Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!!...

Here's to a 
Happy New Year.


Monday, December 30, 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas.....

Peace and Joy
go out to 

Merry Christmas...

Thursday, December 12, 2013

It's Beginning...

...to look a lot like

As you may know, I collect Santas.
I'm trying to control this, and only get ONE each year.

Here's this year's.
It's a Jim Shore design.  I like his whimsical figures.
The birds and birdhouses fit in with my other obsession of gardening.

 I like to find Santas when we're on trips.
This one was found in Cloudcroft, New Mexico, this fall.

Add to the collection...add to the memories of the find.

Hope your holiday preparations are coming along smoothly.

Happy Gardening...

Monday, December 2, 2013

Sunset, Sunrise...

Hello December...

We've had some beautiful weather, the last few days

Last night, the sunset was beautiful.

Pinks and purples and golds...
looking out across the creek, from the back deck.

Then, by the time I got out to the front, there were deeper purples and golds.

Then, when I went out this morning for the paper...

another beautiful sky.

Nature IS the best artist.

We're forecast to be in the 80s the next couple days,
then, another Arctic Blast.
Freezing weather, and maybe more rain, by the weekend.


Speaking of harsh weather...
our son-in-law hasn't found a new job yet here.
His old boss called and asked him to come back up north.
This time, North Dakota!  

They lived there before, so he knows what to expect.
He got there yesterday....just in time to get the beginning of our 
Arctic Blast.

In North Dakota, Arctic Blasts are MUCH more serious than here.

So, when we're whining this weekend about the cold,
we'll keep in mind that cold is another one of those things in nature that are
relative to place.


Now, I need to go get the pumpkins put away, and get out the 
Christmas decorations.  

Happy Gardening...

Friday, November 29, 2013

Foggy Morning.....

This morning was cold and foggy....

I brought the paper into the house, grabbed the camera,
and headed over to the creek.

Played with some different exposures.

After over a year of being dry, the creek is still flowing from our recent rains.
You can see the debris still up against the trees, from the
Halloween Flood.

The rushing water, changed the creek a bit.  It's deeper in places.
And, it washed down some heavy rocks.  Powerful force....

The water now makes for some nice reflections.

But, it was cold.  So, I came on back up to the house.

I think next time, it would be wise to change out of my house slippers.
They got a bit wet.

The sun was out by afternoon.  We're warming up for the next few days.
And then, another cold front is forecast.

Is this what they mean by 'warmer and dryer than normal' this winter?
I guess only time will tell.

Stay warm...

Happy Gardening...

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Have a happy and safe


Monday, November 25, 2013

It Wintered Here....

Maybe not for long. Warm weather will probably return.
But, for November, in Central Texas, it's been cold.
And, rainy.

We haven't gotten out of the thirties here since last Friday.
Thursday was 80F.

The water is still flowing down the creek, and across the cart path.
That pipe has been clogged up, for a while.

And, wet, soggy leaves are stuck to everything.
We cleaned up several cart loads, just before the cold front blew in.

There'll be more sweeping and raking and hauling, once things dry out.

Hope you're keeping warm where you are.
Looks like our little piece of Winter, is spreading across the country.

Happy Gardening...

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Day by Day...

Yesterday, the day dawned, with a beautiful sunrise.

Today, the day dawned cold and drizzly.

Sometimes, Texas weather is like that box of chocolates.
You just never know what you're gonna get.

Happy Gardening...

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Into Each Life, Some Rain Must Fall....

Or, maybe a lot of rain.

On October 30th, it started raining here about 10:00 p.m.
Softly at first.  Then it began to POUR.
And, it poured and it poured.

By 4:30 a.m., it began to let up.
By then, we had over a FOOT of rain here.

Remember my boast about my new bed?

How it had worked with a three inch rain?
Two of those inches in a hour.

Well...after two inches an hour, for SIX hours,
it wasn't so pretty.

The water came pouring over the brick edging.  It rolled up the cardboard
and the newspaper we'd laid under the mulch.

