Idyll #380: Patio & Deck Time!

gardenbug(Canada zone 5)May 19, 2008

Today we celebrate by cooking on the grill, right? Soon we should be able to leave plants outdoors without danger of frost. I hope. So this is the thread to show off your conatainers, patio, new plants, beehives and other amazing wonders.

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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Well I just showed off my poor spelling skills.

The scene of the Turkish rug dealers and THE RUG, a fine scene indeed!

So while we wait for Sue and Monique's new treats and Saucy's newly assembled hives, here is a bit of what it looks like here in our gardens:
The first windblown clematis~


Dictamnus about to bloom~

Erythronium by the patio~

Gillenia is a wonderful plant to watch emerge!

Hosta time!


Shade trio~

Sedum Bertram Anderson~

Apple tree~

And just to see if I can get a rise out of Chelone, here's another wonder. Reed eating yogourt...with gusto!

I need to finish a book for tomorrow's Book Club gathering. It is bitter cold and rainy, so a good read sounds just fine.

Hi to all, especially PM and her poor tooth!

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 9:16AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Just a quick post, mainly to request assistance from Deanne....

Deanne, you have a Japanese wisteria, right...? Can you please post a picture of what the buds look like that will be flowers? I'm more familiar with the Chinese one and can recognize early which are flower buds and which are leaves. I planted a Japanese one last summer and the big, fat buds that on a Chinese one would turn out to be flowerbuds have turned out to be leaf buds on the Japanese one! I looked on the internet but can't find any pictures of what the flowerbuds look like in their early stages. Can you please post a picture of early-stage flower buds on yours - or have they got to the really obvious stage down your (warmer) way? I need to learn to recognize them early. It will probably take a few years for mine to bloom undoubtedly but I want to know what to look for! Barring a nasty May frost, the Chinese wisteria tree is all set to put on a big show here! Two weeks ago I thought the flowerbuds were frost killed but they are growing gang-busters at the moment!

Remember the yellow tulip picture I posted the other week? The Ivory Floradale tulips (the big yellow ones in that picture) do deserve the 'Ivory' in their name - this is what they look like now...

(By the way, looking at my records again, I'm not sure if the little yellow ones are Turkestanica or Dasystemon Tarda. I have planted both of them in the past in roughly the same area - I no longer know which is which! I suspect they have mingled together and are not sufficiently different that I can figure out what I actually have!)

Cute Reed picture gb... (The rest aren't bad either :- )

Denise - I enjoyed your travel tales. Nice rug....

Saucy - how exactly do bees get shipped?! I'd imagine the driver for the courier or mail service might get a little nervous about a buzzing package (whether or not he knew what it contained!)

Nasty cold, damp and windy here. We did get two of the 4 holes dug for the posts for the rose swag but the rest will have to wait until next weekend or later. Digging in our rocky, clay soil with a manual post-hole auger is hard work forpoor Randy...

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 4:02PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Dealing w/ sporadic 'net service w/the work going on; i suspect Im going to forget half of what I wanted to comment on --

Mary, what wonderful borders -I dont think I've ever seen them - they're glorious and it's early season yet. I hope you will grant us more full blown shots this year - often I think you do close-ups; I just love the whole look!!

Denise -- what a gorgeous rug - I think that's the one you got snookered into to, yea? It's really unusual and lovely and will be a wonderful memento of a once in a lifetime trip.... I think the memory of the prices fades in our memories, leaving only the fun time you had "bargaining" for it -- I was always so bad in that dept-- and found it tiring - i guess the ugly American in me; I've been to Corfu and mainland Greece -- they're both sooo different; I really want to see their islands - before I die... I think Delphi was the place that stuck in my mind the most; but Corfu was another time and it was a wonderful place to relax... I know I dont have anything of value to remember those trips -- your rug is just perfect.

Sorry, PM, you're dealing w/ root canal - ugh; hope it goes well. I did get a shot of the Zeph for you and will try to post - assuming service stays up.

Sue - yikes on the outing -- what nuisance; but luckily it happened among good company. I know my SIL who lives in So. Vt has terrible cell service; she resisted getting for years beceuse they're all bad...

Saucy - so glad you had a fun, relaxing time. Cant wait to hear more about the bees.

Well, my tarte d'Alsace (compliments of Trader Joe's) is ready and Im going to indulge. Oddly, I havent gone much gardening -- w/ the service folks using the back garden it's hard to really plant anything as that's where the plant ghetto is -- I will remind myself of the bargains there, Cynthia -- if they have to wait til next year's planting, LOL. Hoping once they're gone mid-week, I'll be able to get all the garden therapy I want and need.


    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 6:09PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

For PM2, here's the Zeph. Rose:

in the Crepe Myrtle, that was such a lovely surprise:

Here's a really pretty short Clematis, a relative of Arabella called Juuli:

Here's Wm. Baffin really starting to take off w/ the other roses, the clematis mixing in should be in full bloom in about a week:

And a longer shot of the inner backyard with the Juuli Clem, baptisia, roses and dutch iris:

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 7:42PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Oh Cindy...I'd want to stay home too and just live in your garden. I also have Juuli and love her. What is the white in photo #4? Is that a young fringe tree? Lovely lovely roses!

Woody, I have a few of those dark dark tulips too. They mix nicely with lots of different things! Hope Randy's digging muscles survived the holiday...

Back to my book...which I'm not entirely thrilled with. (The Old Pategonian Express by Paul Theroux)


    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 8:00PM
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Wow 'bug, for a minute there I thought Reed was shaving already !!!

K in Napa

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 8:31PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

A happy story for the new idyll. Last night, around 11:00 pm, my mother's day present arrived - a bottlebrush buckeye! DH and DD had been on the hunt with little luck, and then they enlisted the help of a friend who lives downstate. She finally found one in the town where DD goes to school, and DD went down there for the weekend and picked it up. It's a beautiful specimen, very healthy, and it didn't cost an arm and a leg. I keep smiling every time I look at it.

Since it already was dark when I read the request for photos of containers, I will have to wait until tomorrow to take a photo of the hanging basket I planted this weekend. Maybe I'll sneak in a photo of the BBB as well!

Sue, what an adventure! Glad you guys made the best of it anyway.

Interesting day at work. Our human resources person walked off the job with no notice. We'd have the human resources department deal with that, but they no longer work there. Oh well, it's probably for the best.

Mary, I saw the photo of Annie playing violin - awesome!

I'm running out of steam, so it's time to say good night.


    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 9:40PM
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A chilly but stunning morning. My contribution to containers and wonders for today:

Not too exciting, yet, but these will adorn the deck. Both from seed (I just love that, can you tell?!? :-) fragrant lilac wave petunias and Blutonia bacopa in the smaller pots

Paeonia suffruticosa 'Yagumo', roughly translated to "Fragrant Cloud". It really is!!

So where's the car now, Sue? Is a return trip necessary? (Shucks!)...I know exactly where you were and this is just another take on "You can't get there from here." Glad your safe and sound, AND got to enjoy the nursery.

Hooray, V!! Can't wait for pics of your newest baby. Sounds like you're better off without your HR person. Let the party begin :-)

Cindy: Wow. Just, wow.

I'm now convinced that where cameras are involved, Reed doesn't stop smiling. I see him as a master fingerpainter before long.

Looking forward to more pics and garden tales. The weather has been really strange, but it looks like starting this weekend it'll be okay to set out some tender veggies and really get things rolling in the raised bed.

Which brings me to a dilemma -- has anyone seen Lemon Grass out this season? Usually by now it's there to buy though protected. Hmmmmmmm, the Asian cooking craze around here may have gobbled up the retail supply?

Off to the shore today. Hope all is good for everyone!


    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 7:02AM
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flowerluvr(Z5 IN)

Just a quick good morning. We're beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, farming-wise. It's been a wet spring and everyone is more than ready to see the end of planting...I think we've all had something stuck in the mud this spring :(
Oh, my GOSH, Reed is getting so big!! Adorable pic, 'bug!
Gotta go drive and turn, drive and turn....

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 7:22AM
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Good Morning!

What beautiful garden shots - and I thought Reed was getting ready to shave, too :) Woody has made me write in my garden notes to try adding tulips for next year :) I like "magic" tulips :) It's so fun to peek into each other's gardens, I think.

Woody, I added a youtube video on adding a box of bees to your hive. They're shipped in the little wooden crate that you see. I've heard that the post office gives you a call when they arrive in your area, and you go pick them up. I also heard that bees that want to be in the box, but aren't, will ride the whole way (usually from the South) clinging to the outside of the box :) They mean no harm, though, only there to serve their queen.

My bees might be here today. My camera is ready :) I will receive what is referred to as a "nuc" which I assume is short for nucleus, but that's just me'll be a queen, some workers, and some brood already on a frame :)

I've gotta catch this bus and then I'm off for personal training, or my regular beating, as I like to call it :)


Here is a link that might be useful: Installing your bees

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 7:36AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning all and what a terrific bunch of photos there is to enjoy today!

Bug, brilliant pics of the farm. I'd love to see a barn shot from the bridge to see what it looks like this time of the year.

Cindy, your gardens are so lovely and romantic. Love that 'Julie'. I'll have to look for her. I think our tastes run in parallel lines. We have some of the same pieces. I recognize that obelisk in the last photograph.

Denise that rug is divine!!!!! I think I'd have been drooling in that rug store.

Martie, I've not seen lemon grass around but will keep my eyes pealed for it in my travels.

Sue, Monique and Les, GOOD GRIEF! Boy am I glad I wasn't waiting on a street corner in Burlington, VT for you to show up. LOL Glad at least you got to the nursery. Do tell what you bought please?

PM, ouch! So sorry about the teeth problems. Hope all has been taken care of and you are on the mend.

OK must run, I'm off to Lake St. with my friend Mary, who I keep encouraging to post here as she is a kindred spirit and we are supposed to meet up with Wendy as well. Have a great day.

Also, guess what the 16th was? Our very own Just T's BDay so without further ado....

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 7:50AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Happy Belated Birthday, T.!!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 8:02AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Saucy - I'll have to get Randy to provide translation on the video but I got the general drift just from watching it... Holy Moly - you're a braver woman than me to be looking forward to playing with bees like that! I'm not of sufficiently calm a temperment to not freak out with that many bees flying - and crawling - around me!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 8:37AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 9:05AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Woody, I've had this Japanese Wisteria for twenty years or so and I still have no idea which buds are the flowers until they start swelling. The ones that don't swell are the leaves. Sorry I'm no help but no matter how many things I've read about it I still can't tell the flower buds from the leaf buds when it's dormant.


    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 9:53AM
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Happy Birthday T

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 11:33AM
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Right now we are cooking on the mini grill that we use for camping. DH is going to take apart the big grill to see what it needs to work again. We love grilling.

Saucy, I think it will be fun to learn about the beekeeping process through you. Id be too much of a chicken IÂm sure.

PM, sorry about the root canal. Fortunately I havenÂt had any major work done in my mouth and I hope it stays that way.

Reed shaving, LOL!

Cindy, your garden is so inviting. I love how effectively you have used the space with climbers. Its nice to see Wm. Baffin, I just replaced the roses on my arbor with those.

Back later with my container creation.


    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 12:21PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

T, we have a pink and lavender theme going here! :)

Just returned from mailing plants to DD. They're doing over their front yard and asked for sedum, echinacea and anything else. They're getting Lady's Mantle, hellebores, columbine, geraniums, pulmonaria and other stuff. They did an amazing job with forming a circle around existing plants and laying a path through it. All done with cardboard and newspaper and then straw on top of it. The topsoil was to be delivered yesterday.
Here's their assistant:

In the back yard they are planning to use an old canoe as a planter on their deck! It will be their sunny vegetable garden. All the stones on top of the raised pond (from the previous owner) were used for the front yard path. They've removed an Amur maple, a sumac and other weed trees. These were replaced with an Autumn Brilliance Serviceberry and a Cornus Ivory Halo.

I'm so pleased they both love the process!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 12:37PM
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Hello and thank you Deanne, Cindy, 'bug and Michelle for the birthday cards and wishes. It was a very quiet day with no family celebration as there were other commitments. I kept saying it was okay, but of course at the end of the day I was thinking "what the heck! This sure didn't seem like a birthday..." I did get up the next morning only to find that -- yep, I look a year older even without getting to celebrate. ;o)

I am loving seeng and hearing about how fast spring is showing up at everyone's homes. I'm sorry that I've fallen so far behind in commenting that there is no way for me to catch back up. I miss conversing with everyone, but it always seems too daunting to try to jump back in on a regular basis.

Again, thanks for the birthday wishes.


    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 9:44PM
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Happy Birthday T !!

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 9:51PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)



    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 10:29PM
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So far this is all I've accomplished in the container dept. Tomorrow I think I will get all the plants outside. Right now some are in the house and some in the garden shed. The forecast looks pretty decent with the nights staying around 50 or above. Tonight was spent mowing and trimming and then it was dark.

