13 April 2015

Let Them Eat Cake

A few weeks ago David and I were watching The Best Thing I Ever Ate, cake edition, and Anne Burrell was foaming at the mouth over this fabulous coconut cake that she schlepped from the Village to Midtown to get.  After watching them make the cake at Smith and Wollensky, I knew I had to make that cake soon. So I did. For Easter.

Coconut Cake Batter

08 April 2015

Sunshine and Hops

A month ago I posted about a goal of mine to grow hops. It's on my Living List!

My hops rhizomes arrived from The Thyme Garden just as we were getting ready to leave to go camping a few weeks ago. The instructions that came with the rhizomes directed me to put them into the refrigerator until I could plant them, so I did. The rhizomes I ordered were the Cascade Hops, Chinook Rooted Rhizome (organic) and the Sterling Rooted Cutting.

Initially I planned to plant all 3 varieties along the clothesline, but after I started digging in the yard, I decided that I wanted to place them in different areas of the yard, to add interest and fragrance.

The Sterling Hops is the only plant that will be growing on the clothesline.  I chose Sterling because I am a huge fan of silver.  The description might've influenced me as well.

slightly spicy fragrance with a herbal floral punch with notes of citrus

Sterling Hops
Sterling Hops
I chose the Chinook Hops because I occasionally hear and see Chinooks flying overhead. Plus the description is kind of sexy, no?

07 April 2015

Aviary

Lately there have been a lot of birds at my place...

Cardinal
This guy is one of a trio of couples that lives here. He is not afraid to show the squirrels who is boss!

04 April 2015

I Love It When a Plan Comes Together

..and also when PLANTS come together!

It's no secret that my batting average with plants is about 0.500, but I am enthusiastic about what I plant or pull up in my yard.

We have much coming back to life in our yards these days: daffodils, forsythia and quince, bananas, peonies, lilies of all kinds, spearmint and lemon balm. Some plants that I planted last year that "didn't make it" are making it now (hollyhock, berries). And the tulips!

Back at the end of January, we took a chance and planted some very cheap tulip bulbs (~$14.00 for 118 bulbs) that we got on deep discount at Walmart. Most of them went into this design. I added mulch and some stones to give more definition to the bed. Now there are at least 80 plants with blooms!

Peace Tulips

I wasn't sure what to expect with our very late start with this project, but I am very pleased.

Tulips!

More on other yardening projects later...

25 March 2015

Camp Life

During Spring Break we were able to spend some time in nature, camping on the Illinois River. The first night was really rough with a campsite delivery (The Mobster) from Gambino's.

Gambino's