The Azalia’s are blooming

One of the first signs spring is near is when the Azalia’s are blooming.

We planted ours about 35 + years ago and they have always performed quite well.

I wanted to plant Azalia’s because my grandmother loved her’s so much and every time they bloom I think of her. They are a gentle reminder that even though she passed away many years ago some people always leave a footprint on your heart & soul.

Azalia’s are not a lot of trouble you just have to remember not to trim back past the first of October or they will not bloom in the spring.

The beauty of these plants is the show they put on each spring as a gentle reminder life is full of beauty take the time to enjoy the view.

Azalia1Azalia2

Lowes garden clearance

Every time I go to Lowes I have to go out to the garden center and check out the clearance plants.

I prefer the $1.00 ones and most of the time there is plenty to choose from that still look very good. The dollar ones are normally the pint-sized pots.

This year I have bought 12 Yellow trailing pansies and 20 Red Laser Cyclamen .

To give these clearance flowers an extra boost I miracle grown them 1 x a week for a month.

The normal price of these flowers would be $180.00 I paid $32.00.

Let’s just say SCORE!

I also purchased some red geraniums at Josephs Garden Center in Manvel. I had a few coming back from last year they were red so I stuck with the red and yellow theme for my purchased flowers this year.

I love springtime and adding a little color to the yard is something I do every year but usually, I spend a lot more money.

 

Ladybug vs Asian Beetle

The ladybug and the Asian beetle look very much alike but there are some differences.

Ladybugs have a red color and a black head. The Asian beetles are more orangish red and have a white face.

If your home has been invaded by what you think could be a ladybugs chances are its actually the Asian beetles.

These beetles will bury inside of the roof of a dogs mouth. There was an article posted in December in the Houston Chronicle about this. I will enclose the link.

Asian Beetles in a dogs mouth

I took these pictures on Wednesday with my macro lens so they are still hanging around.

Look for the white head then you will know it is them. Some people say these beetles bite so beware.

Never let your eyes fool you what you think is a cute ladybug might be the evil twin in disguise.

Asianladybug1Asianladybug2

 

For the love of garlic

There are many benefits of cooking with garlic and we use a lot of it it is a very healthy thing to have in your diet.

Elephant garlic is our favorite type to grow. It makes this beautiful flower then when it dies it is time to pick the garlic. When you dig it up you will find the bulbs of cloves and seeds for the next year.

I truly love photographing these blooms, especially in macro.

Garlic

Heirloom Tomatoes

We love gardening and trying new things but we only stick to Heirloom varieties for vegetables.

These yellow/orange tomatoes are called Persimmon and they are a meaty tomato. The taste is wonderful and it will wake up your taste buds.

The big ones average about 1.25#s each. They are huge.

We have them in the greenhouse in dutch buckets using gravel no dirt, the no-till garden and in pots.  We were experimenting to see what works out best and produces the biggest and most fruit.

The largest tomatoes were grown in the no-till garden. The temperatures have gotten so hot we have added 40% shade cloth over the outside vegetables.

Our greenhouse is getting up to 97 degrees and the plants are paying for it. Even with fans, shade cloth at 40% the sides rolled up and the front and back doors opened we can not seem to get the temperatures down below 90 degrees. The auto drip system for watering is set for 5 x a day.

The joys of gardening are figuring out what works best and enjoying what you have grown.

Persimmon1

 

 

Calibrachoa hanging baskets

A few years ago I found a hanging basket of flowers at Lowes called Calibrachoa and I fell in love with them.

They are also known as silver bells and as many articles on the internet say they are like a tiny petunia on steroids. I prefer two colors mixed and the colors really do not matter.

This year I have seen them at several places but the average price is about $12.00 for a gallon pot of them.

They need full sun and water every 3-4 days they will bloom their hearts out for you

I had found the wire baskets and coco liners at Walmart for $10.87 and that was just what the Calibrachoa needed to really stand out.

I have 3 baskets full of these little beauties two of the yellow and red and one of the purple and yellow placed near our pond on the post.

Nature can always put a smile on your face surround yourself with the great outdoors and plenty of things that bloom.

Hangingbasket2Hangingbasket1

DIY – Succulent table

Recently I was on an auction site that had the baby change table tops that go on top of a chest of drawers.

I started bidding and believe it or not these things are $150.00 – $200.00 each. I ended up winning 4 of them for a grand total of $22.00 for all of them.

After staring at them a few days I came up with the idea to use to some table legs I already had and make a succulent table.

I had my husband put the legs on the table and reinforce it then I mixed up some grey chalk paint and painted it all. We then lined the inside with some of the leftover greenhouse plastic.

It was starting to look pretty good. I went to Lowes to check out the clearance rack and low and behold there was a large pot of succulents piled in this container that would be $12.00. Well, that was a bargain because small succulents are generally $3.00 each this was about $75.00 worth of stuff.

We added some soil and I planted it and I love the way it turned out. It sits on our back porch and really seems to like the area.

As far as the other 3 changing table tops I gave one to my sister, and we are making the grandkids a lego table with the biggest one it is a foot longer than the others. That leaves me one to do something with and I am thinking it might make a good potting table.

Use your imagination to figure out how to repurpose something into something new you never know what you might come up with.

Succulent table1

 

Tiny little details

When using a macro lens you have to have steady hands or use a tripod.

I tend to try to take the pictures by hand and lately have had a little less success with this. It might be time for me to drag out the tripod or monopod.

This shot shows off the tiny details of a knockout rose bloom. These roses start blooming in early March and bloom their hearts out all year long. They require very little maintenance and I truly love them.

Closeuprose

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