Saturday, September 20, 2014

Looking for the gold Aspen trees in Colorado.

The DragonFly garden is on maintenance mode, September in South Florida is like another summer month.  The weather is hot and rainy, plus is the peak of the hurricane season.  I have a few projects in the planning stages, but I’m waiting for the cooler days of October.  Next month I will by planting the vegetable garden, thinning of my bromeliad collection and planting the winter annuals.  
   

 Today I will bore you with pictures from my vacation to the Rocky Mountains of Colorado.  Every year around this time, my wife and I, head for the mountains looking for cooler weather and fall colors.  This year the trip was a little early, due to an airline ticket sale.  The weather was not as cold as we wanted (mid 40s at night and high 70s during the day) and the aspen trees were not at peak. (They needed another two weeks)
I fell in love with Colorado 40 years ago when I was in my twenties, single and working for an airline.  Back in those days skiing was my life, today my sixty year old knees can take the pounding of skiing.  I still love this state, and I get as much pleasure hiking the mountain trails and taking pictures of the natural beauty of these mountains as I did skiing.

First stop Snowmass, last weekend they held their annual hot air balloons races.





















We hiked the Maroon Bells in the White River National Forest.



In the town of Aspen we rode the gondola to the top of Aspen Mountain.














We did a five mile hike in the Rio Grande Trail, one of my favorite trails in Aspen.  For those of us oxygen starved flatlanders this is an easy trail to walk.














After the five mile hike we ended with a visit to the John Denver memorial park.  If you ever visit the town of Aspen I recommend that you visit this park.  It is of the most beautiful and well done memorial park that I have ever visited.




Finally found fall colors on the road to the ghost town of Ashcroft.


The last night we stayed in Vail.  I call Vail the Disney World of the mountains, they do a great job planting flowers everywhere.  



We spent time at the Betty Ford Alpine Garden, the world’s highest botanical garden.














The wildflowers of Colorado.






Saturday, August 30, 2014

Gardening for wildlife in the city

Over the years my gardening style has evolve several times; lately I find that I garden with wildlife in mind.  I get as much joy from seen the different type of wildlife visiting my garden, that I do from the plants and the flowers. 
The greedy city developers have made our neighborhood deserts for wildlife.  I believe is up to those of us with small city gardens to make them wildlife friendly.   In my garden I make sure that there is plenty of water available, full birdfeeders, plenty of hiding places for birds and reptiles, bees and butterflies friendly plants, and the most important ingredient a pesticide and chemical free garden.

This is wildest corner of my garden, the 4 by 6 foot area of the garden is anchor by an old hallow coconut tree trunk.  This part of the garden is home to a garden snake, an opossum mom made the tree trunk home and many frogs and lizards.




Unintended consequences, the air plant on this palm has over the years been home to many bird’s nest.  It also has become home of many of my bromeliads and orchids collection.





Happy Labor Day 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

New this year a kitchen garden

This year I’m doing a winter kitchen garden instead of a vegetable garden.  Last year most of my vegetables did poorly while the salad greens and herbs did well.  I’m tired of growing tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and other vegies and end up getting little in return. 
I’m starting early this year, weeding and turning over the soil, later in September I’ll add more soil and some additives and will start planting in early October.  I need suggestions as to what will do well in the shade; this area of the garden only gets a couple of hours of sun in the winter.



Before

This week at the DragonFly garden.

Blooming this week
Dragonfruit




August is a good time for butterfly watching; here are a few I was able to photograph this week.