July slides by

,,, and I shall miss it!  So quickly come…and gone.

We found this gorgeous creature in our backyard.  She has an amazingly perfect web and sat and posed for her photograph.

Golden orb weaver…right next to the screen porch.  So beautiful.

More planting of flowers today.  Pentas, Mexican sage (which is a kind of salvia), found the most gorgeous phlox in a pale pale pinky lavender with white, and added more portulaca.  The raised vegetable planter is now a butterfly garden and they were already visiting it before I could even get the final plants in the soil.

Getting ready to roll

This is VBS week and I am going out to help with bible school at a very poor inner city school.  Worked at the school a year ago putting in garden beds so the school could grow their own vegetables, and was sad to hear from the children that the plants came up…and were allowed to die untended.

Perhaps this year, if I can get some help, I can go plant their vegetable beds and make it out to the school at least once or twice a week just to water and weed. Also thinking a few perennials would go a long way toward helping them have success…strawberry plants, blueberry bushes, sunchokes, ground nuts (Indian potatoes), scarlet runner beans, and kale. That alone would give the kids something to harvest almost year round down here.  I need to put this up to the school and the church group.

Scarlet runner beans

Sunchokes (Jerusalem Artichokes)

my magnificent magnolia….and other tales from the backyard

I have a magnolia tree.  Not too old, but old enough it towers above everything but the live oaks, beautifully pyramidal in form, deep glossy green and loaded with rust colored buds and huge creamy white flowers it is my showpiece.  I love this tree.  Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora) flower   I wish I had a picture of the whole tree!

But these blossoms perfume the whole yard.  Heaven. 

And to make things even more amazing in the yard… I have hot banana peppers, baby white eggplants, big yellow bell peppers, tomatoes that are almost ripe, cucumbers going crazy…. and my FIG TREE is loaded down with baby figs.  So exciting.

In backyard news of the animal variety…. glass snakes! LOTS of them.  Looks like last year’s bumper crop of babies did well and now I have large, fat beautiful glass snakes in every part of the landscape.  Since they are actually legless lizards no one needs to freak out over their presence and it is so nice to see nature’s creatures enjoying the habitat I provide for them.  

More from the garden

Reesie and I had one last busy but beautiful day at ‘work’ putting in flower beds, caring for the vegetable garden, ripping out old pine straw from last winter and replacing it with mulch and topsoil and new flowers in sooo many varieties and colors.  It was wonderful and it felt good to get in a lot of hours in the southern sunshine doing something I love so much.

Back home we continued preparations for Reesie going off to her job the end of the week.  Tomorrow she has her physical for camp and I have the final meeting to set up AJ’s school schedule for next year.  A sophomore!  How do they keep growing up when I don’t feel a day older than I did when he was born?

The wrens have two nests out on the screen porch…I am thinking one of last year’s brood has returned with Mama to build her own nest. Sweet.

This is going to be a summer full of miracles

Enjoying the Lowcountry weather

Gorgeous today…sunny and mild, with just the sweetest little breeze.  And having my car back from the brake shop, we took full advantage of the day (and the hatchback, LOL)  First a run to the bank, a few bills to pay, a post office run… then stopped at Lowe’s for the topsoil and peat for the garden.

Went to lunch with Reesie, then across to Hyams Nursery where we got a wonderful purple cherry heirloom tomato,

heirloom pepper, and cucumbers.  Got seeds for, you guessed it, heirloom carrots and lettuce.  At home, we dug out the remaining kale from last year, cleaned out the raised pallet garden, and refilled it with compost in the bottom level and fresh soil mixture for the top layer.  Discovered the potatoes I planted last week in a pot have lovely leafs now.

Tomorrow I need to mow, and we will try to find enough pots for the remaining tomatoes, radishes, and lettuce.  Hopefully the growing bags for potatoes, sweet potatoes and carrots will arrive this weekend.  Need to run out to Sea Island Savory Herbs this weekend to fill in my herb bed also.  The sage wintered over and is spreading out of its cinder block planter.  Rosemary is a little worse for wear but will be full again this summer.  I need new hot oregano, white sage, cilantro, hyssop, and tarragon.

I do so love working in the earth.  Happy gardening all!

what now?

It is Monday…again.  Not sure how that happens so often 😉  The weekend was lovely, if hectic.  The car is still  in the shop (seems Hyundai is rather sloppy about getting and shipping parts)  So we are managing all of our trips in the Miata… which just has to make ya smile.

No garden supplies or soil till we get my car back, but we did stop and nab some tiny tomato plants… heirloom, of course… and decided to try out hand at white eggplant.  Found lovely Japanese heirloom variety with smaller egg shaped fruit… very excited to see how long before they up and kicking out pretty white eggplants for the table.

Got morning glory seeds to start… we really wanted some interesting striped ones I’d seen, but this is a pretty heirloom mix of colors and will look nice trellised up the porch pole.

Looks like lots of gardening to be done this week.  Won’t that be fun!!!

Spring is such a treasure.

finally Friday!

…. and so much to do!  We worked, of course.  Stripped pine mulch back so budding plants can enjoy the Spring sunshine.  Emptied pots to make way for new plants.  Sorted new plants by color for filling those pots in the next few days.  Enjoyed the company of sunning anoles, birds, squirrels, and…. yes the weirdness continues… yet more crows.  Crows and/or ravens seem to be everywhere I go of late.  Rather odd.

Tonight we did some quick shopping for Easter.  Tomorrow we lay in groceries and get some house work done around here.

Spring fever has me fully in its grasp as I jot notes on all the household repairs I dream of making in the next few months, the plants I want for yard and garden, two or three things to make the coming spring/summer more fun for the kids (a new trampoline, a fun swing of some kind to replace the aged and worn out hammock swing under the live oak tree, a basketball hoop for my teenager)  Among the plants I want to add to the yard in a beautiful weeping tree for daughter, Reesie.  She has wanted one for years…but just the ‘right’ one… a tree not only beautiful but popular with birds, and loved by bees and butterflies.  We have one chosen at last…now I just have to find one at the local nursery and it will be our ‘spring treat’.

A ‘weeping’ version of the Golden Rain Tree….

  gorgeous isn’t it?

The dogs are also reveling in the return of long days and warm sunshine…laying for hours stretched in their favorite sandy spot near the gate.

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And as today is Friday… time for our Fantasy Friday photo.

We needed something….springish 🙂  Hope it enchants.

the garden path