Garden plants, house plants, spiders, and hammocks

September 29 – Ten o’clock here and we have just had breakfast, a bit late but like our son we like to get up a bit late some mornings. One of our food items each morning is a few chestnuts from our tree, and I am enjoying them.

datura pods

Prickly datura pods

While Chris picked tomatoes yesterday, I dismantled the big mass of white datura plants which had completely stopped blooming and had no more buds. They they were still loaded with their prickly seed containers, which doubtless have dropped a myriad of seeds into the garden where they will sprout next year. There was a whole garden cart of the plants, which I had to cut up in sections to disentangle them from the tomato plant that had grown up among them.

The tomato plant has been bearing very heavily and had long vines that grew all through those daturas. Last year our grandson Kevin gave us one of these tomato plants which he called Pearly Pink; it bore very well and must have shed a seed or two that grew this year. The tomatoes are not large but are prolific and a pretty pink color. I’ll be saving some seed so we can grow it again next year.

Garden spider in the asparagus patch

Garden spider in the asparagus patch

Chris went out early and got a couple of good pictures of the garden spider in our asparagus bed. The spider is an argiope, of which there are several varieties, but the common one is the black and gold garden spider which gets quite large and plump. This one has a different color pattern and I don’t see that one listed in our spider book. I’ve been watching a couple of big ones in their webs in one of our clematis vines, but suddenly they were gone and near their webs were large papery sacs full of eggs. The mother dies after laying the eggs. The young hatch inside the sacs in the fall but spend the winter in the sacs before emerging in the spring. We have one of the sacs in the kitchen but I guess we had better put it outside as the young ones may think it is spring in our warm house and come out and be all over the place.

Dale in hammock with chicken soup

Enjoying the hammock and a good book

Chris surprised me yesterday by coming out in the afternoon with a couple of big cushions and some reading material and saying we were going to go and lie in our hammocks and read and rest for a while. So we did, at least we lay down and rested but did not read. Well, Chris never read but eventually I did for a while. She ended up admiring the big cloud over our barn and way above our maple trees by the house, and after a while went up to the house and got her camera and took some pictures of the cloud.

Later, I went out and knocked down the apples in the Golden Delicious apple tree, as they were falling all over the lawn and needed to be picked up and carted off to the compost pile. There were many hundreds of them, most small and distorted, and all covered with that black moldy substance. I suppose that with sufficient spraying and thinning we could have had a good, big crop of apples but we have no big sprayer and certainly would never get around to thinning so many apples. Chris kept two buckets of the bigger and better apples for making apple sauce, and the rest we picked up and carted off to make compost in a year or two.

It’s getting close to the time when I’ll have to bring in my house plants but so far they are doing fine on the front porch and the stapelias continue to bloom wildly. The plants are looking decrepit though, and I’ll have to cut off the good sections and re-root them and throw the rest away. At church grandson Robbie had a tray of potted candelabra euphorbia plants on the church front porch, with a FREE sign. His parent plant had to be cut back, so he planted the cuttings, and now I have one of them. The ones I used to have grew overly large.

Well, need to running along. I need to call Janice and request haircuts, then will go and sift the ashes in our burning barrel to get all the metal scraps out before putting the ashes on the heap in the garden that I use for fertilizer. That’s a messy job, especially if it’s windy!

Have a good day and may you all accomplish a great deal without too much effort. – DALE

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