The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

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Lisa B.
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Location: Centurion, South Africa

Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Lisa B. » Tue Dec 27, 2011 12:01 pm

Another picture. This one you can see my fledgling lavenders.
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“The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” ~ Amelia Earhart
“The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

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Harriet
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Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Harriet » Tue Dec 27, 2011 12:19 pm

Ugh! Lisa! Sure hope your garden drains soon! We are sharing your woes way over here today although I think our rain is long-lasting to have caused this wet mess, maybe not so fast as your rain! Wow! Dd33's family had to cross a moat to get to our house from their car this morning.

I do know how you are feeling, though - can't go outside without thinking about it pretty carefully here! I haven't let the hens out because I know they will be more miserable outdoors than in. The floor gets tracked fast, too, doesn't it? Here lots of little shoes tracking!

The plant closest in the foreground looks like my mother's liriope.

Harmony, I missed your question - yes, right now the black hens look very much like those in the photo. The feathers are so black they have a green sheen like that.

Nancy, bantams like her silkies will lay a lot more egg (large size for their body type) for the cost of feed than my large hens.

Indiana

Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Indiana » Tue Dec 27, 2011 12:23 pm

Wow LisaB that is a lot of water. I hope it drains quickly.

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Lisa B.
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Location: Centurion, South Africa

Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Lisa B. » Tue Dec 27, 2011 12:41 pm

Harriet, the plant is what we call a "Hens and Chicks" here in South Africa.
It should be an inside plant. I keep them outside.
There is another one on the other side of the steps.
I took the photos from the top of my steps.
Coco (DDog#1) doesn't like the water....she will hold to do her business until she is certain that she won't get her paws too wet.
Foxie (DDog#2) has no problems with running through all the water.
Just past the end of the wall is my gate....so we cannot get out of the garden at the moment.
One good thing is that everything is lush and green.
“The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” ~ Amelia Earhart
“The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

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Lynlee
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Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Lynlee » Tue Dec 27, 2011 7:16 pm

Lisa - My dad used say - Great weather for ducks! and they would love swimming at your place. Hoping the water is gone soon. I do prefer a green christmas to a brown one.

Grass is growing quickly here.
I cut and poisoned some of the Japanese sacred bamboo by the house. Need dig more babies from runners, and get to those around the corner growing amongst an azalea. Maybe it all gets a hair cut, and I try plan some azalea cuttings where I'd prefer them. I'd like to lift and move the agapantus too. Flowering now.
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Harmony
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Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Harmony » Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:50 pm

OOOh, Lisa, that's a lot of rain. Could you contour your ground a bit so it doesn't puddle so much there? You have the plants I love. Hen & Chicks, I can't seem to find them here. They had one they called "similar" and I tried it with no luck. Lavender too. We had a big big bush next to our front porch when I was growing up and I loved it. We used to sit there and crush the blossoms in our hands and smell them over and over. I have tried french lavender (only kind I've ever found here) couple times but haven't been successful. I would try it again if I could find it.

Lynlee, I googled agapantus (sp?) and that is beautiful and I really like the color. Are yours that light purple color?

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Lynlee
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Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Lynlee » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:12 pm

Its almost the color of jacaranda flowers Harmony. yep - I think I spelt it wrong. agapanthus probably more like it. long stems with a ball of blossom. I'm thinking you will know jacaranda where you live. Similar latitude to me only N - theres Florida.
Just begin.
Living this day, today
Take a reality check; Remember to breathe; Do what I am able to do.
Look for the good in all.

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Lisa B.
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Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Lisa B. » Fri Dec 30, 2011 2:30 am

Harmony, another common name here is the Spider plant but as you can see in my photo mine is the solid colour leaves. Spider plants have green and white leaves. My plants also flower like the Spider plant, with the tiny white flowers.

If one googles "hens and chicks plant", the plant that comes up on the searches is a succulent. This is not what it is known as in South Africa.

Lynlee, I have a Jacaranda tree smack bang in the middle of my garden. These trees are now classed as Alien Invader trees here but one doesn't have to uproot it if it is a certain number of years old....only young trees and saplings are taken out. Jacaranda trees are beautiful when in flower, but once they start shedding the flowers, they make an unholy mess all over the ground - it's like a purple carpet.
“The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” ~ Amelia Earhart
“The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

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Harriet
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Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Harriet » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:23 am

I fully recognize the plant now, seeing the little "ball" of a "chick" against the wall, I think. My dfirstmil used to grow this at a window as an indoor plant and called it "hens and chicks" but later people told her it was rightly called "spider plant" so she started saying that. I remember we'd comment that the name "spider plant" was not very pleasant when you were used to "hens and chicks". She had successfully grown new plants from some "chicks" I think. At least I remember her trying, with long "u" hair pins to hold them in a different pot while still attached. I wasn't expecting to see it outdoors and thriving, LisaB! You have a green thumb because she could never take it past her screened porch.

It certainly favors my mother's liriope when so lush. She had it flanking her back door and dstepson helped with lawn care and killed one side with herbicide.

Being waterlogged - Our problem here with a big rain will be 2 places: between our walkway and driveway, and near the henhouse where we open the doors - people door and hen door. Dstepson helped us put in stepping stones at both places but of course they sink over time. And I don't think the ones at the henhouse were ever tall enough. Dd33 complained when they were here and had to borrow a shirt. Her little boys were stopped at a "moat" between getting out of the car and making it to our walkway, and it took her so long to get each boy over the moat that her top was soaked. :oops: I need to investigate a bridge!!!

dd13 will start her science project soon. She's going to plant half her seeds in potting soil that has 1/3 "lava sand" and half without. Anyone ever heard of this? Supposedly (hopefully) the volcanic sand will make a measurable difference in germination and growth. I figure she'd better use fast-growing seeds!

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Lisa B.
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Location: Centurion, South Africa

Re: The Productive Backyard, July to Dec., 2011

Postby Lisa B. » Fri Dec 30, 2011 2:58 pm

Harriet, thank you for the complement. These plants have been outdoors for around 7 years. They actually need re-potting now, so will need to buy some new pots. They don't have as many "chicks" as when grown indoors. I think that if we re-pot then they will start growing again. I also do not take them inside during the winter. All we do is ensure they are watered regularly.

The two lavenders are from Margaret Roberts range. This lady is known as the herb lady of South Africa. I love the fragrance of this lavender especially when one rubs ones hands up the stems and leaves. The fragrance is so lovely. I only planted these at the beginning of winter this year - around the middle of June.

Harmony, I cannot level the ground anywhere in the garden. My landlord has the entire property up for sale for around R4 million. Also the sewage pipes all run under the area where the water was. Landlord regularly digs up the area when pipes start leaking. We keep an eye on the grass in this area as any sign of leaks causes patches to grow much more and thicker than other areas.

Laughing in my head at Harriet's thought of a bridge. Would be a lovely design detail though in the garden.
“The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” ~ Amelia Earhart
“The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand


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