Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Back in Business

It’s nice to be back with everyone again. I’ve just spent the last ten days reloading our computer after catching a nasty virus from a garden blog I visited. Actually, two blogs I visited, one of which had a virus that was more destructive than the other one. Long story short, I had to reload everything back on the computer again and reinstall four years of windows updates to add to the mix. I was going to do a blog on this whole subject, but to be perfectly frank, I’m tired of thinking about it because I’ve been forced to spend every free minute I’ve had the past week and a half fixing things. So, in a nutshell here is what I’ve learned from this experience and I want to share it with you.

If you have advertisements on your blog or if you are visiting a blog with ads, you should be very cautious. In one click you can expose yourself to a host of malware that is undetectable by your virus protection program. The Trojans are hidden in flash ads, for those of you that don’t know what a flash ad is; it would be one that has some type of movement to it. It may be a slide show or it could be a mini movie of sorts and you don’t have to click on the ads to be infected. I would say in almost all instances the person that has the ad posted has no idea they are infecting the PC of their visitors. Most of the time it will only slow your computer down, in a worst case scenario you will be infected by a popup virus that will disable all of your update programs on windows and will eventually cause you computer to freeze up. This is exactly what happened to me.

I’d also like to mention that the particular viruses I got were non-detectable by McAfee, Norton, Panda and Trend Micro. I was finally able to identify them with Kaspersky, but even then I was unable to delete, quarantine or clean the five viruses from my system. If you are placing ads on you blog or if you visit a new blog loaded with them I would recommend you use extreme caution or simply leave the site.

Now that we have this issue out of the way, check out these things that were blooming while we were gone. Get comfortable, this could be a long one. If you get tired of reading, then just enjoy the pictures.

Jamie and I have thirty-three different types of cannas and we just got all of them this year so it’s been exciting to watch them bloom. This first one is ‘Stadt Fellbach’ I really don’t even know how to begin to describe the color of it. It’s a medium sized canna and only gets about two and a half feet tall.

‘Stadt Fellbach’

Stadt Fellbach

Now, I know you didn’t even think for one minute, that there wouldn’t be daylilies posted today, did you? This one is ‘Little Bumblebee’. It’s a pretty shade of orange but the name confuses me, I see nothing that reminds me of a bumble bee.

‘Little Bumblebee’

Little Bumble Bee

We introduced several new climbers to the mix this year; this is a ‘Snail Vine’. Last night while I was reading my Alabama Gardener magazine; I discovered a wonderful article on vines and such in this months edition. I'm so happy I found this magazine on Phillip's site. Did you know when a vine puts out its little shoots it starts to look for something to wind around and if it doesn’t find anything it will die? I found that to be so amazing, of course that isn’t all of them, only the ones the put out the curly tips or "twiners". It’s actually smart enough to put a shoot in another direction to find something to climb, almost as if there is some sort of thought process involved.

‘Snail Vine’

Snail Vine

I am so proud of our Crepe Myrtles, they are just blooming their little hearts out for the first time. I’ve wanted some ‘Natchez’ trees for the longest time and I could never find them. Well, this year not only did we find them, but we also found them shaped like I wanted as well and at an incredible price to boot. I will admit one thing though; when I planted them I had no idea that they could get thirty feet tall. They will do just fine where I planted them, but they will be hanging over on my neighbor’s property and I’ve tried to be more conscious of where I plant things after Annie reminded me about the whole over hang thing. Judy says she thinks it will be lovely, she’s lived in that house for thirty-two years, but she may not always be there.



This is ‘Double Passion’ I was really hoping for a more breathtaking picture of this, but my camera lens kept fogging up from the change in temperature and the sun was moving into a different position. This is the best I could do for now.

‘Double Passion’

Double Passion

‘Mary Todd’ is another pretty daylily, but it’s very susceptible to leaf streak and this plant got a bad dose of it this year. I’ve been treating it and it’s looking much better, but I really had hoped to share it with some people this year. It’s not a bad fungus and for the most part, just makes the leaves look bad, but people can be very peculiar about their garden. I don’t want to be accused of passing a bug around. Some daylilies are more resistant than others and ‘Mary Todd’ has the weakest resistance.

‘Mary Todd’

Mary Todd

This Canna is ‘Tropical Sunrise’, it grows to the same height as the previous one. None of the cannas we planted are considered invasive. If they were invasive it would only mean we have more to share with friends.