This is my first attempt at a Wee Garden. I did pick up a couple of plants with miniature features that I need to add. I think its one of those things you can keep adding to. This is an old drawer that came from a bar that was being torn down nearly 20 years ago. I wonder who RD was.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 12:03AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Hello again... :-)

Too early for containers for me yet. Something colorful that caught my eye instead. Also wish T a Happy Birthday. I find myself wondering who is the keeper of the birthdays. [g]

Wondering again, what has happened to Chelone? Starting to think maybe she is sick or something?

Looks like a nice day shaping up out there. Enjoy your Wednesday! :-)

Two pink anemonefish peek from the safety of their anemone home on a reef off Micronesia's Kosrae Island. The island's remoteness and a concerted effort by locals to preserve marine wildlife there endows Kosrae with some of the most pristine reefs on Earth.

(Photo shot on assignment for, but not published in, "Mangroves: Forests of the Tide," February 2007, National Geographic magazine)

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 6:30AM
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Happy Birthday, T! Around here you get a week of "birthday" so glean your celebration with us.

RD = Really drunk???????

Love the wee garden, Michelle. I want to go down that path and SiLAT for a bit on the bench.

Not much new here. Waiting for the weather to break past 65 and no wind. Even the tobacco farmers don't know quite what to do, and they are predicting that the seedlings will go in a week later than usual but probably catch right back up. It seems strange at this time of year to not have a bunch of people bopping around across the street planting away.

Weather has also necessitated delay in sending plants to folks. The size they are would ensure certain death before arrival.

Keep the pics coming!


    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 7:04AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning all,

Well we are having a beautiful day here again today. Nice cool temps to keep the bugs away. The black flies have been ferocious lately and I had a bad reaction on my left arm from getting seven bites in a few square inches of arm. Euuuuuwwww. So Im really happy its cool out today/ Yesterday Wendy my friend Mary and I went over to Lake Street gardens and I had a ball plant shopping with my friends. I found this most delicious colored New Guinea Impatiens. They are this rich, deep magenta. Fabulous. I also bought a couple papyrus, a basket of water hyacinth for the pond a really nifty small cement container for my new fuchsia standards I started this winter, and some other annuals that caught my eye.

So Sue, fess up, what did you buy in VT?

Monique, do you have your car back yet.

Chelone, whats up?

Michelle, that mini garden in the drawer is absolutely to die for!!!! So darling.

T. sorry your BDay wasnt a big celebration. It should be. ~~ Dont feel you have to keep up. Just pop in and say Hi!

V. Fabu-fabu about the Buckeye!!!! What a marvelous, thoughtful thing for your family to do for you. Its not just the wonderful gift but the time, effort and love that went into it.

Bug, I cant wait to see the canoe planter. LOL

PM2 how is your tooth??? Hope you are feeling better.

No photos of the containers yet but Ive gotten about ten planted so far. Ill take a break today sometime and get a few shots.

OK Ive got to get out of here and get to the gym. Im going to finally have my hair colored and make the gray go away. Woohoo. I wish I could use a bit of Thin Color and rinse the fat away off the old bod. LOL

Have a great day everyone.


    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 7:38AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

A quick "fly by" post this morning~ taken quickly through the window before they flew away.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 9:04AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Tooth update...
I seem to have survived the Monday from hell. My tooth ended up having to be extracted and spent the whole day Monday dealing with it at two different dentist offices. Had a very quiet day yesterday and very thankful to be on the mend and resting up. Got out in the garden for an hour this morning, just avoiding bending forward still. Thanks for the good wishes. :-)

Gardenbug....Love that camassia! So pretty. I've never grown dictamnus...that is a really neat form and bud on it. I really love that Erythronium The downward bell shape is so different. That Hosta is so wavy. I like the way it grows.
Reed does look like he is getting ready to shave. lol

Woody...enjoyed your tulips. :-) Sounds like you are working on projects like we are doing here...little bit here and there. I want to be done before the heat, but probably not. What gets done, gets done. I don't envy you the post hole digging. Give me any job in the garden but digging large holes, so I don't have to find someone to do it for me. Also, think I could live without the experience of raising bees. [g] I would be thrilled if someone else in the household did it, as long as I didn't have to. :-) No likely candidates here though.

Denise...lovely rug...can't wait to see what you do with it.

Cindy, thanks for the Zeph photo...yes, that definitely looks like the one I got last year. I saw it on sale for $10. and remembering that it would grow in part shade, I dragged it home, where it sat in the pot all summer until I threw it in the ground very late in the fall. It came back this spring. Yours is so pretty!! Is that a boxwood or holly growing behind the clematis?

Sue that was some adventure you had in VT. It sounded like an episode of 'I Love Lucy' or similar. [g] I bet you all will have some laughs over that for awhile to come. Glad it all worked out in the end. Gardeners persevere! Hope we will see photos of what you brought home soon.

V...congrats on your Buckeye! Photo! Is that Spring Symphony Tiarella?

Martie...pretty Peony and wow, to bacopa and petunias from seed. You are a hard

Saucy...did bees arrive safe and sound yesterday?

Michelle, you are so lucky to have great teeth! We have a couple of people in our house too, who have rarely had a cavity. Always amazes me, since I've been getting dental work done since I was seven. Really neat mini garden. Looks like fun.

Gardenbug...So nice to see Reed outside enjoying the yard. The backyard at your DD's already looks like it is shaping up. Aren't you lucky that they are both interested in doing it. Aren't they lucky to have care packages coming in just for them! Wonderful! Canoe planter sounds very exciting. Can't wait to see pics.

Deanne....looking forward to your container photos.

Hope everyone is enjoying this gorgeous weather. :-)


    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 1:23PM
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I ran down to Lowe's tonight and found Tigers Eye Sumac just off the truck! Substantial specimens in 5 gallon pots for $34. I bought one and will probably be sorry I didn't get two or three, but I just don't have the sunny spots for everything I want. I'm sure selection will vary by store....but if you're near one, it's worth checking. Expecially if you're one who can't keep the Sambucus R.SG alive :) They also had Corylus 'Red Majestic' and it was dark! Both were from a good distributor and still had tags.

I chopped down one of my Sutherland Golds maybe 4 weeks ago at most and it's already well branched and 6 feet tall. The other remaining SG is never affected by legginess or that droopy die back. Odd.

T, Happy Birthday to you! I took pictures tonight but it was too dark and everything fuzzed. It was sunny all day, so the minute I stopped working, the rain clouds came back. Look at a picture of some of your darling grandchildren and know you don't need pictures of my blurry garden anyway :)

Cindy your garden is all beautiful pink right now! How nice that you're home to enjoy it and putter while the contractors work on giving you your house back.

GB, your pictures are so beautifully shot, that I enjoy doing spring all over again in your gardens. And looks like Reed is blooming too.

Denise, that rug is brilliant! You were smart to throw money at those nice sales people. And unless the beaming men in that photo are 5 foot nothing, it would appear you're a member of the size 10 (or 11) shoe club??

Martie, The joy you get from your gardens makes me smile. Keep those photos coming, they're easy to read and remember.

Has Saucy named her bees yet? I too look forward to learning something brand new by reading about your experience with them this summer.

PM, sounds like you'll be getting an implant soon? The extraction is the worst part, it will be fine. Hope you don't have too much discomfort while the socket is healing.

Michelle, the drawer garden is terrific and I've scrolled back several times to check the details. I wonder if Kenzie has seen it yet?

Ok, this was supposed to be a Tigers Eye alert, and turned into more. Hi to all, and Kathy is that Irish Eyes Rudbeckia? Super orange whatever kind it is!

Later -

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 7:27PM
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My bees are here! They are settling into the backyard. I still didn't know where to put them (I have second-guessed the spot 100 times!) and figured for now I will leave them so that I can see them out of my window (best to be assured no neighborhood kids get curious).

I can move them at a later time to a more permanent home I am assured :)

I did it all by myself. I felt like the Little Red Hen, and when it comes time to taste the honey, I may turn them away :)

I am beaming! I can't wait until Monday when the weather is right for checking inside the hive - this is my neighbor's hive that she sent to Maine and had it filled with bees....we will remove the frames and move them into my new hive on Monday, and then she will get her hive back. She has done me a great service and I appreciate having someone to mentor me :)

I wasn't afraid at all and didn't wear the veil or gloves because we did all of the work after dusk and waited for the weather to be just right. She has also taught me to rub my hands in the patch of mint - I need to remember to ask why!

Sorry to be all about me. No one here to appreciate the plastered smile on my face. They wouldn't "get" the Tiger's Eye Sumac score, either, I'm afraid :)

To top it off there is a Robin nesting in the crotch of my crabapple and she has three blue eggs just at my eye level. Maybe pictures are in order....


    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 8:32PM
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Happy Birthday T. I should remember yours since it is the same day as my sons. But then I called him the day before his because I thought that day was the 16th LOL.
I am pretty much brain dead at this point. To much stuff going on and trying to get things done around here.

Bug the birdfeeder shot is so neat the way it is framed by the branches and buds. I smile at Reeds yogurt picture.

Cynthia, Katies blue jean outfit is way cool. Nice score on the tiger eye. Mine died out the first winter I had it. Then it shot up four new starts around the dead plant. They didn't do much last year with the drought but this year they are growing nicely and make a cute little grove.

I was trying to get some more pictures up because I had a lot of iris and wild phlox etc blooming this past week, but my dial up has been so slow lately I din't have the patience. Seems my patience is wearing a little thin lately anyway.

Michelle maybe RD means right drawer? Cute wee garden. I bet Kenzie will like that.

Denise, I enjoyed hearing about your trip, and the rug is pretty.

Pm , ouch on the tooth problems.

V, how great that you got your Bottlebrush. I will need to see that. How are the diablo's that you planted last year doing? I planted a "Coppertina" last year and I think I am going to like it better than Diablo or Summerwine. The new foliage on it just glows.

I'm just going to wave at everyone else because I am tired tonite. Except I have to tell Cindy how nice her garden shots are and I hope you are getting the things done you want to this week.
Later people. Norma

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 8:45PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Cindy, when you have a moment, tell me what a tarte d'Alsace is please! To me it is a quiche!

Saucy, you sound so happy! Good about your mentor. I'd like to know about the mint too! We had a pretty robin's nest as well, but they seem to be the source of tragic tales around here.

I want to hear about Kenzie's thoughts about the drawer garden. I would think she'd like to make a mini garden as well with Nana! It is fun to ponder RD..probably Robert Davis...but it could be Reginald Dupuis or a million other possibilities. Maybe his girlfriend wrote his initials there? Or maybe John wrote Rebecca Deloraine's initials? We'll never know and that is quite fun in itself.

Hoping for Buckeye photos soon....

My Tiger Eye Sumac is doing just fine, not huge, but alive. It is not spreading at all. It is so cold here that the leaf buds have not begun to open yet. We are supposed to have sunny days on the weekend...and I hope that means I can accomplish something outdoors then. The weeds are winning the war and I had so hoped to get a head start on things. Le sigh. I need to look up Corylus 'Red Majestic'. I had three Corylus die on me several years ago...That was NOT supposed to happen.

Waving back to Norma,

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 10:06PM
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The heat here ended rather abruptly and we are back to the early summer pattern of marine layer in the AM, burning off mid-morning, breezy afternoons. Im counting down to a 4-day Memorial Day weekend starting Friday during which I have no planes to catch, no dentist appointments and can try to just kick back for a change. I brought home a bunch of Angelonia today from the nursery-It does really well for me both in pots and in the ground.

PM, I am totally simpatico with anything dental in nature ! I hope you are on the mend and off the applesauce and scrambled eggs post haste.

Cindy, your garden is looking splendid ! It has that lush sort of southern vibe to me. Ive always coveted a Zephrine, but no room at the present.

Michelle-how cute the wee garden is ! I love the little hedge pruners. We are luckey we can grill year round here, I have a protected area where I can BBQ in rain if I wish. Im going to marinate a pork tenderloin this weekend .

Martie, its been so cool to se the flurry of garden pics you have been sharing with us. Its great to observe a gardener who is completely not into instant gratification.. I admit I have moments when IG is what I need-I bought mucho 4" pots today.

Yay ! Saucy is a bee-mom!

And Hi to Norma

I need to be off to do some paperwork that I brought home I rarely do that but the piles on my desk were getting to a point where I had no clue what was in them, so I stuffed them all in my brief case and Im going to sort them so maybe I can prioritize on the morrow- my Friday

So hello to everyone, and I look forward to being a heavy poster over the weekend !

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 10:09PM
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GOod evening

First - a very Happy Belated Birthday to our own T! An even further belated card will follow.

