August 29, 2012

Pomodori Benne, my Tomato Bucket

Typed the words, tomatoes bucket, into Google translator and decided that pomodori benne looked good. That's tomatoes bucket in Portuguese.

Retyped pomodori benne into MS Paint in a size that I thought would work. It takes experimenting.
Saved the .jpg file. Pulled the file into PhotoSuite, my fav for manipulating pics.

Resized. Flipped horizontally. Printed. My method to transfer the printed words failed. Never mind.

Flipped it back. Printed. Marked the back with some 40 year old oil pastel I found in the garage.
Burnished the front transferring the letters onto a piece of brown paper also found in the garage using a table knife handle.

Went over the transferred letters with the oil pastel stick. Diluted some school glue with water, went over the letters to set.

Used the rest of the glue/water mix to glue the brown paper to the tomato bucket. Trimmed the bottom edge with an old piece of unfurled paper twist from the garage pasted on with school glue.

I was not making an heirloom container here, just covering the printing on the side of the bucket using things at hand. I need to use up in a creative way all the craft materials I've been saving for 30-40 years.

I cut back many of my container veggies and some came back all nice and new. This tomato plant persisted without cutting back and has grown straight up and has some little fruits at the top.
Tomato Bucket

August 26, 2012

Simple Birdbaths Using Stones

Birds don't ask for much. They do appreciate fresh water to drink and in which to bathe.  Seeds and insects are plentiful here but fresh water requires some effort on the part of the gardener.

A stone with a natural depression, with a dripping hose
channeled through a piece of bamboo for esthetics.
Constant dripping keep water fresh, discourages mosquito
growth and insures a patina of moss on the stone. The sound of
dripping water attracts birds to the bath.
An old birdbath with patina has dripping water from a vintage brass
faucet shaped like a quail, supplied by a hidden hose.

Overflow from the birdbath drips into a stone with a natural
depression for the use of smaller birds.
When winter comes with danger of freezes, I disconnect the hoses and carry water to the birdbaths in a bucket. Usually in late February I have to re-connect the hoses when migrating Robins arrive and line up for a drink and a quick bath.
 I'm linking to the Birdbath Party at Funky Junk Interiors blog. 
My first birdbath was a garbage can lid on a concrete block. Dripping water was provided by a milk jug with a pinhole in the bottom, suspended overhead. Brown thrashers were among the visitors, usually shy about water and ground feeders never visiting a tall birdbath.


August 12, 2012

August in the Greenhouse

This is the first year that we have left the greenhouse intact and some plants have remained inside. Most went out to be planted or are summering in the 'secret garden' under a big juniper tree.

Vegetables have rotated in and out. Tomatoes actually ripened in the greenhouse.

White lantana cuttings rooted, Gerbera seedlings bumped up to a bigger
pot. The little plant sitting on an upended pot is a pink rose cutting.
It has a another bud and has already bloomed once.

Eggplants are my fav to grow. They're not quite as watering-sensitive as tomatoes.

Amaryllis and daylilies from seed. Wider leaves
are hippeastrum.

Miss Winnie brought me a half dozen
cuttings. I pinched some little pieces 
to make even more plants, in the yellow tray.
All are Christmas Cacti except for one Easter.

I cut and rolled grapevine to start balls for Rainforest Drops.
Steve Asbell puts Tillandsias and Rhipsalis in his.
I plan to use Christmas Cacti and Resurrection fern,
mainly because that is what I've plenty.

Schlumbergia cuttings and fern

I think this Epiphyllum will quickly be too big for
a Rainforest Drop. They get heavy. I think the
Bromeliad behind it will be heavy, too.
All these will go back inside before frost.

August 02, 2012

Bright Flowers in the Late Summer Garden

Bright summer tropicals like Pride of Barbados, Esperanza and Duranta are blooming for the delight of butterflies. They also flock to Pentas and Porterweed. You can see them Here on my Seedscatterer blog.

Firecracker Fern and Ghost Plant
Russelia equisetiformis and Graptopetalum paraguayense

The garden holds other blossoms that attract few butterflies, but are for the delight of the gardener.
Firecracker fern and graphtopetalum are a combo that I saw in a picture. I would never have thought to put them in a container together, but they worked out well.

Pale pink Pentas and Laura Bush Petunias

Pentas are a favorite of butterflies, who also sometimes visit a petunia. The tiny yellow blooms of Malampodium are never visited by butterflies but I think the bright yellow might bring them closer to the more muted pale pink Pentas.

Madagascar Periwinkles are just getting going.
They're taking the place of spent Rudbeckias and California poppies who
can't take the heat any more. These have reseeded for several seasons from
Cooler series periwinkles which seem to be more resistant to
nematodes and various diseases. They range from palest pink to
purple, all with a white eye.

Mandevilla on the grape arbor.

Scuppernong grapes on the grape arbor, just getting ripe and
oh, so sweet! They've had ample water and hot weather.

A last look at Firecracker Fern. The pea-like foliage belongs to
Pride of Barbados.

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