‘Tropical Sunrise’

Tropical Sunrise

‘Chicago Apache’

Chicago Apache

The monarda is really putting on a show for us. I’m going to have to move it after it gets done blooming this year. I had no idea when I planted it that it would grow as tall as it has. I would leave it where it is, but the ‘Red Dragon’ is being hidden by it, plus it really needs to go further back into the bed. It’s standing proud at the edge of the bed right now almost as if saying I will not be ignored and I will play second fiddle to no plant in this garden. At the risk of pumping its little ego it probably is the prettiest thing when have blooming right now.

‘Raspberry Wine’

Raspberry Wine

‘Lusty Leland’

Lusty Leland

‘Luxury Lace’

Luxury Lace



‘Gentle Shepherd’

Gentle Shepherd

I received this canna in trade this past winter. The nice lady I got if from has no idea what the name might be, it’s another pass along plant. She says it’s always been Granny’s Canna to her, so, that’s the name I gave it as well.


This last photo is ‘Dawn Pink’ and it is the cutest little thing. It only grows to about foot and a half high. The foliage is a wonderful shade of bronze. It stays so compact that I would almost consider making a small hedge of sorts or a border with it. You know, it just occurred to me it would be the perfect thing to put under the bird bath. I’ll talk to Jamie and we may just do that! Well, I hope I haven’t bored you with my ramblings today. :-) As always, we are so proud you stopped by for a visit and we will post a new entry soon.

'Dawn Pink'

Dawn Pink

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Trying to Beat the Heat

I know I said post before last I would try not to put so many pictures on each entry, but I just can’t help myself. Yes, I have done it again. The pictures will be slowing down soon anyway as we approach fall. Jamie and I first concentrated on spring blooming plants, this year we worked on summer blooming plants and next year we will work on fall. So ya’ll just hang in there a little bit longer while I subject you to more images of the blooms from our garden.

The sun has been relentless the past couple of weeks and all the plants have really taken a beating. The two maples in the front yard and one of the dogwoods have a few crispy leaves on them where the battery went bad in the water sprinklers and we didn’t catch it in time. They aren’t dead, but they look like they’ve been in a war. I guess I should be thankful they are still alive, but I just don’t like them looking so tattered. Most especially when I spend the greater part of my free time perusing beautiful gardens online with flawless plants that look nothing like our pitiful trees. For once, I wish someone would post some pictures of their mistakes so I could confirm I’m not the only one that does it. Every now and then I would like to see a wilted shrub or a tree with half the leaves on it burnt to a crisp.

Last night we finally got some rain for the first time in weeks. It wasn’t a lot, but right now I’ll take whatever we can get. It’s been so dry I didn’t even bother to cut the grass last week. It was crunchy last night; hopefully it will be showing a little more green this afternoon. Well, why don’t we move ahead with some of the pictures and what better way to start than with a daylily?

‘Chorus Line’

Chorus Line

Last winter I was visiting a friend’s garden and while I was there I found some seed pods on a trellis so, naturally I reached up there and pulled some them off. I had no idea what they were and since the actual gardener was gone no one could identify them. I planted them in the hopes that they might be Black Eye Susan vine. They turned out to be morning glory vines so I’m just going to snatch them up.

Morning Glory

‘Frances Fay’

Frances Fay

I got these mums from Lowes when they were half dead last year for 19¢ a piece. They’re so large this year they look like small shrubs. I have really enjoyed them this spring.

‘Frosty Jeanette’

Frosty Jeanette

‘Fragrant Treasure’

Fragrant Treasure

Jamie and I started a collection of cannas this past spring. We currently have 29 different varieties. I don’t think we will be adding anymore to the collection. They’re pretty, but I’m not as big a fan of them as I am the daylilies. If you happen to like them I highly recommend Horn Canna Farm. They range in price from $1.25 to $1.75 and you get large healthy tubers. The less expensive is the standard and the more expensive of the two prices are considered the Collectors Choice.



‘Striped Beauty’

Striped Beauty

‘Joan Senior’

Joan Senior

‘Indian Shot’

Indian Shot

‘Little Girl’

Little Girl

‘Green Wyoming’

Green Wyoming

‘Irving Hepner’

Irving Hepner

Here are some glads we planted last year. We’ve considered planting more, but I’m sort of torn because the bloom time it so short lived. I suppose we could tuck them here and there.



‘Chicago Mist’

Chicago Mist





Monday, June 9, 2008

A Little Something Different

'A Walk in the Park'
by Debra Brousseau


I thought for this post I would do something a little different. I wanted to share something very special with everyone, a book of poetry that has been published that was written by my sister, Debra Brousseau. There are so many writers that take a peek at our blog every now and then; I knew you would understand the importance of what she has accomplished and how proud I am of her for doing so.

