Idyll#378: Birds, Bees and...Bathrooms!~

gardenbug(Canada zone 5)May 7, 2008

Indoors or out...It is SPRING. Tell us all about it at your place!

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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

The second thunderstorm of the day has just started. Better turn this machine off.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 9:26AM
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Ill be leaving on Friday a.m. to go to my nieceÂs graduation. They live near Lincoln NE. So I donÂt feel so bad that the weather is crappy and the garden is soggy, but it had better shape up after that :o) Since the weather has been rainy IÂve been trying to wrap up indoor stuff. I am still putting seeds in milk cartons as we empty them.

I called Kenzie last night to see how she was doing. She had another sinus infection. She was quite excited that her daddy had dug up a little plot for a small vegetable garden. She told me that she wanted to grow tomatoes, pepperoni and blueberry pie in "her garden".

Mary, IÂm sure you are relieved for now. Hopefully, something will come along for your DH that would allow less travel but no move.

Chelone, we have blue spruces along the road for screening. They are probably 4-5Â below the grade of the road. They seem to do well. The downside is they amount of time they take to get to a decent size. In this picture they are probably 15 years old. This was a planting done before I came on the scene.

PM2, I have the ÂDarts Gold as well and it really looks pretty in the spring with the irises. What a pretty picture of the pond and swan family.

Who has worked with hypertufa? I was totally inspired by the nice ones that I saw at the nursery. I bought some of the plants they had used in them.

My sambucus was planted in 2006. It does have some buds on it this year. The shape is a little weird thanks to the rabbits.

I hope the sun shines where you garden.


Spruces along the road:

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 10:23AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Im being a bad bad girl.... and checking in when I should be doing that grinding thing....

Mary, - Im so excited for you - while the thought of what you might have done in the exotic locale/garden zones that Denise and Kathy share and what type of amazing garden you might have planted excited me, I echo the feelings that Im sure you feel sooo much better, bittersweet as it might have been to have your DH more at home, to uproot your lives when you've settled in there for so long and w/ your children at the points in their lives to make the change.

It seems a lot of us are now Finally starting to "move forward" w/ things/events that have had our lives seemingly in neutral or sliding backward ever and ever, as Chelone mentions. Hurray for moving forward!!

Deanne -- Im even more excited than about your containers to hear you say your Driveway garden (sans vole visitors and redecoration) are going to be feature in FG?!!! That's wildly exciting too -- I just love that border and its combos. Im dying to see the special issue on the containers -- BN is taking too durned long to get it in!

That's so gracious of you to ask for more bad photos from me, Deanne -- I have to laugh, they're soooo bad in comparison to ones you and 'bug take! -- I havent had any time lately to take more photos but will try to do if I can - I can't believe the lily buds that are already starting to get serious -- the season is definitely leaping forward in my area. As is the pollen -- wow, the head and nose on my body are in serious fighting mode at present.

I've noticed in my recent SALATing that I still am challenged by the idea of finding some sort of cohesive edging plants to make things flow well -- my experiments of trying different things in several places has failed for the most part and I just cant seem to get any 2 or 3 things to "stick" along a whole edge -- it's frustrating... and the thymes planted near the patio continue to die out despite amendments, replacements, etc.... o, the trouble of a gardener...

Michelle - what beautiful shots -- and you got that rainbow -- it really looks so idyllic on your farm -- I think your sambucus looks just like PM's too.

'bug - sorry Phoebster is being so mischevious -- I hope her stomach is made of iron -- plastic uh? She strikes me a lot like Chloe - only in a bit bigger and blacker, LOL.... it's amazing the things they can think of --

well, i better get back to the day job.


    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 10:37AM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Hi all,
I'm going to be a 'Grandma' any day now! The babies will have 4 legs and fur but I know the Idyll's won't discriminate. I'm so nervous. I took Ebony to the Vet this morning and she is having 9-11? puppies. She's just beautiful and one of the nicest, calmest fosters I've ever had.
I just picked her up last night with her sis Checkers. SO cute...
Gotta' run. I'm making a birthing crate.


    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 1:58PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Do you know of any GH rescues that might take one or more of these if we could get them transported. :(


The Yukon shelter called to let our rescue group know that they have 4 tattooed greyhounds. They were left by renters when they moved and the owner of the home brought them to the shelter. I thought they were in the Pets and People program but they are not. They are in the Yukon shelter and have 5 days of life left.
They checked for tattoos and said both ears are tattooed (this means they are retired racers). I explained that we do not have any open foster homes but we would see what we can do.
I am desperate to help these greys find a good life after racing. If you have ever wanted to experience an angel you could foster one for a while and see what might be missing in your life. If YOU could foster we provide the crate, food and vet care that might be needed.
We have never sent out a plea for help like this but this is an unusual circumstance to have 4 greys appear at once needing homes. You can check out our website at
Contact: Sharon Huddleston (405) 205-9721 or email me at if you can help.


    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 2:55PM
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I'm not sure what it is, but today I saw Serviceberries (Amelanchier) EVERYWHERE I looked (Marian!). Most were multi-stemmed and the flowers were white. My own ("Robin Hill", I think) is tree form and the flowers emerge pink and fade to white. It's just starting to open and it's OK, but I think 5 yrs. is going to be the turning point from yawn to Wow! . :/

Still, though, I have to say spring is really hitting her stride here. Ferns are up 12", bulbs are providing wondrous color, and I'm realizing that dividing the hostas is becoming more important with every passing hour. The peonies are making a big move skyward and I will try to get some shots for you, Marian, because I know you really like them, too.

I have to get downstairs and begin moving stuff away from the side of the house. I have NO idea what sort of wildlife is about to have its home eradicated, but c'est la vie, baby!

More rain and chill on the way, and that is probably good for newly transplanted things and the cleaning that yet awaits my attention...


    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 5:40PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

I seem to be suffering from both a cold and allergies. The cold part seems to be waning (sore throat mostly gone) but the allergies seem to be in full flood still. I'm still hacking, wheezing and honking and have low enoegy. The continuing cold, gray, damp weather is not improving my mood!

We gave Misty her first seasonal haircut today. For a little dog, she has a LOT of hair! Today was probably not a good day for her haircut. The poor little beastie looks embarassed - and cold (is snuggling in the mohair blanket a lot...) Yesterday she had her heartworm blood test and kennel cough shot. Next week she goes for a teeth cleaning visit. By the time that's over, she'll be none too pleased with us I think!

Phoebe's cone collar comes off tomorrow, right gb? She'll be a happy puppy!

Great rainbow shot Michelle!

Enjoy your canine grandmothertood Jerri.

House cleaning on the agenda here tomorrow. It's getting to be time to start doing more substantial interior changes soon. It's hard to believe that this is our 9th year here but it's becoming more evident that some painting and redecorating is due soon...

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 8:37PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I could almost say "ditto" to Woody's post. Feeling sickish...but dizzy and such, not a cold. The weather stinks and my friends who came to paint scenery today had to leave due to thunderstorms.

Phoebe's haircut was postponed to next week, but yes, the collar comes off tomorrow. YIPPEEEE. She ate through the first one and it cost me $9. She is totally disobedient now after a week without training. DH is a softeee.

We've been in our house 11 years now. I'd love to get some painting done, but I no longer have the oomph I used to and can't afford to pay someone to do it at the moment. The dining room is my next goal. Frankly, if I start the one room a day clean-up like Eden, then it all would look way better.

Yes to the lovely rainbow shot Michelle!
Yes to Serviceberries! I think mine will start to open tomorrow.
Yes to Cindy being a "bad girl" and posting a chatty report!

A big NO to the #@%$&*^%s who abandon pets when it suits them!??!! Fortunately the home owner did take them to the shelter....but is there enough time to deal with them? Pets are higher on the scale than many people I'm afraid. IMO

Off for another dog walk. I'm pooped but she isn't! DH is above the Atlantic at the moment, away for a week.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 9:48PM
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Hey, I want to grow blueberry pie in my garden too!

Darnit Deanne I intended to pick up the Fine gardening mag when I was at the store earlier and forgot it. I am so thrilled that you are in it. Congratulations.

Mary, good to hear you won't be leaving your home, garden and friends. Is your DH very disapointed?

Pm2, I also enjoyed the picture and story of the swans.

Michelle, the row of spruces is neat. I hope the weather clears up by the time you get back.
Oh Wow! the rainbow picture is great. I like that the silo is in it .

The rain didn't hit here until about noon so I managed to move two clematis and a daylily, and plant a holly that has been in a tub for two years. I have several more daylillies that need moved because shrubs are getting bigger.
I don't think I'll have to water the grass seed for several days. More rain for a couple of days. The seed should be sprouting soon. I also planted some cosmo seeds today. I need to go through my seed stash and see what else I have to plant. Moved indoor plants to the back porch. I hope I won't regret that.

Writers block, so I'm saying goodnite to all . Hope you had a good day. Norma

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 10:32PM
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Just a quick drop in from me tonight. Add bedrooms to the list. I also got a couple of perennials planted before the rains set in this afternoon. A brunnera named starry eyes and a new shorter monarda that I can't remember the name of at the moment. I can't believe how much the garden has grown in the last week. Lilacs, myosotis, dicentra, and more tulips in bloom. The maples are full of those nasty 'helicopters' this year after none last year. The garden will be a mess when they fall. We try to work on one room per winter here and one major outdoor project per summer.

Woody and Marie, hope you're both feeling better soon. Marie, a week to myself sound like heaven right about now. It's been so crazy here. Enjoy yours!

Michelle, loved Kenzie's choices for plants for the garden. I want to grow blueberry pie in my garden too. That rainbow shot is great.

Herbacious peonies are one of the flowers that hasn't made the cut in my garden. Here they're always in the mud it seems and so I got rid of the ones I had a few years ago due to lack of garden real estate. I am a big fan of tree peonies though. A local nursery has Itoh peonies this year. Interesting but very pricey.

Chelone, you're very ambitious this week both inside and out. Lots of work going on there on the compound. I have a serviceberry that's blooming now but I don't think it's old enought to have hit it's stride yet. It's a couple of years old. I don't see many of them around these parts.

Mary, I imagine your both relieved and disappointed. I do believe that such things usually work out the for the best. This must not have not been quite the right time to make the move.

Cindy, I'd love to see more pictures of your garden too.

And Monique, if your reading, a thread of your spring gardens would be a special treat. Hint, hint!

Bella informed me today that's not her name, it's Isabella. We got a butterfly house today. Sending for the caterpillars tomorrow.

This has gotten longer than I intended so I'll now say goodnight.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 10:45PM
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I confess to skimming behavior when I finally sat down at the computer this evening. No way to catch up but so nice to see Anita join us again and a nice long post from Eiand I guess I can count out Mary making an offer on my house ?
We had an excellent trip and there will be photos forthcoming, this weekend most likely. DS took 172 pics of Aiden !! I will however pick out one or two to post , lol. Just though tonight Id drop in to say hi and wish you could all see my roses right nowthey really popped while I was gone.

Hello to all , and will continue to try to absorb all the news from Lake Idyll, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking , and all the children are above average.

Kathy in Napa, home again

    Bookmark   May 7, 2008 at 11:22PM
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What a dratted lousy time of year to be beseiged with a cold! Good wishes to everyone under the weather for a speedy recovery.

And lets here it for liberation from unwanted fur, "lampshades", and all manner of canine encumberances. Now, Phoebe... back to boot camp, you little scoundrel. I suggest leading off with a sound beating. Ditto, on losers who don't have the sac to deal with the unhappy reality of unwanted pets. Errr.

And I did mean to comment on Michelle's rainbow picture, it really is terrific, esp. against that dark menacing sky. there are times when I am just blown over by the spectacle Nature can provide. Blueberry pie in the garden... hehehe.

Window boxes are off the front of the house, there are 3 more to be removed from the back of it. I was amazed at what good condition they're in for nearly 17 yrs. old. The helpmeet made them the first year we moved in (1991). I remember painting Bin sealing shellac on the insides of them as the first George Bush flew over the house on his way to Walker's Point! They were up before we even stained the house, so there are bare spots behind their locations.

I hoed out some of the accumulted junk that was in the screen room under the deck. A lot of weird furniture items that I've not yet been able to part with or rehabilitate, etc.. But the real surprise was what I first thought was the dried center of a sunflower. I thought it rather strange that something would drag it in there to consume it, but it gradually dawned on me that it was a dead animal (the maggots were a clue!). The light was waning and I didn't have a flashlight, but I suspect it may be a baby porcupine. I've alerted the helpmeet and requested that he put it aside for my inspection later today. I wonder what happened to the poor little thing. :(

Welcome back to Kathy who will, I hope, use restraint in posting baby pictures out of respect for those of us who hate kids (and dogs). ;) I'm sure the trip was exciting and there were lots of laughs to be had. I will be hunting up your rose pictures when I have more time to really study them.

Eden, I am exactly the opposite of you with respect to peonies. I have one tree peony that is OK, but I object to the short bloom period (5 days, max.). I'd take the herbaceous ones any day of the week, but perhaps I'd feel differently if the tree was relocated. Dunno.

OK, gotta get about my business, friends. It's gonna be a busy couple of days round the compound.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 5:22AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

It's a busy time here as well. I wish it were a true holiday... But no, my friend Lynn is coming tomorrow for an overnight (must tidy bedroom for her, sheets on bed etc) and also my gardening friend Ann. Early Saturday they will drive north to Lynn's farm together where Ann will do garden cleanup for the weekend. This is the summer of her daughter's wedding and she is certainly in preparation mode! Luckily her daughter has strong opinions and will be able to have the wedding of her dreams. The business of her father and his new companion has been solved ("I'd rather deal with her disappointment than your mother's wrath") and that eases things considerably. It will be an amazing event for sure. Lynn's latest question to me was on what style of chandeliers to install in the barn!!!! Mid August is scheduled.

