Larry.s Creative Zone

Larry.s Creative Zone

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Things to Do and Share.............


I took many photos of the swallowtail in the condflower patch.  It didn't seem to be too bothered by my presence as it was eating nectar as fast as it could.  My zinnias are not open yet but I am hoping that the two kinds of flowers will bring in more butterflies.  I tell more about this story of the butterfly on my Larry's Photo a Day.



My wife's pot of dianthus are growing wild.  I can't take enough photos of them as they continue to increase their number of blooms.  It did take a long time for them to establish in that soil but regular watering and fertilizer has helped them to do well.  Remember all the photos of the single lines of flowers but now there are no lines, just bunches of blooms.


This may be a reposting of the photo but I wanted to share how it is blooming.  The daylily next to it isn't doing as well but I decided to removea low hanging tree branch from the area. It will do better next year.  It is strange how you don't notice things about the growing conditions of the plants until you see them bloom.  I had trimmed that tree back this spring but I guess I liked how the branch look not on how it was a long branch shading plants from the sun.



I am reposting this photo to share about my project for today.  I cleared away a very aged forsythia bush yesterday.  I wasn't going to do much physically but I did get a lot done in that area.  I now need to build a new fence area where I had removed the bush. The bush was a visual barrier to keep the dogs in and there also was a woven wire fence next to it.  The forsythia was  mostly dead wood and was at first hard to get to as it hid behind the scratchy barberry.  Once into the area the reciprocating saw made it light work.  I even had a wheel barrow of leaves sitting under the bush to tote away in the wheel barrow. I had two loads of dead wood and green wood. 

My new fence design that I have to solve is to incorporate an existing wooden fence with either two new sections of fence or one larger section.   I may create a z shaped fence line as that seems easy and also makes the backyard be a little larger.  I will show shots later of whatever I will figure out.

I have to go out and remove things from my garden shed so I can get to the attic of the shed for  2 x 4's to help in the construction.  It is sad that the shed is so crowded that I can't get anything out the  door because it is so full.  If I remove wood pieces I will be making more space in the shed and that is a good thing. I have salvaged glass doors and an antique cupboard in there that really need to be reused.  But that requires a whole different set of projects to get them ready to be out of the shed.  Hoarding is a serious problem you know.

It looks like a good day out there again today. I am anxious to get more things accomplished.  It is cold but it will warm up soon.  I will wear a sweatshirt at first then shed down to cooler clothes as I am out there.  Thank you for your appearance today at my blog. 

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Wednesday's Wonders.......


I don't have a great bookkeeping system to remember which photos that I have already posted.  I guess that there are a few photos that never make it on my postings as I think I may have already used them.  Sometimes my mind will sharpen up and spot something that I had not use and I bring it out even though it may be a week from when I shot it. Unfortunately my photos are so similar that I could easily not post them when in doubt.






 I posted this plant earlier while it was still in the budding stage.  They are coming out now even though you can see there are parts that are still not in bloom. I have this variety all wired up so it won't fall to the ground this year.  When the plant gets dry it tends to flatten out and the edges go to the ground.











This rose seems to keep giving me blooms as I trim back the dead blooms.  It has only two stems on the rose and I don't understand why it doesn't put more stems up.  It was late in sprouting out this year and it was just slow as it came up green and healthy once it started.













The third bloom now for this peace rose proved to be a great one.  When it was unfolding its petals it looked like it was going to be distorted and have a bad shape.  I am going to figure out how to over winter this plant as it doesn't like our severe cold.  I know a man in a town south of us who covered T roses every fall with three feet of straw.  I don't think I want to do that but I will try to get creative to insulate it.





I am fighting off bronchial problems today from last night.  The pills I take for that are hard on my system as I don't react to them well.  I am fighting the residue feelings from the pill this morning but will perk up by noon. I have no warning as to when the attack is going to hit and it doesn't seem to be any one thing that brings it on but maybe I will see a pattern to it someday.  Fresh grass cutting used to be the signal but that wasn't it yesterday.  I have a few things that I want to get done today and I should be able to do that once I get started.   We are cool in temps again today.  Thanks for stopping  by today. 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A Sunfilled Morning......