Tomorrow I am hosting our book group. As at it comes near the end of a busy week with something on every night I'm scrambling. After Annie's chorus concert this evening I whipped up a batch of cheesecake brownies and Island Macaroons which I've just put in the oven. Homemade Hummous is chilling in the fridge, veggies are chopped and my favorite "Mary's Gone Crackers" are ready to open. To compensate for not having time to clean I bought lots of wine and fresh flowers. Do you think they'll do the trick? I'm setting a timer to get things out of the oven (just in case I fall asleep) and will get up early to remove the worse of the strewn socks etc.

I'm trying to ignore the fact that while they are old and dear friends, every other member of our group has a house cleaner, (and therefore a cleaner house than me). As my boss at work put it when I was describing the situation - I need to be like her and get more friends who are slobs. Actually I have those too, but just not in bookclub. Am I the only messy reader? Our book, Digging to America by Anne Tyler was a good read and it should be a fun discussion. Once I have wine in hand I know I'll have a great evening and will have trouble figuring out why I was worried. Perhaps I need that wine now.

Saucy - congratulations on the bees! Very exciting indeed.

A big wave to everyone else - I'll catch up after tomorrow.


    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 11:13PM
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Happy Birthday T!

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 7:06AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Digging to America by Anne Tyler was an interesting read Mary, but I felt the discussion at our book club was weak. We never discussed the real topics, just individual characters and how people felt about them.

Gray and gloomy here, but I must go start the day. I wish it would warm up and dry outdoor work could be dealt with! I'm worried that the apple blossoms will be washed away before BEES can pollinate them.


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 7:23AM
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I've already been out to the hive 3 times....what time do you suppose bees wake up? LOL, it's kind of cool and wet this morning, so I imagine that's why the subdued activity. I hope they are not all dead....such a worry wart.

I heard I got the last order of bees!

Happy Birthday to little t. as Chelone has dubbed her!

Thank you Deanne for wonderful plant material to work with!

Here is my Robin sitting on her little blue eggs - I checked - no cowbird eggs :) The pictures I took of the eggs did not come out!

Funny, GB, my crabapple is covered with blight and does not frame my bird in heart shaped branches the way that yours does :)

Kathy, enjoy your long weekend! Waving to Norma! Mary, some of my friends even help me clean :)

I'm off the computer for the day now! We're having someone come in and professionally put our office network "together" since I can't seem to work out the bugs, and they all seem to be on my husband's pc...snicker snicker :) Seriously, I didn't mean for it to happen that way :)

Have a great day!


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 8:03AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Good morning -- the first morning with no painters -- they finished late last nite (hmmm, the carpet edges did not escape unscathed but at this point Im very philosophical about little stuff). Chloe & I are overjoyed to be able to start to reclaim the rooms -- wonder what I could do to get Chloe to tote her fair share of "stuff" back in, LOL? and I hope the reclaiming on her part will not involve "christening" the carpet (for a long while...)....

I thought of you, Sue, last nite when I attempted once again to reconnect all the tv/dvd/FIOS/connections and computer lines -- this stuff always makes me feel so stupid and ignorant.... couldnt get it to work but I gave it another try this a.m. w/ a clear head, and yea, it's on!! Perserverance.

'bug -- I too equated the tarte'alsace to a tart but I think it was Cynthia who mentioned this item from Trader Joe's once upon a time -- it's a Trader Joe product ---I'll have to describe from memory as the box is gone -- like a small thin crust pizza -- "french style flat bread" (I didnt know the French made flat bread) with ham, carmelized onions and gruyere cheese - it's really tasty - I think one can use as an appetizer.

So cool to hear the excitement about your bees, Saucy - I almost feel the same way about my basement, LOL -- it doesnt take much to excite us does it?

I've got a robin's nest in the Wm. Baffin rose but it wouldnt compare to those lovely shots of Gardenbug and Saucy.

Well, one more repair guy - handyman arriving to do some recaulking/regrouting for me - he's looking a terrific bargain at $30/hr versus the guy who quoted me $90/hr -- more stuff I should (or do) know how to do re house maintenance, but no time, energy or inclination to do -- so at this price, it's exciting to knock something else off the house repair list.

Mary -- I really understand about the friends/clean house thing - years ago I used to have palpitations about friends dropping in if my house were a mess; then I guess I did get some friends who were slobs and it made me feel almost perfect, LOL -- my SIL years ago gave me a kitchen sign that still hangs there in a prominent place -- "Dull Women have Immaculate Houses" -- my motto (and excuse).

I will have to see if I can run to Lowes today to check out Cynthia's intelligence re new stock --- Mary's container photo reminds me of the stunning things that can be done w/ that sumac....


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 9:50AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

A quick good morning all,

So where the heck is Chelone these days???? Im getting concerned. Hope all is well at the compound.

Saucy, sweet Robin pic and congrats on the bees. Lovely combination in that container!

Mary, I used to be a spotless housekeeper but the more I do in the gardens the less I do in the house. I had my hairdresser appointment yesterday, she comes here to color my hair, and I had to vacuum the house first as it was a disgrace. I need about three of me to do all the stuff that needs doing around here. LOL ~~ Great card for T! I have my planter like that in the front between the PJM Rhododendron and am deciding what to plant but I dont think Ill ever top that arrangement Inta did.

Cindy, how great to be getting your house back in order after all that work. You must be feeling relieved you finally have your space back. Its been a while.

Hi to Norma, Kathy, Denise, Woody, Martie, T, Bug, V, Cynthia (thanks for the Tiger Eye Sumac alert)PM2 and all the Idyllers out there. (Brenda, when are you popping in again?)

OK Im off to try to reduce the size of my plant ghetto,
Have a great day all

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 9:54AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I'm hoping Chelone is putting her talents to work (for the demanding boaters) and getting great satisfaction, praise and financial reward!

The tarte d'Alsace sounds delicious...and very much like an almost crustless Alsatian quiche.

Saucy, I want an update on your container planting in a few weeks!

Life is getting even busier. DH has announced that his class is coming over for dinner next week, with partners. It is a tricky business as one of the guys cannot enter the house due to severe allergies to pets. Also, he has plant and food allergies. It is a varied international crowd...and I'm not at all sure what to offer....Indian/Chinese/Bangladeshi Pizza? (joking!) We also have a meeting on gravel pit operations, puppy classes begin, French Club dinner etc. etc.

Cindy, I'm so glad you have a home at last. If "Dull Women have Immaculate Houses", I must be scintillating! (Nice idea that!)

Off to discuss life with Phoebe, now 6 months old. How did that happen so quickly?

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 10:24AM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

I forgot (as usual so many things) -- Michelle - I LOVE that wee garden and the drawer - we should find the "repurposed planter" thread and add it onto it for this season's ideas!!

I have not planted one container yet, except the early pansies and that doesnt count..... I need to reduce the size of the plant holding cells too.... maybe after today's moving things in, hopefully w/ some care to the back -- I have to leave energy and ability to do at least a couple days of gardening!!

Anyhow, I just love that drawer, Michelle -- and Saucy your container is beautiful.... it may be mono pots for me this year as I have not bought a single annual yet (but did manage to order a couple agaves from PD....)

Im imagining Eden hard at work on her pergola....
PM2 - hope your mouth is feeling better --

back to work here -- aaah, at home, no awfice!Yippee skippee (now there's a cheese phrase to make a teenage child wince extremely, Wendy).


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 10:32AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Brrrrr! Dark and gloomy here too Gardenbug and chilly here this morning. Had to drive into the city this morning to drop my daughter at work and stopped at the Lowe's on my way home. Had a winter sweater on and left my jacket in the was freezing! Thankfully I didn't see anything that caught my eye so I didn't stay long. I usually like the gray days to catch up on moving plants, but I don't even want to go out there today. It is finally supposed to be warming up starting Saturday I think. I have the car today and could head out to a nursery to pick up a few plants but it really would be so much more enjoyable on a nice day.

Well, we have one container planted. It looks quite sparse at the moment. Our first time trying a Hayrack. Already in the past few days the leaves on the coleus have looked burned and this is a part sun area, so maybe I need a different coleus that is more sun tolerant. Thanks Deanne for the name of your yellow Helichrysum. :-)

Well, sad to say, my Sambucus SGold is again not doing well. Last year it had a couple of stems that just mysteriously wilted and died on it and I just trimmed them off and ignored it. When the plant came back so healthy looking this spring, I thought it was a fluke. No sooner did it bloom, than I had two whole branches do the same thing. All the leaves on the branches just wilted and died. What is that all about? I will try to get a photo soon. I don't enjoy an unreliable plant at all. Wondering if I just might as well start planning a replacement.

Cynthia, yes, the 'implant' word has been tossed out there. I have a wait before I have to decide on that. I have been told there is a pretty high percentage of success for implants, but I often will fall into the small percentage of people who have a problem with a lot of things health related, so I have a large degree of reluctance, but I am trying to psych myself up for at least trying one. I could certainly use them.

Kathy, how are your implants doing? Are you comfortable with them in your mouth so far? Are they complete at this point, or are you healing waiting for the next step?

To all who asked, I am feeling much better and minor soreness is about it. Thanks very much. :-) Glad to have that over with. [g]

Saucy, you are too funny, heading out to check the bees three times I would do the same thing I am sure. I would think they are all settling in and keeping each other warm today. :-) Congratulations and look forward to hearing about amazing pollination this year. :-) Love that Robin photo!!

Mary, love your photo. Isn't that from the Idyll Reunion last year? I seem to remember one garden you all visited that I just loved and I think that was the one. Beautiful container!!

Yay Cindy!! So happy for you that you are finally getting back into your rooms. I used to always be the one to put the electronics together, but I have passed the torch to my daughter, who finds it fairly easy to do, which makes all our lives much

Deanne...are you holding off putting your coleus out into containers or are they out?

Can't believe Phoebe is six months old already. That can't be possible?! How did that happen? Was she two months old when you got her? Did you get her back in January?

Well, I am off to decide what to do with the rest of the day. Maybe stay in and get back on track with computer chores instead of gardening today.

Have a nice Thursday...oh....that's right, it's favorite television program is starting tonight. So You Think You Can Dance. My daughter and I love that show!


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 11:24AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Bug, you are a hoot, if you are scintillating then so am I LOL. Lately I think I need to run the house through a car wash, yes the inside too....

PM2, what you've described with your Sambucus Sutherland Gold is EXACTLY what happened to mine. Came back every year in the spring looking great with lots of healthy, large new growth that would just die off for no apparent reason over the season. Last year the whole thing just died off to the ground and even though there were a couple new growths trying to come back I just shovel pruned it. It just wasn't worth always dealing with the die off on it. I replaced it with a Cotinus 'Golden Spirit'.

I wouldn't worry about the coleus, no matter what I do this time of the year I always get a lot of leaves with sunburn and I just prune off the burned leaves and the plants eventually put out new leaves that will be hardened off to the conditions they are planted in. Most of the new coleus cultivars are very sun tolerant. Love your hayrack!

I've gotten some of the coleus planted in containers already. It's time for them to toughen up and get out in the world. LOL Some are looking a bit sad but they will perk up in a week or so if we don't get any colder temps than we've had.

OK I've got to run to HD and pick up a few supplies. Have a great afternoon all.


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 1:52PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Oh no, I'm worried about Chelone. It's probably all those slobery baby pictures! LOL

Bees and Robins, how exciting! I love spring. I've been thinking about a bat house. We are in a rural part of town so I doubt the neighbors would complain. Mainly I'm worried how I would handle it!

Ditto on the computer/video cabling. I gave it up when we got DirecTV and were able to hook the speakers, etc. up. Gives me a headache just thinking about it. ;)

Love the photos all! And a Happy BD to T.

How is Phoebe 6 months old??? It can't be possible!

Our puppies are doing well except for one. She's the baby I had to work on to get her breathing. DH and I are having to help her nurse. She get's pushed aside by all the piglet puppies who have doubled in size! Time to pick up puppy formula I think. I've named her Rose. :)
Puppy pictures are coming this weekend for sure. It's a long weekend! YEAH!

Back to work... :(


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 2:13PM
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Drive by but wanted to get this outta the head through the fingers before I forget :-)

I want Denise's rug. I also want the memory that goes with it. Haggling is custom in so many places -- why not here????

Sounds like you're being a great bee mom, Saucy. I'll only start worrying about the infatuation if you name them.

Another take on refridge magnets re: cleaning: "A Clean House is a Sign of a Misspent Life". I'll betcha that most who have cleaning people are closet slobs.

I'm jealous, 'bug, that you get to have a dinner with a bunch of int'l students. Do you really think they'll care what they eat if it's home-cooked?? LOL One of the most successful menus here was simple ole veggie lasagna. Go, figure.

My poor coleus don't know what's hit them but they're being hardened off whether they like it or not. Still haven't figured out the best way to thin the babies without ending up with just a few patterns. Next year, single variety seeds :-)

Thank you, Cynthia, for recognizing the joy with the progress. The Park has been cathartic, as most gardens are.

