Starting seedlings-Tuesday Garden Party

I was listening to the gardening show on our local radio station on Saturday.  They were talking about starting seedlings.  I missed how to do it, but they gave the web site of where I could listen to a podcast:

So I am trying it!

We picked more turnips, which have to be the easiest thing we have ever grown.  We made another stew with that cheap meat bought during my coupon madness the other day.  The turnips were sweet!  Here they are before peeling and chopping:

Thanks to Jamie’s recipe at  for zucchini muffins, I made a batch with the last zucchini of the season from my mother’s garden.  She picked it right before Thanksgiving before the frost hit hard here in Northern California (well hard for us). 

I used the free-standing type of muffin cups and overfilled them a bit.  But it didn’t matter.  They are delicious.

My sister is passing through from Salem on her way to visit her grandkids in the Bay Area so I thought I would use the last of the fresh pumpkin to make some cookies for her to take with her.  My neighbor made this recipe about a month ago and they are really good.

I highly recommend them.  Luckily dinner is leftover chicken enchilada casserole from last night since this baking has pooped me out!

Another week has passed-Tuesday Garden Party 11/16/10

Well a week has gone by and I am feeling slightly better.  Better enough to run to the post office to mail a package to my SIL who is serving in Afghanistan.  The poor boy called over a week ago needing new underwear and socks.  I told my daughter I would mail the package for her as she left on her trip to Washington State.  Ha!  She should have known how unreliable I would be.  I finally got them to the PO today along with a package for Cell Phones for Soldiers.  We had one old cell phone and our friends had about 10!  Sent those off, feeling like I actually accomplished something today.

I mailed a Thanksgiving card to my elderly ex-neighbor (directly to the left of us) who has moved to Minneapolis to be near her son.  Her home has finally sold and I will be getting another new neighbor around the New Year.  That will make the 3rd new neighbor this year.  The face of the neighborhood changes as its residences age.  We were the young ones 23 years ago, now we are the old ones!

When I drive up to my house, I am amazed I still have color in my yard.   It has become chilly, low 50s during the day and low 40s at night here, but some things are still hanging on.  This is the view standing on my front porch with the door behind me.

Far right property line, fence to the back yard.  Yes those both started blooming about a week ago.

The side yard:

with some closeups, the Marguerite keeps on giving up color:

I won this Mexican sage at a luncheon.  Mine was the first raffle ticket drawn.  I was very excited.  DH potted it for me.

I swear this miniture red petunia looks better now than it did all summer!

Rats, I thought I snipped off the two deadheads!

Between the fibro and being sick, I have done absolutely nothing in the yard. I am hoping I get my pain under control enough to be able to have a nice yard next year.  I have about given up on the idea of vegetables.  But then my raised bed is crowded, I should get out there and thin it, maybe this week sometime when I have more energy.

Lastly here is something I made, pumpkin scones:

Recipe is from here:

They froze and reheated nicely in both the microwave wrapped in a paper towel for 30 seconds or in an oven at 350 for about 10 minutes.

Oh and a couple of my favorite Halloween pictures:

Fall is definitely here…..Tuesday Garden Party

Wow it has been a busy 2 weeks.  No time to blog at all.

I found this recipe a few years ago in the American Profile insert magazine that comes in our Sunday paper.  I made it the weekend after it came out.  I was talking to my BFF that day and told her I made a new recipe.  She said she did too.  We both made the same recipe the same day, trying it out.  It was definitely a keeper.  Unfortunately my bundt pan died and I tried making it into a loaf pan.  I thought it was done, but the middle was not (I should have taken a picture to share for the failure thread!).  I scooped it all back up with a pancake turner and put it back into the oven at 300 for an additional 20 minutes or so.  The outside was a bit overdone, but it did not matter.  A little whipped cream and it was divine…..

My winter garden is growing nicely.  That steer manure and prep really did the trick as evidenced by all the weeds growing right along with the lettuce, spinach and turnips!


I visited the local pumpking patch with my granddaughter’s play group.  I then bought a bale of straw and actually did an entryway decoration.  The scarecrow was put together by my daughter and our neighbor (another young mother).  They had a blast going through my fabric.

Speaking of fabric, I am totally in love with the new Moda line Bliss.  My daughter has already asked me to make her a quilt out of it. 

