Sunday, July 19, 2015

What's NEW, OLD and GREEN? An unexpected Visitor and accidental Raspberries


Somethings: New, Old, Green and unexpected.

Hiya! I want to welcome you to our soggy part of the world, water-soaked Chicagoland, way, way out in the Northwest Suburbs.

Yesterday, between thunderstorms and the brutal HEAT, I ventured out to pull a few weeds. I saw this poor soggy little Toady. He lurked in the stones around the water trough pond and then escaped into the herb garden---or mushroom-weed garden depending on how you look at it.

Two things that love the record producing rains Chicagoland has suffered along with about one-third of the country, are mushrooms and weeds.  Now I don't mean those little scrape away weeds, I mean three-foot high thistles and tons of nasty looking stuff I have really never seen before. And the spearmint, OMG, it is like an alien scourge that will swallow our world, as we know it. (I have been pulling the same dang mint, since 1984.) Seems nothing besides poisoning the environment will rid us of it, either! NOT--We go GREEN!

So, with every clump of thistle, silver maple, or mint tangle and enthusiastic-alien-weed I pulled, this poor little Toady jumped into the next batch of weeds.  After I tickled his head, he finally disappeared into a mass of tarragon and I left him in peace. 

Today, Toady was hiding under the Saucers



Poor little guy---I had dumped five huge saucers of water right around this stump, and it wasn't until I moved the last one, did I see him. He finally jumped into the fenced garden, probably in totally paranoia from the water monster chasing him.

Then I moved my flower pots around into the less colorful areas, as I often do as the landscape changes. Everything is totally overgrown and green because of the weather.

Somethings: OLD



 While Junking, I found this OLD marvelous silver-plate shell bowl at a Goodwill--it's huge, and the plan is to add a new pump for my Nymph fountain, if I can figure out how to hide the tubing or maybe let the water spill over the silver edge into another container. 
We had a washtub under the Nymph's decking last year, but the frame has sunk so deep into the saturated soil, I can't get the tub back under there? 
I will have to see what is available to slide under the existing decking. 

Going GREEN

One of the great joys of gardening, besides the wonderful fresh food, exercise, 
and commiserating with nature is the experience (not always comfortable) of really never having
 ANY control. 
Be it weeds, bugs, weather, or cold temperatures, there are always 
the curses, joys and an occasional surprise of unexpected Gifts. 

The house behind us sold two years ago. The previous owner was a great guy and gardener. We shared our bounties back and forth over the fence. His rhubarb was divine and he had a raspberry patch that backed up to our fence. We got to pick what ever berries from the canes spilled onto our side.

The new owners, not quite as enthusiastic about gardening---dug up the rhubarb and gave us some, we have it growing now on our side. But, I was really disappointed in fall, to see all the raspberry bushes gone: cut, burned and dug out. 

This year, low and behold, raspberries invasive as they can be, traveled along their unwanted roots across into our welcoming yard and filled up the skinny boxes we have along our fence. Waalaa! Six-foot high canes full of huge cascading red raspberries! 

New Accidental Rasperries

Fighting the birds and mosquitos this morning, I picked about 3 quarts of really ripe raspberries.


After a very quick dip in fresh clean waterand a quick shake in the sieves (Granny's)

I drained them on paper toweling as they are very water-soaked and so ripe.

I think I will make a thick sauce we can pour over frozen yogurt tonight.

GOING GREEN

The raspberries, moldy or over ripe, under ripe and miscellany went into the compost bowl.
Yes, we compost almost everything. I buy GREEN paper products that decompose.
Our vegetable waste, eggshells, coffee grounds, and tea goes into the compost bin and eventually to the pile. In the bowl, you can see the rinds of the casaba melon we had this week, and the lemons from our tea, and eggshells from breakfast. Now out it goes to the turning bin with some compost starter. 



Sorry to end on the note of garbage, LOL. But that is the day in the life of a gardener, toad keeper, nymph enhancer and composter.

Thanks for stopping by, and please come back again.

Sandi


All the opinions and photographs in this blog are my own, I have not been paid or reimbursed in anyway for my opinions or posts. Please do not use photos without linking back to this blog without my permission. Thank you for your cooperation, Sandi Magle

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