Category Archives: Gardening

More Frosty Fronds

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I am super proud of this picture.


Nothing but frozen fallen leaves on an old garden ornament. But I love it.


A different angle.


Sundial. Clearly not able!


Life – might be uncomfortable but we persevere. 


Berry berry?


Flowers still trying! Dammit, is my finger in the picture top right? Oops.


Frosty ivy. 

November in Bloom

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I still have roses. 


The leaves on the blueberry bushes are just stunning.


Best of all, I have new gazania. Really tall gazania! These grew from seed this year, and I popped them into a pot with gladiolus. That might give you some idea of how tall they are! All of my others are less than a foot tall – these are heading toward three!


Unfortunately there hasn’t been enough sunshine for the blooms to open fully. Shame as they are just gorgeous.


Yesterday there was a bit more sun and this one tried to soak it in. Blurry as it was also windy as heck yesterday! 

Halloween Treat! Hedgie in the Compost

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It’s an old story now, but last week when I took my kitchen scraps out to the compost bin, I  got a surprise.


The bin.
When I opened it up, it did not look anything like the way it had looked two days before. It looked like the world’s biggest worm had been rummaging around in there.


Such a big hole where no hole was before. What could it be? 


Hard to see, but something had dug a tunnel into the bin underneath the massive oregano bush. 

I immediately thought of rats. I’m not a fan of rats in the wild. Not scared, but I’d rather they didn’t live on my property.


But there was a wee round nest, too. What animal is native to Ireland and is round when it curls up? A hedgehog! So I looked closer….


Hedgehog poop! Definitely not rat poop. 

Unfortunately it seemed hedgie didn’t like my intrusion into the warm safe place full of food, as there hasn’t been any sign that it has been back.

Bummer, I even left grapes as an offering!

Dahlias, Darlings.

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We bought a load of dahlias early in the year. Of course now is their prime time, despite my lack of care and feeding this year. Some haven’t bloomed at all, but have foliage. Some just keep it up and have since August!


The most recent to bloom – one pic is mine, one is hubby’s. Same flower! 


This big one is going right now, too. It was turned to the side, away from the sun, so I had to hold it for himself to take a decent picture. 


Earlier blooms from the same plant – it is quite prolific!



Plain white – don’t remember buying this one but it is here nonetheless.

  

I could swear we got a purple and white one, but instead this came up. Oh well, it’s still pretty, and welcome.

Now. Will I remember to dig them out when it gets cold? Likely not!

Stapelia gigantea, or Carrion Flower

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I’ve had this plant a long time. I first got it in 1998 or so. I couldn’t bring it with me to Ireland, but I did take a cutting and brought it in sans soil. Lucky for me, it survived a month in the container in a jar of water and damp paper towel. Probably still illegal, but at least I didn’t bring any bugs or weird microbes in to the country. It’s a house plant, here, but is native to South Africa – as it seems a lot of my favourite plants are!

Oddly enough, after 11 years, this thing finally decided to bloom. Not that long ago, I gave it a good soaking, and a wash (the leaves are furry and collect a lot of cat hair), and I guess that finally sparked it into flowering. I won’t read anything into a corpse flower blooming the week my Spotty cat died.

First I noticed was that there was a huge balloon sticking out the side.


Stormtrooper mini-fig for size. We all know how big they are, right?

Then it opened.


Weird as hell, right? And it does, indeed, stink of death. Not that bad, really, unless you stick your face right in it. The scent and hairs are to mimic a dead animal, as this is a fly-pollinated plant. The texture of the bloom is very much like leather, too. This one started to shrivel today, so I cut it off. But there are several more coming, so I am taking better care of it than I usually do. It got another good soaking today.

If you want to learn more about this unique plant. 

Roses for Mama 2016

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My mother died 19 years ago today. It’s never a good day for me, and somehow the day before is worse. I have her beloved peace roses growing in my garden, and I think of her every time I see them. She wasn’t a gardener at all, but passed the love of this particular rose on to me.

I just wish I could share them with her.


If you love any of these photos, please save them, but share with someone you love. I would feel as though you are spreading the love of the peace rose on behalf of my mama.

Oh No, or O.K.?

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Found new residents in my grey willow this evening. 


There are three groups of this size that I can see.


They are eating the leaves down to the centre vein! Not that I care about the willow, in fact I’m trying to kill it by girdling it (I want to keep the framework for other climbers). I don’t see them in any of my other plants, either.

Any ideas? Are they bad, good, or chaotic neutral?

Peace Out

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I have one very very healthy and happy rose bush – my all-time favourite, the Peace rose. It is finally coming into bloom, and I have to say I’ve been able to get the most gorgeous photos of the first bud.


Day one…


Day two…


Today.

I’m still sick, but it’s sunny today and it costs little of my energy to sit outside and smell the flowers. I’m so grateful. The peace rose was my mother’s favourite rose, and I have so many good memories of her when I am enjoying this rose (it smells as good as it looks). 

Oh, for Socks: How I did it. I did some photo editing on the first two shots to bring up the ‘black point’ and make the dark green leaves look black. I don’t know if any of the further THIRTEEN buds on this tiny bush will also have the full-leaf background to make this type of shot possible again.