The great white hardy geranium shows off its lack of color. The white variety never puts out a large set of blooms like the other colors of geraniums do.


My large white clematis puts out a lot of great blooms in June.  It then gets the disease that I have heard about on the blog where it all dies down.  It looks like I have severed the vines when I have not done anything.  This year when it did this it started new growth. At the base of it the small white bloom came forth.  I don't know the name of the disease but it has developed it the past two years.  I am glad that it does stay alive but it sure doesn't look like it will be after it gets hit.







After this photo was taken I went to the area and pulled some weeds.  I seem to have weeds in all my photos. I watered the petunia beds last night with rain water and add some fertilizer in the water.  They need more water than I put on them but they all got a taste of the magical potent.









My last photo for today is one of the pinkish hardy geranium.  It looks dirty because of the rains.  Usually there are bugs on them but not this one. 

A guy that lives a few blocks from me called out of the blue yesterday to ask about my dead redbud tree.  He wanted to cut it down for me.  I guess it bothered him as he walked by each day.  I told him I had it on my list of things to do but sure he could do it.  I actually have a bigger chainsaw than his but he says he helps the town out by cutting things down in town and taking the branches to the landfill.  I was good with that and helped him load his truck with all the branches.  The tree was gone in lest the thirty minutes.  I am not sure what I will do today but I will just go out and get started.  Weeds are being eliminated and volunteer mulberry trees are disappearing.  I finished all the mowing yesterday and I moved some hostas into my new garden area.  I won't photograph until more is planted in the area. 

It is cold this morning again but it will warm up today.  I hope all of you are well and thanks for dropping in today.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Monday's Thoughts......


My friend Bernie gave me this daylily a few  years back.  I rescued this pathetic set of roots from under the spreading juniper, moved it to another open area and in just one season I have great flowers. Bernard and his wife are good friends of ours who we don't see often enough.  He went through school with me through high school graduation and then we sort of lost track.  About eight years ago we ran into each other at the daylily sale up near a small town of Luther.  It was at the arboretum at their yearly sale of lilies.  Since then we do keep track of each other but life does seem to be too busy to see them often. I always call it Bernie's blooms.



A partial victim of our two dry summers is this Asiatic lily.  I have a total of three buds this year to bloom.  I use to have to tie them up from the weight of all the blooms.  There was another lily planted next to them that is not alive anymore.  This is not a tiger lily but its spots makes one think that it is.  The volunteer mulberry tree makes great greenery filler for the photo.  I have to hit that garden area again to eliminate the non flowers.





A project that is in the making is to restore this windmill base.  My dad made these many years ago and this one of the two that I have has rotted at the bottom.  Instead or replacing the one leg I am thinking about cutting the four legs down to a shorter length.  I use it as a tower more than a windmill. 

The blades for it are in my basement in pieces and I don't think I will ever get that back together.  I almost put this in the burn pile but I will give one more chance to be.  Yes, paint will be included and it may be blue as that is the kind of paint that I have on  hand. My other windmill towers sits at the back of the house and it too needs to be painted.

This particular hosta is a late bloomer compared to all the others that I have.  It is just starting to open its flowers.

I am not working at school anymore as a janitor so my day is partially mine.  I have a lot to things to get caught up on.  The world will not stop if I don't do them but there are things I would like to get done before winter sets in again.

I will finish the rest of my mowing this morning.  It is so cold that I am debating whether to dress for the cold or just go for it and hope my body warms up from pushing a mower.

The weeds around the flowers are calling to me and I have yet to start taking down a forsythia bush and the dead redbud tree.  It is time to go and get to work.  Thanks for reading my many words and viewing the photos.  I have turned into a flower blog right now as that is what is happening.   Take care everyone.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Sunday's Showing...........


I have mentioned before that I have volunteer coneflowers in my tomato patch.  These tomatoes are a cherry tomato variety that is larger than the sweet 100's.  All of my tomato plants are in bloom and the ones that get the first sun in the morning are with small tomatoes on them.  The other end of the row is behind in development.  All of them have really rooted in and have grown in height the past week.



