Saturday, September 24, 2011

And The Beat Goes On...

My view in early August..... view now (at least there's a tree :)
 The way we got here....

 ....not everyone was happy initially...
 ....change is hard, y'know....
 ....but eventually creature comforts can be found.
This post is the last for the blog called Millertime...I feel that I've taken it as far as it can go. It's been a real hoot, and I will leave it in place for the foreseeable future. I'm just in a state of transition these days, and so my blog life is as well. But I'll be it or not....for I am an irrepressible, un-stoppable, un-shut-up-able force! (Like y'all didn't know that by now, eh? :)  See you in the funnies!

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

SeedGROW Project Post #3

Here we are into August already! My SeedGROW project plants are doing great, especially considering that none were started early indoors.
The 'Garden Babies' lettuce is keeping good company with this cuke....
 ...and was harvested a couple days ago for the second time this season. Very tasty, and eating a salad from home-grown lettuce is the ONLY way to fly as far as I'm concerned!
 The basil 'Italian Cameo' seems to enjoy this metal pot, even though I didn't thin the plants as much as I usually would. The plants were so pretty that I hated to disturb them.... I harvested the first group only a couple days ago. The flavor is fairly strong, and the fragrance almost reminded me of Holy basil. It tasted great in pasta though, so I'm hoping it bounces back for at least one more good cutting.
 As for the 'Summer Splash' marigolds, I can't say enough good things! Very vigorous plants (even here in part shade)....
 ....and continuous blooms!
 Every plant seems to sport a different shape....
 ....and color-all from the same packet of seeds.
 Even this late-transplanted thinning has grown bushy and commenced blooming!
This is shaping up to be the best GROW project yet!

I'm growing with the SeedGROW project. Thanks to Renee's Garden for the seeds.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

GROW Project 2011: Post #2

 My GROW project plants are coming along. Some slowly...

...well, the lettuce have been harvested once already....
...and some others are coming along...


I'm growing with the SeedGROW project. Thanks to Renee's Garden for the seeds.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

SeedGROW Project 2011!

Well the time has come for another fantastic garden bloggers SeedGROW project, courtesy of Renee's Garden! This year's project promises to be three times the fun with three varieties of seed: basil 'Italian Cameo', lettuce 'Garden Babies', and marigold 'Summer Splash'. In this first planter I planted the marigold on May 9th, along with beans, peas, and a nasturtium...
 ....and the marigolds are coming along nicely!
 Here I've planted the basil (also on the 9th), and there's LOTS of good germination going on.....
 ...almost ready to do some thinning as a matter of fact (thanks in part to the grill grate protection from digging chipmunks).
There are 3 other areas with project seeds planted (including the lettuce), but with less progress. NOT the fault of Renee's seeds, however: my weather has been exceptionally cool this year. As a matter of fact, the low was 26 degrees on May 27th!! Frankly I'm happy that any of these plants are alive at all, they're rock stars as far as I'm concerned! :)

"I'm growing with the SeedGROW project. Thanks to Reene's Garden for the seeds."

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Beautiful Canvas Creation!

Recently I was contacted by Easy Canvas Prints to see if I would be interested in reviewing one of their products.  Easy Canvas Prints allows you to take a picture and turn it into a canvas print. One thing I really loved about their website is how easy it is to use. Just a four step process to create a masterpiece.

The picture I selected is intended to be a gift for my best friend, whose mother is very ill.

First I went to the website and clicked on the 'Start Designing Now' button.
You select your canvas size (I chose 11x14) and how thickly you want the image wrapped (I chose gallery wrap - 1.5 inches).
On the next step you will upload your image.
Their guidelines will tell you if the resolution is too low or not.
Once you've uploaded your image, you will choose the border.
There are several options (including mirror wrap option, which extends the picture around the sides in a mirror image, or choosing a color for your border), but I chose the picture-wrap which extends the border of the image around the sides.
Finally, you will select image options. You can turn a color photo into black and white or sepia, and you can have minor or major retouching done.
Once you've completed those four steps, then off to checkout! It's really that simple.
A few days later the package arrived, and I am thrilled with the results!

What a wonderful gift for my dear friend, it's a cool way to enjoy this picture!

