From My Carolina Home

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Karesansui teien

I have been planning for some time to do a series of posts inspired by Japanese influence.  I hope you’ll enjoy these posts, with interesting facts, fun projects, and even a couple of giveaways later this month.  These posts will be sprinkled around  other post subjects over the next month or so, with gardens, sewing projects, a quilt design, recipes and more, all inspired by Japanese culture.  Today we’ll go back to Cheekwood Gardens in Nashville for a visit to the lovely Japanese garden there.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Japanese gardens have some common elements, one being the art of building anticipation as you walk toward the garden.  This is achieved by creating curves in the path, or an elevation change to hide the destination and build up expectation.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Karesansui teien is the Japanese phrase for depicting a pond with sand or gravel.  A glimpse of the dry pond is seen from the path.  Building anticipation with just a partial view is called miegakure.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

The path curves again, and over a small rise in elevation, another glimpse of the garden yet to come.  The stone object on the left is placed in the tradition of catching your attention with a jinriki, a man made object, as a means to mark a place to stop and observe.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

This was the first marker that gave an overview of what was to come.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Stone lanterns called Oribe Lanterns, named for a 16th century warlord and tea ceremony master responsible for designing stone lanterns for gardens.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Japanese garden, only a few man-made objects are placed, and only to draw attention to a view or a feature.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

This lantern draws attention to the entrance to the pavilion.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

The marker describes the Shõmu-en style garden, meant to be viewed from only one place.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Notice the play of light and shadow, that will change as the day advances.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

A pattern of ‘ripples’ is raked into the gravel around the stones called aranami-mon with straight line patterns in a checkerboard called ichimatsu-mon.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

It is a quiet, contemplative place.  Note the stone wall on the right outside the pavilion, meant to hide the garden from view from the pathway.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Visiting in a colder month, some of the deciduous trees had lost their leaves, and the beauty of their forms could be appreciated.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

One last look at the garden, with the stones along the edge.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Leaving the pavilion, a bamboo grove lines the pathway.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Carefully placed stepping stones define the path.  An Oribe Lantern is a stone lantern placed in the garden to mark a place to stop and observe.

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

Japanese gardens are designed to make the observer slow down, contemplate the surroundings, calm the mind.  To appreciate the beauty of simple things, see each element on its own  and as a part of the whole.  I think it is this more than anything that draws me to this style, appreciating the little things, observing the beauty all around us.  Konnichiwa! (good day!)

At home, it is the ideal time for planting seed beds now, and I got busy on that project this week too.  The red amaryllis doesn’t look like it will bloom this year, so I may repot it when the weather gets warmer.  The hyacinth bulb gave me a small flower spike, in my favorite white.  It had such a lovely fragrance.  Other than that, not much going on in my garden yet.

Do you enjoy Japanese gardens?

Cheekwood Japanese Garden at From My Carolina Home

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January In the Garden 2018

For those of us who enjoy digging in the dirt, the cold part of winter is a time for planning. It is a time of thinking about what I’d like to grow in the veggie garden this year, and looking for some new flowers for the perennial beds. Long time readers may recognize this silver pot with the large bulb as my red amaryllis. It is coming up again, for the fifth year! I’ve never had one live this long, and I am excited to see if it blooms again.

Amaryllis Year 5 at From My Carolina Home

A couple of weeks later, and it is growing nicely, still no flower spike yet.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A gift from a friend over the holidays, I now have a rosemary plant. I have never had much luck with these, so I’ll be carefully tending it over the winter then planting it outside next spring.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Caring for the plants brought inside is a bit of a challenge as we get so very little sunlight actually coming in the windows, only a sliver is available in the mornings. The entire front of our home is glass, but the large verandah overhang limits the direct sunlight except in winter when the sun is lower to the south. Pulling back the curtain early and rotating the plants that get the direct light through the window is a daily chore. Today, the white amaryllis, my rosemary plant, a succulent and a bulb get the light for about an hour.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There aren’t many chores for January, especially when it is so bloody cold. It is a great time to sit in front of the fireplace and look at gardening books and magazines, read the Farmer’s Almanac, peruse the seed catalogs, and dream.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This book, Nature Notes of an Edwardian Lady, was a Christmas gift from DH.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

