Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas from Pinewood Cottage

A peek in the front door and pencil tree.

I hope everybody has a safe and happy Merry Christmas.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Air Layered Camellias and Daddy's Old Nativity Scene

     Today was the day I decided that I had to cut the air layerings from the camelia bushes. I air layered six. Four made it through the longest drought summer I have been through here in town. You can probably see from the photo that one of my spagnum moss packages dried out. The layering does have roots but it is all really dry, I won't be surprised if it doesn't make it through. The other three look moist, and have roots growing out of the moss already. They should do great. The photo below shows the great start they have.

Four new plants tucked into the nursery bed for the winter. If its a wet winter they should do fine. Below are two photos that show why I love to layer camelias. who wouldn't want to have more of these beautys around the yard, or to give as gifts.
 Professor Sargent - red
 unknown Camelia

     The two photos below are shots of my Daddy's nativity scene. He used to put this up every year in our front yard. The last time that I saw this set up and lit was probably 1970 something. I don't know why he quit putting it up. It was stored in the roof of the garage for decades. Several years ago my Mama had the garage cleaned out and the set was propped up behind garage. It is really rotten. Of course the one piece that was that most gone was baby Jesus. If you look closely he is just a small rotten blob of plywood, I had to make a little manager to hold him up. The paint has washed off, and the legs are falling off the animals but it pleases me to have it up. I do not know what I will do with it in January. I may trace it onto new plywood and try to copy it, or I might just throw it out. I don't know. It means alot to me. I doubt I could do it.

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving Day and I hope to be the first to wish you all a Merry Christmas Season. We look forward to decorating the house for Christmas each year. We begin tomorrow with the outside garland and lights. Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

...on little cat feet...

Fall comes on little cat feet...
and sneaks into the backyard
so slowly you don't realize it.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Property of the Month

There's Bermuda Grass invading the flower beds. The Pine Straw is faded and sparce. Nothing is blooming or lush except the Knock Out Roses and the Mandilla. But we came home the other day to find the Property of the Month sign stabbed into the front yard. The city has a beautification committee that secretly chooses one home from each voting district each month. I don't think we win because we are that wonderful - I think we win because the city wants to send our neighbor a message about the state they keep their yard's not working.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

Alright all you stick stickers...what do i do now?

Alright all you stick stickers... what do i do now. i have two pots of OLD crepe mrytle clipppings alive and well under the plastic dome after the worst drought summer we have had in long time. Do I take the lids off of them now that the weather is cooler but still dry? Do I just leave the covers on them until next Spring when the soil warms up again? I don't have a clue.

This is the whole reason I started searching for ways to start crepe mrytle. I found Tom's blog Seventh Street Cottage. I never knew this whole blog world was out there. I had been trying to start these crepe mrytles from the old trees at the historic house across the road but i have never had any luck until now - i don't want to loose these. somebody has got to help me keep these precious few alive - i have no luck. any ideas?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Late August

I haven't cut the backyard since about July 4th. The fig bush is kissing the ground near the parking area. The centipede in the side yard is fading slowly away. It is dry. Water has fallen out of the sky several times. The kittens and i didn't know what it was. We know that rain splashes and refreshes everything - haven't seen that in a long while. The sunny border is watered deeply once every 10 days or so, just because it's easy to reach and highly visible to everyone driving through town.

The Redbuckia Dasiy LOVES the heat.
 The Mandevilla Vines are finally blooming. It has been a weird year for them.
Do they peter out after a year or two?
 The Guara was chopped to 6 inches in July. It's back better than ever.
 The geranium that is in partial shade is doing great - the one in full sun is weak and thin. I won't show it.
 In the nursery bed the crape mrytle clippings that are covered are doing okay. i hope a few make it - This is the whole reason i started following everyone's blogs in the first place. I really want these to live.
 These four rabbit foot ferns were one really over grown plant last year. They will be sulking in the basement this winter. They love the heat in the shade.
 The rhizomes look like a little baby squirrel crawled up in the pot and died, i think that every time i see them.
Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Crape Mrytles in the Nursery Bed