Disclaimer:  I was provided one canvas print in exchange for a review.  All of the opinions expressed above are my own. 

Saturday, April 30, 2011

It's Alive!

At long last I have blooms!
 First blooms of the year...really! Much later than last year, it's been far too cold and rainy up here for any springtime action (heck, we had snow less than a week ago!)
 I decided to bring a few in before the deer find them, as I cannot afford my Liquid Fence deer repellent this year.
At least I get to use one of the cool flower frogs I picked up awhile back. Hopefully in the next few days there will be even more blooms to enjoy. Happy Spring y'all! :)

Friday, April 15, 2011

Last Season Veggie Review: Double-Double Washtubbles

This area consists of two dual wash tubs, fantastic antiques from the days of labor-intensive laundry equipment. Now they get to decorate my yard and grow veggies! The set on the ground was planted up on May 22nd with a combo of indoor-started and winter-sown plants. This side has cucumber 'Crystal Apple', broccolini 'Atlantis', broccoli 'Packman', and chinese cabbage 'Soloist'. Cutting celery 'Afina' was added in a row along the front of both tubs on the 27th after they hardened off.
This side has nasturtium 'Spitfire' (from the SeedGROW project), a store-bought marigold, another broccoli and chinese cabbage.

Gotta cover them with chicken wire until they're well established, lest the chipmunks get to excavating.
Right behind the tubs on the ground are these on legs. They served as my water gardens for several years, but began to leak. Now they are planted with seeds: summer squash 'Cocozelle' and baby corn 'Bonus'. I'd read that pretty much any corn could be harvested as "baby corn" to stir-fry, but this variety touted "baby ears are ready to pick when plants are only 18" tall". (What I didn't pay attention to in the description was "for heaviest yield, plant seeds 1" apart" D'oh!) Anyhow, more wire protection, and we're off!
By June 3rd I had to remove the wire here to let the plants out (that's right, I  let the plants out! ;-)
The corn was too tall for wire as well, but I left it over the squash awhile longer.

First harvest was this nice bunch of chinese cabbage on June 19th! Unfortunately the other one bolted, but this was fantastic sauteed in olive oil with wine cap mushrooms (grown in my asparagus patch!)
Both the broccoli and broccolini responded well to "cut and come again" harvesting, I got several servings off these three plants. Not enough to freeze for winter, but I'm still experimenting with vegetable growing. I'll dedicate more space after the results are in.

The cutting celery was true to its name, responding like a rock star with generous yields all season! It's really great to cook with, and has tasted good even out of the freezer this past winter. Sure, it's not big ol' stalks you can slather with peanut butter, but the celery flavor is bolder and it's easy as pie to grow. Winning! (Heh, one for Charlie...dammit :)
This 'Cocozelle' was the best summer squash I have ever grown! Plants were  fruiting positively non-stop, and they were yummy on the grill.
By July the tubs are almost hard to see! These are some happy plants!
The squash blooms were magnificent! So huge, almost tropical-looking. I finally got around to sauteed blooms toward the end of the season...super yummy!
The first 'Crystal Apple' cuke harvested was almost too big at baseball sized, the skin seemed to toughen easily. They were better at golfball size, and I bet they'd be tasty if collected marble sized and used for a "non-stop pickle" recipe.
Yea, I just can't stop gushing about this squash! The skin was thin and just fine left on in every way I cooked them. This will certainly be planted again this year!
Here we are on August 5th, super lush growth with tassles on the corn....
....I used a clean cosmetic brush to hand-pollinate just in case. It's customary to plant corn in rows so it can be wind-pollinated, but these six stalks are in a single file line. I wanted corn for sure.
More good-looking cruciferous tasties....
....and by August 25th we have corn! I accidentally let one ear get full-sized, but got two babies. All three were highly edible.
All the lush growth in these tubs was very attractive to the froggies.... well as some bugs (but only after my harvests were done-how polite! :)
I got a lot of consideration from the deer too-no corn damage until the harvest was over. This stalk was downed on September 21st.
One last-ditch harvest of every edible speck on October 1st....
...but these bugs harvested corn stalk material right up until October 21st....
....when frost crashed the party. Hard!
Pretty soon I get to do it all over again!