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Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Posted by ctlavluvr (My Page) on
Wed, May 9, 07 at 7:57

Wellness comes in many forms. A new name, a new Park, and vigorous hope for Wellness from continental coast to coast!!


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good morning, everyone!! Things are humming around here and I mean literally. In the past month we've had two different bobcats, seven truck deliveries, a new mechanical system (oil to gas) mid-installation, and there are BEES IN THE GARDENS!!

First want to share my concern and good thoughts with everyone's families, pets and selves who are going through tough times. Also want to share the laughs that digestive systems of all sorts, 13-year-olds, garden helpers, and deep roots bring.

Miss the CT swap this year but have been swapping individually with folks. Nice to have things from the Park to share!! I can't get over that it's Year 3 (bet all of you can't wait for it to be over, either) and the wonder it brings. Hearing about roots heading toward the lava mantle is making me Very careful about planting sites.

Finally picked the centerpiece plant: Malus 'Louisa', a weeping crabapple that turns up at the tips (like an upside-down tulip), reaches the ground, will grow 15x15, blooms a true pink, fruits, and by sheer luck is an outstanding speciman found at a client's. Not your usual weeper. Tried to find a good link but there aren't any so I'll snap a few pics and get them to you. Look For This Plant!!

Hope to drop in more frequently.

Mantra for this Idyll "We will be well .... We will be well...."

Best to All!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi, Martie - nice to hear things are going well for you -- I had that Malus Louisa on my list of possible additions to my small garden, but was afraid it would be too broad eventually - but it sounds like you got a really nice specimen -- I love weepers! I got Malus Cranberry Lace this Spring that's only supposed to get about 8 X 8 but it's supposed to more vase shaped; but I look forward to seeing pics of your Louisa!

Sorry to hear about the death of friends, Mary and 'bug -- untimely deaths are particularly heartfelt I think. Thinking good thoughts for you all.

Kathy -- I think you & have have similar sized small gardens and I totally relate to the eupatorium problem -- I loved it & while I was prepared for it to "make a statement" - when it decided to take keep spreading far and beyond what I thought it would (another instance of plants not reading labels), I got drastic. I started in the spring; ripped & dug out as early as I could; used a bit of roundup on the remaining bits & then laid a plastic black garbage bag over it for the summer. I still had 1 or 2 incorrigible pieces but they came out pretty easily perhaps from the deprivation of the sun, etc. - so give it a try (the black bag look isnt terribly attractive on the ground, but you could mulch over if you need more aesthetics).

Ok, I'm posting in the box & can't remember what I read on the rest of the other thread -- that's a sorry confirmation of short-term memory loss! yikes.

Michele - asapargus hunting? explain!

O -- right -- Eden -- hope the tree guys didnt take too much shade away from you - it was nice of them to be careful of your lovely garden (we need pics!!). Seems like a lot of our fantastic gardeners here are camera deprived -- and we're deprived of current wonderous shots -- maybe we should take up a lurker collection donation fund for you guys? After all, w/ no great pics for them to look at, they'll go away, LOL.

Well, we're going to hope this will do the trick for Health and Wellness to all.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

We're having thunderstorms here this morning. That's ok though. I worked in the garden all day yesterday and we were getting to the point where things were getting a little dry. The tree trimmers were great. Not a twig in my garden. Now to see how the plants deal with the added sunshine.

I don't remember if I told you all that Jenni got her engagement ring a couple of weeks ago. They also put in an offer on a cute little house so things are moving along.

The myosotis are blooming in my garden now and I think of Ei everytime I see them :) I hope she's doing well!

Marie, I'm hoping for a good report for Charlotte from the vet. So sorry to hear about your friend.

Mary, what terrible news for you too. I'm glad you were able to work it out on the yew.

Martie, your malus sounds pretty. If this is your third year I bet you really notice plants starting to fill in.

Cindy, Brad's been starting to shop for a new camera so hopefully I'll be back in business with pictures soon. How big is your garden? Mine's quite small, my back garden's approx. 40'w x 70'l and the front's only 40' x 20'. I've been meaning to tell you that my cercis covey made it through the winter and is growing!

Deanne, have fun playing in the dirt today. There's no better way to spend the day. I was totally content yesterday, just me and my garden, lol!

Michelle, a morning garden stroll is important to me too. It's definitely worth getting up 15 minutes early to start your day out in such a great way I think!

Brenda, it sounds like you're working hard. Hope you get to squeeze in some gardening time really soon.

Cynthia, thinking of you and yours!

Kathy, hope the kitties are all on the mend now and you too now with the tooth issue.

Babs, it was great to have a post from you. I know how busy you are. School's out soon so maybe you'll be able to Idyll more. I hope so!

Hi Saucy! Sorry to tell you but teenage girls are ALOT worse than teenage boys, at least that was my experience. Much more moody and able to hold a grudge. I hope your experience is the opposite and Sarah's easy for you!

I have to get going here since I have Bella today and the thunder is getting louder too. Boy now it's really raining hard! Have a great Wednesday everyone!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Thought maybe I could dive in here. I don't know what is happening, maybe I have poor time planning skills, but I never seem to have a chance to post anything anymore. I had hoped to post on the last thread, but it ran out. I too have well wishes for everyone who is dealing with personal challenges right now. Sorry things have not been as you would wish them to be and hope things improve soon.

I have some good news to share. My daughter is going to have a baby. She is due on December 31st.They are very excited, and do not plan to find out what it is going to be. Must be the latest trend, right bug? When I was having my babies, we couldn't wait to find out.

V- I really liked your pics of the trilliums. Hope you have a fun time with family this weekend.

Deanne, I love your pics of birds. You are doing a great job. I also loved your hydrangea pic. I put it on my desk top at work. thanks for sharing.

I have been fighting the good fight with weeds. It seems like I am going to lose this battle. I am at my wits end with these dumb things, and am not sure what to do about it.On a happy note, I planted my Dainty Bess and Golden Wings roses and they are getting leaves. I see some clematis coming up.. maybe this will be the year I am able to grow some. A friend also gave me a Sweet Autumn clematis, so I am looking forward to seeing if I can make it grow. My daughter is putting in a new fence and she said that I can have her old one. It is a picket fence, and I have a dream of using it for a potager garden. I am also trying to stick to my plan of getting shrubs instead of other plants this year. Last weekend I got a Rhododendrun.

Sue, you cracked me up with the ER story. I am glad you are able to still exercise. My Jack Frost that was 3 years old disappeared this spring. But the one I bought last year showed up. Does anyone have one that is older than 3? Just wondering if it has a limited life span. Seemed like someone elses disappeared.

Kathy, thanks for the beautiful rose pics, so nice to live in your area.

Honey, good to hear from you. Loved your pics too.

Cindy what was the new HR declaration? Always interested to hear these things.

Michelle, your window treatments look lovely. And your house looks very organized and neat. I need to throw away about a ton of stuff in my house. I don't know why I hang on to all this clutter.

Ei, if you are reading this, I might get some outdoor speakers for Mother's Day. How did you choose the ones you have? By the way, I got two David Russell CD's,and I am really enjoying them.

Well, that is about it from me. Hope you all have a beautiful sunshiny day!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Back from the vet's and Charlotte's blood work. She is being groomed too. Now the 3 day wait for results. :(

Some photos and then I'm off to mow.
Clematis Florida


A new geranium

I love my variegated astrantia!

You may remember that I am always cursed by a red tulip in every white planting of mine.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Great tydll, Martie. Great to see a post from you, even a short one.

Good morning, all. Still dealing with the cough, nasal drip and fatigue from the bug, but Ive definitely rounded the corner. I putzed in the garden yesterday, but it still needs major labor and I only have until the 19th when we leave on vacation for a week to get it in shape.

Its raining, yeah! We need it, especially since our sprinkler system isnt running yet. Ive been dragging the hose around. The sprinkler guy is supposed to come tonite and hopefully will fix it and get us operational. Were supposed to get t-storms off and on all day. Sounds like a nursery crawl and/or container day to me! I especially want to visit one nursery that has Hydrangea Blushing Bride. I want to pick one up for my Mom and I want some for me, of course.

DH had another scary day Friday. Thurs. nite, the porter they've nicknamed 'Darth Vader' dropped off a palate of boxes in his dept. There was not announcement about more terminations, just the boxes. Everyone was left to wonder who would be next. DH said all 8 people on the aisle of cubes next to him were told they were losing their jobs. So Friday was a day of mourning for many there. It's particularly bad b/c most have spouses who have been unemployed for quite some time and many may lose their homes.

We had another strange 'banking' thing happen Sat. Our old mortgage co. finally sent us our check for left over escrow in our acct. When we opened the envelope, checks for 15 other people were inside, too. We sure could've had a nice vacation w/all that money! Ennyhoo, they told us to shred the checks and they'd reissue, but thanked us for calling.

Cynthia, thanks for your comments on the front landscape redo. I think I need more evergreens out there, but havent figured it out yet. All in good time, I guess. Ruth has picked up some 3 tall selections of little girl series magnolias and has them sprinkled throughout her garden. Wouldnt that be do-able for you? They are too pretty. My Jane is about 10 tall. I bot a large one so the new section of the front landscape didnt look too out of proportion with the old on the other side. The old is overgrown and Im dying to rip it out and redo it. Maybe this fall. Well see.

I concur with Cindy. Monty hit the lottery when he found you. Theyve come a long way in treating dogs with cancer. My Moms dog lived 5 yrs. in after his diagnosis and side-effects of chemo were minimal. I hope its similar for Monty and you.

Bug, youre the same zone as we are and Jane is hardy here. Why dont you give one a try in a protected area. Ill bet shed do OK for you.

Oh, V, that pic of trillium is glorious. What a fabulous job youve done on your prairie.

Kathy, thanks re my spring pix. Spring has been so long in coming here and as usual, will be short. Ive been anxious to see what my fall labors on the new front landscape yielded. So sorry to hear about your encore dentist visit and Doobie. Hope hes OK, poor thing. I think the Idylls should band together and get a group discount on pet health insurance. If we lived in the same town, we could single-handedly support a vet practice. Sheesh.

Deanne, poor Rahjii. How's his paw doing? So wheres the pic of the bright yellow male finch in the PJMs? I just love, love, love all the crisp pics you share with us. Thanks so much! Your artistry is unparalleled! I hear you about plant loss. I cant believe how many things Ive lost, too. But I guess that gives us an opportunity. I seem to have too many of those, tho.

Chelone, that's one smart cat you have that can open the door of the carrier. I just roared and identified with y'all when hearing the tales from everyone about wrestling the furbies into the carriers.

Michelle, we, too, have ducks wandering our yard. Momma duck is looking for a place to nest with Pappa following close behind quacking up a storm like he's saying, "make a decision already, woman!" It always gives DH a chuckle.

Eden, I agree with Mary that your family is amazingly loving and supporting of each other. Im sure that will be so comforting to your Mom and all of you as she meets the challenges ahead. Im so sorry the power companys trimming up the trees will change your shade area to sun. But that was unusually thoughtful and considerate of them to keep the limbs from crushing your garden.

(((((Bug))))) My deepest sympathy on the loss of your dear friend. From where Im at, I agree, 67 is still quite young. Whats so hard about our ages now is the losses of so many loved ones. Oh, those tiger cubs are so very cute. Thanks for sharing the pic. Oh, and bestill my heart. Youre garden pix are fabu. I particularly like the variegated astranga. Hmmm, where could I put one?

((((Mary)))) My deepest sympathy to you, too, on the loss of 2 friends! It really is sobering when such vibrant lives are snuffed out so quickly. My heart goes out to you and to their wives and children.

Cindy, hall monitors? Is this grade school? I agree. Seems like every time mgmt changes, they reinvent the wheel. Such a waste and frustrating for you. So sorry to hear about your Mom and the pneumonia. Im sure theyll get a handle on it quickly, but it must be such a worry for you.

CONGRATULATIONS Drema! A new grandbaby. How fun for you. You must be so excited.

Hey Saucydog! How great youre posting regularly. You, too, Babs and Brenda.

OK, gotta get this day underway. Its really raining quite hard and the plants seem like theyre lifting up their heads and drinking it in. And I love how green everything is looking. Later, friends.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi again,

Bug, love that astrantia! I think I'm going to have to have that. ~~ Best of luck with Charlotte ~~ LOL about the red tulip, mine has now reproduced and I have two red tulips where I don't want them. ~~ Here is the requested pic of E. 'Little Joe'.

And another 'Dapper Dan' male Am. Goldfinch in his fresh spring plumage.

Hi Martie, guess what 'Jean Pascoe' is alive and kicking!

Eden, we are supposed to get those thunder storms tomorrow and Friday, I'm actually going to have to put sprinklers out this afternoon. Some of the raised beds are bone dry and stuff is wilting. Last May we were under water. Go figure

Hi Drema and Cindy

Later gators

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Deanne, I love that Little Joe!!! I've planted it twice and not had it come back the following spring but I'm going to try it again after seeing this picture of yours. Both times I tried it the plants were really small. I'm going to look for a more substantial one to start with this time!

Marie, lol on the red tulip. I actually think it looks pretty cool though. That sunnydale variegated astrantia is another one I put in last spring and I don't see this year. I love all astrantias but that one is especially eye catching I think!

Honey, sorry your cold's still hanging on. Good news that dh made it through yet another round of cuts but I feel so sorry for those that didn't.

Hi Drema, congratulations to you and dd on the baby news! How exciting!

Can you tell it's a rainy day here and I'm avoiding housework by spending time reading Idylls? Bella and I want to be outside. It does look like the sun may be trying to break through a little...


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Yesterday was a day of craziness here at work as new server had been installed the night before. Numerous bugs showed up.

Positive thoughts being sent to Charlotte and bug. Great pictures. I have that same problem with one red tulip in the midst of some pastels. I dug it up this spring and moved it to be with some other reds.

Drema, great to hear from you. Outdoor speakers sounds like a wonderful gift. What exciting news about the expected baby.

Honey, how awful for those that lost their jobs and Im sure your DH is relieved for the moment at least.

Eden, has a wedding date been set?

Mary, so sorry to hear about the loss of your two friends.

Cindy, I forget that a lot of you are city slickers. Asparagus grows wild in the country ditches and at this time of the year it is very common to see cars parked along the road and people in the ditches with sacks. I have some in my garden and added 20 more plants last spring. Of course if you know a spot where it grows wild you keep it a secret.

Hi, Martie, it sounds like things are happening in your garden.

I have an odd 1 hours of vacation that needs to be used and this afternoon sounds perfect.

Deanne, I envy you being able to spend the whole day in the garden.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

The neighbor I work for has an asparagus patch and we regularly snack on the young tender shoots - they're as sweet as young pea pods!

I'm so sorry for your bad news Mary. I hope you find some peace in your garden today.

GB, I remember you telling us about your friend's diagnosis. It seems to me that we will all have some sort of unfinished business in the end. Reminds us to enjoy today.

I like the red tulip statement. Do you suppose there is some prankster at the bulb "factory"?

Nick leaves for Florida tomorrow afternoon. I'm looking forward to no dinners (I've already asked the kids and taken their orders for "fast" food - sandwiches, etc.) and less laundry. I'm going to plug away at my garden list and work on my bedroom - it's in need of a slight makeover....and dust bunny removal. Yes, I'm going under the dust ruffle :) If you don't hear from me, call someone.

LOL about the hall monitors. Better off to promote happiness in the workplace. I've always been productive when I'm happy. If I'm unhappy I spend my time thinking of ways to get happy!

Glad your tree trimmers were easy on the garden, Eden. Hope you and Bella get outside...has she made a mud pie yet? She may still be young enough to "try" her creation :)

Nice to read about everyone's days and different garden experiences. Talk to you all soon.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Mary, I just read of your loss of two friends. I am so very sorry. The ache is terrible, isn't it? Radical pruning and a lot of tears will ease the pain and provide a channel for the sorrow that will continue for a long time to come. "Sorrowing" takes a wickedly long time. But you will be OK, remember that. I'm struck, though, by your reference to excessive speed... . "Speeding" is my number one "pet peeve". I held a commercial driver's license for many years and NOTHING drives home the importance of observing traffic laws faster than driving a 40' bus with 60+ passengers! try stopping one of those babies when someone in a car does something "stupid"! No one ever plans a tragedy.

'bug, Pancreatic cancer is virulent and it claimed one of my neighbors who was delightful. My father turned 69 the day before he died; I know well how vital 67 can be. I've nothing substanitive to offer in the way of comfort. But remind yourself of the good he did when he walked the earth, and how much HE affected you for the better. Weren't you fotunate to count him as your friend for his too brief stint on the planet?

