Thursday, January 13, 2011


I read an article this morning that said 49 of the states currently had snow on the ground. Looks like we are all in this together for the time being. My 7 year told me her favorite thing in the world is playing in the snow at recess. One of my favorite things is curling up under the covers and reading a nice bedtime story. Here is a new favorite, by one of my favorite authors, celebrating snow.

by Cynthia Rylant
illustrated by Lauren Stringer

Together Rylant and Stringer have made a beautiful book that just gets better with each turn of the page. my daughter and I found ourselves lingering on each page, noticing the details, repeating the prose. Rylant shows us the day of a girl and her Grandmother, and sweetly describes the different types of snow. In the end Rylant tells us that "nothing lasts forever except memories" and reminds us we must enjoy it while it is here.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

My New Favorite Tomato

I've fallen for this beautiful variety of tomato called Pineapple. It is a yellow beefsteak type that has delicate shades of red running through it. The bush loads itself with so many of this big beauties that it's a wonder it can hold itself up.

Had to show you the inside- how pretty each slice is. And the flavor? Absolutely delicious, mild and meaty. I'll be keeping the seeds from these for next year so I can have more than one plant. Although seriously , one may be all you need!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

My Pepper Plantation

This week has been a great week for harvesting our bumper crop of peppers at the community garden. The peppers are big and meaty and abundant!

Orange bell peppers, just starting to ripen.

These long thin peppers are super hot. They turn red when ripe, making it such a pretty plant.

A shorter hot pepper. This bush is so pretty with the varying shades of red.

The hunt for big ones.

Success! This one is a keeper!

These will ripen yellow.

Bull's Tongue, ripens red. A big beautiful stuffing or canning variety. A little bitter raw.

Sweet Cherry Peppers

The happy harvest ready to take home.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Chinese Red Noodle Bean

A new addition to my beans this year is the Chinese Red Noodle Bean from the Bakers Creek Seed catalog. They are really an interesting plant. For most of the summer they sat at the bottom or the trellis with only a couple inches growth.

Just at the moment I had given up on them they sprang to the top of the trellis and produced some interesting flowers .They either resemble an alien or an angel, not sure which.
Then, magically , the red beans appear, looking like a cascade of fireworks.

I picked one off and tried it right off the and it was good! (and almost a meal in itself.)
I gathered the longest ones and brought them inside. I knew I was going to blow the kids mind with these babies. What was their reaction? Nothing, nada, zilch- not even the usual eye roll.

Whatever, I'm a dork I know. But these are really cool beans.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Tennessee Spinning Gourds

Every spring my husband and I get into an argument about the gourds I'm planning to grow in the garden. He thinks gourds are utterly useless and take up too much valuable space that could be put to better use. I , on the other hand, keep expanding my selections of gourds each year and stick them wherever I find an empty spot. This year I've found a new favorite. The Tennessee Spinning Gourd, or Dancing Gourd as it is sometimes called.

The leaves are a brilliant shade of green and have a nice size and shape to them.

The gourd themselves are about two inches long with pretty green stripes.

The vine has neat fairy tale- like tendrils all over it that adds interest to this lovely vine.

Here is one that is just starting to form.

The gourd can be used as a top when turned over and spun on it's skinny end. They also are a nice size to paint and use as jewelry.

The little gourds are prolific. I have one plant growing out of a big pot in my kitchen garden and it already has about a dozen spinners on it.

As you can see I've totally flipped for this beauty!

I just can't stop taking pictures of it.

Even the dog likes it!

Monday, June 15, 2009

A Garden Visitor.....

Look what we found in the garden this morning!
A huge snapping turtle nestled in among the peppers.

At first we thought she dropped by for a bite to eat.

Upon closer inspection we found the real reason for her visit! A new egg to research!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Cup and Saucer Canterbury Bells

Campanula medium (Bellflower)
These are biennial. They flower the second year . A great lesson in garden patience!

These were on of the first flowers imported to America in colonial times. Thomas Jefferson kept them in his garden at Monticello. ( just some nerdy garden info for you.)

In this picture you can see how the bottom petals flair out to form a saucer.
My girls started these from seem last year. From a packet of seed we ended up with 3 big beautiful blooming plants this year.