Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I Love Zinnias

Yes, I do and I try to grow them every summer. I usually have a mini variety in pots and semi-doubles in the main flowerbed. This year I tried some new types but they didn’t quite make it. I find that mysterious, as zinnias are the one flower that will grow for me anywhere. In fact, they were the first flower I grew in the all cement yard next to the outhouse.

Well, as you can see some of them are recovering from the drought and heat of early summer and beginning to bloom. I believe this is a Candy Cane mix. I also have them in white with pink streaks, and pink with white streaks. They add a lot of splash and I will certainly grow them again next year. Last year one of my neighbors had a great bed of cactus type zinnias in their front yard. I want them next year but I’m afraid they’d look too crazy in with the candy canes.

And yes, I wrote an article about zinnias. Actually, I wrote this last winter but deleted it a few months ago and re-wrote it for summer. I had planned to introduce a “flower of the month” thing to my column but it seemed hokey so I dropped it. I wanted a winter series but I’ve since come up with better ideas. I also liked the photos in that article, but since Examiner is migrating to a new style we don’t have control over our layout and things look wonky unless they are super simple.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Peachy Goodness!

Yesterday while we were out and about we stopped at Baugher’s farm – they of the famous pies that pop up in stores around the area. My intent was to get peaches because I tend to get a bit peach crazy in summer. While pick-your-own is only on weekends there, they still had a wide variety of goodies to choose from.

I haven’t tried all of the pictures fruits so far, but the Red Haven peaches are sublime. The white peaches are OK, but I’ve never found a white peach that is as good as others. The donut peaches here aren’t quite ready yet and neither are the white nectarines. The apricots are a bargain at $1 a pound – a sign explains that they are smaller than usual and have harmless spots on them. But, they are quite tasty and better than the prettier apricots I’ve been getting at the farmer’s market.

When we were kids there were peach trees on our property so I have lots of nostalgia connected with them. Of course, my brother and I didn’t appreciate them but I remember watching the peaches grow at all stages, from hard green buds to rotted ones on the ground. They were often buggy so my brother and I mainly used them to throw around. Still, they were great trees to have around.