Category Archives: vegetables

FLORIDA COLD

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We’ve had a little cold snap here in Florida for the last couple of days and it zapped some of my basil and my broccoli.  Maybe the broccoli will grow back but if it doesn’t that is all part of gardening.  I’ll plant again in the spring.

This morning I gathered some collards and have them cooking so I can take them over to my son’s for dinner tonight.  He loves collards.  I also picked green beans for dinner because my eight year old grandson likes them.  I try to go over at least once a week and have dinner with them.  I love to cook since they are so busy working and what have you.  I’ve been there and done that so I know what a hassle it can be.  Tonight along with those green vegetables I am making mac and cheese and lemon-pepper chicken two more favorites of my grandson.  He loves his vegetables and I am proud of that.

I still have a few flowers blooming in the yard and that makes me smile because my goal is to have flowers all year round.  Granted my Mums might look a little ragtag but they are mine and I think they are pretty.

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I love these dark red ones.  Strange because I had forgotten I bought them.  I usually look at the marked down flowers when I go to Lowes and find some pretty good bargains.  I have to be careful because I am a plant collector.  I will buy one and figure out where to put it once I get home and I take anything someone offers me whether it is seeds or plants.  But like I said I have flowers blooming in my yard all year round. which is a blessing.

I am still working on the manuscript “Forethought” but will try to give you an excerpt in the next few days.  Sometimes it is hard to write even though I love it because I am busy with the garden, my online classes and of course work at the hospital; all of which I find rewarding.  Once I get out in that yard it is hard to get me back inside so my writing is usually regulated to working at night after I do my classes.

I just finished a great novel I have to tell you about in another post.  Thank you for stopping by and have a blessed day.

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LET’S GIVE THANKS

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I’m sorry that I didn’t get this blog out yesterday but I had a doctor’s appointment and time just got away from me.  We have so much to be thankful for.  I always thank God for letting me live in a country where I am free to blog on whatever I choose and I can worship when and where I want.  We know that God determines where we live even though we might think the choice was ours.  In this wonderful country we can choose our careers and be as successful as we are willing to work hard.  I saw a billboard the other day that said “The distance between your dream and reality is call action.”  I fully agree.

The garden is coming along just fine as you can see from the peppers above.  I am so proud of them.  This is the first year that I’ve had such a large beautiful bounty.  My eight year old grandson had a sleepover with me this past weekend and he was excited to pick them.  He chomped right in to one like someone might eat an apple.  I’m glad he likes vegetables.

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He was thrilled when he gathered the eggs and found nine in one nest.  The young hens have started to lay so now we are getting plenty of eggs.  Granted they are small but will get bigger as the girls mature.  He took the photo of this one on her nest.  The older girls are still molting so right now they aren’t earning their keep but that’s all right with me.

I sent in a query letter to see if I can get my novel “Defiance of Destiny” republished.  Hopefully this time by a publisher who will give more help with the promotion.  I’m almost finished with the suspense novel “Forethought” and soon will be sending it to get a copyright.  Once that is done I have to finish the women’s drama novel “Tomorrow’s Memories.”  As you can see I have plenty to keep me busy and out of trouble.  Maybe I’ll include and excerpt from one with one of my blogs.  Please let me know if you would like that?

Thanks for stopping by; have a blessed Thanksgiving and keep writing and gardening.

God Bless.

 

MANUSCRIPT REWRITE

Good Monday to all.  This past week fairly flew by so here we are again.  My garden is looking beautiful to me and it brings me so much joy; not to mention good food.  It is exciting to see the tiny carrot and beet sprouts peeping out of the ground.  While they are not as fast growers as the greens it is still wonderful to have them.

My mustard.DSC_0685

Collards.

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And turnips.

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I wish you were all close enough to share in the bounty.

Several of you have asked whether I am writing a new novel or not so I’m happy to reply “yes.”  I am in the process of doing rewrites to my suspense manuscript “Forethought.”  Please don’t hold steadfast to that title because an agent or publisher might decide to change it.  If they do it will be all right with me.  I’m not hard to live with though my husband might beg to differ.  I also have another women’s manuscript on the burner.

I love writing because I know what is going to happen next.  While writing is fun it is also hard work getting what I see in my head down on the blank page so my readers can also see it.  I think my love for writing is a gift from God and I try to be the best I can be at this task.

Many of you know I am also an avid reader.  I will say now as I have probably said a thousand times and will most likely say another thousand that you don’t have to be an author to be an avid reader but I feel you must be an avid reader to be a great writer.

Now I need to get back to the manuscript or I will never get it completed.  Yeah, I might squeeze in an afternoon nap as well.  Thank you for stopping by and if you are a writer keep writing and enjoy it and if you are a reader keep reading.

God bless.

 

 

FRESH EGGS

DSC_0681   Here we are back to Monday again and life is good.  My young chicks have started to lay.  Not all eight are laying right now but at least they have started.  Yesterday and today I got five eggs each day so that was good.  It is good the young ones have started because the older hens are molting so that means no eggs from them for a while.

