December 25, 2013

I hope all that are reading this have had a terrific Christmas! I also wish you a Happy New Year in 2014!

Before I left to go to Mom's place, it was time to give the boys their Christmas presents.

They were waiting patiently. LOL

Their gifts:

Cody waited patiently for the word from me that he could take his Rawhide candy cane...

Luke not so much! LOL

They immediately took their Rawhide to their beds.

And they really didn't care about the flying squirrel toys at all! LMAO

So, I left them with their Rawhide, happily gnawing away, and went to Mom's house. We had a wonderful day. Went out for lunch and opened presents later.

When I got home, Cody had devoured his Rawhide and Luke was on the deck with the 4" of his that was left. (He doesn't have the steel jaws that Cody has, it takes him longer LOL). So next time I come out to the kitchen area... Luke is laying in Cody's bed and Cody has the remaining 4" of Rawhide. Not sure who has it now! LOL Yep, those boys have the Christmas spirit... or not! LOL

December 21, 2013

HAPPY WINTER SOLSTICE!! The day light will start being longer now!!!

Not much to report in the garden. It is, after all, Winter!

I ordered and received a heated bird bath and set it up a few days ago. Now, I am ready for Winter. LOL Not that I really want it to freeze again but I would like to see if this thing is going to work or not.

When I looked out this morning, there was a Flicker grabbing some breakfast. Unfortunately, when I made a noise, it flew off and an opportunistic Starling took its place.

Next time I looked outside, I saw this Squirrel getting some oiled sunflower seeds and doing its tummy crunches at the same time!

Short squirrel movie:

Very cute Labrador holiday towel set that Mom gave me. Love it!


And, some leather goods that my cousin Randy made and sent to me. I knew he was going to send me one or two things, but he sent a whole box full! What a sweetheart.

So many things! A "biker" wallet, small purse, checkbook cover, a few coin purses, 2 belts, a belly bag, drawstring pouch! All kinds of neat stuff.

December 15, 2013

Now that Luke has injured his hind leg, same injury that Cody has but the opposite hind leg, he is having serious trouble getting around on my unrugged floor areas as well as on the deck. Poor babe, he tore his ACL Friday. Vet said that frequently when they take off running after a squirrel, squirrel runs and then makes a quick change of direction... unfortunately the dog also tries to make that quick change of direction and ends up tearing that ligament. My boy didn't realize he is a senior nowadays not a puppy. :( He is very subdued today.

Anyway, watching him try to get traction on my floors so he could get up or move around was painful... he would just "splat" down on the floor and then not move again for an hour or so until the pain subsided... so I ventured out first thing this morning and got some rugs, with non-slip backing, to put down on the floors so he can get around when he feels up to moving around. Since the time I took the pictures, I moved a couple of the rugs around so that they can get to traction within a step... or a "gimp".

And, I put an outdoor mat by the doggie door so he can get traction in and out. And put a longer mat by their ramp to the yard. I think I will get a couple more long ones for the deck. That wood gets slick in the rain.

I was going to replace, or was thinking of replacing the indoor/outdoor carpet that I had put in the dining room for Cody... so I will actually do that this coming Spring and extend it to include where the "runners" are that I had to get. Then, I'll put the old stuff outside on the deck after I give the deck about 10 coats of Thompson's. LOL I don't want the deck to rot out from being damp under that carpet.

Actually the mats help both of the boys. I've seen Cody lose footing on the floors in the house since he "gimps" along with his ACL tear from rough housing with Luke a couple years ago. Boys will be boys... sigh.

So, while I was out buying rugs, I was feeling bad that my little boy was hurting, so I decided that they each needed a new toy and a nice real bone to gnaw on! LOL

Luke didn't show much interest in his new long duck, but Cody did play with his new long pig. As you can see from the toy box, they are seriously lacking in toys! LOL They both ignored the toys when I gave them the bones. And, then they argued over who should get to keep which bone. geez! LOL

December 13, 2013

I put the Cedar squirrel feeder up over by the raspberry patch so they could have peanuts without the Blue Jays and other large birds stealing them. I did see a squirrel jump down on the little "porch" and open the lid to get the nuts out and it is currently (12/15) empty! LOL

I also moved the cute Snowman feeder over to the Maple tree in the back and now it is getting emptied of its Oiled Sunflower seeds. They didn't touch it when it was hanging on the trellis with the suet. I have seen birds on it and today I saw a squirrel hanging upside down and eating from it. LOL

December 12, 2013

Newest additions to the Christmas decor! Stuffed reindeer and a pair of Cardinals from Mom. There was some concern that the boys might like the stuffed reindeer as a toy, but so far they haven't bothered him.

December 11, 2013

I wanted to see what things looked like from the skylight view

December 10, 2013

Woke up to just a dusting of snow. So far no freezing rain or drizzle.

Tried to get a good picture of the lighted Christmas jar that Mom gave me. It is living under the little Christmas tree. Unfortunately, the "night" picture didn't turn out so well.

December 6, 2013

Well, despite what the news said last night (no snow in Portland).... it was snowing quite a bit when I got up! Its so dry out, though, that itís not sticking much. The street out front looks a bit messy, though. The wind was blowing pretty steadily from the East. Very cold!

Was nice and toasty in my bedroom but, as I stumbled out to the kitchen to get coffee, it was really cold out there! When I turned on the lights I noticed it was snowing. I also noticed that the doggie door flap was open about 2Ē letting the cold air in. So I closed that up and quickly took the two attached pictures outside. Got some coffee to put in the microwave, still feeling some breeze, turned to go to the microwave and noted that the door from the garage to the house was also 1/2 open. No wonder it was so toasty in the front of the house... the thermostat for the house is in the kitchen and it was COLD in there so the heat was staying on! ha ha

The snow was pretty dry, the ground is dry, and the wind is breezing and gusting so the snow wasn't really sticking much.

But as daylight came, it warmed a little and the flakes got bigger, it appeared to be a little more serious about sticking.

The boys were diggin' it! (Once daylight came!) LOL

Looked out front and discovered I have a new garbage can! LOL I did bring it up to the house so it wouldn't cause a problem with people driving in case the wind moved it out into the street.

Around 9am, I checked out back again. I had heard the birds chirping away, but couldn't see them earlier. The Starlings have landed! LOL The smaller birds are out too, but they are all pecking around on the ground. I had dropped a bunch of seed when I was filling a feeder yesterday, so, no doubt they have pretty much cleaned that up for me by now! (Later the Starlings moved up to the suet feeders but the smaller birds stayed on the ground).

I don't think that the hummingbird is going to be around today, so I put his feeder to where it is convenient for me to bring it back in when it freezes! But, he might show up, who knows. (Note: the hummingbird(s) show up almost immediately when I put their feeder out!)

After I got home from lunch, I decided to go out and see how frozen the birdbaths were... they were solid and I broke one of them... but thatís a different story. sigh.

As I opened the back door to the garage, I was totally shocked to see footprints by the backdoor!! Someone or something had been snooping around!!

December 5, 2013

Before I took off to have lunch with Mom and run my many errands, I decided I better check on the birdbaths since it was in the 20's overnight. They were both frozen solid and boiling water didn't even do much to melt them. This one bath even had an icicle on it!

So, when I got home, I was refilling the suet boxes since the Starlings devoured all my peanut butter suet I made. I found some that was on sale for .99 and that is what those Starlings are going to get for the next few feedings! LOL Greedy buggars!

That birdbath had another icicle under it when I looked at it. So, I have broken the ice out of both birdbaths, with a hammer, took the ice out and put in fresh water but I'm sure it will be frozen by morning.

While I was filling the suets and one bird feeder, I noticed this beautiful Hummingbird. He flew around my head for one lap and then sat on the branches of the "tree" that is next to the Hummingbird feeder.

"How cute" I thought to myself as I watched him for a minute. He kept on looking right at me. Tried to get him to come and sit on my finger, but he declined to do so! LOL

Instead, he went to the feeder like he was going to eat and then sat back on the branch and stared at me. Kinda like... "WELL, human????" So, I walked over and well, duh, the feeder liquid was frozen solid. Go figure! LOL He was clearly letting me know that it was frozen and that I should remedy that situation immediately! LOL

He was really very pretty. Green body and black face, but when he "fluffed up" his face/neck feathers and was looking right at you... that black was a gorgeous magenta color that glinted in the sun. It really made him look a bit on the ferocious side for such a little fella! LOL I couldn't get a picture of his face fluffed up to show the pink, but in the picture on the right you can see a little magenta.

Anyway, I thawed out some of the solution under hot tap water and put it back out. The little bird would sit on the branches like he was guarding it! Was very cute! And, occasionally, it would go take a drink and then take up his guarding position again. When he finally left, I brought the feeder inside so it can finish thawing in the house and I will put it out in the morning in case the hummingbird comes back for breakfast! LOL

So, I was sitting at the computer desk and happened to look up to see the Christmas Frog that Sherry gave me was still sitting on the upper shelf of my desk! It has now joined the other decor in the living room.

Amazingly, (yes I am near the end of this story day, LOL) a new young deer has come to join Frosty and the other deer. It's a miracle!!

December 4, 2013

I was so excited that the Snowman and Scarecrow birdfeeders had arrived! So, first I filled the Snowman feeder with oil sunflower seeds. (That is what is supposed to go in them).

What a mess! LOL

I decided NOT to fill the Scarecrow feeder.

I hung the Snowman up on the trellis. I haven't seen any birds come to eat from it though... yet.

December 2, 2013

Well, I did get a tree after all. But it is just a 4' tree. I think it is pretty and I decorated it with some of my antique balls. And, I got some little trees to decorate the antique Bavarian village. Now the carolers are singing around the tree! LOL

November 30, 2013

This will be it,unless I get a tree, for the inside decor.

