susansflowers

garden ponderings


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Blooming Herbs

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French cooking thyme & onion (not garlic) chives.

Trying desperately to get the vegetable garden planted by the end of May.
The beds are tilled up, tomorrow morning they will get raked smooth, then the watering system can get hooked up.
I’ve been saving vegetable and flower seeds for many years, in zip-close bags in the refrigerator.
My plan for this year is to plant all the seeds I can – they won’t save forever.
Will keep you posted on my latest grand idea 🙂

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Christmas Cactus

I picked up starts for Christmas Cactus a number of years ago from a friend.  A start is merely a ‘leaf’ from a plant.  Not knowing anything about these, but that I coveted such a pretty flowering plant, I acquired ‘leaves’ from 4 separate and different colored flowering specimens.  Needless to say, not all survived.  But the ones that did take root have given me great joy, as they flower in the early winter when everything outdoors has ‘given up the ghost’ for the season here in the Pacific Northwest.

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This sturdy plant hangs in a southwest facing room at the back of the house.  Yes, I forget to water it sometimes, specially when I get busy outdoors in the warm season.  Then I remember that this is a succulent and doesn’t mind drying out between waterings – as long as I don’t let it dry out too much!  It does not want to be forgotten, just like the rest of us.

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A teeny-tiny bathroom is the home of this beauty.  It was a challenge to photograph because there was so little room to move, and the incoming daylight was difficult to adjust for.  I lowered the shade, but there is still strange colored light.  This plant has definitely found its home.  Its funny (to me) how similar plants fare so differently in various exposures, like in windowsills around the house.

Japanese Maple with tulips

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Japanese Maple with tulips

This is the second year for the tulips and the tree – in a newer planting bed. The pink tulips are starting to fade while the yellow ones are coming on. When both colors are still here and the tree is just leafed out, is the prettiest display time for this combination.

The Japanese maple has very tiny flowers right now. I have not figured how to capture them with the camera – yet. It may take another year, as my window of opportunity is small.

According to its tag, this tree is supposed to get taller. Maybe then I can remove the deer fence/flower jail when it is not tulip season. Besides spring, there are other times of the year when the deer will look for anything fresh and green to eat. I believe the wildlife look at tulips and roses as humans see chocolate. Not that they taste similar, just that they are treats to savor. If no people are around to make the ‘natives’ keep their distance, they can get specially brazen with their choices of food.


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Santolina

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAThis is one of thefirst plants I bought for here at least 25 years ago.   It grew and multiplied for many years, as it did not get pruned at all.  Then one year we had a severe freeze and most of the plant died.  A number of small starts remained.  This is when I started cutting back the plant after it flowered, and noticed how it grew.  It is a very drought tolerant herb that likes the sun.  The soft greyish  color looks good in flower bed all year long.  By pruning, I can keep its growth under control.

I’ve read that plants with scented or greyish leaves are generally deer proof, and this has been shown to be true in my unfenced areas.   It is slowly getting moved around to other places around the property, as I am now striving for some artistic arrangement of plantings.

I had hoped my first post would show a flower, but not this winter. Last year, on New Year’s Day 2013, I had a yellow miniature rose bloom. But we soon got a cold snap, and the flower froze on the bush.