Every morning at sunrise Debra goes for a walk in a park near her home in Pensacola, Florida. As she made her trips around the trails and pathways, she was always amazed at the things she would see and the thoughts that flooded her mind as she watched the sunrise. While she walked she found her psyche inundated by poetry that cried out to be written down on paper. That’s just what she did when she returned home every morning. It was at her husband Paul’s encouragement that she sent it to a publisher to be put into print. The first copies sold out before they were ever even officially released to the book stores.

Debra draws her inspiration from nature and that’s a large part of what she writes about. You will also find other subjects in her poems from childhood memories to mundane daily activities. All as seen thru the eyes of a woman in her fifties that has finally learned to live and enjoy her life to the fullest. You can find her book online at Amazon and Books a Million. It’s well worth the read, sure to provoke a giggle or two from you and I know my sister would appreciate your support.

Below is one of my favorite poems from her book, it's called 'Wild Flowers'.

'Wild Flowers'

A saddened soul looks not up, but to the ground
Thus, a wise God scattered wild flowers around.

Through weeds and crevices and sidewalk cracks
They struggle to share joy that a sad soul lacks.

The wild flowers are bouquets for one’s soul
In yellows and purples and reds so bold.

The plants stand tall and hold blooms high
Their precious gift offered to passers-by.

Tiny blooms and large blooms both high and low
In sun or shade, wherever they can grow.

In all shapes and sizes a feast for sight
Fragrance so sweet----stirs a heart’s appetite.

So remember, my friend, when a wildflower you see
It’s been placed just there so happier you may be.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Daylilies Galore!

It had to happen sooner or later, Jamie and I are tapped out on garden funds for the time being. If the rising cost of gas permits we will be on our way to the Keys in August, we need to start putting back a little cash for vacation so our savings account will take less of a beating. That means our beloved little garden fund will take a serious crunch. That’s okay, right now I’m very pleased with the progress we’ve made and before long it will be too hot to do much outside anyway. We do have several projects planned that won’t be that expensive to do. I’m sure I can find things around the house to keep me busy. I’m not going to lie about though. I was Jonesin’ like a junkie needing a heroin fix being away from the garden centers this weekend. I still broke down and spent twenty eight dollars on daylilies, which was nothing compared to what we usually spend.

We haven’t had any rain for quite sometime now and the weather man has been promising it since last Wednesday. Still no sign of it, all around us it’s coming down in buckets and missing us. The garden isn’t suffering any because of our new drip system, Yay! Let me say that again, Yay! I can not express to you enough what a blessing that irrigation system is going to be this summer. The grass is starting to take a beating though and it’s looking a little crunchy. Yesterday I was running back an forth in and out of the house trying to decide what daylilies I had taken pictures of and boy was that a hot dry heat. I took a picture of a daylily yesterday morning and by yesterday afternoon it was dried on the stem. I’ll just have to go around early to get my pictures. Below are some of the things blooming right now and yes, there are more daylilies pictures and there will most definitely be more to come.

I’m still just as tickled as I can be about the Shasta Daisies. These ‘Crazy Daisies’ are pretty flowers but my favorites are the ones with the simple petals. A real sweetheart named Lynn sent me a cultivar named ‘Becky’ and I can’t wait until it blooms. She said it spreads really fast, which is perfect for an impatient person like me.

‘Crazy Daisy’


This daylily is a pretty thing, don’t you think? In the past I haven’t really given much thought to color when planting things. I do good just to keep it alive. There is so much to consider, light conditions, soil PH, water, plant size and color too. When you have to take all that into consideration it seems to become more like a job than a hobby. However, when I took this picture I couldn’t help but notice that the bloom seems to blend really well with the purple fountain grass behind it. In the future I’ll try to take that into account more often.

‘Always Afternoon’


Verbena Bonariensis


I could comment on every one of the photos I’ve posted this time around, but that would make this entry really long. Honestly, I’m not sure with all the blogs out there that anyone actually has the time to do much reading, so why don’t we just enjoy the pictures and I’ll try not to post so many them in the next entry.

‘Stella Supreme’








'Siloam Doodlebug'

Siloam Doodlebug



'Raspberry Pixie'


I don't know what this is, but I'm sure someone out there does. Annie, Philip what is it?


'Strawberry Candy'


This is some type of Tiger Lily, I'd really like to know the name of it as well. I like to know the names of the plants in the garden.


'Gordon Biggs'




'Theresa Hall'


Texa Lilac AKA Vitex. I'm also trying to grow some Texas Mountain Laurel from seed now. I hope they make it.