Saturday, March 28, 2009

Colorful foliage

Good morning everyone. It is mild, breezy and partly cloudy out this morning. I will be heading off to work later, so not much time to play in the gardens today. I will go out and put the sprinklers on, as it is one of my two days to water with them.

In a garden forum there was a thread about colorful foliage and that's the inspiration for this post today.

Colorful foliage adds much beauty to our gardens. I sometimes take them for granted, since I want to see all colors of the rainbow in my gardens. These shrubs and plants are colorful all year long down here.

First off, are the coleus. Here is what Wikipedia has to say about them.

Solenostemon is a genus of perennial plants, native to tropical Africa, Asia, Australia, the East Indies, the Malay Archipelago, and the Philippines. They are commonly known as Coleus, a name which derives from an earlier classification under the genus name Coleus, species of which are currently included in either Solenostemon or another genus, Plectranthus.

Then we have copperleaf ~ Acalypha wilkesiana macafeana.

Copperleaf, sometimes referred to as beefsteak plant, attracts attention with its unusual, colorful variegated leaves. The large leaves are mottled in red, copper and pink. The color varies from leaf to leaf and appear as if someone randomly colored the areas between the veins. It resembles some large-leafed coleus cultivars, however, the leaves are not uniformly variegated like coleus leaves. Although it is grown for its foliage, it does produce long, slender spikes of greenish-pink flowers. For more information, visit Copperleaf Plant

Next we have Snow on the Mountain, or Snow Bush. ~ Snow bush? Yes - snowbush is a tropical plant that is well adapted to our Florida Yards, but will not survive areas with freezing temperatures. It is named because if gives the appearance of its leaves being covered with that cold white stuff – the green leaves are spotted and splotched with white, and pink and purple are sometimes blended in for an additional surprise of color.

For more info click on Snow Bush.

Next we have colorful, tropical crotons, Codiaeum Variegatum.

Codiaeum Variegatum was first introduced to America by the Henry A Dreer nursery in the 1870's. They are grown for their dazzling leaves which may include crimson, scarlet, pink, yellow, brown, and orange shades, as well as green, white and cream. For more info click on

We have 3 or 4 different ones.

That's if for this morning from tropical s.e. FL. Hope you all have a great weekend playing in your gardens if the weather permits.


Monday, March 23, 2009

Living in the Moment

I receive a newsletter from Terry Hershey Sabbath Moments

I am uplifted as I read these newsletters and today's had some more good thoughts on living in the moments that make up our days.

It is something to ponder as we hurry/scurry through our days. We need to make and take time to fully live in each moment we are blessed with. We have no idea when our last moment could be.

Here are a couple of thoughts on living moment to moment from today's newsletter.

Drink your tea slowly and reverently,

As if it is the axis on which the whole earth revolves-

Slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future.

Thich Nhat Hanh


We do not commonly live our life out and full;

we do not fill all our pores with our blood;

we do not inspire and expire fully and entirely enough. . .

We live but a fraction of our life.

Why do we not let on the flood,

raise the gates,

and set all our wheels in motion?

Henry David Thoreau


Below is an uplifting piece from youtube, Stand By Me. Enjoy.


Saturday, March 21, 2009

First Day of Spring

Good morning everyone ~ Hope your first weekend of spring is filled with wonderful outdoor projects.

Yesterday was the first day of spring, it was also my birthday. My 60th. DH is taking me to Morikami Gardens for my bday. We were going to go this past week, but we have been having some much needed rain, which postponed the event. Hopefully, we can go next week. Everything will look better after all this rain. Read about Morikami Gardens here.

It has been raining again this morning. I'm working at my job again today as I did yesterday, so no gardening for me. I did pick some blue pea vine seed pods though, and yesterday took some pictures which are shown below.

I know all of you are thrilled that spring has sprung and I wish you bounteous, beautiful gardens this year.

Happy Gardening ~ FlowerLady

Below is my main garden.
The paths in and around my garden are roll roofing material.
Inexpensive and works great.

This is my blue bottle bouquet with the shrub Thunbergia.

This is a yellow firecracker plant. I also have the red. This yellow one is one of the last plants I bought last spring. It goes great in the old Mizner flowerpots. I have two of these pots. I think we paid $5 each, or $5 for the pair, many years ago, at a yard sale.
They are heavy concrete from the 40's or earlier.

This is a Duchesse de Brabant bud, growing among crotons and azaleas.

This is a bougainvillea. Very pretty with it's blush color.

This is a wild orchid which grows with little effort on my part.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Garlic-Herb Bread

Garlic-Herb Bread

This is a bread machine recipe.
Makes 1.5 lb. loaf

1 1/4 c. water
1 tbs. olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
3 1/4 c. bread flour
2 tbs. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. Italian herb blend
1 1/2 tsp. yeast

1. Measure and add liquid ingredients to the bread pan.

2. Measure, mix together and add dry ingredients (except yeast) to the bread pan.

3. Use your finger to form a well (hole) in the flour where you will pour the yeast.
Yeast must NEVER come into contact with a liquid when you are adding ingredients.
Measure the yeast and carefully pour it into the well/hole.