Now Kathy, I need more than one photo of Mr Baby and so Chelone can just avert her eyes. Please. Roses are OK too.

As to blueberry pie, I think Cynthia still has an excellent recipe for it that you all should try! It combines fresh with cooked berries and is delicious. You can add whipped cream or ice cream if you like. Will Kenzie grow ice cream plants too?

Eden, take a look at the butterfly posting below!

As to peonies, they can be beautiful...particularly in huge vases. Outdoors they don't last well, especially drooping in to the mud after the rain...and there is ALWAYS rain just at the critical time with peonies. With tree peonies there is always the risk of frost here. If warned, I can cover the plant in sheets etc overnight and this adds 2-3 degrees to the temperature. The one I inherited has amazing blooms, huge and pink. I don't really like it unfortunately. I bought a new very small one last year, in orange hues, and will have to wait and see what I think of it if it ever blooms.

Must go eat and walk the rascal before heading to the vet's.

Ta Ta!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:18AM
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Idyll is on even keel again with the west coast holding up her end :) Welcome back, Kathy! I look forward to seeing Mr. Baby.

Blueberry Pie indeed! I have a vision of Kenzie in the garden wearing an apron, gathering all her ingredients for a creation she'll concoct in her little playhouse! I hope she'll make a flaky crust :)

Chelone, I don't believe I've ever seen a porcupine up close...and certainly not in the condition you describe, LOL!

Woody and GB, pollen has been giving us problems here, too....hack, sneeze, cough.

Phoebe will do anything you ask of her if you just take the lampshade off...."plea-a-a-s-s-s-e-e-"

I've got a whole day outside planned! Nick needs my computer so that renders me useless in the office :) I'm going to buy plants from my neighbor and spend some time planting up an old bicycle basket and a couple of other things that are coming out of the basement and getting "used up."

But first, to the gym. Deanne, the trainer is kicking my butt (which is a few inches higher than it used to be, LOL). It's actually been fun to work with someone who sets up all the equipment and does all the thinking - all I have to do is show up and do what she tells me.

Time to catch a bus


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:34AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Electrical Storm Beaver Lake State Park, Arkansas
Photography by Mike Boyd Photos

Looks like rain today but supposed to be sunny by the end of the day.

Anita, yes, I was typed out and planning fewer marathon postings as a matter of fact.
Did anyone else happen to notice how long a post it took for me to catch up with everyone? I think it was only about a week that I was not posting and I went back and looked at how much it took to catch up with everyone's posts for one week. It took a whole six full screens of posting with only one photo as part of that. That is a lot! So, I was thinking...I see many of you always saying that you are sorry you are behind and you wish you could catch up with everyone. Just think, if everyone caught up and addressed everything that everyone said. [g] So, just be reassured that really I can't see how it is even possible for everyone to be caught up all the time.

Nice to see you back Kathy and looking forward to photos soon. Missed you. :-)

Mary...what a nice surprise that you won't have to move and can enjoy your garden in peace this summer! Hope DH is not too disappointed. Funny story about your DH at the concert. DH and I used to enjoy a concert here and there, with Now we are just old fogeys. Good thing our kids are older. Actually, I don't hear them making plans for concerts much any more either. Leaf Mold!! Lucky girl!

Michelle...I have tried to take a photo of a rainbow once or twice and it has not come out very visible at all. Yours was a perfect shot and it really was right over your house! I didn't know you lived on a farm. Nice line of Spruce trees. Must be pretty with snow on them and they make an excellent screen. Your Sambucus is off to a good start. My Dart's Gold is very enjoyable. It is small, in it's third year but I have moved it two springs in a row. [g] I have some purple iris in front of ours too, and had a patch of Honesty around it last year that was a nice combination.

Cindy...Did your Mom pass away last year? I had read about Chelone's Mom, but not yours. I hope your allergy season is brief. I also have a problem keeping thymes going. I have clay soil and they just don't manage the drainage over the winter I guess. I have luck with them in raised beds sometimes but that's it and they don't thrive. What else have you tried along your edges? Sun or shade? Cindy just point, shoot, and post. None of us take photos as well as

Very interesting story of how the FG article came about, Deanne. Is it this month's issue or September?

Saucy...that is amazing about your tree. I had heard equipment was bad, but I didn't think it would kill a mature tree like that. Are we talking about a Bobcat, or larger? exciting to be expecting puppies! I always wanted to do that.

Serviceberries are so brief...I had about a week from them and now they are gone. I am hoping for a good crop of berries for Robins and friends.

G'bug....Hope you feel better, not so nice that you start feeling that way just as DH is leaving town. Pretty white tulips and where are the ducks in your pond? Does Phoebe swim in it? My FIL enjoyed chocolate ice cream on his blueberry pie and I became a convert. :-)

Norma...glad you enjoyed the swans. So many animal lovers here, I can always count on animal/bird photos to be welcome. :-) I need to make up my mind if I am planting any more seed too. Might have a chance to do that today.

Eden...Isabella will love that butterfly treehouse, I am sure. :-) Your sambucus is about the size of mine and is a little ahead of mine I think.

I agree with Chelone...worst time of year to be sick putting a damper on enjoying spring! Hope you all will baby yourselves to feeling better quickly! Put the feet up, pick up some gardening magazines and have some nice echinacea tea. :-)


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:50AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Anita...I forgot you wanted to know where I get my photos. Most of the time I get them on the National Geographic site. Lots of great photos there.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:55AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning all!

What a productive week we are having here. Still havent gotten to the pond yet but that is on todays agenda of things to do. Do you all make lists for what to get accomplished in a day that is at least three or fours more hours of stuff to do than can be done is a day?LOL WE always do that, work until exhaustion sets in then have a well deserved soak in the hot tub.

So, a very strange thing was discovered when Doug was working on the shed yesterday. He noticed something that looked like an animal foot sticking out from under the front edge by the rock step and pulled it out and it was a mummified woodchuck!!!!!! What a horrifying looking thing. Im REALLY glad I didnt find it. Anyway, I know exactly when that critter passed to the beyond. In 2001 we had a woodchuck problem they were nesting under the shed and decimating the gardens. Anyway, Doug put a smoke bomb under there and about a week later the smell started Ewwwwuuuuu. It was so bad I had a Turkey Vulture perching on the shed roof trying to find dinner. Anyway the smell passed and that was the last I thought about that until yesterday. How weird!

Cindy, so sorry to disappoint you but the one page thing for FG is not the driveway garden but the small mailbox garden Id put together in 04. ~~ BTW, you take very good pics and I love your garden. So there. LOL

PM2 the recent thing in FG is in the Container Garden Issue #5 that just hit the news stands. If things work out Ill also have a little thing in there in the Sept. regular issue. ~~ I agree that its difficult if not impossible to comment to everything that everyone says here. One of the reasons I love this forum is because its ok to ramble on, say something to everyone, or just pop in for a quick hello.

Jerri, so do you have puppies yet?

Woody, I hope your allergies calm down soon. I know Ive been sneezing up a storm here lately myself.

Bug, horray for Phoebes losing the collar today. They are such a nuisance.

Norma, sounds like you got a lot done yesterday. I want to do all my moving about of plants today as we are supposed to get a few inches of rain tomorrow.

Eden, I got rid of almost all my herbaceous peonies also. They just took up too much room for the couple days of pretty flowers and as everyone has said the rains always come at that critical time and thats the end of the peonies. ~~ I cant grow monarda here because of mildew issues. No matter where I plant it or how careful I am it always looks horrible by August.

Monique, Yes please????? Spring pics from your gardens would be wonderful.

Kathy, yea! Great to have you back home.

Michelle, GORGEOUS rainbow photograph! I just love it.

V. Whats up?

Saucy, I surely wish you lived closer so we could work out at the gym together.

OKie Dokie, its time to get going here and start on the list of todays projects.


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 9:36AM
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I love the peony flowers too. Especially the pretty pink ones like Sarah Bernhardt or Raspberry Sundae. I do buy bouquets of them from the flower vendor at the farmers market when she has them.

A couple pictures of my tree peonies in bloom from last year...

Deanne, many of the newer monardas are supposed to be mildew resistant. This new one I have is called Grand Parade. I don't have alot of monardas, Raspberry Wine and Mahogany are my only other ones. I used to have Jacob Cline but that bright red clashed with most everything in my garden so I yanked it. I had Marshalls Delight too but it faded away.

So Kathy, did you fall in love with Aidan? Bet you did. Looking forward to seeing pictures!

Saucy, I did the personal trainer thing for a while a long time ago and loved it. Like you said it's nice to have someone there to do all the thinking for you and keep you motivated. I too wish your bees would hurry up and get there.

Marie, thanks for the link. I think Bella's going to really enjoy watching the process. She gets so excited when she sees a butterfly in the garden.

Time to get back to the cleaning. It's chilly here today and overcast so it won't be too hard to stay inside. I do have 3 new hellebores I want to get planted. One of my favorite nurseries had quite a few different ones for $7.99. Nice healthy good size plants too.

Here's a link to show you what the brunnera starry eyes that I planted yesterday looks like.


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 11:14AM
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Saucy, pictures of your new container gardens please! The bike basket idea is great!


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 12:02PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

WOW to Brunnera Starry Eyes! That really stands out! Just what we need at this time of year. I can't believe you got a photo of your peonies without rain!

Phoebe is FREEEEE of the detested collar and stitches. Oh boy, now the training begins with the monster!


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 12:32PM
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Last evening was lovely here and I accomplished much in the garden. I'm moving a few things around and planting a few new things before I leave for the weekend and before the predicted rain. I dug out 2 New Dawn roses that just werent performing on my arbor. What a job! I replaced them with William Baffin because ND always has so much cane die back. William is supposed to be much hardier.

Eden, the starry eyes brunnera is neat. The nurseries around here just dont carry a lot of unusual stuff. Ill have to make my way over to a nursery a couple of miles away from us. The lady runs it from their farm and she tries to carry some things that are a little different.

Ive had monarda Marshalls Delight for many years with no mildew. As for peonies, I have plenty of room but do tend to go for the singles, which dont flop. I have one tree peony that is kind of yellow/orange. It seems to me like it has some kind of Japenese name. Ive only had it a couple of years so I havent see a lot of blooms yet. Eden, yours are fabulous!

Kenzie, loves butterflies too. She was telling me how she learned about them in her preschool. Re: the blueberry pie plant, isnt the imagination of a 3 year old fun?

Saucy, I have an old bike with a basket that Ive often thought of planting but havent gotten around to it. Id love to see what you do with yours.

Cindy, there are lots of options for edging plants. Check out some of Deannes photos, she does a great job with the edging. Are you looking for sun or shade.
Out of 172 pictures of the little lad, we surely will be allowed to see more than 1 or 2 ;o)

Ewww about all the mummified critters. Ours was a mummifed mouse that we found under some loose flooring in the laundry when we pulled it up.

Pm2, please dont think you always have to "catch up" Its not a requirement here.

bug, we will certainly need to see pictures of that wedding chandeliers in the barn just sounds so interesting.

Back to work


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 2:09PM
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I saw a cute idea for an old bike that's stuck with me. They had spray painted the entire bike, wheels, petals and all one solid color, like blue or purple. And they planted coordinating flowers in the baskets. Very cute. Rusty does it for me too though :)

Cindy, I thought the same thing as Michelle when you mentioned edging plants. Deanne is the master of that.

Good news that Phoebe has made a full recovery. Jenni told me this morning that she's signed Magglio up for training classes. Bella says he's a bad dog because he nips at her. As much her fault as his though I'm afraid. I think we need to sign her up too :)

No mummified creatures found here...yet.


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 2:31PM
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I'm home a little early because I finished the panels for the screen room enclosure I've been working on. Tomorrow I get to rip down some bar stools and reupholster those. The Meme who lives upstairs turned 88 on Sunday. We had a cake for her today, presenting her with a card and a Verbena for her deck. She started to blubber (always does that)until we told her a few dirty jokes and got her laughing. Next week she has to go to the urologist to have a cancer bustin' drug put into her bladder. The treatment will be weekly for 6 weeks and we're going to switch off taking her to the appointments and will keep her in the shop with us for the required 1-2 hrs., so she won't forget and pee before the time requirement has elapsed. It's all part of the service! :)

The painters are here today and they've been pressure washing the road facade of the house. It looked pretty strange to see it looking "brown" and not weathered grey. I am a little concerned about what the bleach and water is going to do to the plants in the beds, but this is standard procedure and our's can't be the first house with perennials around its foundation. I figure if I water heavily after they've finished it will further dilute the bleach. They are under orders to greet Rex upon their arrival and under no circumstances is he to be permitted to jump. They know "Off!" and are prepared to use it. He was a perfect gentleman this morning.

It was a porcupine and it's in a cardboard box (along with some lucky maggots) for my perusal. I'll snap a few shots of it for you, Saucy. I am not particularly freaked out by dead animals; it gives me a chance to really "scope 'em out", though sometimes the smell can get me.

'bug, I totally understand the lapse in training while recovery is underway. It's the same thing with Rex. It's hard to make a dog "sit" when he has a bum hind leg. And he has taken full advantage of the opportunity to challenge us and improve his status in the "pack", lol. Silly boy... it's already right back to basics and Mummy has NO pity for an upstart brindle boy.

