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Heyyyy, look who decided to bloom on Christmas Eve:
Phoenix is weird.
Hey, lots of pretty flowers!
Thanks to Carol over at May Dreams Gardens for suggesting we post photos of what’s blooming in and around our casas on the 15thish of each month. Be sure to check out everyone’s flower photos on her blog.
As I mentioned, I’ll post photos for you nonbloggers out there tomorrow. You still have time to email your flower pics to me. I hope to see you back here.
It’s funny how when the gardening centers begin to pare down their stock, I suddenly want to plant like crazy. I’ve been prowling around the local nurseries with a fall-planting itch.
Because everyone’s trying to dump their inventory at the moment, bargains abound.
Like the Zauschneria ‘California fuchsia’ at Jericho Nursery (the one on the frontage road just north of Osuna) are only two bucks each.
They’re just now starting to bloom – of course I want one. Or four.
At the grocery store, I unexpectedly found a couple of Hoyas marked down to fifty cents each, so I bought two and planted them together. Here’s the new plant in the living room:
I can’t wait to watch it grow. And I’ll be beside myself if it decides to flower – hoya flowers are sooooo adorable!
I love that I can have a fall-planting itch and be able to scratch it for so little cost.
Another example is how I collected Desert Marigold seeds from my landlady’s plant, and threw them in this planter:
I got another couple of Chayotes at the store (they’re a buck apiece) and planted them, too.
Next I’ll plant some beets and some lettuce, probably more rounds of carrots and radishes, too. I can’t wait to get growing again!
What about you? Do you get the urge to plant in the fall, or only in the spring?
Hey look! Lots of photos of pretty flowers blooming in and around mi casa:
Indoors, Lady Evermore, an Aeschynanthus plant, is rocking some blooms:
And so is the adorable Echeveria on the windowsill:
Thanks to Carol over at May Dreams Gardens for encouraging us to post photos of what’s blooming in and around our houses on the 15thish of each month. Check out her blog for more pretty flowers.
If you don’t have a blog but would still like to share your flower photos, you can email them to me. Recently I’ve been posting them the day after my own, but tomorrow I have an all-new Ask the Experts scheduled. So let’s aim for Tuesday to publish them instead, our August Garden Nonbloggers’ Bloom Day. That will give you the weekend to shoot photos and get them to me. You can also post them on my facebook wall.
I’ll be back tomorrow with the Experts. Hope to see you here!
Let’s see what’s blooming in and around the house:
We have been getting some rain in Albuquerque, which is great. It’s much appreciated. The flowers in the orange container love it, as do the tomatoes.
One side note…I planted marigolds in all the containers to ward off pests, but something ate the marigolds in the purple container. Stripped them of all their leaves. Not sure who did that but I thought it was amusing. Whoever it was left the marigolds in the other containers alone. For now. I’ll be keeping my eye on them!
Inside, the Chlorophytums (Spider plants) bloom nonstop:
Lady Evermore, an Aeschynanthus, also blooms:
And so does the cute little Echeveria with her adorable pink blooms:
Thanks to Carol over at May Dreams Gardens for suggesting we post photos of our flowers on the 15thish of each month.
If you don’t have a blog but would like to share your flower photos, you’re welcome to email me pics and I’ll post them tomorrow. Hope to see you back here!
It’s safe to say that I’m a nurturer.
If you know me in “real life,” or even if you only know me through this blog, it’s pretty obvious that I’m always getting excited about baby leaves and teeny tiny flower buds.
I love nurturing and growing things. And I’ve always been that way.
I’m not alone.
Anyone who’s raised a child or loved a pet feels the same way. Any gardener who’s planted something small and helped it grow to fruition feels the same way. Anyone who has grown a relationship with another person feels the same way.
We may each have different approaches, but in the end, growing is rewarding. The more we grow, the more texture we add to our human experience.
But dang, sometimes those growing experiences can take the wind right out of our sails.
I don’t know about anyone else, but sometimes it takes me a day or two to recover from various experiences. This past weekend was a good example. I was too wiped yesterday to blog about anything.
Before I share what happened, let me first share some of the babies from my garden because they make me so happy!
Like the Chayote, which is growing strong:
And the baby tomatoes!!!!
Baby Zinnia bud:
Pretty little Thunbergia flowers:
Newly sprung Gaillardia (Blanket Flower):
I love all those little guys! It’s a lot of work growing them in containers – most mornings, I go out armed with rubbing alcohol and q-tips to fry any bugs I see – but they’re coming along so well!
They are a welcome relief from “real life.”
So what happened over the weekend?
Well, regular readers know that I’m a volunteer for the local chapter of the American Red Cross. I’m on a disaster team, and have been for about seven years. (I met both Expert Dottie Correll and Expert Lewis Casey through the Red Cross, btw.)
