Friday, June 30, 2023

Fried out Friday.....


I have added a sculptor to out two posts of flowers. He was hiding under a hosta at the back of the house and I think he is better out front. 



 I have my first sunflower bloom already. It isn't so tall but there is plenty of time for it to grow.

I have two that are ripening. The plant itself is root bound and isn't growing up.  I hate to dig it up to check its roots to see what happened but I have never had one like this that just isn't growing out or up branches. 

I don't know that name of this plant. It could be a yarrow but I don't remember buy it. It reminds me of one of the different plants that the former owners bought and they just keep coming up. 

All my pasts yearly Easter lilies are all blooming at the same time. They seem to be crowded by the dinner plate hibiscus and I really don't want to move the lilies or the hibiscus. I will just live with the crowding one more year.  

We got a half inch of rain early morning so the shots of my morning flowers are wet. We really were glad to get the rain.  I woke up hearing it on the roof and thought the air was running. I then heard the thunder and realized we are actually going to get a rain. 

I have always been fascinated with the day moons.  I just have to take the shot especially since I could just stand on the front step to take it. 

It was too hot for me to work outside this morning.  I had to take breaks and finally had to just quit early. The heat can really drag the body down when one isn't even noticing it.  I did  mulch out a whole bag of it and it was a job I had been putting off.  

Thanks for stopping by this Friday.

Thursday, June 29, 2023

The Sun and the Moon....


 We woke up to more smoke and high humidity. Our index went up about four or five points and it does not feel good to be outside.  It didn't make any difference though as I still needed to water things.  We got a sprinkle of rain this morning while the front passed by us below in southern part of the state. 

My Easter lilies are now blooming while the regale lilies are all spent now.  They just turned brown a couple of days ago.  I don't know the kind of lily the Easter lily is but it is different than the regale. 

This Asiatic lily is doing well now and the slight rain should help it some.  I will carry water for it tomorrow. I want to keep those buds blooming. 

My window view with the sun is causing St. Francis to glow. I like how one takes a photo and wonders why I didn't pull the dead leaf out from that plant. 

I have always admired jade plants and  wish that I could grow them big like some of the ones that I see on the market.  I did finally get one to grow and my secret is to just ignore in and water it very seldom.  I give it a good drink but not very often just like a cactus.  I did have one part of this break off a year ago and In ow have successfully grown a second one. 

I worked outside a little today but found it was the day to talk to all the neighbors.The woman to the north and the man to the south.were needing me to listen.   I also had a conversation with two dog walkers with their two Yorkies.  I was asked about my variagated dogwood and she wanted to take a leaf home with her to see if she could buy one.  When I told her the name she was really excited that I did know. When I told er it was a memorial planting for the loss of our border collie she got a little teary eyed.  So all of us were out filling our lungs with the humidity and smoke. All the conversations did cut in on my work outside.

Thanks for stopping by today.

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Smoke and Mirrors...Humidity Plus.

 The sunflower was chewed off by a rabbit.  When the plant recovered there are two heads instead of one.  It won't be such a tall sunflower.  I have already had to stake one of the others as they do tend to lean. 


While standing on the deck with my camera in hand this butterfly landed near me.  It is leaning down on that smooth railing.  I think it might be an admiral butterfly but I never saw it with its wings open.  I couldn't find anything on the net that matched it.


The monarda took a hit with two years of drought.  I am just glad I have this many blooms at this time. I have red ones also to the right of these.  Arlyne, former owner,  planted the purple ones and I moved the red one here from the old place. 


My plantings of these at the old place had spread to a large area under a tree.  The tree was cut down and I am not sure it did so well after that.

When I think of stargazer lilies I think of the ones that are multi-colored with patterns. When I order this I got a set of them in different solid colors.  This still has that wonderful fragrance that comes only with stargazer lilies.  I have one other that is in tan colors. 

The air was too heavy with humidity and smoke for me to be outside today.  I just chose to stay inside and didn't plan on anything.  I did get some different things done this morning.  I had to clean a fish tank and set it up again ready for transferring of fish to a bigger tank.  I had a footstool than needed a newer covering that matches the one I had done a couple of months ago. I didn't take long to pull of with a staple gun and some tacks.  It was harder to get my body forced to start it and get it done.  I made various appointments this morning that I too was procrastinating on doing.  I will walk to the mailbox and breathe the air but that will be about it for my outside experience today.  I know other states have been suffering the bad air the past few days. We do have wind this afternoon that is moving things around.  