Close up of whats on the fireplace mantel:

And, the front of the mantel:

And, lastly, the lighting:

November 28 and 29, 2013

Have you ever been standing around or working outside then suddenly feel like you're being watched? Well, that is what happened to me this afternoon when I was working in the "bird garden".(I don't know what is going on with that first picture, but it doesn't seem to want to cooperate).


Not really sure what they are because I couldn't get a good look, but I think they are the Starlings that have been gobbling up all the suet and bird seed. After I took their pictures, they started chattering away like crazy!

Pretty American Robin stopped in for a drink of water with some friends. They didn't stay to eat though, just drank and left.

On the 28th, I got the deer and Frosty into the garden and only had enough lights to light up one branch of the birdhouse tree. Also, put some lights on the dog house.

So, when I got home this afternoon, I put more lights on the tree, added a Reindeer to the boys house and put icicles on the back deck! Those icicles blink one section at a time so it wasn't easy getting a picture of it all lit at once!

November 26, 2013

Since it was nice out this afternoon, I decided to go ahead and put the deer and snowman out in the garden. While I was puttering around with that, the birds were having a meeting on the overhead wire.

So, I got the three light-up decor out and finally got them where I could see them from the doorway (as opposed to going out to the cold night air! LOL)

As soon as I went back in the house, this female Downey Woodpecker swooped in to get a bite or two of suet.

And, then here came the Starlings to fight over the suet. There were tons of them out there. I took a movie, actually 2 movies, but I can't get the video program to work, so you have been spared having to watch it! LOL

And, then it finally got dark out so I could see my garden decor. Looks nice. But I had to cut down some of the dead/sleeping flowers in the front so I could see them! LOL

November 21, 2013

And, just a few days later, we had the first good frost/freeze! My tall mums still looked great, but I was afraid that the frost would kill it. NOTE: 11/25/13,didn't kill it yet!


November 19, 2013

The branch pile is finally going down. The tall mum is looking spectacular!

November 12, 2013

I wanted to show you these neat candies Mom got me as part of my birthday present. Very cute Mint-Fudge frogs! Pretty tasty, too! LOL

November 11, 2013

When I looked outside this afternoon, I saw a brown squirrel dining on the peanut butter suet that I had put out this morning. It was having a wonderful time and really chowing down! When it noticed me taking a movie of it, it decided to try to get up to safety on top of the Shepards Hook. In doing so, the suet cage opened, the squirrel almost fell off, the suet dropped to the ground and, apparently, rolled a bit. Once on top of the Hook, it stared at me for a bit and then went down the pole, found something to eat and scampered away. I stopped recording at that point but did get a shot of the pretty, dainty, gray squirrel that was eating nearby.
Well, after I got her picture, I started to leave and then I saw some movement and thought the original squirrel had come back to find the suet. When I got a better look, there were 3 other squirrels with their eye on that suet on the ground and the big brown squirrel came running in and scared the little gray squirrels away... It happened so fast, I did not get that part on film, unfortunately.
So, I came in and eventually downloaded my movie(s) but the program I use wanted to shorten my wonderful movie and it would cut out the part where the squirrel was hanging on for dear life, trying to grasp the hook, while the suet was falling to the ground. Grrrrrrr
SO, I painstakingly went frame by frame and secluded 46 sections that would make a nice movie... but it still wanted to shorten it. Exasperated, I ended up only using like 13 of the frames and making those into the movie... but my real movie is much more funny! LOL
So, now that you know the whole story and without further ado... turn up your speakers and watch the very short movie:

November 10, 2013


Well, remember the Arborvitae? Okay, here's the picture again:


Well, I did decide to go ahead and cut the front one since it is the one closest to the drop lines to the neighbors house. The homeowner (its a rental) was concerned about the height of my bushes and that they might fall over into his yard and hurt something.

He actually had offered (for a fee) that he and his yard guy would cut them back and haul everything away, but yesterday when he looked closer, they worked in his yard and left! LMAO They are pretty darned tall and wide.

So, since it was nice and sunny out, I decided to see what I could do since that first bush, IF it fell over from ice or snow would likely take out his drop line to the house.

SO, off I went with my ladder, big loppers, medium loppers, and branch saw. Got the front half of the bushes trimmed up.

Attached the guide rope and used the branch saw (no, it is not electric or gas powered... it is person powered! LOL)

Everything was going well and using my logging knowledge skills (LMAO)... and the guide rope, managed to get all the branches down... until I came to this one. It was such a tight fit in there and the only place I could even get to that branch was right underneath it. That's not the best place to be! LOL

But, that is where I found myself, tied the guide rope on, made my wedge cut and then worked on the back cut. Before it started to fall, I got out of there and then pulled on the guide rope until it snapped and fell right where I had been. (That was where it was supposed to go)!
Lopped off the rest of the branches and was finally done with ONE bush! Egads, they are huge!

The debris pile looks amazingly small in this photo. But, I can assure you, it is big! Now I have to figure out how to get rid of it.

Looking from the street:

Got done with 20 minutes to spare before the sun went down. All in all a tiring day. I did hurt two fingers, but they are regaining feeling so I'm sure they will be okay. I'm sure that, because I am now, I will be feeling this work tomorrow. It is now time for a Whiskey shot and a beer back. It is also time for a nice hot shower to get whatever bugs I inherited, off me! LOL

Since it was nice, but cold, out this morning I thought a few pictures might be in order.

The Japanese Maple in the backyard is changing color and looking pretty!

Mums are still looking very pretty!

I moved the Beans, Peas, and Cucumber plants back outside. The Cuke, in particular, didn't seem to really like it in the greenhouse. Since the temps are not supposed to get down to freezing for awhile, I thought they might enjoy the great outdoors!

I might try to work on these today. They are making the neighbor nervous although I think if they fell over they would barely touch anything except the double fence (one is chain link and one is wood). Not sure I'm really up to that challenge but, might give it the old college try.


Last, but not least, the Birthday Frog has been moved to the greenhouse with the others.

November 6, 2013

Found this guy just hanging around when I got home. LOL

October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween

I wandered around a bit to see what was going on in the gardens at this late date.

The Cherry Bushes are changing to red and starting to drop their leaves

Rhubarb is growing well

Think the Grapes are going night-night for the year

Little Wallflower had a blossom

Wildflowers decided it was time to bloom

The volunteer yellow Viola's are still going strong

The tall Mum, as said earlier, is starting to bloom. I can't say it's my favorite, but it's pretty in its own right (on the left). But the shorter Mum is spectacular still and has been most of the season.

And, lastly, this Flicker was working very hard at getting the Thistle out of the Thistle feeder.

The Jack O Lanterns are compliments of Halloween Clipart

October 30, 2013

I arrived at work before the sun had come up, but when it did it was a beauty!
I had to move to the next cubicle to get a good picture and all of Mt Hood in the picture. I wish I had the view below in MY window!

October 25, 2013

What a wonderful day! I was being treated to a Surf N Turf dinner!

The boys and I went over to David's house and planned on overnight'ing there. So, I got comfy in my winter jammies and awaited dinner.

We visited for a bit and waited for the Lobster to arrive. They were flying in, live, from Boston. I believe the Lobster started out in Maine.

Dinner Arrived!

Steaks to go with the lobsters.

It was still early, so we watched a couple movies (World War Z & Oblivion) before dinner was started. Both pretty good movies. Then, David started dinner.

First up was the clam chowder that arrived with the lobsters. Really good chowder!

Next, some shrimp and cocktail sauce, which also arrived with the lobsters. They were huge and very tasty! The sauce was some of the best I've ever had.

Hello Dinner! LOL Lobsters were pretty big!

Surf-n-Turf time.... Yummy! Steak was perfect and the lobster was really good. Nice glass of Champagne was a perfect compliment for it all.

Lobsters - before and after

Great meal, movies and my best friend! It just doesn't get better than that. Thank you!

October 19, 2013

Well, today was the day to trim the mature bushes. I really needed to cut the tops back about 3 - 5' depending on the bush. When it hit 55 degrees, I ventured outside and viewed my fare for the day.

So I got my Fiskars Titanium loppers, Fiskars hand pruner's, Fiskars tree saw and the electric trimmer and got to work. The bushes had gotten so wide that I couldn't reach the tall branches in the back that are on my neighbors side. So I decided that I would trim the front of the bushes back further so I might be able to get the ladder close enough that I could actually get to those back branches. Now, mind you, my neighbors don't mind the overgrown bushes, but it looks really weird from my side if it is all trim and has these tall branches out the back side.

So anyway, I started trimming and pulling stuff out, piling it up.

Two hours later:

So, I kept on trimming and pulling and cutting and piling. I discovered that two of the plants had a lot of dead, diseased wood in the "trunks"... there were good parts too... but I cut them WAY back. One plant didn't even have anything growing from it!

Four and a half hours later, this is what the bushes looked like:


And this is what my pile looked like:

Lord have mercy!

I wonder how long, at one barrel of debris per week, it will take me to get rid of that mess! LMAO

Sad part is.... I still have this part to trim. I am only going to trim and not going to look at the "trunks"! LOL


And, this is the Hunter's Moon from the 18th. Doesn't look any different than the regular moon the night before. But the news said it is the Hunter's Moon.

I am soooooooo tired. I am taking tomorrow off. LOL

October 18, 2013

Bounded out of bed at 0600 hours, poured a cup of coffee... and then another... and then I started the laundry. I noted that it wasn't even 50 degrees outside so I was actually in no rush to get out there! LOL

But, when it got to 52 degrees, I wandered out to see what needed to be done.


I also checked my plants and they were all dew laden and very cold still. Mandy Mandeville was not looking well at all.

So, I got to work and finished up with the little garden shed. It's looking much nicer now. I put all the chemical stuff back in it until I decide to go to the Hazardous Materials center to dump it off. Best part is that even with all the big stuff back in, I can easily reach anything I might need on shelves or on the pegboard, etc! woo hoo!

After lunch, I went out to fill the yard trash barrel with cuttings from a couple days ago.

But, instead, I decided to cut back the shrubs and cut down all those nasty blackberry vines that were hanging down from the bushes like painful tree snakes.