 This is the Nursey Bed. I chose this spot because it is in light shade all day long. I don't think this area get full sun at any point unless it is right about sunset - and even then only for about 10 minutes.
 At the bottom in the front are last year's camelia air layerings. In the back left are several red maple starts that I also air layered. To the back right and under the plastic bubbles are some crape mrytle cuttings that are actually sprouting! I can't believe it. I tried soft wood cuttings which all rotted immediately. I tried hard wood cuttings that sprouted inside but slowly died. Janie over Obsessed Compulive Gardener suggested waiting until the soil was at 70 degrees or better. Well - she knew what she was talking about, because I took these cuttings after a good rain about 3 weeks ago, and some are really growing.
 This is the side yard between our house and the neighbor. It seems exposed and empty. I have been air layering camelias for several years building up a supply so that I can get them spaced out and in the ground.
 Here is a longer shot down the hill. A low chin link fence runs down the middle, but it just feels exposed and a little too close for comfort. Our neighbors are great but he is not in the best health. I am afraid they will sell quickly and we might not enjoy a dog barking or having neighbors staring at us all afternoon long. I need to get planting and mulching.
 We don't do much outside these days. School started this week so I have been working on my classroom, and it is so hot, humid, and dry that nothing is growing anyway the backyard has not been cut for 4 weeks - looks okay though. Jack goes out - does his business - and is ready to head back inside - me too!
This foxtail fern LOVES the heat - I have the pot inside another pot so it stays moist. Did I say ... LOVES IT!
I did find one thing blooming in the yard. This is a minature rose that my wife got as a Mother's Day present 10 or 12 years ago. It happily lives in the border beside the parking area, in dappled sunny shade. It is about 6 inches tall. I have such bad luck with roses I try not to mess with it too much.

I hope you guys have a great weekend.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Making Lasagna Beds for the Fall

Since August has come it seems a little cooler ahead here, so i have been working on layering some beds for future planting plans. I have Baptisia Alba coming for the White Garden in the Circle yard. More on that when they come in from Bluestone Perennials.
I am trying Yellow Knockout Roses along the driveway. That area is in dappled shade and will not get much moisture because the tree roots are everywhere along the low wall beside the driveway. The fountain near the drivewway failed so we replace the pump and the soft splashing makes that area sound moist and cool - whether it is or not.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Sunny Border first week of August

July was hot and dry, and not much was blooming or growing around here. The Shasta Daisies cooked and something ate the flower buds off of all the rubekia daisies so they didn't bloom for a long time. The mandevilla have been very slow, and we are just now getting buds on only one plant, i have been very disappointed.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sunny Border - the first week of June

 The Sunny Border has really filled in nicely. The Shasta Daisies are really popping - the white makes the bed look great from the street. The knock-out roses are reblooming. The no-name yellow daylilies are blooming.

 The Sea Holly is still going strong - i love the blue color which does not show up good in my photos.
The Enchinecia Green Envy is almost four feet tall. I guess two shovels full of Black Kow didn't hurt. Last year this plant did nothing. I still don't think i got what was advertised in the catalog. But it is great. I like it. Here's a closer look.
The mandilla vines are growing and have made it to the tops of the string - within the week they will start to pull themselves up onto the obelisks, then start blooming - i'm ready for it.
At the end of the border in the white garden the yarrow in beginning to bloom, this was a pass-along from the mountains by way of the Methodist minister's wife.
 Turning around and looking back toward the street this is what i see from the yard. Not too shabby!

School is out! and i am ready to spent the month of June in the garden. I have spent several years adding things to this front bed - but - i have neglected the goldfish pond and it's yard, as well as the whole shady back fence line. I will have to air my dirty laundry another day.

Have a great weekend.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Happy Birthday Frances

 Tuesday May 17th is my Mama's birthday. She was born in 1927, and is 84 years old. We had a big party when she turned 80, so this so just a small get-together.

Mama's baby sister Joanne came with her son James.

My dad's brother Thomas came with his girl friend, Mary Ann.


We all met at a small restaurant downtown, The Talk-of-the-Town.
 The art teacher at my school makes cakes. She fixed this basket of flowers for me, as a surprise for my mom.
 Chicken Casserole, green beans, broccoli salad, cucumber salad.
It looks like she is enjoying herself.
She looks pretty good for 84 don't you think?
Happy Birthday Mama!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sunny Sunday

 The Sunny Front Border mid-May. I forgot I had moved that one odd Day Lily to make room for the sea-holly. I like it right there in front. It shows up better. The Stella-de-Oro day lilies are in full bloom. The knock-out roses are in between bloomings.
 A nice arrangement.
 The is the unnamed day lily, more to come.
 Enchinaceia Green Envy ready to bloom. Last year it looked like any other old plant so they may have shipped the wrong thing.
 Stella-de-Oro - it just gets better with age.
 The mandevilla are almost to the tops of the string. They are doing great after being over-wintered in the basement.
 This fern just came up several years ago. It seems to like the full sun - so i say 'you go girl.'
 The yarrow is beautiful in person but it look SO bad in pictures. The ivy globe that the little boy carried last fall seems to have come undone.
The guara is off and running. It really does like the hot sun.
We got a lot that. Have a great week.