Finally what has been keeping me busy is apples!  I made apple butter and yesterday put up 9 quarts of apple pie filling.  I still have a plastic dishpan left to process.  After hand processing the apples for apple butter and complaining….. DH reminded me we have one of those old fashioned apple peeler, corer, slicer thingees.  That made all the difference!

I have not canned for many years.  It is really easy, just a bit time consuming.  My neighbor (young mother) came over to watch and is all jazzed up to try it too.  My own daughter has no interest of course!

I would love to do more apples and next year tomatoes.  I see trees hanging with apples around, but do not have the nerve of Jamie’s BIL.  I wish I did!

Tuesday Garden Party, late again!

Boy life is busy with a 2-year-old in the house.  My daughter was gone for 5 days and she kept me running.  I did manage to get next door to pick apples with my husband and Ally.  The house is empty, for sale, and the owners told us to be sure and get the apples and not let them go to waste.   I got about 10 pounds, but left lots on the dwarf trees too.  I wanted anyone viewing the house to see the lovely apples.  And YES I use empty clean milk cartons to hang my ziplock bags to dry!

My little seedlings are coming along, just about 3 weeks old at this point.  I did go out with a flashlight last night and picked slugs and snails.   Strangely enough they were all over my onions that are still in the ground, the green “leaf” part. 

I am so envious of all the garden links.  They make mine look a little pathetic, but hopefully each year I will get better and better. 

I am coming along with my cake decorating class.  Here is my latest effort:

And lastly, here is Ally helping clean the apples for future apple butter.

Yes that is another ziplock bag on the hand soap dispenser……up in the right hand corner you can barely see my plants that I am trying to germinate, is that the right term?  Basically they fell off or accidentally got pulled off the main plant when I was watering the garden and I put them in water.  I have a geranium, a minature petunia and one other plant.  I just checked the two small plants and they have “hair”.  I guess that means I should plant them huh?

We are having beautiful Indian summer days here in Humboldt.  My absolute favorite time of year.

Wow Tuesday Garden Party, the week flew by!

Probably because DH was hunting and my cake decorating has become serious!!  So on Saturday night while others were having a good time, I was messing around with frosting, well okay I was having a good time too!

Our weather has turned rainy and the garden is fading.  I am not ready to be done yet.  My elderly former neighbor’s kids were home and had a garage sale.  I was able to snag every single pot for gardening next year:

I took two shots this week of my volunteer flowers growing from cracks or between the driveway and border of our side yard:

Here is some evidence the garden is fading fast, along with what would no doubt be an award winning dandelion… how did I miss that?

And lastly this week, the edibles are from mom’s garden.  There are still many thornless red blackberries, but I am not sure it will get warm enough for them to ripen, and the zucchini.  The smallest is that perfect eating size.  I think I will make an au gratin with the middle size and zucchini something with the big one (as in cake or bread).

My seedlings are still growing well along with lots of little weedlings.  I will post a picture next week.  Happy gardening!

Tuesday Garden Party on Wednesday

Okay I woke with a migraine yesterday and tried Maxalt for the first time.  It worked!  But I did have to take it again later in the day.  So needless to say, even though it worked, I felt like I had a hangover, but very little actual head pain.  Thus, I did not post my garden pictures yesterday.  And I had so much to say!!!

Enthused by other posters to Tuesday Garden Party I asked DH to help me plant seeds for a fall/winter garden.  I am on the northern coast of California in Humboldt which is a zone 9b.  We can actually plant lettuce almost year around. 

We planted these seedlings on Monday, Labor day, which also happened to be my DH’s birthday.  3 days later I met him as he got home from work.  I said, “Oh let’s go to the backyard”, bypassing the front door.  “Why”, he asked, eying me suspiciously.  Well okay so he is on cement all day and probably could not wait to get his work boots off.  “Because” I said mysteriously.  “Those are not seedlings, they are weeds”, he says to me before we even get to the gate.  That is what happens when you have been married as long as we have.  We read each others minds.

“I bet you”, I said.  “Okay” he responded.  I said, “I will bet you a new purse”, with him not realizing I had purchased a very cute Vera Wang at Kohl’s for 80% off that very morning!

He was very surprised when he arrived to this:

We planted Bibb lettuce, turnips, swiss chard, spinach, cilantro and basil.  I have no idea how the basil and cilantro will do, but I thought what the heck, they seem to bolt so quickly in the summer.

