Thursday, May 28, 2009

Today around the garden

The weather has been wet for seven straight days; we went from a record setting drought to a Noah’s ark type of floods in a one-week time.

Canna Lily

A rare event all my cannas are blooming at the same time

Grass on steroids
This is what happens in South Florida when it rains for seven days straight.

This little guy followed me from Disney World.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

EPCOT flower and garden festival

I returned yesterday from my visit to the Flower and Garden Festival held every year at Epcot Center in Disney World. This year's event was by far the best ever.
There were amazing topiaries everywhere in the park, all of them made exclusively from plants and flowers.
The butterfly pavillion was out of this world. In the butterfly house were cocoons, many of them opening up and releasing their precious contents and hundreds of mature butterflies flying around.
The floating gardens
The Pixie Hollow Garden where Tinkerbell and her fairie friends live was a favorite of my family.

Displays on green gardening with great ideas for conservationists.

At World Showcase, the displays featured each country's native gardens.

Japan was all about bonsais with some incredible examples of this ancient Japanese art, some many decades old!

Italy featured container gardens--aren't they lovely?

In Germany, the main attraction was the miniature garden and railroad.

China had this magnificent dragon created from all types of bromeliads.

My family and I had a great time and we are already planning next year's visit for the 2010 festival, to be held March 3 – May 16. If you have never been, I strongly recommended this delightful and beautiful exhibit.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I am going to Disney World for some R and R

This is the time of the year for the EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival at Walt Disney World.
I will be taking lots of pictures.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Wet garden

The rainy season has arrived ( YEAAAAAAA!!!!)

Lots of rain yesterday, today and the rest of the week, and all is welcome.

The rain barrels are full, the garden is wet and all the outside work must wait.
There is something magical about a wet garden, don’t you think?

Friday, May 15, 2009

GBBD for May 15

I am late with my bloom day pictures; I totally forgot that today was the 15 of May, how time flies when one is busy at work.

The star this month is my Rangoon Creeper vine, the new flowers are white in the morning and turn red by the end of the day, the aroma is intoxicating. This plant is my favorite among all my favorite plants.

Also blooming are the white begonias.

The purple allamanda is beginning the summer blooms.

Last of the white hollyhocks.



Last but not least my powderpuff tree

Monday, May 11, 2009

A garden is always changing, always evolving.

My garden has evolved throughout the 18-plus years I have lived in this house. One would think that with such a small garden I would have completed the main look by now but there is always much more to do as I attempt to transform my new ideas on to the landscape. This year, for the first time, I have put all my spring/summer, 2009, projects on paper but with no strict deadlines other than finishing by the end of the year. The plans are:

1 - Build a trellis along the back wall of my house to support my purple passion vine. I don't know what I was thinking when I attempted to grow this vine along a thin length twine; healthy flowering vines need stronger support to grow fully.

2 - This corner of the garden definitely needs a face-lift. The giant white bird of paradise is overgrown and the bench needs a paint job (my wife wants a new one but that is NOT going to happen since it's not in the budget). I want to make this corner a more inviting place for tranquility and meditation. I have an extra Water feature in the garage that would be perfect for this corner but I would need to buy a solar water pump to power it (and my wife says THAT is not in the budget!).

3 - Expand my vegetable garden for the fall growing season. I need to take out some of the grass and add enriched soil (maybe from my compost).

(old picture)

4 - Finally, the biggest project is for the front garden. I get a lot of nice comments from my neighbors and visitors about my front garden and as a gardener it is satisfying to see other people enjoy the work I put into my garden. Since it's the most visible, the front garden is definitely always a work in progress. My plan is to expand the front garden, reducing the amount of grass and adding more sun-loving and drought-resistant plants. I am also thinking about enclosing the garden with a small iron fence--not to keep people out but to make the area cozy and inviting. This project would be the most expensive of the four and we will have to see whether the budget will allow it at the end of the year!

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Happy Mothers' Day to my wife, my mom, and all the moms in the gardening blogosphere!

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Propagating plants from cuttings

First let me make it clear, when God was giving out patience, I didn’t get the memo. That’s the reason that propagating plants has never been part of my gardening experience.
My 96-year-old Dad on the other hand has been blessed with an abundance of patience; that’s why he is the king of propagating. The man can turn any weak cutting into a beautiful tree or shrub. Many of the plants in my garden started as cuttings in Dad’s garden. My father is from the old school of gardening; he believes that buying plants is a sin and he is never shy about asking anyone for a cutting of plants he would like to see growing in his garden.
This week I decided to give the practice of propagating plants from cuttings a try and purchased rooting hormones, I got cuttings from my neighbor’s red hibiscus, my own Persian shield, and a cool plant that I don’t know the name of from another neighbor’s garden.
If I am successful it could bring my gardening hobby to a new level of satisfaction and it will surely help my wallet during these tough economic times!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

RAIN and more RAIN YEAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!

We woke up this morning to a cloudy and rainy day; we haven’t had any significant rain since sometime in January. This year once again we are in the middle of a severe drought, so this rain is welcome even if it comes on a Saturday my one and only full gardening day.

The rain barrels are working and full with 100 gallons of rainwater. I can’t believe it took me so long to get them, they are great and I strongly recommended

Flowers on a rainy day.

Rangoon creeper.

Mexican petunias.

Blue daze.
No work in the garden today so I am heading to the garage for a major clean-up.