Eden, those flowers are so pretty. I'm a complete sucker for the very soft pink, anyway. and I love the Brunnera you linked, very arresting. I recall "raising" caterpillars when I was a kid, too. Mum told me how to identify the apple tree and we kept careful watch to make sure there were plenty of leaves for the hungry little creatures. I recall having equal fun raising mealworms... and there were some albino ones in the mix, too. All efforts lavished on creating curiosity about the natural world and not a fear/loathing of it will go a long way toward protecting our beautiful world from needless destruction.

Gotta go check out the carrion. ;) Deanne, did you get any shots of the mummified woodchuck? (sorta like the Wicked Witch of the West with her stockinged feet withering away under the fallen cottage). I totally cracked up at the image of a turkey vulture hanging out on the shed roof trying to hone in on the smell and a tastey morsel. Too funny.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 2:39PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

No puppies as of this morning when we left for work. I have worried about her all day.

All this talk of dead animals! LOL

I live down the road from a fascinating business called Skulls Unlimited International. They 'clean' dead animals and produce skulls/skeletons. I saw the process on 'Dirties Jobs' once. Not a pretty sight!

"Skulls Unlimited International Shipping Instructions

1. Raw heads need to be drained of excess moisture.

2. Freeze heads prior to shipping.

3. Wrap heads in newspapers to absorb excess moisture.

4. Tie heads in multiple plastic bags to prevent excess moisture seeping out and ruining shipping box.

5. Ship specimens in either a Styrofoam or hard-sided cooler. You may also use a sturdy box and fill box with cedar woodchips to absorb excess moisture and control odor. Hard-sided coolers will be returned upon request.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 4:20PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Hmmm.. after all the talk of dead bodies, perhaps something more cheerful is required!

Deanne - if you liked the sheaf of little tulips, perhaps you will enjoy them in this combination that is glowing in the driveway border this afternoon. I call it 'essence of sunshine' :-)

Turkestanica botanical tulips and Darwin Hybrid Tulips 'Ivory Floradale'

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 4:32PM
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OK, let's get back "on topic", you guys! I could have had a brilliant career in forensic science, I think...

I am amazed by this perfect little creature. And I've thought a great deal about how the little tyke died. But what a treat to be able to see how big a baby porcupine is (about 6"L) and how long the quills are (no longer than 1 1/4"). Also amazing at how efficient Nature is in dealing with its casualties.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 4:56PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

When cross country skiing I have seen these guys quite close up on trees. They are very destructive and my friend has had to figure out their control to save her barn. I'll have to ask what her solution was. I do know that their quills are a horror to dogs who can't resist anything that moves. Vets often have trouble removing all of the quills.

I hope they stay away from here. Dealing with skunks is hard enough.

DD always loved studying animals "in detail". "Daddy, can we dissect the cow's eye?" "Just a minute honey while I get ready!"

DS: "Mommy, look what my biology teacher gave me!!! Let's dissect them now!" Honey, I'm preparing dinner now. Maybe Daddy will help you later. Keep them in the refrigerator until he gets home, OK?"
You are right. Both "kids" have great love and respect for the out of doors.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 5:20PM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

You gotta wonder... are the quills soft until after the birth?!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 5:26PM
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I could've done without the maggots, but the rest is pretty interesting! Woody, the answer to that question will gnaw a hole in my brain tonight, LOL! I live right around the corner from Tufts Veterinarian School of Medicine and I am this close to calling to find out :)

Bicycle stayed in the basement for one more day....regular source for spaghnum moss is dry! I'm going to check a few more places.

I put together some fabulous combos today and would love to show them off, but still no camera. I even tried to hook up the old luck. Hope I don't have to drag these pots in, LOL! I couldn't wait anymore and everything has been spending it's time hardening off so beautifully!

I am chatty and no one here to talk to. Nick's at some off the wall men's meeting (he was asked to bring three sticks of firewood and a gallon of water?!?). Is this some secret society I should worry about? LOL, curiosity finally got the better of him and he decided to go. The kids are running amok in the neighborhood. They found the first turtle hatchling of the year and released him in the wetlands after a good long look :)

I guess I could clean up my deck, it's covered in potting soil :)

ps - bees are being picked up this weekend! My hive is in route! The rise in popularity of beekeeping has really made it tough to get all my materials in a timely manner...everything was backordered...other sources were dry, too. These bees had better deliver alot of fun for me, LOL!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 6:51PM
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Maggots creep me right out, too, Saucy. Something about the way they wiggle around not to mention what they are "all about". shudder. BUT, they're pretty amazing, themselves. Blows my mind that maggots have been used to clean up gangrenous flesh and have saved humans from amputations.

Jerri, that site you linked is amazing! Think they can process a skull more efficiently than a team of maggots could? LOL.

MMmmm... time for dinner, you guys!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 6:59PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

OK everyone, ROTFLOL! You know Chelone, I'd thought about taking a pic but thought I'd offend the sensibilities of some here. Maybe I'll do it. The mummy is currently residing on one of my garden benches. te he... I guess I have a bit of a sick sense of humor. ~~Interesting baby porcupine. It looks a bit like a hedgehog.

Saucy, I'm selling off three digital cameras in several mpx ratings. Let me know if you are interested. ~~~ Way cool that you are getting your bees! ~~~~ LOl maggots and dinner in the same sentence. Doug and I split a bottle of nice red, had some blue chips and taboule and are going to go out for ice cream for our dinner tonight. I'm on vacation this week right?

Woody!!!!!!!! Woohoo!!!! that combination is to die for. Gorgeous, gorgeous! I need to find a place to do that.

Eden, have you noticed all the bike planters at Home Goods these days? I used to really like that idea until I saw so many at HG, but, the idea of painting it purple is way cool. ~~ Your tree peonies are beautiful.

Michelle, love the idea of a 'Blueberry Pie Plant'. Too funny! Glad to hear you've gotten some work done outside and finally are having some spring weather.

OK I'm fading fast and Doug wants to run out for that ice cream.

Have a great evening all, Hopefully there will be pics from Kathy when I return. ... how long is Denise going to be gone?


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:24PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

LOL Woody!...Now I hadn't thought of that until you asked, but you sure did make me chuckle! :-)

And thanks Deanne for reminding *me* that "One of the reasons I love this forum is because its ok to ramble on, say something to everyone, or just pop in for a quick hello."

So with that I did my pop in, but hope to be back before the week-end to ramble on! :-)

BTW, I will be going grocery shopping tomorrow and will look for your mag! I'm so excited for you and look forward to seeing you in print! Congratulations! :-)

Have lots I'd like to comment on, like Michelle's beautiful rainbow show, Eden's gorgeous tree peonies and 'Starry Eyes'! That could make a brunnera lover out of me. Actually, I admire the looks of brunnera, just am very tactile in the garden and hate that itchy! :-)

Hope everyone is having a great day....I can't remember who mentioned Santana, but here's my favorite Santana song; it is actually Carlos Santana's brother's song:

Laaaa-ah-ah, la-la, laaaa-ah-ah
Laaaa-ah-ah, la-la, laaaa-ah-ah

Never, i never meet a girl like you in my life
I never, no, no, yeah
I never meet a girl like you in my life

The way that you hold me in the night
The way that you make things go right
Whenever you're in my arms
Girl, you're filling me with all your charms

Suavecito, mi linda
The feelin' i have inside for you
Suavecito, mi linda

The feelin', the feelin' that i have inside for you
'cause ever since the day i met you
I knew you that you were my dream come true
But i think i've found that day
Gonna make you mine in every way

Suavecito, mi linda
(baby now)
That we've got the kind of love
I can't believe that it's really true
'cause you know that, girl, i love you
I need you
Love yoooooou

All i want is you
If i can't have you
I don't know what to do

La-la, laaaa-ah-ah
La-la, laaaa-ah-ah
La-la, laaaa-ah-ah

Never, i never meet a girl like you in my life
I never, no, no, yeah
I never met a girl like you in my life
'cause i know we'll always be
Together just you and me
From here on you're gonna see
You'll be mine until eternity

Suavecito, mi linda
(baby, now)
That we've got the kind of love
Suavecito, mi linda
I can't believe that it's really true
'cause you know, girl, that i love you
(suavecito, mi linda)
I need you
I looooooove you

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:36PM
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The band was called, Malo? I really liked that one, too, Ei..

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 7:38PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Yeah's a great song to dance to with the one you love too! A little funny...I've been playing it here real loud and dancing around the house to it...being silly and trying to get hubby to dance *with* me....not terribly cooperative though. :-) I told him if we played great music like this all the time, I would *always* be in a good mood"...he countered with "yeah, well if you served me good wine all the time, I'd always be in a good mood too! :-) LOL! We will be married 28 years this week....even if he isn't much of a music appreciator and I'm not much of a wine appreciator ( that a word? and did I spell it right?) Anyway, he brought me home a sweet little surprise tonight:

Isn't it the cutest thing? It's a cake all made out of flowers. I *love* it...but am I terrible? I was kind of wishing it was the real thing
(cake, I mean)! :-)
I'm a cake addict! Or even better; this *and* a real cake...I suppose that's just greedy..LOL! Anyway, I love my gift and am just tickled that he remembered! :-)
I wish I could preserve this thing just as it is and put it in one of those domed cake servers and use it as a permanent centerpiece.


    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 8:51PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Now isn't that just the cutest low cal idea! Congratulations Ei & Paul! Still time for the real thing this week too. Hehehe.

Maybe you could use the photo somehow....for invitations or place cards?

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 10:14PM
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Okay, so I am offsetting corpus delecti animal stories and pics with a baby. Avert your eyes if you cant take it:

Notice the attractive outfit that DD dressed Aiden in for my visit. This made him far more tolerable.

Mr Baby enjoys the fish tank. Note the drool.

A pic caught between flops-the requisite 'funny hat pic' ..he does flop quite a bit.

It was spring in Oregon- dogwoods, tulips, flowering trees- was told it was late. Like us they have had a very cold spring with frost and snow much later in the year than usual. My trip was productive as far as real estate searches go, I was able to identify the neighborhoods that I want to concentrate on , and learned all about the deer population ! Naturally the areas I like best have the buggers- they reclined on peoples front lawns , strolled down the streets etc. We took lots of photos of some beautifully done deer fencing for the idea file.

A few comments:

Deanne, I picked up the FG container maghow fun to have a garden buddy make the grade. So now weve had a Michelle container and 2 Deanne containers in FG. We are the bomb ! Now they need to get over to Denises to get west coast vibe ..

Marie, glad to hear that the little hellion has shed her shackles at last. Fear not, one day she will be a mature adult. One day.

Chelone, I thought that the short duration of the tree peony bloom was a zone 9 and up deal. Now I hear the same issue from you-5 days, dont go on vacation. This year was one of my shortest in a few years. Had 3 flowers (this from a 10 year old plant) and they were 3-day wonders. But what exquisite flowers ! I want a yellow one some day.

Michelle, what a great rainbow shot-bet you were really jazzed at the results.

This is all for me tonight, sorry I cant comment and greet everyone, but will try to make up for it over the weekend

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 11:07PM
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Mr. Baby has debuted. I giggled at the outfit and wondered why they didn't have him propped up with a baseball mitt. To be fair, Kathy, if I spent too much time looking a that very cool aquarium I'd probably drool, too. How old is he now? he's still in the "blob stage" in my eyes. ;)

28 yrs., Ei.? good for you two. The flower cake is quite clever, but I'm with you... gimme the real McCoy. The helpmeet has a birthday coming up and it will be the perfect reason for a very decadent cake.

My brother and I are going to make the first foray of the year to Mum's home. Time to turn on the water and make sure the boiler is up to snuff and ready to go. Then we plant to make a punch list of things that have to be done to keep the structure in sound and good working order so we may rent or sell it. We have to look at the contents and decide what we'd like to keep and what will go. We've agreed to call our cousins who have grown children just "starting out" who might be interested in some of the furniture and/or cookware. Some of it is quite nice and it seems a pity to sell it to a jobber if people we know and love might derive some benefit from it. We are also going to pass the old "family" photos along to my cousin who's interested in geneology; seem to make more sense to give them to family who is reproducing than to stockpile them ourselves, you know? Anyway, it'll be a long day and I'm crossing my fingers there are is no wildlife in the house (dead squirrel last year).

The forecast for the weekend isn't too bad, actually. Maybe I'll be able to salvage a day/two in the gardens, some of which are still not cleaned out!

I bagged the Monarda completely, Michelle... looked like hell in our humid locale and ran every which way in the gardens. It went to someone with a lovely big area where it could do its thing and then look crummy and it didn't really matter. :) That line of blue spruces is a really handsome barrier (they wouldn't like the wet area I have to address, though). I'm a softy for glaucus foliage. Have fun at the graduation this weekend.

Gotta get about my way. Later!

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 5:24AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Well, there he is....and what a cutie he is too!! That first photo looks like he is warming up his arm His eyes are so big and blue! Look at how mesmerized he is with the fish. Which is a beautiful fish tank, btw. How old is he now, Kathy? How are the Mom and Dad doing? Any sleeping through the night yet? I can only imagine how excited they are that potential babysitter could be moving to their area soon. [g] I keep meaning to ask you, is your DS moving to Oregon too? Congratulations and glad to have more baby photos. Welcome, Aiden!


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 5:34AM
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In road rep speak, it's going to be a car wash rain day. Of course, I'm traveling to the far southwest corner of CT and will give myself LOTS of extra time.

Today is my Dad's 82nd birthday and all he wants is "good fish." Dinner it is on the River with just my parents, sister and me. I feel some serious conversation coming on, but it'll be good to be with them without DH and DB distractions.

