Monday, December 31, 2007

Just for fun..

can somebody tell me what the label thingies are for? And how do you get them? Do you have a 'Label Assignor' on the loose out there, or do the words just pop out of your post?

sry Iam so slo.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Elliot the Turtle

This is Elliot.
He is about 2' long, with a body that is about a foot wide. Very cute.
The Master is busy.
I have new birds too.

A great Christmas gift!

I got some of these from my friend Virginia. Nectaroscordum siculum.........I was unfamiliar.

This morning I looked them up on the Google. They are Alliums! Some of my favorites!

Characteristics & Attributes

Exposure - full sun
Moisture Needs- Average
Critter Resistance- Rabbit, Deer, Squirrel resistant
Nature Attraction- Butterflies
Growth Rate- Medium
Secondary Plant Type- Spring Bulbs
Bulb Bloom Time- Late Spring
Foliage Color- Green
Uses- Naturalizing, Rock Garden

I am going to get them in the ground today!

Saturday, December 29, 2007


This is the cute little worm. He is about 3' long, and 18" tall. I think he will be called "Edward".

Busy, busy, busy.....

This is a work of art in progress.

I was watching him from the kitchen window, and all I could see was 4 legs on this critter. I knew he said it was going to be a worm.....
I was surprised when I saw it has 10 legs. He is putting eyes and expression on it now. What color would you paint a creature such as this?
Pat was by here the other day, and being the practical soul that Pat is, suggested that he could take that pile of metal 'stuff' to the place where they buy metal. I thought 'The Master' was going to swoon!
Not even when he is gone should I get rid of his stuff! Do you have any idea how many things he can make with all that stuff?...........

Texas Rose Rustler

This is not about the TRR, but rather about a rose. Not even a Texas rose, just one that grows here in Texas.

I got an email from 'Don and Pat' this morning, letting us know that they need/want things for the TRR Newsletter. So, this is what I sent them.


rosa 'Aimee Vibert'

I have this rose. I love this rose!

I first saw it in my absentee neighbors yard, and I coveted it from first sight. It grows under a big old hackberry tree there, with never a bit of care, watered only with rainfall, and never fed.

I decided I would have a cutting when the appropriate time came. Actually, the appropriate time would be whenever I had time, but I was on a dead run all the time, and just didn't get over there to 'borrow' a cutting.

Then one day, it was gone. I was horrified!

As it happened, the neighbor had 'pruned' the rose.
In August.
He cut it to the ground.

I looked around for the cuttings, as I knew they were somewhere. I found them on the 'burn pile'. (Those things designated as needing to be disposed of made up the 'burn pile'.) The rose had been cut for at least 3 days, so I didn't have much hope for the survival of any stuck cuttings, but felt I should try anyway.

So, I drug a nice cane home and cut it up and stuck it all. I had 7 nice cuttings.

I got 7 rooted cuttings.

This is the toughest rose, so hardy in heat and cold. It responds to the slightest kindness with beautiful blankets of delicate blooms. Starting with the palest of pink, it actually blooms white in big clusters, and the fragrance is amazing! In my garden, this rose blooms off and on for the whole of spring, summer and autumn. I have never had to spray it for any disease!

I would urge everyone to try this rose in their garden. It is a winner!


And I included the picture and info from Google Images;

This is one rose that I hope I always have.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

December 23

December 23 is our wedding anniversary date.

We usually make our gifts to each other. This year, my spouse outdid himself, as far as I am concerned.

For the life of me, I cannot remember what this stand thing is called, but it is a wonderful help to me in my office.

I have several big books that I use regularly, but this one is used more than any other. It is The American Horticultural Society A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants, and it weighs a LOT! I have had it for about 10 years, and I worry about doing harm to the binding. I don't want my book to fall apart.

So I was delighted when I got one of these stands, whatever they are called, as an anniversary gift.

My Sister TOO, saw it yesterday and she wants one for her big books.