I did confess to him I already bought the purse:

He laughed and said, “I figured”.  New purses are not something I buy very often.  In fact, this is probably my first new purse in over 10 years that I bought.

I also wanted to get a picture of my Japanese Maple Tree before all its leaves dropped off:

 It’s been a busy week.  I have received many new plants/pots/etc from my neighbor’s family who are having an estate sale this weekend in anticipation of selling the house.  I am so happy to get the plants that my elderly neighbor so lovingly cared for the 23 years we have lived next door.  Next week I hope to have some photos of them.

Happy gardening!

Tuesday Garden Party

Mom is away… I drove her to Grants Pass halfway to my oldest sister’s house in Salem.  She put her on the train for Seattle to go on a vacation with the middle sister. 

So I am watering mom’s garden and taking advantage.  I picked these and made a cobbler, which turned into DH’s birthday dessert yesterday too!

There is my recipe right next to it.  See all the grease stains on the page.  I have used this cobbler recipe only over the years and it turns out yummy.  Sometimes I add a little cinnamon and nutmeg.  It is from Home Grown Fruits and Vegetables 1977.  I got married in 1978, so I am not sure when I bought this magazine.  It has many great recipes and a story of a garden from year 1 through year 3.  The apple butter recipe is wonderful too.

So here is the cobbler recipe:

Blackberry Cobbler

4 Tbsp of butter or margerine

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp sale

1/2 cup milk

4 cups blackberries

1/3 cup sugar

1 cup apple juice (optional, I have never done this step).

Beat together the butter and sugar.  Stir together in another bowl the dry ingredients, then add alternately to the butter/sugar with the milk, stirring until combined.  Turn the mixture into a greased 2 quart casserole (I use an 8 by 8 pan).  Top with blackberries.  Sprinkle with sugar. 

Heat apple juice to boiling and pour over all.  Bake at 375 for 50 minutes or until done.  Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired.  I layered ice cream, cobbler with a dollop of whipped cream.  Delicious!  My oven runs a bit hot.  So I baked at 350 for 40 minutes this time and to me the berries are not cooked quite enough, so you may need to adjust since 375 for 50 minutes in my oven tends to overcook.

Himalayas are everywhere here in Humboldt County California and my berry stash in the freezer is getting low, so I need to go out and start picking!

Tuesday and my phlox are finally blooming

Okay it’s August 31st right?  My phlox that I planted at in the spring are finally blooming.  Well sort of.  Both of these pots and a few others were planted with at least 5 phlox each and you can see my phlox crop?  This is one of the reasons I am not buying anymore plants from Costco.

See the snapdragon in the upper left?  It is growing in the crack between the driveway and the paver around the planting area in our side yard.  Last year I had Batchelor Buttons growing in the cracks. 

I still need to get my vegetables in.  I think I am resorting to plants from Miller Farms.

Tuesday Garden Party

This is my first post and since my garden is so pathetic this year it may be my last!

This is my white begonia’s 2nd year, my red begonia’s 10th (?) year (divided a few years ago), the yellow begonia first year and the hanging basket begonia and the third begonia along with the red and white’s first year.

I have been extremely disappointed with Costco’s bulbs.  I will no longer buy bulbs there.  Both the white and red begonias were purchased at local nurseries.  The little white flower (unsure of name) was a cutting from my mom and it spread like wildfire!

In the hanging basket, the little petunias are volunteers from last year.  It is the only hanging basket that produced this year.  Very disappointing.

Finally, I received one of those Ace Hardware redward cards for $5.00 and thought I would go see if they had any fall vegetable starts.  Well they didn’t, but I decided to rescue these two delphineums and geranium that were all $1.99 a piece.  I paid $1.05 after my reward card.  I hope they survive.  They were a bit root bound, but otherwise seemed okay.  I repotted them in Miracle Grow soil and watered them well.  We are having very warm (for us) weather here in Humboldt County California and am hoping these survive for next year’s flower display.

I wish my husband would get home from hunting.  I am having a hard time starting any project, although I did get the new plants potted, a load of laundry done and cleaned the kitchen and refrigerator well.  Tomorrow is garbage day, so Tuesdays are clean out the frig day. 

Today is my youngest daughter’s 23rd birthday.  She had a photo chosen as a billboard for a homecoming in North Carolina.  She is a young military wife/mother and I am very proud of her.

Rats you can’t see it very well!  Finally DH is home!