I need immediate Clematis advice, please. I bought a Vitacella and have a dim recollection that I want to plant it DEEPER than it grows in the pot it's in... is that right? The gal assured me that it wanted to be planted HIGHER, but that set alarm bells ringing in my head. Please advise... also, confirm that this is one of those that can be cut off at 18" every spring.

I hate kids and dogs. You know that. And now we have to listen to more talk of babies?! ;) You're killin' me, Drema... but what great news. Do you know how to knit? best get rollin' on the booties, m'dear.

OK, now let's ease off on the teenagers, you guys. I feel compelled to stand up for the little meatheads (you know I hate kids). They're just doing what they're programmed to do... the same stupid s--t we did when were that age (oh, forgot! we didn't do any of that stuff; too busy walking to school uphill both ways). I never could relate to the girls at school (was too busy with my horse, my schoolwork, and lived too far away anyway), so couldn't comment on girls being "worse" than boys. But I was plenty "fresh" with the 'rents; "attitude" at the ready! They used to just smile at me, remind me to "ease off" and watch my mouth. They were really good at asking questions that really made me THINK about things and then keeping the dialogue going. I, of course, thought they were foolish. Such is the mastery of parental "slight of hand". ;)

I'm so hoping the spate of pet woes has come to an end. Also that collective health issues and attendant costs are soon curtailed. It's springtime, it's time for health, vim and vigor!

It's so very dry here I can't even feature how grim it must be in areas now flooded. Nor how rains can put the kibosh on planting... . There is so much to learn. :/ I so love hearing reports from Michelle and Brenda.

I should have gotten up earlier today and enjoyed more of the yard at dawn. I returned home to find the big maple and pine tree GONE. The destruction has begin and I'm not feeling any excitement about it, at all. Frankly, I want to vomit. I know it will pass, but seeing large trees and the cool buffer they offered from a busy tourist road VANISH in hours has me scared. Oh, Eden, I SO understand how you must have felt. I'm glad I "missed" the maple and the pine tree. :(

I commented to the tree guy (quinessential Yankee, he's great) that we were only missing one cat. I figured she was in hiding since he hadn't seen her? NO. She hadn't been "chipped"? NAH, we only chip 'em if we kill 'em... . I cracked right up at that one. Like a cat would hang around near chain saws, a chipper, and a bucket truck? what was I thinking ANYWAY?! (She's back).

Talk me down, Martie! you've had plenty of experience by the sounds of it... nice to see you post, BTW.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

It's not a viticella, it's a Jackmanii clematis... I'm thinking about the loss of trees. I'm shell shocked.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Well, over $600 later and all we have for it is a healthy cat and questions relating to Charlotte. Blood test results in a few days. Maybe thyroid issues....or other. She has a cool short haircut...a different beast now.

I think kids are often treated shabbily by adults, whether 6, 8, 10 or teen. At stores others are always served first. I've seen little children with their allowance waiting for 3-4 adults buying lottery tickets and cigarettes before being waited on. It makes me boil. Bus drivers often seem to complain about the teens too, but to my mind, they are on top of things as far as ID and change are concerned while the adults ask tons of questions, block the aisles and complain often.
From my teaching experience, I'd say that bad teen girls are evil compared to rotten boys. The girls are frequently devious and wicked. With boys, it is all physical stuff or shy awkwardness. My kids? They were pretty good. There were crazy things they did, but not wild parties, drinking, smoking, speeding or picking on others etc.
And of course I have seen outrageous things coming from "adults".

Drema, exciting days ahead baby wise!!!!

Oh Mary....such sad stuff to deal with. :(

It rained a bit before dinner time. I planted a few things and picked asparagus for a friend who dropped by. He has been caring for his wife for at least 10 years now. What a soul! Anyway, he said no one had given him fresh asparagus in 20 years and he was thrilled! He took photos and hopes to come here for a painting session with a friend one day soon. How fun!
Lots of weeding and planting still to do. Most of the mowing is done.

OH! Yes! Viticellas: Plant deeper, to the first node, so that if some critter chomps away at the top, roots will grow from that point. Keep watering often. Do not unwind the roots unless you see them choking the plant to death. Make the hole 18" x 18" at least and mix bone meal into the soil. Insert the support at planting time so you don't stab the roots later on.

Deanne, thanks for the photo. I bought a Little Joe and wondered how "Little" it really was!

This is the season of yellow in my gardens:
Marsh Marigolds

Wood Poppies

Fairy Bells

Good night all!


Chelone! :) Same planting for your Jackmanii. Prune it to 6", 8", 10"....wherever the first healthy node appears. Do that in April usually. Some people don't prune their Jacks and let them bloom high up at the tips. Depends if you are trying to hide an awkward shed or not. I cut mine back. I hate risking getting mildew and want air circulating. If it does turn brown and ugly after blooming, you can cut it back and hope for a second bloom.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

OK, 'bug... lemme make sure I have this right! I have a Jackmanii clematis. It has 2 established canes, and 2 that are new growth. I want to interr it up over the first set of leaf nodes? yes?

I'm cool with the depth of the hole (the Eupatorium used to be there, it's plenty deep and wide enough, lol). After I plant it, will it die off above ground? what should I expect? It will be planted on a large trellis with a "Polish Spirit" and my goal is to have cut it off every spring and then leave it alone to cover the trellis and hopefully part of the arbor that supports the climbing hydrangea.

Thanks for being patient!

Jack & PS

Yes to your first question about depth.

What to expect.
a) It could die back and reappear later on.
b) It could thrive and take off right away.

It will be fine with the trellis as long as you are prepared at this time of year to attach the new growth stems almost DAILY for a few weeks! They grow so quickly once they get going and you can't catch up easily later on. It is nice to have them spread out fan shape style for a nice framework. Be very careful as the new growth can snap easily.

Polish Spirit grows very nicely and can be huge. It is similar to the Jackmanii in colour, so not a big contrast...if that is what you are looking for.

Ask away! I'll tell you if I don't know the answer.
Polish Spirit July 2003

Jackmanii July 2006

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good evening

Thank you all for your kind words - its amazing what a comfort it is to have such understanding and supportive thoughts.

Today was easier. We had another glorious spring day - my single flowered Kerria Japonica is now is full bloom, surrounded at its base with the palest blue Iphoeon flowers. I was pleased to have a spring combination that actually bloom at the same time and looking at both I could not help but feel joy. Another succes were the tarda tulips below the base of the star magnolia. I just love the seamless handoff of the flowering trees and shrubs at this time of year. First the forsythia, then apricot, star magnolia and weeping cherry, followed by the Red Bud, saucer magnolia and today's kerria. The azelea and crab apples are only days from bursting into bloom too. It's a feast for the eye.

GB - your spring shots are simply glorious - so full of lush green and vibrant color. Ouch on the vet bills. Hope they can find something to help Charlotte.

Deanne - what a fantastic bird shot! I just love being able to look into his eye like that.

Dreama - great to hear from you and congratulations on the news about your grandbaby. Grandchildren seem to be rather in vogue with the Idylls this season!

Cindy - I had no idea asparagus grew wild either! So is the new hall monitor appointed?

Honey - my fingers are crossed for your DH. I added a small "Jane" last year and it has 4 lovely blossoms right now and I'm loving it. I can't wait till it reaches a good size.

Saucy - hope you get to enjoy some garden time - dust bunnies can wait LOL!

Eden - we will need those thunderstorm soon - definitely getting a little dry. Fortunately we haven't been hit with anything too hot yet so the bulbs are still in full bloom. Congratulations on Jenni's engagement ring and house offer.

Hi Babs!!! Hi Michelle, Brenda, Martie, Chelone, V, Cynthia and anyone I'm missing.

I have a little wrapping to do before Annie's birthday tomorrow. I bought a pale blue pair of crocs (her request), an itunes card and a couple of books - "Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul". Annie has a play rehearsal (she's a pirate in Peter Pan) from 5-9 PM tomorrow night so we're going to celebrate with cake and presents after she gets home. It looks like being a busy day.

have a good evening everyone


PS - I had a great find at HD - a beautiful Red Majestic Contorted hazel, nicely grown and just leafing out. I'm planning on placing it in a new bed by our mailbox where it can be enjoyed up close all year.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

((Mary)) & (('Bug)) I'm so sorry to hear of the deaths of your friends.

Congrats, exciting!!

Michelle, we had some wild asparagus for supper just the other was SO yummy! You gotta get it quick, though. Kinda like with mushrooms...People come from all over the place to yank em right out from under ya!

I've just done a quick skim, so I know there's a lot I missed, will have to catch up later. The sun is a bright orange ball cutting through some wicked looking fog, so I expect I can find my way to the tractor now. There were threats of heavy rain yesterday, so I had a light day and got to come home and do some weeding. Today it's back to the grind.

Have a good one, all!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Brenda - if ever I have a busy day I imagine what some of your farm days are like. Hope today isn't too exhausting.

Deanne - my beautiful coleus collection are all outside in the shade of the garage, looking stunning and already getting compliments. I've potted a few of the babies on already - it's astounding how quickly they grow. Do you remember the big blue pots we found with you and Sue last fall? I'm having fun deciding which will go in those.

Off to greet the day.

Happy Thursday everyone


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Morning all, well it hit 90 degrees here yesterday and is supposed to get as warm today! Good grief, the few bulbs I do have a frying up in the heat and sun. I'm going to have to move a bunch of the potted up plants out of the sun today as it is just going to get too hot for the new to being outside plants today. Didn't we have days that didn't get over ten degrees just a few weeks ago?

Last night my friends the U's (the couple you met Chelone) and my friend MJ stopped by for Chinese and we had our first al fresco meal on the patio. It was just terrific until the black flies came out. But the summer season is now officially started here.

I worked a bit on the pond and still haven't found why the large pond liner loses water too fast. I've a suspicion that the Japanese Maple has stretched out its toes over the back side of it and is helping itself to drinks of water. I'm going to remove a couple of the Chamaecyparis pisifera as they've gotten too large for their location. And so it goes.... Always something else to do.

Mary, I'm so sorry about your friends. That is such a heartbreak. I'm happy you can find solace in the gardens. Sounds like you've got lots of things blooming right now. ~~ Happy Birthday to Annie!

Brenda, don't work too hard on that tractor today.

Saucy, LOL! I'll bet there is some wicked person at the bulb packing plant that puts those red bulbs in with the pastel bags. And the worst thing about them is they are indestructible and they multiply while the ones you wanted just fade away.

Drema, big congratulations! Exciting times ahead for your family.

Michelle, thanks, I wasn't able to get as much done outside yesterday because it was so darned hot. I had to keep coming inside and cooling off. Just not used to the 90's yet.

Eden, interesting factoid, I thought I lost my 'Little Joe' but yesterday I noticed that it is only starting to emerge right now. Really late to break dormancy.

Bug, sorry they still haven't diagnosed Charlotte. ~~ More gorgeous pics, thanks!

Honey, Tom's situation at work and those poor people who've just lost their jobs is my worst nightmare. You must be living on pins and needles with that situation. ~~ HOpe you are feeling better soon. From what I've heard that virus that was going around this winter lasted a long time, I know I was sick for several weeks.~~ Thanks for asking about Rajhii, he seems to be all better. ~~ You are sooo... kind, I'm so happy you like the birdie photos. Send me an email and I'll send you a link too a photo gallery I've got on line. ~~ The finch in the rhododendron was on the last thread.

OK I've got too get a move on here, my friend is coming to go plant shopping today and I've got to get my time at the gym in before she gets here.

Later gators,

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Deanne, I just read your post and ran out for a quick check and low and behold I see Little Joe just barely poking up through the soil. Made my day!

Beautiful gardening weather here today. We had soaking rains yesterday but 80F today and sunshine. Be back later...


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Drema so neat about the baby news congrats! re the HR news at my firm, it was a bit of a "bust" apparently (surprise, haha) they dont yet have their act together [read havent yet hired the people they expected too; heaven forbid they give the jobs to qualified persons inside] & have postponed the details of their new system so Im still holding my breath to hear about how much these hall monitors (official title "customer service support coordinator"!!) are going to be shadowing us but I'm pessimistic about it. Ill let you know when they announce their details of the "program" after all.

Eden your question re my gahden size got me to really trying to estimate I guess you can figure its two L-shaped plots of only about 48 X 24 each; w/ a couple of additional short 3 X 3 areas; then Ive expanded along the fence line outside to a border of 3 X 48 or so... so maybe smaller than yours. I guess that explains part of my problem as a plantaholic in getting things to bloom together in groups. Its one of my most annoying frustrations Ive got some wonderful geranium Samobor blooming now & 10 away are some pretty pink columbines that would go great w/ it. . . . but do you think if I move the aquilegia theyll be there next year? of course not! sigh. . . .

I adore astrantias too; but they dont seem to last very long in my gardens too much clay I guess. I do have a couple of the variegated ones; Ive found them to be somewhat unstable in retention of the variegation; I think I read it has something to do w/ how they were propagated. The geranium Margaret Wilson reminds me of that Sunningdale astrantia.

bug those are simply stunning photos I continue to be amazed at the detail of the macro and colors.. Ive been experimenting & failing abysmally w/ my camera & its macro; it continues to end up blurry have got to pull the manual out and try to figure what Im doing wrong. Youd think w/ a 12X zoom Id get some really good close-ups; but so far this photographer aint getting em.

Saucy enjoy your reduced workload! Dont let those dust bunnies hold you hostage either.

Michelle thanks for the answer re the asparagus; I thought thats what you meant but this city slicker hates to show her ignorance too much. Neat (& yum) that you can find it in the wild.

Honey that is a horrible way to let workers go they know before they get told by the method how horrible. Im glad your DH is safe at present (altho having been on a "survivor" end of a RIF I know often its harder on those left behind w/ the workloads and duties that are dumped on them (to make them feel grateful for that paycheck).

Well, gotta hit the bricks. Lots of humidity here today made it feel like summer this a.m. I was perspiring & it was only 7:00 a.m.!

Hi to all others I know I missed replying to all wondering how Eis doing w/ her house sale?


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Good morning.

I'm far behind and although I've read the posts, I am afraid to mention specifics as there has been so much that deserves to be responded to, but I know I'll forget some very important things. I've felt badly for all those who have been ill, who've had their pets dealing with illness or injury, so many deaths have touched people's lives and then worries about job situations. I do find it great how supportive everyone is within this group.

We're doing fine here. I've had the twins and James quite a bit so have been busy being 'grammie' and loving every moment, even though it does get tiring sometimes. I'm thankful that we live close enough to our grandchildren to be involved in their lives---it is a blessing that many grandparents do not get to enjoy.

Well, I'm on the run for most of the day today and tomorrow will have the I need to get my housework and other duties done quickly this morning before I have to leave the house. Just wanted to pop in and say 'hi'........

Happy Birthday to Annie!!


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Another beautiful day here with sunshine and no wind. We are fortunate not to have black flies or lily beetles in this part of the country. Yesterday was in the mid-80s here. Not too bad for a week that was supposed to be mostly rainy. I left work at 2:45 and spent some time potting up cannas and pelargoniums that I had left go dormant. The cannas and dahlias dont look very promising, but well see. Rick helped me add cardboard and mulch to "Blueberry Hill" Actually, its more like Blueberry Hedge, but then he wouldnt be able to sing while we worked.

Deanne, I agree that 90 or even our mid-80s are a little much for this time of year. All my eupatoriums are always late risers. I have several Gateway but may look for Little Joe for another spot. They provide nice late season interest.

I have a Jackmani by my front door that I chop to about 10" in the fall, it is a very forgiving clematis. Mine gets monstrous and I dont want that by the door for the winter. It will need to be moved sometime in the near future if we ever redo the front walkway.

Saucy, I do pick asparagus out of the garden and snack on it.

A very happy birthday to Annie!

I hope the sun shines on you

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Yes, happy birthday Annie!

I am finding out what it truly means to be a business owner (lots of family had it's own business, but I didn't understand their cries back then)...the phone is ringing off the hook (read: it's hot and no ones AC works) and there's a hole in a roof and it's going to rain tomorrow. Now we're not roofers, but we put the hole there and the Property Manager kind of let calling the roofers kind of slide company, gotta go above and beyond.

Now payroll's due and I have to get the invoicing out so that we can have a payroll :) Ack...and the bank needs a visit from me, too.

And I thought it'd be easier with Nick in I'm tied to this stinking desk...but truth be told, I actually like it. I'm meeting new people and doing work I've never done before.

