Sunday, June 27, 2010

The New Landscape

So, I won't digress with all the before and after photos yet...however, I must tell you I've accumulated quite a selection of plants for the 3 new beds going in with construction beginning next Saturday. I'll upload before photos this week--I promise!! However, this is a list of the plants planned so far for the 3 beds and some snapshots...let me tell you--for the ones sitting in the flower beds--I wished my flower bed they are sitting in really looked like this. Hopefully, it will within a couple of years.

So, first, I've found a nursery: Colorfield Farms in Wimauma, FL, a nice short drive from Kerry's house. And this is what I found there. I must say that Kerry has talked me into going back and getting a mango tree.

Sun coleus assorted 10
Small zinnias assorted 5
Cannas 1 red, 1 yellow
Mint pink blooming kind 2
Thryalis 2
Cupheas—2 each of 3 different kinds
Gaura—4 white and 4 short red tipped pink
Verbena—2 red, 1 dark purple
Firebush 3
Porterweed 2
Mexican sage 2 red
Coneflowers 3
Black eyed susan 3
Pentas 3 white, 3 red
Lantana 2 white
Butterfly milkweed—4 yellow, 5 multi
Lavendar English like my old one at Mom’s
Big tall begonia
Falmingo plume flower
Epidendrum orchid
2 tall purple flowers (don’t know the name)

As if that's not enough...we found out Friday that the leaky p-trap we thought we had in the guest bathroom was really a we had to replace the faucets. Ok, that's a post for another day, but you can probably imagine that my trip to Home Depot was like telling a gambling addict to go in a casino and buy a meal but not gamble. Yeah, right! So, here's the damage done there:

6 thyme
2 cillantro
Purple coneflower 3
Firebush 4
Variegated flax lily 4
purple fountain grass 2
white fountain grass 2
st bernard’s lily 4
4 orange bulbine
Pink gaura 6
3 lavendar lantana, 1 white lantana
3 false spirea

Well, I hope you're as anxious and excited as I am. They rip out the sod next Saturday, and I am just itching to start plopping these plants in the ground. Might I also add that we've had butterflies, but since I've brought these flowers home, they've really flocked in and some I've never seen before. This is going to be awesome!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Beautiful Orchids

I cannot believe I have let my blog fall wayside. I don't even have time to read the blogs I love so dearly anymore. I know I keep saying this, but I've decided to re-do my blog design and begin to post again. I created this blog on a whim and didn't really have the blog "design" concept in my head good enough to make one that people will want to read, so after learning a few new tricks, and deciding what the main themes to my posts will be, I am ready...but won't have the new blog up and going until August 25. I still have a few big projects to complete...

For now, I want to share with you my spring surprises. I got my first orchid as a Valentine's Day gift from BB in 2004. I had never before had the right light to grow orchids until I moved into my little apartment--which I adored. It was a beautiful fuschia pink. That was in Knoxville where you had to grow orchids inside; they couldn't handle the winters.

Then in August 2005, I said goodbye to Knoxville and all its beauty sitting in the valley of the Appalachian Mountains and moved to Ft. Benning, GA. I was very reluctant to move to Ft. Benning...not reluctant, I was thrilled. BB and I had been back together for about a year and a half. We were newly weds of 1 year and we hadn't even lived together yet. So, yes, the move was wonderful, but I loved my Smoky Mountains and the life I had in Knoxville, so I was very sad to go. I had wonderful friends, a beautiful playground to romp in on the weekends, and a very nice campus to call work--which I miss very much still.

Well, with this move went all my potted plants. Now, I left Mississippi in 2001, and a whole host of plants went with me when I did. I know I have at least one that left with me then, survived Knoxville, and made the trip down to Ft. Benning, GA. I leave plants every where I go. Now that I really think back, there are plants that I've brought and left part of behind in every home I've ever lived: little shack in Iuka ext to Mrs. Fredericks, House on the hill in Corryton, TN, apartment complex (yes on the ground floor outside the little patio) in Knoxville, TN, Ft. Benning, GA, and here. Well, those are stories for later, I suppose.

Ft. Benning was wonderful. The winters were much milder. We had our cold days, but not nearly as long and as many as in Knoxville. It was that I could grow tropicals out on the screened in front porch even in the winter. Wonderful! I accumulated many orchids while there. They would grow outside in the summer, and in the house in our bedroom with tons of windows in the winter. They did well, but they didn't bloom often, and when they did, they would only last for a couple of weeks, and not all at the same time either. I fed them and they were beautiful plants but with no blooms most of the time.

Carefully, I transported the largest covered pull trailer you can get from U-Haul full of plants to our new home in Riverview, FL May 2008. (That's a lot of plants to relocate in a 300 mile move.) I'm like that though--moves, I'm known for heavy furniture, stone, and plants. Well? Everyone has something they love. In the vehicles, came 18 orchids.

First, they lived out in the yard on the ground; then they moved to the trees. Then winter came and they moved to the lanai. Then they moved back out in the trees in the spring where they lived until last November or December. Again, back to the lanai; indoors only very few nights this past winter, but that's supposed to even be unusual. Since then, they've been on the lanai, with about 15 added to the collection. I believe actually a few more, but am not sure. So, in March they began putting on buds. This lasted for awhile, each one slowing showing up with buds. I guessed they would bloom here and there. One yellow one began to show its beauty.

Then other began to pop out...well, take a look for yourself. I'm quite happy. And as sad as I am, my dear brother whose lived here all his life is moving to California, and has willed me to be the caretaker of his orchids. They are pretty amazing. They make mine look small, but to have them altogether will be pretty spectacular.

Enjoy the show...