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"Where better to care for the soul than in the details of our daily lives?....The soul has an absolute, unforgiving need for regular excursions into enchantment. It requires them like the body needs food and the mind needs thought... An enchanted world is one that speaks to the soul, to the mysterious depths of the heart and imagination where we find value, love and union with the world around us. As mystics of many religions have taught, that sense of rapturous union can give a sense of fulfillment that makes life purposeful and vibrant." ~ Thomas Moore.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Bliss Through Gardening and Citrus Trees

Hello Beautiful Ladies....

I've been gardening as mentioned in my last post. We bought 6 citrus trees and terracotta pots for them since they do well in pots and I do want to keep them a bit dwarfed, not tall, as I want access to all the fruits. I love the Tuscan Gardens which feature lots of citrus in terracotta pots. South Florida is a citrus growing state but there haven't been trees growing in homes. Lately the Home Depot and Lowes have been featuring citrus alot and we got 1 lemon, 2 tangerine, 1 grapefruit and 2 orange different types.
The scent of Orange Blossom is the most amazing single note scent to me. I cannot begin enough to sing its praises. I discovered Orange Blossom when I was in India and its been love ever since. When I was in Italy I fell in love with lemon trees lining the Amalfi Coast.

I'm very into beautification of this property both for my personal therapy to have and to see the kinds of gardens I've wanted to see here that is within my finances to achieve, and because gardening is the best therapy. There is nothing better than spending lots of time with Nature, with soil, with plants, trees and flowers, with all kinds of greenery like tillandsia, succulents and everything else, including my veggie patches and herb gardens. We love going outside to cut herbs for cooking, or making an entire salad from the Gardens.
Alot became overgrown as I never planned to actually be in this house so long, but I am here so.......
so I'm doing lots of pruning and redoing every corner of this place. I want this place in the best shape....I want to walk out and be in awe of the Beauty of Nature, to give my spirit and body a dignified place to have this land alive and vibrant, producing food and scent and beauty for my spirit and soul.
I believe the way to transcend the mundane is to find your bliss. Joseph Campbell talked about this alot, but I personally feel it is true in my bones. Being in bliss can transmute your cells and rejuvenate you. This alone says alot, it directly points to the path of Transcendence. And for me, Bliss that is accessible to me comes through gardening, as both a thing to do and a thing to have. But having gardens that are beautiful, healthy, fragrant and productive, nurturing and protective.

But lest anyone think it is all wonderful here in the sub tropics, please note that it is very difficult being outdoors here for several, I live by an airport and the trainer planes fly over my house all day every day and the noise is extremely distressing, I cannot stress this enough. I literally cannot breathe sometimes and I want to scream but cannot. Two, the mosquitoes want to pick me up and carry me away. I don't know where they come from, I am very cautious about leaving any water lying around, but it is a South Florida menace. And three, the humidity, yes even in the winter at 90% is horrid and it increases in the summer. I have to stop very often and come inside for all of those reasons. Too much time is spent in preparing, like war, to go outside and how to mitigate circumstances when I cannot work out there without being harassed by something.  Even if I am covered up which I try to do, the mosquitoes go for my face and neck....and then the noise of planes grinding in the air.....all is not paradise.

However, for the first time in my gardening here for 12 years, EVERYTHING and I mean EVERYTHING is doing well, flowering and growing like I've never seen it before. Even the house mate has noticed. We walked around and looked at everything. We've never seen this. Usually we have several somethings dying out, its season over, or it just didn't make it, but right now everything is doing beautifully and this is nothing short of amazing to me. I have no idea what caused this. I fertilized for the first time ever as I am loathe to use any chemicals at all but the bougainvillea's needed it as I do want them to bloom dramatically. And I did this only in the front, but the plants and trees in the back are doing well too! Even our Mango Tree has blossoms on it when its Mother right next door is just growing fresh leaves! It is quite amazing to see this. An Almond Bush also is sprouting all new leaves in every node and the older leaves are falling off. I've had this one for years but never seen this. I think I know what it is but that will be for another post. 

The front is done and now we are doing the back. The front got all the old non blooming bushes taken out, we did everything ourselves and replaced them with bougainvillea's of different colors. They bloom on and off during the year. And the common theme and what pulls everything together will be the citrus trees in pots.
I want lots of bloom and low maintenance. Yes, I want it all :D.

So I have lots and lots! of pics here of some of the progress in beautifying this garden working with the minimum budgets we have.

....I recently fell in love with succulent wall gardens, and I thought to begin a small one with these pots which had tillandsia in them, but I want something now more showy are the pots.


this was a candle holder which had glass holders, I replaced them with terracotta pots and put it outside.

some succulents I got....funny, how Lowes suddenly got a whole new shipment of these in when I was there. I wanted to do this sometime down the road, but they don't always get them and the colors were so pretty!



the burrows tail I put at the bottom, it should grow long and drapey....the others will fill out and have color.


