"I'm not really a career person.I'm a gardener,basically.".....George Harrison

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Who Knows What The Future Holds ???

I do!!!!!!!

For today's Share A Garden Sunday post,I thought I would share the backside of TheGreatWall,and our future plans for the gardens that surround "TheWall."

In these photos,wherever you see landscape timbers,they will be replaced with another GreatWall. Albeit,mini-me walls.........I hate

landscape timers.They rot,attract ants,I could go on and on,but I won't.

This garden goes around to the good side of the yard(more on the bad side,later) I love curved pathways!On one of the gardening programs on HGTV(I think),the host said,"When walking through a garden,one should always wonder what lies around the corner."
I love that thought!

This is part of our expanded shade garden.Notice the landscape timber in the background.

It's gonna be


This is one set of steps leading up to the pool area.In the lower left-hand corner,a landscape timber.

Outta here!

(And I need a birdbath for this garden.)

This is "The Path To Nowhere." I had extra pavers and no where to put them,so this is where they went.Actually,it has worked out fine,as they allow me access to fuss over the orchids and bromeliads,without stepping on plants.

Now,for the future...................

As I have been posting about all along:One side of our yard will be dug up by Hillborough county,this fall.So,I thought,

"Why not take the fellow garden bloggers on a tour?"

Shall we begin?
This is the future home of my potting shed.

Because I am tired of this.............

and this............

I need,and want,a proper area for repotting plants,growing cuttings,etc.As an added bonus,it would be a place to protect tender plants,if we should have another winter like the past two.

This is a view of the future Tropical Garden.The dining area of TheGreatWall overlooks this area,so it will be a wonderful place to sit and have dinner.I hope to achieve that look by using Florida native plants(and I shall be enlisting the help of Meems-whether she knows it or not- to achieve that look).

I really don't want to spend another cold winter(at least to us Floridians,it was cold!)covering and uncovering tender tropicals.

This is the future home of our new veggie garden.To the right,will be the potting shed,and the compost pile shall be moved to behind the shed.Jon will be building raised beds.We've found veggies grow much better in raised beds.

All of the cypress trees will be taken down(Can you say,"MULCH?"),the fence replaced with a brand new one,new topsoil and sod brought in,and at no cost to us(except for the taxes we already pay...).

How can you beat that deal?

Posted for Share A Garden Sunday,hosted by Artie,over at Color Outside The Lines.Thank you for hosting,Artie,and I am sooo glad we're back at it,again.

As an extra bonus feature,I thouht I'd include a photo I snapped,last nite,of a visitor to TheGreatWall.
Meet Mr.Bufo,an invasive species of toad.They have managed to decimate most of the native population of toads and frogs.They only eat protein,are poisonous to small animals,do not eat mosquitoes,and can be quite aggressive.A shovel to the head usually takes care of them........or you can always take a pitch fork to 'em,but they move fast,so you'd better aim good!

For size comparison,that's a plastic soup bowl-our cat's food dish.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Circle of Life........

With apologies to Elton John, the circle of life continues at The GreatWall..........

We have been watching the Swallowtail caterpillars for days.Out of all the original eggs,and baby caterpillars,only five seemed to have made it to a viable stage.

Today,when it was time for caterpillar check,two were still munching on what was left of the two parsley plants.
Oh no! Where had the other three gone?

We quickly found them......

#1 was found in the pot that contains the Chocolate Mint plant...........
#2 was found on a Gerbera Daisy........
and #3 was found on a Pineapple plant........
This is my favorite picture,of all.It shows him/her starting the process........
But what the heck is this?
We found this critter on the Chocolate Mint.Very close to the other live caterpillar.Could this be a dead caterpillar from the previous generation?He/she was totally non-reactive when we attempted to touch him/her.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sunday Morning On The Great Wall.....

I was up very early this morning,strolling around TheGreatWall.Camera in hand,of course.

I could have taken pictures of the mess of a side yard,but,instead I thought I would focus on the high-lights of the garden.The plants that have done the best,in this wacky weather we have had this past year.Numerous freezes,followed by heat and drought,followed by the summer rains.

This is the second time this year,the Angel's Trumpet has bloomed.And this time,it is blooming even better.This is the Angel's Trumpet that was frozen to the ground,this past January.It has been a delight this year! I have removed the lower leaves,and I'm trying to give it more of a tree form.This seems to accentuate the flowers.