Great plant scores for all recent shoppers and gift receivers! As one who tries to get Rid of Sumac, the love just isn't there, but I know the plant and it is a beauty if it's well behaved.



    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 2:35PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Deanne, that is so odd that the same problem with the Sambucus. Oh well, I am sure I can find something else before next spring. I have to rearrange a few things in that bed any way.

I had been thinking maybe because they had been grown in a greenhouse the coleus leaves were acting that way. I did cut the discolored leaves off and there are some small new ones that might do fine. Thanks for the tip. :-)

Jerri...looking forward to puppy photos this weekend! :-)

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 3:31PM
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PM - My Sutherland Gold did exactly the same too. I yanked it out last year when it blackened and withered. Now my Tiger Eye Sumac is a real winner except for the fact the deer love it as much as I do. I moved it to within out pool fence to give it a fighting chance and I can wait to see it in its glory this summer.

I love the plaque ideas and might play with some fonts later to print up my own. For now I've given the public areas a once over and hasty declutter am looking forward to my evening. As you can't be here I thought I'd offer you all some dessert instead and perhaps tempt Chelone out and T back.

My skills with the mop might not be the best but I love to welcome guests with home made food. DH is taking Annie and David out to eat so I can skip straight to wine and brownies. Like Kathy I'm off now for the long weekend - life is good!


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 6:29PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Evening all, Ive been planting up a storm here and Ive gotten a dozen containers put together in the last couple days. So, because youve asked. LOL. Here are some photos of the new containers.

This abutilon is four years old now and normally I plant it in a combination container but it has such a lovely shape that I thought it could stand alone this year. Ive just planted Ajuga Black Scallop at the base of it. The Ajuga should be pretty cascading down the sides of that tall container. Thats the plan anyway!

Here is a grouping for the patio. I had to go out and buy this tall urn today because the one I used to have in that corner self-destructed over the winter. This one had some damage to the lip on one side so I got them to take $30.00 of the price of it. Ive planted the bacopa over the damage so it wont ever show. I love it when a plan comes together. LOL

A grouping on the front of the breezeway. I just love the kitty planter! It was a Christmas gift from Monique and Les. They couldnt have found a more perfect gift!

That is the same abutilon I had in this urn in the driveway garden last year only its four times the size. It should get gigantic by the end of the season this year.

Mary, that dessert looks fabu!

Martie, dont worry about the coleus. They will probably go through an ugly stage until they re-grow new leaves. Ive found that they dont really take off until they shed all the leaves they had in the house and grow new ones in the new location. I just have to be careful not to over water during the transition.

Jerri, looking forward to seeing those puppy pics.

OK Im out of here. Have a great evening all.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 9:07PM
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Rainy and chilly here today also. I used the time to go purchase a new pump that I have needed for the pond. Boy did I luck out. With my garden rewards discount plus it was senior day I saved 50 bucks on the pump and some more on plants as they had buy one get one free plus the discounts. It made them very reasonable. I need to get back there before the sale is over. Perhaps again next thurs to get the senior discount again. It was raining though so I couldn't browse all I wanted. I stopped at another place that has a nice selection and good prices. I got soaked there and called it quits. The bad part about having DH retired is not being able to slide some of those plants in unnoticed LOL.

I don't have a robins nest but we do have a pair of flycatchers here this year that we haven't had in the past. I love to watch them dive and swoop around the pond area. I really miss the barn swallows we had at the old house.

Saucy did those bees wake up today?

Jerri, I hope Rose will thrive with the formula.

Another socially busy weekend starting tommorow. I was just thinking this would wind it down for awhile and what did I get in the mail but a wedding invitation for June.

Mary your snacks look scrumptious. I bet your house is a favorite meeting place.

Have a good weekend all. Thinking of those that are silent. Norma.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 9:08PM
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Hooray, Im on holiday ! We had high winds today and my neighbors market umbrella flew right over the fence and landed on top of Buff Beauty. Broken branches ensued. Poor BB is valiantly trying to recover from being cut back to 2 feet this winter so I could extricate the obelisk from her clutches. My umbrella fell into my Bearss lime, with only minor damage. I always close my umbrella up at night in the event that wind does occur, so it fell over in a closed state. My delphiniums remarkably did not snap off .

More later

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 9:26PM
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Deanne you are off to a good start. Are most of your urns concrete or fiberglass? The new one is nice. I love the kitty planter too. N

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 9:27PM
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I'm here to shut down the computer, but thought I'd report that me and the bees had quite a full day:

I had to "feed" my bees which required me to make sugar syrup and make a drip feeder.....

...then I had to figure out how to operate the smoker

....and then I had to open the hive while the smoker sat smokeless :)

....and I didn't get "buzzed" not once!

After I fed the sugar syrup this morning, they spent the rest of the afternoon foraging, and I spent alot of time watching bees come in for a landing with a full leg's worth of pollen :)

I will check-in in the a.m. We're all home tomorrow for a PhD Grad - Nick's brother. I'm putting together a kit containing patches for the elbow of a sport coat and a pipe...any other ideas?

Someone said I should give him a "real" phd: post hole digger :)


    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 10:29PM
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This week has been a blur. I'm wondering if my job always seems so bizarre after a vacation. I wrote this post and sent it to myself as an email earlier in the week:

Cynthia, what those salesmen lack in stature they more than make up for in sales moxie ;) I'm 5-8, so they might actually be 5-foot-nothing. Good score on the sumac. Not something grown locally here but the previous idyll pix have been gorgeous. The last great find I made at the local Lowes was some Festuca 'Golden Toupee,' but rarely get even that lucky. So nice to hear V's family is tuned into what birthday present would really make her happy. It truly is better to give than receive in a family like I grew up in. Pajamas for Christmas, socks for birthdays, maybe mix up the two for variety...My mom grew up very poor so is resolutely practical in the gift department. Bothered me no end as a kid but now I find I need the practical stuff!

Warm birthday wishes, T. Bake yourself an extravagant cake, then set a lovely table with flowers and offer not even a sliver to anyone else -- there's a mean-spirited revenge fantasy for you. We missed Mitch's b'day while away so I baked a choc cake which oozed cake batter magma all over the oven, which comes from making 8-inch round pans do the job intended for 9-inch rounds. Still stuck in the Greek Islands, I rented The Trojan Women with Hepburn as Hecuba, Redgrave as Hector's wife and Irene Pappas as a stunning Helen and have been pouring over mythology. First day back at work yesterday was a marathon, one 5-min break in 5 hrs, with shoulder and neck muscles complaining this morning. Thank goodness I warmed up on the machine the night before and in the early a.m. First days back after vaca always terrify me, even after 10 yrs. The atty boasted of having run 62 miles of trails over the weekend, so his endurance set the grueling pace for the depo. Save us from type A's!

Temps have leveled off here into the 80s. Amazing how Kathy's weather and mine follow closely along, being 400 miles apart. Cindy, your garden is so elegant, such a perfect use of that space. I stuff way too much in a small space, so I recognize and appreciate restraint when I see it. I planted up a mossed basket last night with purple basil, parsley and some trailing Margarita sweet potato, which will probably suffice as the summer herb garden. Have cut way back on pots this year and may not do any (gulp) coleus pots at all. So Deanne, Eden, and Michelle, it's up to you! Can't wait to see your creations. Martie's before-and-aft photos leads me to crave more such documentation from other idyllers. I may be able to scrounge around for some photos but nothing near as dramatic since there's less space to model here.

PM, my boys have never had a cavity in their unfair how the dental work is doled out amongst us, with you and Kathy getting far more than your fair share. Glad to hear you're on the mend.

Hello to Norma, nice to see you check in. And Brenda, dashing by on a tractor!

And the photos have started to roll in, thank heavens! Mary, if you feed your book club that well, they'll never notice the state of your carpet. A young kid on the bus today was reading Jane Jacobs' The Death and Life of Great American Cities, an old fave of mine, and it's always a secret thrill to see cherished books read anew. 'bug's comments re her book club are intriguing. I've often wondered how such clubs work.

Saucy, congrats on the bees safe arrival! The silly bit from Eddie Izzard is linked to commemorate the occasion. (Warning: contains an F-bomb, so don't open if such language offends.)

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 12:07AM
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Deanne, is that a faux crack in your new container ? Like the vein-y plant display in pic 5. Amazing how many blooms you have- I am way behind you growing in my au naturale state! There are certainly no begonia or fuchsia blossoms in my garden at this point.

Saucy, a doting parent is what you are ! They wouldnt dare sting you Im sure they feel the maternal vibes.

PM, my implants are progressing very well. Right now the posts have been installed (that was the procedure I went through in April) and when the healing has completed (3 months or so Im told) I get the crowns and I am off and running . My oral surgeon is very cautious about making sure that my mouth has fully recovered from a surgery before going on to the next step.

Slobs: I am a former slob- it seemed like the more stressful my job became over the years, the more I felt like I needed an orderly pleasant environment when I came home. I dont obsess over it, but start to feel a bit unhappy if things get too messy.

So Im going to go read a bit , Thursday is usually a slow baseball night.

Nite all

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 12:08AM
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So I guess there is hope for this slob then, huh, Kathy? Nick and I had a talk about the state of the house and my new bees, LOL! I'm sure things will even out :) He's worried that I'll be too busy to help him pack up the boat for the long weekend....

I agree with Denise, Mary, who can see the carpet with the food you serve perched in their hands? I hope the discussion was lively!

Will the Buckeye have the actual "nuts" V.? People collect and sell them around TN. How nice of your family to track one down.

Deanne, those containers are gorgeous, and I wondered about the crack, too! Is it real? You chose the perfect plants (of course!) for the cat planter, as it looks as if she is bristled :) I'm waiting for mother nature to warm things up so that my plants will actually GROW.

Jerri, I can't wait to see puppy pics. That runt will be special, they always are :) My friend's Corgie was the runt and they didn't think he'd make it because of his severe overbite - wouldn't be able to eat kibble. He overcame, and it makes for the most endearing dog smile :)

I've gotta go find some food and check the bees....they're almost photo ready. I lost about a hundred in the move and I didn't want to photo the little bodies at the entrance, but they're slowly doing some housekeeping (like I should be doing...).

Have a great day.


    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 6:59AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)


Sorry for the drive is a day off for me. I have PT in 45 minutes, still have to eat breakfast and wanted to drop a urine sample from Zoe off at the vet on the way.

Be back later.


    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 7:45AM
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Thanks for the link, Denise....I spent 2 cups of coffee watching Eddie do schtick :)

My, but that is a lot of eyeliner :)


    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 7:51AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good morning all,

Well we are having another sunny day here but its supposed to get windy later. Have I mentioned that I hate the wind. Grrrr. Great score on lovely, large fuchsias at HD yesterday for $13.95 in a twelve inch hanger. If I knew I could buy the varieties I want in the spring for that price Id only winter over half of what I do. These will replace the ones I lost so I was over the moon.

Yes, Kathy and Saucy, that is a faux crack in the urn. I dont really like that feature of this piece but the fuchsia will cover it in time. $45.00 for an urn that size is a very good deal so Im not complaining.

Kathy, what a bummer about the umbrella/wind damage. I cant believe the neighbors dont put their umbrella down. Incredible that your delphiniums survived the wind. They are one plant I adore and cant grow for anything. Looking forward to seeing pics of yours. ~~ the begonias that I wintered over arent even close to blooming yet either. I normally supplement my wintered over plants with cheap hangers from Loews or HD that I take apart. Thats normally a good price for large flowering plants. Much less expensive and larger plants that flats. Our seasons are so short here that I like to really stuff things in so the containers look good from day one.

Norma, great score on the pump. LOL about sliding plants past DH! Te he. ~~ What kind of flycatchers do you have in residence? ~~ Most of the planters are fiberglass. I do have some lovely concrete ones that Ive picked up over time but the fiberglass are so much easier to deal with.

Saucy, how long do you have to feed the bees or is that a one time deal? Sounds so interesting. Looking forward to pics.

Denise, I LOVE your gardens stuffed with plants. I dont think they are overstuffed at all. ~~ No coleus pots! Bite your tongue!

Sue, I lol about your dropping off a urine sample, I didnt see Zoes name until after I re-read it and was wondering what you were having problems with now.

OK Im off to plant containers Have a great day everyone!

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 8:22AM
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Coffee with the Idylls this morning before I venture outside . Today I will have to pull up the sweetpeas-they are looking pretty sad after the heat and then the wind. I have some morning glory seeds (old reliable Heavenly Blue) to put in their place. I notice that the summer weeds , most notably spotted spurge, are beginning to put in an appearance.

Denise, I think our side of the nation is due for a mild weekend weather-wise. Perfect for manual labor , and planting tasks.

Here is my Lobelia laxiflora , in full bloom right now.

Waving hello to everyone ..

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 10:04AM
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We have many bird nests here. The blue spruces near the Secret Garden are a choice nesting area for birds. When Im working there I see the mothers come and go and hear the babies squawking. Theres also an intact robins egg lying in the garden near there. A brown thrasher is residing in the Secret Garden as well. Their song is so varied and interesting.

