the prettiest poppies

i was delighted to see this raspberry pink poppy blooming for the first time in our garden a few mornings ago:

i’m glad i got a few shots of it then, because this evening’s deluge of rain has certainly stripped all the petals off by now. i’m not sure what variety it is as it was a passalong plant, either from my master gardener friends elmer or ginny. and i’m guessing if it was from ginny, then there’s a good chance it was from elmer! here’s to you dear friend… may your healing unfurl as effortlessly as the blooms after a spring rain. xox.

in the garden of good intentions

i know it’s been a while since i posted last… i know it’s bloom day… i know it’s blog action day…  i just have way too much in the wagon these days to deal with it all… but am i surprised?  nope.  but i’m still here, plugging, transplanting and trying my best to prune a lot of it away…

in the meantime, i am surprised to see this gal FINALLY blooming.  you can grow dahlias in texas, but it’s a challenge.


Dahlia 'Surprise' with bonus chrysalis treasure


since i can’t make up my mind which i like best, i’ll leave you with two quotes on intentions to ponder; both refer to gardens and are from individuals whose learning/working/living philosophies i’ve admired:

a garden is a complex of aesthetic and plastic intentions; and the plant is, to a landscape artist, not only a plant – rare, unusual, ordinary or doomed to disappearance – but it is also a color, a shape, a volume or an arabasque in itself

– roberto burle marx

a garden requires patient labor and attention.  plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or fulfill good intentions.  they thrive because someone expended effort on them.

– liberty hyde bailey

growth ring no.1

today marks a year in the blogosphere for grwhryrpltd, and i wanted to celebrate the making of its first growth ring with you.  while i don’t have any images of cross-cut trees to share, i found these lovely growth rings this morning:

Stereum ostrea, turkey tail fungus

there’s nothing like a walk in the woods or stroll in the garden to find a bit of inspiration and gratitude… thank you, dear readers, for coming along with me.  here’s to another year of growing where you’re planted…

gobble gobble!

i took this picture last january during one of the locavores tours, and have been waiting patiently to share it with you.  i hope it makes you smile as much as it did me.

gobble gobble, rrrwoof!

mrs. t, the turkey in the photo above, has seen many happy thanksgivings.  from what her owners told us, she will continue to do so because she has such an amiable personality, as her canine friend so obviously proves.

happy thanksgiving!

a sweet gathering

it’s someone’s very special (60th) birthday today… and mr. grwhryrpltd went out of his way for this one.  a trip to mexico for the gifts, a large hand made shipping container to get it to the final destination, and two flights later we had one heck of a surprised birthday girl:

af_bday pinata
the bewitching pinata is strung while the lucha libre mask is donned
af_bday pinata_007a
she strikes...
af_bday pinata_013a
and strikes again... (arm down)
af_bday pinata_019a
a change of implements was eventually needed, but the pinata is finally down!
a sweet gathering...
with tasty treats for you...

you deserve it, happy birthday jan!  the weekend went too fast, but the memories will last and last…

summer break…

the past few weeks i’ve been in michigan for a summer sojourn, primarily to spend time with my parents.  i had intentions of posting a blog or two while there, but the speed of the local internet connection made working in the garden much more fulfilling.  so i missed posting for 1.) august’s garden blogger’s bloom day, 2.) the finding of a kitty nest in the old compost pile, 3.) a dear friend’s baby shower, 4.) gwen frostic, 5.) my sister’s birthday and 6.) the untimely death of my trusty nikon camera.

1.) august’s garden blogger’s bloom day was exciting, as i was able to see one of my all-time favorite plantings, eight to nine years since it’s original planting date (how can that be…)

Echinacea, Sedum and Perovskia cushion grandma's garden bench
Echinacea, Sedum, Perovskia and Miscanthus cushion grandma's garden bench

the Echinacea (coneflower, probably Magnus species) have done very well for themselves, pushing out the Perovskia, Miscanthus, Sedum and Carex to the periphery.  elsewhere in the garden, the Rudbeckia (black-eyed susan) have taken center stage:

Rudbeckia's closeup
Rudbeckia's closeup

if you look closely in the image above, you can see one of the many critters that have made mom’s garden home.  here he is again, for his closeup:

frog in the garden
green frog (Rana clamitans melanota) in the garden

i’m guessing that s/he is a green frog, but i’m no herpetologist, best leave that to the state experts.

