Friday, April 7, 2017

April blooms and life ~ Photo heavy

Hi Folks ~ Here it is another Friday in 2017. This week has zipped right along. Actually, this year is whizzing by pretty fast.

It is neat to see via your blogs, your gardens waking up after a long winter sleep. I can feel you excitement and joy. For me down here in the sub tropics of FL our gardens never sleep. We do have some trees that bloom in the spring and they are very pretty, but, for the most part we have flowers and colors all year long. Summers are pretty brutal and things can dry up or fry up because of the heat. We are in need of rain where I am. It keeps being predicted, but we’ve had nothing, so I use my sprinkler on alloted days and handwater whenever plants in containers need a good drink.

Monday morning I woke up feeling sad and after breakfast I decided to take the last of my gift $ and get some pretties for my secret garden. There is one nursery close to me that I just love. It’s called ‘Green Gate Nursery’. Been in the same location for 28 years, but I didn’t find it until a year or so ago. I don’t usually take that route and it is tucked away between buildings. They sell flowering plants that attract butterflies and they have a great variety which you don’t find in the big box stores.  The staff is friendly and helpful. They do know the majority of the names of plants but some even the owner didn’t know the name of.

The weather was perfect, in fact, it’s been lovely all week, and last night we had a last bit of chilly weather, and will have another bit tonight. Yay!

So, here are some glimpses of Green Gate Nursery.





In the picture below, pink flowering plant in the center, you will see my first pick.


Here are photos of it and I think you’ll see why I had to have it. No real name for this, they just called it a ‘tea’ rose. The scent is wonderful and the blooms oh so pretty. They are clusters of small blooms.








Sweet Almond bush with some Candy Corn flowers showing too. I forgot to take a photo of the candy corn plant itself. The sweet almond scent is fantastic.


This is one they didn’t know the name of. I hope someone will be able to identify it for me.



This is another one that didn’t have a name. The blooms are what caught my eye, but I forgot to take a picture the first day I went there and went I went back earlier the next morning no buds were open yet. Sad smile This plant is a rooted cutting from the huge plant the flowers were on. I can hardly wait to get some blooms myself. Hopefully someone will be able to identify this one for me also.


This is a bloom that had fallen off and I cut it open so the inside could be seen. The flower is cup shaped.


This is a ground orchid. I have a purple flowering one. This is a beauty and it looks like I can divide this up and have 2-3 more.


Shrimp plant and red fringe flower plant from another nursery.



This is called Malaysian Orchid, although it really isn’t an orchid. This was bought at yet another nursery close by where I buy my potting soil. They also have a wonderful veggie market.




You can see some of the berries forming from the flowers. They will be several shades of purple, I’ll try to remember to get a photo when the stem is all berries.


Now for a couple of things I already have growing.

An orchid from my dear friends Nanci & John.


This is ‘Love’.


Next is ‘Mozart’. A sweet little rose I bought last spring or the year before.



This is a bloomin’ onion, but not of the Outback Steakhouse variety. I had an onion that had sprouted in my bin, so I decided to pot it up and see what would happen.



Bloom below is from a spinach tree. I got three cuttings of this last year, I think and they all rooted. Butterflies love this and the trees get at least 10 ft. tall and loaded with blooms. Cuttings root easily. So, I’ll be taking cuttings from my own plants now and rooting them up. I want to make this place a flowering jungle.


This is Tahitian gardenina. I wish you could smell this. Heavenly! Flowers are huge.


Thursday afternoon I got a wonderful treat in the mail from a sweet blogging friend, Jessica, who is a ‘foodie’. Her blog is filled with recipes and wonderful photos of the delicious recipes she makes. She sent me 3 dozen Soft and Chewy Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies. Recipe found on her blog here. Oh my gosh, these are fantastic. Thank you dear Jessica.

This morning I worked from 8-12 in my ‘secret garden’. Repotting the plants I’d bought and a few others I already had, into larger pots. There were butterflies and dragonflies flitting around, birdsong was filling the air, scents were floating around, the weather was beautiful and I was thankful. God’s creation is so amazing and wonderful.

Yesterday from around 11-3 I worked with the owner of a local dance theater on costumes for 20 young ones doing ‘swan lake’. We hot glued white hackle feathers to headpieces, still have more to do. We have breast pieces to glue feathers to also and then work to do on the costumes, shortening the tulle skirts as they are too long for this particular dance. It was my first time ‘gasp’ using a hot glue gun. It was awkward at first, but I finally got the hang of it. We enjoyed working together and will be doing so again one day next week. She also had an idea for me to make little pillows with the dancers photos on them embellished with my bead and ribbon work. She said the mothers would love to buy them. She gave me a sweet photo of a little ballerina that I will use to make up a sample. I’ll show and tell after I create one.