I'll be growing peonies forever! One of my first flower memories was of a church lady giving me a peony, me cramming my face into it for a smell, and ending up with ants in my hair. I reportedly didn't care, while my Mom nearly fainted. LOL

Pics of my tree p.s will be posted, no doubt.

Welcome to the world of Idyllkids, Aiden! You are joining a very special group where there are lots of cool ideas and lots of imagination and lots and lots of agape. We'll forgive the outfit for now :-)

Seedlings are being hardened off. Rich has declared himself their daytime keeper and they're better for it. Chaulk up one more small benefit of him not working!

Did I mention that one of Ky's part-time jobs this semester is in a taxidermy shop? And he actually loves it? Jen's response was "I didn't know people did that anymore!!!!" I've suggested that perhaps the IT job at the college combined with a legislative intership would be the better full-time summer job for resume' reasons. LOL Fortunately, he agrees but is kind of tickled that he got to learn something about a "lost colonial art." Education comes in all forms, I guess.

Can't get motivated this morning so will have a Deanne and V.-sized cuppa and kick start the day.



    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 7:09AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

A sunny busy day ahead of me. Brighter for at last viewing Mr Baby! He looks older to me than I think his age would indicate. Perhaps it is his "deep thinker" pose while studying aquatic vertebrates.
Kathy, your comment has me worried: "Fear not, one day she will be a mature adult. One day." ONLY ONE DAY? I was hoping a bit longer than that...

Chelone, you and your brother have some big stuff ahead of you. I think you'll share some fine memories though and some laughs too. As to the photos, I'd suggest making copies of a few of the most meaningful. I hope things are up to snuff (and sniff) at Mom's place.

I'll leave you with the words from DD's Mother's day card:
forget about the cooking
forget about the cleaning
forget about the laundry...

Pretend you're Dad!

The card, signed by all individually, arrived with hand and footprints of my favourite baby boy and also a large chunk of chocolate with huge ginger pieces favourite from that basic food group!

Phoebe time now! We need to check the serviceberry for blooms.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 7:34AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)


Dead things,, what a crowd! Not much time to chat this morning. It's been a hectic week with work, the move and getting used to new routines. I continue to rack up Craig's List purchases. So far I've scored a kitchen set, lawn mower, gas grill and futon. I'm really glad I splurged on the new couch or my livingroom would consist of a coffee table and an old desk from my nana. So far my new bed hasn't come in but I've got the guest room fixed up pretty nice.

At any rate, the dogs are a bit discombobulated. I decided it was time to train them to sleep somewhere other than somebody's bed. They're restless sleepers and tend to want to get up at 4:30. For the past year or more they've been sleeping with Tom who would get up and complain every morning that he got a crappy night sleep. So, their night routine is now in the kitchen/breakfast room where they have their bed and day chairs. To repay me Nick starts fussing between 4 and 4:30-whining, yips, etc. My normal time to get up is 5:15 and I've been sticking to that. Any tips from you master dog trainers? If I tell him to stop he does but now that's becoming a pattern as well.

Happy Friday!


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 7:55AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Sue, I just lost my post...but essentially this is an idea. With babies at a certain age there's a method of getting them to STTN (sleep through the night). Known as CIO, crying it out, it is a simple matter of ignoring the behavior and carrying on as you think fit. The hardest part is really for the parent who wants to talk and soothe and feed and comfort, all the while being manipulated by their 10 month old who has succeeded in getting its way up to this point. If the parents tough it out, it usually works within about 3 days. Baby smiles and is happy and rested, Mom and Dad sleep once more. So sure your doggies have been spoiled rotten, but sleep is good. So I'd spoil them in different ways now...during daylight hours! Would a quiet radio alarm soothe them at 4am and help you ignore them for another hour or so?

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 8:55AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Yea - pics of Aiden!!
no time to chat but I did say I managed to glomb the FG mag this a.m. on my way to the ofc & saw our celebrity!! Quick comment.... I wondered why so many of the other regional folks were actual professionals -- either owners of garden centers/nurseries or seemed to be "professional container designers" -- hint, hint, Deanne!! You are in the right crowd.... it's nice to see the other folks are good at their "day jobs" though, LOL.

It's raining buckets and buckets here....

Happy Friday...

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 9:09AM
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wendy2(zone 6 MA)

Good cloudy morning!

A perfect garden day here, and I am once again stuck at work. Rain tomorrow, just in time for the weekend! DH is having my Mother's Day present delivered today - 4 yards of dark bark mulch (most people think I'm crazy, but I know you guys get it!). He'll also help me spread it, ferrying it to me my the wheelbarrow load. I've told him he's so good at helping that he could practically do the job by himself, but I think he sees through me.

Deanne, I have to say that you containers were the best-looking in that issue. You could fill an entire magazine with your lovely creations! BTW, one of the other regional ladies, I think it was Denver, has what looks like your mystery coleus from Nashville. I think she called it 'Aurora Raspberry'.

Chelone, the baby porcupine was interesting - glad you put the leaf in the shot for perspective. A perfect miniature.

I have a dead animal story for you - shortly after we moved into our house, an upstairs toilet leaked and sent water downstairs through the kitchen ceiling. After the plumber was done, DH and a neighbor were taking down the rest of the damaged ceiling late one night. I was upstairs, and they were being pretty noisy anyway, so I didn't think it strange when they erupted in shouts and laughter. Months later, long after the ceiling was closed up I got the real story: as they removed the ceiling, what they thought was a rat "jumped" out at them - it turned out to be the mummified carcass of a rat. DH didn't think I needed to hear that story at the time, and he is probably right. I would have wanted to carry an umbrella in the kitchen until the ceiling was repaired!

Well, duty calls. Back to the grind. Waving hello to all!


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 11:16AM
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Reading from the bottom up, trying to figure out the maggot reference was a trip. Stopped when I got to the photos :( He's perfect and I was fascinated with the pics Chelone.

I took today off since it was wet and cold and green and a day at a time is the only way I'll get any vaca this year. Decided I would make the 30 mile trek to the only real nursery left around here and see if I could find Melianthus Major and a Cotinus 'Golden Spirit.' Struck out on the first and the second was tiny and $79. So instead, I picked up an Acuba Picturata for a lot less, (I have two Mr. Goldstrikes), and a couple of tender annuals plus Hosta 'Stiletto' which I've been leaning towards for some time. I was smitten with a hosta called 'praying hands' and will probably grab that when it's on sale sometime. But today I decided the cupped wriggly leaves looked more like there was a fungus issue. Now, I'm working on an order from Forest Farm while we're in the affordable shipping period for that place. Cotinus GS there is just 12 for a tube, and I've had great success with their tublings in the past. I should add the Aesculus for V to the cart before I'm done? Actually a neighbor has a huge stand of it. Have been thinking to ask him if I could dig some of the babylings that are on the outer edges of the 12 foot stand. It's stunning in bloom.

Driving home from nursery today, GPS was confused by the cloudy skies and sent me to another nursery instead of the highway. Nothing great there, but I liked the route. Then it thought I was off track and directed me to a dead end housing development. This happens whenever I get near NASA. Wonder if they need the satellites for things more serious than gettin' me home. Oh well, it's better to do this when the tank is full and I don't have to be somewhere in a hurry. Appreciated a passing vanity plate with the phrase 'NO NO'.

So this free day off has gotten away from me and is almost over. I scheduled a home visit for tonight so that I wouldn't disrupt my Saturday and now I've disrupted Friday instead.

Deanne, congrats on being recognized for your hard work and talent! I'm looking for the special edition and can't wait to see it.

Hope every one else is appreciating the little joys in life and getting past the lows.

I'll read more and catch up tomorrow....


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 4:26PM
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Welcome to the Idylls Aiden! Love the face in that 3rd photo Kathy :)

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 4:30PM
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Hello everyone

What an ecclectic group of posts we have today!!

Hooray for Mr baby! Hope he makes soem other appearances before maturity.

Ei - I love that cake. I saw a similar one at a friend's and thought it would be fun to duplicate. Congratulations on your 28 years together.

Chelone - in New Orleans the maggots are called "disco rice" amd are the bane of garbage collectors.

Busy end of the week here but DH and I are heading out to a movie together. I think I'll celebrate Friday with a glass of wine too.


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 4:38PM
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I guess I'm catching up now not later. Sue, Ignore whining, no response at all. But ignore for just 10 minutes for a few days, then get up and take him out. Keep it businesslike, no cuddles or nice talk, just OUT the door to potty then back in. Then ignore for 15 minutes for a few days. Keep up that pattern gradually resetting his clock, so that he starts the whining a little later each day, until you get to the point where the silence makes you wonder if he's dead and it's 5:15.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 4:38PM
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Ignore the whining, yips, Sue! Stick to your schedule, and endure the pissing/moaning from "below". It'll surely suck for a few days, but once the little ones realize it gains them nothing and they begin to reset their "clocks" it will get better. ZERO tolerance. You could always vent your rage with a pre-sunrise beating, too. :) I'm always in favor of beatings... that's why we have dogs, right?

Martie, thanks for the nursery tip. NOT the one I was expecting. I think Deerfield is more than 2 hrs. for me, but I'll check.

It's really busy at work right now. My boss is more freaked out than I am; I'll do whatever is required to meet the deadlines and I refuse to be freaked out by them. I see a lot of energy wasted on being freaked out. It's just easier to knuckle down and work harder and longer. I sum this up to dealing with an infirm, mentally challenged woman for 3 1/2 yrs.. I'm "bomb-proof"... if it isn't a crisis, I don't worry about it and keep pluggin' along. If it IS a crisis, I coolly reassess and make the necessary changes in course. I rule the work, the work doesn't rule ME.

Which reminds me of Marian... . I hope you're well and enjoying the emerging spring. :) I think of you often. And fondly.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 4:47PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

I meant to tell you, Michelle - I personally want pepperoni in my garden too - yum.... I've seen the ideas before of a kid's pizza garden, but the pepperoni escaped the concept... pepperoni & blueberries - a kid's tummy for sure!

Love that cake, Ei -- how sweet of him to remember. Congrats on the 28 -- what perserverance!

Hey, Cynthia - I bought the Stiletto too -- altho I have yet to find the spot for it; wow' that's pricey for the Cotinus. I think I mailordered the melianthus last year; then actually saw it in a local nursery last year - go figure.... there's never much logic to what you will find where.

Okay, I've got a couple more things to finish up before blast-off from DC...

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 5:21PM
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I slept right through my check in here this morning :) I did peek/read, but no time to post.

Hello Mr. Baby! That is one spectacular fish tank - I'm drooling, too. You have lots of wisdom in that face of yours :)

I think you should get Tom to come over and let the dogs out, Sue. Or, you might take the advice of others here :)

I did love the rainbow picture, and could only think of Dorothy and Toto. Hint to Kenzie that chocolate mint (grown in a pot!) makes good homemade ice cream. I steeped the leaves in the cream before adding all the ingredients for a chocolate chip recipe.

Chelone, I wish DH could be as level headed in business matters, but alas, I guess one of us must lie awake at night :) He's actually gotten much better at letting go, so I should ease up on the jokes. Good to take care of the upstairs neighbor.

I still don't have my issue of FG and am jealous of those who do. I have not been close enough to the grocery yet. Hopefully tomorrow.

Who was it that watches Lost? Sarah and I save it on the DVR and then I have to give it a run down before we watch the highlights can have some if-y stuff for her, though she loves her drama :) Tonight's episode looks like we'll be left even more lost :)

Survivor was so fun last night....Sue, did you catch it? That boy didn't know what hit him :)

I'm chatty again. Nick's out picking through scholorship applications. Oh...last night's secret meeting brought him home smelling like fire. He said it's still a mystery, as you have to attend a "retreat" to get the whole deal. LOL, I was sure he'd get a fez and a beer drinking card for the Elks club or Moose lodge :)

TTYL...gotta go clean this house so I can spend my day chipping up a tree tomorrow! Free woodchips!


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 6:38PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Afternoon all,

Im absolutely beat, beat, beat. Doug laughs at me because he cant figure out how and why I keep working in the garden until I literally stumble into the house, but, there is sooooo much to do this time of the year. Ive gotten two of the terraces completely mulched with our home cooked leaf compost and everything moved and planted.

Today Doug helped me set up two cold frames and we got all the upstairs plants, mostly coleus outside! Woohoo!!! Ive had these cold frames for two years and only am getting around to assembling them now. Silly me, check this out, they really are perfect. Weve got them set up in the area on the hill behind the gate where we normally park our utility trailer. That area is surrounded by a rock wall and it should keep things warmer. (Can you believe I had all those plants in the house under lights? LOL)

Thanks so much everyone for all the kind comments RE the FG article. You are all the best!!!!!

Eileen I just love the flower cake! Congratulations on your 28th! Thats fabulous.

Chelone, I LOVE your work attitude. I want you on my team!

Mary, Doug and I are indulging in a lovely bottle of Cabernet as a reward for our hard work. Ahhh nothing like Fridays. ~~~ Did you want Doug to drop off some plants next week?

Cynthia, sure wish you lived closer, Mixed Border has good sized Cotinus Golden Spirit for $49.00 and I got a 10% discount on top of that.

Yea Wendy!!!! Just exactly the perfect Mothers Day present as far as Im concerned. ~~ It WAS a perfect garden day. The temps were cool enough to be comfortable and there was a bit of breeze to keep the voracious black flies at bay. Im currently sporting some massive welts from the drasty insects. (One is in the exact middle of my forehead and looks ridiculous.) For some reason as soon as I get a black fly bite all my other allergies kick into high gear. I sneezed so hard a few times today I thought I was going to lose my brains out my nose.

Hello to Mr. Baby alias Aiden. I see hes already a Dodgers fan. That works out well.