Thank the Lord for Caladiums! In the heat and humidity of the summer Florida garden,they truly shine.When everything else has either died from the heat,or rotted from the humidity and rain,Caladiums just save the day.The freezes seemed to have helped them,too.
The Bananas are thriving,too.I don't recall what type they are.I got the original plant from my Dad over 30 years ago.They aren't suited for eating,like a "Chiquita-type banana." They have a some-what bland taste.But they are delicious fried with some butter and brown sugar!They also make delicious Banana Bread!

One of our three Staghorn Ferns.This is the mother plant to the other two we have,one of which you can just make out in the upper right of the photo.It has gotten so large that it has to be hung with a heavy chain,and it took both Jon and Erich,the Younger,to hang it in one of our oak trees.Even then,they could only get it 3 feet up off the ground.So,there it shall stay,I guess,for all of Eternity.They have both refused to move it ever again..............wimps!

A visitor to the garden this Sunday morning........Uh-oh,best head in..........................Big storm a - brewin'

After the storm passed,back out I went(Camera in hand,again.You never know what you'll find in a garden.).

The Mandivillea........

It,too,seems to love summer time,in Florida.

There's trouble in paradise,though.
The storm managed to take down a branch from one our Bay Laurel trees. Bay leaves,anyone?
While checking on the bromelliads,I found this guy,just hanging out on a Sunday morning.
Perfect spot for a toad,don't you think?

Just another summery Sunday morning,on TheGreatWall.................

Posted for Share A Garden Sunday,hosted by Artie,over at Color Outside The Lines.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Dang!,More Babies,Garden Update,and other assorted stuff......

For over a week we have patiently watched our chrysalis.Yesterday,it was whole.
Today,we came home to this..............
Kids! You turn your back for a minute,and they have grown up right before your eyes!

We have more babies to watch........

Tomorrow.I shall be going to the pet store to find a cage to put this parsley plant in. And,also,more parsley plants.Some for food;some for us.I,also,want to get a cage to put the parsley plants in,that we want to use for us.
When we were at the Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation nursery,we noticed that is what they did.Some plants were left out for the butterflies,some were in cages with the caterpillars on the plants,and some were in cages to be kept away from the butterflies.

Onward to the veggie garden..........
The banana peppers are all that's left......
And they're not growing too well,these days,either.The trials and tribulations of Florida gardening..........
Another contraband plumeria has set buds.
Puh-lease,puh-lease,puh-lease let this be the double white!!!!
A Gerbera has decided it wants to join in with the bloomers,too.
And some of the Cleome seeds that I gathered have sprouted and are doing quite well.
from Hillsborough County,we have a tentative,definite date for the drainage project!
The last two weeks of September-the first two weeks of October.
All of this is based upon the EPC,the EPA,and whomever else is involved,granting the final permits.The above government entities placed restrictions on the project(based on the fact we live on a navigable waterway),
sooooo,if they(the aforementioned government entities) accept Hillsborough County's respnse,that's the proposed date.Ahhhh,the pleasures of dealing with local,state and Federal Government........
they have to coordinate with Tampa Electric and Verizon FiOS,
All Jon heard was we're getting a new driveway out of this.
I heard sod,topsoil,cypress mulch.
Guess which one of us is the gardener?
Meems,get your HoeandShovel ready.If I have to drag you kicking and screaming over here.......
I have a plan.......And it should be a little bit cooler,by then.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Have A Seat,Why Don't You?

Now that that the typical Florida summer is in full swing,the garden has slowed down.

The vegetable garden is just about over.All that's left are some eggplants,and a few hot pepper plants.Everything else is now residing in the compost pile.

It is entirelt too hot and humid to garden all day.And the mosquitoes are out in full force!

So,the only decent time to tend to the garden is first thing in the morning,or in the evenings. And ,of course,you need a healthy dose of Off! before setting foot in the shade garden,or gardening down by the lake.

(Where has Mosquito Control been this year,by the way?Ahhhh-government cutbacks.....)

So,let's turn our attention to just sitting,shall we.

Two years ago,we had to have our front entry-way replaced.When they cut out the fourteen foot 4" x 16" cypress beam,they asked if we wanted it.

Hell yeah!!!
Actually,I think they wanted to keep it for themselves,as they were very careful taking it out.

But Jon took the chain saw and cut in in thirds.Sanded it down.And made garden benches with it.