Oh yes, forgot to order the company clothing.

This morning I went to the orthodontist with Jake to have a torture device installed! Good grief, it's a palate expander and I have to turn the key to widen it each night. He's got a low tolerance for pain (just like his mother), so I imagine this weekend will be filled with lots of complaints.

'bug, I kind of agree about adults being mean to kids sometimes. I was looking around the school office today and they're very stern with the kids who come in. I remember how intimidating it could be to deal with adults in those years.

I'm sorry to use this post as a laundry list of things to do, but my brain has a one track mind today.


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I agree with Cindy, Deanne, and Michelle with respect to how unprepared we can be when the first hot day(s) appear. I don't generally mind the heat that much, but it was sort of stuffy in the shop today, and going from mid-50s to mid-80s is a big jump. We slated for some thunderstorms tonight and things will get back to "normal" after that. We really need the rain!

Michelle, thanks for the observation on the Jackmanii clematis. I was hoping for something very robust and easy to prune (I like the "cut it off at the knees" approach very much). The trellis in question is large and last year I moved a "Polish Spirit" to it. I wanted another one, but the Jackmanii was a as close as I could come. I am rather hoping for a nice "wall" of dark purple to contrast with the grey fence and trellis. It's so helpful to have the experience of others when trying something "new".

Speaking of experience, last year I was worried about the Eupatorium and Sue assured me it like to "get up late". I see NO sign of it yet in my garden, it's the same deal with the hardy Hibiscus... don't look for them until Memorial Day, and don't sweat it they'll be along when they're ready.

Something else I have wanted to mention (and forgot) is my admiration for those with "pocket" gardens. We have plenty of space and it's easy to just add more without much thought. I tip my hat to those with limited space and lovely gardens. To achieve all season interest and progression of bloom and a nice flow of color is no small feat, and requires dedication, brutal honesty, and attention to detail. I pass one garden in front of a very modest home on my way to and from work. I stopped one day and told her how pretty I thought it was. "But it's so small!", she said. But it is beautifully planned and executed. It's a treasure. I wish I'd been able to make the earlier Idyllunions. :(

The destruction continues here... 3 more trees have vanished, the chipper is running now. I feel utterly naked... all the places that provided cover from prying, tourist eyes is gone and I've noticed the speeding has increased too as the sightlines are now no longer compromised by foliage. GREE..AAAT!

Honey, you've referenced job cuts repeatedly and I've assumed they're related to the automotive industry (I think I missed the work DH does in one of my hiatuses). I know everyone says the economy is humming along, but I see the building slow down in my area, and I see the increase in repair work at the shop and downstairs in "the lab.". Sure, the well-heeled boaters can afford new stuff, but more and more of them are opting for $400-600 repair/rehab. jobs in favor of new canvas. I can only imagine the stress and worry surrounding mortgages/car payments/revolving debt when one or both spouses say goodbye to their jobs. And that doesn't even begin to address the nightmare of healthcare costs.

Speaking of healthcare... where's Sue (our little gasbag)?!

I'm glad to see T resurface, and wonder about Taryn, too (would love to see some shots of her emerging gardens at her new digs!). I am certain Nurse Ratchett, Cynthia, and Wendy are busy. Norma? PM2? Anyway, thinking of you all, as I do everyday when something amusing catches my attention.

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Evening, I finally got out of my blind and used the camera to take pictures of the gardens instead of the birds. Thought you'd all like to see a bit of what's going on here.

I took this one for Eileen as I knew she is partial to this combination.

Driveway garden with blooming Sambucus. Eden, this is the newly planted urn, the Cordyline Australis was wintered over from last year. The 'Sutherland Gold' is absolutely smothered with flowers this year.

Closeup of Sambucus flowers

The Brunnera Variegata made it through the winter fine even though two of my 'Jack Frosts' didn't

And we had a wicked line of storms through here tonight although they popped up all around us but didn't give me any rain. I need the rain desperately now though so I was disappointed that they dropped their precip elsewhere. This photo was a cell that formed east of here and just dumped an inch of rain on Salem NH.

Nitey night all

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Just checking in quick here tonight, have been reading diligently the last couple of days, but no time for the lengthy post I would like. I will report that all kitties seem to be on the road to recovery, I can almost chew on anything (toothwise), and I hope to post some pics this weekend , as the garden is growing up a storm. And have really enjoyed all the spring pics from the east-my 2nd spring !

Kathy in Napa

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Well, I've been trying to keep up. I'm glad it seems that most everyone seems to be on the mend. You all had me worried there for a while...

I've loved seeing all the beautiful pictures of everyone's gardens coming to life. What a great time of the year. And new babies to boot! Congratulations Drema! It's nice to see some names that I haven't seen posting for awhile. I know I'm erratic at best in posting, but I do love to stop in and read how everyone on is doing--I just am hesitant at posting.

I did, however, have a post-worthy experience today that I thought if anybody would understand my excitement, the idylls would! My best friend called me this morning and said she wanted to take my kids so I could have a free day. Hallelujah! Why was I so excited? Because it was the one day that the MO Botanical Gardens opens up their greenhouses and sell their overproduction plants for next to nothing. Yeah! Yeah! It was just wonderful. My 8 year old son (we homeschool - just so you all don't think that I had him play hookie to plant shop!) ended up wanting to come with me. He's about as good at identifying plants as most adults and we just had a wonderful time on a beautiful day buying too many awesome plants. Sorry to go on and on, but, honestly if any group could relate, I thought it would be you all.

OK, I guess I've gone on and on long enough. I hope everyone has a great mother's day weekend. I so enjoy hearing about everyone's adventures and gardening plans. My neighbor brought over a pitcher of daquiries earlier this evening, so I'll do a final toast to continued good health to all and excellent gardening this spring.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good thundery morning here, well Doug was supposed to fly home from Rochester NY last evening in the club airplane but had to land in Bimington, NY and stay there for the night because of the thunder storms, ditto this morning. He thought he could get out first thing but there are a lot more storms about today as well. Hmmmm... here's hoping he makes it home for the weekend.

It is just so wonderful to see all the trees leafing out and the gardens filling in again. I guess one doesn't realize just how grey and severe things look until the spring comes along with its new blanket of greens.

I've been killing lily beetles by the dozens here and it seems every day there are more. I'm hoping I've caught all the egg masses as well. What a bother to go through for a plant that should be effortless. ~~ The poor pansies and tulips and the few daffodils are just frying up in the heat of the last two days. The weather people aren't saying that we've broken any records but I don't remember getting two 90 degree days in a row in May before in the same week we started Monday morning out with a frost.

Today I'm planning on getting some containers planted up and clean up the corner where I set up my container garden. Speaking of containers, my Brug 'Charles Grimaldi' is already five feet tall and in a 24" pot and root bound, any suggestions as to should I root prune and give it any new soil before it leafs out?

Bug, thought you'd be interested, I bought three gorgeous clematis vines yesterday, a C. alpina Betina, C. 'Vyvyan Pennel' and another 'Betty Corning'. I absolutely could not help myself. You'd drop in a dead faint if you could see the beauty and maturity of these clematis plants. They are in huge pots and have enormous 'trunks' on them with several mature leads. I wanted to buy all of them!!!! You know how when you see an exceptional plant even if you weren't planning on buying it, it just leaps into your cart? I should get a pic of these beauties for you.

Sue and Monique, if you are looking for any clematis I'd highly recommend you get up here soon, the nursery has just opened for the season and the plants aren't picked over yet and are seriously the best I've ever seen anywhere.

Lauren, great to hear from you! How exciting for you to be able to get lots of good stuff cheap!!!! I'm drooling thinking about it. So what did you get? Inquiring minds would like to know?

Kathy, so glad to hear that you are on the mend and your dental woes are getting resolved, also happy to hear that your kitties are all better. Rahjii is also back to his bratty self and you'd never know he was limping on Sunday.

Chelone, you know, you really are a treasure! I love it that you stopped to tell that lady with the small garden that it was lovely and that you enjoyed it. You probably made her day and put a smile on her face for a long time. I've noticed this year we must have several new families in the area as several young couples have stopped to talk to me about the gardens that I hadn't seen before. It's great but I'm not enjoying the fact that I think they see me as the 'old, crazy, garden lady' ROTFLOL. I can't say as I make a fashion statement in my garden clothes but I don't see myself as the crazy old lady yet. ~~ When shall we set up the 'Perovskia' swap? Tell me, can you use any nepeta? My 'Six Hills Giant' are doing their thing and need to get divided again.

Eden, great news on that 'Little Joe'

Cindy, check and see what your shutter speeds are when you are taking pics. If you are getting blury pics on a regular basis it sounds like the shutter speeds are too slow. Either that or your auto focus isn't working properly. If it is the shutter speeds see if there is a setting to change the apeture setting and put that as wide open (the smallest number) as you can. That allows more light into the camera and gives you a faster shutter speed.

Bug, I almost forgot to mention that yesterday I also found an 'Arabella' for cheap. it was mislabeled with the one gallong perennials so I snapped it up. I have no clue where I'm going to plant these babies but I'm sure I'll find a place to tuck them in.

OK looks like storms are approaching so I'm going to shut down for a bit. Have a great Friday all

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll


Gasbag here checking in :).

My condolences to both Mary and Bug on the loss of your friends. Glad you could find joy and solace in the magic of your emerging spring gardens. It's a great time of year, isn't it?

Where do the weeks go? I've been getting into work a little after 7 every morning this week and staying til close to 6 or later. When I get home I try to squeeze in a walk since that's the only exercise I'm allowed to do. The other night I tried to take a few garden pictures but all I could see was all the stuff that needs to be done and I got discouraged so thanks to you all for sharing yours. Maybe I'll try and plant some containers this weekend.

For Mother's Day this year I decided to break tradition and go to see my own mother in NH. Tom will go to see his as usual. My little brother (who I also rarely see) got tickets to a Mother's Day brunch/cruise on Lake Winnipesaukee-his treat-can't beat that. Maybe I'll be able to swoop in for a quick visit with Deanne if I plan my time well.

OK, back to work. Carry on.


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Hahahaha! I love it Deanne. You've been bit by the bug....
Betina is a real find! I just got one last year and it has not really begun to leaf out my other early bloomers. I've never grown VP, but Betty Corning needs a HUGE spot. She's fantastic for everyone! And Arabella...well YOU KNOW!!!

It is gorgeous here! Grass is ever so green, bulbs are perfect. I had to laugh that the chipmunks nibbled only the red ones! Does that mean they see colour?

The weird thing yesterday was that a huge ugly turkey vulture landed on the top of our silo. Then 5 more perched on the roof nearby. DH thought it was neat, but they are really creepy to my way of thinking. They're gone now and I hope they don't return.

Down the road I saw the first batch of baby geese. I've also seen a small turtle several times and can't help wondering if it is one of "ours" from the batch born in our bathroom a few years ago. Many groundhogs around too. :( Oh, and the insect life is here once more too. YUCK.

I'm off to prune a large rose, then plant another one where a dead one sits looking ugly. Then some major weeding.

I'm hoping to hit the nursery tomorrow...and no, I don't need a thing! ;-)
'bug (of the grubby fingernails)

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

I have to agree with Sues comment about the magic of emerging spring gardens. All the foliage is so fresh and bright. I really enjoy all the touches of chartreuse that I have in my garden. It really brightens up the garden even when there arent a lot of flowers blooming. Although, my raised rock bed that is right out the kitchen windows looks quite pretty right now with lavender creeping phlox, pink Angelique tulips, white daffodils and white dwarf irises all blooming. Im surprised at all the tulips that are blooming that I dont recall planting last fall. The single flower fern leaf peony started blooming several weeks ago but the double is just open. I guess that's the reason for the common name of Mother's Day peony.

Lauren, what fun to get in on such great plant deals. A couple of years ago we went to the show gardens at Iowa State U and when we arrived first thing in the morning I was so excited to find that it was the day of their plant sale. I got some great plants at great prices. What did you all get?

Deanne, I meant to tell you that the Arabella that I bought at your suggestion last year is growing at an amazing rate. Wonderful shots from your garden. How fast growing is s. Sutherland Gold? - another plant I purchased after seeing it in your garden. Mine looks good but is quite small.

bug, LOL on the turkey vultures. We had some hanging around last summer, but I havent seen them since. You have to admit that they are interesting.

Kathy, good to hear that everyone at your house seems to be on the mend.

Chelone, will the garage give you some privacy from the road?

I'm sitting here at work with the windows open and enjoying the fresh spring air, the next best thing to working in the garden.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

OK Bug, you can laugh at me, that's OK, I just can't pass up a beautiful, husky, healthy plant. Especially if I have a ten percent off coupon.... Sounds like you've got perfect gardening weather except for the black flies. I'm still not able to get out as it's still raining here. Not complaining as we REALLY needed the rain but I'm hoping I can get outside soon.

Michelle, Arabella is a real star in the garden and you are just going to love it this year. Sutherland Gold didn't grow much the first year or so but last year it took off and got some real size on it and it's now over seven feet tall. I had one major stem die off last winter but it's now got a lovely urn shape so I'm not too disappointed. I don't actually know how large these things top out but David would so maybe we could get his input on that.

Sue, neat that you are coming to NH on Sunday. Would love to see you if you can work it out. Give a holler.

OK looks like the rain is finally stopping. I'm off to the gardens....

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi friends, a long day at work today and I'm pooped. It started with cutting and gluing 6" foam for 2 large berth cushions (80+"L x 32"W). Then I moved on to removing the sides of a large patio canopy (roughly 15'x24') so we could cut it down. Evidently, it was too baggy and allowed water to puddle at the front edge; it took me all morning and my boss hung over me like one of 'bug's Turkey vultures, fretting about how to effect the repair. She marked it last fall and was having "cold feet". I told her to quit overthinking it, trust her marks, and believe in her ability... hehehe. I will finish it up on Tuesday and hope to hell it's right, lol. But right now it's Friday and I'm not going to thnk about it any more. How's that for "attitude"?

Destruction continues here but the tractor is still here so I don't think they're entirely finished. I'm "over it" now, you guys. Now I'm looking at trees with a ruthless eye to their shape and condition... "it looks like crap, cut it and yank it!". Michelle, Brenda... I figure we can always plant "coHn" in our newly revealed "field"... is it "co ern", two syllables, where you live? Maybe you could "swing by" with the Combine? ;)

The garage will provide some measure of "cover" from the road, but it will be a few months yet! I'll have to get used to it in the meantime. :( We are going to meet with the excavation guy next week I think and we'll get down to the real "nitty gritty" of the drainage and fill required (a lot). There will be 50' between the garage's east wall and the road and siting the drainage pipes and clean outs will dictate where and the mature sizes of what we will be able to plant. I would like to establish a shrub border along the road but am constrained by the eastern orientation. There are pines across the road (due East) and I'm not sure what the profile of the garage will do to direct sun when it moves to the western sky in the longest days of the year, let alone the cold, dark ones, my fear is that the area will be a dark "bowling alley". Our lot is low and damp even in droughty conditions. Ideally, I'd like some md. ht. evergreens to block the road, but am not sure how they will handle the site; so much depends on the consult with the excavation guy. It's my hope you will be able to offer me some suggestions as I post pictures for you.

Sue what town in NH is your mom in? I'm quite familiar with the Lakes Region and MWV. Will you be cruising Winnipesauke on the Mt. Washington? You know, I've never done that! nor have I ever been to the top of it, lol! You never do that sort of stuff when you actually LIVE there. Depressed about your gardens? will you PLEASE get over yourself, you gasbag? Michelle asked me for more wide angle shots of my gaHden, but that would reveal all the things requiring "work" and stockpiles of the crap for which we're building the garage... :) C'mon! quit bein' a tease. ;)

Deanne, I'll be happy to meet you with Perovskia(s) anytime. I generally work Tuesday-Friday and am out early because I go in early. Maybe I'll drag my camera along, too. I have evidently reset something so it's now taking pictures with HUGE jpg files... . Your containters are lovely. I don't know how you squeeze time for their care and maintenance into your busy days. I have my hands full with 11 windowboxes and 2-3 urns. And I use the bullet-proof, cheap stuff in them. Looo....serrr, and not afraid to say so.

Lauren, I want to hear about your "scores", too. Interesting that you homeschool; how old are your kids and why did you opt for that approach to their education? are you planning to continue it through their teen years, too?

Enough for now. But, 'bug... I don't think the Turkey vultures were a "sign"... I think they know a good place to hang out when they see it; probably admiring your gardens.