We could probably keep him busy for awhile.

I hit the jackpot.....

I found a cazillion seeds on my Shell pea vine, also known as Butterfly pea vine. It has the most brilliant royal blue flowers in the whole garden, and it blooms all summer and through the autumn here. Mine comes back year after year, but I don't know how hardy it would be in a less mild climate. Best to treat it as an annual, I would think.

I have a lot of seeds, and I am willing to send them to my interested blogging friends. Let me know.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

umm-umm- good!

Very exciting news here! We cut this stalk of bananas about a week ago to protect them from freezing. We always cut them green and hang them in the shop to ripen. There were 12 bananas on this stalk, and 11 are surviving now.
They are ripe now, just perfect to make a banana pudding and a banana nut bread for Christmas.

We are soooooo lucky!

An amazing sight....

We witnessed an amazing sight last night.

We had gone to Victoria, about 30 miles down Hwy 59 from us. I don't know far it goes north, but it goes straight to Mexico from here.

The trip south was a regular, normal drive. Kind of heavy traffic, but Friday evening, the last weekend before Christmas- I just figured it was Christmas shoppers.

We had a delicious seafood dinner, by the way. The first time we have eaten out in a long time.....

Back to my tale.

On the way home, about 10:00pm, we saw the most amazing sight.

The southbound lanes were bumper to bumper traffic. We are flat land here, and it was headlights as far as you could see. Never a lull in traffic, never a little space where maybe a vehicle could jump in line. It continued for the entire 30 miles that we travel Hwy 59, until we turn off on our little FM road to home. I can only imagine how far north it started.

Sounds silly? Well, not to me. Those cars were rushing home for the holidays. Headed home- TO MEXICO!

It was frightening. Have we allowed all those polititions to give our country away?

Honestly, when I hear 'But they do the work nobody else will do...' I cringe.

Who did those jobs before the illegals came to claim them?

It seems to me that we did our own dirty work back then.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Other treasures to collect...

Isn't this sweet? This is called 'Heartleaf hibiscus'. It is a native of Texas, grows very easily from seed. The leaves are kind of furry. It seems we grow more and more natives in our gardens now.
This is Jatropha. There are many, many varieties of Jatropha, and I am not sure which botanical this would be, but this is the one we grow in our gardens. It will freeze, but usually will come back from the roots. This one makes a little ornamental tree, blooms most of the summer. I have seen it get to about 10 feet tall, with some protection in winter.

A lot of bio-fuel is being manufactured from some varieties of Jatropha now, I think, and it is a big part of the economy of some Third World countries. Sumatra comes to mind, for some reason.

Foxtail fern is related to the Asparagus fern, only more 'civilized'. It makes little white berries, and does have prickles that hurt if you step on them, but WHY would you be stepping on them?! They will multiply rapidly, and they will get big, so we try to allow for growth when we plant them.
We have very sweet soil, and the ferns seem to like it. I don't know what they would do in a more acidic soil.
Take over the world, probably.

All these things are spectacular when grown with Sweet Potato 'Blackie' or 'Margaurite'.
Also, 'Aztec grass', a form of lirope, is a great companion for any of them them. They are happy in a bit of shade, if necessary.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The beginning of a collection...

These roses are part of a collection. I think they are all outstanding.

This is rosa 'Nacogdoches', now called 'Grandma's Yellow Rose'. This is going to be the new Texas SuperStar rose. Clear, strong yellow, once established, it needs little or no care. Large blooms, wonderful fragrance, and it blooms all year!

This is 'Belinda's Dream'. This rose possesses most of the characteristics of the yellow rose, plus it is disease resistant. No spraying!

This is 'Double KnockOut'!
This is the newest Knockout, I think. I know that the old ones are fantastic, blooming like crazy right now. Just gorgeous!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Makes me wish it was already Spring....

This is a lovely flower to anticipate in the spring.

