Sunday, July 17, 2011

My Guideposts - Week 69

Even after all this time,
the sun never says to the earth,"You owe me."
Look what happens with a love like that.
It lights the whole sky.
~Hafiz

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

(Not So) Sweet Violets

Violets are one of my very favorite flowers. They bloom cheerfully wherever I plant them. They withstand snow, late freezes and dry winds. They have the prettiest leaves. And they might have the best smell of any single flower.

I love the blue ones that bloom by the shady chimney corner in earliest springtime. The rest of the garden might be dead leaves and frost-heaved soil, but that one lovely corner reminds me that better things are in store for a gardener with patience.

My shy little Labrador violet is a work in progress in my Forest Garden. She survives and blooms, but remains modest and quiet despite encouraging doses of extra water and fertilizer. I enjoy the challenge of changing her microclimate to something more to her liking. Gardeners are silly like that.

My red-violet violets (do you name color based on the big box of 64 crayons, complete with built-in sharpener, you had as a child?) are my very most favorite. They were a Mother's Day present a gazillion years ago and remind me that my children are the most amazing miracle of all. Most years the red violets and the sweet woodruff bloom simultaneously and the mingling of leaves and flowers were a bit of garden serendipity.

Then there are my white violets. They make me utter that age-old gardeners' question:
 
WHAT WAS I THINKING?!

Enamored by the unique white blossoms, I dug a few from the Queen Mother's old garden many years ago. They were one of the few plants that grew under the dry shade of the pin oak. They even managed to spread themselves with runners and seeds despite thick oak roots and hard soil. They grew much better under the white birch where the soil was rich, the water was plentiful and the shade was moderate.

Much. Better. (Alas.)

Yep, this yearly post chronicaling my battle again the dreaded white not-so-sweet violet is beginning to become a Meadowsweet tradition.
 
But guess what? I can see dirt now instead of a dense riot of violet plants! My weapon of choice (my big pick) is in permanent residence 'neath the birch so that I can loosen dirt and rip violet stems as I get a minute or two. Those minutes have added up nicely, despite summer temperatures. I have bare patches and I'm getting most of the roots out. I can see flowers that I actually want.
 
Like this pink mallow that mysteriously reappeared after five years.

I'm enjoying my time here in the garden at Encantado, but that doesn't stop me from sending long-distance evil thoughts to the remaining unsweet violets while I contemplate more digging and rooting out.  Physical violence, negative energy and the judicious application of noxious chemicals--them's my battle plans.

Extinction is not always a bad thing.

The determined/optimistic,

Visiing the Tuesday Garden Party over at An Oregon Cottage

Sunday, July 10, 2011

My Guideposts - Week68

This country will not be a good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a good place for all of us to live in
~Theodore Roosevelt

Funny that I never thought of TR as a philosopher before, but hey, you take wisdom where you find it!  Rolling up my shirtsleeves,

Friday, July 08, 2011

That Lightbulb Moment

I don't know about you, but when I travel I like to stay in contact at least a little bit. Taking along my cellphone and checking email is part of visiting far-flung family, because I want to make sure things are okay at home with the dogs and the hens. (I try not to think about what my garden is suffering in the summer heat--that's just part of the tradeoff for a vacation.)

A side benefit is being able to keep up with friends and occasionally blog. It seems like there is just enough downtime when we visit, to be able to go online.

But keeping up with my blogging friends has always been a bit more challenging.  I miss you when I'm away. You are just part of my daily routine like brushing my teeth or making a smoothie for breakfast. So I thought I was brilliant on my Oregon trip to email myself a list of blog https so I wouldn't have to remember them.

Today I was doing a bit of surfing while my son was working and after I checked my emails, I drifted over to A Hocking Hill's Garden to see what Lona was up to with her plants. I usually depend on Google Reader to keep me informed of new posts when I'm home, so it's a treat to actually see the website for a change while I'm on the road. As I was scrolling down, I noticed her bloglist that updates new posts as others publish them. Lightbulb!

Adding new sites to my bloglist just went to the top of my priority list, people.  That way I can just check in on my own blog, click your links and presto! So easy.

So I'm just mentioning this in case you are planning a trip and are as addicted to your blogging friends as I am. 

And Lona, I owe you a big thanks for making my life a bit nicer!

Bloggily yours,

p.s. It turns out that Blogger will let you easily import all your Google Reader subscriptions or the blogs you follow right onto your bloglist. Brilliant!

p.p.s. I have way too many blogs on my Reader so I deciced to pick and choose. If your blog isn't on my bloglist, I'll catch up with you when I get back!

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

A July Garden Party

The Liberty Crew would like to invite you to join them in the pleasant July shade.
 
So would Flick (I think he wants to show off his green thumb--I haven't the heart to tell him that anybody can grow petunias).
 
We'll decorate with some Peace roses.  Can one can ever have enough Peace?  I think not.
 
Fragrance provided by the Scentimental roses as well as a bit of patriotic red-and-white stripes.
Midas Touch will add a pop of color to our garden picnic.
 
The waterlilies contribute cool elegance. As well as provide a hiding place for our shyest guests.  Who would guess that my three goldfish (Target, Tips, and Red) are lurking right beneath those leaves?
I invited both of the Mourning Dove twins, but it looks like only one could come. 

Maybe the other twin realized that Zelda and Kharma were also coming?
The funny thing is that I made sure the garden looked nice, but forgot all about providing food.  Yikes!

A little dieting never hurt anyone.  I'll pour some cold water and add a sprip of fresh mint and we'll have so much fun chatting and looking at the flowers we won't miss nibbling.  Will we?



and Show and Tell at My Romantic Home

Monday, July 04, 2011

Red, White and Blue--Hooray!

I can't help humming patriotic tunes while I garden and feed the Bombshells.

I'm a Yankee Doodle Dandy...
A real live nephew of my Uncle Sam,
born on the Fourth of July. 
Sweet land of liberty... 
Of thee I sing.
Purple mountains majesty...
Amber waves of grain.

It's a grand old flag...
The emblem of, the land I love, home of the free and the brave...
Every heart beats true for the red, white and blue...
Forever in peace may it wave.

It's more than a holiday for us Americans.

Wishing the whole world life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness-- 


Sunday, July 03, 2011

My Guideposts - Week67

I am open to the guidance of synchronicity, and  do not let expectations hinder my path.
  ~Dalai Lama

Why is it that cherished relatives provide the ultimate need to become a little zen before they drive me crazy?  I think my expectations are at fault, so I plan to let my plans float and drift at the whim of the Truckee River beforehand so that I can enjoy three lovely people with all my heart.  

Wish me luck,