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Garden Notes


Probably 15 years ago, maybe more, I discovered this plant, a trailing flowering vinca. It was only carried in one particular nursery and that nursery closed many years ago.  I found it a couple of times other places, but in the last years, I'd given up ever finding it again.  This year here it is!!!!  I plant 8 hanging pots every year on our front porch, all matching.  I needed very heat tolerant plants and enough to fill the eight pots.  Well, the trees have grown in all those years, so I now don't need to worry so much about the heat tolerance, but I'm excited to have these again.  I've only ever seen three different varieties of it.  Two kinds of pink and one white with a pink center.  This is the only variety that this nursery had enough of to fill my pots.


I paired them with a common non flowering trailing Vinca Vine.  I had to buy new pots this year too as a couple of my old ones cracked or the hangers broke.  Having rope suspending them is new to me too and now I have to go adjust the ropes as some are hanging crooked like this one. I do like the look of the rope though.  I found these at Menards.  I'm putting it off because it will be tedious to get them to hang just right. I hope they do as well as I remember them.  I'll keep you posted.


I am experimenting with potatoes in tires this year.  And, I guess potatoes in general.  First time I've ever planted them.  This spring I had time to get them in early and I look forward to creamed new potatoes and peas.  My husband, nor any of my children, have ever had the delicious fresh from the garden dish, and I was a child when I had it last.  Time to rectify that!  So we will add more tires on top of these two and add more soil and continue on up.  I'm not sure how many tires we will be able to go, three maybe?  I'd love to hear from anyone who has planted potatoes in a similar way. I also put a few spuds in a row because I wasn't sure how I'd access the new small potatoes in the tires without messing with the growth going on when the peas are ready.  (First time for putting in regular garden peas too!)

I planted lots of flower seeds this year.  But with the cold spring they are a little slow to get going.  I started quite a few indoors, but once transplanted, again with the cold, they are dying or just barely alive. :(  I got so excited about the Love Lies Bleeding from last year, that this year I ordered seven different varieties of Amaranth!  I'm hopeful to get at least a few of each variety to grow.  I'd also like to hear from anyone who plants Amaranth.  One variety can actually be grown as a crop for the seeds and one variety is a noxious weed in Nebraska.  I think all are edible.

I hope you all have a really nice weekend!


Garden Wreaths




Yesterday I watched a live "lunch and learn" with Kim Klassen and Aileen from Prairie Girl Studios to learn how to make wreaths from vines.


I've made wreaths before, but she made them a little differently than I did, and I like her way better. :)


The first nine (sometimes I get carried away) were made with wood vine that grows rampantly around here! I love the little tendrils that are part of the wreath.


The last one I made was from small willow tree saplings.  Aileen used willow too, but a willow bush. I was pretty sure the trees wouldn't work as well, and they didn't.  But, now I know.


Another thing I took away from the Lunch and Learn was to make them in different shapes.


I really like this one.


I have had one large wreath in my tank garden for quite awhile. Here is a link to how I made it into a planter one year. It was left over from my daughter's wedding.  


I hadn't really thought to add little wreaths anywhere. As I left this lesson, I was inspired to make more and put them everywhere.  So, now my garden will be full of wreaths!


I have Wild Grape, Honeysuckle, and Bittersweet Vines to try next. 

However, first I need to get my garden in order.  

So's the plan anyway.

A big thank you to Kim and Aileen!

A Morning Walk


Yesterday I went on a morning walk with my camera. :)

~Come along~


I go from looking down and in to up.


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My son discovered these wild flowers growing out on our place!


He identified them as Large Beard Tongue.


They are from the snapdragon family and one nick name is Wild Foxglove.


Both connections are clear.  My first thought was Foxglove?  And the little girls said they looked like Snap Dragons. 


I've seen their dried seed pods around, but didn't know what flowers they had come from.  From what we read, the flowers won't last long.  I gathered up some dried seed pods to scatter more seeds around!


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The Cottonwood trees are just beginning to shed their cotton and this little piece was suspended on an almost invisible web.


A woodland floor is a magical place.


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Another wild flower, a Common Mullein.


I just love the texture of the leaves.


They love the poor, sandy soil too.


There was still some dew on the soft, fuzzy leaves.

So much to do outside this time of year!  Some things are coming up in the garden. But the seeds I planted went right in before the cold spell and rainy days so I need heat for them sprout.  Sure hope they come up.



By Jill Ruth for Mary Ruth


My very dear friend sent me these pictures from her garden.  The boots are the ones she wore to work at a steel mill.  She retired in 2002 and planted them with these wonderful succulents, Sempervivum, hens and chicks.  The plants are thriving in them.  When I saw the pictures, I knew there was so much more to them.  They were metaphoric, more than just beautiful.  There was a story or a poem in them.  This morning it came to me.



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