May 16, 2010

No coffee outside this a.m.

I woke up to the pitter-patter of raindrops, so no moseying around on the deck with a mug of liquid sunshine this morning. As I pulled out of the drive this morning, I was informed we were under (another) tornado warning.   Fortunately, no tornadic activity came to pass.  After the rain, I thought I'd slip out and get a few pictures, just to remind myself what these things looked like when I first planted them.  Then I can see what they look like after I tend or neglect them for a while!  Here are the three pots that survived another winter, decked out with some purple pennisetum grass, fuchsia-colored geraniums, coleus in various shades of pink and red, some twinspur, gold creeping jenny and purple oxalis (the small pot has a clump of diamond frost euphorbia that will hopefully turn into a billowy mass of white flowers.  Now to find four additional planters to arrange around the deck's entrances, find plants to complement but not duplicate and of course, take care of all summer.

The sidewalk between the garage and deck is flanked with coral bells (technically Heuchera and some Tiarella, and maybe even a few X Heucherella tossed in for good measure), along with hostas, from tiny 'Kabitan' to tall blue 'Elegans' and a couple 'Guacamole' types that are large and getting larger, now in their third year in their new homes.  But once the coral bells are done blooming, the foliage gets a little boring (serenely so) and so I added some window boxes along the deck to introduce a little color on the way from the backyard to the deck.  This year's lineup includes a yellow/purple torenia, a purple-y calibrachoa (theoretically both should trail over the edges), some purple heliotrope in the middle for good smells, lobelia to fill in all the rest.  Looks like my cocoa fiber cutting needs a little fine tuning.

As I was snapping pictures, I realized a Clematis I planted (and forgot about) finally scrambled up the arbor on its own and is swathed in flowers right now.  I fed it this spring when I was weeding and mulching the bed so hopefully it will continue to grow and develop a nice sturdy root system - maybe next year's blooms will cover the entire arbor!  For now it does add a nice punch of color if you approach the yard from the side.  The oakleaf hydrangea is almost ready to let loose with her annual display of blooms. (Then it will be time to tame the beast once again...she quickly gets 8-10 feet tall and wide if I don't take the pruning saw and loppers to her annually.)

Last week's menu was in an uproar...again.  One of these days life will settle back down (no need for a laugh track there...I know that's worth a chuckle from those who know me.)  But I am eager to use the revamped grill this week, so I'll see what I can find for some innovative new meat or veggie flavor pairings and update the chalkboard with something more than a wish list.

In the meantime, I have a big dog/little dog picture I snapped last week when Scadie came to spend the day with us.  When it was her feeding time, I figured I better give Spice a little food as well, just to prevent an outbreak of WWIII in my kitchen.    I figure I should probably take pictures regularly...otherwise she'll soon be out of the puppy stage and growing into those massive paws of hers. A better shot would have been when I took them both for a walk, although I would have needed a third hand to hold the camera, since they don't walk at exactly the same pace.  I hope this Sunday afternoon finds all our family and friends enjoying a  peaceful day that God has made, whether the sun is shining or the rain is replenishing the land where you live.  And if you have any inspired ideas for container pairings, please drop me a note.  With four to fill, my biggest fear is that they all start to look identical, or they clash hideously.