Borage and blooms

I finally got my continuing education credits completed. Whew!! I was freaking out there for a minute when I realized I only had two weeks to get 10 hours in. They usually have a seminar for us procrastinators the last week in May, but not this year. I guess the big guy was feeling a little sorry for me because I found out you can take a CPR class and get four hours. When I checked the calendar I saw they had a class the next day 30 miles from where I lived. While I was on the phone scheduling that class I found out they were having a class the same day 15 minutes away. Once the customer service guy found out it was for work, he waived the two-day in advance sign-up so I took the class that day.

And I hadn’t know it, but you can do an article review where you read articles and answer questions and you get two hours for that. Did you know that chocolate is made from the dried seeds of the pods of the cocoa tree and that the average tree produces only two pounds of dried cocoa beans? It has absolutely nothing to do with my job, but I did two articles and got four more credits. Last night I did an on-line webinar that was worth two or three hours. So, yippy, that’s done. Now if I could just stay off the internet long enough to catch up with my regular work.

Well…I’ll get back to it when I finish this post.

This weekend I found out another quality of borage besides tasting like cucumbers and having pretty flowers that attract bees and butterflies.   It has diuretic properties.  This isn’t something I had read before I questioned why I was running to the bathroom so much this weekend (hope that’s not too much information), but after I sat down and retraced my steps and realized borage consumption was the only variable in an otherwise normal day, I did a little research. 

According to some of the information I have read on Borage, it’s almost a miracle plant.  All parts are edible down to the seeds which are used to make borage oil.  It’s been reputed to do everything from give you courage to cure a hang over.

I can’t wait until the flower stalks start coming up.  In the mean time, here are a few things I’m waiting on in the garden…

The Golden Shower Roses

05-27-09

The regular roses05-27-09 (16)

The regular peonies05-26-09

Some more of the irises…I’ve got bunches scattered around the yard05-27-09 (6)

The tiger lillies…I counted 11 potential blooms on this one

05-27-09 (4)

Finally the strawberries05-27-09 (8)

Happy Gardening!!!

Here’s what happened with the “hoop house.”

Nineteen days ago I threw some plastic over some more PVC pipes to make another covered wagon  “hoop house.”  100_0061

It wasn’t the prettiest thing in the neighborhood and I had quite a few “is this chick crazy” looks, but you guys understand.  The weather is finally staying pretty warm and last night was the first night that I kept the cover off.  Everything is coming right along.

The strawberries are fruiting.  These are the Free Cycle strawberries I got last year.  (Sorry for the washed out picture, I just didn’t feel like going out and taking another one).100_0200

The borage is growing.100_0202

I’ve read that they get fairly big needing 12-inch spacing.  And since I have five in one square foot I’m sure I’ll end up transplanting some of them.  The leaves, which taste like cucumbers, can be used in a salad, the flowers are a butterfly attractant, and borage tisane (tea) is good for your mood.  I likes that.

The bush beans are growing (no actual beans yet, though).100_0203

The tomatoes are doing fine .100_0204

A couple of them have flowers starting to come on.100_0227

This is the Egyptian Walking Onions.  Pretty soon onion bulblets will start developing on the top. 100_0205

I got them last year from my aunt and forgot to plant them.  They stayed in a plastic bag outside the whole winter, and when I planted the first bed with the “hoop house” (3-15-09) is when they went in the ground.  They can take a licking and keep on ticking. 

Here’s where I planted a yellow squash and a volunteer potato popped up right next to it.  I haven’t decided which one, if either, I’ll pull.

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Here are three lemon cucumbers.  I’ll have to start all over with the pickling cukes because I planted them too early in cold soil and they’re just sitting there.100_0211

The peas are on their way.100_0213

All of that is going on in this one bed (minus the peas).  100_0214

My spinach (front row, second from the left) is growing, but slowly.  All the tomatoes have a globe basil planted in the same square (forgot to take a picture).

I was thinking of harvesting all of the garlic chives since they’ve started flowering, but I threw the petals onto a salad and they’re pretty good.  But this is what really changed my mind…

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Whatever it was this little fella was looking for in this garlic chive blossom must have been good to him.  He stayed around long enough for me to take four pictures (with a low batter in the camera, so it took a little longer for me to be able to get to the next shot).

The next few things to do will be to…

  • remove the PVC pipes and put in stakes for the tomatoes
  • figure out where I want to put the watermelon and canteloupe
  • figure out where I want to put the pole beans
  • plant more cucumbers
  • find a better location for the raspberry containers
  • separate the blackberry canes
  • figure out where I want to put the asparagus
  • empty out the big black composter to use to grow sweet potatoes
  • fill up some of the extra pots to grow something edible in them

But…before I can do all that, there are a few work-related things I’ve got to get done, so I’ll be MIA for a few days.

That’s it for now.

Happy Gardening!!!