Interesting info about the Sutherland Gold, mine is only in its 3rd year, but I have noticed that spring is certainly when it shines. The rhus Tiger Eye is a much superior year round shrub for me. Although, the deer really munched it last winter and it is much later to wake up in the spring. Martie, so far the sumac is quite well behaved. If not it can always be used in a container.

Deanne, wind is exactly why I dont have any containers planted or the plants outside either. They all mostly reside in the garden shed. Hopefully, they will make it out soon. We are supposed to have a wet and windy weekend. Your containers look so wonderful already! I cant help but wonder where the drainage hole for the kitty planter is ;o) Wouldnt the kitty and bunny planters be cute in Kenzies garden? Im pleased that my ajuga Black Scallop made the winter. I had gotten a big pot and separated it into about 6 pieces.

Norma, my DH is an enabler. Last Sat. when I went to the nursery he told me to take the pickup so Id have enough room. I think he realizes that it keeps me busy while he farms.

Kathy, we grill year round here as well. You just have to put your coat on ;o) Nice combo with the lobelia.

Pm2, I like your hayrack planter. The latest issue of Country Gardens magazine shows one mounted on an old porch post with the effect of a large ball of plants. I would love to find an old post to try it.

bug, how very cool that your apple tree frames your bird feeder. Neat that your DD and DH are interesting in gardening.

Thanks for the comments on the wee garden, I added a few more wee plants. Ill have to show it again later. Its challenging to find tiny flowers to keep the scale. I actually scouted around the farm quite a while before I decided to use the drawer. Kenzie hasnt seen it yet, but Im thinking of eventually having an in ground fairy garden in the Secret Garden. Ill wait until she can help with it.

Michelle, who would rather be scintillating than dull ;o)

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 12:31PM
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Jerri_OKC(z7 Ok)

Little Rose had a turn for the worse yesterday. After a really rough night, I took her to be put down this morning. It was really hard. Last night was bad enough even DH was in tears. Sometime doing the right thing feels really bad.
Maybe it's karma, I went to PT this morning and instead of relief I got sciatica. I hope the rest of the long weekend is better! LOL


    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 2:02PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

I'm so sorry Jerri.
I have a friend who has been caring for a baby kitten for 4 weeks now. His Mom cares for him, but has no milk. She had 2 kittens and one starved before my friend realized what was up! This second one is very very small. She has just discovered that it is blind.... I don't know what the outcome will be. He is not very healthy.
On the good news front, a friend from Book Club has found a place that cares for abandoned cats and spays and neuters them for almost free. Since we both get pets dumped near our homes, this may be a big help. Even if they are feral, spaying & neutering is a big help!
Just returned from buying Salvia Black & Blue, bamboo stakes to support some clematis, a small obelisk for yet another clematis. Soooo much tidy up needed!
DGS's mother went to visit the nearby (excellent seeming) school with DSIL today, so at least she is now thinking about the school that is best for him and not just about herself! Next will be the decision on who gets to care for him after his heart surgery. Sigh....

Away I go!

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 4:07PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA awful for all of you. Your first experience with having puppies too. Well, I have always heard that if some of the puppies don't thrive it may be that there is some kind of defect or limitation that is not obvious that could account for their smaller size and inability to thrive. If they couldn't make it despite all your best efforts, then it just wasn't meant to be and they may have been spared future suffering. I can't see any reason to feel responsible. You did everything you could. Hope the sciatica improves so you can enjoy the weekend.

Past problems with backs in this house, ice 10 minutes on and 20 minutes off, then walking in small amounts throughout the day, did better for me by a mile, than heat and resting. You probably already know that, but you would be surprised, how many doctors are still giving the heat/rest advice.

Will have to come back later for other comments. Really looking forward to the long weekend!


    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 5:38PM
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I had to be firm with Reine des Violettes today. She was bullying the other kids on the fence. I can barely find my mature Clematis Ramona she has been engulfed by RDV and forced downward into a Spirea. I also vacuumed the Lady Banks debris out of the succulents on the patio. I wondered if vacuuming ones succulents could be considered odd behavior. I knew however that the Idylls would understand ! I also got a long overdue haircut, and did copious deadheading. I feel productive.

Yay ! Michelles potting shed has surfaced again..I always enjoy that thread. Michelle, I never seem to have bird nests here in my garden, though I have lots of bird visitors. I think that the Napa River which is right across the street might be the preferred residence for most of them.

Jeri , hugs to you ..Rose was loved and cared for in her brief time in this world. Hope all the other pups are doing well .

bug, seems encouraging that the DSILs ex is making some attempt to review school choices for Skylar. The post-surgical care though seems way too important to politicize. I guess that never stops people though..that was one great shot of the bird feeder by the way !

So where the heck is Chelone ?

Almost time for baseball..pleasant evening to all..

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 8:28PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

Well, Im plum tuckered out... that's it for the repairs/service, etc. for a week or two, LOL... you know how it just never seems to go perfectly... each one had its flaws and probs... but Chloe & I relaxed and rolled on the floor of our new family room carpet, etc.; she got to run around and do some old chase routines that have been lacking for a long, long time...

But even better, I had another jaunt this p.m. to meet Cynthia at a terrific MD nursery -- it's great to have an enabler along... they had a terrific looking Berberis Helmonds Pillar that I'd been looking for and it came home w/ me w/ Cynthia's great advice -- I love it!! I plunked it in its pot in the garden and it looks terrific - so terrific I think I should have bought 2...hmm, only a 45 min drive back.... the place was huge & we spent 2 hours there; I think I only saw about 1/3 of the place.

I got to meet Dannie too - what a love she is -- she's a social floozie too - she loves people -- and so quiet - I told Cynthia I could almost see Chloe liking her...

Wow, Deanne, you are already hard at work on the fabulous pots -- I can see your enthusiasm and thrill in each composition -- to say nothing of your talent and creative eye. I do think I'll be doing the mono pot bit this year.

Im so sorry to hear about the wind damage Kathy -- yikes - hard not to be mad at the neighbors isnt it -- I think vacuuming your succulents was quite inspired... you then said you got a haircut and for a minute I thought you might have done that by vaccuum too, LOL... it's actually been very windy here too - so odd - and downright chilly.

PM2, I meant to answer your query earlier re the boxwood - it is Ilex Sky Pencil - I've got a couple specimens but that's the best looking one - it's probably about 6 yrs old now.

Saucy - that's neat info re the bees; I had no idea about any of that.

Jerri - Im so sorry about the pups and Rose -- you are a special person to try to tough those things out -- doing the right thing is often very very hard; I hope you get to do some relaxig and SALATing this weekend to make up for it.

I am declaring tomorrow garden day -- it's unload the cartload of stuff I brought home from Thanksgiving Farms, and work outside finally - the house is gonna just stay a wreck -- a nicely painted one, but still a mess - it's taking longer to move stuff around than I had hoped - but at least I know it's on its way back to the proper place - I may be doing more chucking too; there is a certain appeal to seeing clear tops of furniture and open spaces.

Denise -- I think I can relate to the world in which you work -- yes, too many type As and total narcissists.... it's always grueling and tough after vacation to get used to the anomalies isnt it? Im trying not to think of the payback required next week upon my own awfic return.

Well, lights out for me...


    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 9:56PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Good morning from Massachusetts. :-)

Yesterday was a gorgeous day and I enjoyed every minute of it. I had the van home, so I made a spur of the moment decision to make a short trip to a local nursery that I enjoy. Very unusual for me to do. Arrived just after they opened and hardly a soul there. Sun was shining, not a cloud in the sky, air temperature was perfect with a very slight breeze. Birds were singing, bees were buzzing. Ahhhh!!! It was so peaceful there. They are set back from the street and very little traffic anyway. I had all the time I wanted to leisurely wander around with only the small fun goal of choosing a few new plants for containers. I found just what I was looking for and then some. The manager had some time for a friendly chat which was very nice, especially since this particular nursery is closing for good in July. Very sad. I have been going there for years. Sadder still because the property was sold to developers who will probably be putting up McMansions. The original Victory Garden was created on their property and although they have moved on, the garden is still there.

Luckily I had remembered my camera and took a few photos before I left. I thought I would post photos of the old Victory Garden that was looking particularly lovely yesterday morning.


Does anyone have news from Chelone, or anyway to get in touch with her? Can't imagine what would keep her away so long.

Loving all the photos.

Mary...your treats were mouth watering. I bet they were a hit! Sorry to hear you had to yank out your SGold too. Darn. Guess mine is not long for this world then. I don't think I am going to go for a sumac. I am a worrier about anything that can get out of hand. Love to see photos of yours though.

Deanne....your pot kingdom is looking particularly great this year. Love your new cat planter and the rabbit. Just my style of decorating. :-) I wondered what is growing with dark leaves in the two pots behind the cat? My favorite, although difficult to pick one, is the second from the bottom. That begonia has such gorgeous coloring. Great job!

Norma...sounds like you had a great day at the nursery the other day. Will you have photos of the pond soon?

Kathy....have you kept the weekend to yourself, so you won't have to be showing it? That was quite a wind storm you had there. Sorry about BB, but happy about your Delphs. Did you have them staked well? Are they in bloom and photo ready?

Sounds like you have had the worst of the implants over with then. I am so happy that it is working out for you. It is amazing to me that you have already gone through all you have done already. Nice timing too, because gardening season is so busy and fun, that you will hardly notice the three months going by.

Vacuuming your I did find myself smiling reading that. Very ingenious actually. What do you use, a wet vac?

Denise...I am cutting back on containers too. I had found myself adding two new pots every year and it was getting out of hand. Too much to take care of and fall clean up was getting to be something to dread. So far I have seven large pots planned and a few small ones for the front steps and that's it. Although I have more containers in the garage, they may stay there.

Your boys have never had a cavity..! That is something to really be thrilled about. They don't know what they are missing....they can spend their money on the down payment for a house or a nice wedding for what extensive dental work costs these days. Even with insurance. Not to mention the stress of having the work done. Really great!

That 'covered in bees' video was very cute. lol

Michelle....I've seen one of those hayracks on a post that are so full they do look like a huge ball of Would doing one on a Shepard's Hook do as well for you?

Gardenbug...nice news about DGS's Mom looking over the school you all would be happiest with. I feel bad for all of them. Sounds like everything turns into a stressful situation without end. Everyone has something I guess. When is Skyler's surgery coming up? glad you and Cynthia are able to plant hop together. :-) You both had a great day too, it seems. So did Dannie walk the nursery with you both? Thanks for ID on the Sky Pencil. I have a narrow space that needs something tall, but I have read unhappy posts about Sky Pencil, not thriving, slow growth. Have you been happy with yours?

Well, that's the end of the thread and I am posting this quick without refreshing before this gets any

Have a wonderful day! :-) pm2

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 7:06AM
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Cool, windy and rainy today. I'm going to help DD with her garage sale this a.m. I think my job will be to keep Kenzie entertained. If the weather shapes up her and I will go visit a garden that is on a farm near their place. They sale plants for a local charity and you can tour the lady's garden as well. Kenzie will enjoy it I'm sure.

Jerri, it is hard to see a little life end after such a short time.

Cindy, a nursery trip with another Idyller is sure to be fun and expensive ;o)

'bug, is the heart surgery going to be this summer?

PM2, what a shame that such a lovely spot will be decimated by developers and to lose a nursery as well. You can never have too many of those ;o)

This garden is looking particularily pretty lately. We see this out our kitchen windows. I cropped out all the farm machinery that is sitting around these days. I have most of my tulips here as the rabbits don't seem to bother them so much here.

Enjoy your day

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 8:16AM
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If 100 bees died, how many lived? Saucy, you can answer this in your next 'The Bees and Mee' column, under the 'Reader's Ask' section. The phrase 'a full leg's worth of pollen' delights me :)

PM, Is that the original Jim Crockett Victory Garden? I remember that was on the grounds of WGBH, but don't really recall if I ever watched the original series with Jim C. I remember watching the segments with Bob Thompson though.

Deanne, fabulous pots as always! The one third from the end is especially striking. Is that a type of peperomia on the left?

Kathy, I'm glad that you id'd the L.laxiflora, I would have been asking. Great combo that looks like a fireworks display with those white nigella starbursts.

Michelle, I agree that bed is looking pretty - stunning actually! Very nice job on that. (But you know we do like to see the farm equipment, right?)

Yes, Cindy and I had perfect weather for an Idyll Twonion and packed a big wheeled cart to capacity. This place is an hour from my house, and worth the trip, but not one I make often. Dannie had a fun time accepting pets and leaning lightly on anyone who came near her. It wasn't exactly a power walk, but two hours on her feet wore her out.

