Friday, February 25, 2011

Blimey it's Blooming Friday

This is an area at the furthest end of the garden in the shadows of a huge banyan tree, (the bearded fig tree)  where I have planted several gingers lilies, clerodendron bleeding heart, Antigua heath (Russelia equisetiformis)and showers of gold (galphimia glauca).
They are all thriving with very little care. 
There are some bald spots where some plants had died  and  will be replaced in due time. The terrain is very rocky and I am surprised that the plants are doing so well.
Hello friends and welcome to blooming Friday. The theme today is verdure, an old  French word meaning the lush greenness of flourishing vegetation. It is derived from the French word verd meaning green. To see more of Blooming Friday why not stroll over to Katarina at Roses and stuff to see more greenery  from around the world.  

As you can see from the above photos, the lush greenness that surrounds me even though we are supposed to be in our dry season. I am thankful for the showers we have been getting saving me water. We started this morning off with another shower of rain and hopefully that will continue .

Have a  verdant weekend my friends!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Moby Dick

 For nearly ten years he had been in solitary confinement. I heard about him from my husband and I thought that he was seeing ghosts. Many days and many months I would try to get a glimpse of him and see absolutely nothing. Then one day I heard a large splash and ran to the pond, at last I had seen this ghostly fish whom my husband had nicknamed "Moby Dick"
 He resided in this large growing  pond for about  ten years. Initially there were four butterfly Koi  that my husband had put in hoping that they would multiply. Soon after we decided to get rid of all our Koi  from the show pond because they were wrecking the water lilies. We managed to capture two of the butterfly Koi  in this growing pond. Later we found one floating so there was just one left. Years passed without a glimpse of him  so naturally I thought that he had died too. A few years later my husband said that he had spotted him. I laughed and told him that he was seeing ghosts. Last year I started going by the pond at night with a torch light. And lo and behold I spotted "Moby Dick"!  I tried capturing him but by the time I returned with the net he was gone. The nets remained by the ponds for several month but nothing happened.
Last week around midday,  we were  chatting with some visitors around the pond when "Moby Dick" made an appearance. So lately my husband started waiting by the pond with nets around noon time. He said that "Moby Dick " usually comes  around a certain area of the pond  at the same time everyday. I smiled to myself and thought, boy he  has a lot of patience. Some days he can be seen sitting around the pond at midday the hottest time of the day. When I approached him,  he would signal for me to stay away. So I happily left him to his own devices.
 Yesterday  Sunday around midday,  I heard my husband bellowing  my name.  I ran out of the house quickly thinking that something  terrible  had happened.When I got within earshot he shouted to me to get a large container. I ran like the devil was after me. I collected a large tub and ran toward him. He was standing by the growing pond with a net in the water.  I asked incredulously if he had caught "Moby Dick"? He asked  me to fill it partially with the pond water. I did that and he placed "Moby Dick" into the container.  "Moby Dick" was taken to the show pond  where he is now ensconced with other fishy companions. Hubby says that he hopes he survives the move and not die of a heart attack.  When I last checked  "Moby Dick" was doing fine.  Well done fisherman Chuck!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day Feb 2011

Hello friends and welcome to Garden bloggers' bloom day  this  windy month of February. I have the Clerodendrum splendens or the flaming glory bower blooming in my garden.  With its red and hint of white flowers and heart shaped leaves I consider it a perfect Valentines plant. And a belated Valentines day to all. There over  four hundred species of Clerodenrums, this one is a native to Western Africa. It is found in most tropical  climates and as far north of central Florida. It is sometimes mistaken for its' cousin the Pagoda flower or the Clerodenrum paniculatum. Like most beautiful Clerodenrums,  they are invasive and must be controlled. It is easily propagated by root suckers, seed and softwood cuttings. To see what is blooming in other gardens around the world please take a stroll over to Maydreams gardens.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Trials and tribulations

 I have been growing these sky vines (thunbergia grandiflora) by seed for the past four to five months. I got the seeds when my friends and I went on a countryside jaunt last September. They are supposed to be the white but I have noticed a difference in the shape of the leaves on one of the plants. Perhaps one may be the blue. The seed took about three to four weeks to germinate.
I am also trying to grow this Pride of Maderia (echium candicans / faustuosum). I grew this from seed and I have never heard anyone on this island growing this shrub. I am excited and hope that it continue to thrive. From what I have read it grows well by the seaside and is drought tolerant.

 My citrus crops of oranges and grapefruits have been destroyed by the birds, yes birds. They have pecked the very young fruits to the semi mature ones. This is the first time I have seen this happening. I will have to try to come up with a solution for this problem. I may have to get some fruit nets to prevent this.

They are finally here in my garden. The island is under siege by the Giant African Snail. I have just recently discovered them  and have been trying to control them. I go out at night and on early mornings with my headlamp scoop and bucket.  I collect them and burn them. I have now  baited around the areas where they have been sighted and I have been seeing a few dead ones. They are not too bad as yet and I do hope that they stay away from my plants. Another blogger friend Lotus leaf has them in her garden in India. She has mentioned that there is a natural predator, a bird by the name of a coucal a member of the cukoo family, loves to gobble them up. Sadly we do not have these birds here so we are down a gully with these snails. I read that Florida had them and it took ten years and many millions of dollars to get rid of these snails. Our government was giving free bait to householders and because a lack of funds that has come to an end. There is also a bounty on the snails and many people have been making some money. However that scheme hasn't seem to put a dent  in the snail population. I am also concerned about the use of the bait poison getting into our aquifers and contaminating our drinking water.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Blooming Friday

 OMG please do not stare at that untidy mess under these Starbursts!  I will get around to tidying up as soon as my back is able LOLLL

Hello and welcome to Blooming Friday.  The theme today is contrast. I am showing the contrasting colours of the starburst clerodenron  (clerodendron quadriloculare) For more of blooming Friday please go over to Roses and stuff to what is blooming in gardens around the world. 
I haven't been posting lately because of a back injury. A week  ago I had injured my back. How I did I manage to do this? Well... you see, I was tidying up the garden hose because I was expecting an important visitor. 
 As I wound the hose in a circle on the ground, I felt a very sharp pain on the right side of my back that made me stood still for a moment,  however I continued to finish the job. I then went on to mow the grass at the front with the push mower (it was self propelled) . The pain intensified  during the night and the next day. I couldn't sit up, bend nor lie on my side. Going to the loo was a feat for the fearless. To be honest I felt helpless and sorry for myself. Hubby went off to the druggist who sent me some anti inflammatory  tablets. The pain eased on the third day. Now I am almost pain free. Yesterday I mowed the grass, it was a bit painful sitting a long time on the mower but I bit the bullet and finished the job. Afterward I took another painkiller and was good to go when it kicked in. I tried touching my toes and with a bit of effort I touched them...Yipeee!  Have a great weekend my friends!