Monday, June 29, 2009

Bargain Plants/A Garden in the Car

I have been noticing some holes in my beds, partly due to the foliage of bulbs finally dying back. I made a list of where they were, and went to see if the annuals were on sale at one of the locally owned nurseries I like to go to. The 4 packs were buy one get one free, but the large individual pots aren't on sale yet. I got a few plants, then, I decided to stop at the hardware store near us on the way home. I picked out a shrub, the Magnus Coneflower in the first photo, and an individual annual. When I went in to pay, the woman said the plants had just gone from 50% to 75% off, so I went out and grabbed some more.

These are the plants from Finke's Garden Center. I usually don't ask for help, but had read that you can put vines on your butterfly shelter brush piles, so I asked her for ideas. I said I'd thought about transplanting some of my morning glories, but wasn't thrilled about having unwanted seedlings to pull out next year. We looked around, and she said she would just give me one of their morning glories, because they weren't going to last much longer in the greenhouse. I took one because it was a different color, and I liked it. (I put butterfly shelter in bold, with a link to where I said it was for butterflies, because a neighbor thought it was for snakes.)

Here is my haul from Westlake Hardware. My choice of the shrub, Chardonnay Pearls Deutzia, was influenced by seeing some deutzias blooming on people's blogs. I am excited for next spring to see the blooms.

Have you finished planting for the season? Kathy, from Cold Climate Gardening recently posted that she is finished planting annuals, and I hope to be finished with annuals and perennials tomorrow.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Lemon Balm Tea

If you've never grown lemon balm, then you may not know that it reseeds prolifically, and is also a perennial that spreads. I had gotten fed up a few years ago, and pulled all of mine out, and put one plant in a pot. I didn't put any on my compost pile, because I have had mint grow in there before, and was afraid that would happen with the lemon balm.

I have a separate place next to my compost pile that I put a lot of dead heads and plants that spread, so that if they start to grow, I can take care of it right there, and not have it all over the garden.

Well, I have some lemon balm that somehow got started at the entry to my veggie garden a couple years ago next to the black eyed Susan that also got started there, not by me. It is getting larger each year, so I'm going to have to do something about that. I do cut it back to keep it from blooming. The other day, I decided to make some tea using the method I've been using with mint.

The lemon balm is on the right.

My method of making mint or lemon balm tea:

Put sprigs of mint or lemon balm in a gallon jar, with or without 2 or 3 decaf tea bags. (I just remembered I also made some the other day with pineapple sage sprigs the other day.)

Pour some water the temperature you would use to make hot tea into the jar and let it steep 5 to 10 minutes. (I usually add enough water heated in my electric tea pot to submerge the leaves and stems, but it still turned out fine with some poking out.)

Remove the leaves and tea bags, add cold water to the jar, and refrigerate.

Have a blessed Sunday!

It's Butterfly Time!

I'm posting these from a couple days ago for Camera Critters, which is on Saturdays. There is a blog to go to to see more posts or to find out how to include yours.

I forgot to include the dill, larkspur, and verbena bon...(on a stick) in my blooming posts. Monarchs are usually pretty shy around me, so I started taking photos before seeing how close I could get.

I've been checking the dill in the veggie garden, and finally have a couple caterpillars.

(Scroll down to see Blooming Friday and SkyWatch posts.)

Friday, June 26, 2009

Blooming Friday Part 2

I'm sad that our local daylily growers went out of business last year, and by the time Larry and I got to their dig your own sale, an hour after it had started, they had very little left. Most of what was, was not labeled, or was just labeled with a number. The first one shown here is one we dug up to bring home. The others were from the man who was having a used book store in a house that was about to be torn down. He let me dig some iris and daylilies for a donation, because he couldn't sell them to me, as he used to be registered to sell them.