So, this pile will have to wait till next week.

So, while I was taking pictures of what I did and/or didn't do, these cute little birds came to dine. They weren't at all worried about me being about 3' from where they were eating. They were so small I could have fit two of them in the palm of my hand! Aren't they adorable? LOL

My last major outdoor event for today was to move plants into the greenhouse. I have a light hooked up for warmth but I need to find my low watt bulbs for it. Grrrr. So, I moved the veggies and the Portucala inside. Baron, Priscilla and the ground covers will remain outside, but I may start covering Baron and Priscilla at night with a frost cover I just got.

Mandy is going to live inside the house as of tonight. She was not looking well after being so cold at night. It looked like some of her unbloomed blossoms had frozen.

I think I better work on this mess tomorrow while its still nice out. The top really needs some cutting back.

And, lastly, this was the full moon last night.

October 17,2013

Started out the day by running up to the farm to do a couple things. It was breaking fog 1/2 of the way and fog the other 1/2....

But, I was pretty sure that once I started the ascent to the farm, it would be clear....

Yeah, that's what I'm talkin' about! Beautiful!

So, I did all the stuff that I went out there to do and headed back to town and to Costco. Gathered up the things I went to get there and got the boys a snack, too.

That should keep them in rawhide for awhile! LOL

Made one more stop on the way home for birdseed. Got home, unloaded everything, had a bite to eat and decided to get started on the Garden Shed.

Pulled the three biggest things out so I could get in and work

Doesn't look so bad on this side

Or this side

Good Lord, how did I get all that crap in there?? There's still more in there, too!

While I was hauling stuff out of the tiny garden shed, I noticed this Woodpecker that came to dine.

Well, I have one hell of a mess on the cement patio, but the inside of the shed is very nice now. LOL I got the pegboard up and the shelves up. Swept it all out (rodents of whatever kind had opened several bags of this and that. I'm sure they enjoyed all my grass seed that was all over the floor, but the Triazanon and that sort of thing, also all over the ground, probably gave them indigestion. Discovered that I have enough Moss Out in liquid and dry form to blanket the entire neighborhood! Sigh.

Before I gave up for the night, I did get stuff on the shelves and the pegboard.
But, that is enough for today. I will finish that mess up tomorrow before I move on to the rest of my list.

October 16,2013

It has been such a beautiful time outside this month. Not a normal October for here, but then, again, September was unusually stormy, wet and nasty. Anyway, had a few things to do outside and I happened to look at the potted veggie garden.

I noted that the bean plants have green beans on them, the pea plants have peas on them, and the cucumber plants have cucumbers growing but I'm not sure they will actually make it to being big enough to eat! LOL

The brick red mum is still blooming like crazy, but, although it is showing signs it is going to bloom... the tall one next to it has not yet bloomed.

October 15, 2013

Not as crisp as the picture of the moon at the farm, but still pretty darned nice!

October 11, 2013

I spent a good deal of this week working in the garage. The garage was out of control and I couldn't find anything ever... so.... I got it much better organized now. Of course most people looking at this had never seen my garage to begin with and I didn't take "before" pictures... so you will just have to take my word for it that it is MUCH better than it was! Some stuff will be moved again once I get the pegboard up in the garden shed and then the boards won't be so crowded looking.

And, when I get rid of this stuff (some to the farm for use, some to the garbage and some to donation center) I will once again be able to get my car into the garage and find stuff when I look for it! I found tons of stuff that I haven't seen for years and also have noted that I had multiple of many things because I couldn't find the first one and so I bought more!

October 6, 2013

That's it.... I'm done.... I'm not wasting one more second on that greenhouse project. Already wasted the better part of 3 days doing and re-doing. Now it is fixed in the way I was originally going to do it. I'm doing no more.

This morning it was colder INSIDE the greenhouse than it was outside the greenhouse! So, I turned those insulation panels around again! LOL Right, wrong or indifferent... this is how it is going to be. PERIOD! LOL

Frogs and toadstools are on shelves and secured as much as can be. Pots, dirt and misc on the floor. Kitty cat thermometer is up front where I can see it! Plenty of room remains for anything that might need to go in when frost time hits.

Veggies on the left and banana is living on the right side.

Portucala back out on the deck till frost time, too.

October 5, 2013

So, after the morning trip to the farm, the boys and I came home and I started hauling everything out of the greenhouse and dismantling the work I did yesterday on it. It was just as cold inside the greenhouse this morning as it was outside the greenhouse. sigh

So, as I said, I hauled everything out. Yes, all the stuff you see in the pictures below, except Baron von Banana, was in the greenhouse. LOL

Dismantled the covering and insulation panels that I put in yesterday. Turned the greenhouse sideways (yes, again). Put the thermal pool cover UNDER the original covering and turned the insulation panels around, gave it a nice indoor/outdoor carpet floor and put the door back on.

Unfortunately, the temperature inside is falling at the same rate as the outdoor temperature. So, tomorrow it will become, basically, a storage shed for the Winter. I will probably try putting a light bulb in there tomorrow and see how that works. Maybe it will at least stop the veggie plants from freezing. I don't know.

So, the boys and I bid you a good night!

Cody inside the house Luke on the outside looking in!

October 4, 2013

Stumbled out of bed and out to the kitchen to make coffee and feed the mutts. When I looked out the glass door, I saw these cuties perched on the deck railing. I thought to myself, how cute is that?! Then, it occurred to me that they were probably letting me know that their feeders were empty as were all the suet feeders! LOL

Well, it was actually pretty cold and fog was not seeming to lift very quickly. Normally, you can see Rocky Butte out my back door. So the birds were going to have to wait. Besides, I hadn't had my coffee yet! LOL

So, I ran a couple errands while it was cold out and then came back to tackle my to do list. First up was the securing of thermal swimming pool cover over the greenhouse to help it stay warm for the veggies trying to grow inside.

One side and the front roll up for ventilation purposes when necessary. DONE!

Then I mowed the lawn. DONE!

Fixed the fence. DONE!

Stuffed half of my debris pile into the barrel for next Wednesday's pick up. DONE!

After those things were done, I was looking at the garden, sipping more coffee, and decided that, although unplanned for today, I would start trimming things back. Doesn't sound all that hard but it was really starting to be a bother for my back. But I got most of it done.

Garden on the right side, before and after

And, the left side, before and after

While I was clipping and cutting and chopping, I discovered that the California Lilac had one bloom on it and the Sedum Garnet Brocade was blooming finally!

Additionally, the Fuchsia and the Sylvatica Blue that Mom gave me have sprung back to life

This little Fuchsia managed to have some color on it even though it was overshadowed by the huge unblossomed Mum and the huge orange Dahlia. The other little flower I know I planted there, but I don't know the name of it and can't find the tag that came with it. But, I was happy to see it bloomed! LOL

So, I picked up all the cuttings and put them on the pile for next week.


Last thing I had planned for today was to install the peg board in the garage and put stuff up on it so I can see what the heck I actually have. But, I ran out of steam, the sun was starting to set, it was cooling off quickly, and I lacked any further interest of completing that task. LOL

But, it will go here when I get to it! LMAO NOT done!

So I am done and tired... definitely need to get cleaned up! I do believe that the Bud Light is now illuminated. Tomorrow.. the boys and I will travel out to the farm and see what we need to do out there while the weather is nice.

Thanks for sharing my day with me! :)

October 3, 2013

I found today that since I wasn't working (Govt shutdown) that I might just as well do a few things around the house. It was cool outside (actually cold this morning) but late this afternoon the clouds finally broke so I did some things.
I got some flexible foam insulation slabs and finally got those tucked into the bottom half of the greenhouse since it is not holding any heat in it. I will cover the top with thermal plastic down to where the insulation is. Hopefully that will help since I have some veggies growing in there!

See the little cucumbers that have started growing?

After that, when the clouds broke, I decided to try out the "roll out rubber mulch" that I had purchased. It's pretty neat stuff and will work very well where I am putting it, but I don't know if I would put it in a "high traffic" area. I will see how it does and report back! I need to get one more roll, maybe two. They are 6' x 2'. I think one more will do it for the area on the two sides of the hot tub.

I also tied up the tall mum, again, and used a tall tomato cage and twine. Made it pretty skinny looking though! LOL The red one is also propped up on 3 sides with a couple pieces of fence. But, it was getting cold out so I decided to quit for the day.

Baron von Banana is really digging this cold weather. The leaves it is putting out now are huge! I need to figure out where I am going to plant it in the ground and get it planted. It's going to outgrow that pot in no time and it has two baby plants growing also.

And this is the remnant of the Butterfly Bush after I cut its branches off yesterday or the day before.

September 30, 2013

Still mostly raining out, wind is almost gone though. A few gusty breezes on occasion. Sun even came out for a short while.

One of the earliest sights this morning was this bird way up in the top of the fir tree, calling out to its friends.... but there were no other birds like that around. It was raining pretty good, so I really couldn't tell for sure what it was. But, I know it was not that Cooper's Hawk that visited the other day.

This clever little squirrel was out early trying to get to the last of the Peanut Butter suet that was out.

The little bird scared the squirrel away! LOL

So,the squirrel eventually made its way to the circular bird feeder that has all oil sunflower seeds in it and sat inside the circle, eating, for about 20 minutes. The wind would gust, the feeder would rock and the squirrel just kept on eating!

So, the next time I looked out, there was a Northern Flicker going after the last of the PB suet... so I took a movie of it - a little Jazz to go with it! Yeah, I'm a little bored and not in the mood for housekeeping duties. LOL
BUT, taking the movie has all but depleted my batteries in the camera... and I don't have any more that I can find... so I guess I will clean house after all. I might melt if I go out in the rain!

September 28, 2013

The rain started pretty close to when they said it would, wind also.

Later the same day... got really dark out! LOL

Looking out the front door.