Basically what that means is that when there is a natural disaster, we respond. Nationally, the Red Cross responds to tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes. Here in Albuquerque, it’s almost always a house fire. Our goal is to make sure everyone has shelter, food and clothing.
More often than not, the calls come when you’re sound asleep.
Early this past Saturday morning, just before 4a.m., I got a call from Lewis, who was the captain for the disaster team. There was a home fire in the East Mountains, he wanted to know if I was available to go with him (we’re not supposed to go on calls alone). I was sleepy, but I said yes.
Was it inconvenient? Sure. Would I rather have stayed in bed? Absolutely.
But then I would’ve missed an opportunity to meet a gentleman who was humbled by how his dog alerted him to the flames and saved his life.
And I would’ve missed watching the full moon set over the mountains as the sun rose.
And I would’ve missed Lewis’s good company and leadership.
The rewards were greater than the inconvenience.
Then, on Sunday morning, after having breakfast at the Grove, I got in my car, turned on to Edith, and boom, there was a house on fire. I pulled over. People were coming out of neighboring houses, stopping their cars and getting out, everyone was calling 911. Some people tried to fight the flames -which were coming out the back of the house – with garden hoses. Neighbors were rushing to make sure the house was empty.
The fire had just started, yet already it was consuming the back half of the house.
We must’ve all been on the same wavelength, because everyone who had a car jumped back into it and moved it to the next block – there was nothing we could do except make room for the firetrucks.
A garden hose was no match for those flames, we needed the big guns.
And they got there fast, within minutes of those first 911 calls. Those rockstar firefighters were all over it.
Here’s what the house looked like shortly after they arrived:
Once the firefighters showed, I made my way to the people who lived in that house and identified myself as a volunteer with the Red Cross (I had my badge in my purse).
The house was a duplex, and the occupants were renters. One of them told me he’d only been gone 15-20 minutes at the grocery store, and came home to smoke pouring out of the house. The other tenant had been home and managed to escape safely. The fire started and spread so fast, they were lucky to be alive. Also luckily, there were no kids or pets in the home.
We watched as firefighters battled the blaze, and everyone hoped that they caught the fire early enough to spare most of the house.
And then this happened:
Something in the attic caught.
Once I saw that, I called Lewis. He was still the captain on duty, and these folks were definitely going to need assistance.
The house ended up mostly destroyed. Here’s what it looked like hours later:
I ended up being on scene for more than four hours. We helped the tenants, both financially and emotionally. We thanked the firefighters and policemen.
I thought I was going to spend the day watching the Indy 500. Instead, I watched someone’s house burn. Which sucked. And was draining. The rewards were not abundant.
I posted photos on facebook, and people started throwing the “hero” word around. I think that’s very sweet, but I’m not a hero. I didn’t risk my life like those firefighters – they’re the heroes. Those guys, along with our military heroes and other emergency personnel, swore to serve and protect. I took no such oath. I didn’t risk anything by helping others.
What I am is a nurturer. And someone who believes neighbors should help neighbors. Which makes me exactly the same as 99% of the population.
Will I take credit for volunteering my time to help others? Yes. And I’ll take credit for doing what I said I would I do. I’ll take credit for the hard work. But those things don’t make me a hero. They make me human.
I’m not trying to be modest. I’m trying to make sure we’re not setting the bar too low.
I worry, are we starved for heroes in our world? Maybe we’re so jaded by the constant beat of inane celebrity stories in our news feeds that we can’t help but lavish praise on the ordinary.
If I’m a hero for acting on a basic human instinct to help others in need, if I’m considered special for donating a little bit of my time, then aren’t we aiming low?
Call me naive, but I still believe the vast majority of us would’ve pulled over the moment they saw flames, just like me. Or reacted just the same way that folks did in Oklahoma, and in Boston.
Maybe that makes us heroes. Or maybe it just makes us decent human beings.
What do you think?
Can you see why I needed a break yesterday? It wasn’t the holiday weekend I intended to have, but then, it wasn’t much of a holiday for the fire victims, either.
Time once again for photos of what’s blooming in and around the casa:
(Sphaeralcea, Globe Mallow)
The Mexican Evening Primrose is as pretty in the evenings…
…as in the morning:
(Spartium, ‘Spanish Broom’)
(A blooming onion)
(Nigella, ‘Love in a Mist’)
(Nigella, ‘Love in a Mist’)
Inside the casa, one of the Euphorbia milii plants busted out some adorable new blooms:
The Birthday Orchid continues to bloom strong:
And Nel, a Chlorophytum comosum ‘Spider Plant,’ flowers continuously:
And my backdoor container garden oasis has blooms throughout:
I love flowers!
Thanks to Carol over at May Dreams Gardens for encouraging us to post photos of what’s blooming around the 15th of each month.
If you have pretty flower photos to share, but not a blog, send me your pics (email@example.com) and I’ll post them tomorrow. (If you do have a blog and want to send me photos, that’s ok, too!)
Hope to see you back here!