It is a totally charming book of poetry and art by Edith Holden. It is divided into chapters by month, and is just enchanting.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

It is available at my Amazon link – Nature Notes of an Edwardian Lady.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Before the new year, the turkeys came back for a short visit. I noticed them in the lower meadow, and stepped outside with some bread for them. They came running and I had to move fast to get a pic of them coming. This small flock has seven females. At this point in time, I had not seen a male for quite some time.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Bites of bread were thrown in different directions to make sure everybody got a few. They came back one more day, and then apparently moved on.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Sunsets are sometimes really lovely, when the clouds are still drifting by. Even as cold as it has been, the valley views are spectacular.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This cold has brought the birds in large numbers to the feeders. DH is having to refill them almost every other day.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This larger woodpecker has figured out how to get some of the food, even though he is too big to get inside the cage.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A flock of about a dozen goldfinches is taking advantage of the bounty, sometimes all of them will be on the three feeders at once, but that has proved difficult to catch in pictures.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Some readers have asked about how I keep the squirrels out of the feeder, so here is the setup from a distance so you can see the whole thing. The top feeder is almost 9 feet off the ground, with the others hanging slightly below. The pole is far enough away from the house and the trees so the squirrels cannot jump to it. The baffle below is a tube baffle to prevent them from climbing up the pole.  We remove the lower feeder and the suet feeder in the warm months to keep the bears from getting them.  But they are hibernating now, so we can put more food out for the birds.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

It is available on Amazon – Audobon Torpedo Steel Squirrel Baffle.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The female cardinal is coming regularly, she doesn’t migrate so she depends on our feeder.  The male often comes by to eat too, and sometimes they come together.

January in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I have a head start on the veggies with the seeds saved from this year’s crops and meals. See how I saved seeds Here.  The Farmer’s Almanac says the best days to plant seeds for indoor head starts will be February 5-7, so I need to set aside some time then to get the grow lights cranked up and the potting soil ready.

November cards at From My Carolina Home

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A couple of days ago, this young male turkey paid us a visit.  He may have been here before, as he readily began to cluck-purr when he saw me come out with a bit of bread for him.  I am hoping that the flock will return soon.

Young Male Turkey at From My Carolina Home

Back inside, when I planted all the bulbs in October, I held out a hyacinth bulb to force indoors.  It has taken it forever to root, probably because it wasn’t chilled for forcing.  But it has finally made some long roots into the bulb vase, and is beginning to look like it is going to put up a flower.  There is a second little stem coming up from the bottom and side of the bulb, and I go back and forth as to whether or not to pinch that off.  On one hand, it might be taking energy away from the main bulb, but on the other hand, it might grow enough to create another separate bulb for planting.  Would you keep it?

January in the Garden at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

What is going on in your garden?  Gardens must be getting lovely for readers ‘down under’ in NSW, New Zealand, and Australia.  Are you in a planning mode?  When do you plan to start your seeds?

 


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A Year at From My Carolina Home, and a plan for next year

Are you a planner? I have to confess that I am not much of one anymore. After spending many years in the business world and the medical field, using complex planners to keep track of appointments, travel arrangements, goals and objectives, this is the last thing I want to do now. For me, quilting, cooking, gardening, reading, and blogging are fun and I do not want to turn it into goals and deadlines. But last year, I did just a short overall goal list as part of an linkup for the new year. Here’s the list from last year with links to the some of the posts and projects from this past year too, and an overall plan for 2018, subject to adjustment, LOL!!

My goals and progress  for 2017 were –

Goal 1 – Do a mystery quilt for 2017 – Scrap Dance Two Step done.  Photo above.

Goal 2 – Plan another event during the 2017 year with giveaways from my favorite sponsors for readers – this was encompassed into goal #5.

Goal 3 – Be a stop on a Christmas in July blog hop, not a 12 day event this year like I did in 2016 – done.