My Wonderful Spouse found this plant at our local "transfer station". To everybody else, that would be "the dump" Someone had dug them up and thrown them away.

It is a crinum, not sure which one. We call it a 'ribbon' lily, and it blooms for about 3 weeks in the late spring, early summer.

Pretty good for a free plant. I was astonished when it bloomed.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Granny's toys

I am having FUN!

I got a new labeler. This is a 'DYMO LetraTag' from WalMart.

I am labeling everything I can put a tag on. I need to figure out how to pull the backing off, or is there actually backing on this one? So far, I have just put tape over the tags. It works just fine.

I am gonna know where EVERYTHING is in my house! I do need to hide it from the Grands tho. They would love it as much as I do.

This is PINK firespike!

This is the PINK firespike I have alluded to earlier (somewhere!) Pink is not common at all, the RED firespikes being most prevalent. I have 3 nice big plants. I can stick lots of cuttings and eventually have great swaths and drifts of this plant, too.

Odontonema strictum is the botanical, we call it 'firespike', but it is also called 'Mexican firespike'. It is winter hardy in the south (zones 8-11), and tolerates our hot summers as well. A real selling point for this plant is that it blooms beautifully in deep shade or part shade!

This is the RED firespike. This one is common in our area. I do like it too!
Firespike will easily reach 5' in height in a season. It doesn't require a lot of water, which makes it a good choice for us.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Just thinking of all I saved!

My order of 1/2 price bulbs from Brent and Becky's Bulbs arrived today.

Amaryllis bellodonna, with lovely pink blossoms in the late summer or fall.

Lilium 'Black Beauty'. Five of them , and I was thinking of sharing one or two, but I have talked myself out of that. Mine, mine, mine.

Fifty each of triteleia 'Corrina' and triteleia 'Queen Fabiola'. I have never grown these, I may share some of them. Like maybe half. This is triteleia.

Yes, that would soothe my selfish conscience. Maybe.

I have 4 big blue-enameled mugs that are planted with narcissus. They are doing nicely, and I am going to give them to the 'girls' at the Extension office. I doubt they will bloom by Christmas, but it would be o.k. if they don't bloom until later. Something to look forward to in the nasty grey days of January.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The wonderful, fabulous, "Pride of Barbados"

The picture in the header at the top of my page is called 'Pride of Barbados', and is a member of the pea family.

The botanical is 'Caesalpinia pulcherrima', and it is a native of the West Indies. It likes a hot and humid climate. It is an excellent specimen plant or a wonderful addition in a mixed border. It grows easily from seeds, and they are found in large, dark brown bean pods after flowering. (Note- Seeds from tropicals usually require a temperature of 70 degrees to germinate.)

The bloom is usually orange-red, with gold on the edge, and very long red stamens. There are also forms which bloom yellow, and also red.

'Pride of Barbados' will grow to 5-8' in a season, even after freezing to the ground the previous winter. It will return dependably in zones 8 and 9.

This plant is either going to be named as a Texas Super Star, or has already been named such. I know it is definitely a star in my garden!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


I have been guided to the 'font and color' change place.

This is soooooooo much fun!!!

Monday, December 10, 2007


Somebody took my pig!

He is not in his customary space in the front bed. I know I haven't moved him, and he is too fat to just walk off on his own. I don't know anybody else who would care enough to move him....

I wonder if something happened to him that somebody might be skeered to tell me about?

Hmmmmmmm. A mystery.

Help needed, Please!

I would like to move the propagation chamber post to a separate little blog, just about propagation methods.

Does anybody know how I could do that? Just move it as a whole, rather than having to delete and reassemble.......

Any advice would be very much appreciated.

Friday, December 7, 2007

AN tis uh PA-a tion!

I almost cannot wait! The little seedlings of 'Laura Bush' petunia are beginning to appear. She doesn't mind the cold of winter here, and is such a beautiful sight. Her bright majenta blossoms are a real treat on dreary winter days. She has won a permanent place in my garden, and in my heart.

