Larry.s Creative Zone

Larry.s Creative Zone

Monday, July 31, 2017

In The Garden......








Thanks for stopping by today. 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Sunday Shots........


I planted the garden a month late so my first pick of tomatoes was yesterday, with this one yellow tomato. It is small but had the real taste of a real tomato.

This blurry shot shows that there will be more to come. I am still fighting off Japanese beetles everyday, but the beetles don't like tomato leaves. I am happy about that. My smaller varieties have plenty of little tomatoes on the vine, they just have not started to ripen. We do have a few fiends that are anxious for them to ripen as we do like giving them to others.



I thought I had lost this plant during our one heat wave. The whole plant shut down but lots of nurturing has brought it back. It has started blooming all at once the past few days.

I bought it as a hanging plant but that seems to cause them to dry out more easily. I now just keep it on the deck right outside the door so I can keep the watering on schedule. This is the time of the year where flower gardens can shut down with August weather. I hope to keep things alive for as long as possible. I can not believe as to how fast this summer has passed.



We have been having a lot of puffy clouds the past few days. A panoramic camera would be great to have at the time.  I had a panoramic, inexpensive camera years ago, back when they still developed film.  It took great photos but it was for only a short period of time as film technology changed. I will someday pull those old shots out and share some of them.


I took a lot of shots of the swallowtail recently but it has not been back. I try to be careful with the bug spray, using it only on the leaves. The beetles only land and eat the leaves. They stay off the flowers. That still might keep them away. If I were not spraying, there would not be many leaves left.

It is a sunny day today with cooler temperatures. We will take as many good days as we can have. Thank you for stopping by today.


Saturday, July 29, 2017

Sat. Abrev. Post........


One swallowtail was enjoying all of the blooms in the zinnia patch. I took a lot of photos of the butterfly.  I have seen a monarch at the front garden but I didn't have a camera with me at the time.  I am wondering what other kinds I will get on the three rows of blooms.


It was a bright sunny day that helped to get good shots of the flowers and butterfly. It was warm out there but not extremely hot like we had the past week.

The past few days , I and my neighbors mowed down some of our shaggy  grass.  The most of the yards are not green and are not tall enough to mow, but some of it still grew up enough to make it look weedy. It actually seems cooler than it really is with a breeze.

I do think I will water the flowers again this morning as a safety measure. I lost a row of petunias during the hot spell even with regular watering.  I have one tomato that is starting to turn red so I don't want to have them go bad on us.


It is Saturday and we are heading for the bookstore.  I have lots of chores to get done before we go but it will be nice to get a break.  I did work at the house yesterday, clearing more things out of the garden shed.  I was throwing things away that I had from my dad's garage. My late brother's things also hit the dust bin too. I have horse shoes that are rusted beyond recognition that I think will go away.  I don't think they are salvageable unless someone can tell me how to clean them. I hope to drink coffee and have a scone today while being lazy.  Thank you for stopping in today.


Friday, July 28, 2017

Last Day for this Week......






The small rabbit doesn't seem to be afraid of me while I was out spraying bugs. He seems to be only eating grass which grows along the garden because it gets watered next to the zinnias. I have not seen the larger mother rabbit for a long time. I did get to watch a kestrel eat a small bird out on the neighbors fence this morning. I know the kestrel only eats small birds and rodents but I really don't want to watch it happening.



I shared this on my photo a day a few days ago.  The tiger lily that I kept saying was not living anymore in my backyard, put out blooms this summer.  I have dug it and brought it to the new garden. It didn't seem to bother it to move it as it is blooming more with its steel post support.

It is Friday and the weekend is almost here.  I wish everyone to have a good day and thanks for stopping by today.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

A Garden Surprise.........


I was out and about spraying those continually pesky Japanese beetles and looked down as I checked my volunteer vines for bugs.  To my surprise I saw a melon laying there on the edge of the grass. The former owner dumped things on the garden in the fall and then would till the various material into the soil.  I had volunteer vines and I just let them go. I have iris starts in the area and the vines will not bother them. I waited to tell my wife until later the next day when I showed her a photo of it

I don't like the feel of the leaves on the vines so I have not really been looking to see if anything was on the vines.  When I see blooms everywhere, I don't expect to see much more as they were late starts in the garden.  So digging around yesterday I found two more melons, side by side. I can't tell you how many times I have planted melons and never ever got any melons. I am assuming these are muskmelons because of their coloring and yet there is the one there that doesn't have that same texture.





This one makes four that I have found. It seems to be smoother and I will just have to wait to see how they develop to determine what they really are. Among all those vines I really am seeing one that reminds me of a watermelon vine.  That may just be wishful thinking. So far, I see no cucumbers and that is fine by me.







