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Friday, August 30, 2013

Hot And Orange

It has gotten HOT again at Garden on Sherlock Street.  Our mild August with rain is over.  Has been for a couple of weeks.  Good news:  our drought status has been moved from 'Extreme' to 'Severe' due to the rains earlier this summer.  Glad for every drop.

We're harvesting squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, green beans and peppers.  I take the extras to work and they all seem to find grateful people.  Watching the winter squash plants make fruit and looking forward to harvesting them when it is time.  Most excited that this year, there will be pumpkins.


Still waiting to see any hummingbirds.  I keep putting out fresh sugar water.

The butterflies are increasing in number.  It's just too hot to chase them around the garden with a camera.
We're suppose to cool down for Labor Day.

Life is good at GonSS.  It is certainly late summer with the heat, but signs of autumn are starting to appear.

Almost time for the monthly tour photos.  Stay tuned.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Short But Sweet

 The butterfly bush is finally blooming.
The late frosts and freezes this past spring stunted its start.  It is much shorter than usual.


However, it has the biggest bloom clusters its ever grown.


I'm always amazed at how many tiny flowers make up each 'bloom.'


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Comments On The Cukes

I love cucumbers.  Simple salads of sliced cukes with a little dressing and I'm set.  I could eat them with most every summer meal.

My go to cucumber variety is marketmore 76.  It grows well here.  They don't get too long and they stay fairly straight.


I also have white wonder growing.  I got the seeds free with a seed order last year.


I planted twice as many of the marketmore 76 than the white wonder, but I'm harvesting twice as many of the white wonder than the marketmore 76.

White wonder is much easier to find in the cucumber vines.
Maybe I just haven't found all of the others.  ;-)

Marketmore 76 has a few prickly points as all cucumbers do.
White wonder is COVERED with prickly points.  I seriously wear gloves when I harvest them.  They take extra scrubbing with the veggie brush.

Have only had a few be slightly bitter this summer.
I would say the cucumbers have been a success.


Monday, August 19, 2013

Showing Off The Salvia

Our recent rains have spruced up the salvia along the driveway.  It is blooming like crazy.
Passersby have stopped if I'm in the garden to tell me how nice it looks.
People we know who drive past our home have commented on how it catches their eye when they pass.


This is the view of the salvia from the bench on the front patio.
There are some purple fountain grass containers sharing the view.


Saturday, August 17, 2013

Fast Pickles



Fast Pickles

cucumbers
onions

3 cups vinegar
1 cup cold water
4 cups sugar
½ cup pickling salt
1 1/3 Tbsp mustard seed
1 1/3 Tbsp celery seed
1 1/3 tsp turmeric

Wash cucumbers well.  Cut off the ends, but do not peel.  Slice thin.

Peel onions.  Slice thin and separate rings.

Mix vinegar, water, sugar, pickling salt, mustard seed, celery seed and turmeric.  Stir with a wooden spoon until well mixed and dissolved.  Do not heat or boil.

Fill clean canning jars with cucumbers and onions to your liking.  Pack in as many as possible.

Pour cold brine over the sliced cucumbers and onions covering completely.
  
Put new lids on the jars securing with rings and place in refrigerator.

Ready to eat in a week.  Will keep in refrigerator for a year.  

Note:  Extra brine can be stored in refrigerator to use when you get more cucumbers and onions ready to preserve.


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Big Flock

If you've checked out my garden tours, you may have wondered what this section has growing in the side garden.

My mother gave me a plastic grocery sack of hens and chicks one year.  They have multiplied.


They grow in large clumps.
While they are very drought tolerant, I do have to water them occasionally.  It becomes obvious when they need a drink.


In the winter, they turn purple.


Some are sending up blooms.
This is the last thing the plant does before dying and allowing its many chicks to have the space.  I usually pull them out once they die so there isn't a brown blob in the there.


The largest one at this time is nine inches across.




Monday, August 12, 2013

A Special Visitor At Garden On Sherlock Street

Saturday morning dawned with the promise of more beautiful weather at Garden on Sherlock Street.  My wonderful husband and I had plans to ride our bikes with some friends in the morning.  We were just getting started when a text message from Melanie at There's No Place Like Home rang my phone.  She was going to be in town.  Were we available for a visit?  "Yes!" was my reply.

After a great bike ride, a phone call finalized the plans and we were ready for Melanie and a couple of her children to visit.

It was a fast garden tour, but with the recent rains and milder temperatures, the garden put on a nice display.
We talked and laughed and shared time together in the garden and over lunch.  A sweet friendship that started about three years ago through our blogs.  Last year, WH and I made the trip to her garden.

We posed for a couple of photos...

In the front garden where it was very sunny.


In the back garden enjoying a little shade.


Thanks for everything Melanie.  So nice to see you again.
Here's to more garden visits.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Snow In August

A couple of years ago, a friend gave me some seeds for snow on the mountain which is a native wildflower.  It did well, but did not reseed for the next year.

Well, surprise, snow on the mountain has appeared in the side garden again.



Friday, August 9, 2013

Sweet Details

Just a few little things I noticed in the garden this past week.

The asparagus is making berries.


My clematis is blooming well even if many of the vines look brown.


The purple hyacinth bean vine plants are climbing the teepee trellises.


They smell wonderful.


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

2013 Back Garden Containers III

Here are more comparison photos of the back garden containers.
Some of the changes have been dramatic.

May 20
purple angelonia and silver falls dichondra

July 1
purple angelonia and silver falls dichondra

August 6
purple angelonia and silver falls dichondra

May 20
green sweet potato vine

July 1
green sweet potato vine

August 6

green sweet potato vine

May 20
asparagus fern and rose moss   

July 1
asparagus fern and rose moss

May 20
ice plant

July 1
ice plant

August 6

asparagus fern and rose moss
ice plant

May 20
variegated sweet potato vine and wave petunias

July 1
variegated sweet potato vine, fiber optic grass and wave petunias 

August 6
variegated sweet potato vine, fiber optic grass and wave petunias

May 20
ice plant and rose moss

July 1
ice plant and rose moss

August 6
ice plant and rose moss

May 20
white wave petunia

July 1
white wave petunia and morning glory

August 6

white wave petunia and morning glory

May 20
vincas

July 1
begonias

August 6


May 20
dianthus

dianthus
July 1
dianthus

August 6

dianthus

May 20
vincas

July 1
vincas

August 6

May 20
impatiens

July 1
impatiens
August 6
impatiens

May 20
caladiums   

July 1
caladiums

August 6
caladiums

May 20
white bacopa
gold dust mecardonia and wandering jew cuttings
gold dust mecardonia and wandering jew cuttings

July 1
white bacopa
gold dust mecardonia and wandering jew cuttings
gold dust mecardonia and wandering jew cuttings

August 6

white bacopa
gold dust mecardonia and wandering jew cuttings
gold dust mecardonia and wandering jew cuttings

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