Posts Tagged ‘plants’

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I’m in the mood to plan a winter garden. I think in the coming week that is one of the things I shall endeavor to do in one of my blank notebooks. Design a garden. Now planning such a garden, and even implementing it, will in no way save the world or “fight the powers that be” but it will center me and that’s important for when I am ready to deal with the insanities of this world through words or images, my pocketbook or my vote.


I did garden this past spring and summer. It was a hodge podge, not a great failure, but not quite the success of previous years. Even so I did find joy in cooking with the fresh herbs and even in watching their beautiful decay when I would forget to water them. Ahem.


Growing lavender indoors was a spur of the moment experiment. Not wholly successful but still growing and smelling delightful. That’s the plant I unfortunately watered too much. But I’m learning.


Part of the winter garden will include the geraniums given as a gift by a young friend not knowing that I mostly grow herbs inside. The red petals, when fresh and now dried, brighten several rooms and I hope they will do so this winter. We’ll see …

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Found in a field in Maine. I have no idea what this plant is but thought it rather luminous. If you know, please share.


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I need to prepare for winter in all sorts of ways. I am beginning by planning my garden. I finally, finally, finally cleared away those things that had died or had served their time and their purpose. I consolidated the potted herbs that thrived like the oregano with those herbs struggling but worth nurturing like the tarragon. Spread around me are empty pots, vases and votives. So many votives in different colors and sizes. I love lighting tealight candles in the winter time, not so much to banish the darkness but to bring out the beauty as light and shadow dance on the various surfaces.

In previous winters I’ve grown tomatoes and potatoes in addition to herbs, sprouts and edible flowers. I live in a house with many windows so there is a wonderful greenhouse effect. Though I sometimes freeze the plants do surprisingly well as light pours in at different angles throughout the wintry days. It’s not yet happened but it will — the oak tree that towers over one side of the house will lose its leaves and even more light will enter. I try to remember that as I plan my gardening strategy.

It is also a decorating strategy. What is it that I want to see and perhaps even need to see in the winter time as I enter a room or hallway in my home? What do I want others to see? While I don’t think I think it through that thoroughly it is a rather, soothing creative time. It might also be a procrastination time … there are so many books I need to read, want to read, and things I need to write. But I choose to believe that putting those things aside, concentrating on this task of cleaning, arranging and strategizing is part of my creative process.

I am done for the day and pleased enough with the results so far. My to do list for next week includes buying a small bag of potting soil and then I’ll begin to plant my sprouts and we’ll see what else falls in to the soil.

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I suspect my perspective of these flowers, mostly planted in a median strip, are somewhat colored by having recently watched a documentary on the Hubble telescope. Enjoy, and have a good day, folks.

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Not with my one pea pod. In the right light I can see the tiny peas. One for sure. Two maybe. I’m hoping for three. The whole pod is about three-quarters of an inch. The largest pea is the size of the smallest seed bead and the smallest pea like a period. Why does such a tiny thing bring me joy? Even in the midst of pain, physical or otherwise, I look at that pod and it makes me smile. And I wish I could box up that feeling, in tiny boxes of course, and mail it out to the friends and family who need some joy in their lives. Or at least a momentary smile.

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I ended the year feeling a bit prickly.  But I do not like to stew in negativity and so this morning I decided to spend a few moments photographing the literal prickles on the few cacti I have scattered about my home.

No problems were solved but the act of movement, of looking outside of myself, was a wonderful exercise. And, to be honest, I think I’ve taken these cacti for granted. Tucked in various corners, they need so little care that I sometimes forget about them as I fawn over delicate sprouts and herbs and the occasional flowers and veggies I grow indoors.

I’m glad they were there on this New Year’s Day. 😉

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As a child I remember a wire fence separating our house and yard from that of the neighbor’s.  Along this fence twined the milkweed vines so thick that we were sometimes a stop for errant monarch butterflies.  And there entwined amidst these sturdy vines were the delicate strands of the honeysuckle.

A friend taught me how to harvest the nectar.  Quite tasty though I did wonder how long would it take to fill a glass or even just a thimble.

Sometimes I’d attempt to braid the vines to make tiny crowns for my dolls’ heads (because my brothers would not deign to wear them).  The flowers adorned play dough cakes and moist mud pies.  With hindsight, I wish that I had placed them upon the dark red mulberries that I once handed to my dad on a tea set plate.

Just some of the thoughts that came to mind as I recently stood next to a wall of honeysuckle.

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as seen through the rippled glass

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The other cool thing about indoor gardening these past few months has been discovery.  When heart shaped leaves began springing up in my pots in the soil I had taken from the landlord’s garden, I thought that they were clover.

Some of the patches of what I thought was clover were so thick that I decided to scoop them up and plant them in their own tiny pots, a bit of green to help us stay sane this long winter. The leaves tasted a bit like lemon.

By mid-March the greenery had begun to flower, small bright yellow blooms that quickly spread their petals and then just as quickly faded away.  No blooms like I’d ever seen in the clover I remembered from my childhood in Virginia.  Still, I described the plant as clover.  But when the seed pods formed, I realized I should probably do my homework.

No clover do I have growing in the kitchen and other sunny nooks.  With search terms including shape of leaves, color of flowers and seed pods, I was able to discover it is wild sorrel, or in this case, yellow wood sorrel.  Still edible, thank goodness.  I doubt I’ll ever grow enough to reproduce the recipes I’ve found but it is a fun journey nevertheless.

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