4. Snap the baking pan into the breadmaker and close the lid.

5. Press "select" button to choose the Basic setting.

6. Press the "crust color" button to choose light, medium or dark crust.

7. Press the "Start/Stop" button.

This recipe is from the little cookbook
that came with my Oster 2.b Expressbake Breadmaker.

This smells wonderful while baking and is delicious also.

I made this earlier so that we would have bread for sandwiches tomorrow.



"Farmer, is the harvest ready
For we must have bread?"
"Go and look at all my fields,"
Is what the farmer said.

So we ran and saw the wheat
Standing straight and tall.
"There's your bread," the farmer said.
"Have no fear at all."

"Miller, is the flour ready
For we must have bread?"
"Go and look in all my sacks,"
Is what the miller said.

So we ran and saw the flour,
Soft and white as snow.
"There's your four," the miller said,
As we turned to go.

"Mother, is the oven ready
For we must have bread?"
"Go and open wide the door,"
Is what our mother said.

So we ran and saw the loaves
Crisp and brown to see.
"There's your bread," our mother said,
"Ready for your tea."

H.E. Wilkinson
Taken from: The Book of 1,000 Poems.

Another drippy day

Here it is another wet, drippy day, but it looks like the sky is trying to clear up, and we are only having light drizzles. The rain that we've had the past couple of days has been great.

I got to do fun stuff like vacuuming, dusting, etc. indoors. I registered online to open an Etsy shop. This morning I've been downloading free vintage crochet patterns, as that is one type of needlework that I will be having in my shop.

This morning while it was lightly drizzling I went out with my camera and took a few pictures. They aren't the best as I was trying to keep the camera from getting wet, but here they are.

I love spiderwort. They are spreading everywhere and I don't care. I can dig them up and put them where I want them. I just love the shade of blue and that they are so easy to grow. Some think of it as a weed, I look at it as a blue jewel.

Here is spiderwort in the foreground, the big leaves right behind are chicory, grown from seed last year and I'm looking forward to those wonderful blue blooms too. Behind that is a bloom of Maggie. She's a wonderful old garden rose.

Below is the rose Vincent Godsiff. It is such a vibrant color that sometimes it is almost hard to look at. There are ferns in the background, and also you can see some peach salvia blooms.

Here is a close up of it.

Have a wonderful spring ~ FlowerLady

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Liquid Sunshine

Today we have had 'liquid sunshine', otherwise known as 'rain'. It started last night, we woke up to it and have had heavy downpours at times throughout the day. No thunder and lightening was wonderful, as that's usually the case for us down here, lots of T & L.

This morning I took a couple of pictures, the first one being the first picture I took and he/she was another happy being to have the rain.

The rain will do wonders. I am thankful.


Monday, March 16, 2009

Space Shuttle

Last evening we went outside to do something and I turned around facing north, looked up and gasped, then yelled. There was the shuttle with a beautiful sunset colored tail. It was awesome, it was exciting. But alas, I did NOT have my camera on my neck, it was almost dark and we had forgotten about the launch anyway. There are no words to describe it. We watched until we could no longer see the shuttle with the sun glancing off of it.

How easy it is to miss glorious moments. How easy it is to experience them. Just like that. We had gone out to take a measurement and saw a wonderful sight. If we hadn't gotten the idea to go out and do some measuring we would have missed that experience.

Sorry there is no picture with this posting. The picture is in my mind.

Have a great day everyone. Be open to unexpected, wonderful experiences.


Saturday, March 14, 2009

Thank you ~ my 100th post

Good morning everyone ~ It is another gorgeous day here. This is my 100th post and I want to say thank you to all who have visited, and those who have left comments also. I enjoy blogging and visiting and reading other blogs as well. I am inspired, encouraged and have been helped with info, thoughts and feelings that you all share.

Here are some pictures taken this morning. I am thankful to God, the Great Creator for yet another beautiful day.


May you listen to your longing to be free.

May the frames of your belonging
be large enough for the dreams of your soul.

May you arise each day with a voice of blessing
whispering in your heart

...something good is going to happen to you.

May you find harmony
between your soul and your life.

May the mansion of your soul
never become a haunted place.

May you know the eternal longing
that lies at the heart of time.

May there be kindness in your gaze
when you look within.

May you never place walls
between the light and yourself.

May you be set free
from the prisons of guilt, fear,
disappointment and despair.

May you allow the wild beauty of the invisible world
to gather you,
mind you,
and embrace you in belonging.

John O'Donahoe

Monday, March 9, 2009

I love roses

Many years ago I was told roses did not grow in Florida, I'm glad I did not listen to that bit of false info. I bought my first rose at a local flea market probably 20-25 years ago. It was Louis Phillipe which is shown below. Since then I've made many plants from cuttings of this first plant. It is considered a Florida Cracker Rose.

