Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Naked Americans

Yesterday, my daughter had a "Thanksgiving Feast" at school. She called Grandma to tell her all about it. She described her costume, a headband and faux leather vest, decked out with feathers. "Grandma, Grandma!!" she said, "I was a Naked American!"

Happy Thanksgiving, All You Naked Americans!!!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Shock and Awe

So I went out today expecting total death and destruction of all my plants from 4 days of freezing temperatures. Especially since I did just about nothing to protect any of my plants. What did I find instead?


What the . . ? Even the ginger is blooming.

After a bit of hunting, I found some coleus that took a beating, but is still ticking.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Freeze Tonight


Sunday, November 16, 2008

There's Always One . . .

Look what popped up in my "white" snapdragons.
In my brilliance of buying discount gingers yesterday, I failed to actually look at the weather. No planting with freezes on the way. It's not cold enough to worry about covering the plants, but at 33 degrees, I have to pull in all the unestablished babies, just in case. So the gingers have to stay in their pots a little longer. (No wonder they were so cheap . . . ) It's a dilemma for me because I'm a notoriously bad container gardener. Frankly, when it comes to gardening, Mother Nature does all the heavy lifting, I just let her know where I want things. When plants go into containers and are dependant on me to actually water them, they don't do so well. With the time change making it dark when I get home, it is even harder to remember to care for them. So I don't like to keep any more containers than I have to. With any luck, I won't kill the gingers before I get them in the ground.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Kenny's Place

For ages now, the Nursery Nazi has been telling me about a great nursery across town called Kenny's Place. They are always clean and she's never found a pest or disease problem there. Better yet, they employ mentally handicapped people in the community and teach them job skills in horticulture. She says they assist customers with their plants and are very friendly and smiling. (I joked she only likes the place because its the only nursery in town that has employees actually happy to see her.) They also have gingers and other exotics galore. Yesterday, we finally made the trip.

The nursery is small and unimposing from the outside, but once you get out and walk around, you quickly realize it has a huge amount of plants you can't easily get anywhere else.

And, (cue the angels singing. . . ) this is the GINGER SECTION! It goes on forever! I was a kid in a candy shop and wanted one of everything. From what I've seen, this is toward the end of their inventory of the year. I would have died to have been here back in August.

Another neat thing about the nursery was it was also an inadvertent butterfly garden. They where everywhere, and monarchs, which I've never seen in Florida before. They had more butterflies there than I've seen at many "butterfly exhibits" I've been to.

Now for the stash:

Here is what I got: 1 Blood Lily, 4 Globba Ginger, and 2 Hedychium coccineum 'Disney' gingers All for the amazing price of, hold on to your hats people, $23 dollars! Including tax! (If you don't think this such a great price, go ahead and price one tuber of the Disney ginger. Even on Ebay it is way more expensive. And each of these pots has several tubers.) A trip to Kenny's Place may become a weekly pilgrimage.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Sholom Park

Today we went to one of my favorite spots, Sholom Park. The name implies that it might be a specifically religious place and I've met someone who thought it was a cemetery. It is actually a meditative park and gardens. They discourage pets, disruptive play and don't really encourage joggers, although you occasionally see them. It is a place that encourages quite contemplation of nature and the world. Kinda cool, really.

A little courtyard looks out on to the surrounding countryside.

I don't know what kind of tree this is, maybe a crepe myrtle? I love the bark though. Looks like giraffes.
This is the rose garden. Normally it is filled with roses and camellias, but I think
I hit it in between blooms. It was a bit of a flower hunt.
Found one!

A Florida vista.

A lily in the pond.

The tropical garden, like mine, is starting to fade. I should find out if they need volunteers. Unfortunately, most garden clubs meet on like Tuesday morning, which pretty much excludes anyone who works for a living. This little garden cemented my love for tropicals. My heart fluttered a bit when I saw it. It was full of gingers. One spiral ginger had fuzzy new leaves that I could have petted all day.

I think this is a ginger, but I'm not sure. I'd love a positive ID. It was the only thing blooming and it was really pretty.

The park has a bunch of signs throughout the paths that make you stop and think about your surroundings. I could see this one on my tombstone.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008



I don't have to move to Canada!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(Nothing against Canada. My plants would just do terribly there.)

Election Night

I'm online tonight, watching the results. Leave a comment and we'll celebrate or commiserate together.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

This Blog is for Pansies!

Halloween, at least down here in Florida, seems to indicate the end of summer even more than the traditional Labor day. When the weather is still in the 80's, it seems like summer will never end. But now that we've seen frosts, and my gingers are quickly fading, I have to admit that even here, it does come to an end. This year, my goal is to have year round flowers. After a few small experiments last year, I'm going full on with pansies and snapdragons. Yesterday I bought Majestic Giant Pansies (above) for the corner garden and white snapdragons for the front garden. Both of these plants can take a couple of frosts, even freezes, when many of my other plants die back. I'll be adding more in the next month. I was hoping to find seeds to make this mission a bit cheaper, but I think pansy seeds are one of those things you only see when you don't want them. Truth be told, pansies aren't really my style. A bit old fashioned for me. But when January comes around, beggars can't be choosers. I was disappointed at the selection. I REALLY wanted black pansies that were so plentiful in the spring for Halloween, but now they were nowhere to be found. I also wanted those neat tricolored snapdragons that glow pink, orange and yellow. I was lucky to find any pansies, which just seems crazy to me. Nurseries instead seemed to be big on getting rid of their impatiens which have only have a few more weeks in them at best. Well, I've learned my lesson. In the spring I'll raid the seed cataloges and keep seeds for August/September sowing. Until then, purple and white will be ruling for a while.

This kitty seems to have adopted us. It has been hanging around for the last week. Tonight my husband fed it. Do you know how much trouble I would have been in if I fed it? I guess a name is next. . .
She doesn't seem to understand why we won't let her in. She is pretty cute and pathetic looking. How do you say no?

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Monsters in the Garden

What do you do when there are monsters in the garden?

Wait a while. They'll go to sleep eventually.

Halloween was fun, if a bit low key this year. Our parents all came over for food and hung out to entertain trick-or-treaters while the monster and I took the little monster out to make the rounds. The little one was a cutest witch ever:
Overall it was a fun night. (Oh, and thanks for the comments on our anniversary. Two years and counting! Our Halloween story is here. )

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