From our leaf tours:
It is the Solstice, Blessed Be. As they days grow slowly longer, may we also grow to love one another and to learn to live in peace. Holi...
Images of my container garden.
Belated Happy St. Patrick's Day. I have been too sick to enjoy one of my favorite holidays. I didn't even get corned beef, or to w...
Happy Halloween; it is my favorite night of the year! We were low key this year, but we did get out our graveyards and pumpkins. A scarecr...
Memoir; Writing your Life Story: Solstice, also for Dr. E's Greening Tips for the C... : It is the Solstice; Blessed Be! I look forwar...
Look closely at how delicate I am. I am probably a may fly, but I am as detailed as the scarabs from an Egyptian royal tomb. No one a...
Proclamation of Thanksgiving Washington, D.C. October 3, 1863 This is the proclamation which set the precedent for America's national...
Fresh Greek Peasant Salad This is the salad I grew up with; it was our late night snack and early lunch. This one has home grown t...
Pasta with Mushroom Veloute Sauce, garnished with Hard Boiled Eggs One lb. pasta 2 hardboiled eggs One 6 ounce can cream of chicken sou...
- I (1)
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Miss Charlotte Bronte meets Miss Barbara Pym: Maya Angelou,: We salute another excellent woman, Maya Angelou, and mourn her passing. I studied many a work by her, and consider her a compatriot, Eonia ...
Monday, May 19, 2014
Read for Annual River fest, and I note, the Bible verses in church yesterday were all about analogies to water, with allusions towards conservation, more later. Sister Waters Sister waters, Running deep, running angry, Running still, but Running empty never. Muse’s names long and short, Wapsipinicon, Rock, Green, Mississippi, Illinois, Sylvan slough, Home of fey, Muddy waters, Black water, Sisters who race to us, And in their haste to embrace us, Flood our shores like the Nile. Wonder you have time for us at all, You trek to the sea, to Mother Ocean, You love us all only in passing, We, your sisters, take our Life from you; Without you we are gone, Dried, dead cat tails in A Cold, cold Autumn. You give us life, and leisure, You give us passage connect us, Your mortal siblings, You travel far, you are passionate, And there are days when your rapids and currents Fight over us, and claim some of us, Wider than some seas, no mere lakes for Weekend boaters, You ferry us, protects us, sustain us Travel us, Till the end of the voyage, Till all your tributaries lead not to The sea, But to another river, Styx.
Thursday, May 15, 2014
Tuesday, there was a wild turkey in my parents' back yard, just sauntering along the ravine, actually quite cute. Yesterday, something tiny flashed in front of my car towards the curb. I slowed down, and had a stare down with a very tiny baby rabbit, only about 5 inches long, as tiny as you could be and still hop. Also at my parents, a gray rabbit and a black rabbit and a black squirrel engage in public squabbling, over what, no one knows. Winter has ous somewhat in its icy grip again,and it seems our Snow Queen does not want to melt. It may be 30-something tomorrow night, with other parts of the country getting 5 inches and mroe of snow. Endless winter . . . .
Sunday, May 11, 2014
Please see below; these are very good for anyone with gall bladder or peptic ulcer issues, and they are a fruit high in all sorts of nutrients. How to Grow Avocados in your Garden or Container By Laurelynn Martin and Byron Martin Avocado 'Day' Avocados are considered one of the healthiest and tastiest fruits on the planet. Its rich, creamy inside is filled with nutrition and flavor and growing your own avocados is a fun adventure for the gardener. Avocado (Persea americana) is a native fruiting tree of Mexico and Central America. Avocado fruit varies in weight from 4 ounces to more than 5 pounds depending on variety. In The Garden When left on their own, avocados can grow upwards of 20' tall. Judicious pruning can restrict the height significantly and this is often done in commercial plantings for ease of harvest and spraying. In a Container As a container plant, the height of the avocado tree is restricted by the size of the container as well as pruning. The cycle of growth begins in winter to early spring with the expanding and opening of flower buds. In greenhouse culture in the north, this starts before the end of December and continues until late winter or early spring depending on the variety. Flowering Time Avocado Flower Flowering time is related to growing temperatures and day length. Grafted varieties flower quickly, usually the first year. These young plants, however, aren't mature enough to fruit and the flowers will fall off. This happens until the plant is large enough to bear fruit. Fruiting an Avocado As container plants, trees need to get to 6-8' tall with a trunk caliber of 1.5"- 2" before they will set fruit. This requires a large, 24" pot (15 to 25 gallon). It takes a few years for young grafted plants to reach this size. Putting on Growth Once the flowering cycle is finished, plants return to vegetative growth over the spring and summer months. Healthy plants, even in pots, can put on 2' or more on the strong upright branches. During the mid to late summer's growth, the plant will form flower buds, and although they are not visible, they swell