Howdy, maddie here (aka, "madgardener" <gbseg>)
Sitting here cooling off after walking the mile or so to the library
in the center of this old historic town in mid 90's and 60% humidity.
I was starting to squish as I got to the bank that has replaced eight
itea plants due to their planting them, but not returning to WATER
THEM, and the hot, dry weather did them in. of course. NOW they have
five lime yellow spirea planted in some of the holes. Lets hope they
survive......it pains me to see these plantings, with mulch around
them but no follow up for moisture. ackkk....
The city faeries are kind to me. I found an abandoned hens and
chicks pot with slightly tattered sempervivums in some of the holes
and nary a crack on the jar. It musta fell off and landed just on the
grassy place next to the sidewalk last night as I walked the
neighborhood because I wasn't tired enough to pass out. It was quite
a find, I'll tell you. I have different sempervivums (hens and
chickies) to tuck into the empty holes today when I return home. I
will take my time returning because the heat now is pushing towards
100o. There are HUGE magnolia's in full bloom though and the
fragrance of lemon is enough to make me tear up and have tears of
happiness and memories of where I grew up in Nashville and never
realized that those same Southern Magnolia's that were at LEAST 200
years old was some of the smells of my childhood and young adulthood.
I sometimes am able to bury my nose and face into the huge blossoms
because these people respect these trees and they grow with limbs down
to the ground and are four feet thick or more. and there are younger
trees as well and they're blooming too.
I miss so many of my beloved perennials (children to those who
understand my emotions) but I am holding strong because I am
emotionally happy with me Englishman and heart-mate. He's like a
middle aged child as he checks out the rhubarb and tomato's and "nose
twisters" every day when he comes home. I wish now I'd put more of me
back into digging out a true garden, instead of the pathetic attempt
strip along the back fence row. Live and learn, though. I have the
joys of working with real soil, but the added aggrivation of having to
do poop patrol as I walk UP the slightly steep back yard towards the
back strip to see if Bugs has munched the beans.....and yep, telling
me I desperately need a piece of dogwire to cover the beans as they
emerge and keep bugs out. sad to think there's a large piece back in
vinca ridge waiting for me to just drive down the driveway, walk down
the steep slope and snap back up and put in the car, those and the old
oak tobacco sticks that Mr. Harold made me one year when I still lived
in White Pine. I ordered and paid for 125 and they lasted me up to
last year and my numbers had gone down to 75 well aged but still
sturdy and straight oak tobacco sticks over six foot tall and four
inches thick. sigh......
I have a cobweb sempervivum that is blooming more deep rose
flowers, and I don't see too many chicks to remain after mom blooms.
I'm faced with the decision of pinching off the flowers before the
mother hen dies or let it run it's beautiful course. And the green
sedums are blooming yellow stars now. As well as the Angelina sedum
that I had in a windowbox that I snapped up and brought with me first
thing. Another pot of sedums I brought with me revealed where I'd
tucked in the Lollypop lilies, and they're almost done, but have
brightened up my day as I placed the pot on the concrete stoop beside
the downstairs entrance door to where we live and sleep (James and I,
Patrick sleeps upstairs where the air conditioning is, this house is
HUGE and used to be a duplex for a few years, just open and not closed
I will need very soon to find or get a larger container for my
Harry Lauder's Walking stick tree (twisted filbert) as it desperately
wants a larger pot than the three gallon I have her in. Location
isn't the problem as much as the toes want to stretch and grow more.
The woods poppy has survived the north and harsh indirect western
sunlight and I keep a keen eye on her for moisture stress during this
heat wave. I just wish I had some hard as nails zinnia plants to fill
into the concrete containers I did bring with me that were given to me
by Miz Mary. Maybe with a little time and patience...........
I eagerly watch the mailbox every day for letters, sympathetic
small boxes of growing things.....<g> now I wish more than anything
that I'd been able to have located my "Nashville stainless steel
walking ferns" before we moved because I never identified them and
they withstood direct sunlight. I miss them horribly. I DO have
healthy as nails, rosemary and the oregano is about to bloom as is the
spearmint and lemon verbena that is in the herb strip along the west
side of the house underneath all those downstairs windows.
