Sunday, January 30, 2011

Old Man Winter

The last 2 days have been beautiful!! Yesterday was especially pretty, which gave me the opportunity to get out and do some winter clean up. Little Benjamin bunny supervised as I worked cutting back a few things and watering wildflower rosettes.
I have decided that I really like kale. Isn't it pretty in the old wash tub? I am going to make a note in my gardening journal to buy more next year. But..of course, these spring like days are not going to last! Old Man Winter is returning--and returning with force. The forecasters are telling us that Alaska is sending us a cold front that might bring ice on Tuesday and frigid temps. The low Thursday night will be 14. Really! Texas weather is so fickled!
Oh well--I don't care. I am making more soup, oatmeal cookies this time--and-- planting seeds indoors! I always start nasturtiums inside so they are ready to go outside in early spring. I use the fiber containers so when the time comes, I can plant without disturbing the roots. Kind of ironic of the nasturtium seeds I am planting is appropriately named "Alaska!"

Monday, January 17, 2011

Where IS it??

Where IS it? Have you seen it? I haven't seen it in weeks. It use to be up in the sky shinning bright, even on cold winter days. But the past few weeks--it disappeared!
And in my little garden, we are all a little glum and could use some warmth and shine to cheer us up!
Ok--going a little crazy these days, but that is what happens when the sun disappears from sight for soooo many days! It has been cold and cloudy for so long now, we are all feeling rather droopy like these pansies. The weather forecasters keep saying "maybe tomorrow," but here we are again with a dreary day. sigh...
But there are promising signs of good things to come. The cold weather has not hurt the snap-
dragons or alyssum, and little bunny and I are so happy to see bulbs shooting up all over the garden. I see early, early signs of spring on this dreary winter day that delights me..but I sure would like to see a bright shinning sun in the sky to cheer us all up! Maybe tomorrow...

"The sun will come out tomorrow, bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow, there'll be sun.."

Saturday, January 8, 2011


It is a beautiful day! The sky is blue, the birds are singing and the pansies are looking happy. I guess it's in the mid to upper 50's. Yesterday the high was 68! So what am I doing today? Why I am making a list!
Ingredients for soup - check!
New package of hot chocolate - check!
Chocolate chip cookies - in the oven
Plants inside - oops, not yet!

Can ya tell what is coming?
For some reason our spring like winter days are turning into true winter overnight tonight. An arctic front is on the way.. darn it!
Tomorrow at this time there will be a cold rain, perhaps mixed with snow. Before the end of next week the low will be 19.. double darn!
Here we go again on this roller coaster ride with our Texas winters..
one day it's gorgeous, the next day it snows. We are suppose to be in a deep freeze all next week, but looking at a long range forecast, week after next should find us back in the low 60's! So...bring it on Mother Nature--I am ready for you! I can handle this cold I hate so much. But..if anyone needs me, you'll find me sitting by the fire drinking hot chocolate eating chocolate chip cookies!
Stay warm y'all!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Gardening - 2011

Happy 2011 everyone! I hope you enjoyed the holidays with family and friends like I did. Now that we are into a new year I guess we all are thinking about our gardening chores and goals for 2011. Here in Texas the weather people tell us we will have a "La Nina" winter this year. Typically that means warmer temperatures and less precipitation. So far, that has been true. We tend to get cold fronts come through which puts the lows in the 20's with highs in the upper 40's, then a few days later the highs will get back into the 50's or 60's. Back and forth, with not much rain. As you can see from this picture, it's cold enough to add winter brown to the garden.
However, our winters do allow us to have pansies blooming all the time. That is certainly a bright spot to a cold winter day. But...I do miss getting outside and digging in the dirt!
One thing to do on a cold winter day is think about what changes to make in the garden. My goal for the little backyard always seems to be "clean up that mess!" :) I tend to accumulate a few too many things out in my garden--or can one really ever have too many things? Well, that maybe the gardener's choice, but I will have some tiding up to do. Something that maybe a big project for hubby and I in front is that we (that would be ME) are wanting to enlarge our beds that run along the front of the house. We are also thinking about cutting down some of our shrubs that are not growing well and have gotten really too big. The problem is deciding what stays and what goes. And enlarging those beds will not be easy as we have a sprinkler system to deal with. But I really would like deeper beds so I will have more room for blooming things. Right now the beds are full of leaves. I need to get out there and hand pick the leaves out of the beds as they almost completely cover the pansies. I am having a hard time knowing exactly what to do, so this project may have to wait a bit, but winter sure would be a good time to start.
Of course this time of year we all think about seeds. My wildflower seeds are in the ground, but I am already thinking about what to plant in spring: ZINNIAS!! Last summer it seemed to take forever, but my zinnias finally grew and became beautiful. They were the focal point of the yard in hot August.
Lots to think about and plan. And I know you are all there with me, dreaming of that beautiful garden in 2011.

"If winter comes, can Spring be far behind?" Percy Bysshe Shelley