to do
in our yards and gardens before we sail off into the
blissfully beautiful harvest thyme of the fall season.

Hubby hard at work trimming out branches from
several trees. Yard maintenance continues with 
mowing, trimming and watering the lawn as
needed. We will have our work cut out for us as
you can see in the pictures below. 

My saga of the mole/vole attack on the lower part of 
the backyard finally came to an end. Having called
in Jack from  he set the
plan of attack in motion. Traps were set, one rodent
was caught and long story short, after about three
weeks, all activity stopped. Thanks Jack!!

I even sent Sam (the Pug) in, to try and sniff out and 
possibly snuff out those horrendous creatures. 

He decided to be on guard duty and watch for any
unusual activity. Notice he's ready to strike

Fall is a good time to reseed your lawn and to work
on those troublesome spots. Weed control, grub
control, aerating should be happening this month. 
Hubby has the list, but it's break time right now,
they've been working pretty hard.

September you are most welcome, and I'm ready for fall.
The Autumn Equinox happens on September 23.
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Friday, August 26, 2016

August Birthdays and It's a Dog Day

Today is National Dog Day. It's their day to be celebrated. They
give us unconditional love. Look into those faces, those eyes, you 
see that love. They give us comfort and devotion without question.

Extra treats indeed.

Celebrating two August birthdays. Son Benjamin on the 26th and
daughter Shakira the 27th. We are so blessed. They have given us
much joy and happiness.

Aunt Shakira and Papa Ben with grandson Ethan.

Here's a little something I put together with my olive tree 
branches and tiny flowers from the garden. Also enjoy
the last of my blue and pink hydrangeas. I've been cutting
for indoor display and drying a lot since they have been 
blooming. The lime green are still going strong. 

Visit for a new recipe
Next up garden updates and a new month
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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly In Gardening

Obsessed? Probably just a little, ummm maybe a little more. I
worry about every little ant, grasshopper, beetle, leaf damage,
fungus, on and on. There are pests, there are garden diseases.
If you have flowers, grow vegetables, then you're going to have
these problems.

We need to be educated…to know our bugs. Are they all bad?
No. Inspect your garden regularly… you want to detect
problems early on. Once you've identified your pest, the easier
it will be to manage. There are chemical methods and organic
earth-friendly methods. I leave that up to you.

There are beneficial insects that play a role in your garden.
They may also be a predator to the bad bugs. The trick is to
understand the difference. Visit the internet, lots of pictures,
advice and suggestions. Plant a variety of things that will 
attract the goods bugs. They will need food like nectar and
pollen. Plant wisely. Some suggestions: Shasta daisies, asters,
cone flowers, fennel, and dill.

If we were to wipe out insects alone on
this planet, the rest of life and humanity
with it would mostly disappear from the
land. Within a few months.  -E.O. Wilson

Word of the day: Blossom-End Rot
Noun. A disease caused by a deficiency of calcium particularly in
tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, and eggplant. The plant is
unable to absorb enough calcium from the soil. If you see a dark
rotting spot on the bottom of your tomato, that's blossom-end rot.
The tissues of the fruit are breaking down. Also water 
fluctuations, stress, too much fertilizer can also be the cause. 
You can purchase a calcium solution to help. Seems to work 
better on tomatoes than on other vegetables, but ask your garden 
center for help.

Now for the ugly, see that picture……...
Yep, guess what returned to our lower backyard!!! "Who you
gonna call?" Jack from on board
as I type this. More to come next week. 

Thanks for stopping by.

Stop by for a new recipe!

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Thursday, August 11, 2016

Why Do I Garden

I've talked about the beauty of flowers, about my love for
gardening and growing herbs and vegetables. (See the post
Gardening Is My Thing.) I wanted to expand on that thought
and just share my personal thoughts on why I garden. 

Just find Mother Nature's address and
come and get your happiness.
                                                               -Shirley Temple

Yes, gardening is a great relaxer, it's exercise, it offers 
satisfaction and gives rewards. Who doesn't appreciate 
picking a fresh tomato or cutting a bouquet of zinnias
and daisies. Gardening is my own personal therapy,
it calms me, offers solitude and keeps me distracted 
from the stresses of life when I need it to.

I like to think I have a relationship with Mother Nature.
I have to be outside. I like the sun shining, but I also love
a cloudy day and a good thunderstorm. I've been known
to work my yard and garden in the rain, yes love it.

Our planet's precious soil nourishes
the roots of people as well as plants.
                                      -Katherine Robertson-Pilling 

It makes me so happy to know my daughter Shakira
finds satisfaction in working in her yard and creating
her flower beds. When she said she was interested in
possibly, maybe growing some herbs, I was so excited.
Maybe I passed along my love of gardening gene!!

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