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Posts Tagged ‘flowers’

This past Sunday we focused Flower Power. I grew up with some funky and neat clothes. We had some wonderful flowery sheets and I even have some of those and use them as top sheets to protect our bedding from mountains of cat fur.

winter (either 1975 or 76)

winter (either 1975 or 76)

Each year as I plant more drought tolerant plants and more herbs, I am amazed at the beautiful flowers that some of the plants come out with at times when we have had no rain at all for months. What is also even more wonderful is to see some of them covered with bees and the butterflies working their way from bloom to bloom each day.

My Aunt painted her kitchen cupboard doors.

My Aunt painted her kitchen cupboard doors.

Flowers are amazing. Beautiful. Colorful. Purposeful. Their many shapes and sizes are spectacular. The colors range from bright and showy to soft and subtle. The flowers also have purpose. They pull in the pollinators with scents of sweet nectar and pollen. With out the pollinators we would have no honey, not fruits and vegetables, no nuts.

Flower Power - Old sheet

Flower Power – Old sheet

To me, Flower Power, has a different meaning than it did in the late 60’s and early 70’s. The way I look at it is… flowers do have power.

Bee on my spicy Italian oregano

Bee on my spicy Italian oregano

Do you think flowers have power?

Sincerely, Emily

You can see what else I am up to over at Sincerely, Emily. The topics are varied, as I jump around from gardening to sewing to making bread or lotion and many things in between.

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Just plain pretty! Enjoy

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Ever since I (Sincerely, Emily) planted larkspur and poppies, they come up in new and different sports around the gardens each year. They surprised me and came up in the vegetable garden 2 seasons ago, and each year some self-seed before I take them out. It is hard to take them out when they are still blooming (the butterflies thank me). So more come up each year. They are pretty!

volunteer larkspur***

My (Alexandra) garden is about to peak. I do a garden party every year and try to judge just when it will hit. I might be a little early this year, but when everything hits that bloom-moment together, pretty just doesn’t say enough.

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I’ve always wanted to have a space in the garden dedicated to cut flowers for the table. Somehow, the vegetables always take over and demand all of my time and the cutting garden gets moved to the bottom of the to-do list. This past fall, I was a little overzealous when ordering my spring flowering bulbs and ended up with 700 tulips (I know, that’s a lot of tulips and I had a total of 2500 bulbs to plant). This was just the thing I needed to make me realize my dreams of starting a cutting garden. I have this ugly hillside in the back of the property that I’ve always neglected. It was planted with an invasive ground cover that I’ve been trying feebly to eradicate for the entire 9 years we’ve lived here. I spent a few days digging it all out, working up the soil, and planting tulips and a few other naturalizing bulbs. This hillside will be perfect for tulips because it’s dry and the soil is fairly lean.

The hillside burst into bloom this spring and it’s been a beautiful addition to the garden. I especially enjoy this little corner because only I can see it. It can’t be seen from the road, but I see it from my kitchen window and through the glass doors in the dining room. It’s like the secret garden of Chiot’s Run.


This past Sunday I cut a lovely bouquet to take to Easter dinner along with the rolls and sourdough bread that I always take. I figured it would make a beautiful addition to the table, and it did.

So often in our gardens we focus on feeding our bodies. While I truly believe vegetables can be beautiful in their own right, flowers feed us in a different way, especially when we bring them indoors. I’ve sprinkled this hillside with black peony poppy seeds and I’ll be adding seeds for a few other flowers, along with planting nasturtiums to spill over the rock wall in front. Hopefully this garden will provide beautiful blooms for my table all season long. It won’t feed by body, but it does feed my soul!

What’s your favorite flower to have on your table?

I can also be found at Chiot’s Run where I blog daily cultivating the simple life and over at Eat Outside the Bag about REAL food. You can also find me at Your Day Magazine, you can also follow me on Twitter and on Facebook.

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Most of us are in the full swing of summer. That means the weather’s hot and the gardens are growing like crazy. Blooms are everywhere and the birds and bees are busy as can be. Here are a few of the things that are blooming in our gardens.

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Here at Chiot’s Run I love flowers, I have large front foundation borders filled with a mix of flowers, fruiting shrubs, and vegetables. Each year they get bigger and bigger and I expand them out taking over even more lawn.

Most of the flowers in my gardens are beneficial flower for the birds and the bees. I have a lot of herbs and a lot of native plants that provide pollen and nectar for the bees and herbs for my teas, like this anise hyssop.

Of course some flowers are planted simply for their intrigue, like this ‘The Watchman’ Hollyhock.

