Sunday, September 29, 2013

Getting a Little Duck Strange

The hubby went to town the other day to get the car fixed & buy groceries. The story is much more complicated than the simple: that's not what happened - but at least he made it home & he bought the 1 thing on the grocery list we can't eat. A teapot... but what a teapot!!

It's a DUCK TEAPOT!! Who would have thunk you could find something like that just wandering through a 2nd hand store?

I had previously found this darling green ceramic duck (not a goose) & sneaked it home with all our other groceries & sundries. Quite cute & not too tacky.

I'm a little concerned now that we've started buying each other 'duck things' that other people will think they can surprise us with random duck knick-knacks. We may have just opened Pandora's box to a world of wacky-quacky...

Friday, September 27, 2013

Harvest Time!

~ Scarlett runner beans ~
 Spring & Autumn are the best seasons for growing things out on the Wet Coast - the summers are just too dry & cool/foggy. Hard to plan a garden around that, but I'm working on it!

Currently, I'm eating fresh runner beans. Love that I can keep picking & they will continue to produce! Plus, with some of these beans, we only need 2 or 3 each & that satisfies us for dinner. (I like to munch on a couple in the mornings when I'm hanging with the ducks)

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Colours in the Fall Garden - Part 4~

~ rose bloom ~
 September is a great month - sometimes you get plants that put out a 2nd or 3rd bloom, as long as the weather remains warm enough & the sun shines.

I purchased 2 rose bushes this summer when I attended the Lavender Harvest in Metchosin, BC. It was purely a spur-of-the-moment decision as I really know nothing about growing roses out on the coast. (what do you do to over-winter them? Oh wait - we don't get winter...)

Anyway - I didn't wait too long before I planted them & they have rewarded me with my first rose blooms! Creamy white with pale pink edging & yellow splashes in the center. Plus, I can feed the flowers to the ducks - they haven't yet figured out they can reach the petals on their own - which is a good thing!
~ blue hydrangea ~
They hydrangeas are still blue, although with all this rain we've gotten this past week, I'm not sure how long they will last on the shrub. They look so nice over the winter as they dry into a deep purple colour. I'll have to go for a walk-about & see what the neighbours are doing with theirs.
~ gladiola ~

I planted gladiola bulbs a few years ago & had some wonderful flowers. But then the packaging told me to dig them out each fall & re-plant them each spring. Sounds like too much work for me!! So I left a bunch in different locations & am randomly rewarded with the odd bloom here & there. Some will bloom in late August & this one decided to bloom this week. I've brought it into the house to enjoy & we'll see if that bulb will produce again next year.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Duck Update

 Well, today the darling ducks are 20 weeks old - considered 'adult' ducks now...

We've had torrential rains over the last week or so - which means large puddles & new challenges.

We installed a 'sun porch' with 'wind & rain shield' on their deck... Yes, the ducks now have a covered deck...

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Harvest Time!

~ lemon sorrel ~
This year the lemon sorrel & wild arugula flourished in the gardens now that the deer have remained on the other side of the fence. (this will be a re-occurring theme in the gardens from now on!)

Monday, September 16, 2013

Colours in the Fall Garden - Part 3

~ mystery flower ~
 I love growing new plants - new to me, new to the neighbourhood & sometimes new to the person who sold/gave me the seeds/plant.

This spring I went to a Seedy Saturday event & purchased a package of seeds that I was told was mislabeled. They had no idea what the plant would be.

I purchased it because it was supposed to be purple flowers in the fall. 'Ta-Da....' That's what they came up to be - but I had no idea what they were & none of my books was any help in identifying this one. I turned to my on-line gardening friends...
~ purple toad flax ~

It didn't take very long before the proper id was found: purple toad flax (Linaria). I love the little, tiny flowers - and they are small! About the size of your pinkie fingernail!! They look a little like snap dragons & larkspur...

They are a perennial that I now have to find new homes for as all the plants I grew (well over a dozen) are in my veggie beds where they have protection from curious ducks...

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Colours in the Fall Garden - Part 2

~ marigold ~
 Another great colour in the Fall Garden are the yellows & oranges & the best of these (at least in mine) are the marigolds.

LOVE-LOVE-LOVE marigolds! Yes, even their strange & strong scent.

I also found out that you can feed marigold petals to your ducks & it will make the yolks a deeper, richer yellow/orange colour & probably give them a boost in minerals or vitamins...

~ marigold ~

~ tiger lily & Helenium ~
The tiger lilies did very well this year - I've been saving all the little pips from in between the leaves & planting them helter-skelter around the property. It may take a few years, but they eventually grow large enough bulbs to start producing flowers & more pips. (not a very technical term)

These tall & skinny plants fit in between the other plants & can add texture & height to the fall garden. I did it initially to hide the flowers from the deer, but now that I don't have to worry about the flower-munchers, I can expand my planting of lilies.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Colours in the Fall Garden - Part 1

~ Autumn Joy sedum ~
I'm only a few weeks behind - in everything it seems - but I do have some photos of what the gardens look like (or did a couple weeks ago).

I love the Fall Garden - while it looks a little tired, the colours are richer.

The Sedums have recovered from the deer grazing - yes, the deer ate these every year just as they were coming into flower. 
~ Globe thistle ~

The globe thistles are stunning! Love that they are spikey from their flowers down to their leaves! I hope to divide them up this fall & spread them around a bit - mix & match with the other textures in the beds.

~ lavender ~
The lavender flowered again & this time I left most of the few sprigs of blooms for the bees that are still around. It's also nice to find a stalk, pick it & rub it through your hands for a lazy afternoon pick-me up.