Cindy, I thought about going back today too :-) There was a big blue pot there half price (can never have too many BBPs). But instead I'll mow the back and side yards and make a list of other clean up so that I'll stay on track. If we hit this place again, we should also do Surreybrook which is maybe 15 minutes northwest of there.

Cindy & I both bought Coprosma, something new to me and probably an invasive pest in Kathy & Denise land. Such tiny shiny leaves that they look wet, and oh the colors! My favorite pot pick up was a pink Justicia Carnea. I've already planted it and sited the pot in a shady garden, but I'll be moving it all summer until I find the perfect place for it.

A bright sparkley day here, and it's time to go outside and get my hands (and everything else) dirty.


    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 9:15AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

PM2, it is hard to imagine the nursery going. I bet there will be interesting things sold before it closes though. Not just trees, perennials and bulbs, but even things like the bricks and benches! It is sad that nurseries struggle so hard these days. The shipping costs aren't helping them either. We have a nursery nearby that is fairly "ho-hum" but I am watching it closely. This is the second year for the new owners and I am looking for changes. It is tough though, not an imaginative crowd they cater to.

As to Skyler's surgery, we must wait for the surgical team to discuss the case (next week) and then hear their evaluation. Then decisions will be made. That is a super hard part for his two parents. Mom tends toward holistic treatment, Dad to more traditional. The doctors don't even like to meet with Mom because she tends to be hysterical rather than reasonable. Considering the mistakes made by them in the past, I can partly understand her problem. I think she is trying, but has a long way to go! The decisions made now affect his future as well as the present. Sarah has done LOTS of research and contacted many experts, both holistic and traditional. Dates for treatment should be made quite soon. Then I'll know when/if my presence is needed there. The hope is that first they will be able to attend the annual folk festival at the end of June. DSIL coordinates security there. But Skyler's aortic valve (bicuspid) is leaking badly a huge increase since 6 months ago, so it may be more urgent than a music event!

Sunny and warm and full of bugs here! I hope you make the most of this long weekend! So much to do here before company comes for dinner on Tuesday....I hope DH can help!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 9:34AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 9:37AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Good sunny morning all,

Well another perfect garden day on tap here again. I worked from 8 to 5 outside yesterday and woke up today with my bod telling me Id over done it a bit. Im still in the lifting and hauling very heavy stuff mode here and yesterday I lifted a 110 pound cement container up onto a bench and I think that was the activity that is talking back to me this morning. Im feeling a bit better with moving around so hopefully Ill work out of the sore back Ive got going on. Doug picked up a load of bark mulch for me yesterday so we re-mulched the container garden and that is looking quite spruced up. We also finally got the Gigantinormous Charles Grimaldi out of the basement (where it was happily putting up feet of new growth in the dark with its roots in a plastic bag. ) Id found a 42" pot for it at Home Goods earlier in the spring and it is now happily nestled in its new digs. Doug did the most clever thing and it will be interesting to see if this works. He got four very lage cement pavers, these are about 6" x 18" x 4"thick. Then we leveled the pavers under where the pot will be, he drilled holes through the pot into the pavers and bolted them to the pot. He also made some wooden pieces that are inside the pot to reduce the pressure points from the bolts. This will hopefully keep Mr. CG from blowing over in the wind this fall when it gets some size. WE also brought up the Red Abyssinian Banana and Ill hopefully get that potted up today too. I only have two more brugs in the basement and they will come upstairs today. It never ceases to amaze me how much work needs to be done between the last frost date of May 21st and the beginning of June. Phew! It took me a month to get it all in last fall and I want to get it all out in less than two weeks, LOL.

Cynthia and Cindy!!! How fantastic you were able to get together! Thats wonderful. Sounds like you have a great day. ~~ Ive had a Coprosma kirkii for four years now. I just prune it back and put it under the lights for the winter. A beautiful draping plant with lovely habit and leaves.

PM2, thanks for those pics of the Victory Garden. That tulip display is gorgeous. How sad that it will go under the bulldozers. And for what? Housing isnt selling here right now and weve got foreclosures on McMansions in droves lately. We lost one of my favorite garden centers a few years ago and the site is now a strip mall but at least they put a Starbucks there. ~~ The two pots behind the kitty planter are a Fuchsia Gartenmeister and a Heuchera.

Michelle, thanks so much for posting pics of that lovely garden. Beautiful!!!! It looks like a mosaic. What a marvelous collection of plants. ~~ LOL about the drainage hole for the kitty planter te he Well the bunny came from Home Goods and was particularly inexpensive. If I see another Ill pick it up and ship it to you for Kenzies garden. It really is pretty cute.

Cynthia, that plant is a Plectranthus and unfortunately the pot didnt have a tag with a varietal name. There was a label on the pot that said plectranthus and thats all. Id love to know what the variety it is as I really like the plant.

Jerri, so sad about the puppy. Not uncommon with large litters to lose some but that doesnt make it less heartbreaking.

Kathy, that Lobelia laxiflora is absolutely stunning!!!! What a beauty. It wouldnt make our winters here. Bummer.

Bug, your DD is a gem! It seems she is more of a parent to Skyler than his mother is.

OK time to do some stretches and get my day started. I got eleven containers planted yesterday and am hoping for a like number for today. Enjoy the day all!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 10:01AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Cynthia, yes, it was the second location of the original Crockett's Victory Garden. I used to watch it a lot when it was in Allston on the WGBH property too. I linked to Widipedia and at the bottom there it lists the four main victory gardens of the show. The second one is the one pictured above.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 11:18AM
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It looked too round for a plectranthus, but no wonder I loved it :) I don't have it (duh) but check P.oertendahlii Deanne.

Herb basket on cellar door potted. Major pruning of the wisteria on the pergola, included *3* of the trunks. Worried about the weight even though pergola is hand made and incredibly solid. Chopping trunks means I'll be cleaning up the dead leaves for a month as they drift to the patio. 30 years of vines up there so they only 'pull' out when they're dead and dry and can break away. I should take picture from underneath. Also want to show the cool hanging thing I picked up at garden center yesterday. I have sparkley things underneath the pergola and can see them reflect house lights at night.

'K back to 'work.' I love Saturdays!

(PS to Deanne, I've learned to get help for anything over 100 pounds. Too much risk. The gardener is as important as the garden, and if out of commission nothing will get done.)

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 11:46AM
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***Happy Birthday Woody***

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 11:56AM
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What vicarious pleasures to enjoy today, Cindy & Cynthia's nursery trip, PM's excursion, Michelle's gorgeous borders. Such a tragedy the nursery will be no more, and I'd heed bug's advice to keep a lookout for a garden fixture sale. I've got lots of coprosmas around, they're irresistible. Kathy, I've got your lobelia too, but because I do stuff plants in (yes, Deanne!) I had to hunt for it and pull some neighbors off it. What a beautiful plant it is in your garden.

Cynthia, that BBP has your name on it! Another acronym to add to the FAQ page.

My containers are pretty much full year-round, except for plants like coleus, which get tossed in fall, so I don't have the major shifting and filling spring and fall, but cutting back on water use is more my motivation for fewer pots this year. I'll probably dismantle the mossed succulents too. They go longer between watering in terracotta.

Jerri, such sadness. Our Newf Pamela's litter of eight had seven stillborn. It's funny how it does make one feel like such a failure, but as PM notes it's probably for the best.

Deanne, I especially noticed that plectranthus which I also bought this spring. Lost the tag but remembered "lace" and a Google brought up 'Emerald Lace.' See if that doesn't fit your new plectran. I've tried that pinked stripy tradescantia next to it too, but it sulked horribly for me. Can't wait to see that pot knit together for you. I'm deliberately avoiding comment on your moving a 110-pound cement planter.

'bug, at least with his new stepmom Skyler's got a well-informed advocate for his health, and a biologist to boot! The holistic v. traditional issues sounds like a minefield, especially with a mechanical valvular failure as opposed to, for example, treating an autoimmune problem holistically. Oy!

For our beekeeper: Marty's employer, City of LA, does a yearly tree giveaway, and he always gets a few since there's usually a lot of takers for free trees. This year a new seedless variety mandarin orange was included which we gave to the next-door neighbor, and while googling the variety I came upon the fact that since seedless varieties will revert to seeds if pollinated naturally, by BEES, that this is "discouraged," tho wasn't clear how. But Spain actually destroys the bees to save their seedless crops, since they're a huge exporter of mandarins and tangerines (word comes from "Tangiers."). The Pixie variety mandarin doesn't last long here at farmer's markets, carted off by the case by its fans when in season. It is a truly glorious thing to eat. With citrus, watermelon, grapes going seedless, it just might be another piece of the puzzle as to why bees are struggling.

Yesterday all four of our schedules converged to allow a Friday matinee, a rare event, to see the new Indiana Jones movie, which I'm happy to report is not bad. Afterwards a trip to the pub, where it's nice to see your 25 yr old son still get carded.

It started spitting rain Thurs night, which was quite a novelty, then actually started pouring real rain last night. This morning there was a 10-min downpour, and I filled a trash barrel full of rain. Unheard of for this time of year. Here's Woody's b'day shot, the smoke tree frizzed with rain.

Happy Birthday, Woody!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 12:06PM
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Saturday morning Idylling is the best ! Ive already been to the grocery store, and we are on tap for overcast skies and a slight chance of showers-it sounds like the rain diverted down Denises way.

Cindy, I was disappointed that you didnt figure out a way to post photos of you and Chloe rolling on the new carpet, lol !

And Deanne, re; your comment on L. laxiflora , and your unsuitable climate---since when did that ever stop you ??? Dont you need a few more pots for your basement next year ?

Basic green and variegated Coprosma is a pretty commonly used landscape shrub here..I love the way Michelle used the rocks in the photos she posted this morning..very artful design. We all seem to be zooming back and forth between the garden and the computer .

Okay, time to get to work spreading some compost and then tackling the garage. Back later

Kathy in Napa

Happy Birthday Woody !!!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 1:06PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I love Saturdays too. :-)

Gardenbug...I definitely lean toward holistic and alternative medicine because it has helped me at times when standard medical treatment has failed miserably. In the case of a heart valve though, it is hard to imagine there is an alternative treatment to surgery. I can see the consideration of long term meds after surgery though. Blood thinners the rest of your life might be something I might research to see if there was a feasible alternative. The level in the blood has to be so precise though, I would think it would give his heart doctor fits to even consider doing anything to complicate things further and who could blame them. Still, the bottom line is always what is going to be the best long term solution that will preserve as much of his health as possible. He is so young to have to face valve replacement. Always good to look at all your options, which it sounds like is just what you are doing.

I am so excited! We made a trip to a nursery, that I think I read Sue post about on a NE Gardening forum post. Perennials by Susan. It was about a 50 minute ride, but we enjoy a weekend ride sometimes and we were just in the mood. Very nice woman. Started as a hobby and turned it into a business for the past 30 years. Not even a facility, just her house and property. No signs, nothing. Very Very healthy plant material. Imagine our surprise to learn as she walked us around the property with a cane, she was 10 weeks out of both knees being replaced. [g] Amazing. Anyway....what I am excited about is what I brought home from Susan. A Japanese Jack in the Pulpit, they started from seed. We had just started walking past a border and were turning a corner and stopped dead in our tracks looking at this HUGE black Jack sticking up through variegated foliage, with the whitest largest almost mushroom shaped bud inside it. The back of it was black striped. It was amazing. She had one for sale, that was younger than hers and not as large, but it had a flower on it, so home it came. I am really too tired to go out and take a photo. But as soon as I get a thimble of energy back, I will post it for Woody's BD greeting. :-)


    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 3:54PM
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If you look carefully, you will find one brindle dog butt, and one entire dog somewhere in this picture :)

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 4:43PM
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And the long weekend continues..It rained most of the day here-light rain, no wind, and I think we got enough to actually allow me to skip watering this weekend. So, I spent most of the day cleaning the garage and doing laundry. The garage looks pretty good considering there is still way too much crap-ola in it, and I am storing packed boxes in there as well. The rain stopped about a half hour ago so I went on snail patrol-this is perfect weather for the hateful little devils-about 60 degrees, no sun, and everything is wet. I caught a few in the act. Needless to say they are no longer with us (inject maniacal laughter here) and the Sluggo has been distributed.
I really need that Plectranthus that Denise IDd in Deannes pic. That genus has certainly come a long way availability-wise since the olden days when we all had creeping charlies hanging in our houses (in macramé of course) .

Cynthia, found the doggies in Woodys card.. I love photos of your garden. Keep em coming !

Denise, believe me I am right there with you on the pack em in and air circulation be-damned mode ! At least you can pretend the weeds arent there since you cant see them . Im bummed that you have to dis-assemble your moss basket succulents , Water rationing will be happening up here but so far it is East Bay (Berkeley, Hayward etc) and no talk of it in Napa county yet. One thing I am going to do is to fill my two watering cans while I wait for water to be hot in the kitchen. I would be able to water several containers with water that is usually wasted.