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It’s Jennifer! Down here it’s been hot for a while. These are the Dog Days. Grass starts to brown and blossoms wilt. Rainy days, when they arrive, bring a much needed respite from Summer’s heat.

sunflowers by the Kid

Although we still have blossoms it seems their colors reflect the warmth that is covering much of the country.
cosmos

We keep what we can alive without supplemental watering. That means a lot of drought-resistant plants and natives.

gold

Our water barrels are reserved for our edibles.

pumpkin blossom

and that’s okay by me. I’d rather focus on staying cool than do extra outdoor work in this heat!

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Kim here...I don’t usually have many blooms other than those that lead to edibles.  But due to a funeral and a fundraiser at my house I have many ornamental  flowers blooming….along the front walk, on the back patio.  If I’m not careful I could make a yearly habit of adorning my house with such lovely blooms!

But a lovely as the purposely planted blooms are…

They can never be as lovely as natures own floral arraignments!

What’s blooming in your garden right now?

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Purple is a definite sign of life here in Tennessee.

teeny tinygrape

pasque

spiderwort 'Sweet Kate'

It’s also a sign of good eats!

cranberry
sweet potato gnocchi with brown butter sage sauce

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I’m not a fan of the red, yellow and orange flowers. I find something very cool & soothing about purple flowers though. My gardens are predominately filled with purple, pink or white flowering plants. Like many of the other color days, I have a Flickr collection featuring all my purple photos.

I’d have to say my favorite purple would have to be the wild black raspberries that we pick every summer. There’s something so wonderful about their deep purple color and their wonderful flavor. I freeze them on a cookie sheet and we enjoy them in cobblers all winter long.

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Happy Sunday all…Kim here sharing a little purple!


What’s your favorite purple thing?

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“There is no blue without yellow and without orange.”

Vincent van Gogh

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Here at Chiot’s Run, I love grouping images together by color. Over on my Flickr Photostream I have a few sets that are organized by color. For today’s YELLOW theme I made a snapshot of my yellow collection on Flickr.
Yellow is such a happy color, it really does look beautiful against the blue skies. Is there anything more lovely than a sunflower towering above you against the sunny blue skies of summer?

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Kim here…yellow has so much energy in it.  It wakes us up and makes us smile!

Sunshine and sunflowers and daffodils…

Pollen on little bee legs and yellow peppers…yum!

A pale blushing rose to take one’s breath way!

And even this…

The ornery yellow jacket is even beautiful with his coat of yellow stripes!

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Yellow is a definite sign of spring here in Tennessee.

rainsoaked buttercup

Barberry

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Yellow blossoms are such a happy, vibrant sign of life – but we cannot forget that other great things come in shades of yellow too!

IMG_6377

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meyer lemons

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What’s your favorite yellow thing?

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I don’t know about you but at the end of the main growing season I always have all these notes in my head about what I loved and what I would do differently next spring.

So instead of taking the time to go try to find some paper that isn’t wrinkled and scribbled on and a pen that actually has ink…and then try to keep track of the list for 9 months…

I am going to make my ‘notes to self’ right here on the blog…hope nobody minds.

NOTES TO SELF

  • Tomato cages are wayyyyy better than this…it worked well for the cool spring but tomatoes need cages to grow up in…those tunnels did not control them nearly enough.

tomato tunnel

  • Remember to build more tomato cages before next year.
  • Yarn does NOT work as well as twine for green beans, it stretches in the rain and all the beans fall down…so don’t be lazy and go find the twine next time!
  • Put a self-closing hing on the garden gate…the dog likes cucumbers.
  • While we are on it…cucumbers do well with water.  Bitter is not the best flavor.Plant more flowers…

sisters1

  • Make more compost.
  • Growing peppers and eggplant in tunnels is an EXCELLENT idea, please remember do this again.

eggplant plate3

  • Pumpkins are great fun to grow…more are needed next year.  Try some new colors.

blk wht pumpkins

  • Squash takes up a LOT of room, remember this so the compost bin doesn’t get covered with vines.
  • Barrels are great for potatoes but you would need many, many more to have a large harvest.
  • Plant out gourds sooner…

spider grd1

  • Plant out cantaloupe later.

cantelope3

  • Yum, yum peppers are simply the cutest and sweetest peppers ever…grow lots more!
  • 6 foot wire fencing is perfect for growing peas.

pea picking1

  • Chickens fly…chickens escape…chickens invade!
  • Chickens love young pumpkins, which will grow up to be ugly hen pecked pumpkins.

eggs6

  • Remember to enjoy the process…
  • Always, always  involve the kids…even when they annoy you.

tomato napper1

  • And don’t hate the camel for doing what a camels does…

broccoli8

Which is anything he can do to try to reach your precious garden.

  • Reinforce the garden fence!

Finally…

Remember why you do this every year…

For the health of your family and the health of the planet.

Besides…

Its fun!

So fellow gardeners…what notes have you made to yourself for next year?

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