Thanks for checking in today.

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Summer Continues....


The early morning sunrise had lots of color.  There was a heavy humidity this morning and it did cause a haze over our view of the sun.


 As I mowed the front yard I could see that the petunias are trying to fill out.  I have been watering them as we haven't had rain for quite some time. The sun does hit this for most of the day after it comes up over the neighbor's house. 

I am curious as to why my hydrangea shrub doesn't have huge blooms.  I see one up the street and I am sure it is a new hybrid one. It has huge large blooms on it.  This is the old fashioned one that has grown along older house foundations. I brought it down from the older place.  I am wondering if this  shrub doesn't like the clay soil.



My morning glories are starting to send up vines.  I would thing by next week I might even get some flowers. I noticed that I hadn't been keeping up with the watering and had one box that was wilted and dry. 


I finished off my stepping stones project and I am happy with it. We have warmed up again today to 85°.F.  It is less brezzy so it feels hot.  I started my day mowing wearing a parka and move to just a short sleeve t-shirt by ten o'clock.  Our grass has slowed down in its growth and we will quit mowing once a week.  

Thanks for stopping in today.

Monday, June 26, 2023

Monday's Mentions.....


A Dutch iris is now blooming.  I had ordered some from a company from Holland. I was so frustrated with how long it took to get here. I would get a message a month later that  the order was finally in the United States. Any way, I planted them thinking I would never see them bloom. So here in the end of July I have the first bloom. I am pleased with this one bloom.  I am curious to see what other colors that I may have in the future blooms.

My wife put together the large pot of flowers first.  In a week later I decided it would be more interesting if there were more.  The second one is slowly trying to catch up with the larger one. I find it interesting to see what people put out on their front steps in spring. I could see my turtle statue looking good joining them.  I see this year that railing planter boxes are popular. 

The clusters of roses show the different stages of development.  The deadheading did take place on this bush but a lot of it was still looking good. This is the only yellow rose that I have ever grown so I really appreciate it a lot.

I don't remember the name of this but it was one with butterfly included. The former owners had a lot of plants that I have had to learn their names.  

I mowed the backyard this morning wearing a long sleeve shirt.  After a break I started digging the holes for these stepping stones.  I inherited these as I would have used smaller rock.  I did start digging out the grass and worked in about six of them into the yard.  I have three to go and that job will be done.  It is a lot of work and I just had to quit at six.  I will have energy tomorrow to finish the last three. I will finish mowing the front yard first and then be glad that project is done.  The holes where the stones were removed will take a season to get them to grass over but it is good to get it altered. 

We cooled off today in the mornings but it will stay hot and dry all week. I will be watering things to keep things growing.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Sunday, June 25, 2023


 We were surrounded by clouds yesterday evening but never really got any rain. The glow from the sun made the clouds look large.

Above all of the clouds was the moon showing brightly in the sky.  I call them day moons and it probably not a good term.  It was so clear that I could get a great shot.

On the ground yesterday I spent time deadheading seven different roses.  I also took the time to really cut back on an eighth rose, William Baffin, to reduce its size by a third.  The rose is a climber and the branches were getting to be too large that I couldn't maintain the grass around it nor keep it attached to the trellis because of its weight.  Above is a victim of a reckless cut of one of the bushes.  I did wear gloves and still got lots of wounds from the thorns.

This is the before shot of this great rose bush.  All the flowers were gone and I knew that I had to take it back a ways for new growth to take place.  I won't show you the trimmed version until it starts to bloom again in another month. Deadheading each cluster of flowers would have taken hours so taking the branch back made it a little faster.



My day lily bloom season has started. We are in Zone 5 and this seems to be about the normal time for them to start. I have a couple of them that are just now starting to shoot up stems. 

I just can't get the right photo taken of these but this one isn't too bad.  I have a water barrel that keeps showing up in the background so I have the camera leaning against it right now know that it won't be in the shot. I have seven stems of these this year, the best for me in the six years I have been here.  I am having memory problems when they were first planted but I know they have spread as I did not plant seven bulbs.  One of them is from a start from my grandmother Brooks.  She had them growing behind her old house and would tie them up with bulky jute bailing twine, attaching it to a large nail she had hammered into the side of the house.  She would brag that she counted 35 blooms on hers.  My mom took a sample from it and I now have that same start. I do think I bought a new regale lily to plant next to it in case the one that I moved here didn't grow.

