This Morning’s View, While Weeding

I donated some weeding time to our church auction a few months ago.  This morning was weeding day for the kind friends who purchased my services.  I love to weed! It’s relaxing and I love seeing an area of the garden pop out and shine. I enjoyed it even more than usual today because this was my view:

Peace and tranquility at it’s best!

and a nice finished product at the end!

Well, almost finished, I made a few more passes over this before I was done.

Enjoy everything today!

Love,  Michele

What’s Happening in the Garden- August 8, and a Little Check In

I’ve been so busy for the past ten days or so. I feel like I run through the garden, pull a few weeds, pick something and keep going. Next week looks like it will be kind of quiet and close to home. No one is at camp, no big commitments. I’m hoping to cook, bake and  freeze produce. I may even try to do some canning again. If any or all of this happens, you’ll likely be reading about it!  Here’s a quick view of the garden this morning.

I’ll start with the green monster at the moment. I did get a new, larger rug (I’ll post a pic when I do finish this project) and I’m thinking about hanging the old one above the love seat. I’m watching the trash for just the right garden gate to hang here but I haven’t found it yet.  I’m working on it…one thing at a time. I’ll keep you posted if something great happens here!

We have just one more gladioli blooming. I was hoping for a dramatic presentation right along the fence but so far this is really slow. 

This Morning Glory appeared and surprised me. I didn’t plant Morning Glories this year and I was missing them. I don’t see the Scarlet Runner Bean plants that I did plant here? guess the Morning Glories won the war.

The cabbage is a little bit chomped on the edges but I think it will be fine if we keep a close eye on it.

The pumpkin plant is taking over the corner! I love when that happens!

We have one pumpkin and I think there are a few more hiding in there. If nothing gets to them we should have some for Halloween.

Zinnias are happy, and that bolted lettuce needs to be pulled 🙂

Here’s a wider shot that I just took a few minutes ago. 

I love this time of the year!!

Hope you get outside and enjoy everything!

Love,  Michele

A Walk Through the National Garden

Last week I wrote a post about my visit to the Children’s Garden at the US Botanic Garden. Here are a few photos from the rest of my visit. It was unbelievably hot that day and I had all of the outside gardens to myself. The conservatory was climate controlled, of course, and just beautiful.  If I lived or worked in DC I’m sure that I  would visit very, very often.

The garden is located  just to the right of the capital building, at the end of the National Mall.

Inside the conservatory there are surprises everywhere.

I loved this Pink Powder Puff, Calliandra emarginata

 and this beautiful view.

There are educational exhibits.  

And there are orchids. Here are a few photos for my friends who grow orchids…

I loved the beautiful pots of succulents and the great benches.

I need one of these butterfly benches!

The First Lady’s Water Garden looked very refreshing.

As you know, I love Echinacea… this variety is called Big Sky Sunrise.

The garden was a perfect respite from the DC heat.

I’ll be sure to return the next time I’m on Capital Hill!

What’s Happening In the Garden- July 28

We’ve had pretty unsettled weather here this week. Lots of thunderstorm warnings and showers. We did have drought early in the spring but from my perspective our summer has been pretty typical.  Plenty of sunny days and rain at reasonable intervals. I think that our water table may still be down a bit from the spring and a slightly lower rainfall amount overall. I’m very worried for gardeners and farmers across the US who are experiencing their most severe drought in many years. If you missed it yesterday be sure to check out the post that I re-blogged from A Healthy Life for Me about how hot weather affects the garden.  While your there be sure to check out the recipes too!

Here in the Salem Garden, things are coming right along. The Black-eyed Susan and Echinacea are in full bloom. I remember the neighbor who gave me my first clump of Black-Eyed Susan saying that they are “like sunshine”.  They really are!

This single  Sunflower popped up on the edge of the yard this week. I had no idea it was there. We didn’t plant it on purpose it just reseeded from somewhere. What a nice surprise!

Here’s our first Zinnia bloom! I should have plenty for cutting in a few days.

The pole beans found the fence and trellis. I’m wondering if they need a more pole-like structure to climb on.  

This large plant is Horseradish. This is its second year and it has come into its own. I need to weed around it and add some compost.

It’s time to make some pesto! I’ll try to freeze some this week. I did clip back those flower buds after I took this photo. Be sure to clip the flower buds off of the Basil daily. It makes a big difference!