Hello Yellow Butterfly Milkweed, daylilies that were my mother-in-laws growing in some grass, blanket flower, and Helen's flower, which is blooming earlier than usual:

Lead plant, Harvest Moon coneflower, Coreopsis 'Zagreb', wild petunia, allium of some kind, I think native, Magnus coneflower, and a ruffly aisy I got at Menards last year. I remember pointing out to a lady we should buy one that has blooms not open yet, rather than one that has a lot of deadheads, so the plant can grow some, and we will get to enjoy the flowers longer. She did a good job picking one out.

Enjoy your weekend!

It's Blooming Friday (Part 1)

Someone on the Cottage Garden Forum posted a photo of what I think is Queen Anne's Lace, so I'm posting a photo of my plant, (the tall one with white flowers that I picked and hung to dry, while more are getting ready to open) and one of the flowers for her to compare hers to. While I'm at it, I put some of the 30 some photos I wanted to post. I'll put the rest in collages when I get a chance. Last week was the first time I participated in Blooming Friday, hosted by Roses and Stuff. I called it Friday's Blooms, and Katarina was gracious and did not correct me.

We are picking up our grandson from childcare, and he is spending the night, so I am not going to label all of the photos, but if you want to know what something is, ask.

Kim's Knee High coneflower, which is up to the middle of my thigh, and I am 5 foot 7 inches:

White Swan coneflower, which is not white anymore, and paprika yarrow:

Wood Betony:

Stoke's Aster:

This is a red yarrow, not the paprika:

I had to include a photo of my new daylily, Wally looking so grand:

I've never grown drumstick alliums before. These aren't the color I thought they'd be, but I like them.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Pictures Taken for SkyWatch Friday from York, NE

My brother-in-law traded his vehicle in for another, and I decided to buy it to avoid having to pay to get my breaks worked on on my 1994 van. York is about an hour from where I live, so Saturday, I took my camera in tow to get some sky pics.

This is what is across the street:

This is behind the dealership.

This is the owner, Steve Moses, visiting with his cousin, my husband, as he was waiting for me to finish taking pictures, so we could go home. On Monday, there was a severe storm with hail. The crops and the cars were damaged, but my van was spared because it was in the detail shop. (Behind the van is the 2005 Ford Escape I bought. I had planned on getting something smaller, but with my gardening and grandson, it will be a good vehicle for me.

We stopped for lunch a short drive away. There is another farm field on the other side of the motel.

This is also near the motel. Another shot had both the "balloon" and motel in it.

For more skies from all over the world, or to find out how to post yours, go to the SkyWatchFriday blog. I am about to be #211 on the list!

Close ups of Back Yard

I just went out and figured out which basils these are that I had planted from seed inside. They are Marseille, Genovese, and Greco. I hope these pots are large enough.

There are some annual black eyed Susan, red salvia, and more herbs.

Larry doesn't pick out many plants, but he wants to grow several snail vines every year. I put these 2 in a pot that had some violas that had self sown. I sure am enjoying them!

There is Thai Siam Queen planted with parsley in the pot on the left. Next, is lemon grass, pineapple sage, and lemon verbena. The pot on the far right has onion and garlic chives, and parsley.

Oxalis and a begonia:

One of Larry's 2 water gardens:

I'm excited to see what the bloom on this Rigid Goldenrod will look like. It's almost too late to harvest some of the lavender. I need to see about what I can dry yet.

I like these Magnus coneflowers and asters.

If you click on this photo, you'll see the potatoes in my garden across the street to the left of the garage. I can't remember what kind of rudbeckia the plant on the left is, but I had to support it, because it was falling down. The hollyhock is one that was planted by its parent or birds.

This coneflower was one I moved as a volunteer seedling. The aster was also moved from another spot.

These variegated false sunflowers were moved from the front of the house because I didn't like them there. They don't seem to have minded being moved when they were very small.

I planted one of the snail vines in the ground in front of the little girl.

There are goldenrods and liatrises in the ground.

I had this citrus blend lantana in the ground last year. I hope this grows as well as that did.

I am experimenting with different kinds of potato vines to see what they taste like. I plant 99% of my own pots, giving them room to fill in. This pot is next to the previous one.

It's Thursday, and I forgot to post my SkyWatch post! I have photos for it, too. Well, have a good Friday!