Tag Archives: gardening

When Life Hands You Apples…

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My lemon tree is covered with aphids. My orange tree is still a baby. But my neighbor’s apple tree is putting out like a champ.

For the last week or so, the tree has been dumping in the backyard and the side of our house.

This has been going on every fall since we moved in and it really makes a big mess. My neighbor never offers to clean it up or to prune the tree back. Since the person didn’t want to do anything about it, I decided that I would. And here is my solution.


A trip to OSH and $21.99 later, I’ve got a nice little pile of apples to eat. In fact, I think we’re having pork chops with fried apples for dinner tonight. A few more picking sessions and the picker will have paid for itself. Pesticide free, non sprayed apples.

Mmmmmmmmm…That’s what I’m talking about!

So friends, the moral of this story is not to get mad when you have a lazy neighbor. The moral is to enjoy the hell out of the apples they are too lazy to take care of themselves.

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Dead Trees Tell No Tales

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When we bought our house, we inherited a dead cherry tree in the front yard. This thing was all dried out dead branches and we pretty much neglected it for the last year or so. Heck, we were about to uproot the thing when it suddenly began sprouting green leaves this spring. Today, while out in the yard, I found this.

I’ll be d*mned. Not only did this thing come back from the dead, it’s starting to grow cherries.

Nature just laughed in my face.

And I’m a jerk for neglecting this baby because I thought it was dead.

Love and hanging my head in shame,

Camille

store: www.havelinasoap.com

Wonder of Plants

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Hi everyone!

Has it really been almost 2 months since my last update? Yikes! Time just flies doesn’t it?

Lately I’ve been obsessed with the plants in my yard. We had some work done in our front yard and our contractor was less than gentle with some of my beauties. I like the guy, but boy, was I ticked when I got home and saw some of my plants gone and others smashed. Poor Fernando had to deal with my wrath, but like a sweetheart, has been helping me to rehab my damaged plants.

Two of my plants I’ve been monitoring everyday are my blueberries and my orange tree. Fernando bought me two blueberry plants last year, but I could barely get them to even sprout green leaves. This year I put them in a new location and fed them tons of food and water. I’d like to think my efforts paid off.

My orange tree is a new acquisition. I happened to be in Costco when they were unloading the trees. Wouldn’t you know I picked the sickliest one? For whatever reason, it called to me and guess what? With food, sunshine and lots of love, my tree is thriving.

I have several of these baby oranges growing. (Or what I think are oranges anyway!)

I’m absolutely fascinated with the life cycle of plants and how such delicate things can produce such hearty things for us to enjoy. Life is amazing.

Love & Chlorophyll,

Camille

store: http://www.havelinasoap.com

Weeds, Seeds and Caddyshack. All Happening in the Garden.

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Hey everyone!

A couple of things have happened lately that took me out of the game awhile. One, I got super sick and two, I switched to a new alternative work schedule. This long weekend is the first in long time that I’m able to do things like blog and work in the yard.

Speaking of the yard, with the crazy weather we’ve just had, ours is out of control. Since yesterday was sunny and somewhat warm, I went out with shears in hand to clean up and harvest. Check out what I’ve found.

Crawling Rosemary

Initially I had this planted in the ground, but our resident gopher is treating the yard like a buffet. I came out one day and the gopher had eaten one of my rosemary plants. Then I found he’d eating my african tall grass. And a few other plants. Yes, I am currently wearing a Rambo style head band and clenching a knife in between my teeth. How did you know?

Roses and Rosehips

We had a week before the snow (yes I said snow) came that was in the 70s, so my roses started blooming. These are the last two that aren’t completely gone.

I have a lot of rosehips (above) in the yard now. I’m getting ready to process them now and will take lots of pictures for you.

At the same time, even with the hot weather, because of the rain, a lot of my roses had rust on them.

See the orange spots? Thats rust. Meh. So I spent a lot of time removing all the rusty leaves.

Yarrow

My yarrow (also known as achillea) has completely dried out so I finally took the dried blossoms from the yard. They actually looked really pretty dried. Oh yeah, and ignore the weeds in the background. Thanks.

Lavender

Yes, lavender infused oil is coming soon. And I mean like REALLY soon. I can’t wait to harvest this. Last year when I transplanted this into the ground, I was really unsure if it would take. I am so happy to see it green and vibrant.

Blueberries

Okay, so these aren’t blueberries, but this is one of my blueberry plants. Fernando bought these for me last year and I almost killed them. Luckily, I got smart, moved them to another spot in the yard and now I have blooms coming. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for berries this year.

Raspberries

For the last month, my raspberry plant has been growing quite a bit. I’ve been lazy on harvesting so I’ve been feeding the bugs and critters with my raspberries. I’m okay with that.

Rose Geranium (Attar of Roses)

If you can believe it, this plant was originally a quarter of it’s current size and I’ve only had it for about 7  months. I’ve done almost nothing to this plant, other than watering occassionaly and pulling weeds. (Except for the ones you currently see of course – just ignore them. Thanks!) It amazes me how even with some neglect this plant has just thrived. It’s even got flower buds coming out.

This particular geranium is “Attar of Roses” and it truly does smell like a rose. All you have to do is rub a leaf between your fingers to get the fragrant oils on your skin. I am still debating how I will process this plant. Infused oil? Fresh tea? Lotion blend? I dunno.

Of course, I left out all the weeds. Except for the one I’ve been munching on.

When I was a kid we called it sour grass but there many different names for this weed. I love how cheery they are and how tart and refreshing they taste. Somebody told me that too much can be poisonous, so I try not to eat too many of them.

Well, thats all for today. Any good things growing in your yard?

-Camille

store: www.havelinasoap.com

 

Cherokee Purple

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Every now and then, I think about something other than soap. For example, earlier this year I decided I wanted to have my own tomato garden. I didn’t know much about tomatoes, (other than I liked to eat them) so when it came time to pick my plants, I just grabbed whatever looked healthy. I came home with 2 cherry tomato plants and a regular sized tomato plant.

Well, regular is far from what I got.

As my plant grew, the tomatoes started to turn purple.

Yes, I said purple.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia’s entry on Cherokee Purple tomatoes.

I got online and looked up purple tomatoes and found that what I had were Cherokee Purple tomatoes. It’s a beefsteak (why a vegetable is called “beefsteak” is beyond me) and an heirloom variety. I finally had one ripe enough to pick and cut into and boy, was I excited.

My cherokee purple and cherry tomatoes

Look at that color

I was surprised at how beautiful the color was upon cutting into the tomato. It was almost hot pink or dark pink (like a watermelon) and the picture above doesn’t capture the color exactly. The taste was even better than the color. Light, but sweet and tart, it was the best tasting salsa I had ever eaten. Even Fernando commented on how tasty the tomato was.

So yes, I have to agree to the hype. Homegrown heirloom tomatoes do taste a million and one times better than anything you can buy in the store. And, if you can get your hands on one of these Cherokee Purple babies, let me know what you think.

Camille