I put my newest Halloween decoration up in the house... thought the dogs might bark or growl at it, but they could have cared less she was there. Spoil sports. LOL She will hang in a tree out front when the time gets nearer.

I saw this pretty bird in the bird garden a few days ago. It sat and let me take its picture and then it flew off again.

Because of it's speckling I thought it might be some kind of Flicker or of the Flicker family since I see many of those around, but I couldn't find any bird pictures that really looked like this particular bird. I have learned from my cousin that it is actually a Cooper's hawk and that they feed on smaller birds who visit bird feeder stations. sigh. I realize they are only doing what comes natural, but I wish they would do it elsewhere! They are, according to the map, common pretty much everywhere.

So, after I got that news from Gary, I also looked it up online at the Cornell University site and found a picture of the same bird and it said the same thing as Gary had told me. (Not that I doubted what he told me, just wanted to learn more of their habitat, habits, etc).
One good thing I learned on the Cornell site is that if have one taking up residency in your backyard, you should take down bird feeders for a few days and the Hawk will go away since you are no longer providing an easy smorgasbord for them.
The site also said they prefer to eat European Starlings, Mourning Doves and Rock Pigeons. But a tasty American Robin, various Blue Jays, Northern Flickers, quail, pheasants, grouse, and chickens are on their menu, too. For a change of pace they also enjoy raiding nests and also will eat chipmunks, hares, mice, squirrels, and bats. It further said that they squeeze the life out of their prey and have been known to drowned them to kill them.

And, so ends our bird lesson for today! :)

Cornell University, All About Birds

September 21, 2013

Okay, I guess I'm not done posting pictures yet! LOL

I noticed when I was out on the deck that the bigger cucumber plant has blossoms on it, and, as well, the bean plant is sporting some new blossoms. The Pea plants don't have blossoms yet. I hope they will produce some veggies before it gets too cold. I need to shift things around on the floor of the greenhouse I think so I can move the veggies in there when needed.

Beans Cuke

I shifted the Portucala closer together and moved Mandy Mandevilla plant next to them. I gave her her own small Shepherd's hook to wind around on and after the picture was taken, I put a Shepherd's hook in one of the Portucala planters so Mandy can wind over to that too.

Portucala Mandy

Hmmm... more clouds coming in. Guess I will go clean the house now! LOL

Moon was looking pretty tonight

And as I said earlier, I moved all the color changing lights to the deck. One doesn't work but these ones did.

September 19, 2013

When I woke up this morning, it was 53 degrees on the back deck and a bit dismal looking outside. But, I knew the sun would be out eventually for this, our last day of sun for awhile (according to the weather guys on the news). So, when it heated up to 65 degrees, I got started.

Moved stuff out of the greenhouse to get it out of my way and moved in the empty pots, to get them out of my way.

Went around the gardens and gathered up the Frog and other garden ornaments. They are now residing in the greenhouse. The Sheriff frog and his two Deputies are guarding the front door! LOL

Toadstools/Mushrooms got a shelf too.

Birdie's Bed and Breakfast is closed for the Fall/Winter for housing repairs and all the Twirly Things are off the Twirly Tree.

Looks pretty vacant now! LOL

While I was out gathering up the garden ornaments, lights, twirlies and birdhouses, I was going to do some pruning on the biggest Mums. That one is 3' tall and has not had one flower on it. The one next to it has been a prolific flowering concern all summer. So, I went to inspect them and lo and behold, there are FINALLY flower buds forming/formed on the tall one and the shorter one has a ton of new buds... so, they get to live for a bit longer! LOL I was also going to trim the Honeysuckle bush, but it smelled so nice in the crisp morning that I just couldn't bring myself to do it!

Also while I was out there gathering up frogs... I discovered that the cucumber plant that I thought had shriveled up and died... has come back to life and has a blossom on it! LOL I wonder if it will make a cuke before Winter!

Now all the color changing lights are stuck in planters on the back deck. Baron Von Banana, Echinopsis, and the Portucala are still on the deck, but I will have to move Echinopsis into the house before freezing weather comes. Priscilla Pineapple is already in the house (she's a houseplant and, no, can't eat the pineapple that is growing)!

So there you have it. Probably won't hear much else out of me about this house/yard until Spring. Have an awesome Autumn and a wonderful Winter!

September 14, 2013

Overall, it was a cool and cloudy, but pleasant day in the neighborhood. Birds were happily eating on my Cosmos plant. They were really working it over, too! LOL

The little birds are kinda Army green and dark gray. I didn't look it up to see what they were though. I guess they are Finches.

Now, turn up your speakers! There is music! LOL. Don't know what happened but the movie doesn't show them all flying away like it did in my original... but they did and there were quite a few of them!

I moved the veggies and the Portucala back up onto the deck today, too.

September 13, 2013

Leaves are starting to change color and fall from the trees... so Fall and Winter are right around the corner. Hopefully that means the hot weather will also go away... but stay dry! LOL I don't ask for much.

So while it was cool and cloudy out, I decided to clean up that mess in the bird garden. I got tired of the Sunflowers (they were dying off), so I cut them down a few days ago. Well, then I got tired of seeing all the cornstalks with birdseed tassels. So I cut the tassels that still had birdseed on them off of the stalks and put those in one of the seedcatchers for the birds to eat them from there. Then I pulled out and cut down the cornstalks. What a job that was for such a small area!

The whole time I was out there destroying the bird seed stalks, there was several crows and some other bird just squawking like crazy at me!

So, I picked up that mess I made and moved it out. That is enough to fill the yard trash barrel next week (it's already full for this week's pickup)

I moved the veggie containers out of the way so I could get the lawnmower to the bird garden area. They're growing amazingly well!

Then I mowed/mulched the bird garden. Still needs some weed eating, but this looks nice for now! LOL

Gave the grapes a cut a couple days ago when I was picking grape clusters.

So, I worked on the back today while I was getting another big bowl of grape clusters. Looking pretty sad at this time of the year. :(

The vines went into the almost full yard trash barrel and I did manage to shove them all in it, that's why the wheelbarrow is still full of cornstalks. LOL

Plus I still have the Butterfly Bush cuttings to get rid of from last week.

Still need to put down weed fabric and put mulch back here. But, I didn't get that done today.

Meant to get this Honeysuckle under control, too.I didn't get that done, either.

I did notice that one of the Cherry bushes is making a bush now!

The Ornamental Peppers and Portucala are still looking good. I guess they like that hot weather! lol

I moved all the small cacti into the house where they used to be. I decided not to use the greenhouse since it isn't made to keep things warm in the Winter if it gets really cold. (yes, it was a cheapo one). Still need to figure out where the big plants are going to live in the house. Cornelius Cornplant, Echinopsis, Optunia, Baron Von Banana, and Priscilla Pineapple will be moved when I figure out where they are going to go.

The boys got some rawhide bones to amuse them and keep them out of my way while I was working. LOL

And, I did some other trimning and pulling of weeds in the gardens. That Sweet Potato vine I bought had gone crazy and cut it WAY back. From what I've read, you can't kill it and the broken or cut vines will start growing/rooting if you leave the pieces around. The other SP vine didn't get as huge as the green one. But, many things are past their prime and need to be cut back now. Some things will get moved to other parts of the garden but I'm not sure when that will happen... depends on the weather.

Bottom line... whatever I don't get accomplished before the Wet Season sets in... it will still be there when the Dry Season starts in late Spring and I'll do it then. No worries! LOL

September 4 - September 8, 2013

Hmmm... got a little behind in my serial blogging efforts. LOL
So, I'm cramming the last few days together, in reverse order date, of course.
September 8, Later that same day:

Dog house is now properly displaying the boys names and ready for a coat of water repellant. :) Got the C up there in place and painted Luke's name with "metallic" paint so it would show up better. I have some leftover linoleum that I'm going to put down on their front porch.

Today, September 8, was my yard trash cleanup and pruning day.

I had noticed yesterday that part of the Butterfly bush had snapped off. Not sure what happened. But I took off about 1/2 of the two bushes, mostly to get them out of my way. I'll do the rest later, it's time to cut it back anyhow. Not many flowers are left on it.

So, I now have a good start on the clippings to get rid of next week

I trimmed the grape vines as I was cutting grape clusters off. I filled another big bowl with grapes and those will also get washed and frozen for use later.

There are still plenty hanging on the vines!

While I was in a trimming mood, I also trimmed back the Artichoke plant. Silly thing has a bunch of new leaves growing. I think it's supposed to be going to sleep, not growing, at this time of the year! LOL

So, I stuffed these two piles of clippings and two smaller piles of clippings into the big barrel for Wednesday's pickup. Was totally full to the top but I got a lot more in there than I thought I would be able to. Next week will be the Butterfly Bush and Artichoke clippings in the barrel.

After that was all done, I planted the "September Charm"Anemone's that my pal Debbie gave me yesterday. They should perk up in a couple days. The plant with the brown on it is a Dahlia that I don't think is going to make it... but I left it there since it's not hurting anything and planted the Anemone behind it.

Internet photo

Yesterday, September 7, I decided to take all the "babies" off of Echinopsis. Easy enough to do and the research I did beforehand proved no definitive method of doing it, so I just pulled them off and put them in their own dish. I also took out the 3 babies from last year and put them in with the new ones. I hope they all grow! So, Echinopsis only has one tiny baby left on her and I doubt any of the remaining fuzzy things will produce flowers this year.

And, I decided after taking care of Echinopsis that I would finally put Cody and Luke's names on their house. As you can see, there was a problem. LOL The blue "C" is now drying from having to be glued back together. The top broke when I was drilling the hole to put it up.

First bowl of Concord Grapes from my Grape vine. They are now (September 5) washed, dried, and frozen.

I finally picked my lone radish on September 5. It will go in my salad on the 8th.

September 5,Cody and Luke were barking like crazy in the house (I forgot I had them locked inside, tee hee). So, I went to see what their problem was and saw this visitor lurking amongst the flowers, staring at the deck (probably because of the barking). It turned and started to saunter over to the "Bird Garden" so I let the dogs out. LOL The dogs can't get into the garden and I think that cat knows it because it didn't move any faster, but it did leave the area.

