Flower battle!






Flower shop vs. My Garden. Who wins? Tonight, YOU DECIDE.

IMG_3032(P.S., these smell better. Like 5000 times better.)



My day so far:

Woke early because a spider was crawling up the side of my torso. Flicked him off and rolled over, but the birds were singing, so I didn’t get back to sleep. In case this anecdote hasn’t informed you already, spiders don’t freak me out… which explains my affinity for the Wizard Howl.

Baked these grain-free vanilla cup-cakes.

Frosted them with this home-made nutella.

But first I blanched a bunch of hazelnuts… which is ridiculous. Spend a little more and buy them blanched. I tell you what.

Ate two cupcakes. I justify it that by the time everything was done it was nearly noon.

Then I mowed the lawn and puttered a bit in my garden.


Spent some time petting and crooning love songs into the ear of my beloved Oliver. (He’s a cat, btw.)


Picked great mounds of plantain leaves (yes, the yard weed), washed, chopped and covered it  in olive oil in a jar. After several weeks, it’s supposed to be useable for an amazing skin salve for bug bites and i know not what. We shall see.


And the day’s not over yet. 😉 I have great plans for more gardening and working on a painting later this evening. My aunt has commissioned two paintings from me, the cost of which almost exactly covers the amount I still owe her on my car loan. Perfect! I love that even though I am not waking up to an alarm and groaning my way out of bed to head to work every morning, I am still able to earn my keep while I’m home. I’m not growing rich by any means, but my time is my own and I love it.

Where has she been?

She (myself) has had one whirlwind after another over the summer and fall.

First, my brother got married. If you’ve ever had a wedding in your family (and I assume you have) you know what that entails.


I had the privilege of being the florist for his wedding….

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Hi ho, hi ho…

I have a tendency to either work or play, and have a hard time mixing the two into one day. The only other option in my life is to veg. On days when I work 8 hours, I then come home and veg. Rarely can I get the right balance of energy to also play. Blogging is one way that I play, so during the 6 months of the year that I work full-time, these funny little things called ‘blog posts’ are few and far between. But hey, today I have pictures of such beauty, I MUST share them! Facebook is insufficient cyber-space, WordPress must be given proof that I work in a place of beauty! Well, sometimes. Now that the poinsettias have come it, it’s a sure thing.

Click through for more pictures. 🙂


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October Colors in the Garden

Burgundy mums are my favorite. Pink is nice, I’m sure yellow is cheery and all that, and orange is perfectly suitable for blending in with pumpkins and whatnot, but deep wine red is just so satisfying. And the smell! Not specific to any color, obviously, but I’ve been known to stand for a long while with a branch of mums in my hand, rubbing the leaves and inhaling deeply. I do this in the garden, in the flower shop, and once at a boutonniere work-shop, where my co-worker thought I was sniffing glue.  Anyway, let’s put that moment behind us… Last year, while working at the greenhouse, potting up mum cuttings for the fall season, I brought home a few extras, grew them on and planted them in my garden for a nice little autumn display. We had such a mild winter, one of them came back this year! That very rarely happens for me. I don’t mind a bit.

Second week of October, and still no frost. The Impatiens are grateful.

A new hosta I put in this summer. I wish I knew it’s name, but it had no tag when I got it. I find I am growing addicted to hostas, something I never would have believed could happen. They are just LEAVES after all, just a bunch of GREEN with pathetic flowers that don’t do much for anyone. Well… that mature clump does look really eye-catching… and those giant blue ones… and the tall neon-green… and those itty-bitty variegated ones with bright yellow stripes! Yeah. I’ve been bitten.

Clickety-clickety for a loooot of pictures, and more plant gushings than you ever wanted to read.

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Of Autumn Blooms

The nights are cool (and mosquito-free! Yay!) and the colors of my outdoor world are definitely changing. The leaves aren’t turning yet, but Autumn Joy sedum is no longer beautiful pale heads of broccoli, but a soft rose-pink. Aster, wild and cultivated, are everywhere, billowy and fragrant. And my Sweet Autumn Clematis, which has completely consumed the 12′ windmill in my garden is starting to pop the masses of tiny white stars open. It took a few years to get established, but it is now one of my favorite fall plants and I can’t imagine a flower garden without one!

This photo is not mine, I couldn’t find one on my computer and it’s too dark to take one now, so… yeah, I stole this picture. This one is growing in the same form as mine, it’s AMAZING. Just when the greens of summer become tired and everything starts to look dull and dying, the fresh, pure white beauty comes out to say hello. Along with the dusty pink sedum, pastel pink anemone and purple asters the yard perks up again.


I just wanted to plant some lilies…

Tonight I wanted to plant some lilies. Two pots of Casa Blanca lilies, to be precise.

They have been sitting behind the garden shed (which once was a chicken coop eons ago!) waiting since the day I brought them home from work… a month ago. Now they are budded and beginning to bloom (and smell like heaven), and next week I’m going to be gone for 5 days, so I wanted to get them planted before I go an they die because no one is here to water them. The problem is, the spot I wanted to plant them is undeveloped hillside. I while back I hired a strapping young one to dig and hack through the wild grasses to prepare the ground for a new flower bed (because we all know that’s exactly what I need!), so at least that part was done. But it’s a hillside, and like the rest of the hillside I’ve conquered, I intended to put in tiers with loose-laid rock walls, as seen here.

The upper tier is still a work in progress.


As I was saying, before verbosity too hold and we got carried away, I just wanted to plant the lilies. Just dig a hole and plant them, and worry about the stone walls and tiers and landscaping and whatnot another time. But of course that didn’t happen. Two hours later I came in to shower, covered with dirt from head to toe, sore hands and aching back, a good 8′ section of stone wall in place, a patch of rogue sumac pulled up by hand (because I’m dumb that way) and a large swath of the hillside leveled and smoothed and beautiful, ready to plant. But of course I didn’t plant anything. It got dark and the mosquitoes were descending en masse. I guess I know what I’m doing tomorrow.

The Ugly Old Chair (and how we fix it)

Behold my desk chair. A reject from my dad’s work place, brought home… 12 years ago? 15? It’s been around for a while.  It’s wearing out. It’s still comfy, but the vinyl is cracking. With the hot weather we’ve been having, of course I am wearing shorts, and the tears are painful against the skin. So. We must fix this.

Click through to see What Happened to the Ugly Chair.

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