Thursday, February 28, 2013

Calamondin Tree

Have you ever heard of a Calamondin?? I definitely hadn't but was immediately smitten with the gorgeous foliage and striped fruit when I found it at the nursery this past weekend. It called out to me and I had to take it and give it a home.

Fortunately, the fruit is still not it gives me time to research recipes that use this tiny tart citrus.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Spanish Blue Sedum

I love moss...but since succulents grow so darn well here in California, I decided to plant "Spanish Blue Sedum" in between the slate stone path that meanders through my garden.

It will probably take a long time to fill in...but hopefully it's lovely and lush soon.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Garden Snapshot

I spent a lot of time in my little garden this past weekend. The weather was gorgeous (60-70 degrees and sunny) and perfect to spend outdoors.

I acquired some new plants (a couple of citrus trees, blueberry bushes, a quince tree and strawberries)! I was quite the busy bee. 

You can see that I've planted the little strawberry plants in the cinder block holes that surround what will be a raised bed--once I add dirt. You can also see my new dwarf Meyer Lemon tree on the left. It's in bloom and smells heavenly!

Here is the "overall" shot of the garden as of February 23, 2013. I will be regularly updating with this vantage point in order to record the growth throughout the seasons. You can see what it looked like when I started here

I am very pleased to report that my passionfruit vine is looking better and better everyday. Thank God I didn't send it to an early grave with the under-watering in the beginning. I'm now very diligent with watering all of my little plants.

Also, I have more sprouts!! I can't tell you how thrilled I was to see the Nasturiums pop up yesterday when I was watering. I've noticed though that a few of the tender leaves have been snapped off! I blame the birds...
If it continues to be a problem I'm going to have to figure out a solution. Maybe adding little cloches until they're bigger would help.

All of the other little seedlings (which I am now almost 100% certain are poppies), are doing well and going strong. They're still teensy tiny but growing in numbers daily--which is so cool.


Saturday, February 23, 2013


A few weeks ago...these little grassy onion like things started popping up in the front rose bed. Thinking they were weeds, I pulled a bit on them...but the buggers were really tight in the ground.

I thought...maybe they're wild onions and tried digging a few up. While they certainly looked like onions, they sure didn't smell like them so I knew that I had something entirely different on my hands.

Once I saw this little wisp of yellow...I was so excited! Daffodils!!!
I love that these little gems required no effort and were such a lovely surprise. Now, I just need to figure out how to keep care of them!

Also...a few little seedings (or weeds with my luck) started peeking through the dirt in the first area that I scattered seeds (on 2/5/13). There are so many that look the same that I'm very hopeful that they are indeed my Shirley poppies!

They're so teensy tiny, I circled them for you. Will keep you posted....


Friday, February 22, 2013

Oranges for Everyone!

The other day, our neighbor John recommended I lean over our fence and take some of the oranges from his tree (there are tons). I thanked him and told him I would take him up on the offer closer to the weekend, when I could actually do something with the bounty. Now come the question...what to do?
I'm thinking tea or possibly flavored salts.

It's so fun to see that the tree is already coming back to bloom while the ripe fruit awaits picking!


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Spring Blooming Branches

All winter long, this little stick of a tree at the end of our driveway has been leafless and bare. Of course, I figured that come spring, it would once again get leaves but imagine my surprise this weekend when I found these gorgeous buds flowering! I can't wait for it to be in full bloom.

I'm not sure what type of tree this is since it was inherited with the so lovely though!
Anyone have any idea what my blooms might be?


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Friends in the Garden

I've spent a good deal of time this week/weekend in the garden. While there isn't much growing (yet) it's still quite a lovely place to be.

As I've spent more time sitting outside, I've noticed just how many different birds there are singing & dawdling around the garden. The one that's really caught by heart though is the hummingbird.  There are at least two (I've seen them together) and they are colored differently. Perhaps they are friends...or mates?