Cross Stitched Quilted Christmas Ornaments | From My Carolina Home

Goal 4 – Publish Scrap Dance Waltz – done, now on Craftsy.

Scrap Dance Waltz at From My Carolina Home

Goal 5 – Do another Autumn event, encompassing a wide variety of projects heavy on the quilting and sewing, with gardening, cooking, reading, crafting, card making, thrifting and recycling, and more thrown in for fun.  – done, Autumn Jubilee took the entire month of October in the second year of this event.

Autumn Jubilee at From My Carolina Home

There were prizes almost every single post which included a quilt-along free pattern for Stars on Autumn Lane, …

Stars on Autumn Lane Quilt Along for Autumn Jubilee ~ From My Carolina Home

sew along with a free pattern for this Tablet Cover, …

Tablet Cover Sew Along at From My Carolina Home

wool stitch along for the Pumpkins and Leaves Penny Rug, …

Wool Applique for Autumn Jubilee at From My Carolina Home

tablescapes, a new recipe for Mushroom Meatloaf, …

Mushroom Meatloaf at From My Carolina Home

stamping Thanksgiving Cards,…

Autumn Cards at From My Carolina Home

gardening with Saving Seeds and Crafting.

November cards at From My Carolina Home

For the coming year, I do have a few goals.  First, I want finish writing the the Scrap Dance Two-Step pattern, get the final testing done and publish the pattern.

In the middle of last year I decided to do a special charity event, with donations and cards made for the Safelight domestic violence shelter.  The response to The Safelight Project from readers was truly inspiring, and the bags we made together were so appreciated.  More cards and small gift bags were done for Christmas, you can see HERE.  I have an idea for a Summer Fun bag for this year’s project that will need Sunglasses cases made, if you can use up some scraps and sew a few.  If you are a card maker, I’ll need a lot of summer fun cards with inspirational messages inside.  More on this a bit later, as I am still in the process of working out some details.

Safelight Project at From My Carolina Home

There will be a new Scrap Dance mystery, and I am working on that design now.  I want to do something different each year, help us learn a new skill or way of doing elements like last year’s quarter-square triangles.   This next one will have something new too!  I have figured out how to do it easier than anything I found in online tutorials, and how to integrate it into a step process for the mystery.  I will promise that it will again be scrappy, as my thing is to use up the bits and pieces you have left over.  No cutting into new fabric with the anxiety of maybe not liking the end product.  After all, just using up scraps doesn’t require a huge commitment, and you can give it to charity if you end up wishing it was different.  This picture is the finish of Scrap Dance Tango from 2015, now available in my Craftsy store.  Links to the patterns are on my sidebar (smartphone users, scroll down past the comments to see the sidebar info and links).  I would like your input as to which day of the month you like best for the posts, last year it was the third Friday.

In February, I am planning to do several posts in an event that will be Japanese inspired.  I have been a bit obsessed with Japanese things lately – food, gardens, quilting and sewing, origami and more.   This beautiful meal was served to me at Sora’s in Pisgah Forest.  If you think you wouldn’t like sushi, know that there wasn’t anything raw in this one other than avocado.  I figured out that salad too, very different and delicious.

Japanese Food inspiration at From My Carolina Home

So I’ll be sharing some projects and recipes along with garden visits.  I have some beautiful Japanese print fabrics to play with, and several ideas on how to use them.

Japanese Fabrics at From My Carolina Home

Lastly, I hope to be able to do the third annual Autumn Jubilee.  I actually already have a couple of commitments for prizes for the event, now I just need to come up with three new designs (1 quilting, 1 sewing, 1 wool stitching), a new recipe and more crafting projects.  The Autumn Tablescapes are the easy part.

Autumn Tablescape at From My Carolina Home

I am joining the link up going on at Quilting Jetgirl’s 2018 Planning Party with some fun prizes to win. I am delighted to be a part of that, and will have two patterns to give away as part of Yvonne’s event.  Her link up is open for a few more days, and I have my eye on the Aurifil thread.  As much as I have been privileged to be a blog where Aurifil sponsors giveaways, I’ve never won any for myself.  I do buy a lot though, LOL!!!  Plus I’ll be linking with Cheryl’s Best of 2017 Linky.  Buttons on the sidebar.