2.) speaking of critters, my mom and i had a surprise find in the old compost bin… a nest of kitties, from a visiting barn cat who thought it’d be a great place to rear her young:

a nest of kitties - two gray and white, one brown and black
a nest of kitties - two gray and white, one brown and black

i checked on them often, and found the momma cat feeding them on several occasions.  but one day there was only one gray and white kitty left, who had crawled out of the nest and was laying in the hot sun.  a friend of mine and i thought it was dead, but when we prodded it, oh how it cried!  great, now what?  a call into the local vet suggested we return him to the nest, as the mom was just moving her kittens elsewhere, and would most likely return to get him that evening.  well, she didn’t, as i found him the next morning nestled into a corner of the compost bin’s upright pallet wall.  good thing we have friends with experience in these matters… friends who are willing to travel all the way out to the farm to help the kitty, with lunch in hand (formula for the kitty and sandwiches for us)!

sarah works her magic on little mister blue eyes
sarah works her magic on little mister blue eyes

sarah has already rescued five kitties, and was willing to try again, in the hopes of giving him to her father-in-law who recently lost his cat of 21 years.  i can’t wait to see how he grows… thanks sarah, you are the best!

3.) a dear friend of mine is expecting her first baby, and i was able to attend her baby shower up north with lots of her friends and family.  here’s what i made for baby mac:

hooded baby blanket, knit in blue sky alpaca's cotton yarn
hooded baby blanket, knit in blue sky alpaca's cotton yarn

this blanket should grow with the little boy as he gets older, as it is generously sized (modeled below by my 15 year-old cousin):

zander models the hooded blanket
zander models the hooded blanket

4.) while up north i had the privilege of going to gwen frostic, a well known michigan artist and stationer.  while gwen is no longer with us, her artwork continues to be printed on heidelberg presses using the original wood and metal blocks she created.  sadly, the property looks like it could use a serious restoration effort, both on the shop and surrounding landscape.  i hope the value of this michigan jewel is recognized by an entity that can continue to share her simply beautiful work.

5.) my sister’s birthday occurred while i was up north, so here is my belated birthday picture post for you, dear sister:

a feat full of birthday greetings from lake michigan
a feat full of birthday greetings from lake michigan

over the years your feet have been to shores and mountain tops all over the world… but never forget that you will always have lake in you…

6.) i took the last image on my cell phone, as my trusty nikon coolpix 4500 met an untimely death on this trip.  yup, the sneaky cam has gone onto higher megapixel pastures, as its leap from a four foot tall bathroom dresser onto a tile floor (while concealed in my lop-sided purse) rendered it in a systemic error of crunching internal noises… oh sneaky cam, you’ve been such a great camera for so long, how will i ever replace your rotating lens?  here’s to many captured memories…

the sneaky cam at rest
the sneaky cam at rest

without a decent camera to share images with you here, it may take a while for me to post again.  be sure to check back often – i’m not a huge twitter user, but if interesting things are going on, i’ll be sure to mention them there, as they’ll also appear at the upper left hand corner of my blog.  thanks so much for reading and looking at my work.  here’s to a beautiful autumn ahead…

if wishes were flowers…

miss becky
miss becky

‘might i,’ quavered mary, ‘might i have a bit of earth?’ … ‘to plant seeds in – to make things grow – to see them come alive,’ mary faltered…

‘you can have as much earth as you want,’ he said.  ‘you remind me of some one else who loved the earth and things that grow.  when you see a bit of earth you want,’ with something like a smile, ‘take it child, and make it come alive.’

– frances hodgson burnett, the secret garden

happy birthday mom.

daddy’s girls

good morning dad… this one’s for you:

daddy's girls
daddy's girls, back in the day

how LUCKY are YOU to have four girls, now women, who love you so…  especially me:

babe + dad on her wedding day
babe + dad on her wedding day

i wish i could be there to hang out with you today… to go for a plane ride, hop on the motor bike, or hit a bucket of golf balls… i’ve always cherished the time we’ve spent together, and look forward to the next time we can.  i love you dad.

happy father’s day!

love me tender

…love me tender, love me sweet, never let me go

you have made my life complete, and i love you so…

a handsome man was mr. long snout...
mr. long snout... such a handsome guy...

… love me tender, love me dear, tell me you are mine

i’ll be yours through all the years, till the end of time…

we’ll miss you zekers… hang in there v and b, we’re thinking of you…