I spent a lot of time watering the zinnias and sunflowers as that was what I had planted and  I wanted them to survive our long heat spell in the past.  I did spray the vines with some water just because, which they really did respond to it. I assume this is a yellow squash. There is only one of them but maybe all those other blooms will give me squash too.




I had to spray for Japanese beetles for the third time now. They seem to fly in and eat during the hotter time of the day.  I was disgusted that they came back the second time but I am assuming our light rain washed away the insecticide. I will go out again this morning and check on the zinnias as it seems to be their favorite foliage.

The three rows are all becoming the same height now. It should be a showy set of flowers if I can just keep the foliage from being destroyed. The sunflowers are growing many inches a day as they get rooted in for the season.

I am sort of resting again today.  The dumpster at the house was taken away for the last time so that shows how far I have come with the old house project. The rest will be cleaning and painting and changing the pumping under the kitchen sink.

We had a half inch of rain last evening and it was so needed.  I will spot mow the yard today where it is longer than necessary. Thanks for checking in on me today.  I hope the weather is being better for all of you in your different areas of the country.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Middle of the Week.......


The rain is coming today.  It actually is not coming from the southeastern direction. It is entering the state from Nebraska, west of us and will be here by 10:00.

I will be out planting the coneflower somewhere out there in the back yard before the rain. I am pleased to see the blooms are turning from orange to red as the blooms mature. It needs to be pulled from that pot as it dries out too quickly while sitting out on the deck.

I also have this sickly looking rose to get planted this morning. It is a different kind of rose for me and was a good sale item. The whole bush is a gangly-looking thing too that needs to be taken out of the pot and put in the good earth. I know there is a certain term for this kind of rose but I don't know it at this time. I know some of the English roses look more like this than a tea rose. I am alway an optimist with buys like this as I know I can get it to grow better than it does at the nursery.

I was watching the  "America Pickers"  a couple of days ago and I am amazed at how much people can collect. I laughed about myself as I brought this box to the house a few days ago.  I gave it a bath and it is cleaner than it has never been before since I acquired it. I have a series of shots of this and lots of words to say about this box but I will spare everyone today.  It is an egg crate. The eggs were stacked in layers with cardboard like spacers. I could see there being 6 layers of eggs packed in there. The part of history that I like about it is the marks of the farmers who used this. There are patches over holes. There are pieces of lathe nailed to reinforce it from falling apart. I also have a family name written with a crayon on the box.  Enough for now of sharing my box.


I trimmed back all of the roses in the front of the house and they have been getting some extra  water once in a while. They are now blooming again.  I took this photo from a distance as I didn't have shores on to get close. The camera said it was going to focus on the new bud and as you can see it did its job.


It did not cool down much last night but 76 F. is better than nothing for our weather right now. It still is promised that we will be 88 F. by the end of the day, after the rains. Thank you for stopping by today.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Old Things and New Things......


Another project for me to do in the future. My grandmother Brooks' walnut dining room table  is moved and ready to be refinished. I received the table as a teenager from my grandmother as a gift for all the things that I did for her.  I painted her house and some rooms inside of her house. I really never thought of it  until later that she wanted me to have it for payment for the deeds.  My brother was moving to California and gave her a chrome kitchen set with chairs and she was so happy with that. The table was disassemble and hidden in an upstairs closet until I was ready to take it.  My grandmother had a brother that liked to beg her old stuff from her and she said I was to get it out of the house as soon as I could.

The special things of its history is that my grandmother got the table from an older neighbor.  The date would have been probably in the 1930's.  The rails at the bottom has the name of Woodbury, Iowa stamped on it.  The small town still exists today and is east of Osceola, Iowa. The patter of a burl on the one drop leaf is beyond amazing. The burl of a tree is the growth mound on the tree that shows up as a unique pattern in the grain.


The bottom of the table is quite weathered and helps to show its age. The hole is intended for a leg to be screwed into it.


As a kid, in the late 1950s, I remember this table being in the old, low ceiling of my grandma's house. It would be stretched out as far as it could go with many table boards added so all the family food items could be placed on it. I clearly remember seeing it covered with dishes of all sorts of good and desserts. I can still see my grandmother's red yellow with fruit and marshmallows. The middle hole held the middle leg to support the weight of all those table boards.


When I first moved into an apartment with this table, I removed the middle leg as it just looks unusual.  I know that it is the authentic original way it should be, but I am already thinking I will remove it again.  I did bring some table boards from another table that I might be able to use with it to make it into a long table for use. The white casters are also original with the table.


If you have ever grown the larger sunflowers you remember how fast they develop. I think there are 7 or 8 of them growing in a row.