Speaking of the western side, apparently I have yellow finches and
not only wrens but rose finches but they prefer the driveway side of
the house. So I have refilled the thistle sock and placed it next to
the tomato's that I planted along the western side of the back yard
fence because the grasses that were growing there on the other side
had started to go to seed and they were perching on the stems. Makes
me wonder if my 'Heavy Metal" grass is living over at
Karol's......ackkkkk, this was just common grass and three foot stems
Planting the Tithonia today regardless of the heat, and replanting
okra as well. I'm about to move the majority of the cacti and
succulents outside as well to benefit from all this strong heat and
sunlight. I expect to see sunburnt skin on the plants though as
they've been enjoying the indirect back porch that has eastern,
southern and western sunlight. I was going to leave everyone in the
porch where it feels like a dry greenhouse desert, but realized they'd
thrive more if moved to direct baking sunlight.
Can't remember if the clivia like direct sun or not and need to
find the book on them to make sure I don't scorch them. And finding
the book won't be easy as I haven't yet set up the nook and the garden
books. There are many things to accomplish and the garden no matter
how small it is here in the new temporary home seems to take priority
with me as it always did in vinca ridge. The sanseveria seem to have
finally adjusted to the harshness of EASTERN sunlight on the PORCH!!
Now they're happy and starting to show new leaves as they remember
I am shocked and pleased silly with the pink primroses as they have
bloomed now for over six weeks and show no signs of letting up. There
are some that have a blotched yellow on their leaves and it doesn't
appear to be a virus or fungal disease but possibly a newer variety.
If it were a disease or fungus or even problem, it would have spread
to the rest of the plants and it hasn't so far that I can see. I will
have to try and lift a little piece of it and try and locate an empty
pot and pot her up and see how it does. Now that I think about it, I
had plenty of time to have taken soft wood cuttings of the Coppertina
and Diablo ninebark, but it never entered my mind until the new growth
was hardening up last week. oh well, another lesson learned. the day
I don't learn, I've gone to the dirt sleep, eh?
The dawgs have adjusted well with quiet older inner city life with
exception to Sugar who focuses on those pesky rabbits and squirrels
and wants to chase and murder them (she catches them, too) but her
intense focus means she doesn't see the cars coming up the street
where I live.......so I've had to tear her a new butt at times with me
tongue when I see her crouch and start to tear off. The border collie
in her, added to the fact that she's still in excellent shape means
she's still needing some intense exercise and not living out where she
was totally free to wander makes it hard on her. She has taught
Smeagol how to escape the fence at the back of the house near the
downstairs entrance and they are usually waiting for me with smiles
and tongues hanging to the ground when I return from the library.
Soooo, locking them into the house and denying them access to the back
yard through the back porch door is their punishment. Smeagol comes
immediately, but Sugar is intent on having those fluffy tailed nutters
and bugs relatives.
I may let her sleep outside and try some night deterance and hope
she doesn't tear up the garden too much (she's been good so far with
no digging). I had to tie up the tomato's with the soft cord that I'd
balled up from a rug that the former occupant who lived in the house
on the ridge had started making but never finished. it was the silky
edging of blankets she'd crochetted into a rug, so I unraveled it and
have used it years now for tying up plants. It's tough and doesn't
deteriorate with sun and rain and is screaming pink-red. <g>
It's time to call it a day and head back in the sweltering heat. I
have enjoyed catching up the mail I have gotten from some of you, and
reading posts to former writings as well. I will see you over the
fence sooner than you might expect. Everyone have a great weekend,
great gardening experiences I look forwards to reading about and keep
in touch, I'll have sweet iced tea for those who'd like to visit me
<gbseg> we now have a working fridge!
thanks for the time to chat and share.
maddie up in the green bowl, surrounded by the Cherokee National
Forest and Appalachians in Greeneville, Tennessee gardening in zone 6b
- 7a with REAL dirt!!