Kathy, I totally agree that FG needs to feature some of Denises brilliant work. Not to mention a slew of other incredible and talented gardeners here.

OK time to put my feet up and go through the rest of the pics I took this afternoon of my newly mulched terraces. Ill post a few pics later.


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 6:48PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Saucy, DH and I watch it on Friday nights where you are? It is on Thursdays here. I watched it last night and it was actually a little easier to follow than the last episode. How old is Sarah? Are you renting a chipper for your tree and doing it yourself tomorrow?

Have peonies for the first time this year. They already have peony rings on them and have started growing up through them. Lots of buds, I can't wait!

Chelone...good luck with the visit to Mum's house. You are both very lucky, you and your brother, to have each other and to feel close. It has to make it so much better. :-)

Mother's Day...loving the thoughtful gifts already being received. Mulch is a great one. Was it Mary that received the lemon cake? Loved the card G'bug, with the footprints...and the sentiments in regard to DH, My DH is taking me to a nursery tomorrow and lunch.

That cake you received Ei, was that for your Anniversary? 28 yrs...goes by fast doesn't it? We will be celebrating 30 later this year. Doesn't seem possible. Very pretty cake, maybe you can dry at least some of the flowers from it?

Happy Friday.. :-)


Amazing display of coleus Deanne!! Those are some interesting looking coldframes, would be interested to hear how you think they work out.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 7:47PM
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My internet connection didn't work all day. Finally got it back just a little while ago. My house is totally clean. Brad even vacuumed the basement. Laundry is all done too. Downside is not much playing in the garden the last few days. Jen and I are going plant shopping tomorrow though.

Kathy, I think Aiden is just the cutest thing! I love his tummy and his little cheeks. Thanks so much for the pictures of him

Deanne, that's some coleus collection you've got there. Just think how much it would cost you to go out and purchase all those plants. Isn't being bone tired from gardening all day just the best feeling?

Sue I think it's great that you get to start fresh putting together furniture that's just what you want.

I payed $50 for my cotinus gold spirit too for a good size one. I wonder if I got a lemon though. It's just not doing well for me this spring.

Cynthia, hosta talk? I went through a period 2 or 3 years ago when I was collecting some unique (strange)ones. Here's mine...


Praying Hands still emerging. This one gets lots of comments. It's different!

Here's another I have that's alot like Stiletto called Chartreuse Wiggles. Smaller leaves though.

And from yesterday a mermaid and her dog listening to music


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 7:53PM
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Eden, I like the brunnera Starry Eyes. What color is the foliage?

Hurrah for Pheobes!

Very pretty Woody. Apt title. So do the Turkestanica botanical tulips tend to naturalize?

Cute cake Ei. Happy Anniversary.

And even cuter baby to follow . All male, baseball and fishing. LOL Thats an awesome looking fish tank. Sounds like your trip went well Kathy. Welcome back.

LOL Bug, I like the card verse.

I don't know if I'm more awed by the fish tank or Deannes cold frames. The area is perfect Deanne. Thank you so much for posting the obelisk picture. I caught DH in the right frame of mind and he was able to make me a simalar one. I have wanted one for a long time.

Well this Idyll sure is jumping all over the place. Keeps it interesting huh?

It is still raining here and was pretty chilly today. Yesterday I managed to slip some hard to pull weeds out of the saturated ground. This morning I started to plant a Blue Angel Hosta, but it started raining again. I have felt kinda punk the last couple of days otherwise I would have stayed out there anyway and pulled more weeds and moved plants. I didn't even feel up to going nursery and I need to.

Cynthia, blaming the gps for lost nursery trips isn't going to cut it. LOL

Waving hi to all. I'm going to go play guitar for awhile. Norma

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 8:47PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

All of a sudden Bella looks more like a beautiful little girl than a cute baby.

Saucy, yes, was Survivor a hoot last night or what? Talk about a dumb a$$. I missed the first half but figured I caught the best of it.

Thanks for the dog training tips. I know ignore is the way to go but I'm a light, restless sleeper and have a hard time lying there listening to the fuss when I know a few stern words will stop it cold. Maybe tonight I'll try earplugs. Cynthia, potty isn't the goal-they want's their god, they know no Part of the problem I suspect is the paper delivery. Since the retirement of the previous delivery person, the paper has been arriving between 4 and 4:30-often with a thud against the front door. Sometimes it wakes me up. At any rate, I knew the dogs would have the hardest time adjusting to this change. Tom worked less hours and was home more than me so they spent more time with him by default. It's an issue that will be ongoing. Tom is working on getting the yard at his house fenced so they can spend time there. For now I'm trying to be home and interacting with them as much as possible.

Tonight I spent over an hour reassembling the futon I bought from Craig's List. It had been taken completely apart so I could fit it into my SUV but I didn't watch the disassembly. When I started I had no idea what I needed to do but I was determined to figure it out. After staring at the pieces for a few minutes and not having a clue how the hardware worked I decided to do a google search. Hooray for google! The job is done. Now if I can just find a troubleshooting guide for motion sensor I won't even tell you how my first lawn mowing experience went. When will I ever have time to garden? Needless to say it's been a long week.

Best I get my butt out tomorrow and find a copy of Deanne's Fine Gardening debut, eh? I'll put it at the top of my endless list.

Fading fast. Night all!


    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 9:59PM
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LOL @ nude Bud and Bella the Beauty :)

Bud seems like the kind of dude that doesn't mind if Saucy gets the giggles over his nekkidness!

Yes, Sue, that boy got broad sided :)

'night all.



Pretty cool frames,'s better than a nursery! Your babies are happy here :)

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 10:10PM
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Only worked two days this week but what an ordeal it is sometimes to come back from being away. I have open house tomorrow so no rest for me- fortunately the house is relatively clean so the prep should not be too arduous.

So much to comment on too ! Glad those of you who can bear to look at baby photos enjoyed Aidens pics. You should see that little dudes wardrobe ! DD made quite a killing-new stuff and barely worn hand me downs too. Not to mention all the infant accessories that were not invented yet when mine were tiny folk. For those who inquired , Mr Baby was born the end of Feb so that makes him about 3 months. And he does wobble quite a bit, lol. Floppy as hell in fact.
DD and her partner love their fish tank and take really good care of it. Its very clean and the fish are healthy. It is a freshwater tank and I think 55 gals? DD says sometimes they prop Aiden up on the couch and he likes to stare at it (per the drool photo).

Deanne, I must admit to stifling a giggle at the spectacle of your porta-coleus display. Is an intervention in order ? FG could do a whole issue on you alone-to heck with those other people ! Could you e-mail me with info about the cameras you are selling ? My DS might have an interest.

I have followed with interest(and admiration) Chelones story of Meme above the shop. Is she a relative to anyone at the business ? Does her family perhaps own the business ?
I had not a single ill effect to any plants when my house was pressure washed in March. I think the bleach solution they use is extremely diluted.

Eileen, congrats on your 28th . So rare that seems these days.

Monarda- I have had abysmal luck with that plant. Have put it in twice, and had not a single bloom. Someday I will try again, despite its thuglike reputation. It is commonly sold here so I can only assume that I did not position it properly.

Martie, taxidermy ? What will your Ky come up with next ? Thinking maybe you have a Renaissance man developing there. Let us know when he decides to apply at Cordon Bleu , or the Sorbonne.

Sue, its an interesting time when a spouse is gone and you are able to make unilateral decisions. After my DH passed away I found this ability to do whatever I wanted to (within reason !) helped me get through the grief period. Even stupid little things like how to arrange the garage and what meals would consist of.

Cynthia, I gave away my Melianthus last month to one of my employees who is trying to do tropicalissimo around her pool. They are pretty common here , and can live through the winter in the ground. Hope your Katie is ok and all the fur-kids are well.

Eden, your hosta pics were way-cool. It is really difficult to keep them going here because of the horrible snail damage one has to have a very hands-on approach and never let up all season to have decent plants. Bella looks quite elegant propped up against Mr Jumbo-dog.

Ok, time for some baseball.. and extra Hi to Saucy, Mary, Norma, PM, bug, Cindy, Wendy, Woody , and I hope I didnt miss anyone.

In closing, Idylls rock !

And a pic or two

Sally and Eden

Jeanne la Joie and avery cool Viburnum guarding the gate to the back garden.


Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 10:53PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Darn! I think I bought the wrong Fine Gardening Issue!
:-( It said 8 simple container designs and I thought...this has to be the one,but I don't see Deanne's. So it's their issue with *just* containers, Deanne? I'm going to look again tomorrow. Seeing your cold frames made my jaw drop! Fabu-Fabu, as you would say. Really, everything you do is always so amazing and professional looking, and awe inspiring.

Aww, Kathy! He's *adorable*! :-) I love all his pics, but that last pic really got to me with his chubby little tummy and sweet, sweet face. You can't tell me that you didn't go gaga when you saw him. :-) Precious!

I just read Jerri's post/link on Molly the put a lump in my throat...what a sweet story. Thanks for sharing that Jerri. Any babies yet?

I have to admit I avert my eyes and scroll till I'm sure I'm passed Chelone's porcupine...LOL! I've got a weak stomach.

LOL Wendy & Deanne your post mortum stories cracked me up (and gagged me too...sorry)! What a guy your hubby was Wendy, not to share that with you right away. I think I would have had the heebee jeebees too! :-)

Cynthia, if you get that Cotinus Golden Spirit, would you let us know how it turns out? I've had my eye on it for awhile, but read conflicting reports on whether it holds its golden color throughout the season. I would love to know. It sure is a beauty! Also, I guess I'm being nosy, but I can't resist a mystery and you didn't share about Wyoming...what was the secret?

Those hostas are very cool Eden! Funny I was thinking to myself..."look at that little doll Bella...she looks just like a beautiful little mermaid!" and then I read your caption! :-) I think I'm going to have to get that hosta "stilleto". Have you been working on your bog garden? Can't wait to see what you've created!

Mary...I've been meaning to tell you. Have you ever perused Ebay? I was just there today and you should see how well needle felted animals are doing! There are some really lovely ones being made by artists, but yours are every bit as lovely! Many are going for well over $100.00. Of course I know you do it for the joy of it, but if you ever wanted to persue it, I know you would do very well.

Sue, sounds like the pups are a bit of a challenge right now, with the changes in your life, but I'm glad you have custody. It sound like you are doing a lot of nesting for yourself, good for you. Hope you will share some pics when you're ready. It must make you feel a good about yourself for being so self reliant with *all* the things you've been doing and getting that futon back together too! Good for you! :-)

PM2...I've been meaning to tell you how much I enjoyed your Swan and Cygnat lovely. And thought how sweet you were when you said it made you cry. You're a softy...but I understand - I probably would have been crying with you! :-) What a lovely place you have and what lovely views!

Thanks for the anniversary wishes guys! Yea, it's hard to believe it's been 28 years myself....Uh, I was a child bride, ummmm....married at 12, ah yeah, yeah...*that's the ticket! :-)

I took a few spring pics to post separately, but don't know if I'll get them up tonight. But my vote is for some spring at Monique's too! I *love* the way she uses color, echoing the ornament with the plant colors and all the fabulous shrubs and trees she would be a real treat to see! I hope Sue will share too, though I imagine you are pretty tied up with fixing up the house just now...but I have *always* admired your landscape...another pro!

P.S. Hi V....hope you're feeling better?

Okay, it's off to bed with me...I have to be at my friend's sale at 7:30 a.m. She works for a nursing home that has a greenhouse and the workers and the seniors who reside there work all winter to prepare for the sale. They do a wonderful job, but I think they sell their plants too cheap and everything is nearly gone by 8:30 a.m.!

Good Night All!

Oh, and just wanted to share this email that I received. It's a sweet story and the coolest thing about it is that there really is such a place!

The Daffodil Principle
Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, 'Mother, you must come to see the daffodils before they are over.'
I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead 'I will come next Tuesday', I promised a little reluctantly on her third call.

Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and reluctantly I drove there. When I finally walked into Carolyn's house I was welcomed by the joyful sounds of happy children. I delightedly hugged and greeted my grandchildren.

'Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in these clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these children that I want to see badly enough to drive another inch!'

My daughter smiled calmly and said, 'We drive in this all the time, Mother.'
'Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears, and then I'm heading for home!' I assured her.

'But first we're going to see the daffodils. It's just a few blocks,' Carolyn said. 'I'll drive. I'm used to this.'

'Carolyn,' I said sternly, 'Please turn around.'
'It's all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience.'

After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw a small church. On the far side of the church, I saw a hand lettered sign with an arrow that read, 'Daffodil Garden.' We got out of the car, each took a child's hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path. Then, as we turned a corner, I looked up and gasped. Before me lay the most glorious sight:

It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it over the mountain and its surrounding slopes. The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns, great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, creamy white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, and saffron and butter yellow. Each different colored variety was planted in large groups so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There were five acres of flowers.

'Who did this?' I asked Carolyn. 'Just one woman,' Carolyn answered. 'She lives on the property. That's her home.' Carolyn pointed to a well-kept A-frame house, small and modestly sitting in the midst of all that glory. We walked up to the house.
On the patio, we saw a poster. 'Answers to the Questions I Know You Are Asking', was the headline.

The first answer was a simple one. '50,000 bulbs,' it read.

The second answer was, 'One at a time, by one woman. Two hands, two feet, and one brain.'

The third answer was, 'Began in 1958.'
For me, that moment was a life-changing experience. I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun, one bulb at a time, to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountaintop. Planting one bulb at a time, year after year, this unknown woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. One day at a time, she had created something of extraordinary magnificence, beauty, and inspiration. The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles of celebration.