Yeah, I know, it's not my backyard, but it was a slow news day! LOL This is the view from my office window on September 4. Pretty dreary out that day.

September 1, 2013

Labor Day, indeed it was! LOL I will be observing the holiday on Monday like everyone else though... I will be doing NOTHING!

This would be my target area for most of the day. Empty out the greenhouse, move it and put everything back, plus more stuff.

This one got me on the nose when I moved it out.

I got Echinopsis onto a small furniture mover and tied some twine to it to pull it around. It was working pretty good, much better than the plant stand rollers that I have tried. She is just too heavy in that pot and needs better support than those cutsie rollered things can give. The furniture mover will hold 60 lbs and it was doing very well.

So I decided since I had half of the deck now pressure washed, that I should go ahead and put the tall plants into the greenhouse with the other plants and get them out of my way. Unfortunately, Echinopsis shifted and fell off the "mover" depositing quite a bit of dirt onto my just cleaned deck. I got most of it up before I took the picture and got the cactus and other plants into the greenhouse.

Got the deck all pressure washed and now just had to wait for it to dry so it could be treated.

So I wandered over to my garden path and determined that it was in serious need of some cutting, as well as the area between the hot tub and the garden.

I needed a few things from Home Depot so I could finish my projects, so I ran off and got what I needed and came back. I needed a break from working too since it was fairly hot out. Then, I got home, ate the burger I bought and got to work on the garden path and cleaning that mess up. Untangled some hoses that I was no longer using in the garden and put those away, too. A couple are going in the trash.

I decided the deck was plenty dry and I put the Olympic waterguard on it. BOY, it soaked in fast! It probably needs another coat but it will have to get by with just the one for now. Supposed to be showery off and on the rest of this week, so when I'm going to have at least 24 hours of certain dry weather, I will give it another coat. It was actually dry enough in a few hours that I could walk barefoot on it so, it took much less than 24 hours before it was useable and the boys could go out.

Grass was about 8" high down my brick path... couldn't even see the brick! So I weed-eated that, too, all the way to the Raspberry patch at the end.

Added some rubber mats to this grassy little hill. Since it gets watered when I water the garden, it, and the garden path, were growing quite well. Now it won't grow here! LOL

Then, I added a new row of rubber mats here to help discourage water from getting under the deck.

I decided the Cuke plants, Peas and Beans could live with the berries/cherries until further notice so they would get watered with everything else.

Portucala will live down here until further notice for the same reason.

I planted the Fuchsia, 2 Mums and the Heather plant in here.

And, I planted the Garnet Brocade (Sedum Stonecrop) in front of the other plants. I also planted another Dahlia that wasn't doing very well at Mom's, but I forgot to take a picture of that one. It's up with the white, orange, scarlet and red Dahlia's. Not sure if it's going to make it. We'll see.

I intended on picking the grapes today, but I ran out of steam. By the time I put things away etc my get up and go, had gotten up and left! LOL

I think I got too much heat today since I was out in it most of the day. I do try to stay hydrated when working in the heat, but I was starting to feel ill so it was time to stop. All in all, a good day though. I completed 12 out of the 16 things on my list... so I'm good with that. Tomorrow I am, as I said in the beginning, doing NOTHING! LOL

August 31, 2013

When I looked outside this morning, I noticed there were 5 small birds covering one of the homemade suet feeders and there were 5 more on the crossbars of the arch that appeared to be waiting their turn to eat. Of course, by the time I got the camera, only 4 birds were left on the suet and the door opening made one of them take flight.

A few went to the suet in the bird house tree

Then, the European Starlings swooped in and scared the little birds off the suet so they could eat.

In the afternoon when I got back home, I looked out and noticed that this squirrel was going to get his/her share of peanut butter suet too! LOL But that's why I put that one so close to the tree branches, so the squirrels could get at it easily.

August 29, 2013

Miserable weather this month has definitely curtailed my gardening efforts and my painting efforts at the farm. Humidity and heat one day and then wet and thunderstorms in the area. Makes it really hard to get things done outside!

Poor things, I hate when the flowers are starting to die off. :( Almost all of the sunflowers have now fallen over, none got seeds but the bees were sure getting a lot of pollen off them. I wish I could have gotten a picture of the one bee that I saw out there, he was covered in bright yellow pollen! He must have weighed twice his normal weight with all that on him!

The scrubby little Dahlia's that I took from Mom's house are really doing nicely once they got going! I wasn't sure that they were going to live at all.

the yellow Dahlia on the left side of the photo is now turning orange. I don't understand Dahlia's. It's been yellow since it first started blooming and now it has orange flowers on it, too. 8/30/13: NOTE: It is two separate plants, but I have no idea where the orange one came from.

This big red Dahlia is still growing strong. The red Mum behind it looks like it will be getting more blossoms. But, that one on the left got so big and tall that the branches started flopping over to the sides and has no blossoms, or hope for blossoms, on it, yet.

The orange Dahlia that cropped up in the middle of the white Dahlia and the yellow Viola is getting bigger and pushing the white Dahlia off to the side and the poor Viola is getting squished between the orange Dahlia and scarlet Dahlia, but it's still reaching for the light and peeking out! LOL

No idea what this is, but I think it's pretty! Might be a weed for all I know. It popped up behind the white, orange, scarlet and red Dahlia's and the yellow Viola.

730am: Speaking of nasty weather. This was the second time since 530am that I shut down the computer due to thunderstorms going through and around. Hopefully that will be the last one. Funny part is I was watching the news and they said the lightning was in Canby and the storm was moving north at about 10 miles per hour, so I figured it would be a few hours before it made it here. My pal, who lives south of me, called at 645am to let me know that he was hearing thunder in his area. About 8 minutes later, the thunder was crashing here and Cody was not a happy camper. Luke got on my bed, but he just laid down and took a nap, Cody, on the other hand, also on my bed, was in danger of panting himself to death. But, it has been quiet for about 20 minutes now and the Benedryl helped both boys get to sleep again, so I figured it was safe enough now to get back on the 'puter and add my last 3 pictures! LOL

Mandy continues to bloom and be pretty. I noticed that there are about 6 new buds coming on at different areas on her stem as well as the blooms that are just getting ready to open.

Banana plant has been steadily growing. I didn't really expect it to grow this fast. No later than next Spring I will probably have to get it into the ground.

Hopefully, in a couple days when it's supposed to be nicer, I will get the boys names up on the front of their dog house.

August 22, 2013

Just another day in Paradise! LOL
Morning started out pretty well, was cool enough to get out and do some cutting and trimming. Didn't get the weed-eating done though. Got hot, muggy and somewhat dark cloudy out, and it was lunchtime, so I came in!

First thing I noticed when I went out is that the Concord Grapes are turning purple. My first crop! YAY!

Second thing was that I heard one of the dogs pawing at something on the deck. It was Lucas! He was attacking my bean plants! He had pulled it over on its side and was digging all the dirt out! I could see no reason for that nonsense and he got a "time out" locked in the house, while I cleaned up the mess he made. He completely decapitated one of the plants (it was in his mouth). So, hopefully they are all okay. Still don't know why he did that.

So, I got to work and trimmed back my Passion Flower vine, it really grows and grows fast, too! Unfortunately, it also takes over and strangles everything in its way. Well, it is still big, but I took off quite a bit of it.

Pulled weeds, dead-headed many flower groups, cut some of the cone flowers back and then I just looked around to see what else needed to be done. Trimmed all the dead artichokes off, but need my big lopers to cut the "woody" stalks down.

Anyway, the Cherry Bushes are growing well, although I need to stake one of them up because it's kinda growing sideways. It was the one that was furthest to the back originally and stretching out to get some sun... gets plenty of sun now, but is still leaning.

The birdseed corn stalk tassels are actually turning into birdseed! Not ready for cultivation yet.

All the Dahlia's are still doing very well. Snapdragons are still doing pretty well, but starting to die off for the season. One Mum is still huge, but no sign of a flower coming on. The smaller one has grown more foliage and has tons more buds on it.

The green and Red Sweet Potato Vines are really growing and spreading. I sorta was expecting they would climb (I attached them to the arch) but they don't seem to want to do that! I will have to retrain them. LOL

This pretty flower finally bloomed, but I've forgotten what it is and the tag is gone. Darn!

Mandy is blossoming top and middle! She's a pretty one!

Last, but not least, after I piled up all my weeds, etc, I came in the house to get a drink of water and when I went back outside, birds had arrived. They must have been waiting for me to leave! LOL Anyway, the only one I got a picture of was the male Hummingbird drinking from the Phygelius Snow Queen.

August 15, 2013

The Banana tree is now sporting a new leaf. I first noticed it growing on August 6 and it was fully developed yesterday afternoon, August 14, 2013.

The movie is only about 30 seconds long and the music is pretty neat! LOL

This is my newest addition to the plant family. They are Ornamental Peppers. Pretty, huh?

This is one of my favorite pictures:

This is another favorite:

The sunflowers are doing great and the birds are loving having them there!

Mandy has graced me with two flowers up at the top of her vine and the promise of more to come.

And, the little veggie garden is growing well, although I think I better get some of those things transplanted to a bigger pot. LOL

August 11, 2013

Apparently, it is very hard for a doggie to get motivated on a Sunday morning at 7am. LOL

Still hasn't bloomed... maybe tonight it will do it.

Finally got the trellis and gate up. Not as easy to actually put up as I thought it would be... but it is up and the gate is on.

The boys lounging on the deck.

Mostly Dahlia pictures, one is the Gaillardia

Birdie's Bed and Breakfast

August 10, 2013

Looked outside into the sunshine this morning to see a funny looking bird in the seed catcher under one of the peanut butter suets! LOL

The sunflowers really perked up and some more of the smaller ones bloomed. Pretty!