We have red tomatoes! Yay! A little wilt too. These Cherry tomato plants are across the garden from the Roma. I find Roma tomatoes to be a very disease resistant variety, but I’ll be sure to pick from the Cherry plants last and wash my hands well before I touch the Roma again. I hope that helps to prevent it from spreading, at least for a while.
The first gladioli is blooming! Hopefully we’ll see lots of these in the next week or so.

Time to get outside! There’s lots to do!

What’s growing in your garden?  Leave a comment and let me know!

Enjoy Everything!!

Michele

A Great Stop in DC—The US Botanic Garden, Children’s Garden

We were in Washington DC a few weeks ago and I treated myself to a walk in the US Botanic Garden.  I would have taken my  family with me for my walk but it was literally 108 degrees that day. They stayed in the cool air conditioned Smithsonian while I enjoyed the garden. Needless to say I had the whole thing to myself and it was glorious! I spent about 45 minutes relaxing and taking in every nook and cranny. One of the highlights was the Children’s Garden. It’s a beautiful child friendly oasis in the middle of all of the DC action.

The Children’s Garden is located just outside of the huge conservatory.

The plants are so varied.  The  shapes, colors, sizes and textures are really engaging.

The posted rules are simple and child friendly.

I saw pots of plants waiting for kids to put into the ground themselves.

Unfortunately I missed the photo, but I loved the concept!

There’s a fountain (pictured on the left) that children can play in and use to water plants. There’s a wonderful green-roofed playhouse!Along with places to hide and run…and to pretend and just “be”…It was easy to get lost in the whimsy and fun.

I hope that next time my children are in the photos too!

They would have enjoyed this… it’s a great place for families to learn, relax and spend time together while enjoying Washington DC.

I could have stayed for hours!

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Grandma’s Garden in Delaware

We were in Delaware a few weeks ago, visiting my mother-in-law.

There’s so much to do down there, beaches, shopping, great places to eat… one of my favorite things about our trip is always her beautiful garden!

The garden is breezy and fun, it’s always changing!

This year the larkspur was wonderful. We caught it after its peak but it was still beautiful!

There’s also dill and echinacea  and other surprises…

Birdhouses…

and ornaments…

This is how rosemary grows in Delaware.

Remember my little rosemary plant from the other day? I was so proud of wintering over a one foot tall plant.

Maybe the little angel is helping.

Her dill has always reseeded and flourished, it took me forever to just let mine go.

I used to look at this dill and wonder how it happened.

Herbs grow on the deck too.

This guy keeps an eye on everything.

Here’s our view during morning coffee or after time at the beach.

It’s always hard to leave, but we’ll be back to enjoy it again soon!

What’s Happening in the Garden — July 14th

July is kind of a funny month in the garden. It’s in-between in terms of blooming and beauty but it’s so hard at work!

I love watching things grow and change at this time of year.

Our potatoes are flowering! I didn’t know that potato flowers were this pretty.

I have to apologize for the less than clear shot, my camera focus has a mind of its own and this is what it was doing for potatoes this morning.

The Black-eyed Susan are ready to pop!

This is Scarlet Runner Bean climbing on the trellis. It’s ornamental and so pretty.

If you live locally give me a shout if you’d like some seeds for next year.

We have peppers!  There are lots of buds… I hope they make it! I’d better reign that cucumber vine in if I want that to happen.

The dill is ready for pickles. 

Here come some Kentucky Pole beans that I planted as the  peas were winding down.

I hope they make the little leap over to the fence/trellis and start climbing.

This Rosemary plant wintered over. We covered it with a bucket on the coldest days. I usually pot Rosemary up in November and bring it in. It makes it until the middle of January, then I forget to water it just once and it dies immediately.  I had the great pleasure of hearing Adelma Simms speak about herb gardening at Caprilands many years ago. I still remember her saying “a dry rosemary is a dead rosemary”.  I find that to be true almost every winter.

In the coop, the younger side of the chicken flock is still favoring the corner.

They do come forward to eat and drink and their all interacting a little bit more every day. It just takes time.

The tomatoes look happy!

Balloon flower is blooming… such a fun plant!

Kids really enjoy it.

The Liatris bulbs that I planted in June popped up.

They went in kind of late but I think we’ll see some blooms.

As I looked through these photos I saw one common denominator… can you guess what it was? Here’s a hint, there’s some weeding to do  🙂

Thanks for stopping in! Have a great weekend!

Michele