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Garden Enthusiasm

August

rudbeckia

The End of July

Read on to find the August chores coming up ... and review the highlights of the summer.
August chores page is posted!

I finally have tomatoes coming on well, but they are still quite green. How about you? Are your tomatoes doing well? I'd love for you to add your opinions and pictures on the Facebook page.

Friendly Gardens

What makes a garden friendly to wildlife?
First, you don't want to kill them. Did you consider how many important insects and wild animals are harmed by use of herbicides, pesticides and overuse of fertilizers? I know I didn't, years ago when first gardening. Whenever you possibly can, learn about and use organic means to control problems and to stimulate growth. We are losing our honeybees and the beneficial way they contribute to our food supply. Its been determined that many of the modern ways we farm and garden are weakening their health and decimating their colonies. But every gardener who plants friendly garden plants and minimizes poisonous additions to the environment is helping them survive!
my work

Working

This is what I've been working on: weeding that stone walkway, resetting the bricks, pruning the lavender hedge. It rained recently so I'm going to have to get a move on to accomplish the jobe of refilling the walkway cracks with a sand/cement mixture. I hope to cut down on what has turned into a monumental job of keeping this walk free of weeds.

If you want the report on weeds, Canadian Thistles were a topic of interest on the blog. That was last month. This month the villain is ragweed. we grow the type that is taller than a man...up to seven feet tall at its maturity. Of course, at that point ( and yes, some of mine get to that point) you have to simply cut them off at the ground with loppers. Better to get them while they're young and only about three feet tall. You can just pull them up, normally, but if any weed is tenaciously holding on, just loosen the soil with a digging fork. You can see I'm old fashioned about the way I weed. No Round Up for me.

What's happening on the sites?

Here's the news and some things to keep you entertained...

Well, like I announced on the Facebook page, I have been trying to move my site and revamp it at the same time.

Eventually it will settle down to one theme look, and be faster to visit,etc. In the meantime it interferes with my writing to have to work on the parts that no one sees! Thank you for being patient with all this, faithful readers.
quarry pond

Parks

The parks have been so lush from all the rains and moderate temperatures. When it is not raining, we like to take walks.

Here we are in Prairie Oaks along the quarry pond; Prairie Oaks is one of the newer Metro Parks and they are just developing it, but it has several very nice areas of mixed woods and prairie plantings. it also has a special dog area where your canine friends can run free and splash around in some water. There are some very happy doggies there!
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Share

If you like the newsletter or any of my pages, please do share them.

I appreciated a reader who mentioned that I should try to label more of the flowers. I thought that was a great idea. On this news page, the golden daisies are an unnamed Rudbeckia fulgida. Un-named because over twenty years ago I planted some Guldsturm, and this is what remains... an unnamed seedling that might even have mixed with the wild type (rudbeckia triloba) from my mother's old garden.

In the prairie sampling pictured in the header are yellow coneflowers and Blazing Stars, Liatris pycnostachya.

 

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Cool Salads

Required when the weather is hot... healthy and delicious salads.

If you live in my part of the country you know this has been a summer of cooler weather and lots of rain for Ohio. I'm not complaining, since I worked int he garden quite a bit. Usually the heat of this time of year knocks me out. so I have eaten salad because I like it, but didn't require meals without cooking.

When it is hot, a proven favorite was always Tuna layered salad which was a complete meal and easy to make. I think I found the recipe on an ad for Ranch Dressing! Here it is for you:
  1. Make a bed of lettuce and spinach greens ( any kind you like), put on the bottom layer of large glass serving bowl.
  2. Cook up some slices of bacon, as many as you want for crumbles.
  3. Chop or slice black olives and tomatoes, mix together and set aside.
  4. Mix up your favorite Ranch dressing ( I like Paul Newman or Hidden Valley) and add a little sour cream or yogurt; flake tuna and slice up green onions -mix all three together.
  5. Slice some ripe avocado, sprinkle with lemon juice.
  6. Layer the tomato and olives on the lettuce, then add the tuna and green onion dressing on top of that layer.
  7. Sprinkle generously with bacon and finally, arrange the avocado slices on top.
That is it. There are lots of great variations of the 7 layer salad, but this was always my own favorite and it is loved at potlucks, too.
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