PM, I do stake my Delphs but could probably do a better job of it. Below see a couple of pics from this week.

Good Saturday evening to all!

Kathy in Napa

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 8:12PM
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Happy Birthday Woody!!!!

I haven't read for a couple days but did see some photos that say Happy Birthday to Woody and I just wanted to add my good wishes that she have a wonderful birthday. I hope to catch up with everyone soon.

I'm such a rotten Idyll friend.....don't mean to be, but that seems to be how my life is right now unfortunately.

Hello and my best to all!!


    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 8:55PM
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Kathy, I know that I've mentioned it before, but I'm not sure you would have been here yet, but the garden with the rocks is an attempt to disguise an ugly well pit and water meter. Near the middle you see a hump, that's it and the birdhouse covers the water meter. Who would put such an ugly thing in the front yard. Only on a farm LOL

PM2, your excursion sounds like a nice way to spend a weekend afternoon.

Cynthia, I just love seeing pictures of your garden. Its so interesting.

Deanne, Doug sounds like he is very clever. I hope it works for Charles.

We enjoyed the garden tour and the nursery stock. Kenzie, my mom and I went. DD isn't a bit interested and she needed to clean up her house for a 2nd visit from househunters. Kenzie saw some calendulas in bloom and twisted my arm to buy them for her ;o) The day was horribly windy, damp and cool. The sun shone briefly after I got home.

Since the Secret Garden is to the north of the spruces I had some break from the wind, so I worked on the shed. Since it is 40 years old, some of the trim needed replacing, I'm pleased to say that I did this all myself. I'm quite proud of my carpentry skills. I also painted the floor which was spotted with white paint. The outside still needs painting, so its all an ongoing project.

A little birdie told me it was Woody's birthday.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 12:02AM
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Good morning all!

I packed up my family and sent them off to Maine yesterday before the sun was peeking over the hill in the back :) I decided that yesterday would be my "indoor accomplishments" day and FINISHED wallpapering my dining room! I woke this morning just as surprised as I was last night when I went to bed. Nick will be shocked! I just haven't felt like I've had the time or energy all at the same time.

I spent breaks SALATing on the deck :)

Today is ALL DAY outdoors day :) I'm considering painting my front porch - it's primed and ready for the finish coat. Nick bought the supplies last weekend, but didn't get around to it, so I won't even have to leave the "station" :) to get supplies.

Michelle, that garden is a beautiful disguise! I can't wait to see the playhouse as it comes together - what color is the floor now? Calendula is perfect for "petal picking."

I LOL at the visual of Cindy and Chloe rolling around together! How nice that the Idyll Twonion got together for nursery haunts! You guys scored good!

Water rations would be hard for me. I am frivolous with my watering can :) I do turn off the water for teeth brushing, though. Luckily I live in a town that sits on water and even sells to the towns around us, so we have never seen a ban on water here.

There's a big old Blue Jay that keeps sitting on my bee hive! He keeps turning his head as if he's watching or listening to them. I wonder if they eat bees? I have seen them clean out a paper wasp nest in the winter (I'm assuming they were after the larvae).

Time to google....

TTYL with a card for Woody, too (must find some beauty to "shoot")


    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 7:03AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Yes, it is a shame to lose another nursery and to developers is worse. I agree, with the market what it is why more housing now, but the property itself is in a residential area of expensive homes and must be a real jewel that lots of people have had their eye on for a long time. Also, the owner has gotten older and ill.

Michelle....what an ingenious idea to disguise your water meter and well pit. I would never have guessed. I love rock gardens and you have done a nice job with yours. I see you have some dianthus edging your rocks. One of my favorites of late, since I discovered they winter sow so easily, dependably and grow so fast. If I don't like them or they get too messy I can start over. I have a pile of them that I am anxiously waiting to see what they will do this year. I have winter sown lots the last three years. So far, my favorite are Siberian Blues. Phlox subulata is another favorite. I love your short white tulips and iris.

Isn't it nice to have someone in the family interested in gardens with you? Glad you have Kenzie. Does it surprise you that DD isn't interested? I still find it so hard to understand why everyone in the world isn't interested in So you are going ahead with the Secret Garden....I was thinking, what about a Pussy Willow Bush? Plus one of those very white variegated Willow shrubs. I always wish I could grow them but they want a lot of moisture and I have the opposite. Very cute baby bird! Looks like he just got out of bed. lol

Kathy...Ahhhh! Delphiniums! One of my favorites. I love the one with the white center. SO pretty! I haven't even staked mine yet and better hop to it. I'm never happy with the way I do mine either. :-) You are pretty far ahead of me I can see. We have to start on our garage soon too. You are just so on top of things, Kathy! Did you use any organizers in the garage?

Cynthia...where's Waldo? lol I can see them both. :-) What a lovely garden. Is that a grass behind the birdbath? I really love the way it highlights the color of the birdbath. The archway over the steps is nice too. Such a pretty mature garden. You must have been working in it for a long time.

Denise...I love your photo of your smoke tree. I may have to put that on the list of what to replace the SGold with. Nice shot too. Did you actually get the rain drops to freeze in mid air?

I had a conversation with DD on the way to work on Thursday about Harrison Ford being too old for another Indiana Jones movie. She said 'oh mom, he's not that old.' I said...'he is older than I am, and he has to be in his mid sixties.' She was incredulous and insisted he couldn't be more than in his mid fifties. She googled it when she got to work and emailed me that I was right. She couldn't believe he is 65. Ah, love those words coming from DD. [g] I have to savor them since it is only recently that I started hearing that once in

Deanne, that heuchera is a gorgeous color. Blackest I've seen.

Well....another really gorgeous day shaping up out there again and mulching is waiting for us today. Finally getting some things looking ready for the summer. Weather is still cool enough to work, what could be better than that? I hope you all have this nice weekend weather. Hello to all...


    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 7:09AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)


    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 8:15AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Woody...hope your Birthday was spent doing what you enjoy most.

Happy Birthday!!


    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 9:57AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Hope you had a wonderful weekend my friend!

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 10:22AM
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I missed the sunrise this morning, but Westerland made up for it :)

I had taken the camera out to get a shot of Complicata, but it doesn't bloom until the sun is on it and it faces south so... a while yet. A single petaled wild looking rose that only blooms once a season.

I did notice Climbing Pinkie has nicely smothered the lampost... and the white clem that used to be the star there. A little remains on the driveway side.

The driveway behind it is covered in orange debris from the tulip poplars. (I prefer Denise's Jacaranda colored drive.)

Here's the doo dad I picked up at the mid atlantic idylltwonion. (Thank you for picking up on my word play Saucy :)

All the debris under pergola is related to my wisteria IED. I bagged the worst of it, but need to go through with the blower and a bucket of water for the furniture, which some one brighter would have moved out first.

The black windchimes have six foot pipes, weigh about 40 pounds and sound like a cathedral. Deep calm tones that ripple in your chest when you hear them. I bought them last summer during a two week period when Katie didn't go to the vet so I was feeling flush. It's probably the most frivolous money I've ever spent and I am so proud of myself for not passing them up :)

Denise, is that Grace blooming? I bought that last year because the foliage on yours is so stunning, the blooms in the rain just striking - I need new adjectives here. You captured it beautifully.

Kathy, I grew delphs in NH, but too hot and humid here (usually) to do a good job with them. Is there anything you can't grow? :-)

Michelle, what a sweet photo of the birdy! And you should be proud of you carpentry skills. Cindy mentioned that we should have some sort of workshop where skilled idylers teach the rest of us. I also want to learn hypertuffa from Saucy, and felting from Mary.

Ok, I didn't get the side and back lawns mowed last night. Went out after supper and my 'nice' neighbors were having a party, so decided to be neighborly and wait a day. It was a church party (men wore suits!), but they had a live rock band which went on past 11PM... I slept on the other side of house with closed windows so no problem.

PM, Glad you found a treasure from your trip. I remember Sue mentioning that place. Do you have to call in advance? Yes, that's Hakonechloa macra (Aurea?)next to the birdbath. One of the few grasses which will grow in shade. That garden is my oldest, at 8 years. Hard to believe I've been here that long!

And a clear blue day here with temps not expected to top 70F. The lawn mower gets to wake up now.

Have a good day all, and special Hi to T!

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 10:22AM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

I'm sorry this is so late....I hope you both had a wonderful day on your birthdays....

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 10:48AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Just posted some garden photos if you care to peek.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 11:00AM
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Gorgeous here - a full day in the garden I hope with a lunch break bike ride with David and friend to a Creperie on the canal. Annie is with her grown cousin in Philly for the weekend - we both drove to Binghamton for lunch and she went on from there. I rather miss her but am sure she is having fun. David is making up for her absence with extra high spirits and spent the morning practicing his golf swing aiming wiffle balls at my backside as I gardened. He has annoyingly good aim.


    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 11:33AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Thanks for the beatiful birthday pictures everyone! I did indeed spend the day doing what I like best - i.e. mostly garden things.... Today was another beautiful day spent mostly in the garden.

The first thing we did yesterday was plant a white redbud tree. I much prefer them to the pink ones. This is a really bad photo (the sun was too bright and I couldn't see what was on the little screen on the camera!) but here is the new tree:

There is one already in the garden over where you can see the bare trunk of the pine. The older white redbud is just about to bloom (it's always later than the pink ones...) I thought it might be visible in this picture but it doesn't really show up at all.

Yesterday, we had intended to do some plant shopping with friends in the afternoon and then go to their place for supper. We had an abrupt change of plans around noon though when my friend's father came down with the intestinal bug her youngest daughter had had earlier last week! So we met them to do some plant shopping and then came back home. We've rescheduled supper for next weekend. My friend brought the cake she had made to the garden center with her so I went home with a couple of plants (nothing too interesting...) and a cake! (Since Randy also made a cake yesterday morning, I had two birthday cakes!)

My friend was mainly looking for annuals to make a 'moon garden' for her little girls. For any of you grannies or for anyone with young children, you might enjoy the 'Roots, Shoots, Buckets and Boots' book I gave my friend's girls for Christmas a couple of years ago. Last year they planted the Sunflower House and this year they're doing the Moon Garden. Amongst other things, the book provides 'recipes' for gardens like that. Here we're checking what else my friend needs to find:

Today's big project was getting the posts for the rose swag into the ground. Randy dug the second pair of holes yesterday and we got the posts set in concrete today. Next weekend we'll get the chains up - for now we'll hang the chains high; I expect ultimately to have two or three tiers of chain running along the posts to maximize how many canes we can tie in. The posts are cedar and we'll let them age to gray.

After we finished the posts, we planted a few things from the pot ghetto and then went for a nice walk along the lake.

And a couple of plant pictures from today... My Jack Frost brunneras were a lot later to bloom than gb's but they're blooming really well this year. I really like this one in the north alley:

Also in the north alley, the astilboides is off to a roaring start!

The 'Randy' magnolia is fading now but still looks pretty with the Viburnum lantana companion behind it.

I was hoping to have a picture of the chinese wisteria in bloom by now but it's being very slow to strut its stuff! Hopefully this week it'll bloom; the buds are extending now but only barely showing color on a few.

Shish kabobs on the BBQ await...

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 6:35PM
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What a treat to get so many nice pics from Woody. Even an action shot of garden center shopping-made me think it would be fun to post pics of our fave garden centers. PM and Woody may have started a trend.
I did errands in the morning and spent the rest of the day in the garden-the predicted rain did not show up. After the close inspection of my succulents after the vacuuming on Friday I noted that one of my Thomas Hobbs-ian succulent pizzas was in need of renovation. Yesterday I made a sweep of all the discount store garden centers in town which I have found for some unknown reason to have some pretty nice selections of cactus and succulents early in the season. I made a nice score at Home Cheapo and even got one at the fake garden center that appears outside of my grocery store in spring. I have posted below the before and after pics. I found about 10 snails using this pot for a hotel .
So I have also noticed for about the last 2 or 3 years that my Nora Leigh phlox is reverting. This year over half the plant has come up with green foliage. Anyone else have this happen ? Kind of a bummer .

Now that the roses have ended their first bloom cycle I have turned my attention to the dayliles which seem to be opening now at a speedy pace. Its fun because most of them were new to me last year and Ive forgotten what they looked like, lol! And of course with dayliles what they look like one year may or may not be what they look like the next. I will post a couple of pics soon.

Tomorrow I plan to go nowhere all day-car stays in the garage. Still lots to do in the garden.

PM, I dont thin I responded to your question about what I used to vacuum the succulents, and it was indeed my little 1 gallon ShopVac, portable and easy to drag to the back yard. Fabu-fabu J in P on Woodys card ! Dont blame you at all for snatching that up.

Cynthia, since you asked, I cant grow Lupins, Physotegia , and can barely grow tuberous begonias. The begonia thing frustrates the hell out of me. We are in a good climate here though not as good as closer to the coast, and I follow the growers instructions diligently. Still I get no blooms till September , and not very many at that. I must have some odd micro climate going on here.

