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A selection of the latest gardening news and blog posts.

In a Vase on Monday: Sky Although I decided last week that I would take advantage of the heavenly blue of this Caryopteris for today's vase, its form and title went through many transformations before reaching the end result shown above.

Skinflint Sunday: on a Monday! I finally finished blogging about North Korea on the other blog, so now it's time to get back to regular programming around here. I've missed writing about the day-to-day, and I've got so much to tell you! So, in the 5 months since I returned from North Korea, what's been going on around here?

The art and science of watering Welcome to our little site. Water is life and life is everything! The plants we love so much need water to survive. The average plant is made up of 90% water and is constantly using and replenishing its supply. Water is needed by plants to stand upright and also in the photosynthesis process.

The Geese are Seeking Higher Ground While we haven't been hurricane-flooded wet like the Carolinas, it's been wet this year. If I'm reading this graphic from NOAA's Middle Atlantic River Forecast Center right, we're already about 16 inches over our annual rainfall, and we still have three more months to go:.

I Grew an Avocado Tree?! Avo is the name of my avocado tree. Hey, don't judge me! I have been nurturing this little guy for five months now - although I shouldn't call him little guy anymore because he is getting huge - and I have the right to name him by now.

Fall, so far. Fall is most definitely here. I could tell even a few weeks ago when the sunlight was a little different, never mind that we still had a day or two in the high 80s. The ferns and tall grasses have turned burgundy and gold. Nights are chillier, too. The flannel sheets went on the bed today in preparation for what's to come.

Garden variety post This summer was unbelievably hot in Austria… actually it still is because even though we're more than half-way through September the temperature was a smashing 28°C today*! Apparently Mother Nature didn't get the memo. It's nuts.

Tomato Jam Probably my last ripe tomato harvest for the season. I decided to go with a long term use of turning these tomatoes into a delicious tomato jam. These guys are pretty big and at various stages or ripe. I somewhat followed a pintrest recipe because time and ingredients were an issue.

Turning over a new leaf: ASU students use gardening as a self-care tool Rebekah Winters, president of Cultivate Downtown and a senior studying nutrition, said giving students the opportunity to "de-stress" is a primary function of the gardening club. "I want it to be something that they're going to have fun doing and not going to have to think about school because I know school can be stressful," she said.

Babe's Field and the Blackberries Babe's field got its name from the fairly evil mule we had for a year or so back in the 2000's. We got her because K had always been fascinated by mules and lonely George needed a buddy with a bit more personality than the tractor he had grown fond of.

Behind The Pots With Jack Yes, literally behind the pots. Staining the planters and myself in parts. One day I won't have to keep lifting these. Well, Dear Reader, we're having a short dry, warm spell so I had to tackle these massive planters. I have the area ready for both, they just needed some protection.

Weeding out the brassicas We planted out our cauliflowers and broccoli plants a few weeks back now, but the plants require a little maintenance throughout their growing period. A couple of weeks ago, some weeds had started growing around the base of the plants, so we carefully removed these with an onion hoe.

Safely stored away A bit of a panic today when I saw that temperatures might go down to 3C tonight and tomorrow night. Whilst I had started to move some of my tender plants under cover a few weeks ago the job was far from complete.

A year in the life of a Sweet pea grower - Johnsons Sweet Peas The next part to consider are the descriptions of flower colour. Now of course there are single colours… The edge… The flakes… And the bicolours… Now if you can get your head round these prepare to have it blown off! Did you know about shifters?

A pumpkin's story Punk lives with his friends on the Gentlewoman's farm. it has been a warm and rainy summer, and he has had a chance to get to know all who live and visit. he has met little River, and looks forward to the day when Trenton comes to take him to his house.

Copperhead Snake Bites Person Gardening in Rockville Gardening can be relaxing, but one Montgomery County resident got a shocking surprise after a venomous snake slithered into the yard. Montgomery County fire officials say the Rockville resident was busy gardening when a copperhead snake delivered its potentially dangerous bite Saturday afternoon.

Sowing the Seeds of Tomorrow When my godson was three his favourite foods were apples and peas: a predilection that I naively assumed was the norm for small children.

Fall Nature Study: Saving Seeds Each spring, my children and I start seeds for nature study. Eventually, we transplant them to the garden, care for the plants and harvest the fruit. A few years ago, we decided to allow the process to come full circle by learning how to save the seeds as well.

Sunday Homestead Update This always happens in the fall - I am so busy enjoying living the homestead life that I don't take time to blog about it. I guess it is a good problem to have! We have really been enjoying soaking in fall homestead life lately.

Perfect Pots Although we are keen outdoor gardeners we had often had a poor success rate with house plants, sometimes joking that rather than having green fingers we had the touch of death. This probably came from concentrating our efforts on the garden outside rather than those in the house.In recent years however, this has changed.

Tropical Gardening: Brighten fall gardening with flowering plants, trees Fall is officially here in the northern hemisphere, since the sun moved south of the equator. The autumnal equinox for us is the vernal or spring equinox for those south of the equator. As the sun moves farther from us, days are shorter and plants tend to slow their growth.

A trip to Crug Farm Nursery This delightfully means I am within easy driving distance to Crug Farm Nursery. I do not visit every time I am near much as I would love to, but when I know I am going to have space in my car then it is a must-do visit. Before I get to the nursery, a wander around the garden is a must.

A surprise harvest Most of the time, food comes in from the garden in dribs and drabs. I pick what I need for that meal and leave the rest till it's wanted. However, as I'm determined to avoid the dreaded blight this year, the largest tomato plant was divested of its fruit and transferred to the compost bin yesterday.

Do you make these September garden mistakes? But is the September garden intrinsically difficult? Or is it just too far away from the excitement of spring, early summer and the big flower shows? Then we go on holiday, and when we come back… But one of the great pluses of doing a garden tour - in blog, video or personal diary - is that it makes you focus on what's really going on now.

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