Thursday, August 28, 2014

Weather, August Chores, And Pictures

It's what we use to call, in nurse-speak,                                                              
the 3H enema. Simply, high, hot, and
hell-of-a-lot, (excuse my language).
That's my thoughts on what we're                               
dealing with here weather wise. I say
"uncle" yep you've made your point.
The heat ok, we can take it, but the
humidity… 90% with the dew point
about as high. That's at 8:30 in the
morning. Sam, the Pug, is visiting so
we start out early to beat the heat for
a morning walk. Not fun. Weather
forecasters say wacky weather..that's
really scientific. Soooo, hot is cold,
and cold is hot. Get use to it readers..
more to come.
How to beat the heat, Sam style

August Chores

Probably watering is your biggest chore
right now. Continue to weed and pull
out the droopy, dying annuals. Clean
up as you go, turning the mulch. Early
mornings is the best time, you can get
the garden pests (beetles, worms) too. Harvest the bounty: (tomatoes yum)
use what you can and share what you don't need. Make some zucchini
bread. Prune branches of trees, bushes, shrubs, as needed but no fertilizer
for them not till spring . If you compost add to that. Add your"cooked"
compost to your cleaned out garden bed when your gardening is done.
I'm still cutting some lavender, zinnias and hydrangea. I want the
zinnias to seed. I save seed for next year. I let the perennial echinacea
and blackeyed susans stand until late Sept. You can still do another sowing
of crops for late fall harvest…radishes, kale, lettuce, beets,etc. Check your
seed packets. Clean-up makes for a better looking yard, good exercise too.
In my "garden" we are doing a major tear down, and putting away the
decorative yard art. Notice the leaves changing a little..summer is winding
down, school has started. You can begin to think bulbs right now. Decide
what you want, you can order from the catalogues right now for fall
planting. Whether your cleaning up, pruning, or sowing, there's still lots
to do..but remember let's enjoy the outdoors while we can.
My Zinnias
A porch view

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Book Review #5 And Blueberry Crostata

I was drawn to this book by the cover.
Such vibrant colors. I could almost
pick up a tasty looking morsel. When
I saw the water color palette, the book
was sold. It does not disappoint.
Author Erin Gleeson states on the
cover, her cookbook contains 'simple
vegetarian recipes from her cabin in
the woods'. With a hundred recipes,
each displayed over two pages, there
are five sections: appetizers, cocktails,
salads, vegetables, and sweets. Simple
ingredients, illustrations are
beautifully laid out. The recipes  could
not be easier to follow, fun to read,
and are healthy. She uses local
produce and shares pictures of
her home, husband, and woodland surroundings, plus she tells her story of how it all began. A highlight….discovering she has a blog, Take a look, I'm sure you'll enjoy. I'm going to to try the Rosemary Shortbread first. I'll let you know how it turns out. A wonderful book, loved it.

After enjoying my new cookbook, I decided
it was thyme to share a recipe. Blueberry
Crostata. Easy and fast. Love blueberries
but you can use cherries, peaches, a lot
of fresh fruit available right now. See
the recipe on EARTHLY DELIGHTS!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Herb Garden Design & Rosemary

Since I been sharing herb info, I thought it was
thyme to offer a layout for an herb garden. I
came up with a circle plan with four parts, has
a center that can hold something decorative..
size can be your choice. Just make sure all
looks equaled and balanced. Pick your site,
there should be at least 5 hours of sun, and
mark the garden out with stakes or paint.
Unless you're doing raised beds, start digging
and add  soil and organic matter as needed.
Herbs like well drained soil. They don't
require a lot of care just  cut and pinch back.
I would use gravel or tiny pebbles for the
center and paths. This allows you to walk on
the path easily and provide contrast. Decide
if you want a theme garden, culinary, or
perhaps a medicinal type. Get to know your      
herbs and their uses. Your herb garden can
be your place of retreat and meditation, so
make it your own. Perhaps a bench, a water
feature or small potting table. Herb gardens
can be useful, aromatic, fun, healing and
"Rosemary is for remembrance" I'm sure
you've read that somewhere. Such an
aromatic herb. It's also the herb of choice
for topiaries. You might also see it worn in a
wreath by a bride. A woody perennial that
that has evergreen, needle-like leaves, it likes the sun and well drained soil.
You'll need to prune to encourage branching. Versatile rosemary is used for
cooking, crafting and in southern states, you may see bushes of rosemary all
year long. Rosemary also contains anti-inflammatory compounds, and has been shown to increase blood flow to the head and brain. The leaves are good
in chicken, lamb, and pork as well as in Italian dishes. Wonderful added to
breads, butters, and oils for fantastic flavorings. Rosemary twigs can be
used as a toothpick for appetizers and the long stems can be used as
skewers for kabobs. The herb can be used fresh or dried, but fresh is preferable. It is an essential  part of 'herbes de provence'. I always have
a rosemary topiary. Although difficult in the winter, indoors, once it's been outside again it will thrive. Rosemary leaves can be saved by placing the leaves in ice cube trays with some olive oil, and frozen.





  "Speaking of the powers of Rosemary, it overtoppeth 
    all the flowers in the garden, boasting man's rule.
    It helpeth the brain, strengtheneth the memorie, and 
    is very medicinable for the head. Another property
    of the rosemary is, it affects the heart."
                                                    Roger Hacket (1607)


Thursday, August 7, 2014

It's A Blooming, Harvesting, Happening August

Can you believe we're settling into August.
Weather here in Ohio has not been typical.
A little heat, rain, and still there are some
fantastic days with temps in the 70's. Love
it. Beautiful days for baseball games, going
for ice cream cones, swimming at the local
pool, biking, picnics, vacations….well I
could go on and on. Summerthyme is the

Whether you're doing your own gardening
or shopping the farmers market, the bounty
of summer is plentiful right now. It is easy
and portable to pick fresh watermelon, ripe
tomatoes, fresh corn and beans. Add to that
a bunch of daisies and sunflowers, maybe a
a oh my….picnic thyme!

Around my house, picked my carrots, the
last of my radishes and found some great
melon, berries, fresh corn and squash at
the local market. Mmm..thinking recipes.    



           So whatever is planned on your calendar
           for the rest of August just remember to
           lift your face to the sun, feel the warmth
           and enjoy!!
Ron and Diana at the beach