Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Hanging Planters

We just returned from the East Coast. I love hanging planters and found some beautiful planters in the historic district of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

I have not had success in creating hanging planters in California. They require a daily watering and my irrigation system drip system doesn't provide enough water to satisfy their needs.

Origins of a Gardener

I have enjoyed gardening for years. My dad taught me how to plant tomatoes, corn and cucumbers. I helped my mom can bread and butter pickles one summer in our kitchen in Northfield Center, Ohio.

I have gardened in Ohio; Kentucky; Florida; Virginia Water, England; Texas; and California. When I gardened in Kentucky, it was fun to see if you could get the pansies to last through the entire winter.

I love when my garden produces volunteers. Once I had pumpkin volunteers. I compost and tossed the gunk from our Halloween pumpkin in the compost pile. Some of the seeds found their way out of the pile and into the dirt. The next summer I had vines of pumpkins all over the place. Currently, the most likely seeds to volunteer in my California garden is the purple cosmos plant. No complaints here since it provides lovely purple flowers!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Do I have any volunteers?

Volunteer to bloom! That's what this cosmos has done. This wonderful plant stands about waist high and is loaded with purple blossoms with fuzzy yellow centers. This variety of flowers are recommended for bouquets but I very rarely harvest the blossoms from the garden because I enjoy seeing them when I tend the vegetables I am growing.

My Rose Smells So Sweet

This lovely red rose always provides a sweet fragrance to my garden when it is in bloom. This particular rose plant is next to a white rose bush. The white rose doesn't have a fragrance.

This year I was so busy I didn't have time to fertilize the roses in the spring. Now I am paying for it with smaller blossoms.

As usual, this rose bush is very susceptible to powdery mildew. As you can see, the rose bush is planted very close to the wall of the house. This limits the amount of ventilation the bush gets and increases the chance of powdery mildew forming.

The newer leaves of rose bushes are rust red when they first appear and as they age, become saturated with green coloring.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Construction Zone: Creating Cinderella's Carriage

This is the beginning of a pumpkin. If fertilized, the small round bulb will grow into a pumpkin. Pollen will come from a large yellow flower. Sometimes I help the process along!
In the area where I live, I find I constantly am battling powdery mildew on my pumpkin, cucumber, and zucchini plant leaves.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

You say eggplant; I say aubergine!

These beautiful soft purple flowers will develop into the beautiful deep purple eggplant. Hurry!

Monday, August 01, 2005

Dividing Iris

You can see the large old root with the newer nodes and fans of leaves. Gently remove the excess soil from the roots.

Trim the roots to 5 inches.Trim the fan leave to six inches.

Using a serrated knife, carefully remove the new rhizome and fan of leaves from the old stem structure.
As a precaution, you should sterilize the knife between each cut in a solution of disinfectant.


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