 I have some extra succulents and I made this little beauty too. I especially love the rosettes.....

In the front TerraCotta Garden by the Garden Gate, one orange tree. It got blue lobelia at the base. All the trees got ribbons tied into a bow....and you know? they LOVE IT ! They are all growing just beautifully in the short time we've had them, 2 weeks now, and they are all producing blossoms....whose scent make everything feel just right. :D

This orange tree is by the front porch in the veggie is totally covered with blossoms, and the scent is wonderful. I can breathe well with that scent.

 I bought 4 Dragons Wing Begonia's.....I just could not leave these blossoms in the store. One man bought almost all of them! He left a few for me, thank goodness.....they are the brightest window boxes I've ever had.....very ''showy'' as John puts it.....but they are lovely.

 they are mixed with some fern and coleus, whatever I had in them previously....I love the mix.

 John got this petunia for the salmon color it had when he got it. It has since grown into a deeper color, more like coral.....its very bright too.....likes it in this pot too......


This below  is the lemon, it was in bud when we got it, the scent makes me happy, have I said that already ? now the lemons are growing.....when the flowers fall off, they turn into fruits......I adore Mother Nature! I planted some bright green sweet potato vine and blue lobelia at the base of this short tree.


 I also got a topiary....I find them to be structurally interesting. I need to get some ground cover, I'm thinking of creeping thyme, mint and oregano......again, if it doesn't flower or fruit, is edible, unless its moss goes.....I want everything here to have purpose. Next to the topiary is the Gardenia, sparse right now but will bloom again in summer.


I planted a purple petunia in the base of the Gardenia with some lysimachia which drapes beautifully when full.

 This is the grapefruit.....:D

This Grapefruit has grown already in 2 weeks with new leaves and now budding into flowers !

In front of the Grapefruit is a blue lobelia in a pot, I adore blue lobelia! 


Purple cabbages look like giant roses to can they not?? look at this beauty


The Tomato Patch is currently the Cabbage Patch....or as I prefer to call them, my Rose Cabbages....

This is where the old bridge was. Trolls damaged it and we have replaced it and are reinforcing it to be sturdy enough to walk on and to hopefully prevent Trolls from doing any further damage ! :D   On the left I have mint and oregano growing all over the ground, some yellow snap dragons which are slowly coming back and a few other things. On the right we removed a non flowering bush and are putting in another citrus but its going to be planted in the ground. I will have to figure out what to cover the ground with, I'm thinking more mint.....can't have too much, my neighbor loves it too.

back sauna is covered with a green cover, but this back entrance has lots of sparklies in the morning with the crystal prisms I have there with some pearls and other the sparklies!

Deep Pink Geranium hanging on the arbor. You can see a corner of the bridge there.....

 This is one of the wild corners where we let Nature do its own thing. That table I could not get rid of so it sits beneath the Australian Fern. I wanted to do something pretty there.....

Canopy of Australian is amazing to stand near it and look down into this, like from the top of the world......

 So I did a few cloche arrangements.....some live sheet moss, tillandsia and old grape vine and sea shells.....simple.




This is in Lettuce Lane, where we are growing Napa Cabbage.....I'm going to make Kimchi with these like I did here.....

This is what fresh looks like..... sigh......

 My bench I finally fixed. It is so old it was falling apart but I couldn't let it go. I took the falling pieces off, rescrewed them with new screws, and painted the bench with the little bit of pink house paint I had left, just made it.
On either side of this bench are the two tangerines with mint planted at their bases. I also leveled some of the flagstones with soil and the fresh soil is going to be planted with crocus bulbs which I bought a bunch before Christmas, some thyme in between the stones, and more mint which are sitting in pots there.

There is also a Peach Tree there in a pot that will go in the ground. I'm going to Espalier that one. :D


I have planted lettuces in this patch too, with some Elephant Ears to be umbrellas in case some sun begins to peek through since I have pruned a tree and more light begins to come through at this time. I have some live sheet moss lying there until I figure out what exactly I'm going to do with it. I really need a football field amount of it to be truly happy :D:D:D.....but for now it sits in the cool moist shady lettuce patch.
Under the Gazebo you can see the bridge standing on its edge, and the treated wood on the table to be attached later by John and then put in its place. Can't wait to plant around it afterwards :D:D:D

 ok, we're back out front again and the Orange Tree in blossom.....this is the gigantor collards which just keep growing and growing and growing.....I juice the leaves with bananas and apple juice, its lovely!