My yellow day lily that is larger than most, continues to put out their striking blooms. There is a rose bush behind them that has put out a new bud again.  I hope it does well as it was the transplanted rose that I really did want to keep alive.  I water it a lot to keep it going as it sits on the south side of the house and doesn't get much moisture from of the rains that we have been receiving.






I finally got a good shot of the bee balm.  It was a cloudy day and the wind was not blowing.  The flower is much darker in color than this but I did get a focused macro this time around.  They have really spread in the corner of the fenced in backyard and the tree above, the ash, is now showing the effects of the insect that is killing it.









The frequent rains have kept the creeping bluebell in bloom.  Last year at this time I was already mowing it down and the blooms lasted only a couple of weeks.  The entire plants shriveled up and turned to dead stems.  The bottom buds this year are all that are blooming now but it still gives me some blue violet colors in the garden.







I took a lot of shots yesterday and in most all of the photos one can see weeds.  I will not be retuning to school to work anymore so maybe I can hit a flower bed each day until they are cleared away.  Even in the best of photos there is a stray dandelion leaf sticking out behind them.  This flower bed of my wife's has to be watered a lot as it sits almost under a pine tree.  When I weed it there will be a lot less green leaves around the flowers.






The brown eyed Susan is struggling this year but it is going to put out a few blooms.  It is being invaded by coneflowers and I think I will just move the Susan to my new garden area.

No big plans for Sunday and will take things slow today.  My physical needs are to recoup from all the work that was done with hanging doors the past two weeks.  I am not damaged or that much out of shape.  I am just old. I will do less weight lifting while doing garden work and mowing. 

Thanks for stopping by today. Have a great Sunday.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Saturday's Stuff.......


This is the  largest coneflower bloom in my patch.  It is surprising that  they are all different sizes but I know in dry years they are smaller. I guess the older the plant and the more water that it gets the larger the flower.  All the others are spreaders from the last two years. The bugs are on all the flowers in the garden as they glean off whatever it is that they eat.  Sadly the roses get at least one hole in a petal from a hungry bug or worm.

 I don't know a lot about phlox other than they are easy to grow.  They can become invasive.  I did notice that my pink colored phlox is putting out a whiter version of the flower that started up from spreading seed.  This phlox grows in another part of yard and I do remember buying at a greenhouse. It as it has a deeper color.  I may put extra water on this one as I do want to see it in full bloom this year.

I really don't know if I can dig it and move it after it blooms but I am thinking that I could get more of this color moved somewhere else.




I mistakenly bought sunflower seed that was of the more exotic kind.  It is shorter and has red colors in its blooms.  I went back and bought the larger sunflower to use for birdseed.  This one here is the redder kind of sunflower as you can see the foliage has red veins also.  I can see the bud head in this photo but I didn't notice it when I took the photo.







Here is another shot of my petunia pot.  The little yellow flowers are increasing in number.  I will have a purple and yellow accent area soon among the orange peach petunias to give variety to the planting.  Walmart planned that as I just bought some cheap flowers in a plastic container that needed to be watered.The petunias do have a great smell in the evening when we go out to be with the dogs.

My pink version of this rose is not doing well.  I may dig it and move it to a better location.  I think it is planted in an area that was previously a rock pathway grown over by grass. I think it would like more soil in order to grow.  

I have mowing to do today.  I didn't take Wednesday off so I need to play catchup on the grass.  It looks good but when I start to mow it I know it will be thick and harder to mow.  I can push through it but I need to go slower.

Friday was my last day of work at school for the summer so I can now get back to weeding the garden and mowing grass more regularly.  The summer seems to have going by too quickly.  I hope we can get out a little and do stuff that non working retired people do all the time.  At least we will be free to go do things rather than being held in a schedule.  We have no travel plans Hopefully we can get our small dog to switch back to a different time to awaken in the morning.  He got us up at 5:15 this morning,  the normal work schedule time but it is Saturday. That does have to change. 

I hope all are well today and will have a good weekend planned. I appreciate you stopping in today at my post.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Friday.......


The tomatoes are developing and hopefully we can eat them in a couple of weeks. I think these are a larger type of cherry tomato.


Hot and dry weather has helped bring on some fungus in the dogs back yard.  I doubt that they are edible.