That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time-often just one baby-step at time-and learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time. When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world.

'It makes me sad in a way,' I admitted to Carolyn. 'What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at a time' through all those years? Just think what I might have been able to achieve!'

My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way. 'Start tomorrow,' she said.

She was right. It's so pointless to think of the lost hours of yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson of celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask, 'How can I put this to use today?'

Use the Daffodil Principle. Stop waiting.....
Until your car or home is paid off
Until you get a new car or home
Until your kids leave the house
Until you go back to school
Until you finish school
Until you clean the house
Until you organize the garage
Until you clean off your desk
Until you lose 10 lbs.
Until you gain 10 lbs.
Until you get married
Until you get a divorce
Until you have kids
Until the kids go to school
Until you retire
Until summer
Until spring
Until winter
Until fall
Until you die...

There is no better time than right now to be happy.
Happiness is a journey, not a destination.
So work like you don't need money.
Love like you've never been hurt, and,
Dance like no one's watching.

Don't be afraid that your life will end, be afraid that it will never begin.

If you want to brighten someone's day, pass this on to someone special. I just did.

Wishing you a beautiful, daffodil day!

(BTW, this last pic isn't from the Bauer's garden, just so I don't misrepresent them - it's from mine).

Good Night All! Ei

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 12:18AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Oops...just checking my post and saw your's Kathy...YUummm!
You really can grow those roses! They're all spectacular, but I'm in love with your Eden. I don't think she'd be as wonderful for me though. BTW, do you have any pics of your Shakespeare 2000 to share? Love to see your!

Good Night Now!


    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 12:21AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Eden, I am in awe of anyone who can say 'my house is totally clean' during spring. [g]

Sue, when you find the troubleshooting info for motion sensing lights, send it this way. I can never figure out how to work mine.

Kathy, do slugs bother even the new thicker leaved Hostas there? Wow, that Sally and Eden together is my idea of a gorgeous combo. They are wonderful together. You must have had so much pleasure to come home to roses popping!

Ei, that Daffodil Story really is a great reminder of what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it. Glad you enjoyed the swans. Taken at a Pond nearby, haven't been in awhile, but will try to bring home some photos again, soon.

I second requests for spring pics from Sue and Monique's garden!

Off to Maine this morning for a very short daytrip. DH is in dire need of a break from the routine and since it is Mother's Day weekend and there is a favorite nursery on the way, we are off this morning. A rare occurrence for us and despite the gray skies, it will be the only chance we will have to go for awhile. Can't wait to soak in some ocean breezes. Will wave, Chelone, as we pass your exit!

Enjoy your weekend!

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 5:52AM
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Hi Everyone
Ei, I have always wanted to go see those gardens, and knowing that next year is the last makes me think we should have an early idyll trek to CA next spring:)

Wanted to give you all an update. My brother passed away this week,very suddenly at home.The funeral is this morning. He was a happy guy, living on his own, on his own terms. He left the nursing home against half the families advice, and with the help of the other half. We had been going to the gym, he was doing water aeorbics, etc. We actually went out and bought a bunch of flowers for his little garden plot outside his apt. a couple of weeks ago.He went to Windsor, Ontario on the gambling bus with my sister week before last, and his ex-wife and he went to dinner last Friday. I am glad it worked out like this, and not with the whole family fighting over decisions to be made as far as life support. That had not been fun the last couple of times. Jenny had her baby last Friday:) Cutie pie, Nina Marie, 9lb 1 oz, beautiful, of course. I am going to try to post some pics of her after the out of town family leaves tommorrow.

Deanne, I LOVE your new camera. Wow! Fabulous photo of the bee, and Congrats on being in Fine Gardening.

I think of everyone often, don't know why I can't seem to get to post. Looking for a job, adjusting to new life.


    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 7:46AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Drema, so sorry about your brother. It sounds like his life ended under the best possible circumstances though and it's hard to ask for more.

Ei, I forget to wish you a happy 28th! Your DH is a keeper and makes a mean margarita. I remember how much fun we had at your house for IU3. Such a peaceful relaxing space you've created...

Looks like we've got a decent day on tap here. Perfect for a trip to Maine, PM. Yesterday they were saying rain for the AM. Guess I'd better switch my focus to the outside jobs on my list. I still have a little bit of spring cleanup and plant moving to do. My goal is to make the front yard much lower maintenance. On Monday I took a day off and spent alot of the time digging and tossing perennials. More of the same today. Then it's hopefully going to be mulch it and forget it. Too funny-Kathy is growing beautiful roses and I'm digging them and tossing them

Melianthus...I had a gorgeous one in the patio garden last year. The foliage lasted well into late fall-maybe even early winter. You can see it in the far left of this picture. Oh lookee, there's a Cotinus 'Golden Spirit in this picture as well. As you can see, it holds it's foliage color. This one is in full sun.

Both the Melianthus and the Cotinus came from that nursery in southern VT that Steve Silk turned me on to. Speaking of that...Deanne, Monique, Wendy, Saucy...and anyone else who may be interested, we should plan a trip there soon. A link to their website is below.

Dogs were OK last night. Fussing started at 4:30. I ignored and actually fell back to sleep until 5:15. Both are napping now. Nick is tucked next to me in my chair. Needs his mommy this morning I guess. He was born on Mother's Day and will be 8 in four days.

OK, better get this show on the road.


    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 8:51AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

A very early morning for me. By 8am I'm ready for a nap!(of course I won't...) Two friends spent the night here and we went out for Indian dinner together. (DH is still in Germany) The Indian restaurant is really the only good food in town. Thank goodness there is ONE place fairly close by!(15 minutes from home)

It is a beautiful sunny day, the birds are singing and nesting. There are fish in the creek too. I need to make a trip to the dump...but other than that the day is mine! Will it be a nursery trip or simply garden puttering? Perhaps the visa card will buy me a Mother's day gift??? ;)

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 9:32AM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Ah GB, I feel the visa card calling your name. She wants to go with you to the nursery. ;)

I am glad to see the daff. story! I love that and I really need the reminder not to be overwhelmed.
I ordered a secretary/desk from Pottery Barn to go in my office at home. The problem is I have to clean out a bunch of junk to make room for it.

Still no puppies here, I cant believe it. Ill try and get photos of her today. Poor girl, she can hardly move! DH
doesnt want me to leave the house in case she goes into labor and hes here alone. I wanted to remind him
that its a first for me too. LOL

Im going to scroll back and drool over the garden photos. You guys are all amazing gardeners.

Im so happy its Saturday!


    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 10:59AM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Hello? Where is everyone?
I just got back from obedience class with Miss Annie. I need more training then she does, she is so smart it's scary. LOL
Well, I'm off to take Checkers, one of the new Pitties, to her new foster home. YIPPEE!


    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 5:10PM
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Not much time for a post right now, but wanted to say to Drema that though you will miss your brother I'm happy he had some quality time after being in such bad shape before.
And Congratulations on the new grandaughter. I love her name. Will be looking forward to pictures and maybe you could drop one in of Charlie too. hint hint Norma

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 5:34PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

What a nice visa card...I returned from my outing with a lavender digitalis, a soft orange epimedium, a white poppy, some deep purple aquilegia, a nice fern and a bit of cooking basil for the garden. All very nice, but danger of frost tonight. Eager for the end of May when that threat should end. Of course then I'll complain about biting insects...

Off to play with my "little" girl.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 5:38PM
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Drema hugs to you from me. Your brother sounds like he had a good strong will :) Sounds like he enjoyed his last days.

I'm so happy for Jenny! Nina Marie is a beautiful name. Tell her hello from me :)

I wish I hadn't missed IU3....I really want to see Ei and Michelle's :) Thanks for a peek, Sue!

Melianthus was purchased at Mapel Plants here in my town last year. I enjoyed it's green/gray foliage.

I bought some cannas today and a nice dark phormium. Also got two trees to place in honor of the tree we lost - a Northern Red Oak, and a Red Maple. Nice for 15 dollars at the depot.

We've been chipping branches all day and the operation is still going. I'm in to clean up myself and get a meal on - we're hungry :) I have some nice big piles of wood chips - I plan to spread them in the woods....we'll see.

I'd better get moving. Hope the pups come soon, Jerri! When's the next full moon? She'll look for dark and quiet, know, Nick and I were discussing one day how kids today don't learn about the birds and the bees (ties into this thread nicely :) the way we used to: dogs and cats giving birth. All my pets have been spayed or neutered. My mom used to rescue alot, Jerri, so I learned lots by watching that :)


LOVE the pictures of roses and daffodil story!

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 5:46PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Little 4 month old Nora the German Shepherd came to play with Phoebe this evening. It was perfect! They barked and pounced and yipped and nipped and sorted it all out and then went to the creek for a big drink. I'm so happy they are friends and now we think they'll go to puppy classes together soon!

The worst scene at the nursery was the husband who FOLDED the new Japanese Maple into the car accompanied by the shrieking of his partner. I couldn't bear to watch the outcome...and went and bought my early dinner, a sausage and bun with sauerkraut, and ate it in the sunshine.

Took a few photos and will try to post later.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 7:41PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

A perfect day here! The sun, a hummingbird, tree swallows, frog sounds too. Here are a few of the blooms as well.

Anemonella thalictroides...a double form...and a gift!

Corydalis lutea spreads everywhere...but I can't bring myself to call it a weed.

A Euphorbia "bloom".

And still some of this year's wonderful hellebores...

White hellebores with Brunnera Jack Frost.

Hostas are at various stages..but I liked this one.

Narcissus Thalia are a favourite.

The serviceberry is huge by now. The flowers are almost ready to pop!

My pot of violas has survived several frosts thank goodness.

There's so much work yet to do...but each day there's something new to see. A great time of year. The first black flies have arrived though.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 8:09PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

That was supposed to be a separate thread...sorry.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 8:12PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

I have a mastercard that is sooo wonderful to me -- it brought me the gift of a hibiscus blue satin, digitalis, a fantastic 3 gallon Cezanne Clematis on sale ($10!!; im gonna hate leaving that other one on sale Bourbon behind); a cool apricot colored fern whose name I forget, and some bletilla striata... it's amazing how thoughtful that MC can be, LOL...

On a serious note, Drema, Im so sorry to hear of the loss of your brother - count the extra time you had with him and it sounds like this last year has been full of joyful moments to remember about him -- concentrate on that and that wonderful new grandchild you had!! No wonder you are having a hard time idylling -- we'll be here when you're ready or just wanna lurk!! Hugs.

I was glad to have that MC be so nice to me today because it poured again this a.m. and no gardening got done; Im hoping to run to a furniture store to check out some sofas, etc., in the a.m. and squeeze some garden time in the afternoon if the weather holds up for a bit... In the meantime, the high here was about 67; very weird for May -- this is the latest I recall in years that the peonies are just budding up, iris being laggards, and the roses too are just really starting..

Gosh, the gorgeous rose photos, Kathy -- so intimidating -- my few are just starting but I dont think they'll put on as gorgeous a show as that -- but the M.A.C. is blooming -- not profusely, but still, she's being earnest ....

'bug dont be sorry - I love those photos -- it perked the place right up -- we need some live shots to go to past the mummy....

Deanne-- you DO need intervention....... let us know when Doug wants us to schedule it, LOL ... o my ... you'll need a whole separate garage for the containers needed too - are you investing in stock in one? or maybe you need to become friends w/ a potter!! Can't wait to see what gorgeous stuff you find.

I went looking for a Helmond's Pillar berberis - you'd think it would be easy to locate -- strange, no such luck so far... well, I did manage to console myself nevertheless with the other plant purchases, LOL.

I saw survivor too - I've somehow gotten sucked into that this year; it was amazing that guy was sooooo stupid.... I never understood how he'd managed to survive so long... Done in by the black widows -- loved it!! hehehe.... Im a Lost fan too but have missed the last couple (the recorder is still in the pile of non-operating equip of the basement....); I figure reruns will get me caught up in the summer if I miss though.

Cynthia, if you told me the GPS had all the best nurseries pre-programmed to take one to, I think I would definitely be buying one for myself....Im still thinking about it after your enthusiastic endorsement of it.....Plant detours, what a concept.

Happy early Mother's Day to all.. I know I could wish for perfect garden weather for each and it would be the perfect present.


    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 9:44PM
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Good Saturday all I spent all morning in a frenzy of cleaning to prepare for the open house this afternoon. We had a pretty good turnout, only 2 of them were neighbors. So , the house is clean and tomorrow I plan to spend the entire day puttering pleasantly in the garden. This is only a slightly more rigorous activity than SALATing.

Eden , I think the bike thing sounds really cool. Lots of possibilities-for a hot garden I could even see red , thinking of Gallardias , Heleniums, Coreopsis etc.

PM, I loved the lighthouse pic- the Oregon Coast has many very photogenic lighthouses. I grew up 4 miles from the ocean (in Denises zone 10 part of the world) and a part of me misses being near it to this day. Here in Norcal and the PNW it is always very cool-which is okay but you can forget growing tomatoes and peppers. If I was a zillionaire I would buy a 2nd home in Santa Barbara.
Slugs and Hostas: my issue here is primarily snails. We do have slugs ,but in fewer numbers. I have not experimented enough to know whether the heavy corrugated leaves fare better. I can tell you though that I have seen gigantic Hostas in Portland, and they have banana slugs up there. There may be hope for me one day ! Hope you had a fun outing today !

Drema, best wishes to you and your family. A new life and the passing of one- doesnt get much more elemental than that does it ? Hope you can post more often..