Beyond that, we’ll see.  I promise to continue showing the variety of subjects you have come to know as part of my blog, quilting and sewing, free patterns and quilt alongs, tips and tutorials, travel and mountain living, crafting and stamping, cooking and gardening, tablescapes and decorating, reading and more.

Late July in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Won’t you come with me for fun next year at From My Carolina Home?  You can follow by email by using the sidebar sign up, or Bloglovin using the sidebar link.  If you are a Facebook user, follow From My Carolina Home Facebook page.  I like interacting with readers too, and you can put your pictures on our Flickr Group for the quilt alongs and projects, and on my new From My Carolina Home Project Sharing Facebook group too.  This new group is for anything and everything inspired by my posts, sharing of projects and quilt alongs, sew alongs and stitch alongs, your tablescapes and gardens, and any project inspired by my blog.

What day of the month would you like to see the steps for the Scrap Dance Mystery Quilt steps next year, for example third Friday, or another week and day, or a specific day like the 10th of each month no matter what day of the week it falls?

Are you a planner?  What are your goals for next year?

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October in the Garden and a Giveaway

Our weather has continued to be warm through most of the month, not really getting chilly at night until this past weekend. But I know that the garden is winding down, most of the flowers are done. It is time to prepare for some things to come indoors for the winter. One of the plants I want to keep over winter is this schefflera, and it was getting potbound. It was a gift, and I had not paid any attention to it other than to set it out on the veranda and water it. So it got a bigger pot.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

While it was still nice outside, I wanted to dig up more of the day lilies. I was going to a quilt retreat early in the month and wanted to give some away to friends. So I dug up two more big clumps, divided them, and put them in bags to take with me.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, the brick planter in the front looked like this last summer, full of two colors of day lilies. This was one end….

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

and this was the other.  Between these two clumps of day lilies were several purple iris plants.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

After I dug up the daylilies and the irises, I planted two perennials on one end. They are miniature asters. I haven’t had these before so will see how they do.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I got them on the bargain shelf at the garden center for 50 cents each.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I also needed to make room for these, a bag of irises. They were picked up from a gardener friend who got three times this amount on a free giveaway. I don’t know what color they are. With my luck, they will be purple, LOL, since I am already overrun with that color. I really hope they are white or yellow. But, I won’t know until spring. They went into the brick planter on the other end until I know what color they are.  If they are purple, I’ll dig them up and give them away next summer.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Believe it or not, I still have tomatoes growing. Some larger ones I just had to pick and bring inside to the window to ripen. There are still over a dozen really small ones that may not make it to maturity. But, I’ll leave them there for now.  I am still not happy with my tomato pie recipe, but DH has asked that we take a break from that particular recipe for a bit.  So, I am shelving any further testing on that one until next tomato season.  Not to worry though, I have other recipes ready to share in November.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

One more hydrangea, and these will be done for the season.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The African violets got huge over the summer, and I brought them inside for the winter.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I brought in the red amaryllis too. A few days later, the leaf fronds started to turn yellow, so I cut them off and put the bulb’s vase in a cool spot in the Carolina room and covered it up so it could rest. It needs about six weeks of dry dormancy. I’ll bring it out the first of December to start watering it in the hope that I’ll get earlier flowers next year. If it blooms again, it will be the fifth year that it has bloomed.  Amazing to me, as I have thrown these away in the past after the first year!

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Putting the orchid outside in the summer heat was good for it, but it still doesn’t look like it is going to flower.  I was happy to see some new leaves, though, so there is hope.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Back outside, there are two daisies that decided to bloom once more before winter.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Wildlife is visiting our mountain home regularly as well. Just past the hosta seed pods, there are four deer in this photo. A small family unit with one male, a female and two juveniles.  Look carefully and you can see their tails on the right.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Beautiful buck, isn’t he!