The opposite view of the sunflowers shows the closeness of all the things growing there.  The zinnia rows are really close and have really grown large. The volunteer vines are creeping up on the opposite side. I am letting the vines grow out into the yard so far but if they get out of control I will have to redirect them or cut them off. I may put steel post next to the sunflower if they get to lean too much.

I still have a three things to get planted but my emphasis this week is to be at the old house.  As long they seem to be surviving in their pots I won't worry about them.



The dumpster that I am using at the old place is leaving the property tomorrow. I won't tell you how many of them that I have had but I have reached a point that Wednesday will be its removal date. Today I will do the last minute panic things that I can get into it before it leaves.  I still have my wonderful white truck that I can fill up and take things to the landfill, but I really won't need to do that for a while. It is suppose to get very hot today so I will leave early this morning and come home early.  I watered the flowers last night because of the forecast today.  I lost a row of petunias next to the house as no watering kept them alive during such high temps last week. I might replace them if there are still petunias out there anywhere to buy.

Thank you for stopping by today.  Stay safe and cool please.

Monday, July 24, 2017

First Day......


Another variety of tomato is showing off with its produce on the vine. I am ready for any one of my six variety to ripen soon. I have two different smaller varies including the cherry tomatoes and the smaller yellow pear-shaped variety. I had placed some hardy geraniums among the plants in the raised bed and I can see that I need to dig them up and move them where they can be seen. Things really did fill in with the tomatoes and herbs.


The Japanese beetles returned and I had to dig out the spray again. The neighbor lady told me that there are trees in our park that have been completed stripped of leaves by those bugs.



The robins like to sit on the back of my fake goose. It seemed to be handy while I was out taking photos and spraying bugs.
I have volunteer vines growing in my garden from the former owners garden.  I am thinking this is a squash of some kind. I hope the season last long enough for I can get something from this vine.
I am thinking cucumber but if it were a muskmelon I would be happy.  Again, it all started to grow late in the season so I am do realize that it may have been too late for them to mature any produce.

I am headed to the old place this morning.  I had to stay away for a while to heal up my aches and pains. It is cool this morning so I will go early and do those things that still need to be done outside.

I hope that everyone is cooling down today also.  Thank your for stopping by today.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Awaiting Blooms......


I am awaiting to see the bloom on this large hosta.  I moved this to the new garden and it did't lose a leaf. The Des Moines Botanical Center employees are on flower watch of a plant called "corpse plant.  It blooms every five to seven years and this plant has never bloomed. The plant is suppose to bloom durning night time so they are on watch by camera too. The public has also gone crazy over the coming event.   I will be anxious to see the result of rotting human flesh fumes being spread throughout the dome. If it opens up for only a short time, then they won't have to shut the place down.

This hosta was growing in a crowded location for a few years. When I moved some of it to an open location the leaves started to grow large. I was surprised that it had such large leaves but am glad I found out that it did have them. "Sum and Substance" is the name of some large hosta plants but I am to sure that this is it.

Another project that developed as we moved to the newer house. The piece is an old set of drawers with mirror that I restored 40 years ago. It had dark brown varnish on it and I took it off to find this color of wood.
When it was moved to the house in Woodward I took it apart, using the base in the dining room and just hanging the mirror on the wall above it.  The bracket stayed in the basement for all this time.

Hammering in the piece back together with the original nails and adding some glue, put it back together holding it with a clamp.

 My sons had a great grandmother Stevenson, who they hand never met. She lived to be 100 years old, spoke mostly Norwegian, and died in 1971. I did meet her a couple of times but was not able to really talk with her. I wanted the dresser because of its need and it was free. Removing the finish of dark varnish was fun when the wood underneath was revealed.  I did find the one wooden knob that had fallen off of the bottom drawer. The will be the final job to call it done.

My wife's friend at first wanted this for her tv stand and then decided she didn't want it. I brought it to the new place to give to her and then there is sat in the garage. It now has been recommissioned and placed  in our spare downstairs bedroom. We were just going to give it away a few months ago.



These are Big Boy tomatoes. I don't have a clue as to know when to expect them to be ripe. When they do, I will be glad to eat them. Usually I have never kept track of the maturing of these things as I would just plant them and wait for red colors to come. These were planted late so it may be a few more weeks before the turn color.


I have a lot of new colors of zinnias this year that I have never had before because I used brand new seed.  I went out to shoot photos of them last night and had to go back to the garden shed and get the bug spray.  The Japanese beetles were back eating on the leaves of the zinnias.  They also were eating on the larger marigold blooms and this time they were on the sage plants hanging out on the blooms of those plants. The green sage had bugs but not the purple sage.

It is Sunday and we are cooler today. I wish everyone to have a good restful day. Thanks for stopping by today.