Summer 2014: In The Garden
This is our second summer here. We've been remodeling the little 1950's abandoned block house, foreclosure-built-on-a-sand-pit, off South Tropical Trail in Merritt Island, Fl. I guess it's official; we're back in it, public school, 9 to 5, mortgage and all that goes with it. Somethings never change. Dack is remodeling the house. I'm digging in the dirt, amending the sandpit with oak leaf compost. Basically, I'm raking my neighbors yard. I'm all about basic. Between a warm blanket of the Banana and Indian Rivers, this area is known for growing tropical species. Here are some pictures of what's growing good at our place, courtesy of regular afternoon thunderstorms.
The banana tree (top middle) was just a foot tall when we planted it. Everything else was started from seed. The front yard is covered (in a wild and unorganized way) with Mexican Blanket Flower, Native Florida Cassia, Periwinkles, California Zinnias, Yarrow, Dill Weed, Tropical Milkweed, Candlestick Cassia and Snow Queen Hibiscus (from the neighbor's cuttings:) . Lilo and Stitch ( 170 pound English Mastiffs) won't let me put anything in the back unless it's bigger than them. So, everything "special" is potted up in the front and transplanted to the back when it's big enough. This has yet to happen. Jiao-gu-lan/ Immortality (bottom right) is potted in the shade of the banana's. It's a metabolism boosting adaptogen I love to eat everyday. That's Goji (bottom left), started from a teeny weeny seed. The taller plant is about two years old and I made the second one by "layering." Candlestick cassia (top right) inspired "Fly Away Happy", brings butterflies and feeds their caterpillars... and Cardinals and Blue Jay's and Mockingbirds- lol. Dwarf Poincianas "The Pride of Barbados" (bottom middle), are still just a few inches in height, but branching out beautifully in their safe little pots.
The backyard garden is a fenced-in corner with Alan Chadwick's famous Cherry Tomatoes and Wild Florida Blackberries on the fence behind them (top right), Stars and Moon Watermelon (top middle) and insect/snake repelling Lemon Grass (top left). Cucumbers (bottom left) are starting to climb the fence and the peppers aren't big enough yet to photograph:) My favorite tea herb Tulsi/Holy Basil is in there too. But, not like it's supposed to be. It just won't grow the way it did in Costa and I can not bear photographing such minute amounts. The Morning Glories (bottom middle & bottom right) are from last year's seed harvest. They're supposed to be climbing the string to make a fort for Maya. But, they're outside the fence and it's not going exactly as planned. Who knew dogs ate Morning Glories? Have a great Summer. Bloom where you're planted!