Sunday, 30 November 2014

Beautifully bright...Begonia!

At a glance, you will know this well known flower...Begonia!  The origin name is actually from a family from France, that was Begoniaceae.  The name was given to the flower from the French patron of botany, which was done to honour the name of his family.  It is easy to distinguish this simple, but beautiful flower.  These colourful flowers are also available in shades of orange, pink and white colours.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Classic beauty...Pink Daisy!

A large flowering head is symbolic of the pink daisy, bringing with it cheerfulness and delight!  Admiration and sympathy are two of the qualities that come to mind with this light pink colour. These flowers are wonderful to receive as a gift and are symbolic of friendship. The darker pink daisies are also known for gratitude and can be given as a gesture of thanks!

Friday, 28 November 2014

Delightful...Purple Hibiscus!

Available as an annual or perennial, the purple hibiscus always delights!  A very attractive flower distinguishable by it's colour and it's beautiful petals. So popular, there are almost 200 species available in purple alone! A great landscaping plant to add height and all round wonderful flower for planting in your garden.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Canna Lily Plant

Resembling the Iris, the perennial Canna Lily plant has large, lush flowers with tropical-like leafage.  These plants are easy to grow and are low care.  Both their foliage and flowers offer colour that never quits in the garden.   The colour of this flower may be yellow, orange or red and depending on the variety, the leafage can vary from green to maroon and including variegated types.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

A little Spring in the mix...

Christmas is officially a month away today!  To get away from the hustle and bustle for a moment why not indulge in thoughts of Spring?  Ahhh, the warmer temps, the fresh cut grass and sunny, sunny days. Oh snap ... time to put another log on the fire to keep out the chill from outside!  Enjoy your day, wherever it takes you!

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Anne Bronte (the other Sister) & the rose.

"But he who dares not grasp the thorn  ~ Should never crave the rose." (Anne Bronte)  "The daughter of a poor Irish clergyman in the Church of England, Anne Brontë lived most of her life with her family at the parish of Haworth on the Yorkshire moors. For a couple of years she went to a boarding school. At the age of 19 she left Haworth and worked as a governess between 1839 and 1845. After leaving her teaching position, she fulfilled her literary ambitions. She wrote a volume of poetry with her sisters and two novels.  Agnes Grey, based upon her experiences as a governess, was published in 1847. Her second and last novel, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, which is considered to be one of the first sustained feminist novels, appeared in 1848. Anne's life was cut short when she died of pulmonary tuberculosis at the age of 29.  Mainly because the re-publication of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall was prevented by Charlotte Bronte after Anne's death, she is less known than her sisters Charlotte, author of four novels including Jane Eyre, and Emily, author of Wuthering Heights.  However, her novels, like those of her sisters, have become classics of English literature." (Wikipedia)

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Bright, bold & beautiful~Stargazer Lily!

Born with the best genes from their parent plants, these Stargazer lilies won't disappoint. They have a light fragerance that's sure to please.  Popular in florist's bouquets, when cut, the blooms will last a long time and are easy to work with due to their thick stems. 

Friday, 21 November 2014

Red or White?...Poinsettias!

Also known as the Christmas Star and Christmas Flower, it’s said that this winter flower’s association with Christmas comes from a Mexican legend. The story goes that a child, with no means for a grander gift, gathered humble weeds from the side of the road to place at the church alter on Christmas Eve. As the congregation witnessed a Christmas miracle, the weeds turned into brilliant red and green flowers."

Wild West Wonders!

Frogs, jellyfish and tropical fish...are among the wonders of the sea and the Vancouver, B.C. Canada aquarium!  Many amazing things to see and do with no shortage of activities for the youngsters too. From across the planet, over 50,000 fascinating creatures to observe!  A fun day to explore and relax with nature!          

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Candy Stripe Hibiscus

Pretty in pink, one of the taller robust hibiscus varieties.  The white petals have red veins and reach a growth of up to 5 feet in height and blooms from 5-9"! The Candy Stripe Hibiscus provides great privacy as a temporary screen or as a tall hedge. The foilage is such a deep green, it is streaked with red!

Pick a peck of purple Phlox?

Try saying that 3 times...a twist on words to tangle up your mouth!  An old-time flower that is pretty to behold.  Compact plants, the large knot of flowers are quite sensational!  They make great cut flowers and can be found in many a bouquet.  Their showy blooms grow on top of their stems. Purple not your colour?... not to worry, these annuals can be found in an array of bright colours such as white, yellow, scarlet and red.Ga

A bouquet to brighten your day!

While Buffalo, U.S.A. is getting walloped with snow, we can always turn our thoughts to ... dare I say ... Spring?  Well, at least a lovely bouquet of flowers ... sure to brighten anyone's day!   "Today's Reminder:  Let us spend one day as deliberately as Nature, & not be thrown off the track by every nutshell and mosquito's wing that falls on the rails (Henry David Thoreau)."

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Marbled White Butterfly

An attractive black and white butterfly, The Marbled White is very distinctive. It is unlikely to be msitaken for any other species.  It's fav flowers?...the purple Majoram, thistles and knapweeds.  Not hard to spot them, if you look halfway down tall grass stems, where the adults like to hang-out!

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Ornamental Onion Plant

Say yes to Alliums (ornamental onions) for your flower Garden!   A must have for the vegetable garden along with garlic and shallots.  These beauties can be incorporated into your perennial garden and deserve an exuberant welcome!  Looking for a fresh cut flower? Look no further, these beauties make exquisite cut flowers for dried or fresh bouquets.  Not to worry about friendly critters that may visit your garden because they are resistant to chipmunks, voles, deer and rabbits! 