It washed out gravel and picked up stepping stones, 
and stacked one on top of another.

It sheared off weeds and grass, from under the newspaper and mulch.

It washed debris against our not-so-sturdy new fenced area.

It washed stones from the Rio.

And, crushed granite, .....

....into the Rio.

It built up debris against the house and the fences.

3:00 a.m., Thursday, October 31, 2013

It rushed like this, through the circular drive, for many hours.
And, deposited about 4" of rain IN the garage.

We worked hard to keep it out of the house, 
sweeping it off the front porch as fast as we could.
That worked.

By morning's light, the waters had receded a bit.
But, it had done some damage.

It washed away some of the cart path.
But, the creek had gone down enough to be inside its banks.

Large trees, and a smoker from down the street, deposited on the 10th tee box.

These trees, slammed against a low water crossing bridge, must have contributed
to the water backing up.

We were SO lucky.  The water is out of the garage, with no real damage.
We can restore the mulch and the plants.

But, many of our neighbors had water rushing 

Carpets are ripped up, and laying in driveways.
Not sure how much wall and furniture damage there is.

But, as far as I know, nobody was hurt.
In other areas of this flood, that wasn't the case.

9:00 a.m. October 31.

People were being smart, and not trying to cross Cypress Creek here.
This was way higher than we had seen before.

So, today I'm grateful we are all OK.

We're looking into flood insurance.
And, we're buying some sand bags.

We had about 20" of rain at Patchwork Garden, in October.
That's plenty, thanks.

Did I mention, we have rain forecast for today?

Happy Gardening...

Saturday, October 26, 2013

A Little This...A Little That....

It's been a while since I posted here.
We've been here and there, and busy.

Today is overcast...more rain forecast...so I got out and took some photos.

Everything has been really loving our recent rains.

And, we've enjoyed not having to water.

Last time, I showed you our latest project and pointed out this was next.

Well...it's coming along nicely.
Not finished...but coming along.

We'll be putting in some stepping stones on the right side.

Water from the street always ran through here, whenever it rained.
It was washing away soil from tree roots.

So, we put in this cut limestone edging and a trench, to redirect the rain water.
And, it works!
It got it's first test the day we finished it, when we had three inches of rain.

Some 'Color Guard' yucca and cacti will be the basis of the plantings here.

I'm thinking this one will have to be replanted...maybe a bit more mounding for it's roots.
It's pretty flat right now.

It all ties in, with the new side project.

A bridge helps to further protect exposed trees roots.

More work needs to be done.
When is there not?
But, it's all coming along.

The deer have chomped to tops out of the Spanish Bayonet yuccas.
Not to be vindictive....but, I hope it HURT!

This nut sedge is coming up THROUGH thick cardboard and about three inches of mulch.
Nothing stops this stuff.

And, I can clean out the new fenced area again.
The golf course over-seeded with rye grass for winter, and it washed down to here.
I need to build this bed up more.  Maybe that would help.

But, most things are looking pretty good.
Looking over the Drive Bed, toward the Fenced Yard,
you can see things are pretty green.

The opposite view is nice, too.

Going through the gate, you can see how things are filling in.

A lot of this will die back for winter.  But, I hope I've added enough evergreen things
for some winter interest.

We'll have that same scenario, on the other side.

And, along the front fence bed.

The Turk's Cap, at the back of the Fenced Yard, is really putting on a show.

Love those bright red blooms.

On the front porch, I changed out a Holly Fern, for a Foxtail Fern.

The Holly Fern seemed to just need more water 
than I was remembering to give it.
So far, so good with this change.


On a more personal note...
we have good news, and bad news.

The good news is...
Our daughter has moved back, to be closer to us.
Right around the corner, in fact.
We'll get to see more of them.

The bad news is...
She moved back so we can help, 
while she's going through yet another
medical set back.

Our son-in-law, is headed back to Wyoming to work.
We're hoping he'll find a job down here, VERY soon.

God willing, we'll win these battles.

So...there's a little of this and that from around here.

Hope all is good in your neck of the woods.

Happy Gardening...