"We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike." ~Maya Angelou

Monday, August 3, 2015

A Reprieve and An Inventory

 This happened this morning: every window thrown open, curtains floating on the wind, 73 delightful degrees outside….fabulous. Oh my stars and garters, what a relief to the soul. TYJ. I am so glad I drove home last night. I would have missed it.

Out the south door I flew to ooh and ahh over the flowers, every plant giddy and spilling out of its bed with joy.
Here are a few of the beauties I found waiting for me.

The first is the herald of August, Morning Glory,  with a strangle hold on the wild roses, sounding the one month warning to every creature with eyes to see. Who needs LED lights? This is what continually amazes: All that beauty and design hidden in a tiny black seed the size of a lady bug. Think of the white Peony with its splash of red.  Everything hidden inside the seed or tuber, encoded and waiting to become visible. The mysteries of Creation.

Here is the Birdhouse Gourd, wildly charging up my new fence, taking the high ground by storm.
We will gather, dry and store these lovelies in the Fall. They are on the agenda as an art project at Farm Camp. 

I realize most gardeners have cucumbers by the bushel basket by now. I have only these two, so far.  They will be sweet and crisp, swimming in cold, tart vinegars and herbs. It has been a battle for even these two; I am happy they survived.

Their neighbor, Butternut Squash, has done very well, following an early dusting with Sevin powder. I usually refrain from insecticides, but not with the squash family. I have found other  means that work: hand picking, blending bugs and garlic into a spray, chickens. They all work…sort of…some of the time, but I never win without the chemicals. That being said, if I dust them early in June, and the plants survive that initial attack by the squash bugs, I do not need to treat them again for a long time.  The bugs have a breeding cycle and I can get out of sync with it if I dust during the first big push.  I love the shadow play in this pic.

And then we have these blushing beauties: peaches off a volunteer tree which grows right outside the back door. This is the first year for it to bear and the fruit is delicious. I have been taking them here and there, giving them to my kids and anyone who comes in the door.  Today I need to actually can or freeze a few of them. They have been discovered by the wasps and Japanese Beetles and I'm sure there is an Oriole around somewhere who is spreading the word. (Yes, those are party lights from the wedding last September and never taken down. What? I think they're festive in all seasons. You should have seen them when the tree was covered in snow. Do not judge, my friends.)

I will end with this final shot.  This is my new America Rose, a climber. It sat hunched through May, June and July and now has begun its climb up the fence, past the bee house, and has one dark pink blossom and a bud at the top. Oh, you sweet thing: I see you have decided to stay.  I used to have one of these roses growing in much the same spot, on a trellis, but lost it. In 2001, after a rough spring and summer, it put out one very late blossom on September 11 and then the entire plant died to the root. A lot happened that day.

That is the quick tour, there is much more happening: the fortissimo yellow and scarlet Cannas are beginning to bloom, brightening up the back of the Earth Circle, large Sunflowers have bloomed and tipped their heads to make seed for the little bright eyed birds who planted them last winter, the Basil is going to seed, Purslane is painting every garden edge in neon colors. "Oh my, my…oh hell yes…", you know the tune. As Able would say, "PARTY!" No one can party like Purslane in August, when most flowers have limped off the dance floor and fallen in a brown heap on the ground. I have it planted everywhere there was a spot available.

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