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Both of the little ones still have their fawn coloring with spots.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

On another day, a second small herd with two females and two young ones stopped by for some acorns.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

These deer were much more skittish, and took off for the woods fairly quickly, so getting their picture was a challenge.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

On the feeder, the purple finch is stopping by more often. He discovered the lower feeder that DH put up.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The goldfinches live here year round, and are in the process of losing their bright color for winter.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

This little guy, a young woodchuck (or ground hog if you prefer), has been seen several times. He loves the acorns like the other visitors do.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A large flock of female turkeys are stopping by on almost a daily schedule. There are 12 or 13 of them, and they have decided that they like the bread I give them. It is funny to go out on the veranda and call out “hi, girls!” and then watch them run up the hill from the meadow or the driveway toward me to get a bite.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

They don’t get a lot, and I try to throw the bites so everyone gets one. When I am out of bread, I go back inside, and they dine on acorns for a bit. Then they move on.  I have seen a male only once, and that was down the hill.  I’d love to see Bert and Ernie again.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I am still harvesting parsley and I plan to just leave this for as long as it wants to continue.  The yellow calibrachoa are still blooming their heads off.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The torenias continue to bloom a little, mostly on new growth at the top, but the trailing parts are looking a bit ragged. A Carolina Wren has taken to sleeping in this pot, buried in the foliage, and I scare him sometimes when I go out at dusk. He startles me as well when he flies out unexpectedly.

October in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Today’s giveaway is from my collection of Gooseberry Patch books. This one is out of print, and was published in 1997. It is charming book, wonderful for cold winter days to read about gardening and planning, recipes for garden veggies, herbal treats and more. It has some fun projects to do with things grown in the garden, and to do for the garden. Charming and fun in traditional Gooseberry Patch style. I have two copies, so one can be yours!

For Bees and Me by Gooseberry Patch

Entering today is easy, just leave a comment on this post about your garden, what you are doing now or your plans, anything to do with your garden.  Yes, international entries welcome, I can send anywhere.  Good luck!

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September in the Garden

The garden is winding down, and the hurricane has helped to move things along.  A few critters did their share too. DH modified the bird feeder so that less seed would spill into the tray, which made it a bit more difficult for the larger birds like the cardinals to eat. So, feeling sorry for them, he purchased a second feeder, and mounted it below the first one.  The little birds like the goldfinches began using the new one pretty quickly. The cardinals continued to go to the big one.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Then later, success, they figured it out.  He later added a larger perch to this one to make it easier for them to land.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The red heirlooms ripened beautifully.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another Cherokee Purple is getting close to ripe.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Caprese salad was even more delicious with Cherokee Purple tomatoes and fresh basil from my own garden.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There are still more tomatoes yet to come.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Some of the larger tomatoes were harvested before the hurricane so they wouldn’t be lost. These are now sitting on my kitchen windowsill to ripen. Well, OK, I ate the red one.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A few of the potted plants are giving me a fall show, like this red one.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A few more calibrachoa, these were blooming right up to this week, before the rain and wind came.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A flock of female turkeys visited last weekend. I stepped outside carefully and began talking to them, and tossing bits of bread to them. They weren’t real interested in the bread, but they didn’t run away when they saw me. So, progress with my turkey pets, LOL!!

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

A couple of them did finally eat the offered bread. Then, of course, the others wanted the same bite, LOL!

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

There was this skink sunning himself some days ago, I haven’t seen them since it began raining.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

More tomatoes harvested all at once became my first attempt at tomato pie.  I wasn’t happy with the result, the crust came out soggy and there wasn’t enough creaminess in the filling.  So, I’ll keep trying until I get it the way I want it.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

OK, I ate one of these too before it made it into the pie. It was too tempting on a bed of fresh spinach.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I found this sweet cutie pie in the garden a couple of weeks ago.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Then the next day my petunias were nibbled down to the nubs. Oh well, at least he didn’t eat my tomato or basil plants. I just want to pick him up and cuddle him, but I don’t think he would like it.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Just this past weekend, I finally was able to have the camera in hand when the hummingbird came by for a visit to the still blooming torenias.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The torenias are almost done, some parts are starting to die off, but the tops are still blooming. This hummingbird stayed quite a while, visiting all four hanging baskets for all the nectar available.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Irma’s winds reached a peak on Monday night, really howling through the coves and woke me up. Luckily, there wasn’t any real damage to the flowers on the veranda.  The begonias must love the cooler temperatures, as all of them are blooming more than ever.