The young chicks scratch all the hay out of the houses.  Why?  I have no earthly idea.  However, they leave a small amount in the little red house and that is where they have laid their legs the last two days.  Saturday I found two eggs under a couple of the houses so I had to have a talk with the girls and explain the idea behind having the nest.

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They are all so funny.  The six older hens crowd into the little red house to sleep at night and the young go in the new house.  There is a fine house the size of the newer one in the middle but they all insist on sleeping where they choose.  The older hens laid their eggs in the middle house (when they were laying.)  Each house has a nice run and they all join to a larger pen; plenty of room.

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They love day old bread and any fresh greens that I am not using.  That is their treat along with their regular food.  Their eggs are so rich and creamy.

The new beets and carrots are peeping out of the soil.  Plus the radishes and English peas that I planted last week are sprouting.  This past week we had the first from the turnips and they were delicious.  Right now we have plenty fresh green leafy vegetables.  Healthy and good,

Thanks for stopping by, please come back soon.

God bless.

 

TIME WEATHERED OR WHAT

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The word this week is a great one for me.  I mean, heck, when it comes to describing weathered I could just put my picture out there (don’t worry I won’t, don’t want to scare the regulars) but it would be the epitome of the description.  But it brings a question to my mind.  “Does weathered mean by years or could it be by cold or heat or etc.?”

So far this year we have had the coldest weather we’ve had in several years and it definitely has taken its toll on my vegetable garden, flowers and fruit trees.  The papaya trees were loaded with fruit.  I suppose it only zapped the leaves on the trees and the roots are safe (positive thinking babe.)  If it did get the roots as well I will just replant.  I’m almost sure all I need to do to the banana trees is just cut them back to the ground and they will sprout new babies.  But it is too cold to get out there and mess with anything right now.

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Sooo… I should be working on the rewrites of the two novels I have perking on the back burner.  Maybe perking is not the right word because I haven’t worked on them in weeks.  Oh yes, I know I should and now that it is too cold to work in the garden it is a perfect time to write.  Do I have writer’s block?  No, I’m just plain old LAZY, can’t lie about it.  I even know the finish and everything; just need a good kick in the butt to get moving.  So with that said I better get busy.

Thanks for stopping by please come back soon.

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GOOD MORNING GLORY

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Morning Glories are temporary flowers but oh so pretty.  They usually only last a day but I look forward to going out in the early morning and seeing them in bloom.  It is a beautiful way to start the day.  This year I planted several colors but all that grew seem to be the blue.  Oh well, I’ll just be thankful for what I have.

My vegetables are doing well and I am so happy with them.  We should have fresh mustard for dinner tomorrow.  I wanted to have it tonight but I kept flagging around and I thought it was too late to gather some today.  I like to gather my greens early in the morning.

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The collards, onions, radishes, broccoli, cabbage all are growing nicely.

DSC_0254          Last Friday we made cages for the tomatoes and we have several small tomatoes on the plants.

DSC_0244     And I predict we will be able to have lettuce from our garden in a couple more weeks.

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This is the first time I’ve tried to grow lettuce in containers.  I researched it and they say it can be done so we shall see.  All I can say is so good so far.

I also planted some red cabbage in containers last week; just to try, I never grew red cabbage before.

My hot peppers are doing great.  We really don’t eat them so I will pickle them and find someone who likes spicey.  They are pretty and fun to grow.  The sweet peppers had a nice sized pepper but some varmint decided he needed it more than I do.  I will put cayenne pepper on the plants and that should deter him.  Those peppers are for my grandson so the varmint does not know who he is fooling with.

Thank you for stopping by.  I hope you have a blessed day and will come back soon.

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GARDEN WEEK 4

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I promised an update on my garden, so since I will have my wonderful grandson tomorrow I thought I better get this done tonight.

As you can see from the photo above it is coming along just fine.  Look closely at the mustard.  I do believe we will be eating some in the next couple of weeks.  What do you think? I can hardly wait.  I absolutely love reaping the result of my hard work.  Like collards mustard greens is an acquired taste either you will or will not like them.

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Remember I told you about planting the radishes, beets and carrots last week?  Well most of the tiny plants are peeping out of the soil.  You can see the radishes but the other two will need a little longer before they will be easily seen in a photograph.

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If you are wondering about the straw it is hay; part of the compost from my chicken pen.  My chickens pay for their keep in more ways than one.  It’s a good thing I get compost because right now most of them are molting and I’m only getting one egg a day.  I know the egg comes from Amera because it is blue and she is the only one that lays blue eggs.  And another factor that figures in to the “no egg production” is the shorter days.  They don’t lay as much when they have less sunshine.  However, we should change time soon; fall back, so we will be eating eggs again.

Thank you for stopping by.  I will keep you updated on the garden.  I’m so happy it is doing well.  God truly blesses me. Until next time happy gardening and God bless.

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GLOW…A SMILE

There really isn’t much about glow in this post unless you count the sun and smile on my face when I see my garden.  I’ll try to do better later in the week.

I promised to keep you posted on my fall garden so these photos are from the third week of it.