I was shocked that the Phygelius Snow Queen had bloomed again... and bloomed even more than it did the first time!

There were tons of these little birds raiding this and that in the garden and feeders.

I took a little movie of the squirrel. I didn't notice until I was reviewing the movie that there is a squirrel hanging down from one of the suets behind the birdhouse tree. Don't know if it was the same squirrel or a different squirrel. Also hadn't notice that Mandy has a new blossom up on top on the railing either until I was watching the movie! LOL I wish I could figure out how to make the music loop for the whole movie, but I haven't figured it out yet.

Later in the day... tis now 405pm.

My trellis arrived. I think it is a good one, but the instructions are really not very clear, in fact, almost not existent... oh well. I got things together to make the arch and then hauled the sides and arch and gates out to where it is going to live. It will look nice there. Unfortunately, construction was not going all that well and I cut one of my knuckles, then I couldn't get the arch up on top of the sides, then the gate wouldn't go on. Maybe it was because I was hurt and it was a zillion humid degrees out with ugly clouds heading over... maybe I was just doing it wrong. Beats me. But it is half together and that's how I left it because it was looking quite thunder-y out and I didn't want to get caught in it.

Peeked into the greenhouse, salad has started growing. LOL

I think the flowers will bloom tomorrow night.

August 9, 2013

First thing I did this morning was to get started on putting the dirt into the raised bed for the Iris's and then empty the bag of rubber mulch on the Cherry and Blueberry "field". The 2' area behind the new bed and the (grassy) brick path will have all the other Iris that I have that are different from the purple ones that are in the box.

Cody was putting up quite a ruckus, so I also rearranged some fencing so he could come out to the side of the yard they are banished from and keep an easier eye on me. LOL This is now a "sinful" delight for them from what I could tell! LMAO
I also put my frog "gatekeepers" back out at the entrance, which now has a gate across it.

Other garden news:

Basjoo is really growing fast now. That new leaf was just barely showing a couple days ago!

Echinopsis is sporting 3 new blossoms that should bloom in the next couple nights.

Dahlia News:
The phantom Orange Dahlia is looking very pretty in the midst of the white Dahlia and the yellow Viola. Of course the scarlet and orange Dahlia's are still producing very well, too.
The Purple Dahlia and Red Dahlia from Mom are looking very good now and I think they will keep producing, too. That orange Snapdragon, in the 3rd picture, is doing fabulous, also a gift from Mom.

Okay, that's all the garden news for now. I noticed the birds have eaten all the good suet, so I guess since the rain has stopped and clouds broke up, I will run out and give them some more. Then, I need to go make some pesto for my pesto chicken tonight!

August 6, 2013

Night falls over the city and it is time for me to go to sleep!

Buddie is visiting again. She seems content to spend most of her time upstairs on my jewelry making desk or asleep on the bed.

The banana plant seems very happy. The fourth leaf has unfurled and a new one is starting!

Osteopermum is doing very well. The Lambs Ear in front of it has finally settled in and is looking great!

Didn't know if these little fellas would survive, but they are all sporting flowers, so I guess they will be fine. Top row L to R: Yellow Dahlia, White Snapdragon, Yellow Snapdragon. Center row L to R: Dahlia not bloomed yet and a purple Dahlia. Bottom row L to R: Orange snapdragons and Brick Red Dhalia.

Scrub Jay stopped by to get himself some Peanut Butter suet.

This crow was trying to eat something, maybe it had peanut butter stuck to the roof of his mouth. Couldn't really tell what he was up to. While watching him, I saw one of his cohorts (not pictured) on the black birdbath. Well, as that other bird came around the bath, I saw that he had my scratchy sponge in his beak and then he flew away with it! Maybe he had pots to clean, I have no idea! LOL (I keep the sponge in the upper part of the bird bath and have frequently found it laying in the bath itself). It was at the precise moment that I saw the second crow that my camera batteries went dead... hence, no photo of the thief.

The Echinopsis has three buds that are growing faster than the rest. The two old flowers have fallen off now and probably in a few days, these three will bloom.

I thought maybe this Gaillardia wasn't going to make it. It was getting pretty brown on the one side, but it has rallied forth and produced new blooms!

The Winter Wall Flower has even managed to give me some blooms!

August 4, 2013

Hot day outside for the boys, but they stayed out there as long as I was out there. Cody went inside where it was cooler for about 30 minutes but then he came back out when I sat down. (Yes, that is my cute knee in the lower right of the photo! LOL)

I did manage to put up a "door" on the greenhouse. Since I had managed, quite easily, to break the puller on the zipper of the original door, I needed to put a new door up. So, I used the thermal plastic stuff for swimming pools to do it. It seemed to work okay, doesn't look that great though.

Little bird was enjoying some Peanut Butter suet.

I happened to look outside and caught this darned bird in my Cosmos just tearing everything up!

Poor Echinopsis, it looks so sad with its dying flowers just hanging there. But, some of the furry things are starting to grow again so there should be more flowers.

Banana plant is showing some life since I moved it outside of the greenhouse full-time. The top leaf is starting to unfurl now.

I don't think this pineapple has grown at all.

Pretty little Monarch butterfly came to visit. It looks like, in the picture, that one of its lower wings is damaged. Poor little thing.

By the late afternoon, I decided to plant some seeds and keep them in the greenhouse. So I basically planted salad. We'll see if it does anything! I also planted the last two ground covers in a planter so they wouldn't die off before I get a chance to put them somewhere! LOL

August 3, 2013

First, the Sunflower field.

And a nice short movie of a couple Hummingbirds that came to visit, music included! LOL

August 1, 2013

The sunflower "field" is looking good. I think 5 have opened now. The heads look like they are forming seeds. The birdseed stalks are looking good too. Two of them have formed seeds so I need to find out the best way and time for harvest.

This flower has bloomed. It is called a Sparkler Allium. I have to say that it's kinda pathetic looking! LOL

Purple Widow's Tears and the White Spiderwort (the same family) continue to bloom. And the little pink Fuchsia, although shaded by the Widow's Tears, has lots of blooms too.

I thought the Dianthus group (small red flowers) and the Phygelius Snow Queen were done for the season, but both decided to bloom again after a few weeks of looking dead! LOL

I don't know what this flower is. I thought maybe it was going to be the Baby's Breath that I had last year, but I don't think that's what it is.

The Sweet Potato vines are growing very well now. They really got going in all that hot weather we had.

This ground cover that I stuffed into an old tree piece last year has finally decided to live AND give me little flowers! What a treat!

The leaves on the yellow and red Begonia's were looking really awful after all the hot sun we had... I thought they were gonner's. But when I looked today, they both are loaded with flowers! Nature is so amazing to me.

This Mum is growing so big and has now surpassed the red Mum in height and width, but it as no buds on it to make flowers. The other Mum has been blooming continually for weeks now.

I have no idea what these really large shamrock looking things are or where they came from, but they invaded the Bear Berry plant. Probably a bird dropped a seed or something, but I'm sure it's a weed. Kinda neat big things, but I will be yanking them out of my bush before they take over.

That little volunteer Viola that I found when I moved the potted wildflowers is showing it's appreciation for getting out in the sun!

The purple Viola and Pansy's that used to live in a hanging basket has really spread quite a bit once I planted it in the ground instead of that basket!

Osteopermum has begun blooming again, a couple days ago there was only one blossom on it. Deadheading really does seem to spur them on to bloom more.

Dahlia's are still looking pretty and have lots of blooms. I think I will move all the Dahlia's to this area for next years' garden. They don't seem to mind the clay too much. LOL

The white Yarrow bloomed but I don't see any sign of the orange Yarrow that is also planted there.

Mandy the Mandevilla plant appears to be happy here on the deck. One blossom has fallen off but there are still 4 bloomed and about 7 more getting ready to bloom. Pretty!

I saw a bird inside of the oldest birdhouse. It had its head poking out of the side hole. By the time I got the camera zoomed in, it left. I'm not sure if there is a nest in there or not and I didn't want to upset the bird if she was watching, so I just let it be. She/he was kinda whitish with black stripes on its cheeks and neck area. But I couldn't get a really good look at it so far away.

Later on, I saw this pretty bird playing around in the Cosmos. (It is not the one that I saw in the birdhouse).

The next fair weather project is going to be to fence off this area around the bushes. Since the neighbors insist on sitting next to the fence and driving my boys crazy AND since it appears that they now have a dog of their own, who also is next to the fence... I need to keep my boys out of there. On hot days, they used to go dig and cool off in the dirt under the bushes. Then, I come along and put all the dirt back under the bushes and they come along and dig it all out again. I don't really enjoy that game. Now the holes are even deeper since they are in there so much... so, I will fence it off before they damage the roots and kill my bushes.

And, of course, what day would be complete without a picture of the boys! LOL

July 30, 2013

I decided to do a little deadheading of flowers so they will keep blooming. Imagine my surprise when I moved the little yellow viola to the side a little and found this beautiful solid orange Dahlia! I didn't plant any solid orange Dahlia's! Where it is growing is where I planted the white Dahlia that finally bloomed! LOL The way the sun was hitting it, it looks like it is not solid colored but it most definitely is a beautiful solid color of orange.

The other Dahlia's that are over by that orange one are not solid color, either.

The other Dahlia that popped up unexpectedly (I thought I dug up all the ones from last year, but then one suddenly grew in that area), is looking great!

Yesterday, I saw this beautiful Tiger Swallowtail on the Butterfly Bush (imagine that! LOL). Unfortunately, it closed its wings just as I snapped the picture.

Yesterday, I also put out some of my homemade peanut butter suet for the birds. When I looked out today the suet was gone... as well as the cage! LOL I found the suet cage on the ground with the door open... suet is gone... hmmmmmmm

The sunflowers are starting to open now. Such pretty things!Looks like they should get seeds.

Sadly, when I looked in on the beautiful cactus flowers...the first one is already dying off. They don't last very long. The second one is showing signs that its going to begin dying off too.

