Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving from Plum Cottage


Hello Folks ~ Here it is the day before Thanksgiving here in the US and I want to wish you all a lovely time of good food, good times and being thankful. Thankful not just for the good, but for the rough, hard and anguished times too.  Through those times we grow and learn to appreciate so much.

I am thankful to God for all of you and for how you have blessed me with your love, prayers and friendship these past two years since my dear husband left this planet for his heavenly home.

I am thankful to God for drawing me closer to Him.  He has been and continues to be my strength. He has blessed me in many ways.

I am thankful for my gardens here, they really help in the healing process.

I am thankful for my little cottage, and for the meal I am preparing for tomorrow.  It will be a nice quiet, reflective day, something we always enjoyed together and is part of the healing that continues each day for me.

In the last two weeks, I’ve learned of two blogging friends who have lost their husbands. I ask you to send love and prayers out for them. Toodie of Twiddeldee and Freda of Defining Your Home, Garden & Travel. They both are in a very rough patch right now as their losses are so new and great.

Gardening as you all know, is a big part of my life, more so now after losing my best friend and soulmate, the love of my life. Healing happens in my gardens.  My heart and soul are soothed. I am continuing to make it a haven, a place where I talk to my Creator and enjoy His creation.

The past couple of days I’ve been watching episodes of ‘Love Your Garden’ on You-Tube.  The one I watched this morning really touched my heart as it was a garden created to be solace to a family.   When you have some time, watch the making of this lovely space for this family to heal and move forward.

In an episode I watched yesterday a garden was being created for a 90 year old lady.  She said she mowed her own lawn up until she was 89. It got too hard for her to start the mower and do the work, then her garden became ‘tatty’ as the people in England say. Oh my I’m only 65, if I live to be her age, I’ve still got 24 years to go, God willing. (I do plan on buying an electric lawn mower next year, which will help me a lot. The gas one takes tugging at least three times to get it started and that is a wear out before I even get started.)

So, that’s it for now. I hope you all have lovely holidays. I’m going to start filling this little place with delicious scents.

Thank you again for being my friends.



Gratitude is an art

of painting an adversity

into a lovely picture.

Kak Sri

Saturday, November 22, 2014

A Blues Dispeller ~ Part 2


Good morning Folks ~ Well, I chose the perfect day to go to the Mounts Botanical Gardens.  Tuesday and Wednesday were gray with some rain, and yesterday it rained off and on all day long.

Let me refill my coffee cup and I’ll be right back to get started on this post. Ok, I’m back and just checked the weather and it is 75 and feels like it is 72, at 5:06 a.m. EST. More showers are expected today and each day through Thanksgiving. It is breezy too with 20mph winds from the east.

I can’t even imagine how the people up north are dealing with all of that over abundance of snow. I wouldn’t be able to handle it.  I’ve lived down here since 1960 and am a barefoot lady most of the time.  Anyway, I am thankful for our fall/winter/spring weather down here, summers are the pits though.

Now, back to my ‘Blues Dispeller’ at the botanical gardens the other day.

When I saw this Brugmansia or Angel’s Trumpets I could hardly believe it and was thrilled to say the least. This was what was scenting the air as I started my garden walk. This tree was at least 8’ tall and probably as wide.


Here are some blooms for you closer up. 

They are probably about 8-10 inches long, maybe longer.


These were in the rose garden area, which didn’t have much going on it right now as far as roses being in bloom. The yellow at the beginning and the white as I was heading down the path near the exit to this part of the beautiful gardens.  This white one was almost hanging to the ground. I almost backed up and went back around, but said to myself, nope, I’m going to bed over and walk through these wonderful blooms and I did.




This Brugmansia was in a different area. Amazing at the size of it and all of those wonderful blooms.


These next two photos are taken in the ‘Herb Garden’ area.

This is African Blue Basil. Here is a link telling about it. Mine is just a little baby right now. Once it starts growing, I want to take cuttings to make more plants.  It is supposed to be easy, by just starting the cuttings in water. Smile 


Here we have rosemary.  What a great display of this wonderful herb. This was the central focal point of the garden.


In this photo below, I am looking toward to the ‘Butterfly Garden’. It is my favorite garden here.  There were LOTS of butterflies hovering around too, but I didn’t capture any to share here.  Maybe next time.

You enter the little garden through the arbor. I have some of what is growing in this garden and want to get more, of course. I do have lots of butterflies visiting my gardens, but would like to draw in different kinds.




Here are a couple of ‘cats’ on a rue plant.


This is a path back near the airport strip, leading to the ‘Cottage Garden’ area which was actually kind of sparse, considering it is November I guess. There were things to see, but this will be much better during the spring. This path goes on around and then back out to main path.


This is a birdhouse in the ‘Cottage Garden’ area.


This is the Dombeya burgessiae (Seminole), or Hydrangea Tree. I bought a little one, about 6-8 inches tall. Here is a link for it. Mine, has a head of blooms on it already and I can hardly wait for it to bloom. I was amazed at the height and width of this plant.


Here are two photos of the veggie garden which is huge. This garden also looks better in the spring, but it still looks pretty darn good the end of November.



Well, that’s it for this post. I believe, there is one more post to do for this wonderful botanical garden from this visit.  I hope you have enjoyed this one.


 A garden recreates itself daily;

we seldom step in the same garden thrice.

Quote taken from: Garden Digest 

Friday, November 21, 2014

A Blues Dispeller ~ part 1

Good Friday morning to you all from s.e. FL. Thank you all for comments on flowers, needlework and my email/computer problems.  Still don’t have the latter quite figured out but life goes on.

Yesterday morning I was really depressed, (computer woes, missing Mark, holidays coming, gray days, and a couple of other things that have me feeling down). I was going to do errands, but needed to DO something out of my everydayness, so, with the weather being a perfect day for it, I visited the Mounts Botanical Gardens, which is about 20 minutes away.

