Thursday, September 30, 2010

heavenly blues

today has been mostly overcast and rainy here in the nation's capitol, but i managed to sneak in a dog walk between torrential downpours...despite the fact that it was well past noon, these heavenly blue morning glories were wide open and shining like a beacon through the heavy mist.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

modern chicken coop

i dont think chickens are allowed within city limits...but if they were, mine would live in this awesome coop. the hand crafted nogg is made of cedar, and provides urban farmers with room enough for 2-4 chickens...
this could work!

Friday, September 24, 2010

the mid atlantic red fruit festival

seeds to schools has a benefit tasting,-the red fruit festivaltonight 6-8 featuring local farmers and chefs downtown in the golden will be available at the door or online. make it a super hot downtown city night starting with a free concert at woodrow wilson plaza followed by this celebration of the tomato!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

hello, stink bugs!

the brown marmorated stink bugs have arrived to much fanfare: now everyone wants to know how to eradicate them! they are a very harmful non-native pest that eats everything: roses, fruit trees, doesnt matter: they eat it all. i had a wonderful crop of tomatoes this year (just perfect for me and the mister, not much more though), but several of my larger tomatoes were devastated at the last moment by-you guessed it-the stink bugs. now as days are getting shorter and nights a little cooler, these guys are clamouring to get inside your house to over winter: stinky! the pesticide people and exterminators are trying to capitalize on stink bug mania, but reports from the people studying these beasts DO NOT recommend pesticides and/or fogging devices as they are not effective against stink bugs, kill good bugs and may cause harm to you and your pets over the long term. i have also noticed they are lumping all stink bugs into the same category, whereas the brown marmorated is an introduced non-native bug and we have many other native stink bug species which are not harmful and do serve various gardening purposes. parasitic wasps seem to be the best control for the beasts, but if you are spraying insectacide around, you will kill them also, and have a doubly nasty problem next season. i am just flushing the ones i see inside- which is a lot, btw.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

lamborghini garden tools

put this one on my christmas list:  the tonino lamborghini electric chainsaw...and the lamborghini grass trimmer: please dont forget the shears! i have never used a chainsaw-nor do i intend to in the future- but i would just like to have this one hanging around, like a piece of art.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

power of pollinators

this summer had super hot 90°+ days for a really long time without rain. this prolonged dry heat resulted in a lack of pollinators...(did you know clustering flies are the most prolific pollinators? i did not). for example, my squash had a million blooms, but only four (delicious) actual squash,,,also no white squash moths...but now temperatures have dropped into the 80's...nights have also cooled...the sedum has bloomed and finally the bees have returned. and, yes: i have some baby squash developing!

Saturday, September 18, 2010


i love a volunteer!
while weeding the completely-overgrown-despite-no-rain-and-record-temperatures backyard, i stumbled upon a volunteer purple  rose of sharon! sweet: now i have a coordinate for my volunteer pink one!

Friday, September 17, 2010

saturday gardening events

saturday gardening stuff...coast to coast...
•there's an orchid auction in florida...yes: the central florida orchid society is auctioning off rare stock: add to your collection today, 9-3...
•get your fill of blooming african violets and their cousins at the african violet and gesneriad show and sale in capital city, saturday 1-4 and sunday 11-3.
•delight in dahlias at the rochester dahlia society dahlia show...get there early: opens at 9:30 til sold.

Monday, September 13, 2010

web worm alert

well i guess i am a little late because they are here...the web worms that is! i am fortunate to not have many in my yard, but, wow: check out my neighbors tree: engulfed! the fall web worm creates the characteristic webbed nests on tree limbs of a wide variety of hardwoods in the late summer and fall: it has been recorded in 636 species. this worm is mainly an aesthetic pest and is not believed to harm otherwise healthy trees. the moth is native to north america, with a range from canada to mexico, and is one of the few insect pests introduced from north america into other continents: sorry, people.

Friday, September 10, 2010

weekend gardening events

its beginning to look a lot like fall...and that means weekend gardening events!
•go native at the australian plants expo 2010 saturday & sunday! dont miss the water bug attraction today 10-4.
• be part of the gathering of gardeners symposium and plant sale in rochester: it's glamourous and winter will be here before you know it!
•learn to be water-wise in dallas for free saturday 9-5
• its an open house and plant sale in york: mid-atlantians should sleep in, stock up at 1:00pm, then prep to plant during the rainy season...if it eventually comes!
• i cannot grow dahlias, but others show off their abilities at the rhode island dahlia show and the powell garden dahlia show in kansas city.
• check out the situation saturday at the 39th annual jersey shore rose society show: sweet!
•while in the tri-states area, sample something delicious at the heirloom tomato tasting in delaware ... new jersey...
• meet up for the annual iris meeting in columbus: it's mandatory!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

hurricane watching

i was going to drive down to the bay and put our kayaks up on the porch and secure any other loose items before earl hit virginia, but i decided to wait and see what is going to develop...and what has developed is a stronger, more determined storm that the forecasters arent so sure about. so, i am rethinking my plan! i took the above photo during tropical depression ernesto a few years back: it was really scary with many, many tornadoes and millions of dollars in damage done in my modest neighborhood alone: the red cross was there for a week while we didnt have power and that was just a depression! this category 4 hurricane is strengthening and wait...oh, great: they just posted a state of emergency for both maryland and virginia waters!