September Flowers at From My Carolina Home

Even the pink ones, although this isn’t really a fall color.  Still, the blooms are welcome.

September Flowers at From My Carolina Home

The yellow torenias are also putting on a show for the cooler weather, and seem to be just a vigorous as before, unlike their purple cousins in the hanging baskets.

September Flowers at From My Carolina Home

My parsley and yellow calabrachoa were beat down by the wind and rain, but I expect them to recover shortly.

September Flowers at From My Carolina Home

I put the Thanksgiving cactus out on the veranda over the summer so it could get more sunlight.  It seems to be perking up well now, maybe it likes cooler weather too.  I’ll bring it inside in about a month, and it should bloom in November.

September Flowers at From My Carolina Home

One more flower to show you. DH went to the store for me, and came home with a beautiful bouquet of white roses, one of my favorite cut flowers. Gorgeous aren’t they? Their fragrance is so sweet.  He’s a keeper.

White Roses at From My Carolina Home

Volunteer day at the book sale was last week, and I did pretty well.  Note that large binder on the bottom left, that is a Master Gardener manual! Specific advice for North Carolina, also in another North Carolina Gardening Month by Month book (on top of the Cooks Country Best Lost Suppers book), will hopefully help my efforts to plant more native plants and more perennials for my area.  Cookbooks, novels, audio books, and a DVD of Gosford Park completed that day’s haul.

September Thrifting and Shopping at From My Carolina Home

Last Friday, I worked the book sale, and of course came home with an additional score, books on hiking in our area, plus another gardening book for the Carolinas. We do plan to do more hiking in the fall and next spring.  I’ll be going through my cookbooks and other books to cull some out for the garage sale this weekend at my friends home.  If you are local, look for us on Dawnwood in the Haywood Knolls Neighborhood garage sale on Saturday only.  I’m taking dishes, quilting and cooking books, fabrics, notions, stamping sets and lots more.

Hiking Books and Gardening Books

Hope you are doing OK after the hurricanes, both Harvey and Irma. We were lucky that the path turned west, and the storm weakened. The fair closed on Monday for the first time in many years as the winds were too high for safety. But it is open again, and the cooking competitions will go on this week as planned. More on that later.

September in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Hows your week going?

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Late June in the Garden

This past weekend a cool front came through, lowered the humidity and made Sunday a perfect day for gardening. I had weeds to pull, and some other tasks, so I got busy. Get ready for a picture heavy post, there is a lot to see in the garden today. Late June sees more flowering plants showing their beauty, beginning with the hostas around the large oak in the front of the house.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Aren’t these flowers pretty? The variegated purple and white is so interesting close up.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Hosta volunteers are appearing along the driveway too.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the flower bed, the gladiolas are blooming, tall spires of apricot color flowers.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

The rain last weekend beat them over a bit, so I cut them and brought them inside for a vase.  Gladiolas will continue to open up after being cut, so they make wonderful vase flowers for the kitchen.

Apricot Gladiolas at From My Carolina Home

Up on the veranda, I hit the clearance rack at the local big box garden center and came home with more small plants to fill up the remaining pots.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

I replaced the dead white poinsettia with a variegated coleus, planted more begonias and impatiens, and arranged a few more pots near the front door.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Looking from the other side, I have groupings of pots with all kinds of colors. The torenias are now trailing down to the railing, and I am considering entering one in the State Fair gardening competition.  I still want to find some metal plant racks to add some varying heights to the groups.  On the lower right, you can see the amaryllis set where the remaining leaves can soak up the sun over the summer for another bloom next year.  I am debating repotting it.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

I found a red salvia for the white ceramic vase, now a pot.  The yellow celosias on the left have been disappointing, they haven’t gotten any bigger.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