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Finally got a good soaking that the garden needed. I couldn't get motivated to chase dust bunnies, so I did the usual Saturday morning clean routine on Friday instead. Today was a 1/2 day for the kids, so they helped as Sarah is having a sleep over.

I'm in kind of a funk today, so I'm just gonna post to keep me in the habit ;) I hope you don't think me rude.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

I found a crushed turtle in the road, fleeing the havoc in his wintering over territory, no doubt. :(

And there is a headless Goldfinch behind the emerging fern next to the front door.

The sliding screen to the deck has been SHREDDED... probably a freaked out feline trying to escape the brutal thunderstorm we had this morning.

And, Wrecks found the can of salted, mixed nuts the helpmeet left out last night... he ate nearly an entire can of them. Looks like the helpmeet will have dog "doo-ty" to night, when they really start to "kick in" in Rex's digestive system.

Hang in there, Saucy! I feel your pain.

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Chelone, check that settings aren't for tif rather than jpg.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Happy last vestiges of Friday! I actually had a vacation day today to go to DS's honors convocation. I so totally needed a day off that I thoroughly enjoyed the day, even if most of it was spent in the car. Had a lovely lunch at an outdoor cafe with DS, his fiance and my nephew, and we arrived home in time for a nice walk up in the woods. No new photos, though, as the camera has left for a trip to Italy. I tell you, it stinks to have a camera that is better traveled than me.

Things continue to be "interesting" in the garden. I was sure I had lost my fothergilla; Sunday there was not a leaf nor a bud to be seen. By Thursday, it was almost fully leafed out. One of my two cotinus looks like a Dr Suess plant right now. Since they are supposed to be somewhat balanced, I'll have to whack back both of them.

On a happy note, I looked at a garden area that I had totally nuked two years ago and started over, and I decided that this time I got it right. The first time around, I was trying to plant "sweeps" of perennials, and it looked way too boring. Now I have some nice combinations and vignettes and I am happy. I'd post photos, but you know I have that issue with that traveling camera...


RE: Idyll #317 The Almost Wellness Idyll

Oh yes, I was going to share another story with you all! Early last week when DD was home, she went to the doctor and was diagnosed with a sinus infection. The doc put her on amoxycillin and she started to feel better. This Tuesday, she called from school to report she had a rash. My immediate reaction was that she was allergic to the amoxycillin, and since her school health service was closed for the day, I helped her locate an urgent care office to go to. The doctor there pooh-poohed the allergic reaction and told her it was a side effect of the sinus infection. The next day, she was worse and went to the health service. The nurse checked her over, told her to quit the amoxycillin and head to the ER. Would you believe the ER couldn't decide what was going on? Since she was leaving the country today, they made an appointment for her with a dermatologist for the next day. The 4th health care provider finally decided that she was allergic to amoxycillin. Sheesh! I can't wait for the bills from this to start rolling in.

Dr V

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Friday is a welcome visitor . I am backlogged on the Idylls ! This will be as good a catch up post as I can manage.
Im doing a workshop tomorrow on container veggie gardening-I have the easy bit which involves potting up some plants and demo-ing "trash can" potatoes. I have all my equipment loaded in the car and my outline typed up. I have a tendency to ad-lib quite a bit when I do these things, so I need to have my outline to make sure I touch on all the points of importance. I had leftovers for dinner and spent about an hour deadheading roses-the first flush is winding down. This will be my last weekend at home this month. Next weekend is Indianapolis on business and then up to Portland the next weekend on vacation.

First I must say how much I am enjoying all the excitement of the spring season and the photos you are all posting. , and I hope everyones pets are on the road to recovery. Also best wishes to those who have lost friends this past week. I hope the renewal of spring will provide solace to all.

Drema , congrats to you !

T. glad you dropped in. It sounds like you are one busy lady..I can hardly imagine caring for one baby now that mine are all grown up ! And two?? I fear I dont have the patience anymore.

Cindy, your saga of the Joe Pye eradication was encouraging I just might try it.

bug, I particularly loved the pic of Clematis florida. So you are visiting the nursey and you dont need a thing ? Very funny. I just cant remember the last time I visited a nursery and didnt need a thing, lol !

Deanne, wonderful garden pics my pansies will all be pulled up for the most part this weekend. Time to replace them with zinnias or the like. Little Joe looks like just the ticket-how tall is that plant ? We dont have lily beetles here- I think my snails make up for it though. I bought two wonderful clematis last spring from Chalk Hill and promptly lost the tags. I have no idea what they are. This prompted me to create a new procedure. I got several zip-lock bags and labeled them for various garden areas-"island bed" "front garden" "east perimeter"..etc.Im sure you all name your areas too so you get the idea. When I buy a new plant I now put the tag in the zip-lock for the area I planted it in. If I move the plant I move the tag out of one bag and put it into the other. This is working quite well for me so far. PIc of one of the mystery clematis is below.
Hope your DH makes it home soon !

So Lauren, where is the list of the plant purchases ?? What a nice way to spend a day , and how nice it is to see ones children showing an interest in horticulture.

Geez Sue, your work hours sound like mine-however I have not just had surgery ..I hope you arent overdoing. I usually do 6 to 5. Try to go home at 4:30 but that just does not always happen.

Chelone, I too have come to terms with trees that look like crap ! My birch in the front yard is on borrowed time-they suffer from bark beetle infestations here and have one left of the three I had originally. They are water hogs too.

Dr V , my cat is on amoxicillin. So far no rash that I can see. Hope your DD gets some relief.

Okay, some pics from these parts

My lost tag clematis. Ain't she purty ?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Eden and Sally Holmes hanging out together.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The Idylls have raised the bar on my pot arrangements.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Thats all for tonight...wishing you all a great Saturday ..

Kathy in Napa

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good evening Idylls

late night here - I was hoping to stay up to greet DH who should get home at 1 PM but I'm running out of steam. I also leave for the market in 5 1/2 hours so should make this brief.

For some reason tonight I was reminiscing a Christmas long ago we spendt with our departed friend. It was our first Christmas without any family and we decided to do something completely different. Forgoing decorating the apartment or presents, the four of us (this was in the days before children) got dressed up and went to The Russian Tea Room in Manhattan for lunch. We had the most marvellous time - oodles of ice cold vodka, caviar and various Russian deliciacies all in the most wonderful old world surroundings, served by waiters in Russian costume. We came back and watched the movie Dr Zhivago. Many years later when we found out we were leaving NY for Rochester our friends treated us to a farewell dinner at the Russian Tea Room that we enjoyed every bit as much. It's funny how some memories are as clear as day yet others so quicly lost.

I think bed calls



RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll again

Ooh Kathy - I just refreshed and saw your gorgeous photos. I lOVE the container, and the clem is indeed purty, as are your roses!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Yes, Chelone, we'll be cruising on the Mount. I actually got married and had my wedding reception on it...a three hour My mom has a house in Gilford on Varney point that is currently on the market. They wanted to downsize to something with less stairs and bought a small manufactured home in Bristol on Newfound Lake that I haven't seen yet.

I hate seeing crushed turtles in the road-especially big ones. If people paid more attention it would be so avoidable.

Kathy, nice container. I plan to plant at least one today but doing so will require a trip to a nursery for material. Yes, I've been working alot lately. Last night I didn't get home til quarter to eight but I did take a trip downstate late in the afternoon to visit one of our facilities with a co-worker. We stopped for drinks on the way home. Can you call that work? I

OK, let's get this show on the road. I wasn't going to leave for NH til early tomorrow morning but I think I'll go tonight. Between now and then I have a few garden chores to tackle.



RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Sue, I wish crushed turtles could be solved by people paying attention. In our experience, drivers actually aim for them. A sad commentary on the human condition.

I'm confused Sue by your saying you were married on the Mount because once before you spoke of your wedding on a boat. I must have a sorry memory indeed. Aging is rough!

LittleGardenbug is working on drawing up front and back garden plans using PhotoShop. I can't imagine the effort, trying to get it all under control in the next month or so. It includes removal of Amur Maple, Chokecherry and Sumac! There's a willow too that will just have to wait for another time. Then there's the creeping invasive groundcover and a few lollipop shaped trees. Lots of stone and rock work...Also convincing DH! But he's actually pretty easy going about these things and a ball of energy once he gets moving. These days he works extra hard too so that DD doesn't overdo things. She told me last night she's going canoing by herself tonight...:( Lifting canoes is taking it easy? Sunday she visits a nursery with a friend, list in hand. She also has a landscaper friend with a discount! We all need a few of those!

Serious frost expected here tonight! How to cover 200 clematis?

Trying to convince DH to leave for the nursery now. He wants breakfast first. How unnecessary!

Enjoy your weekend one and all! I'm waiting for photos of Deanne's clematis....;-)

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good morning! I know I am hopelessly behind here, things have just been crazy lately - not enough time to myself. The weather is wonderful today, nice and cool. The warmer weather we had was nice, but I'm just not ready for summer yet.

Good thoughts to all those with health woes still, hope there is some healing and wellness coming soon for all!

Mary and 'bug, my sympathies on the loss of your good friends. I hope your good memories (like those of the Russian Tea Room) will put a smile on your faces in time.

Sue, I remember going on the Mt Washington as a kid - it is a nice trip. How cool that you were married on board! Did the skipper perform the ceremony? We vacationed at Newfound Lake a few times when I was 5 or 6.

Here are some pics of the new path, they really did a great job. Here is the before:

You can see the ledge to the left, and further down to the right of the path is the top of what turned out to be a very large rock. I was at work when they dug it out with machines, but they told me it was around 3' in diameter. I asked them what they did with it; they took it to use on another job - I guess some people pay money for rocks...

Here is the finished project:

Overall we are very happy with it! (pay no attention to the mess near the shed please!) I plan to amend the soil in the raised bed, then add some shade plants. Between the steps and the wall there is a planting area, approx. 4x4 and pretty shady. I'd like to put a shrub there, but I'm not sure what. We're also going to put lattice around the steps and the edge of the deck to clean it up. The transition between the path and the driveway is a bit rough; the tree he wanted us to remove is just to the right. The tree has buckled the driveway, so it chipped away a bit when they excavated for the path. Possibly tree removal and a new driveway for next year, if the shed doesn't fall down first. I'd also like to move the electric meter, but DH says that is impractical. Any ideas for camouflage?

Lauren, I am interested in hearing more about your home schooling. I admire your decision. I considered it for about 2 seconds, but I really don't think I have the patience for it. I try to stay on top of what my kids are learning in school, and supplement where I can. Both my kids are ready now for my Columbus Day speech about how Columbus did not "discover" America, that there were already Native Americans here and they were getting along perfectly fine without him!

Anyway, I can't spend any more time inside - DH is gone for the morning to a science lecture with my mother, so I am headed outdoors! I have some new daylilies to plant, my first of the 'Candy' series. ('Orchid Candy', 'Elegant Candy', 'Huckleberry Candy' and 'Dewberry Candy') Why am I fascinated with plants named after food?! I also have some white siberian iris and aster 'Purple Dome' to divide - Chelone, Deanne, anyone??

Chelone, it must be hard to lose those trees, but think of how nice that garage will be next winter! If is it possible to save some of the trout lilies in the path of your project, I'd be able to give them a good home.

Well, I'm out of this chair and off to the garden! Enjoy the day all!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

OK Sue, I get it now...Sheesh, slow to wake up today I guess.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi yall. Brief drive-by. Were racing to get 5 yds of compost down, followed by 5 yds. Of mulch and I have a pot ghetto to get planted, stuff to move, etc., this week before we leave for a weeks vacation! Still have the fatigue and nasal drip, but am improving daily.
Oh, and I get to do Mothers Day dinner for 14 tomorrow. Itll be a cold supper buffet everyone can take outside on the deck or not. So I have a lot of stuff to do today.

I visited a favorite nursery haunt Wed. and they advised that the boxwood I just planted as a hedgerow at my back border, will probably suffer winter windburn there (even if I cover them) and will die. Altho it doesnt say that on any tag Ive read or anywhere else Ive researched, I believe her b/c I keep trying azaleas out there and thats what happens to them. She said SW wind exposure and winter sunburn is the worst. After tossing about pros and cons of various plants for a hedgerow across the back (no one had a solution at GW Shrubs and Trees), about the best is the common dwarf burning bush - Euonymus alatus 'Compactus. Or tough as nails Yew". I think Ill go with the latter. I can trim them so as to not lose our view yet theyre dense enough to provide protection from the wind. Altho boring and green, I can under plant them.

We talked about various hydrangeas and she seems to think my "Lady in Red wont bloom here. Its leafing out and I hope shes wrong. But a miracle happened. I looked at all their nursery stock and didnt bring a thing home! I thot they were a bit expensive and decided to check out prices elsewhere, but might go back for Deutzia Chardonnay Pearl.

At another nursery yesterday, I bot my Mom a Blushing Bride Hydrangea, my DS, DD and DN a Double Red "KnockOut" and a Lemon Daddy Hydrangea for me. I also bot misc. replacement perennials.

Ill stop back when I can. Thinking of yall and hope you Mothers have a great holiday. (Hm, thatt doesnt sound good, does it?! :-)


RE: Idyll #317 A story for you

Sharing a story I got in this am's email, Cute.


Never bring outdoor plants into the house. Here's why...

A couple in Sweetwater, Texas, had a lot of potted plants which they kept outside on their deck. During a recent cold spell, the wife was bringing a lot of them indoors to protect them from a possible freeze.

Did you know that Garden Grass Snakes also known as Garter Snakes (Thamnophissirtalis)can be dangerous? Yes, grass snakes, not rattlesnakes.

What happened was that a little green garden grass snake was hidden in one of the plants and when it had warmed up, it slithered out and the woman saw it go under the sofa. She let out a very loud scream! The husband (who was taking a shower at the time) ran out into the living room naked to see what the problem was. She told him there was a snake under the sofa.

He got down on the floor on his hands and knees to look for it.. About that time the family dog came and cold-nosed him on the behind. He thought the snake had bitten him, so he screamed and fell over on the floor. His wife thought he was having a heart attack, so she covered him up, told him to lie still and called 9-1-1.

The attendants rushed in, wouldn't listen to the man's protests and loaded him onto the stretcher and started carrying him out. Just at that time the snake came out from under the sofa. The Emergency Medical Technician saw it and dropped his end of the stretcher. That's when the man broke his leg and why he is still in the hospital.

The wife still had the problem of the snake in the house, so she called on a neighbor man. He volunteered to capture the snake. He armed himself with a rolled-up newspaper and began poking under the couch, but found nothing. Soon he decided the snake was gone and told the woman, who sat down on the sofa in relief.

But while relaxing, her hand dangled in between the cushions, where she felt the snake wriggling around. She screamed and fainted. The startled snake rushed back under the sofa. The neighbor man, seeing her lying there passed out, tried to use CPR to revive her.

The neighbor's wife, who had just returned from shopping at the grocery store, saw her husband's mouth on the woman's mouth and slammed her husband in the back of the head with a bag of canned goods, knocking him out and cutting his scalp to a point where it needed stitches.

The noise woke the woman from her dead faint and she saw her neighbor lying on the floor with his wife bending over him, so she assumed that he had been bitten by the snake. She went to the kitchen and got a small bottle of whiskey, and began pouring it down the man's throat.

By now the police had arrived. They saw the unconscious man, smelled the whiskey, and assumed that a drunken fight had occurred. They were about to arrest them all, when the women tried to explain how it all happened over a little green snake. The police called an ambulance, which took away the neighbor and his sobbing wife. The little snake again crawled out from under the sofa. One of the policemen drew his gun and fired at it.

He missed the snake and hit the leg of the end table. The table fell over and the lamp on it shattered and as the bulb broke it started a fire in the drapes. The other policeman tried to beat out the flames, and fell through the window into the yard on top of the family dog who, startled, jumped out and raced into the street, where
an oncoming car swerved to avoid it and smashed into the parked police car.

Meanwhile, the burning drapes, were seen by the neighbors who called the fire department. The firemen started raising the fire truck ladder when they were halfway down the street. The rising ladder tore out the overhead wires and put out the electricity and disconnected the telephones in a ten-square city block area (but they did get the house fire out).

Time passed! Both the husband and the neighbor man were discharged from the hospital,the house was repaired,the dog came home,the police acquired a new car, nd all was right with their world.

A year later the same couple was watching TV and the weatherman announced a cold snap for that night. The wife asked her husband if he thought they ought to bring in their plants for the night.