The garlic beside her is a steadfast companion, returning every year.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

MORE seeds!

My friend Jean Anne brought 2 big sacks of seeds to a meeting last week. For me. Mine, all mine.

BEAUTIFUL, smoooooth, seeds, not quite 2' in diameter. Big seeds, and did I say how pretty they are.

These are kind of a light, reddish brown color. They darken as they dry. Just gorgeous.

They are seeds of the Buckeye, a native here.

"Red Buckeye
This is another native buckeye that prefers the shade and moistness under larger trees. Its rich carmine flowers are a spring highlight. Red Buckeye has a rounded habit of growth and will grow 15 to 20 feet high and wide. One disadvantage of this tree is that it may lose its foliage early (August to September), especially during dry summers."

It is usually more shrubby here. This is the info on the native that grows all over in the Hill Country of Texas, and ours is very similar. Ours does have RED flowers though.

"Mexican Buckeye Sapindaceace Ungnadia speciosa
Pink flowers appear on bare branches just after the redbuds bloom in early spring. The tree is multi-trunk if grown in full sun, but more open if grown as an understory tree. The leaves are long and slender and turn yellow before dropping in the fall. The seed pod hangs on in the winter even if the seed fall out. It makes an interesting sculptured look in the winter. It is drought tolerant when established. "

The Mexican Buckeye that grows here blooms RED, but has the habit of what grows around Wimberly.

Anyway, I like it. The main drawback is that it grows slow, but sometimes you need something that will grow slow.

They germinate very easily.

I did share some of them, and I still have many more than I will ever be able to use. I would share.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Is it too late to learn to cook?

I go to read about cooking at Ohiomom's blog,, and I always learn something.

I cooked when I was young. I made all the bread that was consumed in my home at one time. Then I got divorced, and that stopped.

I have 6 children, so I had to cook. But I did enjoy it, back then. I was much better at it then.

I think one thing is that I still refuse to do the convenience thing, but I don't want to take the time to make the good stuff. I certainly don't NEED to eat, and would benefit from being left alone on an island with nothing but low-cal vegetation on it. For about 3 months would be about right.

But..that is not going to happen.

I think I can learn from Ohiomom.

One thing I want to know; Why is brown sugar always measured 'packed'? I was reading about making the "Blueberry Crisp", and noticed that the brown sugar has to be packed.

And I remembered it was always thus.

I want everybody to notice..

the picture in my header!

A simple thing to all of you, for me it was hours and HOURS of work!

I am challenged, computerally. It takes me FOREVER to do things that other people can just whip out in no time.

I got it done, tho.


(More of a loud chortle, actually. heheehe)

Saturday, December 1, 2007

'Tis the time to.....


Must be simple, must be quick. No exotic ingredients.

And I don't want to have to scald any milk. I can never do that right.

Quick and Easy Pecan Bars

2 cups bisquick
4 eggs
1 box light brown sugar
2 cups pecans, coarsely chopped*

Lightly beat eggs. Mix all ingredients thoroughly (dough will be stiff). Pour into a 9" x 13" ungreased pan, and bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Cut while warm.

*You can substitute raisins, chocolate chips, walnuts, dates, or anything else you want for the pecans. can leave the pecans and add those ingredients in addition. Enjoy!

I feel so wealthy!

I was leaving the Extension Office in town, when I noticed Claude raking pine needles. When asked what he was going to do with them, he told me he was going to throw them away!


So I asked if I could have them, and he promised to bag them up and leave them so I could pick them up. AND HE DID!

So, now I have 3 BALES of wonderful mulch material for my rose beds! Free! And I didn't even have to rake them up!

I don't mind raking them, it is just hard for me to find them to rake. We have very alkaline soil, and the pine needles are usually 'taken' or 'spoken for' by the time I see them. They are a valuable commodity around here. LOL

I am rich, rich, rich!