Anyway, that’s what has been going on here at Plum Cottage. I have much to be thankful for, even when I have sad moments.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Be thankful for all that you have. Love & pray for others, encourage them too, starting with your spouse and family.




Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

The variety of plants at your place always amazes me. Sounds like you had a lot of enjoyable time in the garden. Happy garden, happy gardener!!

Ruth Hiebert said...

Oh what beauty! You have so many flowers around.I would love to see them and enjoy the floral extravaganza at your home.Have a great weekend.

GretchenJoanna said...

A trip to a nursery and bringing home a new plant or two - what a great way to cheer up! Works for me. That sweet almond bush sounds like something I would like to plant - I will have to look around.

You reminded me that I was going to shop at a certain nursery tomorrow, because they are having a weekend sale, and aren't open during the week. But now I probably can't go, because I am coughing and sneezing etc. too much. I really don't need more plants! I have much planting and potting to do already :-)

Mildred said...

I see that we share many of the same blog friends and I want to say "hi." I live in north GA. When I am lonely/sad it always lifts my spirits to visit the garden center. These are lovely blooms. I don't know what the mystery plants are. We had thunderstorms/hail recently but I hope the weekend will be nice. I look forward to getting out in the yard. God bless your weekend.

Jessica Jarrell said...

I'm so glad you are enjoying the cookies, that makes my day! I gotta say, I wake up sad a lot too and one of my pick-me-up's is to head to our local nursery. Not Lowe's, cause Lowe's makes me sad, but the local nursery owned by one local family. It just seems freer there. Their flowers are better than Lowe's, plus they have a goat area. I always feel better after going there, and most of the time, leave with at least one flower :-) I'm jealous of all the varieties of plants that grow in Florida, you have some amazing blooms down there. I really am getting antsy for flower season here :-)

I hope you have a great weekend FlowerLady!

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

Good Morning!! Finally we have a sunny day and more in the forecast. I am antsy to get to the garden center to see what calls my name. Last year my garden was on hold as my FIL got sick, hospitalized for a month, then passed. Totally took the wind from our sails. We spent hours at the pond watching fish, frogs and birds but did VERY little garden work. This year I am raring to go. My foot is almost ready too...finally. It is so wonderful to be outside in the sun enjoying the gifts of Nature, isn't it!?!
xx, Carol

Stitchy Mc Floss said...

I love that shrimp plant! All your flowers and greenery are so pretty. You have been very busy. :) Blessings always.

L. D. said...

Plum Cottage is really busy. What a beautiful collection of flowers. The roses are so special. You are doing well when you let God show you his beauty throw his created plants.

Rebecca said...

I SO like the virtual jungle you're creating! Such beautiful new plants to cultivate and enjoy.

Today was our first to really be able to be in the yard. Gary mowed and we began work in the flower beds. It is a good time to divide hosta. So I posted that we had some available and had a "taker" later in the afternoon. SO happy to share!

Have a blessed Sunday, Lorraine.

Darcie said...

Your tea roses are beautiful...I'm sure they brought some joy your way! How fun to get little packages of love in the mail...they sound delicious. Glad you have your 'secret garden', and that you share picture of your garden with us.

Sandra @ Thistle Cove Farm said...

What a lovely surprise...a new garden shop. Your photos are beautiful and butterfly flowers are always welcome. The Mennonite youth came on Friday to weed my flower/herb gardens but the sky was spitting something nasty so they put my bedroom together...meaning the BED! Woohoo! It took yesterday to get it like I wanted it but last night I slept in MY bed...first time in 3 months.
Rainey, those cookies sound amazing, what a nice gift.

Connie said...

My, my, my what a beautiful post!
Thank you for sharing.
Connie :)

BeachGypsy said...

Thank you sweet Lorraine for always helping me identify my mystery flowers!!

Kit said...

Everything looks wonderful! I love that you are helping with the costumes, I am sure the love it. Have a great week! Kit

NanaDiana said...

That is an amazing nursery that you found, Lorraine. I love all the plants they have and how lush and beautiful everything looks. Is it possible that the orange flower is a slipper plant? That is kind of what it looks like to me but I'm not sure.

Your orchids and other flowers are all just gorgeous, too.

I did costuming for a local music theater for several years and loved it.It wa a lot of work but so rewarding and working with the other costume ladies was a lot of fun. Can't believe you never used a glue gun burnt fingers??? lol

Hope you have a wonderful upcoming week. xo Diana

Jeri Landers said...

I was watching a youtube vid yesterday called "Great Gardens of ENgland" and they featured a tremendous rose garden, you would love it. Visiting charming garden centers is one of life's delights for a gardener. If i didn't make my living at art, I think I would love to be a Nursery Woman.

klaraau01 said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful garden and your plants, love your special orchids

Beatrice Euphemie said...