. . . And that's when he shot her.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Wow!, Wendy that walkway and raised bed look fabulous! what a difference, you must be tickled pink with it. I sure would be. I know exactly what you mean about the utility meter... aren't they just the homeliest things? but you have to have them. Taking down trees isn't an inexpensive proposition :/ , but when they are not doing well or are demonstrating destructive tendancies it's time. I laughed at your comment about the shed falling down; it's the same thing here, you plan and save for a "project" and then something more important fails and has to be addressed. I have tons of Trout lilies, if you want some sing right out!

The smashed turtle disturbed me greatly; the helpmeet stated it perfectly, "how the hell do you hit a turtle? it's not as though they dart out in front of your car!". The traffic on the road is going to be brutal this weekend, with the holiday and beautiful weather. Swell. Maybe I ought to garden naked and create a sensation... (I'd need a dip in a vat of sunscreen).

Where do dandilions come from? we have been digging them diligently and they just keep on showing up. Is there a dandilion gremlin that pops 'em in while we sleep?

Last night was beautiful here, warm and NO bugs. The helpmeet called me out after dark and told me take my shoes off. We walked around in the dewy grass; it was cold at first, but they our feet adjusted and it was great, the lawn and the ground was so soft underfoot. You forget those things over the winter.

I took the screen to the hardware store for repair, cats and fibreglass screen are a poor mix. I'm trying a new type of screen which is actually a product I know well from work. It's called Textilene, the guy assured me it will be impenetrable. We'll soon know.

I very much enjoyed the story Mary shared with us about her departed friend. It's things like that become more important over time.

I've been to the banks, paid the bills and sent them off, dealt with the returnables, the roached screen for the slider, picked up a new pair of gloves some Lily Leaf beetle killer, some fertilizer, and some amendments... time to head on out and yank some more dandilions!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Happy preMother's day to you moms...and grandMoms-to-be: ) How exciting for you Drema! Good to hear from you...I did smile about you tackling your yard-back to the grind,

So sorry to hear of you losing your friend,'Bug-sorry too that I seem to be finding out these things way past the fact lately-life seems to be going so quickly for me anymore...I miss having the choice to do whatever I want: )

Mary-you really have had so many premature losses among your friends-too many it seems for such a young person!-I hope you are managing OK. I hope soon you will feel comforted by the wonderful memories of your lost friends-I imagine you ache right now.

Chelone-I imagine your BP is running on the high side right about now as you've been having trees removed and all- I know I felt that way when we had our latest tree removed and I never imagined I would be so frazzled by what they tree guys 'might' damage.My heart was in my throat when I saw them trudge right across my emerging astilbe clumps and jack in the pulpit points peeking out of the soil. It happened so fast that the words wouldn't have gotten to their ears fast enough unless of course I let out a blood curtling scream...nope,still not fast enough lol.

Michelle-how are the peas doing? Mine seem to be climbing rather slow but they are about 12 inches high right now. I LOVE asparagus-neat that you go hunting for yours. My dad used to grow it in his garden and I really should try's always the deer strategy that stops me from growing veggies. I'm quite proud that both my boys love asparagus since it does have a distinct flavor-if I add butter and lemon or lime juice they devour it.

Loving the pics from Deanne,'Bug,Kath,Wendy(*Beautiful* walkway!!!!)I appreciate them all so much since I've had little time to post pics let alone take them: ( My irises are starting to bloom. I bought a dicentra spectib. and I am in love with the little heart flowers. It has been a wonderful season for the native ginger plants-tons of flowers on them. It's interesting that while we had such a harsh late winter many plants look phenominal-nature is so peculiar. My peonies that were bent over with that last freeze are standing tall and full of large buds...we need rain now though.

Thoughts to Cynthia-I have been thinking often of how Monty is and you too.

Saucy hang in there.

This is so brief-I have tons I want to say-but I need to get ready to go shopping for M-day gifts.

Have a happy weekend.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Brief here too I'm sorry to say.

BUT this morning's nursery jaunt was especially nice.
Ever heard of Phyteuma nigra? New to me and I'm in love! The photo isn't great...but you get the idea. I believe Garden's North sells the seed if people like Cynthia are so inclined. I got other stuff too, but with frost tonight, I need to go plan protection for the farm. Maybe a geodesic dome?

Here is a link that might be useful: Phyteuma nigra

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Well I'm in for a break. I mowed the lawns for the first time this year and had to use "Meg" (named for the helpmeet's mother), my BIL's mower as our's was late getting into the shop for some TLC. I like my mower better; easier to adjust the height of the mowing deck and the handles are more comfortable to use. I'd forgotten how nice a newly mown lawn smells.

I planted the clematis (had to reset it 3 times, 'bug, before deciding to use a ruler... duh!), yanked out an Echinacea that has never really pleased me and replaced it with a Japanese iris that I hope will appreciate the sunnier location, I was hoping for something that would flower more mid-summer, but am determined to use what I have to better advantage before buying more). I moved a few other things around in that bed, too. I need to do a little scritchy-scratchy to overturn the little weeds and then mulch it (tomorrow). I have decided to screw the handpicking of Lily Leaf beetles. I went right for the spray today, having squished 3 in the past couple of days and having NO desire to jackass around with the destructive little things. I need to scratch some bulb food into the soil and water it in, too (tomorrow). Still to do today is tie up the new clematis, the "Polish Spirit", and a few stragglers on another, "Daniel Deronda/o". I also promise to get some "distance shots" for Michelle. (if I show you mine will you show me your's?).

I drove through town this morning on my "rounds" and was just bowled over by what a pretty community this is! I am so proud of my town and the way so many work so very hard to keep it pretty. The garden club works very hard to beautify corners at intersections and the town has made a point to plant medians with street trees, the effort really shows.

I meant to tell you about the quantity of roots left behind in the hole that formerly contained the Eupatorium... . I'm thankful I moved it when I did, after reading your replies! I put the clematis in that hole, but before doing so used the fork to loosen everything up before digging the planting hole. I pulled out so many roots! it was obviously a very happy camper there. Its new home is in a "wilder neighborhood", next to the pond. I don't care what it does there, but it was too much plant for the terrace garden... . Catastrophe averted (I think).

Time to go hunt up some "strang" (string) and get about trussin' up the clematis! Rex will be thrilled, and the cats have had a blast stalking me and then being "cute".

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Monty has gained weight. Who couldn't on 2400 calories a day? I noticed it in the last few days, his hip bones no longer rise up like saucers on their sides. Thanks for all of your good thoughts for us here at 'Healthcare for Hounnds.' Katie's personality is coming back now and she proves it by rooing to me at 4:30 in the morning with a helicopter tail and a bunch of air snaps between choruses. I have a zero tolerance barking policy but love a melodious rooooooooroooooorooo. Hope everyone elses puppers and kitties are holding their own for now.

It was fun to read that Michelle has a Sutherland Gold because she saw it in Deanne's garden. Deanne saw it my garden. I saw it Home Depot. They get huge if you let them Michelle. I chopped one down last week(in too much shade) to a 5 inch stump because it was getting leggy there. The bottom branches seem to die off. It was 12 feet high before the surgery. This morning, I decided to dig the remains and move it to a sunnier spot. The area where I planted it originally has oddly sandy soil, so easy digging, but the roots (thick as two thumbs) were growing out in three directions just an inch below the surface. The longest one over 5 feet long! I chopped each root to three feet so that I could plant it in it's new spot more easily. It looked like an octopus on land.

Nature deprived as I am so close to civilization, I stood for 15 minutes one day this week watching a flock of huge birds on the neighbor's unmown acre. They were probably turkey vultures not welcome at GB's :-) Too far away to tell for sure, but I'm impressed by any large wingspan. There are some hawks around, but there were too many of these big mamas to be hawks. I didn't want to go in for binoculars as they would have left before I came back, right?

Kathy, your clematis looks like Fireworks (or maybe Dr.Ruppel). I was looking at both this week trying to make a decision on what to plant for the obelisk where the Dicentra scandens died. At least I thought it died this very cold winter. Now I think I see one vine coming up, but could be one of those ubiquitous ground strawberries. Worst weed on my property after poke.

I got the red geraniums moved from old windowboxes to new this morning. I ordered the Gardener's Supply self watering ones this winter. Not sure how well those will work with geraniums (pelargoniums) which like to be dry.

I need to bite the bullet and get the vacumm cleaner into a repair shop TODAY. Spent too much time looking for a place that had a working phone number this week. It's 20 miles away. Makes me want to just buy a new one.

Wendy, the path and wall look great. You must be very pleased! Loving your gorgeous photos as always Deanne. I haven't read much, just skimmed and will be back with a drink later to read details. Just wanted to say 'hi' as it's been a week since I dropped in.

Best to all, Cynthia

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

I agree with everyone else, Wendy, that path is great! And how fun to have a new shade garden ready for planting. How about a tall shade plant for the meter - just so you wouldn't see it from the drive, but one that wouldn't obstruct the meter man from his job.

I got my real mother's day present today - my kids joined me outside for cleaning up and mowing the yard and we also put in a new garden which is screaming for plants! They didn't even suspect that I was happier about today than I will be about a gift :) Jake enjoys mowing the lawn at this age and I enjoy the help! Sarah planted up an urn that stays out from hose reach all summer, but looks good filled with portulaca.

I am still waiting on the great turtle trek from the pond to my garden to lay their eggs! It should be any time now.

Waiting on the chartreuse frogs that litter the lawn, too. Oh the joys of spring/summer.

Nick's fishing trip was fruitless. They boarded the vessel at 4am, went out to catch bait and then spent the rest of the afternoon floating around catching nothing! I still hold the record in our house - I caught a sculpin (rock fish) and came home with maybe a quarter of pound of meat! Barely enough for the both of us :)

Babs, nice to see your name :) You too, Cynthia.

I'm really having a rough time of things today. I am going to put my feet in the soaker/massager and try to make my toes sandal ready. Might need some fake tanner for the legs before I'm shorts ready :)


PS - where is IU4, did someone say PA?

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hello all.

I've been meaning to post and trying to catch up on reading. Finally made it through the parts I was behind! I must resolve not to get behind with reading any more.

We've had quite a shock here, which is part of the reason I've not posted much. DH has been in pain since Easter. He thought it was back or any number of things, but went on too long so he went to his doctor. Doctor recommended a CT scan and he got the results this past Friday afternoon. Seems he has a rare disease. He'll be in pain the rest of his life, there is no cure and very little to be done except to medicate with pain meds and steroids. There is an awful lot we don't know yet. Needless to say life as we know it has changed drastically in the last couple of days.

At this point I'm trying very hard to stay positive about the whole thing. Right now I can't get my mind OFF it, and I know that will pass in time. It's a bit overwhelming to think about. He's also trying to be positive but underneath I know he has thoughts eating at him also.

We are going out to lunch for Mother's Day. I hope all of you have a lovely day with family so dear. I have a lot of things I want to comment on but I will have to post on those when my thoughts are not so jumbled.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Suzy, positive vibes being sent your way. Already your attitude seems wonderful. After the shock settles, I think that information and facts will be your best help, but perhaps diet and exercise will also be of help...for both of you! Meditation too works for many. Know that my thoughts are with you! Looking forward to updates.

OY!!!!! Beautiful though!

Thought you'd seen everything? Well odd though the idea was to me, I think these are brilliant! Make sure you scroll down to the bottom of the page too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Amazing!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

I don't wonder your thoughts are jumbled, Suzy! that's a pretty big load to have to shoulder. As more information and facts come to light, you will be better able to form a "game plan" to deal with this. Pain management has come a long way and as 'bug pointed out some of the less "traditional" methods are quite effective. Acupuncture and theraputic massage has helped my boss a great deal with rheumatoid arthritis. Hang tough!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good sunny Moms Day morning all,

A gorgeous, cool, perfect gardening day is on tap here today and I intend to use every scrap of sunshine available to try to catch up with stuff that is normally done by now. The good news is that Ive finally ruled out a leak in the large lower pond and figured out that the tubing from the pump to the upper pond is leaking, still a pain but less of a pain than having to replace the large pond shell. Im still in the process of removing ALL the rocks from around all the ponds. You can imagine what a pain in the neck that is going to be! But Im determined to get the darned thing functioning without leaks this year.

Yesterday Doug and I went to his sister's and picked up a trailer load of beautifully composted horse manure. Woohoo!!!!! She's had horses for fifteen years and this load was from the first manure pile she started fifteen years ago! Black gold! They have an enormous pile of composted manure and I can have it all. I just have to get up there and pick it up. Only another gardener could appreciate how exciting it is to get a trailer load of well composted manure, LOL.

I finally brought up all the plants from under the lights and they are all outside on the patio hardening off. Heres a pic of about half the coleus babies. So far they seem to be OK on the patio and that is now my new official hardening off location. Ive always burned the heck out of them in previous years by putting them in sun too soon. They only get a brief bit of direct sunlight a day there and thats working out fine. Now the weather gurus are saying we might get temps to 34 tonight so I'm going to pull all the coleus into the dining room, Oh well, C'est la vie.

I spent a bit of time playing with the plants now that they are all outside and here is my first official combination for the season. Ill get it potted up today, everything except for the Shadowdancer Marcia fuchsia was overwintered under the lights. The neat thing about this is the Iresine came from Sues, (I got some cuttings from Monique too but this one came from Sues) the Euphorbia Diamond Frost came from Monique and Les, the frilled coleus on the lower left came from Wendy and the Alternanthera Red Threads came from Sue. How cool is that?

Suzy, so sorry to hear about your DH. (((Hugs))) to you and your family. As Chelone said, "Pain management has come a long way". I hope you find an effective treatment soon.

Bug!!!! You are too much, where do you find these things??? Those urinals are too beautiful to put in a bathroom!

Hi Saucy, sounds like your family gave you the best Moms day present they could. Help outside and a new garden would be at the top of my list of things that are meaningful to me. ~~ Yes indeed IU4 will be in PA this year. Are you going to be able to join us I hope?

Cynthia, yes indeed, you started the Sutherland Gold rage here on the Idylls and Im so glad you did. I just love mine! Glad to hear that some branch die off seems to be the norm with this shrub. I had a large, lower branch die this spring and was worried that the whole plant would go.~~ Glad to hear that the puppies are doing better! Rahjii is all healed up and back to his old bratty self. It was pretty sad yesterday, he leapt up a tree to climb as he usually does and he fell out of the tree because of the missing sharp ends of his claws. Made me angry all over again. He of course dropped gracefully to the ground and began having a wash like it was his intention to fall out of the tree.

HI Babs!!! How are you doing with the deer damage in the gardens this year and how is your MIL doing? Been thinking of you.

Honey, ROTFLOL!!!! That story is way too funny! I had to read it to Doug and he had a good laugh as well. ~~ I decided to buy a tough as nails Yew yesterday for a problem area in the shade that I absolutely must have a screening plant for. Ive tried several things and nothing has survived there so a Yew it will be.

Wendy, that path is gorgeous and the garden marvelous!!! You must be itching to plant that new bed.

Sue looking forward to seeing your first container of the season. Hope you can zip in here later today.

Mary, love the story about the Russian Tea Room! How special to have that memory.

Kathy, LOVE the container, is that Lime Rickey and the Fuchsia, is that a Shadowdancer? Its already lovely and I know it will be gorgeous when filled in. ~~ that Sally Holmes combo made me twinge with envy. I had a huge Sally Holmes but it died in a bad winter we had several years ago. I had it growing with a Ville de Lyon clematis and the combination was delicious! ~~ Sorry I cant help with the clem ID but its a beauty. ~~ MyLittle Joe gets about six feet tall. ~~ That tag and baggie idea is terrific, you should send that into Fine Gardening.

V. congratulations to your DS! You must be so pleased! ~~ How great that the fotergilla is OK, Mine just leafed out but there is only one flower on it this year. Bummer!

OK here are a couple vignettes in the gardens that Im quite fond of so thought Id share them

This B. Jack Frost is a small piece that came off the division from Sues plant. I tucked it into a holding bed and Im so happy I decided to keep the little piece that fell off. It has turned into a lovely specimen. The main plant is the one that died off last winter. The blue iris came from another gardening friend and I just love it that these two spring beauties bloom at the same time.

And last but not least, this Polemonium was given to me by Monique and Les last summer and Eileen sent me the iris a couple years ago when she sent the Molly. I didnt realize it would make such a pretty combination Thanks to you both!