as the fall and winter season approaches, and the cycle begins over again. Pruning Pruning right after the flowering cycle is complete will give the least disruption to the flower bud formation. Generally, plants are headed back at this time making strategic cuts that lessen the height and width but trying not to disturb the shorter lateral braches where much of the flowers and the fruit will form. What type of Container is Best Terracotta containers are porous and allow the roots to have better aeration. This causes the soil to dry quicker thus reducing potential pathogens. Plastic pots can be used as long as a highly drained potting media is used. You can increase soil drainage by adding more perlite or sand to the mix. How to Fertilize Liquid Fertilizer In containers, avocados are moderate feeders. It is best to use a balanced fertilizer with a slightly elevated middle number (phosphate) like 7-9-5. Feeding can be done through irrigation. When you water, add small amounts of liquid fertilizer once a week or every two weeks. Remember the more often you fertilize container grown avocado plants, you need to reduce the amount of fertilizer that's added to the water. For example, if you fertilize every week, add 1/4 tsp per gallon or if you fertilize every two weeks, add 1/2 tsp per gallon. Top Dress Fertilizer Another option is to use a slow release fertilizer that is sprinkled or top dressed on the surface of the soil. These typically last for 3-6 months and release fertilizer slowly into the pot. When using slow release fertilizer, don't top dress too late in the season so the fertilizer will taper off and the plant will have time to harden off before the onset of cold weather. Granular Organic Fertilizer You can also use a granular organic fertilizer which, like the slow release, is sprinkled on the soil surface and allowed to leach into the potting mix. Organic fertilizers generally have a slow release component to them and so only a couple applications are needed per season. Fertilizer Caution Like any plant, avocado plants can be over fertilized. This results in excessive lush leaf growth, burned foliage, and reduces fruiting potential, as well as aggravating the root disease issue. If you have used too much fertilizer, it is important to leach the fertilizer out of the soil by watering the plant continuously until you see water flowing out the bottom of the pot. Do this for several minutes. Sensitive Root System One of the problems with container grown avocado plants is root rot. As is the case with most root disease, the cold damp conditions of winter often initiate the problem. Be sure to keep the plant's root system warm during cooler temperatures. Once soil disease organisms affect the root system, it is very hard to return the plant to health. Manage Soil Moisture in Winter When growing plants that are going to winter over in a northern greenhouse, conservatory or sunroom, where the night temperatures are below 60˙F, it's important to manage the soil moisture accurately. Bring the potting media to almost dryness, and then thoroughly soak the soil. A little wilt is better than constant soil moisture. The organisms that cause the root collapse thrive in damp cool soil and don't proliferate under dry conditions. Pests for Potted Avocados In northern climate culture, few insects bother the plants with the exception of mealy bugs and they are generally not much of an issue. Insects to Look for if Avocados are Grown in the Garden In areas where avocados are grown outside year-round, there are different pests that do affect the plants; some of which are mites, thrip and fungi. If you live in an avocado growing area, it is best to check with your local agricultural extension agent for pest problems and recommended controls in your area. To see our 'Day' Avocado and other tropical fruiting plants for the home garden, click here.
Happy Mother's Day to mothers everywhere! Lots of good green trivia and healthy living ideas in this month's "Reader's Digest!" Also, here are some recipes I wasn't able to post earlier this week: Vegetable broth with tricolored tortellini 1 pckg. tri colored tortellini from the fresh pasta section, or dried pasta you can cook longer 1 8 oz package mushrooms, fresh. 1/2 onion, chopped, any kind 1 stalk fresh celery, chopped 2 cubes chicken bouillon Salt to taste Boil all ingredients together until the mushrooms are cooked. You could start boiling the vegetables and add the pasta and a good drop of olive oil after a couple of minutes. Serves three, very healthy and flavorful vegetable broth. You can add other vegetables, and meet, if so desired. "Funny Brownies" with fresh Chocolate Mint 1 fresh chocolate mint plant 1 package brownie mix, any kind, make as directed with three eggs to make cake like 1/2 dried cranberries Russell Stover chocolate truffle Easter eggs, chopped, or other chocolate truffle candies chopped Mix brownies, and add all other ingredients, follow directions, bake and cool as directed. I also like to make the brownies from scratch using Dianne Mott Davidson's "Scout's Brownies" recipe from "Dying for Chocolate."
Thursday, May 1, 2014
Dr. E's Doll Museum Blog: Exploring a Favorite Flea Market: Review: Eagle Estate Brokers [EEB] Flea Market The Bottom Line: EEP opens the last Friday/Saturday of each month, and on special occasions...