Big sigh :(

There's lots of space left in the green house now that I tidied it up. I think I will plant some salad to grow in there!

July 28, 2013

The Echinopsis has bloomed its first flower of the season. The movie starts on July 19 when the blooms were just nubs and "time lapses" to this morning when it was fully bloomed. There is music to go with it so turn your speakers on. LOL
They bloom at night, so some of the pictures are a little dark in the greenhouse.

July 27, 2013

Later that same day....

May I introduce the newest member of the plant family. It's name is Basjoo. No, I did not name it, that's the name it came with! It is a Musa, which is a cooler climate Banana tree. I didn't notice until I was transplanting it, that it has a new shoot coming out of the dirt!

Got out early this morning while it was cool and cloudy to move the "stairs to no where" out of the way. They used to be the stairs off the back of the house before the deck was built. Was always going to do something clever with them, but I decided I wasn't all that clever because they sat by the house for a year or so! ha

So, I moved them over by the grapes. They suffered in the move. I had to take the steps off and move them in two separate trips because I also figured out that I am not as strong as I was when I put them under the bathroom window to get them out of my way. So, one piece broke off the newer part of them and I didn't get them nailed back together in a perfect way. But, then again no one is going to be on them, even the dogs have never ventured up them! haha

After I got them moved and put back together, I took the arms of the grapes and started them growing that direction, moved the "still" and draped some more on that, added the two crock pots and called it good. This configuration also gives the boys more shaded grass to lay on if they are out there with me and it is warm out.

I'll "pretty it up" later, it got hot being out in the sun. So, I quit.

Looked around the garden a bit. Everyone was looking happy since they got watered last night. LOL I had to trim back the Passion Flower before it strangled my Jasmine plant that is crawling up the opposite side of the trellis. The Jasmine is about 2/3 of the way up, so it's doing really well. I think I will get another black trellis and put it up at the opposite path opening, then move the Jasmine over to it for next year.

Orange Snap Dragons I got from Mom are blooming again and this time has lots of blossoms, very pretty!

And, the bird's garden of seeds they "planted" are doing very well. Sunflowers are showing yellow and the "corn" is producing some seeds. Nice of them to grow their own food! LOL

The newest color-changing light. It is the one on the left of the screen. I should have looked closer at it when I got it because it is not solar, I have to go turn it on and off and it runs on batteries. Oh well, it is pretty. Turn your speakers on.... the movie will Jazz up your morning! LOL

July 25, 2013

Okay, last movie for awhile. LOL Night lights in the garden. Not really that impressive! LMAO

Close up photos from earlier:

Another movie! LOL

July 22, 2013

Hey, this is pretty cool! This is part of a video I took of the crow on the wire in the backyard. I was just trying stuff out on the camera and found that I could download/upload to Photobucket to then put my little movie on my webpage! Cool, huh? LOL Yeah, simple things, simple minds. Guilty as charged! LOL What fun! A new toy! LOL Click the little arrow in the upper left corner of the movie box.

Okay, on to the Cacti update!

Echinopsis' little fuzzy things are growing and multiplying! They will be the flowers. As you can see, two of them are already about 1.5" long. I counted about 28 fuzzy things on her! Hope they all bloom, will be gorgeous!

The Aloe Vera is turning green again, this time it actually shows up in the photo. It got a horrible purple pallor when it was in the greenhouse, but seems quite happy in the direct morning to noon sun!

I don't remember what any of this bowl of cacti are called and am too lazy to look it up. But that tallest skinny one has grown about 1.5" since I moved it to the greenhouse. I think the one next to it got wider and the roundish one in front is bigger now too. The other ones haven't seemed to have changed.

The Christmas cactus has added about 2 dozen new leaves or more and the one in front of it that Mom gave me (forgot the name), has added about a 1/2 dozen new leaves.

The big Optunia has suddenly added about 15 new paddles and the smaller one has about 10 new ones growing.

That's it for the cactus. They are all doing amazingly well!

Many years ago, I had bought a little "corn plant". I was dispatching for the State then. Poor little thing couldn't get enough light at my apartment so it wasn't doing all that well. So, since it was a 24 hour office, meaning lights were on all the time, I took it to work and it flourished there. I was so happy! Well, when I changed jobs and moved to California, of course I took Cornelius the Cornplant with me. It was doing fabulous there too. I can't remember why but I think I wanted to propogate it so I got instructions and followed them, cutting into my Cornelius, and it died not long after. I felt really bad about that. Well, I have finally gotten a new Dracaena. It is a Dragon Tree. It's not exactly the same as Cornelius, but they didn't have one so I got this pretty plant instead. I shall name it Draco, like in the movie DragonHeart! LOL

Draco is now in a larger pot and living in the greenhouse where it will get plenty of light. I hope it gets big like Cornelius did. :)

Last, but never least, Cody and Luke.

July 20, 2013

First I found a place for Mandy the Mandevilla plant on the deck. Hopefully the vine will get long and produce flowers along the top of the railing! Will be very pretty with my Portucala below it!

Butterfly bushes are doing great. One of these days I will dig them up and move them, but it's good where it is for now! LOL

Since I was having a basically "do not much" kind of day.... I started out to tidy up the garage and, of course, got side-tracked to working around the garden! LOL
I decided that the "pot garden" with all the wildflowers was just way too crowded looking... so, since it was nice and cool outside, I was going to move the taller ones to the bird garden area.

So, I did that! LOL I moved the Cosmos and the Bachelor Buttons over by the birdhouse tree and moved the solar birdbath between them. I like it!

I also noticed that the Sunflowers that the birds planted had grown quite tall, about waist high or a little more on me.

And, they are all starting to bud!

Then, I moved the Zinnia pot, another Bachelor Button pot, and the Painted Daisy pot back away from the short trellis.

After I moved those pots of flowers, I noticed there is a pretty purple Viola growing sideways in the pot that was supposed to have Asters in it!

When I started to move another flowerless pot, I discovered yet another Viola that I hadn't planted! LOL

I decided to move the Bachelor Button pot that also has Cosmos growing in it, over with the other ones in the Bird Garden.

NOTE: I have since put the Cosmos in between the Bachelor Buttons because a Crow knocked it over. It's pretty top heavy in the pot with those tall stems.. so they are all now by the Sunflowers.

As I was leaving the area, I looked down and noticed my Cucumber plant is getting blossoms on it. It will probably grow little gerhkins! The plant is not very big! LOL

I was sitting under the awning taking one of many breaks and some birds were out enjoying that I refilled all birdfeeders, suet, and both bird baths. However, I was a bit annoyed that this little sucker was knocking birdseed all over the ground with its wings and also knocking birdseed into the birdbath.. so I moved the feeder to a different place. Was easier than moving everything else! LOL

July 19, 2013

Took a little stroll to take a look at the flowers while they were getting watered.

The wildflower section was looking especially cheerful!

Close Ups:

And, a few surprises!

The Candy Stripe Dianthus managed a couple more blooms! It's name is not really Candy Stripe, but that's what Mom and I call it.

Been waiting forever for this Dahlia to bloom... and it finally has!

This little Dahlia has also managed to sprout a flower! I thought maybe it had died from not getting enough water in the heat.

Pretty little sweet peas are on their second bloom cycle.

These Pansy's and Viola's keep blooming. I'm amazed really. But now they are getting covered up by the Sweet Potato vine so I need to get the vine back on track.

All the rest of my Artichokes have gone to seed. Darn it. I only got to eat 2 of them and the other 3 I picked I didn't fix them before they just looked too old so they got thrown out.

Grapes are doing great! Can't wait until they ripen in the Fall... I'll be making some juice and jelly with these and probably David's grapes. I think I will can the juice so I can use it for the jelly etc later on.

Grapes from the back.

Echinopsis Eyerisii is doing very well. All the cacti are. All those black fuzzy things will be pretty pink flowers (they are growing and starting to "reach out" now) and the round babies she has SHOULD fall off and root on their own like the first three did.

And, lastly, the newest flower, a Mandevilla x Amabilis. I will call her Mandy for short. She will live on the deck and can "vine" around the railing. They can grow up to 20' long!

July 15, 2013

Well, I finally got out there this morning and worked in the "Iris field". Iris really don't need any water at this time of the year, in fact many just pull the Rhizomes up and store them in the garage till Spring.

I pulled up about 40 or so of them and then moved one of the little Blueberry plants forward and moved both Cherry bushes forward. Now, the stuff that needs water is all in the same area. Later, I will move the big Blueberry plant to the North side of Art E Choke. Covered the area around the new "berry/cherry" area with yard fabric (what a pain in the butt) and put my 4 bags of rubber mulch on top of that. I need about 3 more bags, but I'm truly not in the mood to go spend money *shock*

Trimmed the bushes in the back by the bird garden so they would stop pulling my hair when I'm back there and trimmed the Raspberry plants back. Ate the ones I found that were still good. Had a crow up on the lines bitching me out the whole time. LOL Still a lot of work to do on the north fence line.

Then I cut back that Japanese Knotweed and couldn't find the Roundup so I just poured Weed Killer down its stem. I think I took the Roundup to the farm. Also, cut back some of the Butterfly Bush and dined on the ripe, large, Blueberries and still had that crow up there squawking at me! LOL Guess he/she was saving them for itself! neener neener neener! LOL

My little girl hummingbird came by... oh, yes, I know it probably wasn't the same one, so hush! LOL Anyway, she didn't stay long. I also saw a pretty Monarch butterfly that came to visit, never had one of those in the garden before that I'm aware of.

Then, I noticed this Dahlia growing. Its that green stuff next to and to the front of the little purple viola's on the left. I didn't plant it there, but last year I think I had Dahlia's in that area. Maybe it just finally found its way out of the dirt? Beats me!

My Begonia, like Mom's, has gone crazy in this weather we've been having!

Little Fuchsia is opening up more. It has tons of blossoms ready to go. Should be pretty stunning when it's all blossomed out!