And last but not least, I thought youd all get a kick out of this, I went to a roadside nursery yesterday looking for a large specimen of Swingtime as mine are a ways off from blooming and I wanted something for my large urn now, anyway they didnt have a single fuchsia out and when I asked the fellow if he had any he said in a huff, "Well as you know, fuchsias are extremely sensitive to any cold so we wont put any out for another couple weeks." Hmmm. He had flats and flats of large $7.00 coleus out. I wanted to tell him that fuchsia were actually quite hardy and a little cold wont hurt them a bit they just cant take a frost but his coleus are real warmth lovers and if he was going to keep anything in coleus should be it. I just bit my tongue and kept my mouth shut, whats the point?

Have a great day everyone!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Yeah, 'bug, I want to know how you found that website, too. I showed them to the helpmeet and he thought they were just great; but true to his teutonic heritage he was concered that placed in a restaurant or bar setting an inebriated fellow might inadvertently spracy the wall... . I think the chambered Nautilus is my favorite, with the other shell a close second. Dontcha just love that the world is so full of creative people?

Deanne, I love the combinations you posted, are your Iris blooming already or is that shot from last year? I know what you mean about faulty "advice"... the sweet young thing at the nursery assured me the clematis I purchased really wanted to be planted higher than it was growing in the pot! I haven't purchased ANY annuals yet, the thought of dragging them in and out of the house wears me right out... you are definitely "hard core".

Cynthia, I want to know what you're feeding the Monty-man to get 2400 calories into him. You must be relieved to see him filling out; how old is he and what is his prognosis (if you can talk about it)? I laughed at the roooorooo... , Rex will do that if I give him the raised eyebrow and the devil laugh. :) He has a truly arresting bark, too; but that's valued in working breeds and he's pretty good about obliging me when I say, "Quiet", or "Cool it, willya?". Good to know Katie is returning to her usual self. Tell me, how is Dannie doing in her obedience class; are you noticing an increase in her confidence?

What fun it is to see how others have added plants recommended by Idyllettes! I think that's just great and many of the plants are things I've never heard of... most of the stuff here is pretty "basic" and my goal this year is to simply reorganize it for greater effect. And arrive at solutions to gaps in bloom throughout the season. You guys amaze me with you ingenuity.

I've begun noting the sunlight patterns where the garage will go. At 8 AM the area is shaded, by 9 AM it's in full sun. The wildcard will be the height of the garage and what that will do the light on the east side of it. Rex has decided he very muchs like hanging out on Sanitary Ridge now. He can bask in the sun and the loss of the trees provides him with an obstructed view of the road and any potential marauders to his "territory". The cats, however, are less than thrilled the loss of "jungle".

I loved Saucy's Mother's Day gift. Sounds as though you had a lovely day. Keep us posted on the turtle trek; and what are the little green jobs on your lawn? I get the brown ones with the dark "mascara", but only in the late fall. Interesting.

Nice to see Babs., too. It's hard to keep up here when you're busy with LIFE, isn't it? I've wondered about your MIL, too and how she's doing. I have Dicentra spectabilis all over the place here. They are so pretty, aren't they? My favorites are the white ones though they're not nearly as vigorous. They make me smile.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

This guy I've exchange emails with posted it on the GB forum. As I said there, it reminds me of Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party, a 70's display of feminist art that surely reveals my age....

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Happy Mother's day to all! Whether you have skinkids or furkids or plant babies.

Suzy, yes the mind puts all it's energy into the important things at times of stress and hard to think of anything else. Don't know what your husband's disease is, but a year ago a friend learned that she had rheumatoid arthritis, a truly crippling disease (different than osteoarthritis). It was a very tough time. My warmest thoughts to you and your husband that his pain can be controlled and the farm can be managed.

Deanne what lovely and meaningful combinations of friends and plants you shared this morning :-)

Good observation on the D.spectabilis Chelone. In spite of the rampant self-seeding, I have exactly one white Dicentra, the rest red. I move the babies around every year since all of my gardens have shade, and wait a few years for bloom to find all of the babies are red. Perhaps the white ones are sterile.

I made it to the vacuum repair place yesterday and lucky me, it was just 2 tenths of a mile down the road from a huge nursery I rarely frequent. The nursery was so busy that they had police in the parking lot directing traffic. I thought I'd look for the clematis I need, so fought the crowds but found very limited selection in the clem department. I did pick up six salvia leucantha, an artichoke and a Sweet Million cherry tomato. The artichoke is for my humongous white urn on the landing step to back yard. I try something new there every year, and last year had a grass in it thinking it would survive the winter. Not.

Stopped at Home Depot for variegated plectranthus for the window boxes and found a pineapple plant! Looked like a great pot plant to me with spikey blue leaves, very agave looking :-) Picked up a few herbs too.

Babs, my heart sank when you told about tree people putting their feet on emerging astilbe and jack in the pulpit. I'm always in a panic when having anything done outdoors and with the fence crew in February showed them where to walk and tried to learn spanish overnight.

Saucy, it is good to see you posting again! The business sounds terrific and I expect it will be very successful. Loved the story about the hole in the roof and the need to establish yourself as a company that cares.

Kathy didn't do sign off with gorgeous garden photos last night. I wonder where she is?

It's a perfect 55F here this morning, and windows wide open for a while with crisp air pouring in. We finally got some rain. The earth has been cracking from drought, but I don't see puddles this morning, so we still need more. I ran soaker hoses in back yesterday and need to turn the water on in the front today. Lawn needs mowing again too :-(

Enjoy your day! Cynthia

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

A quick check in here, have your heard my 'Woohoos' and 'Ye-haws' of great delight!!!!! Well here is the deal, I finally, finally found the PERFECT way to winter over the dahlia tubers. Every single tuber of the hundreds of dahlia tubers I have, came through the winter PERFECT!!! I can hardly deal with it I'm so happy. They are all plump and have growing 'eyes'. Incredible! So here's the deal, after the frost killed off the top growth, I dug them up, washed them off with the jet on the hose, really well. Left them to dry out in the sun. Packed them no more than one large clump or two smaller clumps in plastic grocery bags with about a gallon of peat. Tied off the tops of the bags but there is still some air getting in because they aren't tied off tightly. Then I stored the bags in some very large rubbermaid type, plastic, under-bed storage boxes. These also don't seal airtight, they were cheap ones I got from Christmas Tree Shoppes. Anyway, I just stacked the boxes in the shelves in the basement and because I've been so busy with the birds all winter/spring I never potted them up. I just took them outside today and voila! I didn't even check them once the entire winter and not one of the tubers rotted or dried up. What I did different this year than in previous years is wash the tubers off with the hose instead of letting them dry off and then brushing all the excess soil off. When I washed them off I was able to make sure I got rid of any bad tubers or any wireworms that might be on the freshly dug tubers. I sometimes missed them when I just brushed off the dry soil. Also storing the bagged tubers in the plastic boxes kept them from drying out over the winter. Anyway, I was so excited that I thought I'd share that with you all.

So, now I have to run out and get those puppies planted in the freshly turned over, composted bed. What fun!

Chelone, those pics were taken yesterday and yes those little dwarf iris are blooming now. They bloom before the big bearded iris. I have four different kinds of them and they really are gems, are easy and multiply like crazy. Every gah-den should have some. LOL I'll throw in a couple when we meet for the Perovskia switch. ~~ LOL about 'hard-core' I'm either that our out of my mind. tehe.

Cynthia, What kind of plectranthus were you looking for? I've got a few varieties adn love them all. I've had a pineapple plant in the past and it was great fun and I agree a terrific scuptural plant to use in containers.

OK off to plant and move very big rocks

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Yes! Happy Mother's Day to all!

What a day I have had! My present (arranged by sneaky husband and children) was that I got to dig the perennials of my choice from my neighbor's perennial garden business! My new garden looks great now!

Other mothers might grimace and think "she had to dig her own plants" but I know you all will appreciate the fine mature plants that I got of my own choosing :)

And the kdis are helping me pot up the deck and get the furniture clean and ready for dinner tonight!

This is a great day!

Suzy, I hope you and your husband find more information soon. I always feel a comfort come over me when I have a plan in place.

Gotta go eat fast so I can get back outside.....


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Eating fast here too. Caesar salad with left over grilled chicken. One of my favorite things any time of the year. When I was digging about outside, I remembered that I hadn't even said: Welcome back Martie!!!! I can't figure out your new name though. All I come up with is Connecticut lavatory lover :-)

Deanne, excellent method for the Dahlias! That must have felt terrific to discover everything had made it through. I don't do Dahlias (need sun drat), but love the photos that you and Honey and others post of them in late summer. They're a wonderful plant.

The HD stop was just for plain old variegated plectranthus. I don't waste room in gh over-wintering that, but really love it trailing from the window boxes, and I use it under the brugs. Have 20 pots of 'good' (vertical) plectranthus from cuttings (types like hilliardiae red, mona lavender) that were in gh all winter, and a bunch of who knows what kind from Chiltern's mixed seed. Plectranthus have been a long time love for me. Probably because of all this durn shade.

Saucy, that's a great gift, you must have felt like a kid in a candy store. When you come back, tell us what you scored please??? I'm glad you're having a wonderful day with your family.

I've been trashing things in one of the back gardens to get things looking a little more orderly. The problem with growing from seed is that I just love to grow and and end up with stuffed gardens that turn into messy looking gardens. This is definitely my year to edit things.

Need to hit Sam's club for more potting soil, as I've been potting up Brugs and seed grown petunias (separately)all morning. I love the scent of petunias at night, and regardless of the dead-heading will always have a pot or three of them for the scent :-)

Back to it ~ Cynthia

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good afternoon

Happy Mothers Day one and all! I'm having a glorious one here - an early morning trip to the "Flower days" at the public market with two friends. I had a fantastic time picking up some unusual things at wonderful prices. They included a variegated sweet autumn sage and toffee colored grass. When I walked in the door David was set up with his guitar in the kitchen waiting to serenade me. Annie had written me a poem and tonight DH is cooking his grandmother's recipe of Beef Strogonoff. I had said no money on gifts and what I recieved were the very best kind of presents.
I've been playing in the garden all day. Annie has a musical practice and the boys played a round of golf together. I just came in for a quick cup of tea and read of the Idylls and hope to finish off some mulching before supper.

Suzy - the news about your DH is heartbreaking. That is my worst fear - that someone I love will be in pain and I will be unable to help them. You sound as though you are approaching things with the best possible outlook. I agree that there are many options to explore and I'm sure you will be a tremendous comfort and support. Please know we are all here if you need to talk things through, vent, share what is happening or simply talk about something unrelated. Here is a big hug (((((((Suzy)))))))

Well, my mulch pile calls


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

So no pots on the deck were planted but they were planned...things got hectic once Nick came home.

Okay Cynthia, here's my list:

Nepeta "six hills giant" (the cat has already laid on it)
Leontopodium alpinum "Edelweiss"
Platycodon grandiflora
Shasta Daisy "Alaska"
Bachelors Button
Peony of undetermined color
Delphinium - a large "blue" variety
Salvia Pratensis "pink delight"
Campanula "sarastro"
Papaver Atlanticum
Gallardia "burgandy"

As you can see, I had no rhyme or reason going into this...just dug and hoped for the best. I will rearrage when I can see the results. I also have a viburnum in there - my favorite shrub! Forgot the name already :)

Then I went to HD and acquired "Wisley TM Clematis". I bought this as an impulse....says it blooms blue/purple blooms from spring to fall....LOL...the PERFECT plant, huh?

From my neighbor I also got some bronze fennel for my pots on the deck as well as the usual suspects: sweet potato vine with heart shaped leaves in black and green, and annual salvia in pink.

Chelone, I tried to look up our little frogs for you. I think they are pretty common but ours seem to have a chartreuse green gene. It was explained to my by a somewhat expert that if a gene such as color runs in a small area, then eventually everyone (or every frog) becomes the same color. Make any sense?

I've just finished my first vodka and pomegranate....does it show?


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Saucy, you are particularly cute after vodka with pomegranite. :-)

I love your list. I'd add mine if I could remember everything... Here are some of my Mother's Day trip purchases:
- an unusual
- 3 epimediums
- a pinkish fern
- another dark sambucus
-*** a small Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum'***
- some deep blue woodland phlox

and more things I'll add when I remember!

No money left for groceries....Good thing asparagus is in season in our garden now.

See you tomorrow!

PS: Hey! It's 8:30 and still bright enough to see what I need to finish outdoors for a little while!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Nice lists! Saucy, you chose well, and I looked up that clem, it is a repeat bloomer and a gorgeous shade of blue. Good list from GB too. If that Acer 'Full Moon' isn't hardy enough for you, ship it here, I've wanted it forever! Mary, what is variegated sweet autumn sage? Sounds yummy. this is all I could find:

"Salvia greggii Rachel (Variegated Autumn Sage): A yellow variegated sport of Salvia greggii with white flowers. Destined to be rare or extinct. Named after Rachel Emrick because its blonde and odd."

Here's my boring list from a side trip to Lowe's after hitting Sam's club for potting soil.

1 Miss Kim Lilac (Late bloomer and foliage is neat and to the ground when mature. Stays small.)
2 Hosta Pizzaz
1 Hosta Frances Williams (have one in back, and this one is for the front.)
1 Clematis HF Young for the bare green obelisk. But now I want Saucy's clem!

The hosta are for a front bed I extended under an old red Japanese Maple last fall.

Back to my pina colada. What a lovely day!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Happy Mother's Day to all! Here's what I did today:

Please excuse the poor quality; since my good camera is currently in Rome (where it was 80 today) this photo was taken with DH's camera phone. Anyway, we put in our "moon garden" behind the wall of the firepit. There are three dwarf fothergillas and three Hydrangea Limelight, as well as a bunch of white-blooming annuals. Perennials to come later.

I did some speed-reading as I was scrolling down and need to tell 'bug that she's not all that old, as I went to see The Dinner Party when it was on display in Chicago. Very cool, and yes that bathroom fixture made me think of it also.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Extremely windy here and I hate wind. It also hit 90 again. The emerging new leaves dont like lots of wind and hot temps.

Suzy, sorry about your DHs disease, Im sure it is very disappointing for both of you. As others have said, I hope that he is able to manage the pain.

Deanne, Rahjiis fall from the tree and then acting like it was intended reminds me of Kenzie. She fell in the grass and while she was down she grabbed a June bug and stood back up and began examining it.

Another thing that she was up to was picking dandelions, she calls them her "fowers" and she is absolutely obsessed with finding them. I mentioned to DD that dandelions can stain clothing. Her reply was that I was the one to blame for Kenzies obsession with flowers. LOL

The card I got from her today reads:

The world is a big, pretty garden
Where families blossom and grow
And grandmas are butterflies,
Bringing big smiles and sunshine wherever they go!
Thanks for making my world
Such a fun and happy place!

Happy Mothers Day!
Love, Kenzie

Inside was a butterfly on a spring and she promptly told me that it was a "butterfly" In case I didnt know.

DH took me to the nursery and I got several coleus and a couple of pelargoniums. One I picked and one Rick picked. He went for flowers and I went for foliage. I also got a couple of Rex begonias. The one I had last year did so well in the house.

It sounds like Im not the only one who spent time at a nursery today. Im glad that everyone seemed to enjoy the day.


I'll leave you with a picture of the little sweetie in time out.

And something from my garden:

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi ho everyone ! The radio station is playing Suite Judy Blue Eyes, Its about 70 degrees inside and out. Happy M-day to those that participate. I dont really do M-day. For some reason I just find it very contrived , and cant really get into it..I told my children many years ago that I would prefer to just let Mothers Day slide by- no requirements on their part. Oddly this seems to be hard for them.

Mary, How I loved your story of the Russian Tea Room. Its been many years since I watched Dr Zhivago. Love those David Lean films.

Wendy, your path turned out great ! And such nice virgin planting area as a result.
I have been wanting to acquire some of the Spacecoast daylilies. Im waiting for my new ones this year too bloom-all have scapes . I go out and peer at them daily

Cynthia greeting from another ailing pet household. How nice that Monty is bulking up. I did a search at Chalk Hill, which is the source for my Clematis and I am thinking it is "Carnival"
I grew up with Irish Setters..they dont win any doggie IQ awards but they always had personality plus. We had one female named Regan ( not after Ronnie, but after one of King Lears daughters) and she was a rooo-er. We called her Roo-roo Regan. She was the sweetest thing. She died of senseless.

Suzy, what a challenge for you and DH..I hope you can find solutions that will help.

Deanne, what a display ! I cant imagine over wintering all that stuff.-but I bet you spent a lot less on buying coleus this spring than I did ! And yes, in the container is Shadowdancer Violette, but the Heuchera is Key Lime PieNice job on the Dahlias-we dont have to dig ours up here. The issue we have is not cold, but instead standing water. I had to replace many this winter because of our heavy rains the previous year.

