Monday, March 17, 2014

Whoa, I Learned Something New. . . .

Thanks to reader Lynne, I learned my
Creeping Forsythia
Creeping Forsythia shrub is not so.  Lynne asked if the plant was similar to a Winter Jasmine.  I got curious last night as to what the difference was and here is what I found

Upon closer examination, this morning of the remaining 3 flowers, this is what I saw: A singular six-petal flower that had emerged from a joint where leaves would eventually emerge; unlike a cluster of 4-petal flowers of the Forsythia. I was not familiar with Winter Jasmine.  Sounds like similar care and treatment.  Thanks Lynne.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Spring, AHHHHhhhhchooo!

YUP, IT'S THAT time of the year when the mucous membranes inside our noses reacts to all those allergens abundantly loading the breathing air and the histamine and other chemicals are released.  This goes on until either a) one takes something to control the histamine and de-sensitizes them self; or b) you suffer thru it until all those little allergens have quit spewing forth into the air.  Such a beautiful time of the year!

The Creeping Forsythia
THE CREEPING forsythia shrubs are now green and doing their creeping thing; the mulberry tree is covered with thousands of green buds driving the hundreds and hundreds of bees crazy. I am assuming it is probably a black mulberry and will produce thousands and thousands of berries to be consumed by the area birds - who will leave their lovely purple marks all over everything!
The fuzzy Mulberry Tree
 Ahhhhchoo, Spring.

I MOVED THE yellow finch feeders over to the now budding pomegranate bush, so Jim can see them out his bedroom window.
Pretty pom red leaves on pomegranate.
I also spread birdseed on the ground for the sparrows, house finches and mourning doves that are in the area. The pom bush is budding forth with the most beautiful pom colored leaves.  I did some trimming and thinning last Fall (only a fifth at a time I was told) and will do some more this Fall.

THE TEXAS SAGE bush is shedding its old leaves and new ones, in that beautiful sage color, are appearing.  The Mormon Tea bush (also known as: Brigham Tea, Cowboy Tea, Whorehouse Tea, Squaw Tea, Canyon Tea Indian names: Tuttumpin (Paiute), Tutupivi (Kawaiisu)) is covered with seeds.

THE DESERT WILLOW tree is just starting to show some leaf buds coming out, I noticed when clearing out the weeds on the street easement section.  I am preparing soil in pots to do some planting in - have nasturtium seeds germinating in an egg carton for now.  

I BOUGHT DOUBLE blooming iris plants last Fall with the idea of getting them put in the ground shortly after moving here.  Well, didn't get that done so they sat wrapped in newspaper in a brown
Soaking the iris plants.
paper bag all winter.  Wondering if they had made it through, I started soaking them in a bucket of water a week or so ago; and, see for yourself:  

Iris are growing, see new roots?
 I know it's not the ideal time to be planting iris, but will be putting them in pots until I decide where they will be placed permanently. Since I have a gravel yard, there is a thick layer of lining membrane under the gravel and not an ideal environment for iris who like to spread out.  The instructions I got with the plants said they need a minimum of 5 hours of sunlight and with the harsh, bright summer sunlight here I am going to experiment with pot placement to see how they do.

 THE DESERT (or Yellow) Bird of Paradise trees are
Ferny leaves of Desert (Yellow) Bird of Paradise.

showing signs of life with their little ferny-looking leaves.  When the morning sun hits them, they are a red color. I really love the flowers they produce.  There is another and smaller tree out close to the street.
AM ATTEMPTING to take root cuttings from the Creeping Forsythias to plant along the alley; but really need to get some rooting compound to help root development.  I may try some home remedies using "willow tea" (if I can find some willow trees around and ask the person permission to cut some stems) or honey, which is a natural antiseptic which aids in sanitation while the roots are forming.
Attempting root cuttings with the Creeping Forsythia.

NOT MUCH activity with the various cacti yet. 
Can you see the new buds?
Although one of the cholla is just beginning to show some activity.

SOME OF MY activities inside include finishing up the window tinting and cleaning of the windows inside and out; I fiddled with various curtain arrangements for Jim in his bedroom and he really likes the long dining room curtains former owner Chuck picked out, so I moved those into Jim's room. They are much easier for him to open and close. I am experimenting with window arrangements for my bedroom; doing some baking and trying out my hand on the grill (never did grill much before).  And reading on my Kindle.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Stop the Press. . . .

Meeting fellow blogger and Casita owner Glenda Laine and her husband Jeff, along with their 2 cats and dog Kira. They are spending time in New Mexico exploring the many State Parks and waiting for weather in Arkansas to be - well, better than it has been.  Jeff has some appointments coming up at the VA hospital in Fayetteville.

Glenda's blog is Casita Escapes and captures their adventures of full-timing in a 17 foot Casita along with their two cats and keeshond dog Kira.

Kira knows what a camera is & poses.
Today we went to lunch at a new Mexican food restaurant in town.  It was the first time Jim and I had been.  It was good.  The hot green chili I had on my smothered fries had me shed one tear and definitely cleared my sinuses.  It's a "go-back to again" restaurant.

Glenda and Jeff will be in the area for awhile.  And, we'll see each other again.  So much fun talking to a fellow Casita owner and sharing stories, funny adventures and talking about other fellow Casita/fiberglass trailer owners.