This one is "The Time-Out Bench".It sits next to the pool,and when the little ones are here,and they misbehave around the pool,this is where they have to take time-out. (It has gotten alot of use,trust me.)
Jon just used two old concrete blocks to set it on.The plants have grown up around them,to cover what they are.

I love a bargain! The cheaper the better.Even better if it's free(as in The Time-Out Bench),but I cannot pass up a great deal.

Last weekend when I was in Target(or,if you prefer, Tar-zhay),the manager of the garden section happened to let slip that all the Smith and Hawken was going to go on clearance!

What was that he just said ?!

I am so there!

Then,this past week it came out that Smith and Hawken was liquidating.

Yesterday,first thing,I was at Target. These two chairs were marked down to $24.96 each! From $129.00 each!!!And they came with the cushions!I tell you,that was not to be passed up.They only had two left.

"Load 'em in the Tacoma,boys! And I'll take that table that's marked down to $19.00,too."

This bench was marked down to $29.00,from $69.00.

"Load that in the Tacoma,too,boys."

I made this sign for Jon.He has to have his own little space,too,after all.

Our oldest got us started on collecting the bumper stickers,so Jon's been putting them on his sign,along with old,rusty fishing tackle. He may have some design sense,after all...... Obviously,we need to visit more places...................

So,now that you've seen our newest garden bargains,
let's just sit,
have an adult beverage,or two.......

and,maybe,take a dip in the pool,to cool off.....................

Oh yeah,I got the tube at Pinch-A-Penny for $1.99.It was on a sale table,marked down from $13.99.
I love a bargain!!!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

This and That.........

To start off with,none of this is my fault!

Blame it all on Meems at Hoe and Shovel.If she hadn't gone on and on about how great her favorite nursery was,I never would've gone there,today.
And I wouldn' t have spent $$$$.

But....after renewing my driver's license,and seeing how crappy the picture was(as usual),I figured I needed a treat.

"Hey,why not go to that nursery Meems is always raving about?" I said to myself.
Self said,
So off the Tacoma took(I love,love that truck!-It sooo knows me.)
Yep-I could've spent a fortune there,but I did exercise restraint.

I figured I',m gonna need the

when it comes time to re-do the mess Hillsborough County creates.

I soooo have plans.................
(but I digress.)

Yes,I bought some things.Who wouldn't?
But,only a few.

I only bought a few.
I did only buy
a few.
So,here we go................

For the planters by the pool..................

Purple Elephant Ears.

I'm usually not a fan of Elephant Ears(they can be so invasive),but I really was drawn to these,and I figure if I keep them in a container,they should stay reasonable.

For the shade garden...............
Farugium Japonicum........
it likes moist,shade.And we have the most perfect spot for it,in the shade garden,under the oaks.
And it it has the most delicious yellow flowers,in the fall!

I think this guy got lost,on his way to the beach....................

The orchids have decided to act like they're on steroids.

Who ya gonna call?


His advice was to cut the new growth off and try to root it.

How do you think he put his advice?

"Please,don't overwater them.Could you please just try to have patience?For once?"

Hmmmm....I wonder what he mean's by that?

So.patience,it is...........................

And I think we have a Chrysallis!!!!!

Where the others went,we have no idea.
But this guy was on another parsley plant.He disappeared,yesterday.
And I found this on a Gerbera Daisy,today.

Ain't Florida gardening fun?

Monday, July 6, 2009

Justifiable Homicide ? CSI:TheGreatWallofLutz

You be the judge.......................

The crime scene....................... The victim's body with the yellow crime scene tape.blood and guts spatters outlined in red.

The alleged perpetrator's defense:

"This sucker was eating my Spathyphillum,dammit! His friends had already done a number on my Ostica Blue Eye,and they were moving in on my Bamboo Palm.I couldn't take anymore!

And the voices kept telling me to do it,before it became too late!

What else could I do? I had to save my family,didn't I?

Yep,I smashed him with my foot!I'm not like other people(meems)who cuts their heads off.At least,I smacked him good!That sucker deserved to die.

Don't you see?They're going to take over everything if somebody doesn't stop them!I have done the world a favor!

Go ahead---take me away.I am willing to sacrifice myself for the world of gardening.

Oh yeah,I want a lawyer.

And a jury of my peers( just make sure they're all gardeners)."


Related Posts with Thumbnails