susansflowers

garden ponderings


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Fruiting Plum Trees

Plum trees flower so early in the season here, we rarely get fruit.
On top of that, we have had rain every day for over a week,
which is not great for pollination.

Above is a Santa Rosa plum tree whose fruit is so delicious to eat right out of hand.
The last time this tree bore fruit was 25 summers ago.  We took quart bags of home-grown plums on a family river rafting trip.  They were so juicy, just a few bites,
then see how far you can toss the pit.

This Japanese prune plum tree has borne only a handful of fruit in over 25 years.
It was swarming with insects that appeared to be fertilizing the blossoms,
on the cool, but dry afternoon, this photo was taken.

Besides conducive weather at pollination time, we need no more below freezing temperatures.  I will always remember when it was severely cold one Mother’s Day in early May – we lost the fruit from all of our trees that year.

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Hordes of Hyacinths

For many years, I made hyacinth vases to sell before the holidays.
They always included a pre-chilled bulb, ready to be forced to bloom.

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Of course, there were always left over bulbs (as I ordered in quantity),
that I kept planting in my gardens.

Most of the hyacinth bulbs live in my ‘flower jails’
to protect them from marauding deer and rabbits.

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Every year the rabbits have chewed the flowers and leaves of the un-fenced bulbs in this bed.  This is the first year in memory, the flowers have survived.

The rabbit population rises and falls annually, opposite that of the predators, usually coyotes, though there is the occasional bobcat or bear.  Since hyacinths are blooming safely out of the fence, it lets me know to be aware the predator population is on the rise.


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Dozens of Dozens of Daffodils

For me, daffodils are the sure sign of spring.  They are not subtle, but come on strong and take over the gardens.  I love it!

Neither deer or rabbits are interested in eating these bulbs or flowers.
I keep dividing the bulbs as they multiply generously.

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This bouquet lives in a Goddess Vase I made.
Of porcelain clay, fired in my hybrid wood-fueled kiln.


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A Different Bloomer

I have driven past this tree many times through the years, and finally  bothered to stop and take a photo.  Have seen many more shoes on this tree at various times in the past.
I suppose a big wind or snowstorm could decimate the decorations, as it would with any tree in bloom.  Or maybe someone just saw a pair they could not live without!

Do you notice that all the shoes are paired?
I’ll bet that makes it easier to get them to hang on the tree.
I believe I’ve seen similar trees on other desolate roads – though this particular one gets plenty of traffic for a two-lane road.