Im thinking a glass of wine on Eis porch would be just the thing- not to mention a chair plopped into Sues FF garden . Sue, I had fun viewing the Walker Farm plant lists- a bit of a commute for me though! It looks like an excellent nursery.

Wendy, you have done some excellent training if you can get your family to give you compost for M-day. Ive spent many a year trying to get my kids to disregard the M-day thing with some success. Im just not into it- however, if they were giving me compost I could reconsider !

Jerri, wondering if you are in a whelping mode this evening ?

bug, the Hosta ! Fabu-fabu pic. That just speaks to everything I love about Hostas-

And for Eileen, WS 2000 . The color is very hard to capture in a photo.

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 10:07PM
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Happy Mother's Day to all of you who've born fruit from your loins. Kathy, Mum loathed Mother's Day, too. She was more in favor of daily affection than one day a year of it, lol. Wendy's load of mulch and helping hands would have been right up her alley.

Drema, please accept my condolences on the death of your brother. Once more, Kathy summed it up beautifully. One life ends, a new life begins to take in the big, wide world. The circle of life is complete and seamless; Nina Marie is very pretty name... best to Jen. who's probably glad she's no longer pregnant.

Yesterday was a long day, but my brother and I did what we intended to do. There was only one thing that froze last winter, the little hose with the spray on the sink. Other than that, there was no damage and there was no sign of animals in the house, aside from some mouse droppings. There is a TON of work to do to the place, though. We are going to hold onto it for a bit; with an eye to using it as a seasonal rental. That way it will pay its taxes and we'll be able to get into it regularly to effect the repairs/renovations it will require over time. Mum's ashes are there and in honor of our time in the house we pulled it out of the closet and set her on the dining room table to enjoy our company and the usual jokes that spring up when my brother and I are together. Getting her to the cemetary is something we want to get done this summer. ;) DB took our grandfather's mahogany desk and all the family photos, which he plans to scan and put on CD. Older photos of long dead family will be directed to my cousins with children for posterity. I took a graceful settee that could look quite pretty in the Salon. I'm a little overwhelmed by the scope of what awaits us, but two practical people who love and respect each other will certainly be able to sort it all out. I was reminded of just exactly how awful black flies are; we don't get many of them here (replaced by mosquitos that could carry a stewardess), and I don't miss them one iota!

Deanne, your cold frames are wonderful! I think you ought to consider a very seasonal business selling some of them to like-minded people. Or, creating interesting containers for businesses that like some seasonal punch. You'd be a roaring success, of that I'm certain.

I've been thinking of Katie, too. Wish you'd give us an update on her, Cynthia. Rex is coming along, his fur is growing back and he is using his rebuilt leg more and more each day. It's becoming harder and harder to keep him from over doing himself.

I am envious of your completely clean house, Eden. Mine has a long way to go before it will attain that status (if ever!). And Sue echoed my sentiments on Bella perfectly, she is quickly leaving toddler behind and moving into bona fide little girldom. I like Praying Hands, very intersting plant, I'm assuming its leaves don't unfurl completely?

Rose shots are breathtaking; they really are magnificent in their glory. I've lost my Sweet Autum Clematis :( (the second one, needs more protection in it's decidedly chilly location, I think). I'll think about how to use the space while I'm cleaning out the gardens on the terrace today. And I'm releived to know that the pressure washing didn't damage your plants, Kathy. Thanks!

Meme upstairs is no relation to any of us. She sold the building and retained life tenancy in her apartment. She has one daughter who has a demanding career and (I think) takes her mother's good health and independece for granted. Their relationship is definitely strained and she is only too willing to tell her mother to "deal with it" or cede mundane responsibilites to others. I understand how it can be to have a tough relationship with your mother because your personalities can be SO different, regardless of shared DNA. At any rate, Meme seems more comfortable with us and it's no skin off our noses to help her with this. Sometimes you do things like this because they need doin' and it makes someone else's life a little bit easier. And it makes you feel good, too. :)

Kindness is the rare coin that returns the spendthrift twofold, but leaves the miser penniless.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 6:31AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Good morning... lots I could comment on this morning, but it is almost 7am and the sun is shining and just have to get outside. We had a very relaxing day in Maine yesterday and it was a pleasure to see the ocean again, at high tide no less. I brought the camera but was having such a good time I didn't take one photo. The nursery was a bit of a disappointment in some ways, but still came home with 50 little plugs. We did wave as we went by your exit Chelone...hope you got the vibes as we whizzed

I can't comment right now, but be assured that I had a lot of pleasure reading everyone's comments and trust me, all the photos were a real pleasurable addition to my evening last night. :-)

Drema...very sorry to hear of your brother's passing. No matter how expected, it seems you can never be prepared for such a loss. Hope that the happiness over the birth of Nina Maire takes some of the sting from it. Hope you will post as often as you can.

Happy Mother's Day to all, whether mother or daughter, it is nice to set aside a day to stop and remind ourselves of how much we appreciate each other.


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 7:00AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Have you seen Google today? I love their holiday logo variations. This one is gentle and sweet.

I can only echo the thoughts of others regarding the loss of your brother Drema. My mind keeps returning to you throughout the day. You are such a fine lady..and having met you and shared family, wedding and plant talk together, I can picture you each time you share your family, job or garden news here. I'm not sure your special spunk is detected by those who have not met you. You may worry as life throws you curves, but you ALWAYS make the best of things! I really admire you! Hugs to you my friend.

Chelone, I am so glad yesterday worked out well with your brother. It is so nice to have a plan agreed upon by both for future progress. It sounds as though giggles were shared as well. :)

Kathy, have you ever tried a solution of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water on your hostas in spring? I know this is supposed to be effective against slugs, but I don't know anything about snails except for escargots, which are terrific with garlic butter! You would die if you saw what passes for a healthy rose in my neck of the woods. Yours are the stuff of catalogs.

I too would like to hear a Katie update.
Also wonder what time Sue's rascals started their day today.
Hmmm, Chelone was going to begin a pet thread I seem to recall....

I hope to get outdoors in the vegetable garden soon. They scared me with threats of frost last night, but I think we escaped that. nevertheless, i must remove the protective sheets from tree peonies and such.

Happy today to one and all!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 7:46AM
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Happy Smothers Day, LOL! My own personal joke - don't tell my family :)

Seriously, I woke up so happy this morning - I love days like this. So much was accomplished on the property yesterday! I will say again: I feel inspired! Jake has promised to do an archetectural style drawing of the facade's of the house if I show him what the plants I want look like :) He's actually very good with this and it seems perfect to me, to add to my graphing project.

Today my family has promised me a Mother's Day canoe ride - no paddling for me :) Did I tell you that we had our first official hatchling of the year? That's always exciting. Turtles should start laying soon. I still need a sign for the property: Terrapin Station :)

The roses just keep coming! I'm actually tempted to try each time I see them! I am partial to the climbers or single petal deals.

Chelone, sounds like you were able to make some good headway into a very tough project. A seasonal rental sounds perfect!

PM, that sounds like a wonderful day trip you had! I like a trip to Maine, too :)

Happy Mother's Day all!


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 8:06AM
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GB, Google is tender :) Just perfect! I am going to donate money towards helping victims in Burma.

I keep forgetting to tell you: The kids (both, different schools) came home saying they needed to use the computer - seems FreeRice has caught on at school! to help Sarah whip up some flapjacks so that she has some paddle power in her :)


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 8:12AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I love "Terrapin Station". Do others have names for their homes? We call ourselves Carroll Creek Farm.

mmmmmmmm. Flapjacks sound great...but first, Phoebe's walk!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 8:20AM
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The predicted crappy day here didn't arrive yesterday, and we enjoyed a sunny, bright detail garden cleanup day. Which means of course, today is bathrooms-bedclothes-dusting-etc. UCK! I do get reprieve by going to see the touring production of Jesus Christ Superstar with my sister. Our Christmas/Birthday/Mother's Day gift to ourselves :-) I love the show and am really looking forward to being "lost" for a few hours.

Drema -- Good for you to obviously be a part of those who sprung your brother loose. It seems he spent the last part of his life here just the way he wanted, and that makes him a pretty lucky guy in the end. Enjoy Nina Marie and the other littles, but cry when you need to and come here for hugs whenever you're ready.

Rich was able to wholesale his motorcycle this week and it was a THUD to let it go. As my mom said "It was your courtship chariot!!" and she was right. While riding we learned about each other's love of back roads and cool places and met some really interesting people who inevitably said "how many years have you been together?" when we had just started dating. So, the bills will be paid for the next months but the garage looks really empty. It's okay!

How exciting for all the new plants to be landing in peoples gardens! I've done literally no nursery crawling this year (actually part of the plan!!) so that what I have will be in place and THEN I'll see what I "need." I'm hopeful that the seedlings will be in the ground within a few weeks. Yipee!

The cleaning brush is calling .....


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 8:27AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good sunny morning all! What a gorgeous day we have here. Happy Mothers Day to all the Moms out there. Doug bought me a lovely bottle of red wine that is currently my favorite. Im thinking of opening it tonight and sharing with my two BG Friends. We are going to our friends home tonight for filet steaks for dinner and to see Debs sons debut on TV. He is a plumber and worked one of those houses on the Extreme Home Makeover show which will air tonight. Hurray for him for volunteering his time for such a good cause.

Yesterday Doug, DD and I went over to University of New Hampshire in Durham and took a beginning class on Adobe Photoshop. A good time was had by all and I learned a great deal. Ive been using Corel Photopaint for years but wanted to learn how to use Photoshop as its the industry standard. After the class we drove over to my DBs house in Marlborough for a cook-out. His sons In-laws are here visiting from Russia. They live in a large city outside Moscow. What an interesting evening. Again a good time was had by all.

Cindy, ROTFL, I did a double take about the mastercard being so good to you because that was the first time in history Id heard that one. I LOL when I read the rest of the sentence. Got to love clematis on sale! Too funny that you all think I need an intervention.

Bug, lovely spring photos!

Eileen, I just love the daffodil story! Thanks for sharing that. ~~ Yes the magazine Im in is the Container Garden issue. Its a special publication.

Drema, congratulations to your family on the birth of your new granddaughter. ~~~ So sorry about your DB.

Sue that Golden Spirit looks terrific in that garden.

PM hope you had a nice drive to ME yesterday. ~~ Im about to get off this computer and get outside myself. WE want to finish getting ALL the plants out of the house today. The HUGE ones are still in the basement. Ill have to take a pic of that banana for you. You will simply not believe the size that thing has grown to in the dark in the basement over the winter.

Chelone, yes the black flies are getting to the ferocious stage and Im sporting quite a few welts even though Im religious about bug spray and have Buzz-off clothing. ~~ Ive thought about doing container design professionally but have resisted the urge because I dont want gardening to become my job. I did that with the painting and now I hate to paint because its work. I want the gardening to continue to be my passion and that wont happen if I start dealing with cranky customers. LOL

Kathy, that rose is stunning!!!! I cant believe how many gorgeous roses you have and how lush and healthy they are. ~~ I sent you an email about the cameras. Let me know if you dont get it.

Ok Im waving hello to everyone, Ive got to get busy and get Dougs help getting the behemoth plants outside. Have a lovely day everyone.



A few spring pics

Brunnera variegata

I didnt do a thing to this photograph except resize it to upload. The floating look came about because the stem is as dark as the background. I thought this an intriguing image.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:20AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Good morning and Happy Mothers Day to all who qualify!

Oooh, spring shots from Marie and roses from Kathy-the pefect way to start the day.

Looks like another gorgeous day in the pipeline here. Bathroom cleaning is on my list too but it won't be happening today. All my efforts will be directed to the garden. I still have a bit more spring cleaning to do and a few plant moves. I'd also like to get all my canna tubers potted up and down next to the furnace. It looks like I lost all my big Brugmansias over the winter :(. It would be nice to get a couple of containers planted but I haven't purchased one plant yet this spring so in order to do that I would have to go hit a nursery or two and kill half the day. Last night I went to Lowe's around 6:30 figuring it would be dead and it was zoo-the garden area was anyway. I grabbed a set of grill tools and a couple of three cubic foot bags of potting soil and high tailed it out of there.

Yesterday I got alot done inside and out. Tom came over and gave me a lawnmower, gas grill and hot tub maintenance 101 class. Lately I feel like I must be stupid or something because I have no idea how any of this stuff works. Thankfully I'm a quick study. Got the back lawn mowed, exchanged an empty propane tank, hooked it up to the grill and grilled myself a steak for dinner. In addition to laundry, bed changing and garden work I got a few art prints over to the framer. I've been spending too much time at sites like lately looking for beach, cottage and ocean related prints to soothe my new environment.

Not a peep from the dogs this morning. The paper was delivered promptly at 5:17 so I got up then, fed them, let them out and then went back to bed for an hour or so. Let's see how the week goes. On weekends they get alot more daytime activity and I know that is an issue during the week.

OK, time is a wasting. Enjoy whatever activities you decide to pursue today!


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:23AM
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Sue, I got 3' Brugs from this site - $7/ea. Good experience. I got her name off of the Brug site.


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:37AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

ooooh! Deanne is playing with her new camera! Thanks!

Just received an email from DS with mother's day wishes. Here is his comment: "Attached is a photo of your new enviro-bike I will be shipping shortly"

I wonder if he'll send the hemlmet and leather jacket as well? (Maybe this will be Rich's some time in the future.)

Last night I saw my first bats of the season flying about. A sign of a warm wonderful day...with bugs starting. Yes, those nasty black flies.

A few window shots from today...

And at last, May 11th, the serviceberry from the bedroom window.!

And what do you know! Looking through last year's photos it was also blooming on May 11th!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:48AM
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And Deanne! Gorgeous shots in the garden! That new camera sure is fun for us :)


(who is now stepping away from the computer....)