I took a back route to avoid heavy traffic, and just pulling into the parking lot was a respite from everyday life. Walking through the entry, I put my donation in the box and was blasted with scents, sounds of splashing and colors.  Gentle cool breezes.  It was wonderful, and I kept oohing and aahing and telling God thank you, for it was just what I needed. A quiet, lovely break. This fountain greets you right off with its gentle sounds.


This is another fountain, very soothing too.


I took 59 pictures. I’ll go again for more, maybe next week if the weather is still good.  But in this post I’m going to tantalize you with ‘long views’.  This place is so nicely kept.  Lots of work by volunteers. There weren’t many people around which added to the peacefulness.  This is right next to the flight path of the big international airport, so there are planes flying over now and then. This was just a small jet that was heading in for a landing. The airport is across the highway from the gardens.












One thing I was looking forward to was the ‘nursery’ at the back of the gardens where baby plants are sold very reasonably. I’ve been hearing about it, just never made it there.  The last time I visited here was March for my birthday last year.

Below is the entry way into the area.


I bought 2 Yucatan daisies, a red Porterweed, a Mexican blue sage, a Cuban yellow buttercup, and a beautiful Hydrangea tree, Dombeya burgessiae (Seminole), only about 8-10 inches tall with buds on it already.  I was given a baby African Blue Basil. One thing about going here is you can see what is growing in the gardens, then see if they have any outback for sale.

Below is a picture of the flowers of the Yucatan Daisy. It is fast growing and can get huge and full of flowers. I’ll show the other babies as they grow and bloom. The next time I go, I want to get a couple of Barbados cherry plants.  The flowers look sort of like crepe myrtles, but these get very beneficial cherries for humans and birds like them too.  They are very high in Vit. C, and are antioxidant. I’ve read they have a sweet/sour taste.


After I got home, had lunch and a nap, I repotted the plants. It will be fun watching them all grow and bloom, adding more beauty to my little, humble ‘Plum Cottage’ gardens.  I walked around a bit and was very appreciative to God for all that He has blessed me with. Working in my own gardens are therapeutic for me.

It is a gray, drizzly morning. Yesterday was the perfect day for my outing, and my blues were chased away on the gentle breezes.


"There is a calmness
to a life lived in gratitude,
a quiet joy."

Ralph H. Blum

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I have a big fat GRIPE ……


Against YAHOO mail!  For a month or more, I’ve been having lots of problems with this account.  I’ve Googled about it and thousands are having problems too.  Today more mail disappeared out of my email box.

I’m not the computer geek.  DH was that! 

I then switched over to gmail, but can’t use that account as my primary account for blogger!  I went to my bellsouth acct. and that sends me right to Yahoo mail.  I am very discouraged and aggravated!

Can any of you give me some tips as to what to do?

Grumbling ~ FlowerLady

P.S. Link to my last post about flowers, etc. posted this morning.

Rain, chilly temps, roses, flowers, hearts

Rain, chilly temps, roses, flowers, hearts

Good morning Folks ~ Well, we’ve got a ‘cold front’ down here in s.e. FL.  This morning it is lightly raining, and the temp is 56 and feels like it is 51.  I think it’s supposed to only get up around 70 as the high, and be cloudy all day.  Nothing like what is happening up north though.  The cooler weather for us down here is a blessing.  Monday evening around 5 it was 87 degrees and did NOT feel like November at all. Today it does. 

I took some photos of ‘Kathleen’ my sweet little rose I’ve had for many, many years.  I recently took some cuttings from her and hope they will root for me. Time will tell.  I just re-read a good post on rooting roses by Connie of Hartwood Roses. How To Root Roses From Cuttings. I didn’t do my cuttings like she did as I had forgotten about this post of hers until she mentioned it in her latest post.  It is very good and easy to understand.  She is NOT a novice at growing roses like I am, she is a PRO.

Click photos for larger views.





This lovely rose is ‘Crepuscule’, a recent addition to my gardens.  I had this years ago, but she croaked and it is wonderful to have her again.  I bought her from Rose Petal Nursery, which is in northern Florida.


This is ‘Louis Philippe’ which was one of the first roses I bought many, many years ago. I bought ‘Caldwell’s Pink’ at the same time, at a local flea market. I just lost Caldwell’s Pink last year I think.


This is ‘Penelope’ which I’ve had a long time too.  The buds start out a nice peachy color and the older the bloom is it turns to white.


This is ‘Rose de Rescht’, a gift from online friends last year.  This one has a deep, lovely, old rose scent.


I think this is ‘Picnic’.  It is what it was called at the nursery where I got it.  I have not been able to find a rose by this name by Googling.


This is an unknown that I bought last year from a local nursery.


Here are some blooms from my ‘Lilac Tree, or Lancepod Tree’. I planted this as a seed in 2010. It’ is now about 8 ft. tall. Blooms way over my head.  I pulled down a branch to get a photo and to also be able to smell the scent.  The scent is wonderful!!!



Below is the ‘Garlic Vine’ that has grown from a seed and vined along to climb up the tropical shrubs at the back of my shed.  The foliage smells like garlic when brushed against.







Next are my two latest needleworked hearts.

This one is 3 1/2 inches by 3 1/2 inches.  Bugle beads, seed beads, two crystal beads, and a neat glass flower bead. Edged with a crocheted/beaded edging. Smile This heart took 4 1/4 hours to make.




The flowers below are ribbon embroidery using white and cream silk ribbon, 4mm and 2mm sizes. Then I colored them with my alcohol ink markers. This little heart is 3 inches by 3 inches.



Well, that’s it for this post.

May you all have a wonderful holiday season.