As usual , wonderful photos from bug on the link she posted.

Ok thats all for me, got to go back out and clean up all the tools etc that I left laying around

Hello to all, and mias too-Honey, Eden , Chelone, Babs, Wendy, Dremasure I missed afew..

Kathy in Napa

Before-these were dug out and transplanted to the garden.

After, all snails dispatched, new soil and discount store selections..

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 7:47PM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Well, I think we are still married! DH dug out a Mrs Robert Brydon clematis which had roots deeep deeeep deeeeep into the ground. He said he heard some tonal Chinese language being spoken at the base of the hole! There were many shovels, broken stems, chopped off roots, etc. But it has been moved and a rose and two other clematis now live there. DH has showered and then we bought groceries for tuesday's party.

Earlier in the day he brought me a rusty sculpture of a bird. I'll try to share that with you another day. I gather he picked it up from a fellow selling them at a gas station...It's OK, but not my heart's desire. I'm really surprised though because he hates 'things' in the garden...even ones I love.

Here are today's photo postings for you. This should have been the robin thread!

Bonne Nuit!

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 10:05PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Good morning! I can't believe it is another gorgeous day out there. I can't remember the last time we actually had a long holiday weekend with weather so beautiful you could actually enjoy it. [g] We did something very rare yesterday....we actually sat in the yard. lol We normally are always working in the garden, but DD came home from three days of participating in a wedding of a friend and was tired enough to slow her down. So we dragged the lounge chair out of the basement and she fell asleep listening to the birds. DH read the paper and we saw a pair of neon orange orioles for the third time this spring. I turned on the sprinkler....we are dry here....and while watching the soothing motion of the sprinkler, I did some LALATing [Lounging and looking at things] Now that doesn't quite roll off the tongue. :-)

Marian! How nice to see you posting! What is the name of that very colorful iris? It is quite eye catching. Do you have a lot of iris? I had never grown an iris until someone gave me two clumps at a swap about three years ago. Last year I made my first iris order. I ordered three and they added a bonus, so four lovely rhizomes arrive from Mid America. I follow specific instructions to the letter to pot them up. The next morning I head for the pots to see how they are doing and the darling squirrels had dug them up and run off with all but one of them. I tried salvaging the one that was left, which had bite marks in it and managed to repot and later get it into the garden. But I had no idea which one I had left. Here it is! I had to post a photo to ID it on the Iris Forum because it wasn't any of those I ordered, but was the bonus they sent. It is called 'I'm Back' and was a Thomas Johnson 2007 introduction apparently.

So how are you doing Marian, and what is new in your neck of the woods?

Cynthia...I am enjoying your garden. Love your Climbing Pinkie. So full of blooms! I envy you your huge windchime. I am collecting windchimes now but DH does not like the sound of a loud one, so I am limiting mine to soft sounds.

Gardenbug....your spring garden is so chockful of gorgeous plants. It must be amazing in person. Do you have a lot of fragrant plants? Great shot of the robin and her eggs. They are quite large aren't they? Love that color!

Mary...DS has quite a sense of And so do you! :-)

Woody....I really enjoyed your photos! I would bet your friend was very glad to have you with her at the nursery. You are quite the busy bee. I bet you can't wait to see the swagged rose starting down the chains...and I can't either. :-)

Kathy...I do like that idea of taking photos at garden centers. I would love to see the one you buy your succulents at. I always try to remember my camera in case I see something I want to think about later. Love your new succulent arrangement and the pot is a beauty! I have a Nora Leigh which is coming in variegated again but it is only my second year with it. Sorry to hear it may convert. My Frosty Morn Sedum had a lot of green on it this year, but I just pull off those and it seems to fill in fine. BTW, speaking of begonias, where are photos of your collection?

The JJinTP, had been grown from seed and apparently took 4-5yrs to produce the bloom. I know they do winter sow quite well, but who wants to wait that long to see a bloom? A plant I can be quite happy having just one of. :-)

Happy Memorial Day!

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 6:21AM
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I'm feeling a bit sore after yesterday's accomplishments :) I removed an overgrown "foundation" shrub grown too close to the front porch, and in the way of my paint job! I tied it up to the truck and pulled it out of the ground, chopped it into manageable Saucy-sized pieces and carted it off to the woods.

Then I potted up plants, but still not done.

And then a friend made a surprise visit - with cheese! She brought a picnic and we ate on the deck surrounded by the newly potted plants.

It has been a good productive weekend - I am inspired to continue today :)

Woody, I too am excited about seeing the progression of the rose along the chains! Your brunnera is stunning - that's my favorite color in the garden.

Kathy, where does a snail live in a pot? On the bottom? No snails here, but we had lots in TN.

What a perfect Robin's home! She's a smart bird and picked a good spot :) Very cozy. I was peeking in at my bird's nest yesterday - no chicks yet.

Before I forget: the reason I fed the bees was because they had been in transit so were locked inside with no pollen coming in....and when they arrived here, they needed a couple of days to get their bearings (same way you and I do when we move to a new town - figure out how to get to the grocery and back....bees figure out how to get to the food and back). If the queen sees food production grind to a hault, she will quit laying eggs, which slows the whole growth of the hive.

The total number of bees in a good healthy hive is around 40,000. I think I started with around 10,000.

At least that's what the novice gathers from her meager teachings :)

Anyway, they're all coming in with bright yellow pollen and seem to have adjusted nicely - they've formed a bee line, and have stopped eating the sugar syrup, which I would guess means they are finding food on their own :)

Maybe pictures today as we're supposed to suit up and check the inside of the hive :)


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 7:25AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Bzzzz! Another National Geographic photo of a Honeybee.


Saucy, are you eating Wheaties for breakfast these days?! [g]

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 7:44AM
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As if one day a year were enough to remember those who paid the price for our freedom, today is that day. My insufficient gratitude to those who sacrificed everything for this country.

And yet another beautiful day to enjoy!

Wonderful pics yesterday! GB's nestled Robin, Kathy's blues and terra cotta, and Woody's 'Day in a Life.'

PM, the name of your saved Iris seems prophetic :) And I'm with your husband on the wind chimes. The tinkly ones are grating and unfortunately what most people cringe from when you say 'wind chime'. I have a set of that type given by a well meaning friend. They're on the far right in the photo above, and I purposefully tangled the cords so that they won't ring :) The ones I like are thick walled and low toned sounding like bells not chimes. If you go to this link, you can click on the green 'listen' button right under the picture to get an idea of what mine sounds like - though I swear mine are even deeper toned!

40,000 bees Saucy! I had no idea there were that many in a hive. There was a swarm in a neighbor's yard last week. I don't know what kind of bees, but they now live in a tree there. There are fat lazy bees in my yard that Dannie snaps at and she's managed to catch a few in her mouth. I cringe and worry and sometimes dance oddly when this happens - cause I don't know what else to do.

I finally got the back and side yards mowed yesterday, and kept going to the front. Now everything looks tidy, and I can play today. More patio clean-up. I washed the patio furniture yesterday and sponged down the more grungy looking pots. Problem with shiny ceramic is that rain splashes pollen and dirt on their sides. I was going to move the grill so that it would be under the flood light, but had padlocked it to one leg of pergola. I did find (what I think it) the right key, but the lock won't open. WD80 (WD40 inflation) applied to all openings, but no effect.

I hit Joanne's fabrics yesterday with my weekly 40% off coupon and channeled Mary to help me pick fabric for the wicker chair I've dragged into the sewing room. But she was facilitating target practice in her garden and couldn't be bothered. So I ended up with beige ticking and a dark brown moire patterned fabric with quiet -almost invisible- light dots in it. Will do different sides of cushions in each. And the splurginess is fancy satiny braided piping for edges. I should have bought foam for the wicker footstool pad.

Off to the morning in the yard.


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 8:23AM
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What a weekend! Just perfect weather for gardening and hanging out and though the pollen is extreme, everything smells delicious outside!

Happy Birthday to Woody! I'll grab some shots for you as soon as the camera battery gets replaced.

Raised bed is planted: 'Early Girl', mini yellow pear and 'Pruden's Purple' tomatoes; scallions en masse, carrots (kid request), radish (Kyle request), white patty-pan squash!!!!, crookneck yellow squash, purple and red and yellow peppers, two pumpkin seeds just for fun.

Marigolds and Liquid Fence ring the area for rabbit abatement. I've been using the dog training techniques described here to train the rabbits. Maybe it's the bright sun causing muddled brainwaves but they seem to be listening! "Shoo" sends them scurrying to the woods where before they would just look at you as if to say "stupid human, we know you're not going to hurt us so we'll just keep munching on your new growth." Neighborhood kids are astounded.

PM2 -- We're still trying to figure out weekend activities. If people would only stop being sick and/or stupid life would be much easier :-)

Most containers now have mix in them and most will also have lilac wave petunias involved :-) Never a bad thing ...

Found Deanne's article at HD during an emergency run for more deck stain yesterday. The pics looks "more like you" than any other I've seen, and of course the containers are FF++++.

Need to go WALAT a bit and will then venture to a very local nursery for a few odds and ends. My First Trip To A Nursery This Year!!! Sticking to plans is not always fun. LOL

Thinking of all, particularly Skyler's immediate and extended families. It's not easy to be a step-mom or a mom of a great kid with a step-mom. I've been both and the line one needs to walk can be pretty thin. As long as Skyler knows he's loved by all, everything will work out in the end. Just curious where Skyler would want to go to school if he was old enough to have a vote .....

Best to all.


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 8:51AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Prairiemoon, we are in a grieving mode here. One of Nolon's 1st cousin's granddaughters was killed in a head on wreck Saturday morning. She had just turned 17. She was on her way to work. Her father is the County Sheriff.

I don't know the name of the iris I posted, but I agree, it is very pretty.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 9:59AM
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woodyoak zone 5 Canada(5b)

Marian - my condolences to all of you! I always think a car accident is one of the hardest ways to lose someone. No warning, no time to mentally prepare yourself, just WHAM! When it's a child/teen or a parent of young children, it must be so devastating for the family. It must be particularly hard on her father, given his job where he's likely seen too much of that sort of thing.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 10:19AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Very sorry to hear your sad news Marian. What a heart breaker. Another too short life. :(

As to Skyler and schooling, Martie, he has been begging to go to the school near DD's house ever since they moved there. His best friend lives around the corner and he has many friends there. His biomom does not allow him to play with neighbor children.
This weekend DD was caring for his best friend as well. They all had a fine time because DD gave them some challenges: walking home alone from the variety store together (one street crossing) and also walking home together from the nearby school playground. They loved it and felt so grown up. Although Skyler is nine, he has not been allowed to do much on his own. He is a bit scatter brained, but we figure each responsibility will help him. Yesterday DD gave the biggest challenge: Take the path through the ravine to the other side, find a house with a #3 in its address, pick up a pebble from the property and bring it home to show me. WOW! They LOVED that one. The house number was 2432. :)
And yes, Skyler knows he is loved by all, but he also knows things are dicey now and again and is sometimes told that is because HE is BAD. Tough business. Recently his Mom has been trying hard to make wise decisions. Wouldn't it be nice if it lasted! It is all incredibly complicated....

I edged a very difficult area of the veg garden this morning. Only 3 more sides to go! I am hoping my friends will come tomorrow to tidy up a bit before the company arrives! I need them and they need it should work!

Cynthia...your projects for this weekend sound wonderful. I hope you have a perfect relaxing day enjoying the spruced up garden.

Saucy, eager for your photos!

Fabu-Fabu iris PM2! Right off, I can't think of many scented plants here. Perhaps that is due to the "fresh country air" LOL in this rural farm area. Even some of the lilacs have little scent. I need to think about this! An excuse for more plants???


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 10:53AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA very sorry to hear about your grand niece, correct? There is something so shocking to see a young person with their whole life ahead of them, die senselessly in a traffic accident. Very difficult! One of a parent's worst nightmares. My sincere sympathies to your whole family.


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 12:13PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

DH attended the memorial service this morning in a neighboring town. He has only missed a couple of times. We have already been watching some of our favorite related movies, of which there are many. We were watching Von Ryan's Express on PBS yesterday. The Longest Day is one of our favorites, but haven't seen that one on lately. Tora, Tora, Tora, is another one. Anyone have other favorites?

Cynthia...I didn't realize they had mp3s of wind chimes online. I had fun listening to them, thanks for the link. :-) Yours sounds very full bodied for sure! I had not even connected the name with the fact it was the only Iris that came Good catch Cynthia! That will stick with me every time that iris blooms now. worries. That is how it goes sometimes. :-) Yes, it smells wonderful here too. Lilac pallibin just opening and smells yummy!

I haven't even started my veggie garden yet. I haven't bought tomato plants and for sure what I want will be all gone by now. At least that is what happened last year. I have one chance of finding some at the local swap next weekend though.


    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 12:30PM
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