Chelone, I now use a push mower on what is left of my lawn.. Mowing tasks are extremely brief. The fragrance is quite grand, but now I also enjoy the whirr of the push mower blades, a sound from my childhood when many people did not have power mowers.

Time to turn in for me- enjoying all the pics and spring stories !

Kathy in Napa

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Good morning to my far flung gahdenin' buddies. I was all tuckered out yesterday and I didn't do very much hard physical labor; fat and out of shape, I suppose. I gave all the terrace beds a shot of fertilizer, scratched bulb food over the lilies (need to water it in today), AND managed to get 3 of the 4 peonies staked! I loathe doing that particular chore and therefore tend to postpone it... only to find myself racing against predicted heavy rains to keep them from eating mud. (I have to deal with the poppies next...). I'm wondering about what to lift and divide today?

I am growing increasingly envious of the posted plant lists. :/ . Saucy, I can't imagine a more perfect gift for you! what a lovely and touching gesture from your family; that's what it's supposed to be all about. I am not familiar with Leontopodium alpina, maybe you'll post a shot of it sometime? And very cool about the lime green frogs... imagine that your very own "regional amphibian"... maybe they could put a picture of it on the town signs?

Michelle, Kenzie looks less that thrilled with her position in the photo above. What was the transgression? trampling your "fowers"? ;) When do I get to see some distance shots of your gardens? I took some more shots for you yesterday, but will wait until the camera is full before posting them. They include the devastation on the north side of the house and the Sanitary Ridge garden.

V., I can't wait to see your moon garden mature throughout the season. I believe it was you who mentioned a natural swimming pool some (few hundred!) posts back? what's up with that?

Cynthia, my white Dicentra spectabilis do reseed. I have always had then in the front beds here and every year there are several volunteers, generally coming up in between the rocks that edge the bed (for ease of transplanting). But they don't reseed nearly as ramplantly as the pink ones, nor do they ever achieve the size. My "Frances Williams" reseeds like crazy, too. Sadly, the seedlings never sport the lovely varigated leaves of mama... .

I meant to tell Kathy that I'm very impressed with her ziplock bag idea for retaining the name tags for her plants. Those tags are perpetually heaved out of the ground here in the winter, they fade, and become brittle and I am left without really knowing exactly what something is years later. You should submit that one! And my congratulations to Deanne (the horder) on the successful Dahlia technique. Don't you just LOVE it when you come up with simple, successful solution to something?

Missing Eden, Taryn, T, and can't wait to hear what Martie was up to in "the Park" over the weekend. Time to fold laundry and do the dishes now.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

No time for real catch-up for me yet today, but I seem to recall seeing that the first of many May birthdays has hit us today, hasnt it?

Happy Birthday, T -- hope you're playing & planting in your curvey beds:


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll - #2

ok, so now I figured out Im 2 days early to wish T a birthday-- I better stop the turbo skims & look at typos! LOL.... well, nothing like working up to grand displays....
lunch will be spent trying to really read here - I see lots of great pics tooo.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

I'm on vacation! I think Sunday was sweeter because I knew I wouldn't work today. Well I worked for two hours this morning and will do so everyday but Friday, just makes it easier when I return if I can keep a hand in and avoid any wrong turns made while I'm out.

And it is a gorgeous morning here still in the 50s so far. Michelle is that an Angelique tulip against ground phlox? Beautiful photo! And love the devil child pose :-)

Kathy, I love a push mower, but still too much grass here for that. Too many gardens too. Both are work I love to do, but in the spring with everything needs doing, I want some of the heavy equipment T, the not-quite-yet-birthday-girl has. Hey Cindy, it was a good reminder to stand back for the flood of birthdays in the next few weeks, but you don't need an excuse to post a pretty photo. Love the color of your tulips!

V, I thought there was a mist on the moor, not a bad camera. Fothergilla and Hydrangea limelight very nice choices! I have 3 of the limelight in my front garden and they do well in my mostly shade, so should be stunning in the full sun position you've given them.

Yes where is Eden? Where is T? Taryn is more like a cameo visitor lately, so I worry less about her. Eden, thinking good thoughts for you, your mum, and your daughter. T is likely surrounded by grandchildren and Elk :-)

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Big disappointment garden friends canceled on me..for very good reasons, but I was hoping we could work together on removing spreading raspberries, a job I can't manage alone.

Oh well, I'll share a few recent acquisitions.
Epimedium Saxton's Purple.

Phyteuma nigrum with twisty stems

Lamium Orvala

Asarum splendens

Pink Tiarella

Burgundy Lace (Japanese Painted Fern)

Veratrum nigrum -should grow a tall dark spike

Yes, T's birthday comes I learned by jumping the gun last month! Also Yeona's is soon?

It is cold here. I even turned up the heat. Thunderstorms predicted, and a tough day at work (known as "the shoe factory" here) for DH.
DD phoned last night to share all the new plants she bought for her many projects. She did WELL! Jack Frost, hostas, Alaskan ferns, Siberian iris, Festuca glauca 'Elijah Blue', a dwarf cedar, giant solomon's seal, a cimicifuga, etc etc etc!!! (LMLD..Like mother, like daughter)

Michelle, I remember feeling insulted if someone tried to take my photo when I was in tears...decades ago. Recently we bought a book for DGS, about a child during "time out". I really love that book! Can't remember the title now, but it was in poem form. Adorable photo!

Time to get going here...

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Trying to play catch up here lots was going on obviously I worked really hard for 2 days in the gahdens that was my Mothers Day present to myself (I postponed DDs offer of dinner to next weekend) so I could avail myself of the glorious weather we had here in VA). Got lots done & the roses, iris, peonies, are all starting to pop my very favorite time of year. This next week should be fantastic esp. after Tuesday when we have a 1-day burst of 80s and then back to 60s and 70s. This is the coolest May I recall in recent years, but Im not complaining I think overall, the plants and I both enjoy it!

First off, SuzyIm so sorry to hear about your DHs diagnosis to echo other Idyllers, I hope you can find some helpful cutting-edge info re pain management possibilities and alternate treatments. The power of the internet is truly an amazing thing you may find there is someplace doing some sort of great research on the disease that could be helpful. I hope you can maintain your good attitudes and a positive outlook, hard as it may be.

Wendy I love that new path & raised bed glorious Id be so tempted to try some hard to keep Mediterranean type plants but it sounds like not much sun there, uh? Im sure youll find lots of cool things to plant just watching photos here.

Mary what wonderful memory youve got of that relationship something to comfort you in this sad time. Its nice to know you had such fun! I hope those memories give you solace & offer a wee bit of consolation to fall back upon.

Michelle love that time-out shot its hard not to laugh at them when they look so adorable but "bad" isnt it? What a treasure!

Kathy I love that combo of Eden (glorious looking rose) and Sally. Superific!!! Sounds like youve got some interesting travel coming up Im sooo envious of vacation to Portland hopefully to see some luscious gardens while youre there. What a gardening Mecca.

Deanne its truly amazing all those cuttings you overwintered so well & look so lush and fantastic!! Its really a shame you dont have room for a full greenhouse I cant imagine the glories youd keep if you had that type of operation! The container is stunning as usual the first of many we are going to be graced with I hope? I confess I have only a few things so far to put in containers I resisted the urge to go out yesterday & start hunting for things I figured the places would be over-run w/ customers for M-day event. I postponed it til next weekend but I am itching to do some now Ive got most other things "under control" for the moment in the larger beds.

I love the lists of things people have put here.

Gardenbug wow that is a cool plant. And your DD is obviously blooming like her Mom w/ all the zeal & enthusiasm shes putting forth for her new garden and in her condition whew I just remember being terribly tired for the last couple of months & no energy and no sleeping thru the nite how she even contemplates things like canoeing and re-doing landscaping is truly impressive and a testament to her condition and stamina just like her Mom obviously.

Cynthia 6 plants of salvia leucantha wow, you must have an impressive place for that number as I imagine they get pretty large here in this area? Ive thought about trying to add to my place somewhere its such a beautiful salvia, Id love to see it be hardy here (but I guess if I can get a couple of dahlias to overwinter in the ground, it might be worth a shot to see what of these would). They are such a late, great bloomer. I look forward to seeing it in your gardens heres hoping youre getting a new camera too very soon! We miss seeing them and the furbies too. Im glad both your chicks are doing better.

V that is indeed a sin that your camera is better traveled it should be rectified a.s.a.p! However, its amazing what camera phones will do in a pinch I love what a sanctuary youre making of the firepit. Thats going to be just lovely this summer. Nice to see you posting photos! I saw an HGTV show makeover that made me think off y our place the wonderful ferns, etc., under your deck that was what this fancy designed did for someones under-deck problem Im sure you did it first! Yours was more artfully done too w/ the hostas, etc.

Count me in on the pushmower owners but since it takes me about 10 mins to mow the 2 strips Ive got you get the pic it surely is more handy than pulling out a gas or electric fancy thing.

bug your latest shots are making those things go on a wish list very very cool plants! Sorry our buddies bailed; Its going to be cold here too it was in low 40s last nite; I yanked back in some houseplants I had audaciously repotted & put on the patio yesterday; I think Ill wait til the weekend to try again. Again, you are reminding me that Ive got to practice w/ my camera just to figure the macro out properly. . . . . o to be home enjoying the day, weather and gardens.

Well, hopefully Im caught up and not ahead of myself (re birthdays) again. . . . . It is interesting how many Idyllers are May borne.

So, just because were into photos, Im adding another feeble one of mine:


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Had a rough afternoon here. Had the police at my house over a bus incident with my son involved. An apology letter is in the works, and thankfully he wasn't involved in the worst of it...his big mistake was not listening to that voice that says, "don't do it." He was a victim of 13yo peer pressure....a pretty tough place to be. I hope that we don't lose our bus's a long walk to school!

Cindy, I love your fence....I think they call it a good neighbor fence because it is pretty on both sides. I'm shopping for fences all the time now. My neighbor has yippy dogs and I would like to have a clean backdrop to my yard.

GB, those are fantastic pictures. What sort of camera do you have? I'm shopping for those, too, LOL!

My brain is fried over all the hoopla here. I'm gonna settle down and try to get sleepy.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Evening all,

Well had my annual docs visit today, yukky. Glad thats over with for another year. Ive got to start taking more calcium, osteopenia in the hips. She felt that probably the extreme dieting of the last few years has something to do with the bone loss. Jeesh, cant win for losing. ~~ Im finally feeling like Im making some headway with the gardens and will hopefully get a few containers planted tomorrow. Also am hoping I can get the dahlias planted up tomorrow. ~~ Yesterday I had a lovely visit with Sue, Im so happy she had the time to stop by on her way home, we cracked a lovely bottle of chilled chardonnay and had a terrific visit. Ill tell you all, youd never know she had major surgery a few weeks ago. She looks great!

Saucy, so sorry about the problems with DS! I remember those teenage years and as a matter of fact, my DD lost her bus privileges in the middle of January and of course the temps were below 10 degrees the entire ten days. I did NOT drive her to school but would drive over after she got there to make sure she got there OK. It was worse for me than for her. ~~ What kind of fence do you think youd like to get?

Cindy, lovely photos. Love the architectural elements on the fence. Very neat!~~ RE greenhouse, in my dreams!!! I sure wish I had room for one. That would be marvelous.

Bug terrific photographs! Great finds! That Asarum and Tiarella are lovely.

Kathy Im insanely jealous, you dont have to dig your dahlias????!!!! Wow, another in my dreams situation. I cant tell you how much time I spend on digging and storing then replanting my dahlias.

Michelle, love the pic of Kenzie!!! What a great photo, She is just going to love that one in years to come. LOL !! Love the pic with the Angelique tulip. I used to have a couple lovely clumps of them but the darned rodents took them out.

V, great Moon Garden! Id love to sit in the evening at your fire pit. Looks wonderful.

Great plant lists everyone!

Here are a couple pics from this evening. The first three are a few more combinations Im working on for my containers.

This is one of the projects we completed on Sunday. My old Rhododendron got shovel pruned and I found this Minnetonka at our local nursery. It is supposed to be more cold hardy than the larger leaved varieties and also stay a bit smaller. Well see how it does. Also, if you notice that huge rock in the wall, that came from the garden in the corner where the wisteria tree is. Doug got it out of there a couple weeks ago and we decided to add it to the rock wall in this island. We moved that rock about 100 feet (uphill) then dismantled the old wall and got this one in place. Im really happy with the result.

The wisteria is about to put on the best show of its life. Im so pleased I can hardly stand it.

OK everyone, have a great evening. Im about to get myself to bed so I can get up and put in a full day in the garden tomorrow.


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

The Asarum splendens is just yummy, 'bug. I have mats of the Asarum europeum here, it reseeds itself everywhere, even next to the driveway where it's shadiest. Great plants. And so many other pretty additions to gardens. It's such an exciting time of year.

I worked in the island bed out back yesterday. I trimmed up the Annabelle hydrangea, and realized I could start 2 more from places where the canes have rooted themselves. Then I rearranged part of my Sibirian iris collection for better effect ;). I rescued some Chelone that was being engulfed by the hydrangea and moved it to a hole where I hope it will establish a new beachead. And I moved a Kirengeshoma to a more forward position where I hope it will adjust. And I have to throw in the towel on the poor Kalmia, I'm afraid, so tomorrow I will try to locate something more appropriate for the site (morning sun and rich, very moist soil)... I'm thinking of a Clethra.

I have struggled withe Kalmia and the Rhodos the past couple of years. It has been so wet and the site they occupy has proven too damp, I fear... the Rhodo. has leaves that are yellowing badly and the soil is acid here and there is adequate sun. I just love them, too, so I'm saddened that I've let them down. :(

I've also passed a gardening milestone, my friends. I no longer feel compelled to save everything! I have pulled Pulmonaria that has grown rampantly with impunity. Yesterday I stripped away long runners of Sweet Woodruff away from the Chelone and sent it to the compost pile with nary a second glance (buried it, too!).

It's still too cool to think about containers here; Deanne, I believe you're about a week/week and half ahead of me. I'll be content with getting the windowboxes planted by Memorial Day.

We began splitting firewood yesterday! no kidding. We dispatched roughly 3/4 cord before the chainsaw conveniently crapped out. But the amount of wood we have generated with the slash and burn part of the garage is staggering. I noticed the first wave of bugs are now out. Mostly the tiny wave of blackflies we endure before the waves of mosquitos arrive for the rest of the summer.

Saucy, how long may Jake lose his bus priviledges (if in fact, he does!)? Would it be for the rest of the year of into next, too? that doesn't seem practical from a punishment point to view to me. Good for you about the letter of apology! nothing like "eatin' a little crow" to really make the point, is there? You poor thing, you must have just about died when the cops showed up at your door... what's that line from "Finding Nemo"? "Good feelin' gone!". Hang in there, screw ups teach valuable lessons and become the stuff of humorous anecdotes with time. ;)

More I'd like to comment on, but work calls. Cynthia, would you please enjoy your days of liberty for me, too? I have to wrestle with a very large canopy today... and an indecisive boss.

Later, everyone.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi Chloe! Gosh, she is so little she makes the fence look 8 feet high. Cindy, you should have clems everywhere with so much fence. The S.leucantha are always in the herb section and mere sticks, so 6 are needed to make any kind of display for summer end.

Like Chelone, I too have reached the 'throw it' stage. I don't want to disclose what has been bagged and thrown. Not even composted for fear these things would grow and then I'd transplant them. Chelone, Rhodos love acid soil, the yellow leaves would indicate not acidic enough right? Can't believe you killed a Kalmia in Maine. They are the state shrub in NH and grow wild. Another one that loves acid. I failed with it here because it's too hot.

I had a lovely day yesterday. Transplanted the spiral aloe to a larger pot, and the sempervirums. Quite an exercise as both had filled the openings of their previous homes, so I was afraid I'd ruin them getting them out. Now only the agapanthus and the variegated agave remain to challenge me. The nice part of carrying things over in pots year to year is that the specimens get really large and impressive. The not nice part is that they need transplanting and it's a challenge to find the right pots and get them moved. I bought two non-pots for yesterday's exercise and spent way too much time drilling holes in them without breaking the pots. Today will be easier as I'll just do the impatiens pots near kitchen door and the hangars for outside that door and the gh door. The real accomplishment, besides a bunch of 'weeding' of my mistakes, and transplanting things here and there was clipping Katie's nails. Everyone else is trimmed on Sunday's but every other week is the best I can do with Katie, and her nails looked like 3 weeks of growth.

