I'm enjoying this whole homeowner gig so much that I just never want to leave my yard. I like puttering around with my plants, I like eating what I have grown, I like having my own space to do what I want with, I like sitting on the deck with a book and some tea, I like watching the birds and the sky and the shadows and the greenness.
I have five pairs of hummingbirds in the area that visit the feeders regularly, especially just before dusk. I've seen two pairs of calliope hummingbirds, two pairs of black chinned hummingbirds, and a rufous hummingbird pair just showed up this week. They're so much fun to watch.
The herb garden on my deck is looking very lush. Everything has tripled in size since the pictures I showed two weeks ago.
The tomatoes have grown another foot since I staked them, so I did another round of tying up the vines and pinching suckers this evening. (But no pinching of suckers on the Oregon Spring plant, since that's a determinate variety. Only indeterminate tomatoes get pruned.)
Emma went around and counted while I was doing that, and she informs me that we have at least 58 green tomatoes of various sizes on these four plants!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Mostly on the Amish Paste and Black Krim, but the Oregon Spring and Mortgage Lifter plants are catching up from their late start and have set their first fruits.
Here's Emma being a tomato plant, complete with fruiting branches. You can't see the tomatoes that are growing from her hands because they are the incredibly rare invisible variety.
The pansies were finally done in by the heat this week, so I replaced them with some petunias. The stargazer lilies are doing well, and are standing over a foot tall now. Not too bad, considering that only two and a half months ago they were in a plastic bag of dried out sphagnum moss in the dregs of the bulb display at BiMart.
Also from the BiMart bulb dregs, the freesia is doing wonderfully. I noticed today that there are now five spikes! Still too early to call the color on the three smallest. I hope at least one is white- that's my favorite.
Here's part of the mint collection, with the new orange mint. The bottom step wasn't quite wide enough for the planter, and I had to
put the orange mint on the concrete. That empty space makes me twitchy,
and I think I need to find something to fill it. (By rearranging the pots I already have, not getting a new one. Though I make no promises.)
I was passing through John Day, Oregon a
couple weeks ago to visit a job site, and there's a great little nursery
there called The Rock Garden. They had all sorts of fun things. I got the orange mint, a
variegated lemon thyme, a lime thyme, and two lavenders (Mini Blue,
which is tiny and cute, and another Hidcote because they're so pretty).
Their prices were very reasonable, and the owner is very nice (and is a
knitter!). I've been driving by that place for years and decided it
was finally time to stop and check it out.
Also new is a pepper planter rescued from the dead plant clearance bin at Walmart two weeks ago. I pretty much avoid Walmart if at all possible, but if they're going to mark their plants down by 50 to 75 percent rather than go to the trouble of watering them, I'll take advantage of it. This is a three-plant pot, with red, green, and orange bell peppers, and was 75% off. Three big plants in a 12-inch pot for $3. Yep. That's a risk I'll take.
It was very wilted and sad when I got it, with one golf ball sized fruit on
each plant. Two weeks later, all three peppers are full-sized and ready to pick
(or leave on and allow to color up), plus there are more flowers.
Last but not least, we picked the last of the blueberries tonight, a delicious little handful.
The strawberries finished up a week or so ago, so now those are both done for the year. Waaah!
I don't have pictures of the rest of the garden because the greens bed and peas are pretty scruffy right now. The lettuce all bolted and is ready to come out, and I think the peas are too. The past couple weeks of temperatures in the upper 90s (and above) have been hard on them.
The Tomato Annex is booming along, and there are quite a few little tomatoes up there too. The Basil Annex plants have been pinched back three times, and I have three pints of pesto in the freezer so far, plus a dinner's worth that we ate. The Cucumber Annex plants are growing, and I'll likely pick the first cuke tomorrow, but I think the deer nibbled a couple leaves. I was afraid of that, since they're unfenced.
So that's what's up with me today!