Monday, April 30, 2012

Blooms from Next Year

This is Zephyranthes grandiflora common name rain lily.  She blooms numerous times throughout the summer and autumn always after a rain that follows a dry period.

This is Achillea common name yarrow.  Am trying the red variety, will try to dry some to use with Christmas decorations.

White salvia, so hardy and dependable.  Blue variety is awaiting planting.  The bees love this flower.

An heirloom Iris from my Uncle Karl's garden.

Jackamelia clematis and the Ballerina rose.  I planted these together for AppleJack and his daughter the ballerina.  I call them Jack and the dancer.

Hen and her chicks.

Tomatoes--the hope of things to come.  Yes those would be weeds growing in the background.  I have lots of them, want to come help weed?  Wear some protection, the dreaded poison ivy is not fun!

When I took my walk through Next Year, I noticed bloom buds on the day lilies.  Looking forward to seeing the different varieties and deciding who needs to be transplanted.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

The roof is finished!

 The roof is finished!  Music City has been having many hail storms and roofers are busy, busy, busy, repairing and replacing the damaged roofs.  

Am only stitching House #3 and if the stitching stars are in alignment, this should soon be in the waiting to be framed stash.

In spite of all the counting challenges, I have enjoyed stitching this piece.  It has made me rethink stitching the entire piece.  Yikes!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Ingredients for gardening

A gentle rain


Amended soil

The correct amount of fertilizer

                                                          Right plant, right place

Throw in some kindness from Mother Nature, Blessings from the ultimate gardener, and an earthly gardener with a strong back.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Leaves of Three

"Leaves of three, quickly flee."  Grandmother Bessie used this quote to teach me about poison ivy.  I learned from an early age to identify poison ivy and poison oak, or else suffer the consequences.

While gardening yesterday, I had my first 2012 encounter with both poison ivy and poison oak.  Normally when I do garden work, I wear both long sleeved shirt and long pants, I broke my own guideline yesterday.  The reason I wear both long sleeved shirt and pants is to protect myself against, ultra violet rays, thorny rose bushes, jabs from holly bushes, and the dreaded poison ivy and oak.  Who knew gardening could be hazardous?

The good news, I have an extremely mild case, I identified the rash early and began treatment early.  So hopefully, the rash will be a nuisance today and gone tomorrow.

AppleJack has a l o n g and painful history with poison ivy.  Here is one of his many painful encounters with the dreaded ivy. 

It began with Queen Anne's Lace.  Queen Anne's Lace is one of my favorite plants.  It is a common plant and grows wild in ditches, dry fields and open areas.  I use it as filler material with other cut flowers when making arrangements.  AppleJack had gotten himself into the husband dogie house and was trying to think of a way to get himself out.  Knowing I liked Queen Anne's Lace, AppleJack decided to pick some of the wild flower which was growing along side the road and bring home for me to use. 

While picking the wild flower, AppleJack had an encounter with poison ivy.  By the time he got home with the Queen Anne's Lace, the poison ivy he contacted on his ankles was traveling north and had already passed through some tender territory and had reached his waist and was still advancing. 

AppleJack was a red, swollen, itchy mess!  Realizing the poison ivy was determined to spread, we decided a visit to the doc in the box aka Minute Clinic was in order.  One steroid shot later, a prescription, and instructions for cool soaks in the tub, we went home.  The next morning, his case of poison ivy was worse.  Yes, he has a terrible reaction with each encounter.  A second trip to the doc in the box, a second steroid shot, more meds, he was finally beginning to get some relief.

Each time we see Queen Anne's Lace we have a chuckle and say "one of the most painful and expensive weeds I ever picked."

Remember the wise words of Grandmother Bessie "leaves of three, quickly flee."

Thursday, April 26, 2012


Gardening.  There are so many things to say.  It is rewarding and hard work, requires commitment and patience and diligence.  There is luck and timing involved. In my case, it is a bloody miracle anything survives, grows or blooms.  I think I have killed more plants than post people have planted.  I love gardening, so I struggle on, doing some things right, falling asleep with gardening books on my head, searching through Google and consulting with gardening friends.

Music City had a cold snap this week, causing gardeners to scurry to cover plants to protect them from the low temps and wind.  In my walk through Next Year the only thing which suffered cold damage was the foliage on the knock out roses.

Here is Next Year April 2012

 This is Anthony Waters Spirea.
This is Oak Leaf Hydrangea. This is one of my favorite plants--those green blooms will mature into chartreuse then white.  The blooms stay on the plant and in the fall they are a beautiful cinnamon and the birds love them.

This is a Mophead hydrangea.  Am hoping it will produce a range of colors from pink to purple to blue to white.  I fed both the hydrangea's this spring and they seem to be thriving.  Whew!  Maybe I can put this one in the good gardener column.

These are the knock out roses.  I gave them a hard pruning in the fall and was hoping I had not killed them.  A good spring feeding seemed to have helped them.  There is some leaf damage due to the cold.  Love me some knock outs--they are hardy!

This is the Ballerina rose from the Antique Rose Emporium.  She has performed well this year.  I was hoping jackmanii clematis was going to bloom with Miss Ballerina but Jack had his own plans.

This clematis is Comtesse de Bouchaud!  With a name like that she should be a beauty!  Come on Comtesse don't disappoint me.

This is a late blooming Iris which came from my Uncle's garden.