I love those 'secret garden' nurseries tucked in odd places. Sadly, so many of ours around here have gone by the wayside due to the big stores moving in. You found some wonderful selections and I enjoyed seeing all the different and unusual flowers you have there. The rose is wonderful and glad you were able to get out and cheer yourself up. The dance theater volunteering is sure nice of you and what a great idea to make up the little pillows, too. Love the great advice at the end. Life passes so quickly and we never know what the next day will bring. Sending you hugs xo Karen

Debbie - Mountain Mama said...

Wow, you certainly got quite a few gorgeous specimens for your secret garden - you're going to be a busy lady with all that planting!
ps can you send some of those cookies my way? :)

Dewena said...

I always read your last lines carefully, Lorraine, as if they were a special message and wise message to me.

I love the new rose, what amazing blooms! So unusual. But even your blooming onion is pretty, and I just threw out a small red onion at the back of the bin that had green sprouting from it, will have to try that sometime. Your Secret Garden must be a very special place. I'm glad you got to spend some time working in it.

May this Easter week bring heart's ease when the moments are sad, dear Lorraine. I'll be thinking of you.


Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

A trip to a nursery would sure brighten my day and I love trolling through the ones near me. Many of them have gone from adding home decor to clothing which adds delight to the outing. You have different plants than us and it's nice to see the variety of orchids available.
Happy Easter.

KathyB. said...

The nursery looks like a tropical paradise and must smell heavenly. What a perfect way to lift your spirits , browsing for plants for your secret garden in such a lovely place.

Your ground orchid is my favorite, the peachy-pink is beautiful !

The variety of plants you can grow in your gardens is amazing. Here the snow only melted last week and the temps are still dropping below freezing at night. This makes visiting your via blogger even more appreciated.

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

Oh I loved seeing your visit to Green Gate nursery and all of your flower shots and then imagining the Swan Lake costumes! You are so talented : how lucky they were to have your help!

Deborah Montgomery said...

Such a beautiful variety of plants and flowers. I enjoyed looking at all of them, but my favorite are the pink tea roses. I never could have too many! And yes, those glue guns can be tricky, and hot!!
Blessings to you for a Happy Easter, and your advice at the end was so good. xo Deborah

Melanie said...

I always love to see the flowers where you live because there's so many different ones than here in northern IL. I wish I could send you some of our rain - we've had too much of it! March and April are normally our rainy season here. So sweet of Jessica to send you cookies. I looked at her blog, and those cookies look so delicious! Happy Easter, Rainey.

BeachGypsy said...


Lynn McIntosh said...

Your new rose is just beautiful - even when it's starting to fade! All of your blooms are special and I love looking at everything that you have in your garden! I'm loving the Blooming Onion too! I may have to paint that :) Wonderful architecture. Hope you're having a lovely Easter!

M.K. said...

What a lot of gorgeous flowers! I really love that first tea rose. It looks very old-fashioned. Glad you had fun choosing some new "friends" for your garden :) It's so fun to visit a favorite store. Are you being paid for your work on the dance costumes? That would be nice!

Betsy Adams said...

Hi There, Hope you are okay... I noticed that you hadn't posted since April 7 ---but since it is spring, I understand... The YARD calls my name and I'm not on the computer very much.

The Green Gate Nursery is so pretty... I'm sure you could stay there for hours and hours just looking for new things for YOUR garden.... Sounds like you got some great deals while there.. I know how happy that makes you.

I have a FL friend who grows Caladium. Her yard is filled with them and they are so pretty. Do you grow them also? I tried to grow them here one year but they don't like the winters we have....

Have a great day/week.

Judy at GoldCountryCottage said...

Hi Lorraine. All the plants that you just got and the ones already growing in your garden are really beautiful. I can just imagine how sweet your secret garden must smell. Even though I do like the seasons, to be in a garden all year round would be pure heaven. Can't wait to see what you come up with for the little pillows. I know it will be something special..Have a wonderful week..Judy

Cathy @ My 1929 Charmer said...

Beautiful flowers and photos...

Rue said...

Hi sweet Rainey :)

I love that nursery. It's beautiful and they have so many unusual plants. You picked some real beauties!

Isn't Jessica sweet for sending those cookies. I love that girl :)

I hope you're doing okay. I noticed you've been posting less.

love to you,

A Joyful Cottage said...

Nurseries are one of the best places to go when I'm down. Just walking the aisles and seeing all the beautiful colors blooming lifts my spirits. I can't identify your flowers, but the first one you showed looks like a lily. Wood Lily, maybe? A wild guess, but actually I don't know. LOL The other one, the cutting, is beyond me, but it sure looks healthy! The Malaysian Orchid is fabulous. Wow, love that! Hugs, Nancy

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

you have so many beautiful blooms there / amazing! And I love seeing what you are doing with your artistic talent as well :)

outlawgardener said...

It's always so exciting to bring new growing things home and you've got some beauties. The Malaysian Orchid looks like Medinilla myriantha but I've no idea what your mystery plant is. Happy gardening!