These Passion Flowers just amaze me. They're very interesting if you look closely at how they are put together!

I just thought this made a cute picture! LOL

July 13, 2013

I spent a little time wandering around in the garden, seeing what needed to be trimmed back, what might have blossomed, that sort of thing.

Bird Garden looking South and looking North, respectively.

Northeast corner, North center, and Northwest corner

Southwest Corner, front and side

Whole garden looking to the North

Cherry Bushes, Honeysuckle and Artichoke with Butterfly Bush in the background

Grapes are doing really well. I am very pleased and it is loaded with grape clusters!

Was really happy and surprised to discover two of my unknown plants are actually Fuchsia's. Only one is blooming right now and it has TONS of buds!

The Portucala look great!

While I was looking around, I looked up at the feeders I just filled yesterday and noted that two were about half full and one was completely empty. What in the world??

OH.... that's where it went! Sigh. Guess it must be easier to eat it down there. sigh... grumble

The Candy Stripe Dianthus is sporting some new blooms! Thought it might have been done for the season!

Newest additions to the garden.... to take the place of the now blank spots thanks to squirrels or whatever stealing my bulbs.... A Gaillardia and Wall Flower. Hopefully the Wall Flower is going to bloom again when I get it planted in the ground. (Yes, they were rescues)

July 9, 2013

A birdseye view (yes, again! LMAO). But, I've added a nighttime version this time! Unfortunately, the camera appears to have had some trouble with focusing in the dark with so many changing lights. LOL

I took a stroll around the garden this morning to see what had bloomed in my absence. The honeysuckle had really blossomed out! It's a pretty plant but not near as sweet smelling as the plain old yellow one at the farm! LOL

As I was taking the pictures, I felt something brush my hair and heard the familiar sound of a hummingbirds wings! When I turned she was just hovering in the air, my eye level, and looking at me! So, I talked to her and she flew over to a branch on the Twirly Things tree where the hummingbird feeders are. She just sat there, posed for me to take pics, and appeared to be listening to me as I jabbered on to her by tilting her head to one side occasionally! Was really very neat and funny, too!

So, when she got tired and left, I continued on to see what had bloomed that was new.

Painted Daisy's (I think):

I think that pathetic blue flower is an Allium but it's pretty sad looking. LOL
Not entirely sure what the other flowers are because I can't see the tag I put on the pot they are in. And the wildflowers got so wild, I can't get to the pot either! LMAO

The purple Butterfly Bush is blooming. Such a pretty rich purple it is too!

Blueberries on the big bush are starting to turn purple. One did... so I ate it! Yummy! LOL

Raspberries are out of control. All the ripe ones are in the middle, of course. Guess I need to get some pruning done. sigh.

The birds' planting of sunflowers seem to be doing well! LOL

Japanese Knotweed. Considered a noxious plant in Oregon. Hard to kill it and it will take over with no problem if you don't stay on it. This one will get poisoned tonight or tomorrow night.

The Aloe Vera seems to be doing much better since I put it outside in the sun. It is starting to turn green again instead of that bluish hue that it got in the green house.

Wiegela, Cosmos, and Portucala are all doing well.

Cacti and Pineapple too!

I've decided I really like Dahlia's. These plants just get prettier and prettier and seem to last a long time!!

This little Dahlia on the left, I didn't expect to do much of anything, but seems like it's doing very well considering what a little scrubby thing it was! LOL
The one on the right, next to the yellow Viola, it keeps getting bigger, but there are still no flowers on it!

July 6, 2013

As I was backing in to my driveway, anticipating loading the car up tonight, I happened to notice this Tiger Swallowtail visiting the neighbor's Butterfly Bush. Not bad considering I took it through the car window! LOL

Well, anyhow, got the car unloaded and was going to mow the front yard Cat's Eyes (similar to a Dandelion), but I got side-tracked (there's a shock! LOL) and decided to move the bird feeders so the seed wouldn't get wet when I watered the garden. Set up the automatic water thing and hope it will work. I'll mow the weeds when I get back.

After that, I decided to move the greenhouse over and turn it around so now the opening is towards the house but it is perpendicular to where it was before, giving me more space to veg out when needed on the back deck! LOL Plus, the opening of the greenhouse faced my "relax" area under the awning... which meant all the heat from the greenhouse was facing my "relax" area! So, I changed that! LOL

Then, it was time to plant some flowers.

Mom had gotten herself some Portucula (think that was the spelling) and had several leftover, so I got those. Pretty things. After we had lunch, we had stopped and got some planters and dirt (yes, I got frogs too! LMAO) So, now I needed to get them planted. Which I did!


The new frogs!

Then, I planted the Sweet Peas and another Dahlia from Mom's house and the Gerbera Daisy that I rescued from Fred Meyers on my way home.

Not sure what else I will get done tonight in prep for tomorrow, but I'm guessing it won't be alot! LOL I'll just get my butt moving earlier in the morning!

July 5, 2013

Since it was cloudy and cool out this morning I decided that I would tackle the bushes in the back yard. I'm not sure if I will finish it myself or hire someone to do the top. I can never reach all the way to the back of the bushes if I do the top of it, so it comes out looking pretty goofy.

The garden spots are all getting lots of color in them and for the most part looking pretty healthy.

Then I cut back all the Iris leaves. Each hole has 4 -5 plants in it and there are 30 holes. So there are 120 - 150 Iris!

After I finished with the bushes and put most of what I cut into the barrels for pickup this week, I mowed the yard and did all the weed eating.
Then, I planted the "Stepables" ground cover in the brick work. You can hardly see the bricks any more. I hope the little ground covers will survive over there.

Decided to move the "still" closer to the grape vines. Thought it would be a nice decoration. I need an old whiskey jug or maybe make a wine bottle decor to go over there, too.

Planted the other two Dahlia's from Mom's on each side of the Sunflower that I think is going to eventually die.

After I got all the gardening done, started walking around seeing if anything new was going on. I've been watching this tall plant to see what it was, but I think it is just a weed with white flowers!

This little Dahlia from Mom's has bloomed.

A couple bees came to visit the Coneflowers

Orange Begonia has really blossomed out!

The Cosmos is starting to bloom, Coreopsis is looking very happy and cheerful and the Oriental Lily's are still doing well.

Final gardening act was to move my newest solar frogs back out to the entrance where I originally had them.

Now all that's left is to put everything away (tools), water the garden and move the awning over by 2". That will be enough for today's work.

July 4, 2013

Happy Birthday America!

Read about The Fourth of July here

Just some awning pictures. As I said before, there are still things to be done with it to make it look better.

Looking out the slider door with it unfurled.

Looking from the hot tub area

Looking from the garden

July 2, 2013

Just a few pics from late afternoon and night.

First thing when I got home I put the awning up over the slider doors in the back. I hope, when it gets hotter that it will detour the heat from those doors. I still need to put up some cross braces, but it will do for now.

Later, I noticed that the remaining artichokes are starting to flower and it's too late to pick them for eating... (the sprinkler is on)

Much of the Coreopsis has bloomed. One of my favorite flowers! Very cheerful. :)

More of the Oriental Lily's have opened too!

The Wiegala is looking very nice!

Luke decided that the sprinkler for the grapes was a dandy place for a hot doggie to get a drink! LOL

Night finally fell and I was able to get better pics of the butterfly solar light I got and the Hummingbird solar light that Mom gave me.

This mushroom is just kinda eerie looking! LOL

It's hard to believe that half of the year is already gone! Sometimes I wonder just what I managed to accomplish over the months and then I look back at my little webpages and say "ahhhhh, yeah, that's right!" LOL

For January through June 2013 click here

July 1, 2013

When I went out to do a weather check, I happened to notice that the Trumpet Vine has started blooming.

As it started cooling down a bit outside, some of the birds came out to eat.

These are not solar, I have to go out and turn them on if I want to see them. They are butterflies on a string and change colors.

I got this color changing solar globe a while back. I thought there was something wrong with it because it wouldn't light up... determined yesterday it was operator error. LOL

These are the Hummingbird (on the left) and Butterfly (on the right) solar lights that change color. I couldn't get a close shot of them but will try something different tomorrow.

I got these two cute solar frogs yesterday at a sale.

I thought they would look cute at the entrance to the garden area. Unfortunately, one of them can't get enough light there to light up at night.

So, I had to move them here so they would get light. I just can't see them from the deck. :( UPDATE: That one still didn't light up so I will have to see what's wrong with it.

This pretty butterfly was in the greenhouse yesterday and fluttering so frantically to find a way out. I finally got it cornered and it calmed down and got on my hand. It even stayed there after I brought it out to the open air. Was just beautiful, but the dog scared it and it left my hand before I could get a picture of it. Far as I can tell, it is a Tiger Swallowtail. It's wings totally covered my 4 fingers (and then some) where it was sitting on the top of my hand. From what I read, they are common in the area. However, I have never seen one in my yard before and have never had one sitting on my hand! Was really very cool! Tickled a little! LOL

So after I filled suet cages, filled bird feeders, filled squirrel feeders, and planted 4 plants this morning. I did a little "look-see" around garden to see if anything new was going on.

Coreopsis (the yellow flower with dark red around the center), is starting to bloom. It's a plant from last year. It grew much bigger this year, so when it really gets blooming it's going to be gorgeous!

Oriental Lily from last year is blooming finally!

Red Dahlia is blooming like crazy.

Orange and Scarlet Dahlias and the Yellow Viola are covered with flowers.

Widows Tears are apparently happy. That's the most blooms they have had at one time since I planted it.

Planted the Red and white Dianthus, snapdragons, and little Dahlia that I got from Mom's house in the old Iris section. The new Dianthus are behind the white and purple ones.

Mom gave me a color changing solar Hummingbird stake and I got a color changing solar Butterfly stake and put them here. They were quite vibrant last night. Tonight I will take pictures of them.

And, lastly, for now, a ConeFlower close up.

Portland Jan - June 2013

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