This smaller daylily is blooming very well.  Last years three stems of these made me think I was going to lose the plant.  I was surprised to see this explosion of flowers out at the garden area.

Last day for subbing as a janitor.  They cut me off four days short because of some technical reason, nothing that I did wrong.  I am glad it is done.  There are 14 more doors to install today, only if they are dry will they be done.  There is plenty of other work to do.   I am glad that it is Friday and am looking forward to having the weekend.  Maybe we can sleep in a little bit longer than the 5 o'clock time after today.  Thanks for stopping by my posting.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Just Blooms for Today......






I have been blogging the night before as I get up at 5 in the morning to go to work.  I am tired tonight, have a sore finger and ache all over.   I have rougher days at work than others but today was a tough one.  We spent an hour trying to install hardware to double doors in a hallway.  Nothing was fitting or working while we worked.  I finally realized that someone installed the wrong set of doors in that location and we had to go out and find the right set of doors to trade for the ones we wasted so much time on.  It was a frustration that just isn't good for the body.  Thanks for hanging on and checking in today.  By the way, Friday is my last day to work as a janitor.  I will take it a day at a time until I make it through to the end.  They moved up my last day as the secretary decided that was when she was going to do the checks.  I could work for free the next four days but that isn't happening.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

In the Middle of the Week........


I took this a few days ago of this very large daylily.  It is the large variety of daylilies and it really makes the smaller lilies seem dwarfed. 


This smaller daylily is a new one blooming for me.  It appears to be a late bloomer as I wasn't expecting to see a different variety. The blue background is an error of hitting the wrong setting on the camera. 


This is the time of the year when the squirrels start to chew off clumps of leaves.  I have clumps all over my yard.  I didn't believe that they did that until I was out in the yard with the little dog and a parachute like clump of leaves fell to the ground.  A squirrel was above it and I am betting he wasn't planning for it to fall. You can see the nest he is making up in my silver maple tree.  I have heard that it is the younger squirrels that do this.

Working again today at school. It is not to be so hot today as yesterday.  I have learned how to install all the parts to entrance doors to auditoriums and double doors in hallways.  I doubt I will never use that information again after this job but I will definitely have the skill down after all the doors we are working with on the job.  We have a cool front moving in from the north so we will be less hot today.  Thanks for stopping in today. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tuesday's Tattle.........


Getting my dianthus in a row was just a freak of nature.  They just seem to be blooming in a  row. I will need to water these plants as the heat is settling in for a few days.





The rose that is planted next to the driveway responds to the heat.  The flowers are all perky in the morning and by evening they look spent.  The pink rose that sits next to the white one has yet to put out a good bloom.  It seemed to be a little bit more weathered when I bought it and I think it is regrouping.














My redbud tree needs to be removed.  I assume I will wait until August now and also for a cool day to cut it down. I saw in a garden magazine once where they painted the tree a color to make it become a sculptural decoration in the garden.  I don't have the time for that but it would be fun.










I posted a different photo of the neighboring cornfield on my Photo a Day blog. The rows of corn are more distinct in the photo of the distant field.  The corn in the foreground was planted north to south so the top of the corn tassels looks different than the back field.

I am working again today at school.  I am not sure what I will be doing but we did succeed yesterday in getting 14 doors hung in the office area and auditorium.  I probably will have to help take more doors down for the painter to refinish and spray and then I could be a floor guy in the afternoon.  It is so warm here now and the possibility of working outside isn't really advised. 

Thanks for stopping by today.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Monday's Mentions...........


Our mosquitoes are back after the one spraying that was done by the town.  While shooting these coneflowers I could hear the neighbors up the street trying to have a barbeque. I bet they ended up in the house once the meat was cooked. I didn't stick around very long to shoot these flowers.






When volunteer coneflowers want to come up in my tomato plants I figure they can just get along with each other.  I also have many hollyhocks coming up among the plants. The tomatoes are putting out flowers and so are the coneflowers in one happy flower garden.














The sad looking plants that came in the container with the orange peach petunias are growing stronger.  I actually think the purple flowers are smaller petunias.  The yellow ones could be identified by a few of my readers.  I don't want to commit to the name at this point.