This little guy was enjoying my lavender topiary this morning. He only stayed around long enough for one quick shot.

My garden all started in early January with a Passion fruit vine (Passiflora edulis "Nancy Garrison").  I do not have much of a green thumb (although I am working hard to train it in that direction), so after being in the ground for a week or two it was starting to look kind of rough. 

I thought it was maybe the cold snap we had...or that something was attacking its roots. I was a worried plant mama.

One day, Emma (my business partner), came by the house and took a look at the vine. She said that all she thought that it needed was a long soak with the hose. We immediately turned on the faucet and let it get a nice long drink.

Ever since, I've been giving my vine lots of water. I also added a bit of fertilizer and organic mulch so that it would stay moist longer.

Overall, it still looks a bit scraggly but there are signs of new life on the vine. Little leaves are sprouting out in many places...promises of future growth!

I look forward to the day that this vine has so much growth that it covers our ugly fence. Until then, I will take the small victories and try to keep it alive.

The seeds that I ordered online (all but one) came this week in the mail!! I'm trying my hand at lots of varieties of poppies, as well as some other beautiful varieties. From my research, I learned that you want to scatter poppy seeds early in the season (or even the previous fall) in order for them to germinate. They don't like to be transplanted or grown in this seemed like the only option.

I prioritized my poppy plantings first so that I could get them off and running. My first batch was planted on 2/5/13, so 5 days ago. It will be interesting to see when & if they sprout. My worst fear is that nothing happens or that birds have eaten all of my seeds (since you don't sow them but on the surface, they are susceptible to that). Only time will tell.

So far, I've managed to plant up about 1/3 of my "little garden" (the one behind the garage). You can see above that I've staked off where I've sprinkled seeds so that I can keep track and not over plant ( if--with my luck, nothing will grow). I like that there are a few plants anchoring the bed (so far 2 scented geranium and 1 current bush). 

The other project I took on this weekend was setting up a raised bed. I will be sure to share images as I have them. I really think that it helps define the space & will be good since there is a weird, huge root running through that side of the bed.

I am excited to also try experimenting with propagating in the future (geraniums, lavender, succulents, my current bush)! Who doesn't like free plants?

Speaking of free plants, I am very lucky to have inherited this Yellow Jessamine vine with the house. It really wasn't anything at all to look at a month or so ago but has recently bursted into color. It also smells divine, sort of like jasmine but different.

The hummingbirds love this bad boy too! The blooms are fairly small but there are so many on each branch, the whole thing looks canary yellow from a distance.

That's my snapshot of the progress so far here. I welcome any suggestions or tips that you may have for my little outdoor space.
Wishing you a wonderful week!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Garden Snapshot

I figure that since I've currently been placed in beautiful Pasadena, I should embrace it and build a garden. I'll admit to not having a great track record with plants...but I blame it on the Texas heat (but it was mostly laziness on my part). 

The photos above show my progress from before we moved in (Sept. 2012) and when I first cleaned up the space a little (Jan. 4, 2013). I was honestly shocked to see the state of the space when we first arrived. I almost forgot how barren it was.

 This past weekend, I decided to put in a stone path so that I could make a good outline & plan for how to plant the space. I also added in 2 scented geranium have I never recognized the awesomeness of these before?? They smell amazing. One is lemon & one apple. I can't wait to see what other varieties the nursery receives in the coming months.

I also moved all of our outdoor furniture into our "little private garden" (the space behind our garage).

I also groomed this little lavender plant (Lavandula Spanish Pink) into a tabletop topiary. I love it...and I love the little green patterned pot.

While I was shoveling dirt, I came across some really interesting iron brackets, stakes & other pieces. It makes me wonder what was here before the house...

All sorts of critters enjoy the outside space as much as we do! I couldn't resist sharing a snapshot of this little guy who posed while I was pruning the rose bushes.

Wishing everyone a wonderful week! I look forward to sharing more of my progress as I go & spring arrives.