I have a dentist appt at noon, which means I can't get dirty this morning. Kathy, I'm the queen of perio and had the equivalent of a new car in my mouth a few years ago. I had a bunch of perio surgery and two implants and now having the third which I put off since there were other things to spend money on for a few years. The molar that will be replaced is comfortable, but there's no sense in waiting for the pain, so I'm biting (ha ha) the bullet on that one.

Bug, that Phyteuma nigrum is very interesting! I meant to comment on it when you first mentioned it. Thanks for sharing the photos of your acquisitions.

Deanne, that rock is so perfectly placed. Wow! And in the first photo, is that a Euporbia 'Diamond Frost' in the background? I bought a small one and gave it it's own pot. If it does well, I'll carry it over.

Saucy, Sorry about the hoopla, but better they act out and learn the lesson when they're young. This too will pass :-)

Later, Cynthia

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Chelone, I put a link below of my 2006 garden album. It has some long shots. I have hardly been in the garden lately to even take any new pictures.

Here is a link that might be useful: Michelle's 2006 Garden

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

We are investigating the possibility of pancreatitis in Charlotte. A second blood test at 7:30 tonight.
Then more decisions when we get the results next week.
This is hard stuff for you know. Sorry to post it on the Wellness thread.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Charlotte, don't be sick! GB, is she fasting now? Is that why you need to return for the blood test? I know there are different degrees of pancreatitis, but our greyhound friend George had an acute attack 2 years ago and is doing fine on a managed low fat diet. The vet should be able to give her something to help her feel better after the blood sample.

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll*

Meant to attach the Veterinary Merck Manual.

Here is a link that might be useful: Merck Manual

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Marie, I was just doing a quick skim and saw your post on Charlotte. I know how much she means to you and hope whatever is wrong is something that will be manageable. I know you're very worried and I'll be thinking the best for you both!

Looks like I've missed some great pictures the last couple of days. Something to look forward to perusing later tonight!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

The overwhelming feelings of the past few days are passing a bit. At least now I can think of something besides DH's disease. The mind takes a bit of time to wrap itself around things like this, I think. I don't remember how much I mentioned about it, but it can involve eventual kidney failure and aneurysm, for starters. It's a fibrous mass that grows and encases the ureters and sometimes the aorta (as it has in DH's case). He has another CT scan tomorrow and I guess we'll go from there.

Deanne, gorgeous combos as usual. You must have lovely nurseries up your way. This year it has been very difficult to find good stuff to put in containers! I've been all over town looking for one vine that was abundant last year (Silver Falls Dichondra). Finally found 5 pots of it at a neighboring town's only greenhouse. Between Mom and I, we took them all. And that rock is scrumptious!

Bug, great pics! It's nice your DD seems to have inherited your gardening gene. I hope someday one of my boys will find joy in gardening. My grandfather used to raise tomatoes, blackberries, and such. The other grandfather had apple and peach orchards. I was destined to love the dirt.

Brenda, hope you get your work done in the fields soon. You cross stitch! Stitching is my other passion. What types of things do you stitch? Samplers are my passion. I have several to frame and several on the walls, and several in progress. I belong to several online message boards and they enable me terribly!

Eden, I abhor tree trimmers. About every 3 or 4 years they come here to clean the trees out of the power lines. Each time they ask if they can remove the trees - NO, no way. The trees are on a steep bank at the back of our yard, and the neighbors yard is below that. I'm afraid we'd have erosion issues without the stabilizing trees. Last time they trimmed they left the wood stacked haphazardly against the telephone pole in the yard. "It's not out problem to remove that..." Several phone calls produced no results. I hope your family health issues improve, and I'm so sorry about your kitty.

Drema, congrats on the grandbaby! You'll have such fun spoiling and returning to Mama.

Saucy, I went through the same type of thing with my boys. I think they both got suspensions from the bus at some point in their school years. This too shall pass.

Cynthia, I'm sorry to hear about Monty, but now at least you can proceed to make him happy and comfy. That's all we can do sometimes. I personally get very very attached to my furbabies, so I take it very hard when health issues crop up with them.

DH took me to my favorite nursery last Saturday for my Mother's Day gift. This is not something he's ever done, usually we just go to Lowe's because he's not much into nurseries, per se. He even picked out something on his own! He came over with this small pot with a tiny hosta in it. He said, I know it's still small, but I like the leaves....he had Pandora's Box. I told him it won't get much bigger than that. He didn't realize hostas grew that small, despite the fact that I have several minis in the gardens.

Anyway, I managed to pick up a Rainbow Knockout rose, the Pandora's Box hosta, a rose colored Chelone (thought of you, Chelone!), Geranium Carol, Heuchera Dolce Mocha Mint, Salvia Pink Friesland, some verbena and Marinka and Dark Eyes fuschias. Sunday the boys bought me a Blushing Bride hydrangea. I've also picked up a pink Mandevilla vine somewhere along the way!

Today while roving the neighboring town's greenhouse, I found something I had been looking for literally FOR YEARS - Solomon's Seal! And it's variegated. I also picked up a frilly maidenhair type fern, Hemerocallis Big Smile, Flume coleus, pink tinted ipomoea, an Oriental or Asiatic lily with no name tag, chives, and lots of container plants. Now I just need to go plant those containers!


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Suzy, you sound a bit perkier today than the other day. It absolutely takes time to wrap your brain around news that is unsettling and has no easily recognizable answer. I remember that feeling. It's important to take a deep breath every so often, and try to lose yourself in something really mundane. Weeding and cleaning worked for me. There's something about keeping yourself busy with seemingly rote and routine things that allows your brain to work subconsciously on tough things. That's the basis of "Morita Therapy". Saucy coined it beautifully when she said she felt much better after she had a semblance of a plan formed. Remember to take a deep breath and enjoy the NOW.

The Chelone I moved yesterday is looking decidedly perky, and I'm surprised at the size of patch. I'll sprinkle some Espoma on Friday and allow the forecasted weekend rains to wash it down to the roots... . Kirengeshoma shows no sign of flagging and the iris look a bit battered, but none the worse for wear (as if!). My eyes are now on curbing the zeal of the Polygonatum and resurrecting the Rodgersia it is presently overwhelming.

Cynthia, the soil IS acid, we routinely treat the broadleaf evergreens with Hollytone. But the double edged sword of this lot is its low lie. I know I can't miss with things that like really moist soil... Rhodos, Kalmia like moist, WELL DRAINED soil and the site in question doesn't drain quickly; add to that 2 brutally wet springs and... you get the picture. I fear the Kalmia is toast (or, as they say in Wales, "Sop"). I'll watch the Rhodo and make decision after it flowers. My personal experience with broadleaf evergreens is that they are particularly finicky about too much wet. Is your native soil clay-y?

Charlotte has had her blood test by now... . I had a long talk with Rex about it tonight. He assures me the 'bug will make no knee jerk decisions and will know what to do. (((Hugforbug)))

Good to hear from Eden, and still wondering about Noma, and T. And Yeona... why do I always forget important names?

Kathy, your comment about the birches being "waterhogs" really struck me. NOT an issue for us! And it actually got me thinking about using a clump of them on the east side of the garage when all is said and done. I already have aphids on the New Dawn rose and the leaves are still small... . Grrr...

Shall I amputate the starts of the Annabelle? should I compost them or nurture them? ;)

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Thunderstorms here....I'm typing in between.

The school is giving Jake a strike: he's still on the bus, thank goodness.

Suzy, what a terrible diagnosis. Read and educate as much as possible. You and DH are in my thoughts.

You too, GB, Pancreatitis is not nice in a dog....I think Zeus has the same problem, but as long as he doesn't get into the wrong thing he's okay....hope you'll find's got to be tough on a farm.

I've gotta get to bed....


RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Hi all. I've been catching up on the reading and just feel like the Idylls, as a group, has had so much heartache, in many various ways, in the past months. Illnesses, relatives & friends passing, pets being ill....the list just goes on and on. This 2007 year has been a difficult one personally.....but we've had some good things happen along with the very bad. Most of the time I can find enough blessings to out number the hard stuff which helps to keep my spirits up, I hope it has been that way for everyone else, too.

I've been babysitting a lot and the twins have been sick so the days stretch a bit longer than normal. This old grandmother is feeling like a grandmother most days. ;) There have been a few days that I had 3 of the g'sons here at the same time......I sleep well after one of those days. ;o)

Drema, congratulations to you!!!

Suzy, I'm sorry that you are dealing with a tough diagnosis for your hubby.

Saucy, good to see you back.

Deanne, you've shared some gorgeous photos!

My mother's day gift from my children was money to spend on bedding plants. I told them it would be a great gift for any holiday for years to come. Made it easy on them and definitely a usable and lasting (hopefully the plants will live, lol) gift. DH bought me a lovely hanging basket for the front porch.

Well, I had the twins today and they were fussy so no housework was done. I'd better get the kitchen spiffed up before I curl up into my chair and lose momentum.

I know I missed mentioning so many big things that have happened or are happening....not intentional---sending my best to all--

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

I started a nice long post last night but had DS home and wanting to chat , and phone call from BILs in Portland and by the time all that was over with it was time to go to sleep or pay the price today with the dreaded office grogginess

So many things I want to comment on , so I will do my best, and will no doubt miss a few here and there.
First I must say weve had some really enjoyable photos posted the last couple of days. Even poor Kenzie in time-out reminded me of the fleeting nature of having very small children..I felt a little wistful-for about 10 seconds ,lol ! She is a cute little thing though !
Thank you so much Michelle for posting the wonderful shots of your 06 garden. How proud you must be of itits just beautiful ! I cant imagine what I would do with that much space..A wonderful assortment of plants, thoughtfully placed, lovely vignettes , etc etc.

Cynthia..yippee to vacation! Ill be in that mode in just a couple of weeks. I have already maxed out my dental insurance for the year. I fear that surgery (for the second time) is in my future again. Think Im looking at perhaps 1 implant. Hope you will post a picture of your spiral aloe sometime- I love aloes and agaves. I bought a boatload of new succulents this spring.
Cindy, I need to post a pic of an area in my back garden that is so similar to your Chloe pic you posted. My lawn (whats left of it) is also a path, with various pets lounging about on it-usually that cats (I refer to it as "the savannah" ) and 10 minute mowing is it for me too. I hope to visit Heirloom Roses while in Portland-went last year but it was pouring the whole time-always a risk in the PNW, so I hope for dry weather this year. Last fall I visited Cistus on Sauvie Island-that was fun .

Saucy, sorry for the troubles with the younger set. I had my share of those believe me. I look back on those times and it is hard to imagine that my 2 young adult kids are even the same people they were back then. Sometimes being caught doing stupid things can begin the turnaround.

Deanne, your potential container arrangements are dynamitecant wait to see them in full glory. Some folks out here in Norcal do dig their Dahlias, but I think its a rain thing, trying to avoid rot.

Chelone, dont you just love Annabelle? I wish I had room for a couple more. And as for Sweet Woodruff??? Fie on that one I say ! Ive dug up enough of that to fill a couple yard waste bins and then some, and it has figured prominently in my compost piles. Wish Id never planted it.

bug ! Good vibes to Charlotte. I hope that the news is something manageable.

Suzy, you have been plant shopping up a storm ! How scary for you and your DH-anything involving the aorta is certainly of a serious nature. I hope your Docs are able to find treatments that will ease him.
Well, Im out of steam for now---a big wave to everyone,

This is where DS spent a few days last week. Those of you who have been there will probably recognize it.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Kathy in Napa

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

The first order of business today is to wish T a very happy birthday!

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I know how it can be when life sort of rolls over you. I hope you have "your day" all to yourself and are able to do whatever you please. And be sure to eat some cake, LOTS of cake. Fond wishes for a lovely birthday, T!

Great news for Saucy's delinquent-in-training; it may be called the "loser cruiser", but the schoolbus beats the hell outta walkin' or riding a bike in the rain. :) We had a thunderstorm in the wee hours this morning. Spencer was a little tense, but then returned to his preferred curling place right under my chin. Think of how good all the rain will be for your new plants! Mum always had a special fondness for teenage boys, esp. younger teens. She liked their mercurial nature; one moment childlike the next quite grown up. I'm fond of that age group, too...

I'm looking forward to a rainy day today. I've gotten a lot done in the gardens and the rain is going to wash the fertilizer down to the roots of things nicely. I wish it wasn't going to rain all weekend, but I'm sure I'll find something to fill the hours (finish my new awnings? make a cushion I've been putting off for months now?).

I haven't made a decision about Annabelle. But yes, Kathy, she is one of my favorites. EASY! you can't screw it up since it will flower on old canes or new ones. There was a handsome one in the little square that welcomed you to the village I lived in as a kid. I was heartbroken when some donkey took it upon herself to rip it out and replace it with a military arrangement of marigolds... nice improvement, dogbreath! :(

Michelle, I'm glad you posted the link to your gardens, I skimmed quickly, but really want to go back and soak it up. Just so, so pretty... did you do all the work yourself or did you inherit some of it?

It's time for me to face the music and propel my hindquarters toward the transport pod. Later 'gators!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Happy Birthday Teresa

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RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll again

Hi everyone

T - I hope your day is filled with wonderful things including some time for yourself.

GB- I'm so sorry to hear about Charlotte and hope management of her condition is possible. Having met her I know how special she is and what a dear place she holds in your heart.

Michelle - your gardens are indeed lovely. Thank you for sharing them with us - I know I'll be back to enjoy them some more.

Saucy - hang in there! Not having a bus suspension must be a huge relief and perhaps enough of a wakeup call for Jake to make changes.

CHelone - I adore my Annabelle but she has got rather floppy with age (like myself) despite being in full sun. Do you ever have to stake yours? I did more of a prune this spring hoping to get her to shape up. Perhaps a few push ups..........

Cynthia - the variegated Salvia is Desert Blaze. I'm a sucker for anything in the sage family and can't resist any new ones I see, even though I rarely get the tender ones through the winter. I think it comes from our year in San Diego where they were the favorite part of my garden. I'm still looking for a few Leuncatha - I like to use them in the gaps the spring bulbs leave. They provide late season bloom, fragrance and the deer don't touch them - what more could you ask for?

This week is proving busier than ever - Annie is in the last throws of rehearsals for the musical Peter Pan. She was at the dress rehearsal yesterday from 4 - 9.30 PM I don't know where the kids find the energy but they still seem to be enjoying it. Tonight I'm cooking dinner for some colleagues of DH's who are in town. I've been spending so much time outside I hadn't realized how much I'd let housework slip. It could be a scramble to pull things together but the groceries are purchased and the big tidy up started. I wish I could wave a wand and the dusting, vacuuming and floor washing be magically done too.

Have a good one


Here is a link that might be useful: Salvia Desert Balze

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Shall I do this again on the right day? Of course! ;-) Wishing you the best, T. May your dreams come true!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

Suzy-I'm so sorry to hear about your husband. I'm sending good thoughts your way!
I've done a lot of cross stitch pictures, most with gardens in them..go figure ;) Currently, I'm stitching blocks for a quilt. It will have 8 different block patterns, and will take 18 of each pattern to complete the quilt. Long term project, needless to say. AND, I've never quilted before, so it will be a real learning experience when I get to putting it together.

Saucy-My DS was a "special challenge"'s a wonder I'm not completely grey...or bald, lol! Glad he didn't lose his bus priveleges! Hang in there, it gets better!!!

Michelle, that shot of Kenzie is just adorable :)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, T!! Sorry, I don't have a pic for ya-I've yet to take any this year.

I know I missed a bunch of stuff, but haven't had time to read thoroughly. We're two days away from having all the corn planted. WOO HOO! The soybeans will go fast, and then it's time for my summer vacation. The guys will still have plenty to do, but once the seeds are in the ground, they pretty much leave me alone. Yesterday, we were in the fields farthest from home, and a really wicked storm came up. The gusts ahead of the front were just unreal. All of a sudden the dirt in all the fields started rising and swirling and I literally could not see out of the tractor. I lived through a tornado as a kid, and I was terrified. Fortunately it was nothing that bad, just really strong wind. Had to make a run for the truck, got soaked, came home, showered, ate and fell into bed around 7:00.
Let's hope for a less eventful day today!
Gotta run, kids. Have a great day!

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

RE: Idyll #317 The Wellness Idyll

~*~**~~*Happy Birthday Teresa *~~**~*~

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