We removed a palm that was curbside in front of the lawn at the edge of the property, and replaced it with a to it, I added the pot I almost threw away. Painted it....yep, pink like the house, and planted it....with Purple Dianthus and Coral Petunias and Lime Green Sweet Potato Vine. There were exactly 3 petunia flowers when I planted is obviously very happy here too. I have to say though, this has not always been the case here as mentioned, something is definitely helping my plants all be happy and grow and I have my suspicions as to what it is, Pammie :D:D:D LOL

 The Front Porch again.....see the collards almost as tall as the tree? Its almost as tall as me.

When they are low to the ground, they also look like gigantus roses veined with white ! lol

  Sun and color.......white gauzy drapes filtering the it.......

 Wow.....was that enough ? well thanks if you lasted this long..

Happy Planting......when you can.....

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and with A Delightsome Life


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Barbara Streisand's House Tour

Hello Everyone,

Its been a while.
I've been way up and way down.  Many people are wondering about global insanity these days for good reason. I keep getting messages from people that they no longer know what to do, how to be in this world. Of course I'm talking about sensitive connected people who know there is something going wrong and spiraling down. We are seeking sanctuary and respite by avoidance, and more home quiet time. Good thing.
I am working on the gardens still.....all of them. I have Green Gardens, and Soul Gardens, Friend Gardens and Spirit Gardens. I like tending to all of them. Gardening is my Love, is my passion.

When I bought the keys to put onto my Garden Gates, I heard something in my said


That is the truth.

I'm again, head over heels in love with moss!....I want it everywhere! This pic is from Moss and Stone

I have planted the citrus trees in their pots. I have yet to plant one orange tree which is COVERED in blossoms....oh my beating heart!......and a peach tree which is going in the ground. I took out a bush that did not do well all these years and we are putting yet another citrus tree in that spot.

Today I got up early to go to Lowe's to buy some wood to reinforce a garden bridge John just purchased from ebay to replace the one that broke down....those dang trolls under the bridge!........and this one I want to last long. I am treating it with a moisture, and troll protection, :D which I used on my potting bench which is doing very well I must say. After I treat the poplar hardwood we will attach them to the bridge to make it sturdy so that we can actually walk on it with confidence, I will take pictures. But for now this is the bridge we got.....$_1.JPG?set_id=8800005007

Today I bought some succulents to place into a hanger I have on the fence wall.....I'm thinking about making a succulent wall...have you seen those?? There are tons of them to look at on google images. GORGEOUS!

There are lot of things I want to do and I want to do them all now. But I cannot of course, because $ is the restriction, it is the only one I have in fact. :D

But today, I wanted to share something I found....I went to Barnes and Nobles to return a book someone got for me, which I had already and she said I could just go and change it, but alas, they could not. I decided to see just quickly the Home Decor section. This has become a kind of therapy for me, and I now begin to understand so many women who throw themselves head first into decorating, non stop and incessantly changing things out for every mood, season and holiday and I'm not referring to those who do this out of habit or some kind of obsession, I mean those who feel within a change happening and they move to effect it on their outer world. I have realized designing is one pathway to Beauty and to keeping up with the natural cycles of change. When we can't change the world we change ours. It is not just "something to do", it is a way of keeping one sane. It is a way of women empowering their creative forces within their domains by mimicking Nature in how Nature is changing all the time but on a micro level.....a tiny one, a personal one.  For this reason alone, I now have a greater respect for those who design and decorate .....when its personal and seems natural.

I have thought of changing things out maybe 4 times a year, for the 4 seasons we DON'T have LOL ......we have only one and a half. I have pretty much discovered my favorite style and looks, but I still love seeing what other women are doing. I went to the Home Decor section and one book hit me right away....Barbara Streisand's "My Passion for Design".....she does that too? Women floor me really, how many talents they have, how they can do so much! I picked up the book and immediately the pictures awed me, but what was more amazing was that they were all of her her basement!! with a street of shops?? OMG! I needed this book, so I looked at the price and $60.00 was not going to happen, ever. When I got home I got online and amazon had one for $1.97. Click! Mine. I spent my last $6.00 for the month on this book, and I cannot wait to get it. So I googled videos....and indeed there was a beautiful short movie of Barbara's Home Tour and I do think you will enjoy this! and get many ideas of what is possible.
I do believe we should dream big. Barbara Streisand is amazingly talented, I don't think there is anything she cant do.
Here's the video of her tour....16 minutes of awesomeness....enjoy!

After I click send, I'm going back out to work play with the succulent garden to be and my moss!!....create a nice shady dish garden for a table I didn't want to get rid of in the back section which is looking like a Jurassic Park with huge oversized leaves.....rather tropical....appropriately so. :D
blessings to you all!