The corner that gets a lot of sun now has a full complement of colors and sizes. The yellow daisies were deadheaded and are now blooming again. A red geranium gives a pop of bright color. The purple flowers in the lower left pot are calibrachoas, a flower I had never heard of before, but on sale so gave it a try. We’ll see how it grows. Pink petunias in the middle, and on the right is a lettuce crop coming up from the second planting of seeds.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Small ceramic decorative pots have pink impatiens and begonias, set on the table as a centerpiece.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Back out in the flower bed, I got the weeding done, and decided to dig up the first clump of day lilies. In that spot I put a new-to-me perennial called a penstemon. I had to keep the insert from the pot to remember what it was, LOL!! It is supposed to bloom all summer and get 15-18 inches tall.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Then in the middle of the iris bed, I put a perennial lollipop verbena, to give some color there after the iris is done.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

This group of day lilies went into pots, and will be given to friends.  This started as one plant a few years ago and has prolifically propagated itself.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

While I was digging up weeds and day lilies, I found this little volunteer snapdragon. So I moved it to the front of the bed since its color was so pretty.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Speaking of snap dragons, the bargain plants I got last year for a quarter are putting on another wave of blooms.  Another basil plant is doing well, good thing as I have an heirloom tomato and some mozzarella for a caprese salad.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

The dianthus pinks should be done by now, but they are blooming again too.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Long view of the front bed after the glads were cut, day lilies dug and all the weeds were pulled, there are still some bare spots to fill in. My tomato plants are doing well, growing larger this year and flowering, but no tomatoes yet.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

The tomatoes in the large pot are growing and flowering now too.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

The hydrangeas continue to bloom in three colors on one plant. I’d like more purple and pink blooms so I added some lime to the top soil.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

I am hoping for a few really pretty pink blooms to add to my table centerpiece. I’m having a few friends over for lunch, and I’ll show you that tablescape soon.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Petunias in the pots are going well too, the white is lovely.

Late June Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lastly, out back the rhododendrons are blooming now. The blooms are sparse due to the lack of sun the plants get being under the canopy of tall trees.

Rhodos June at From My Carolina Home

The flowers are pretty though, the bush on the left has white flowers with a blush of pink on the buds.

Rhodos June at From My Carolina Home

The bush on the right is pure white, both buds and blooms.

Rhodos June at From My Carolina Home

I did get a clematis, and got it planted. It is light pink one. I really waited too late for a good selection at the garden center.

clematis at From My Carolina Home

I have given up on getting any strawberries, and converted this pot to one with pretty yellow calibrachoa and some flat leaf parsley.

Flowers at From My Carolina Home

One last flower to share, I planted a lovely purple phlox just Wednesday.

Phlox at From My Carolina Home

There will be more to do soon, I want to move the irises from the upper planter box to the bed below, dig up the rest of the day lilies in the planter to move somewhere else, and add more perennials to the front bed.  Of course, there will be more weeds to pull soon too.  But the wonderful thing about living here is the mild climate that makes flowers easy to grow, both wild and cultivated.  I didn’t show you the honeysuckle that is taking over the side yard, or the peaches that are ripening still.  I haven’t seen the bears lately, so maybe I will get some of the peaches, but they are not ready to harvest yet.  Speaking of critters, there has been a fair amount of wildlife here lately, and I’ll show you the recent visitors on Sunday.

What’s blooming in your garden?

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Early June In the Garden

The garden continues to grow and evolve, watching for the first tomatoes and hoping for a good crop of basil.  The garden is busy and blooming so get ready for a picture heavy post!  Out in the forest, the honeysuckle is going like crazy.

Late May in the Garden 3

The sweet fragrance wafts across the air, and the pollinators are all over these blooms.

Late May in the Garden 14

Mountain Laurel is blooming across the property.  Ours are all white, no pink ones.

Late May in the Garden 4

The peach trees have a good amount of fruit. These are wild clingstone peaches, not a lot of usable fruit, but a really sweet and intensely peach flavor.  If DH is lucky enough, I’ll get the peaches before the bears do and make him a Fresh Peach Coffee Cake.  The problem is I have to leave them on the trees until they ripen or they don’t get ripe.  So, the bears and I have a race each year to get to them at the perfect moment.

