Worry is like a rocking chair, it's gives you something to do but gets you nowhere!

Friday, January 28, 2011

FF -- Buds Already?

It's FF over at http://tootsietime.blogspot.com drop by and see what's happening this last Friday of January 2011. My husband and I have been watching the Hydrangeas the last week or so. We weren't really sure if the leaf buds were going to make it, lo and behold they are still growing.
This one is in a container, a rooted cutting from Ms. Doris three doors down last year. I was sure it would be last to show new growth being in a container. Not sure of it's name so the blooms will be a surprise.
We noticed some buds on the Blueberry too. See the cleared area across our second driveway?
A new garden area, dappled sun...should it be a Woodland or a Meadow? Suggestions are oh so welcome!
One small area of Poppies...I have them all over more than any other place.
Today I am Thankful our temperatures are warming up, might be 70 tomorrow!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hesperis matronalis--Dame's Rocket, Friend or Foe?

Dame's Rocket, Sweet Rocket--Hesperis matronalis
Some of what I have learned:
It is planted as an ornamental although it escapes quickly by it's prolific seed set. Some of it's success is due to it's seeds in "Wildflower" mixes. Studies on Dame's Rocket are not extensive and is not widely recognized as an invasive. Effects of Dame's Rocket are not known, it could compete with native species.
Prohibited in Massachusetts...banned in Connecticut...invasive in Michigan...invades wild areas everywhere but the deep south.
It is NOT to be confused with Phlox paniculata...Phlox has 5 petals as pictured below.

The are very similar aren't they?

Where as Dame's Rocket has 4 petals as pictured below. This one plant grew out of a wildflower mix last year, in a container. I saved the seeds and now have seedlings up in the greenhouse. I really like this flower.

My question to you : What do you know of Hesperis matronalis--Dame's Rocket in your area, friend or foe?


Today I am Thankful for the sunshine outside my window!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Today I am Thankful for the little 'weird' things in my gardens.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fertilizer Friday --

It's FF over at http://tootsietime.blogspot.com drop by and see what other gardener's are sharing today. Rescued Stock for .50 a piece are beginning to bloom in the greenhouse.
One of my trays of seedlings seem to be doing fine in the greenhouse.
Dame's Rocket
Diamond Frost Euphorbia is really greening up . . .in the back left is a rooted Mexican Bush Sage.
African Daisies are very happy in the greenhouse.
Here are the African Daisies that I rescued. Happy as well. To the left is an Ornamental Potato Vine overwintering, and to the right is a Brugmansia cutting that has rooted.
This is where the majority of our bird activity happens. I'm standing in the driveway, as you can tell our home is at the bottom of a hill..to the left of the Pear tree the birdseed has killed the grass. It is an eyesore to say the least. Today I set out to dress it up a bit while leaving it bird friendly. I started digging some holes around the tree, far out enough as NOT to damage the roots.
Then I dug up the Liriope Grass from around the mailbox, boy have I been wanting to redo that area too. I planted the Grass and then set out newspaper, wet it down good.
Because I didn't have a truck load of mulch sitting around anywhere, I raked up some leaves...which I seem to have many truck loads of them laying around and put on top of the newspaper.
I then added a couple of rocks and a small bird bath. The birds have seed, suet, sock, fresh water and soon worms!

It will be a very low maintenance area and reward us with lots of entertainment. I believe it will compliment the Pear tree come Spring. We have another Pear tree to the left of this one a little higher on the hill that I will be doing the same thing around.


Today I am Thankful for being able to work/play in the yard!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

GGW "Picture This Contest"

This is my entry to the "Picture This" photo contest over at http://www.gardeninggonewild.com/?p=15262 Topic 'Macro in a Mason Jar' for January.

I cut three African Daisy blooms, placed them in the bottom of the mason jar with the back of the blooms facing up. I then laid a sheet of green tissue paper on top of a table lamp and set the jar on top of that.