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On the scale of life I believe gardening is high on the list.  True it is hard work and sometimes in vain.  Sometimes I toil and my efforts just don’t pay off.  Today was a prefect example.  Over the summer I planted sweet potatoes, my first try at it.  This morning I dug the potatoes and found only a handful of small ones.  I guess I got over-anxious and pulled them up too soon.  But that’s okay because I needed the space they were taking up in my raised bed.  In their place I planted beets, radishes and carrots.  Now we have to see how they will grow.  I’ve never had much luck with beets.  I know for some places it is too late in the season to plant these vegetables but I don’t think so in Central Florida.  Our seasons are much different from most places.  And it was definitely too hot for them in the summer.  I just ask God to please bless them so I’ll have enough to share.

Collards,onions and banana peppers.

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Mustard, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and tomatoes.

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Yellow squash and garlic

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Maybe from these pictures you can tell how everything is growing.  Gardening is a slow process.  The peppers are also doing fine.  I was able to pick a few of the hot ones this morning and make pickled peppers. Now I’ll just have to find someone to eat them since I don’t like spicy food.  But I do like growing the peppers.

Thank you for stopping by and please come back soon.  We should have collards and mustard ready for Thanksgiving.  Ahhhh Thanksgiving in the south.  Y’all come, you hear.

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FALL JOY

first soil     The joy of getting my fall garden in the ground is something that only fellow gardeners will understand.  You start with a blank slate, so to speak, but you have a picture in your mind so you start adding plants.

At the first of this week my beds were not exactly bare.  Over the summer I had allowed them to rest and of course some weeds decided it was a great place to make a home.  There I was on Tuesday and Wednesday busy pulling out the unwelcome guest and filling a large trash can to be put out at the curb to be picked up by the county with other yard garbage.  I definitely didn’t want to add the weeds to my compost pile thus giving them a new chance to grow and multiply.  I already have some that I have no idea how they got started in my yard but here they are.  Probably with the help of the birds and/or squirrels I feed;  ungrateful loots.  Only kidding I love the birds and enjoy watching them.  Now the squirrels… well let’s just say I don’t welcome them as freely.  But to make a long story short (I know too late) I was busy preparing the beds for the fall vegetables which I finally were able to plant on Wednesday afternoon and early Thursday morning.

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Now you know how I am and that I will pop a plant in any container that will hold it.  I had a couple of recycle bins from years ago, before the county furnished us with a large can, and I have been using them as  planters.  But when the storm Irma came through she decided they should help support part of a huge limb she flung to the ground; see the before and after below.

Before Irma.

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After but I still use them.

DSC_0899     You just can’t keep a good woman down.  And as long as it can hold potting soil it will serve my purpose.  They, along with an old laundry basket, are the new home for my grandson’s sweet peppers.

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And his old wading pool is keeping the yellow squash and garlic.

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Yes, Thursday I was definitely sore in places I haven’t been sore in a while but I am so happy I have my garden planted.  Now the joy of watching it grow and sharing what it produces will be worth the toil and soreness.  I will do my best to keep you updated with photos.

What does all this have to do with pedestrian?  Heck if I know but I did do a lot of walking while I was weeding and planting so I hope that counts so I’m not cheating.

Thank you for stopping by.  Now I think I’ll have a nice cold glass of iced tea and relax for a bit.

God bless.

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COLLARDS

DSC_0076.JPG      I think collards are probably a green vegetable that is usually eaten in the south United States and even then some have never developed a taste for them.  If you’ve eaten kale, well that is a cousin to collards and has a similar taste. Yes it is a strong flavor and I suppose it gets some getting used to.  Frankly I love them and so does my oldest son.  The rest of my family will “kindly pass thank you very much.”  My seven-year old grandson surprises me how healthy he eats but he also does not like my collards.  Anyway, they are a must plant in my fall garden along with mustard greens.  Now my husband can absolutely eat a lot of mustard greens.

     I’m telling you all that to tell you this.  Last fall I planted collards as usual and we ate them at various times and gave some away to friends and neighbors throughout the fall and spring.  But what really surprises me is the fact that they are still growing strong.  Week before last I gave some away and put some in the freezer. This past week I was able to gather (that’s how you say harvesting greens.  You don’t harvest or pick “you gather in the south) another mess (also a southern word for enough vegetables for a meal.  Stick with me and you will learn Southern).  The mustard greens, tomatoes and other spring vegetables are all gone but these collards keep hanging on and producing.

     I planted sweet potatoes and since this is my first time for trying to grow them I’m excited to see how they do.  Trust me I will keep you posted.  The whole family loves sweet potatoes.

DSC_0464     As you know gardening is one of my many hobbies and I truly enjoy it.  It is a wonderful feeling to plant a seed or small plant then watch it grow and produce.  If you are stressed gardening will help you relax and forget all the problems.  Try it.

Thank you for stopping by.  Until then, keep praying, smiling and seeing “how does your garden grow.” (quote from Mary, Mary Quite Contrary a Mother Goose rhyme.)

God bless.

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