I am hanging doors again today.  The guy who paints them is ready for some assistance to get them hung.  We hung 14 of them the last week and I know there are another 14 ready to be hung.  I hope we get them done before the heat really settles in the building.

Thanks for stopping by today at my blog.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sunday's Showing.........


I was forced to bring this planting closer to the house once I discovered it doesn't have much soil in the pot.  It was the special I bought last year and the manager had packed in a lot of unsold geraniums into one pot.  The soil was not really the soil you want to have to hold water as it is planted in the mixes that are light weight.  I have to water it everyday to keep it going.  It is quite a show but my plant hook looks lonely out there without a flower hanging from it.


 While sitting on my back step I can see this view.  It is a lot of foliage this year but the flowers seem to be few.  The ditch lily has only three stalks projecting up this year.  The phlox seems like it isn't going to bud and yet I have phlox elsewhere that is in bloom.  We will see what happens with them as they are very tall this year and it would look nice if they would put some blooms on the end  of those stems.  The hydrangea shrub at the top right did not bloom and I am certain it will not bloom as it is too late in the season.


My red zinnia patch, compliments of Far Side,
is doing well. She sent me seed to remind me that I needed to plant some this year.  I need to get out and water them today as we have a heat zone moving in for the week.  My other patch of mixed zinnias are looking this good too. I am mulching with grass clippings this year as often as I can.  I still get some weeds coming through but it is easier to keep the beds clean with the grass clippings. I don't like the interruption of emptying a grass collection bag so I only collect three batches each mowing session and then leave it off to do the rest of my mowing.






I have about 12 plants of sunflowers out there and they too are getting grass clipping  mulch.  The sunflowers really seemed to develop at different rates this year as the whole field of them are at very different heights.  I am thinking that I will see some buds on these in a couple of more weeks.  As fast as they grow it will be a couple of more feet higher in two weeks.












My trellis on the garden shed is starting have morning  glory vines reach its very top.  I assume the vines will start growing across as they reach the top and there is no farther for them to go. No blooms yet but they seem to bloom more in August around here so I am not surprised.  This was a package of mixed colors seed so I will be anxious to see what colors that I have.

On our way to Sunday school to teach this morning then a sandwich will be had afterward.  I return to hang another batch of doors at work tomorrow so I am trying to get rested up for that.  Being at work by 6:00 in the morning is one of the hardest parts of it plus tomorrow we will hit almost 90 degrees F. outside.  The non-air part of the building is where I will be helping out so it is good we are done by 2 in the afternoon.  

Thank you for stopping in today and I hope you all have a great Sunday of rest.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Saturday........


This is the year for the hardy geranium at my place.  I have mentioned it before but this year the plants  have enjoyed our weather.  No more hot and dry weather as the past two years.  We even have cool nights which the plants seem to enjoy.  I am starting to have to water things and that isn't a bad deal considering last year I would water to just keep them alive.  I couldn't get the blooms because the water was needed to keep the foliage alive.







The white hardy geranium really is one of my most striking bloomers with the white being in high contrast to the dark green leaves.  It does seem a little more fragile compared to all the other different colored ones.It doesn't go into a full sized set of blooms like the red ones do.












Here is another view of the tea rose that I have.  It has another bud to bloom so it will last a lot longer than I expected.  I am still researching the kind of Peace rose that it is as I keep finding so many different colors of it on the internet. 

Home today from a harder than usual day of work at school yesterday.  I am glad to have a free day back again and will do a few things around the place.  They, the town city crew,  finally sprayed for mosquitoes after a lot of complaining citizens mentioned that we pay you all year for this service.  It was like instant success as I can now walk in the garden again without anything bothering me.  I was snapping photos for a while while doing a dance to keep moving to keep them off of me. 

I hope everyone out there is having a good summer.  It seems to be going fast as we are finishing off July in a few weeks.  July 31st will be my last day working as a substitute janitor.  I mentioned to my wife we really do need to do something to celebrate that being over and done.  I seem to be in sporadic retirement and can't call it quits yet.   Thanks for checking in today and have a good weekend all of you in the cyber world.

I should post a warning that life gets so busy that I sometimes repeat photos on my post and I am not aware of it.  I am going to start looking for nonflowering things too as I seem to be in a rut.