Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night. (Rainer Maria Rilke)

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Rainy Day Inside Flowers

It's a rainy, dark and inside sort of day today.  So I thought I'd show some of the pretty flowers that have graced my tables inside the house, for a change.  

Here I've got some of my favorite flowers of all time - white freesia.  And I do think the white ones have the best fragrance!  I'm not sure if it's true or not, but that's been my experience.  I'm sure it all depends on the source.  As you can see, I'm not very tidy about my paper stuff - I think it reflects how my mind works if I don't meditate enough!  Yikes!

My husband brought me these beautiful orchids one day.  He said the "flower guy" was in the parking lot of his workplace and wanted to get rid of stuff quick, so he got them for a really good price. !!!!!  Well, I won't complain, he did bring me some lovely flowers, even if it wasn't his original idea, lol!  These are dyed a pretty blue and they lasted a very long time.

Here is an absolutely gorgeous cymbidium that I got at the grocery store.  It was marked down to half price, so I couldn't refuse.  I just love the foliage on these, they spread out and drape so wonderfully and make for a big statement.  

That cymbidium lived for a long time, but eventually I ended up getting a new lime green one.

And then a pink one.  Well, during all that time I figured out I couldn't give the cymbies what they needed to thrive, which is cool and humid.  I've got cool and dry inside and hot and humid outside.  Aaaarrrgh!  I did talk to several orchid enthusiasts and they all said they had given up on growing them as they have difficult conditions.  I did find an Aussie grower that had amazing success and I think she must be an enchanted green witch and I want to know all of her ways! 

A fallen branch at the local garden store that the salesperson was kind enough to let me "rescue".

 Love those mini orchids!

Orchids galore!  (ok, enough orchids....on to other things)

A couple of years ago I was in the local garden club flower show and was surprised to take a first place for my bouquet.

It was held at the West Indies Home Collection store in Naples. We had to set our table and place our arrangements.  I was going for a simple British Colonial look.  I had to laugh as I had used an inferior florist oasis as a base and my flowers were shifting around as the judges were walking the floor.  

It was fun to work with the ginger and protea.

Recently, I bought some pink alstroemeria.  I sure wish I had a big enough garden to grow cutting flowers.  I always loved bringing in huge bunches of flowers from our garden as a kid.  

I love that they last a long time.

Lilies always provide brilliant color and a tropical statement.

I could provide a few more shots, but I think it's time for tea and a good book.  This is a lovely Assam from India - perfect for a little caffeine to keep me awake so I can enjoy my British mystery.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Too Hot to Garden

I took a little break from gardening over the 4th and just kept extending my break because it is so crazy hot here!  I couldn't help but notice I've got a second flush of the dwarf gardenia flowers - how delightful!  

The impatiens are still quite lush considering they're out front and get the harsh afternoon light.  They're under the date palm and the fronds hang over them a bit so at least they're getting a little shade.

I've got several pots of impatien starts crammed under the front walkway bench.  I always try to have some fresh ones growing so I can keep them going in the summer in all the shady parts of the yard.  They look so tropical and add such bright color.

A couple of years ago I tried the New Guinea Impatiens - wow, did they look gorgeous in their nursery pots!  I'm still not sure what I did wrong, but they didn't make it and I've never tried this kind again.  But they sure were pretty while they lasted.

Well, when we first moved here about five years ago, this is how the front beds looked - WOW, right?  The house had sat abandoned for a year.  Somebody mowed the grass, but left everything else.

So we yanked everything out except the palms.  That "British teeth edging" isn't my favorite, but we left it for the time being.  (And it's still there of course!)  My apologies to my English friends and anyone else for using such an unflattering cliche about the dental hygiene of the British - I'm sorry, but it did make me think of that and made me grin.  Of course, I truly don't think their teeth look like that!  

So now when I look out the front windows, we're back to having the jungle around the palm in the front bed.  I've really got to give it some shape out there.  Although I like the free-form look, it's gotten way out-of-control, even for a naturalist like me.  I'll post a "full frontal" pic later on when I get it looking sharp enough for photographing!  

We had ripped out a lot of Ti plants and I wish we would've kept them.  That was back when I really didn't care much for how they looked.

Now I think they are so pretty with the hot pink, maroon and lighter pinks against all the different colors of green.

I am such a hot pink fiend :)

And they look kind of cool with the sun shining through them too.

I'm still waiting for the hummingbirds to show up.  I faithfully change my feeder syrup every other day and I haven't seen any since I started hanging this out last fall.  They were showing up in this area, near the Ixora after being at the neighbors Firebush, so I thought this would be a good place, but I haven't had any visits that I know of.  Guess I need to plant some Firebush on this side of the yard!