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Houseplant maintenance

I hurt my back this morning, and my knee last week so that took out most physical things I wanted to do today, but the back was feeling well enough that I opted to get some stuff done around the house. I wound up dividing and repotting several plants that had been looking a little sad.

I also repotted my orchid and took a leaf cutting from an African violet. The mama plant is looking sad, but the one I pulled out a month ago looks fantastic.

Update: I felt the need to take a photo of all my variegated plants because I love them and then I also did a little update on ‘what’s outside’. The outside garden had a rough year.

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Cow Manure Theft

I may have stolen manure today. I was told, several years ago, that I could come get some compost from the bio-digester energy company ‘anytime’.

By ‘several years ago’ I mean 2014. 

I didn’t take them up on it. A PTA member called them last year and had permission for the school to go get some, but then the school said they weren’t allowed to use it because it’s not a proper commercial product. But I thought ‘well they said we can have it – let’s go get some!’

Today we went. I couldn’t find anyone to ask/tell about what we were doing.

I went to the spot where, in 2014, they were dumping the finished compost and took some. But the pile was still heating up, which made me think that maybe this wasn’t the finished compost and was I maybe rooting around in their ‘stuff to go into the digester/sarlacc pit’ pile by mistake?

The ill-gotten compost
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Jardins de Marqueyssac

This is a chateau and large garden on a ridge-line above the Dordogne river. Normally open during the day, it sometimes opens in the evening for a candlelit view of the gardens along with music. I would go back in a heartbeat. I’d love to also see it during the day.

As we were about to walk in, the light glowing through a grape arbor caught my eye.

Inside, in addition to musicians, there were ‘fairies’, colorfully lit fountains and these little goblins popping out of the earth. In the daytime there was a mini rope-net course for the kids to play on, but we didn’t have much time there before it became too dark to see.


Enchanted pool

Our girls casting some sort of spell.

Earth goblins. I think I need some of these for my yard.

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I managed to come down with the 3-week crud that has been plaguing everyone, but late last week I finally felt up to moving around and we went down to Seattle to catch the cherry trees before the blooms faded.  I didn’t wind up with too many great photos of cherry blossoms, but there was quite a bit to impress.

What I learned:  I need to think about the composition of my shots more and I find that difficult when I’m still tired.  It’s hard to nail the focus on macro shots, especially when I don’t have a tripod. I’m still learning how to take photos in aperture priority mode and it’s not always a success.

ferns and moss on a tree

tiny orange bells

mysterious fairy glen




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Garden Aspirations

For the last few years my garden has fallen into disarray.  Some of that was laziness on my part and some was circumstance, but this year, my youngest child has expressed an interest in having her own garden patch and I therefore purchased seeds.

I can only garden in a smallish areas so I’m going to have extras.  If you are local to me and want some, or want to exchange seeds, let me know!  I would especially like to have someone else try to germinate the blue poppies with me.  They are amazing but I think I’ve had trouble with them in the past.

Vegetables & herbs: cherry tomato, cucumber, blue lake pole beans, snap peas, rainbow carrots, dill, parsley.     I have asparagus and strawberry plants for the taking

Flowers & ornamental: coleus, calendula, red yarrow, california poppies, blue himalayan poppies, nasturtium.

What I want: oxalis, compact ornamentals that do well in shade, things that are easy to grow and don’t take up tons of space.