We are less hot today but it still is warm.  We are having the predicted strong winds today and it looks like we will have the wind all day.  Other than the wind we will have a quiet Sunday here.  If it gets hot enough we have three different neighbors on our side of the street with pools and there will be children of all ages making the joyful sounds that comes with a swimming pool.  I wish you all to have a good summer afternoon.

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Friday, June 23, 2023

Friday's Finds.....

 We have a new visitor from across the street.  We see them cross the road just like the rabbits do. I like chipmunks as they remind me of my summer years in Minnesota where we would buy peanuts for them and they would get pretty excited about them.

People are known to gather at Stonehenge to worship the coming of the Solstice.  I don't have anything like that here but the space between my two trees gives me the same effect.  As the earth tilts back the sun will be behind the blue spruce soon on the right.  

The work on the step stone recovery is done as of yesterday.  I dug out all the grass around the stones by hand with a hooked blade as my tool of choice. You can see the one stone is still overgrown with grass while the ones above it have been cleared. I find fault in them of course as I don't think the guy put them in the right height. I think in the back of my mind that I may pry them up with a shovel and spread and inch of sand under them.  Yes it is too obsessive compulsive of me so I may have to battle the idea out of my mind.  Or, I might just do it next week when I am rested up from all of it.

I had to dig out a large stone that ran up against my square block.  I got it out of there and placed a different narrow stone in its place.  So one can now step on it to start off away on the path.  I have the other area of stones to dig in but I am waiting to see if I can get the perfect arrangement of them.  I removed one and scattered them farther apart.  I may do the same and reduce the number to make the stepping stone effect look natural and not like a lot of kids lined up waiting for the drinking fountain.


 It is so hot outside that I have to keep taking breaks to cool down.  I watered the tomatoes and some select plants that are in bloom.  The lilies looks a little weathered with 90 ° F. temperatures.  I did get too  hot and finally just had to come in as the simple tasks were even exhausting. 

I have a couple of sunflowers that are developing.  I planted some more, new seed, and I can't seem to get them to germinate.  I did think I saw one poking through but I didn't think they were that hard to grow from past experience. 

We are looking at the possibility of rain tomorrow.  With hot weather like we are having  the severe storms come with it.  It will continue to be hot after it rains and the rainfall prediction amounts isn't that great being less than an inch.  I hope we get more.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Thursday, June 22, 2023

Hot Thursday.....


One of my favorite daylily that I moved here from our old place. It was purchased at an arboretum when they would have a daylily sale of hundreds of varieties. They would be in bloom so you can see your purchase.  We met friends there and went out to eat afterwards.



This is our neighbor's daylily that is right next to our flower garden. On our property line we share sets of  utility boxes and the previous owner and our neighbors have planted things around them to sort of cover them from view.

One of the six stems of regale lilies is leaning into the hydrangea.  It is my all white garden, not a planned one, that just happened.  

Nothing was planted there originally and I thought things growing around the water tank would be a better thing.  The hostas just happened too and I now have to use a hose to fill buckets because I can't sit anything under the spigot now unless I smash the beautiful hosta.

The white stairs is a perfect foil for the rose. I have been watering things as we have such high heat and are in a drought situation again.  All of my knock out roses have lost their blooms now and I need to dead head them. I would like them to last forever but it is a part of the natural progression for flowers. I can maybe get two more blooms from them if I get them trimmed back now.

Milk jars from history of long time ago. Anderson Erickson is a very big company in Des Moines making many great products. Flynn Dairy is gone now and I think the company has changed hands a couple of times.  My last experience with milk deliveries at the house was when I was very young living at the old place.  It was nice to have milk delivered fresh back then but I don't even drink milk now due to the diabetes. I share these antique jars because I use them watering jars as well as jars to remove water from my fish tanks.

Times keep changing as now I do live a mile away from a major supermarket and can get milk in an instant.  I go for milk and come back with a cart full of other things.  Those kind of things don't change.  Stay cool out there.  Thanks for stopping by today.