If the weather cooperates and my back holds out, I have more gardening plans in store for the weekend.  Planting ground cover working with the Japanese Maple, maybe a trip to the Gardening Center for annuals, planting tomatoes and . . .  a gardeners work is never finished.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Yes, Spring Creek is a real place

Spring Creek is located in Township 8 in Madison County in the Western North Carolina mountains.  The county's northern border is the state of Tennessee.
Spring Creek is a tributary of the French Broad River with a length of approximately 17 miles. (It joins the French Broad River in Hot Springs, North Carolina.)  The French Broad River and Holston River join to form the Tennessee River.  The Tennessee River is the largest tributary of the Ohio River, which is a tributary of the Mississippi River.

Spring Creek, Madison County, North Carolina was formed in 1851 from Yancey and Buncombe Counties.  It was named for James Madison, the fourth President of the United States.
Max Patch is a famous section of the Appalachian Trail.  The mountain was cleared in 1800's and used as pasture for grazing sheep and cattle.

Asheville North Carolina is a 38 mile drive from Spring Creek.  George Washington Vanderbilt built his summer home in Asheville, he named the home Biltmore.  Biltmore is the largest home in America 175,000 square feet!  The house has four acres of floor space, 250 rooms, 34 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, and 65 fireplaces.  The basement has a swimming pool, gymnasium, bowling alley, servents' quarters and kitchen.  The landscape architect was Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park in New York City.  Vanderbilt officially opened his home to family and friends on Christmas Eve. 

And. . . Great Grandmother Sarah Miranda Plemons was born in Spring Creek on December 11, 1855.  She married John Palmer Price.  Five of their nine sons were born in Spring Creek.  They moved from Spring Creek North Carolina to Emert's Cove Tennessee in January 1885.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Under Construction

Construction continues on house #3 of Hawk Run Hollow.

Does anyone recognize this house?  It is the home of Mary and Abraham Lincoln in Springfield, Illinois.  The colors in Mary and Abe's home are similiar to the colors in house #3 and the house styles are also similiar.  I'm thinking the colors and house style must have been very popular during the 1850's.

Monday, April 23, 2012

My House of Hawk Run Hollow

I'm still working on my stitching mojo.  After numerous counting errors, I am finally beginning to make some progress on my house of Hawk Run Hollow.

This is house #3 of Carriage House Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.  I am so enjoying this stitch--fabric, fibers, and design, I am tempted to stitch the entire piece.  Whoa, did I just say that?  AppleJack just rolled his eyes and said, "maybe you should sleep on that choice."   I chose to stitch House #3 because it reminds me of Grandmother Sarah Miranda's house.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Retail Therapy

I made a road trip on Friday.  My Mother lives in East Tennessee and the main purpose of my visit was to visit her.

I had hear and read about a retail shop in Clinton called The Speckled Hen.  Betty, Through my Back Door often writes in her blog about The Hen and it looked like a place I would enjoy.  The Speckled Hen is located on Market Street in Clinton.  If you like antiques, tea rooms, a friendly visit with Betty, and streets lined with beautiful flowers Market Street is a place you will want to visit. 

The Speckled Hen did not disappoint, it is a lovely shop filled with primitives, colonial, early American and antiques.  This pewter plate is one item I added to my shopping cart.

Another item I added was a table square from Family Heirloom Weavers.  The pattern is called United/Divided.  In each corner is woven "United We Stand, Divided We Fall."  Adds a nice touch to the dry sink in the Grandmother's Room.

On May 5th, Market Street will be hosting the 8th Annual Clinch River Spring Antique Fair.  Hmm, is there another road trip in my near future?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Jo Morton Pottery Shards

Since it is the third Saturday of the month, that means it is Jo Morton Little Women class time.  The next quilt assignment is Pottery Shards.  Below is a photo of the teachers.

Aren't the colors and fabrics awesome?  The teacher is a precision quilter!  The quilt may look simple, it is not.  There will be many hours of quilting work to complete this class.

Scrappiness was the quilt assignment from last class. (I called mine Ohio Star).  This is the teachers.

This completed quilt is Carmen's--fantastic job!

This is Terri's quilt--beautiful!

This is also Terri's Yankee Doodle, appliqué quilt.  WOW!  Terri has been a busy girl.  Terri is a working Mother and said she appliquéd stars while she was watching her children play softball.

The lady who made this quilt won the door prize last month.  She took parts of the charm pack she won, added some of her own fabric and ta da!  Very nice.

All quilting eyes are on the American Quilter's Society (AQS) Show and Contest which runs from April 25 to April 28 in Paducah, Kentucky.  AppleJack said his wallet needed to recover before he turned me loose shopping in this venue!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Mother's Peonies

Red peonies

White peonies

Pink peonies

These are photos of the peonies growing in my Mother's long border beds.  Mother has had these peonies for years!  I am hoping one day my peonies will produce blooms this large.

Delicate violas and pansies also from Mother's garden.

These peonies were growing in a container on the sidewalk near where Mother lives.  The merchants on Market Street in Clinton had filled containers with many varieties of plants and all were thriving.

Spring in Tennessee has been glorious!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Thistle Manor

Thistle Manor

Freebie by Blackbird Designs

An overdyed fiber by Gentle Arts

I think it was awfully nice of the Blackbird Girls to create a design just for Thistle Manor (he he)