succulent

succulentThis succulent (and other plants) gardening thing might become an addiction. Luckily, I think it’s a pretty healthy one. I decided to go big and brought home this lovely thing a few days ago – it’s about 10 inches across. I’m reading Succulents Simplified in an attempt to learn how to best care for all these plants I keep buying, and even attempting to remember the Latin names. I believe this guy is a Dudleya Pulverulenta (aka chalk lettuce). Like always, I have a whole board dedicated to just succulents.

I love the way succulents are like sculptures. I’m enjoying the creativity of putting plants together in little arrangements that are pleasing to start with, but with patience, eventually become something lusher and richer. I think this pot needs something to creep over the edge to finish it off, some kind of sedum, probably.

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Now if you’ll excuse me

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, I have to go water some plants.

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this spring

This spring has been nearly perfect up here in our little mountain town. I have loved every last daffodil that has bloomed, cutting weekly bunches to enjoy on my desk at work.

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I usually had some company while I cut my bouquets. Hi Pixel!

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I don’t have any ranunculus growing in the yard, but a $5 bouquet from Trader Joe’s in shades of peach and coral made me happy for over a week.

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The lilacs were amazing this year, and I  use that word sparingly. Last year, just as they were about to bloom we had an icy snow storm that killed them all. I guess they decided to make up for it this year.

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I’ve been documenting all the ways I’ve been enjoying my flowers on Instagram

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I’m momentarily without flowers for cutting, so I’m planning on some summer dahlias (see here for some of my inspiration), and ordered a few varieties from Swan Island Dahlias. We have lavender and roses growing now, so I’m hoping to have a few little bunches to clip and arrange soon. In the meantime, I’m also thumbing through The Flower Recipe Book, and dreaming of filling the house with bunches of flowers.

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more Spring Fever

I don’t have too much to say, because I’d rather be outside than in front of a computer.

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I can’t possibly choose my most favorite flower, but I sure do love these little grape hyacinth. We planted a patch of these about four years ago, and they’ve come up faithfully every year since without any demands or special needs. I didn’t see any sign of them a couple weeks ago, and was afraid that they had finally succumbed to our neglect. But I needn’t have worried, a couple days ago hundreds and hundreds popped up, seemingly overnight. The daffodils are continuing to bloom and I hope to take some pictures of the various varieties this weekend.

And since there hasn’t been a chicken picture here for nearly a whole month, I also took a picture of the chickens milling about under one of our oak trees the other morning:
Chickensmilling
I rented a cute little PBS documentary the other day called, “The Natural History of the Chicken“. There actually wasn’t much chicken history, just a bunch of people who understand the allure of chickens as I do. There was a short segment about how laying hens live that really turned my stomach. I don’t think I can ever buy eggs grown like that again. I shared some of our eggs with all our neighbors, and I think I may have some regular egg customers. One has already placed a standing order for a dozen a week.

The sunshine and longer days always fill me with energy, which has me making big plans. Who knows how much I will actually accomplish, but so far by big plans for Spring include:
*Put up a clothesline. I just bought this clothespin holder to make hanging up my wet clothes much much more fun:
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Don’t you want to come hang up laundry with me?

*Build at least two raised planting beds, one for herbs and one for vegetables.

*Clean up all the various scrap wood piles, some left by previous owners, some the result of a fallen fence.

*Lay paving stones, which are piled here and there, in front of guest house for a new little patio area, near future clothesline.

*Paint ugly black iron table and chairs a cheerful turquiose to go on new patio area. Cover seat cushions with cheerful oilcloth.

*Paint inside of guest house light, bright white.

There’s much more to add to the list, but I better stop there for now. Happy Spring!

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