Spot of Gardening

Gardening in South Louisiana

A Visit to the Dallas Arboreteum

While attending my lil’ sis’s baby shower two weeks ago, I went to visit the Dallas Arboreteum. They grow a wide range of plants that suit the dry hot Texas weather. My favorite was the flower house displays they were spotlighting for the summer. They were small houses with walls of hanging planters of vincas and begonias. They were pretty and I’d like to take the idea of a wall of planters and do something similiar in my garden. Hmmmm…. food for thought.  Anyways, I have some photos of my lil’ sis’s baby shower display (which are not garden related but nice anyways) and some flower houses and a Japanese Windflower (it’s a beautiful mint green flower!)

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May 31, 2010 Posted by | Family & Friends, Flowers | Leave a comment

Blooming Pomegranate

My pomegranate tree is blooming.  I wasn’t sure it would since I moved it from the side of the house to the pond in March.  I needed something to replace the papaya tree next to pond.   The Sushiman didn’t want to put another papaya tree there since it was so difficult to keep covering it every winter.   I guess this spot is perfect for the pomegranate since it is happily growing there.  For those who are interested in such things, the cultivar is Wonderful.   The blooms are a beautiful crimson color, which my camera doesn’t quite catch properly.   It looks more orange than red in the pictures.  This shrub is drought- tolerant which is perfect when summer comes around.  I feel that this summer is going to be a scorcher.  Temps are already in the 90s and it’s only May.   Meanwhile, I think I’ll enjoy the heat after such a cold winter.

May 13, 2010 Posted by | Flowers, Fruits and Vegetables | | 2 Comments

Cilantro Flowers to Coriander Seeds

Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum) is a funny plant.   The plant itself is called cilantro but it’s seeds are called coriander.  This annual herb grows best in cool spring weather around 50s and 60s.   When temps reach the 70s, cilantro tends to start to go to seed.   I love to use the leaves for cooking and garnishing.  Lately, I have been using fresh coriander seeds as a garnish for various dishes.  The seeds have a fresh herby taste vs. the nutty taste of dried coriander.  Many trendy gourmet restaurants have added fresh coriander seeds to their dishes as a garnish, also.   It’s a bit tedious to pick out the seeds one by one but worthwhile for the final dish.  The flowers are also edible.

May 10, 2010 Posted by | Flowers, Herbs | Leave a comment

Happy Mother’s Day

On Mother’s Day, we show our appreciation for mothers everywhere, especially our own.  Since my mom went to Houston where my sibs will take my mother out and make sure my mom feels appreciated, the Sushiman and I are spending our Sunday with the Sushiman’s mom.   I made a cake with whipped cream frosting and fresh fruits for the Sushiman’s mom.  Unfortunately, the fruits are all store-bought except for the wild blackberries when I went berry picking.

For my own mom and mothers everywhere,  Have a happy and blessed Mother’s Day!

May 9, 2010 Posted by | Cooking, Family & Friends, Fruits and Vegetables | 1 Comment

My New Back Porch

On our third year in our home, we have finally started to build our back porch!  I would have preferred to have the builder put the porch on when we first had the house built but they wouldn’t build it the way we wanted it.  Well, we decided that we would have it done later.  And two years went by…

Now, my dad is helping us build it ourselves.  It’s going to be a two phase project.  This first area will be our outdoor kitchen area.   The south wall is a double glass window that The Sushiman insists is perfect to block the wind from the cooking area.  We’ve decided to cover the outside with lattice and put a garden box underneath so I can plant some climbing vines to grow up along our south wall.  I already have some hardy kiwis which would be perfect there.

May 8, 2010 Posted by | Family & Friends | 2 Comments

Tumbler Tomato Harvest

The Tumbler tomatoes have been a very successful experiment this year.  I have never grown this type of cherry tomato before.  Well, this will be a tomato that I will add to my garden from now on.  It’s easy to grow and takes very little space since it’s in a hanging basket.  Visually, it’s stunning with dozens of cute little round tomatoes hanging off the branches.  The fruit looks very uniform and smooth just like the ones you buy at the store.  My MIL loves harvesting from the tomato basket every morning.

May 7, 2010 Posted by | Fruits and Vegetables | , , , | Leave a comment

Pink Hearts, Azaleas & Roses

In the front of the house, the heart flowerbed is beginning to look about how I imagined it when I first planted it.  The pink azaleas are in full bloom with pink roses rising above it.  My azaleas are a full two weeks behind the other azaleas in the area.  When the azaleas around town have already faded, my azaleas have started to bloom.  Talk about late bloomers.  LOL.  By next year, those ugly cable and electric boxes will be completely covered and I’ll have a beautiful pink heart flowerbed for viewing instead.  Yay!  I still have one corner of the flowerbed to plant something in to finish off the flowerbed.  Something pink of course.  Originally, I had a huge pink geranium but looks like it didn’t survive this winter.  I’m considering another geranium.  Maybe, I’ll find the perfect plant next week at the Mother’s Day Plant Sale at the Burden Center.   That will be the reason I have to go to the plant sale, not that I’ve turned into an obsessive gardener who fervently looks forward to the flower and plant shows and marks it on her calendar so she won’t miss it.  No, No, that’s not me…..

May 6, 2010 Posted by | Flowers | , | 2 Comments

Running With the Turtle

The larger turtles seem to prefer The Kitchen Garden as a home instead of The Pond.  Earlier this spring, we found several of them half buried in the garden while preparing the garden beds.  Since I needed the space for my vegetables, I moved them back to the pond.   The small turtles seem happy to continue to live in the pond but the larger ones keep returning to the garden.  As you can see, they keep making a run across the backyard to the kitchen garden.   Lucky enjoys racing around them when he finds them.  Obviously, he’s never heard of the tortoise and the hare tale.

May 3, 2010 Posted by | Animals & Pets | 4 Comments

Lil’ Peaches

It seems like it was just yesterday I was admiring my peach blossoms.  Now, dozens of little peaches are hanging on the dwarf peach tree in the container.  I should thin the peaches to get larger fruits but I can’t bring myself to pluck these cute little peaches off while they’re still green.  Well, it’s not like I was growing a dwarf peach tree for the fruit anyways.  Yep, it was for the ornamental value…….

May 1, 2010 Posted by | Fruits and Vegetables | Leave a comment