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:51AM
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Happy Mother's Day to moms of two and four footed kids! I'm feeling a little glum this year. I so wish I could just be with my mom. I called her first thing this morning. Megan is working today, David is watching Bella so I can have the day to myself, gardening I wish, but it's a rainy day here today. Jenni is having over Randy's parents and grandpa for dinner. Randy's grandma passed away last weekend so I suggested she have them over as it will be a hard day for their family. I got $$$ for plants as my gift. Jen and I spent most of the day yesterday hitting farmer's markets and nurseries. Lots of fun!

Drema, so so sorry to hear about your brother's passing. You were a great sister to him, helping him to do the things he wanted to make him happy. Congratulations on your new grandbaby! Yes we will need pictures. What a lovely name she has!

Chelone, I keep meaning to mention how great I think it is that your helping your upstairs neighbor. It must be hard going through all of your mom's things but I'm sure it brings back lots of good memories too.

Lots more I wanted to say but can't for the life of me remember what it was now. I need to do a little tidying up before Brad gets home.

Until later, Eden

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 11:40AM
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I'm in for a wee-wee break and a regreasing with sun screen. I'll assume the motherly tone and ask, "Are we all wearing sunscreen when we're outdoors?". cluck-cluck.

Great shots from Deanne and 'bug. Saucy is right, Deanne, we're going to enjoy your new toy a good deal, lol. And something tells me it will take considerably more than a new camera to attain your level of ability behind the lens. I love the tulip shot, very cool!

Naturally, I've thought of Mum a great deal lately. Strangely, though, I don't really miss her. Probably because so much of the woman I "miss" had been gone for some time before her death. Her clothing is especially poignant for me because she loved to dress nicely and appreciated the time and thought I put into the things I bought for her . I know I really pushed her in new color directions (like bright, "acid" green!) and worked hard to make sure her hair and nails were always well groomed. Her favorite "outfit" was a pair of Lands End stetch corouroy slacks in that wacky green and a cotton pullover with blue, yellow, wacky green stripes. She loved that I purchased socks to match her slacks, too. So the clothes are "hard". Any sadness I feel is more tied to the fact that she wasn't able to die in my home and had to endure that nursing hole. But I can't change that.

I understand the glum feelings, Eden. And well understand the poignancy today carries for you. I'm sorry you must endure it but am glad that you have so many diversions to bring you smiles and joy, too. I thought of you this morning as I carefully cleaned around the tree peony and contemplated a new home for it. Do you move them in August/early September, too?

Wonder how much energy Sarah's flapjacks provided? I have a vision of Saucy in the prow of the canoe, loungeing like Cleopatra on her barge... :)

Good news from Sue with respect to the mini-pack. Stick to your guns on the "silent treatment". The most effective way to discipline a dog is to IGNORE them. Or beat them to within an inch of their lives... . Let your mood be your guide. Hey Sue? are we going to see in guest spots on "This Old House" or "Hometime" in the not-too-distant future? Do you own a cordless screwdriver/drill and TWO battery chargers? ;)

OK, time to put the Huge One on his 6' string and get back to work. Waving...

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 12:29PM
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A pleasant afternoon it is here in Norcal, not too warm, gentle breeze, sunny..Perfect for puttering ! Im on beer break. Many scapes have been observed today on the daylilies as I was cutting off snail damaged foliage.I have one S. Black and Blue that has reached 2 ft by 2 ft, the other I feared was lost over the winter. On closer inspection I saw that there was basal growth which is being chomped on by the shelled-devils as fast as it comes out. I applied a generous dollop of Sluggo and a small sprinkle of Corrys Slug and Snail death.
Watering is on the agenda today as well as laundry.
I potted up a couple of coleus (purchased I must admit-) and a Plectranthus. I also took some pics this morning to demonstrate that I actually do grow other plants besides roses !
I wonder how Denise is enjoying her journey ?

Ok, break over , move the water, switch the laundry

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 6:32PM
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My idle wish to move to the Pacfic Northwest has been granted by the weather-gods. Nothing but rain for the last week. It's lovely and makes things greener and greener but this always happens when Alliums and Peonies and Poppies are about to pop. Nothing looks worse than those three fractured and soggy with rain. On the plus side, I've been planting and moving things between the cloudbursts and no need to water in. Just careful where I walk and what I plant. The liriope divisions, 58, are in and it's such a peaceful look back there that I want more. It's heavy shade, mix of trees and weeds and shrubs and now it's actually starting to look more like a destination than the 'cliff' at the end of the gardens. Oh it's not that steep, but it's a dark place made more useless by the slope of it. I'm liking the change :)

Yesterday, I picked a tiny dog up from the truck just to keep overnigt until her foster could take her. It was fun, she made Dannie (who's very tall) look like a race horse. Katie needs too much right now for me to do fostering. Or maybe I need Katie too much :) Don't want to share my time.

Went to Marketfest at the arboretum in the afternoon and stocked up on more of my favorite daffs. They dig all the bulbs in spring and sell for cheap at this event and at an herb festival later in the month. It's a deal. Checked their shrub section, but no Cotinus Golden Spirit srublets hiding there. Thanks for the picture of yours Sue and the Melianthus. Thinking about this I just did some more googling and found these at Karutz in CA. They checked out on GardenWatch so I just ordered :

Melianthus major
Plectranthus oertendahlii Lime Light
Duranta erecta Snow Flurry
Costus arabicus Variegatus

Reasonable prices and reasonable shipping. Check out the Snow Flurry Duranta, it's gorgeous.

I have two yellow Duranta that hit 6 feet and light up the patio in summer. I cut them to a foot and stick them in GH for winter. This spring they were looking rangey so I chopped them down completely and have worried for two weeks that they were now dead. But! The rains have brought forth new growth.

Here's one of the yellow ones in June 07. It's between the Eucomis and the Canna. It might be early July, I do get sloppy about creating new folders by month .... :)

Well, it's all about me today. But I do remember enough of my ready to say my thoughts are with you Drema. I'm glad that your brother was able to do things he wanted to do. You are a terrific sister. Congrats on the Nina, I'm sure she's a joy to you.

Best to all! The pictures are fabulous! (Bella you are beautiful, but I'm sure your gramma tells you that.)


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 7:17PM
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My former next door neighbor stopped by and told me she had pulled up a plant from a friend's garden thinking it was a weed. She wanted to replace it and said the friend had told her it was crocus amelia devil's tongue and had a red flower. I figured it was crocosmia lucifer.


    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:48PM
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If anyone in New England wants a Cotinus GS, go to Avant Gardens. $14.95. I just ordered two, and don't care if they're 3" high, I love to watch things grow. Of course the minimum order was $30 and that left me 10 cents short. An hour later I threw in a Schizophragma 'Moonlight' to round things out. Have dawdled over that one for the past few years.

Good night! Cynthia

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:55PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

What great weather we had today! It was spring like and not hot, but the sun was out all day. Family dinner. Just lovely.

Something wonderful out every window, G'bug. Love the lace curtain. That Hosta shot had me looking at mine coming up today.

That tulip photo really showing your camera's capability Deanne, not to mention your creativity.

Whose front door is that Sue? Glad the dogs gave you some rest and hope it continues. Are you back to walking yet?

Sorry about the snails Kathy, hope you have them on the run. Your Red Rose is scrumptious! West Coast coastline has wonderful views too...I'll post some of those next week. No tomatoes in PNW? Don't think I could survive there

Glad your day with DB worked out so well, Chelone. The settee sounds lovely.

We didn't see any lighthouses on our short trip, but it had been so long since I stood by the ocean and just the powerful sound of the waves was so much louder than I remembered. What I really want is a hot day at the beach and an inner tube, [g] then about a week to just get used to the ocean out the window and in the air every time you take a breath.

Sorry about the missing motorcycle, Marty. We have some of those regrets too. :-)

Did you canoe today Saucy?

Waving to Eden and Cynthia...and hopefully everyone was busy having an enjoyable day.

Last Mother's Day pic...

Lynxes are known for the black tufts of fur on the tips of their ears and their thick fur.
Photograph by Norbert Rosing

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 10:15PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

Happy Mother's Day to all the Idyll Mothers...

(including those with furry babies! :-)

I had a special message I wanted to give to you all...but I ran out of time and now I have to get to's been a long day.

Just wanted to tell Drema how sorry I was to hear about the loss of your brother. From spending those few days with you at the Idyllunion, I could tell you are a warm, genuine and joyful person Drema...sounds like your brother was too. I'm glad for you and your whole family that things worked out the way they did and that your brother's last days were spent spending time with the people he loved and doing the things that made him happy.

And congratulations on grandbaby Nina Marie! Look forward to pics! :-)

Wow...such beautiful pics from everyone!

Kathy...thanks....your W.S.2000 is gorgeous! I'd be embarrassed to show you mine...LOL!

Sue...thanks for stirring up happy memories! It was so fun meeting and having you all here...I loved having you...even if my personal life was a little crazy at the guys were a *wonderful* distraction! :-) Paul enjoyed all of you too! Thanks too for the G.S. pic....Your G.S. is so pretty and what a great combination of color and your fountain too!

Deanne....gorgeous pics! I agree that tulip pic is intriguing (and *beautiful) can I get you here to photog my tulips? LOL!

Beautiful pics Bug! I especially love the shots from the window and the one with the kitty is just *so* mesmerizing and soothing too!

Cynthia...that Duranta *is* gorgeous! I'm going to have to look for that. I still remember all your beautiful pics of your garden and grassy paths that I so admired. And I've always loved the pics of your black wicker and your agaves too. Which reminded me, when I bought the wrong mag issue looking for Deanne and I saw the front cover it kind of reminded me of your lovely vignette, which I think they should consider for their next cover! :-) Well, there are so many first rate gardeners in this group that I think any one of you could be/should be featured on the cover of a garden magazine!

Well, I need to get to bed a busy day tomorrow. I have to meet up with an ex-boss. She is the owner of a garden design company I worked for many years ago and says she has "she has a good offer for me that she thinks I would be pleased about and to call her." She called me the first time a few weeks ago, but I didn't call her back. But, since she called again, I figured she must be serious and it can't hurt to see what she is offering. Looking for a job (at least for me) has been very disheartening, so I have to admit, it feels good to think someone wants me...LOL!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 12:24AM
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I like that Duranta, Cynthia. Very arresting, I like varigated foliage. Your Liriope sounds like just the ticket for a shady slope, nice to see another corner of your yard become a "destination" (like that). I was hoping for more information on Katie, though. :( We'll take what we can get though.

Yesterday was just beautiful here. I cleaned out the terrace beds and am going to tackle the fern bed and the round bed today. Helpmeet made noises about slaying the latest crop of dandilions today and then we're going to stake the new course of the driveway and decide where the excess gravel and fill that will be removed will be stockpiled. I'll be glad to have the major garden areas cleaned up enough so I may "check the ingredients".

I had a good opportunity to look at the house yesterday. And I'm going to request the painters focus their attention on on the east and south facades first of all. I want them away from the gardens as soon as possible and I want to be able to get the awnings up, too, before it gets really warm. I have yet to broach the delicate subject of replacing the windowboxes with the helpmeet, I fully expect a good deal of whining about that. :/

The shrubs we moved last week appear to be holding their own. We've been very good about keeping them well watered (morning and evening) and have seen no signs of flagging yet. I am more concerned about the leggier of the two Vaccinium, but I think the Lilac is going to be just fine. And it looks nice at the end of the driveway, a place where its chronically mildewy foliage won't be quite so noticeable.

I think it's time to sort some laundry and get dressed.Then see about some sort of breakfast food stuff...

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 6:39AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

A rainy day...even several my future. I'm sorry because I need to catch up on so much weeding. Cleaning up after the spring flooding and mowing too digs into gaHden time. And so my day will be busy with phone calls about puppy classes, house and barn insurance (my nightmare) and probably cleaning the fridge...Yuck!

Cynthia, your garden already looks like an August scene to me! Lovely!

Anyone else grow Huechera Midnight Rose? I'd like to know your experience with it.

Here is the walk Phoebe and I take to the mailbox. This year alfalfa grows on the left, barley on the right. I mow the strip by the ten silver maples and it takes me over an hour to do so.

Later gators!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 7:19AM
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Where is everyone? hung over from Mother's Day, or what?

I've done some cleaning out back but it's really windy here (and none to warm! wind is off the water today) and taming the gangs of oak leaves is not easy. So instead, the Helpmeet and I have reconfigured the path of the driveway and are now working on the curves for the access paths that will ring the bahn. There's a lot to this, you guys. This is a good reminder that handsome landscaping should address practical needs first and foremost.

Gotta get to the bank right now, back atcha later.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 11:18AM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

I'm at work, pretending to be interested. I'm really surfing for tickets to IU. ;)

Where are the closest airports to Deanne? I hope she really meant the invitaion because I'm jumping on it.
If nothing else I'll sleep in the gardens. Wouldn't that be wonderful?


P.S I have the airport information at home but I don't remember it! :(

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 11:27AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Go Jerri GO! You'll have a fabu fabu time!!!

I took photos this morning...Enjoy them here:

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 1:07PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Sorry, I meant to do it this way.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 1:11PM
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I think the closest one to Deanne is in Manchester, NH. There is also Pease International Tradeport (Newington, NH) but I'm not sure who flies in there now; I think one of the airlines that folded used to and I don't know if any other carrier has picked up the slack. And there's the biggie, Logan in Boston. Hope that helps you out enough to get you started.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 1:33PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Thank you Chelone. :)


    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 1:52PM
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