The Summer Garden is Coming to a Close

I sadly saw yesterday a weather report that mentioned the "F" word - FROST.  It's coming very soon, most likely Sunday and/or Monday nights.  While there are some good feelings about this - like a rest period for the gardener - it's also a time I dread.  Those fresh tomatoes from the garden will soon be a thing of the past.  We've frozen some sauce to enjoy over the winter in soups or pasta but it's not as great as walking out under the summer sun and picking that ripe juicy tomato for my turkey sandwich. I'll probably cover our tomatoes for the next couple weeks to try and resist the cold a just little longer but the summer garden is quickly coming to a close.  I use old sheets to cover them since they don't transfer the cold through them like plastic does. The fall garden is partially planted…

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Trying to catch My Breath!

I've been so busy that I've neglected the blog for a few days.  I even had to miss posting the Friday Fives last Friday in order to get everything done!  Fortunately the weekend rains and Mother's Day gave me a bit of a break to catch my breath but I still feel like I have a to do list a mile long to accomplish.  I hesitate even to show you the current state of the garden.  The weeds are growing a mile a minute and I just haven't had a chance to get out there.  (With over two inches of rain from the weekend they will grow even faster now.)  You're probably wondering why I'm so busy.  OK...even if you aren't you probably are now, if not just pretend and read along anyway. ;) My mini-nursery business deliveries were mostly fulfilled last week.  There are still a couple more to…

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8 Things I Learned Over The Weekend

Coral Honeysuckle - Lonicera sempervirens I had one of those extremely busy weekends.  The kind where you have so much to do you don't know exactly where to start.  When you finally do start you discover that to do one task you have to do another task first. Then when you finally get going you move from one job, to another, to another, and there is no end in sight!  I'm sure you know exactly what I'm talking about.  But there are a few things I learned over this weekend that I thought I would share with you. Unseasonably warm weather may seem to be a blessing at times but it also brings a bunch of problems.  Foremost is the presence of weeds.  The chickweed has exploded into prolific proportions while other weeds are coming up at least a month early.  Ragweed which usually does begin to grow for a…

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Sunny Flowers from Sunny Summer Days

The rainy weather and "normal" temperatures seem to be headed back our way, so why not take a look back at some sunny blooms from summer's past? These flowers all came from the July of 2009 version of my garden, some are annuals and others are perennials and some are somewhere in between!  The in between flowers are generally perennials but tend to be short lived or just marginally hardy.  This rudbeckia (I believe) is called 'Cappuccino'.  Perfect for starting off a post on a rainy morning! I planted it from seed.  Sunflowers are always an easy way to brighten up the garden. They add a height element that can attract the eyes as well as the bees! Zinnias are simply an awesome summer flower.  Easy to grow!  So what if zinnias get powdery mildew, just space them out well and enjoy the beauty they add to the garden.  Zinnias…

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Spring is Progressing Around the Garden

It's been warm here in TN.  Very warm. So warm that everything thinks it is indeed spring - including this gardener!  Essentially it is spring.  The weather is identical to a typical March, warm days, heavy rain showers coming through.  We've even had thunderstorms - in January.  It's been a strange month.  But just because it feels like spring, looks like spring, and smells like spring doesn't mean it IS spring.  We need to keep that idea in our heads a while longer.  Spring is coming, it's not here yet; frosts can and probably will come before our safe planting date. But no matter what logic I use to temper my planting enthusiasm that logic fails to sway the plants back into dormancy.  Buds are swelling on the fruit trees which tells me I'm going to have to protect those blossoms from cold if I want peaches and plums this…

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Randomness from Wednesday

Wednesday was full of randomness, although it wasn't all gardening.  A little bird watching, a little gardening, and a little bit of house stuff all rolled together to make a Wednesday. The day started with a trip to the home improvement store.  Not for gardening stuff this time but for painting materials.  A bathroom in our house needs redone so I ventured out to find what we needed.  Fortunately the garden center area wasn't stocked yet and the temptation to add more plants to the garden was not there. Later in the day I went out exploring the garden in the 30 degree weather.  And I found this: The hyacinths are rising!  Already.  It seems very early to me but the weather has been much warmer this year and it makes sense.  I looked back at a blog post from 2009 and saw that the last week of January was…

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Around the Garden in October

It's been while since I showed larger scale pictures of the garden.  Mostly because it was such a mess over the summer. Today I'll share a few photos of the various garden areas.  The resiliency of plants is simply amazing. With neglect, wet weather, dry weather, hot weather, and lack of time my plants seem to be doing fine! The Front Garden Walkway Right now in the front garden along the sidewalk you will see mums becoming the center of attention. The red mums to the right have been in the ground for several years and have gotten quite large.  I didn't cut them back even once this year and their timing seems to be just perfect.  The mums on the left side of the sidewalk are the 'Clara Curtis' mums I mentioned in an earlier post. The 'Autumn Joy' sedum is going to seed while the gaillardia is still…

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Pineapple Sage – Still Not Blooming!

This spring I bought this pineapple sage at a garden show fully expecting it to thrive and burst into colorful red blooms. Well I can say one thing, it is thriving!  For some reason the blooms are just now beginning to form despite it growing to a size of about three and a half feet round.  It has nearly overtaken the 'Little Giant' arborvitae planted next door. The blooms that are forming should begin to put on their show within the next week but I could have sworn that my pineapple sage from last year bloomed much earlier! In other blooming news my Gossypium herbaceum 'Nigrum' is in bloom, that would be cotton.  I mentioned this cotton on the Facebook page last night.  It's gorgeous blooms would be much better displayed if planted enmass in a better location. I'll blame the local gardener for that. He's always sticking stuff in…

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Parenting, Gardening, and Time…

I'm finding that this year has by far been the most challenging year for the garden. At least so far. It's not just because of the sweltering heat that is sitting on us like some big ole bear on a circus ball. And it's not just the complete lack of rain over the last couple week (wait I did feel about 5-6 drops the other day - no exaggeration here - only 5-6 drops). What has really made this year a challenge so far is time. Time is the one factor in everything that is beyond our control. We can manipulate how we spend our time but no matter what we do time still goes, it travels, and it travels fast! It seems like overnight my oldest daughter finished kindergarten. School was a challenge - not for her she breezed through - but for me. For those who have followed…

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My Plant Yard Sale Experience

As you probably know (or have guessed by now) my dream job/career would be to own my own nursery. I've thought about different ways to do this and researched quite a few options. Ideally I would work from home and be able to produce plants for retail nurseries or landscapers. That dream is still a long way off at this point but I tried something of an experiment this past weekend, we had a yard sale, and I tried to sell a few plants. Saturday, the day of the garage sale, was gorgeous. A cool crisp morning - jacket weather, led to a warm and sunny late morning and afternoon. People came by at a regular pace, looking for bargains and deals. One person asked if I had guns and knives - nope not here. Another person was looking for buttons. Another yardsaler was looking for patio furniture - closer…

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