First freeze

Last weekend, the garden woke to 29° F. It was quite a shock to the garden, but the gardener was secretly relieved at the first freeze. Between two motorcycle trips, a train trip, moving my mother to her new home in an independent living facility, and selling her house–insert sigh–I am exhausted in the purest sense of the word.

Of love and late-summer flowers

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about love and late-summer flowers. I’m not sure what brought on these musings, but I think it may have something to do with turning the big double nickel last week. I’m a late-summer flower myself. I’m also helping my mother sell her home and move into independent living, letting…

Raising Monarch caterpillars

I can’t remember when I started raising Monarch caterpillars. I’m thinking maybe five years ago, and I’m no expert, but I’ve learned a few things. First, raising Monarch caterpillars from egg to butterfly is a huge commitment of time, energy and milkweed. Second, If you want to save the Monarch butterfly, plant milkweed. And, don’t…

Caterpillar rescue

Late summer is butterfly season at Little Cedar. It’s also caterpillar rescue season. As you probably already know, Monarch butterflies are in trouble, and I believe it’s backyard and community gardeners who will eventually save the day. At least that’s what I tell myself as I bring Monarch eggs and tiny caterpillars indoors every day….

Tomato season in high gear

Tomato season is in high gear at Little Cedar. You know we’re calling our property Little Cedar, right? That’s because my sister-in-law, Maria, said our garden reminded her of Big Cedar Lodge when she visited us in spring, and she dubbed our garden “Little Cedar.” We loved the name so much it stuck. In fact,…

Rain-soaked garden

Most of Oklahoma got rain night before last. The rain-soaked garden woke up yesterday morning to singing birds, crawling caterpillars and me stalking it with my camera. There is nothing more pleasurable than spring in an Oklahoma garden, except, maybe fall, but spring is being extra good to us this year. Rain in Oklahoma is cause…

A bevy of backyard birds

Bill and I were standing in the living room at the back window gazing outside as our son walked by. “What on Earth are you two doing?” he asked. “Watching birds,” we said, in unison. Bill and I then turned and grinned at each other. I added, “It’s what old people do.” We then laughed. Our…

Return to paradise

A week ago Sunday, we drove in from Tomball and Sugar Land, Texas and returned to paradise. I spoke in both locations which was tons of fun. Loved meeting all the members of the Sugar Land Garden Club and discussing how to attract twenty-thirty somethings to their club. I’m writing an article on the same topic this week….

Summer flowers for summer heat

July temperatures are above normal today, but it is the middle of an Oklahoma summer so I’m not surprised. This post started out as one for Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day, but I missed the 15th so now it’s about summer flowers for summer heat instead. You can’t go wrong with these tough beauties. I don’t like summer heat, but…

July garden chores

The page on the calendar has turned. It’s already July, which came in on a flood in Oklahoma. Today is gray, but I don’t mind. Gray skies bring cooler weather. July will be hot and humid soon so enjoy it while you can and get those July garden chores done. It’s a completely different garden…