Today I am Thankful for these photography challenges.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Tufted Titmouse...For Gail

Tufted Titmouse are commom in Eastern deciduous forests and a frequent visitor to backyard bird feeders, especially in winter. Titmouse prefer sunflower seeds, although they will eat suet, peanuts and other seeds. They build their nests in cavities, putting up nest boxes is a good way to attract breeding Titmice to your yard. They are a soft silvery gray above and white below with rusty or peach colored wash down the flanks and a black patch just above the bill. Very entertaining to watch. You will see their assertive side come out when they are with smaller birds like the Sparrow, below. (information taken from http://www.birdsource.org./gbbc/ ) I watched this Titmouse go around and around the feeder squawking at all of the Sparrows to leave.

All he really accomplished was getting the Sparrows all excited and
squawking at each other. That's the Titmouse behind the Sparrow on the right, eating peacefully while the Sparrows were arguing...hmm, know anyone like that?

Posted for Gail at http://clayandlimestone.blogspot.com/ drop by and tell her I said, "Hi." She has a beautifully photographed and written blog about her quest for filling her gardens with native plants.


Today I am Thankful for learning about our birds. I am also inviting you to check out The Great Backyard Bird Count at http://www.birdsource.org./gbbc/ it will be Feb. 18 - 21, 2011. Hey, if you are watching birds anyway, might as well print out the form, note your observations and submit them. It's free and helps keep track of the birds and their migration habits.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Foliage Follow Up

I'm joining Pam over at http://www.penick.net/digging/ for Foliage Follow Up which follows GBBD over at http://maydreamsgardens.blogspot.com .

I have questions about a few of these....This Golden Euonymus is one slow grower...it also gets those nasty tiny gnat/aphid lookings things on it in summer.
Any growing/pruning tips?
Here's the type of Aloe that I grow in the garden. I have several and they are off shooting pups, see them on the right? Do you know it's first name? I thought it was Soap, after seeing different Aloes on other blogs, I'm not so sure now. Or, is an Aloe, an Aloe, an Aloe?
Bloody Dock--completely retreated in late Summer, now it is back. Is that normal? I would love for it to grow big like the tag says it will. How would you suggest I care for it? Wonder if it needs a new home?
I had two Fennels, this one and Bronze, they both completely retreated mid Summer. The Bronze did not return. The green one is doing wonderfully.
Has new growth. I'll take suggestions and comments on growing this too.
I rescued two Japanese Yew late Summer and could not decide where to plant them. So, I have this one temporarily in a container with some Dusty Miller.
Just so over the top pleased with the Abutilon 'Fairy Coral Red' It was new to me last Spring. It has gone above and beyond the job I intended it to do in the garden. We have had record breaking low's and longer stretches of cold this winter and just look at the green maple shaped leaves. What do you know of this plant?


Today I am Thankful for the days getting a little longer and the temps a little warmer.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

First GBBD 2011

Yes I know that 49 out of the 50 states received snow....the one left out would be Florida. We live close enough to the Georgia line that I have seen snow covered cars and semi trucks in the mornings, thought that was pretty cool. We did see about 20 snowflakes on Dec. 26th..! I really don't know how ya'll live such long cold winters. (It does get very cold here just normally warms up in the afternoon for a bit) I do enjoy seeing all of the snow photos, it's just beautiful. I do think and pray for all of you often for plenty of food in the house and working heaters.

It's time for GBBD, hosted by Carol over at http://maydreamsgardens.blogspot.com .
A few blooms are opening on the Loropetalum--I love the fact that you can prune this anytime. It helps my itch to prune this time of the year if I just snip one or two tiny branches.
We have the old winter dependables...Pansies..I did not purchase flats of them like I normally do...The cold usually wilts the blooms but the plants themselves will be fine when it warms up a bit.

There are still some small blooms on the gardens Mums.
I purchased 4 tall Dianthus for $1.89 a piece, great buy as they will give me several years of blooms..like the Pansies, Petunias, Snapdragons, the Dianthus blooms suffer in the cold, the foliage is fine. I actually bought 2 flats of Petunias for $3.00 a piece and planted them last weekend. They will be fine and bloom when it stops freezing.

In the Greenhouse : Rescued African Daisies--the mising flowers were in the mason jar yesterday.
Yellow African Daisies
Diamond Frost Euphorbia over wintering in the Greenhouse...finally getting some blooms.
Not really a bloom and not really a favorite of many..BUT still it's color in winter!

Everyone have a blessed weekend.


Today I am Thankful for the warmth of gardening bloggers.