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Remembrance Sunday

The United Kingdom (UK) honour their veterans today for the sacrifices and heroic efforts that were formed in past wars.  The second Sunday of November is the main observance, but on November 11th, at the eleventh hour, 2 minutes of silence also take place.  Lest We Forget!             

Friday, 7 November 2014

The bloom sniffer...Max!

He's back again, our Maxie, sniff, sniff, sniffing the blooms!  Never happier than when presented with a fresh bouquet!  Here's his secret....all-time fav's breath!   Forget cat grass, just leave him to his blooms and he's in 7th heaven.  After all, a cat has 9 lives, dontcha know?  The morale of the story....lots of time to indulge in his favourite pasttime!

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Honour & the Veteran's Trellis

This Summer's date of July 28th, 2014 marked the 100th anniversary of the beginning of hostilities in the First World War. The Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 606 led the parade and wreath laying.  A beautiful monument (top photo) created by artist Jean Pierre Schoss was unveiled in commemoration of the first world war and is displayed in the garden at the City of Pickering's city hall, Ontario, Canada. With heartfelt gratitude we remember the men and women in uniform who fought for our freedom!

Red Sky at Night, Sailor's Delight!

Is there truth in the old saying "Red sky at night, sailor's delight.  Red sky in morning, sailor's warning", or is its simply folklore?  Well...there is some truth to the story!  There is a promise of good weather ahead when the sun is setting and we see a red sky at night.  Due to a high concentration of dust particles, the sun sends it's light.  When we see a red sky at night, this means that the setting sun is sending its light through a high concentration of dust particles. This usually indicates high pressure and stable air coming westerly. Good weather usually follows.   When you're looking for good weather, a high pressure system has to have passed through already, which means a storm system could be moving easterly.  Look out for rain on the way if the morning sky is a deep, glowing red, due to a high water content in the sky.                               

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

'As Time Goes By',...with Pine Cones?

Lyrics from Frank Sinatra 'As Time Goes By':  "You must remember this ~ A kiss is still a kiss ~ A sigh is still (just) a sigh ~The fundamental things apply ~ As time goes by..."  Yes, the cycle of life from the young to matured.  But did you know once pine cones mature, their seeds are edible?  The seeds are harvested by hand, thus a contributing factor to their expensive price tag.  Probably the most popular use is in pesto, or as a crunchy salad topper, but they are also good in desserts!

Monday, 3 November 2014

Colour me Daylily!

Depending on their hue, lilies have different meanings.  Graceful and classic, pure white lilies exemplify morality and chastity, while brilliant orange tiger lilies bring to mind prosperity and dignity.  While purple has been know to signify royalty, the purple lily stands for passion. Variegated coloured lilies speak to dedication and friendliness.  Popular the world over, some species of the day lily are eatable in cuisine from China, including stir-fry dishes and soup. Whether culinary or for their beauty, lilies are significant in literature and culture in much of the world.

Honour & the Order Of the Thistle

In Scotland, the highest honour one can receive is The Order of the Thistle.  Second only to the Order of the Garter, which is illustrative of Scotland's highest honour.  Honouring Scottish women & men, The Order is given to those who have contributed in a particular way to national life, or those whom have held public office.  St. Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland, who also appears on the Order's badge.  The Order's breast star subsists of a silver saltire (like the shape of the X in Roman type) with a pointed ray betwixt each of the arms of the cross.  The Order's motto 'Nemo me impune lacessit' (No one harms me with impunity) is at the center of a gold medallion contained in an enamelled image of the thistle; ringed by a green border.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Attorney-at-law & The 'Yellow Rose of Texas'

Back in the early 19th century, the 'Yellow Rose of Texas', aka 'Harrison's Yellow' or the 'Oregon Trail Rose' origin was a chance hybrid.  Between the 8th & 9th Avenues on 32nd Street, north of New York City, it first bloomed at the suburban villa (just south of the present General Post Office) of George F. Harison, attorney.  In the Spring of 2009 (near his grave) 'Harison's Yellow' was planted by the Heritage Foundation.  Esquire George created this rose in his Manhattan garden and it has now become a part of the Heritage Rose District of New York City.   

'Spring Forward, Fall Back'!

Yes it's that time of year when daylight saving time ends and we reset our clocks.  Spring forward, fall back can be taken literally.  It's the easiest way to remember which way to turn the hands of time.  Springtime:  clocks are moved forward by 1 hour, in the Fall:  clocks are moved backward by 1 hour. So enjoy your extra hour of sleep everyone!

Saturday, 1 November 2014

'Dumbo's Ears' aka Rudbeckia Maxima!

Marvellous wildflower, the Great Rudbeckia aka Dumbo's Ear's!  Towering and strongly bold!  These plants bear deep brillant yellow coneflowers.  4-6" of height, within the middle cone.  Also commonly known as 'cabbage leaf' coneflower due to the huge basal leaves of powder blue, with colossal stalks. Add panache to your garden at home, or at the cottage, it will be sure to brighten your day!  

Are you traditional, or modern...'Mum'?

Other than the traditional yellow mum, the thoroughly modern purple mum is part of an array of colours available, including white and red.  Occurring in various forms, the heads of these cheery blooms are showier than their splashy relations.  In some parts of Asia, yellow mums are boiled to make a sweet chrysanthemum trea known as 'pinyin' (in Chinese).  You can also make 'gukhwaju', a Korean brewed rice wine flavoured with chrysanthemum flowers.