Here it is growing up and over my shed along with a bougainvillea of almost the same color. This rose is very hardy, has a nice scent, and blooms almost all year long. It is resistant to black spot and mildew.

My rose collection has grown over the years. Although, I have not bought any in 2-3 years now, as they are expensive. I am taking cuttings from favorite roses of mine for new plants.

This picture below was taken late yesterday afternoon. I was surprised to see the roses, and they are on the front side of our hedgerow. They are nestled in one type of jasmine that smells just wonderful. The scent fills the air right now. These roses are Duchesse de Brabant. I've made several plants of this rose also from cuttings.

This next one is Old Blush climber, taken on a rare foggy morning earlier this year. It is also growing up and over my shed buy on the north/west side.

Old garden roses are the best, as they are more hardy that modern hybrids. Once you buy one, you'll be wanting more. There are many out there. These are just some of my collection. I'll post more of them later.

I will close with the following from, 'The Rose Book ~ How to Grow Roses Oranically & Use Them in over 50 Beautiful Crafts' by Maggie Oster.

"Roses ~ for all the love and admiration they receive ~ are misunderstood and misused in the garden. They have an undeserved reputation for being difficult to grow, which ~ couple with expectations placed on them ~ keep entirely too many people from discovering that having roses in their yard not only is highly rewarding, but also requires no more effort than growing, healthy, productive tomato plants. By rethinking roses to take advantage of their versatility throughout our yards and homes, we can give ourselves a most satisfying gift."

The roses below are Penelope.

There should be

beds of Roses,

banks of Roses,

bowers of Roses,

hedges of Roses,

edgings of roses,

pillars of Roses,

arches of Roses,

fountains of Roses,

baskets of Roses,

vistas and alleys of the Rose.

S. Reynolds Hole ~ A Book About Roses ~ 1895

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Thought for today

At the heart of God's presence

is love.

Love for each of us,

both as we are

and as we can be.

From the book: Seeking a Simpler Spirit by Deborah DeFord

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Each day

"Each day comes bearing its own gifts.

Untie the ribbons."

Ruth Ann Schabaker

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Our latest project

Good morning everyone. We've been working on a project since last Thursday. This project came about because someone came into our property while we were sleeping a couple of nights before. We knew this because the cable with a no trespassing sign that hangs across our driveway was down, and the door to one of our vehicles was left open. We figure it was a lost drunk, as they have stumbled into our property up front before to sleep it off. Having them in our back yard was not nice at all. That is our space.

We had some sections of privacy fencing that we had curbside shopped, when someone took theirs down and cut it into 16" to 36" sections, more or less. They had lots of life left in them, also an aged patina, so we loaded them into our van and have had them stashed and use them as needed.

I know some could not, would not use this fencing, because it doesn't look so great, but heck once new fencing is up for awhile it will look the same. We are not 'normal', we live frugally and simply and we are recyclers and hate to see usable stuff go to the landfill. We already have fencing we put up years ago, that this fencing just blended into. Once the plant life has filled out and taken over, by twining, covering, etc. you won't see most of the fencing anyway. What is so nice, is the privacy and enclosed feeling that it adds. We already had most of the front enclosed, this just finished it off.

We are in a severe drought that's why you see so much sand. I only water my gardens and beds to keep things alive, grass doesn't matter. Once we get rain again, it will all come back.

Below are two pictures before.

This picture if taken after. We still have an arbor/rooflet to make over the gate, but we are working on the driveway gates first.

You can see a 'Faux Bois' (false wood in French), chair, sitting in the shade. Friends of ours, who own the antique shop next to the one I manage, gave us these, as they needed a lot of work and they didn't want to mess with it. They bought these in France. These are more primitive rather than grand as some of the really great Faux Bois pieces are. We are more primitive and rustic than grand, that's for sure, so these fit in really well with our style.

Here is a little info about Faux Bois. ~ Ferrocement Faux Bois is a very popular and much sought after category among serious antique collectors. One of the most notable of whom is Martha Stewart, who collects antique as well as modern works executed by the very few remaining artisans still practicing this craft. Sadly, there are only a handful of artisans alive today who are capable of executing Faux Bois at the masterwork level.

For more info go here Faux Bois in Concrete

Also The Artistic Garden

I did tighten up the rock/boulder border and planted some things.

This is our driveway with the cable going across it. You can see another curbside shopped piece hanging on our back fence. It is 10' long by 4' high. I told you we aren't normal, and this will probably prove it for sure. The fish is made out of fiberglass. I am a Pisces, so we brought this monster home.

That's it for now. We're off to work on the lattice/pvc pipe gates for the driveway. Will post about them later.


Sunday, March 1, 2009

Thought for Today

For in him (God) we live,

and move,

and have our being

Act 17:28