Late May in the Garden 17 peaches

This red and white petunia sneaked into my basket of bargain white petunias, so I put it with the white lobelia. Both are doing nicely on the veranda.

Late May in the Garden 18

The yellow torenias are growing and beginning to bloom more profusely.

Late May in the Garden 30

Whoopee, I actually have a nice lettuce plant! This will be a salad soon.

Late May in the Garden 22

The red snapdragons are starting another show.

Late May in the Garden 24

The celosias are still little, but blooming well.

Late May in the Garden 25

The day lilies are getting going, this one with dewdrops in the early morning.

Late May in the Garden 26

My favorite pale yellow one with the deep purple throat is blooming profusely.  It is too bad that these gorgeous blooms only last one day.  I like the ruffled edges of this one.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

More ruffled edges on the peachy color ones with yellow throats, there are two clumps of these both putting on daily shows.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

My largest tomato plant has a flower! Hoping for a nice fat tomato.

Late May in the Garden 27

The tomatoes planted in a large pot are getting bigger too.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Out in the front flower bed, the white petunias are growing and filling the pots, flowering nicely.

Late May in the Garden 28

The larger pot on the corner of the veranda is filling in too. The daisy finished blooming and I deadheaded the blooms hoping it will go again. I like this pink coleus a lot, it adds nice color to the pot.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Another planting of basil in a small pot is coming along.

Late May in the Garden 34

Inside, a friend convinced me to try growing another lettuce from the core of one used for dinner. So I did. I thought using a bulb vase would be perfect to keep it just in the water. I cut a thin slice off the bottom and put it in water.

Lettuce rooting

About a week later, it seemed to be doing really well. No roots yet, but I was hopeful as the leaves were growing.

Lettuce in bulb grower

Then, for some reason it died and turned brown. I don’t have a clue why. Another epic fail, LOL!! Also on the failure front, the poinsettia in the large pot on the veranda died too. I guess it didn’t like being replanted, or something was wrong with the light or water. But the blue lobelia and the peachy pink begonia still are growing and blooming nicely.

Lobelia May

The vibrant colors are just beautiful.

Peach begonia with lobelia

Basil and more begonias, both doing well.

White and pink begonias

The fuschia put on a spectacular show!  The two color flowers are so interesting.

Fuschia 1

Last week I made DH a couple of loaves of Apple Bread, and put the peels and cores out in a dish for the critters. It didn’t take long for the crows to find it and steal an apple core.  The others tried to take it away from him, instead of getting their own from the dish.  Later, I noticed it was all gone, so I think they came back and had a feast.

Crow with apple2

The goldfinches are wearing their summer colors, so bright and beautiful.

Goldfinch

All the torenias are blooming and they are beginning to cascade trailing shoots of leaves and flowers. They are growing larger and faster than previous years, and I think the bone meal and slow release fertilizer I added to the hanging baskets made a difference.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

Lovely cool mornings and evenings are nice to sit in the rockers and enjoy a hot cup of coffee or a nice evening libation.  The pillow is from my internet buddy Jenna’s site The Painted Apron.   She is such a wonderful artist!  I plan to get another bright pillow soon for the other chair.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I love seeing the pollinators come by, this pretty butterfly rested on the veranda, moving its wings back and forth slowly.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

The June blooming lily has one bloom again this year. I wish it would do two like it has in the past, so I’ll give it some fertilizer and bone meal to help it along.  Not bad for a bulb that was a gift several years ago, and has bloomed every year since.

Early June in the Garden at From My Carolina Home

I deadheaded the hydrangea, and it is starting to bloom with lovely shades of pink to lavendar to blue, all on the same bush and sometimes on the same flower.

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

In the Garden at From My Carolina Home

So, much is blooming and more to come.  My one little squash plant has a big flower, and I hope for more.  The hostas are filled in and fully leafed out, and should have the tall spires of purple blooms soon.  More day lilies will come into bloom too.  I still plan to move some things around, and will get to that soon.

What’s going on in your garden?

 

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