Theme gardens can be fun for adventurous gardeners who want to shake things up with Colorful annuals. Their raison d’etre, reason for living, is to bloom and make seeds. To keep them full of their bright and beautiful blooms, frequent culling of the old blooms is the secret. Paying attention to color combinations will enhance bedding petunias such as blue and yellow; red, white and blue; primary colors-red, yellow and blue; all pastels.
Read more abut theme gardening in my recent guest post about Theme Gardening – Set the Theme, Set the Mood – at fellow author Sloane Taylor’s blog!
Emma Lane visits today with what I hope will become a series of her expertise on plants, how to use them in our gardens, and what to do when a season ends. The blog is all yours, Emma! When I moved…
Source: Author Emma Lane’s Gardening Tips: Annuals and Perennials
I love to write stories about strong women, but The Duke and Miss Amabel Hawkins is by far my favorite. She not only manages a large estate with ease, she is horrified the duke would allow his own property to go to ruin. When he dresses her down for “meddling” in his affairs, she can only assume he has lost his mind. Growing up without a mother and not much of a father, Amabel never dreams the person out of line is she. Women were thought to be mentally handicapped during the 1800’s, but Amabel is convinced the duke is insane.
How much different is society today? It’s startling to realize women vote only recently in history. How many ways can you think of that have changed the way women are treated—and how many ways can you think of that the unfair treatment of women still remains.
The Duke and Miss Amabel Hawkins’ story has a happily ever after ending, after a mighty struggle and much compromising on both sides. I hope you enjoy their journey to partnership and eventually to love, even as you despair of ever getting a fast ride on Fat Pony.
Can an arrogant duke overcome his prejudice against a beautiful but managing female in time to find true love and happiness? The Duke arrives home to find his estate under the firm control of a beautiful but managing female. His suspicions are fueled by his recent task of spy-hunting and he wonders if Amabel Hawkins is just who she seems. While a dastardly spy lurks, a wicked man poses as her cousin threatening to take over the guardianship of her young brother. Amabel might be falling in love, but she knows for certain the duke would never approve of a meddlesome woman, and she decides to flee his estate. Will the duke finally realize the true value of the woman he loves or will his prejudice ruin his chances forever?
Fatigue and the effects of the brandy on top of the ale now gave his gait a distinct wobble. He chuckled, amused at his condition.
As he reached for the portrait of great Uncle Barney, he lurched into the back of the red leather sofa in front of the cosy fire. “Deuce take it,” he exclaimed when a rounded arm rolled into view. He spotted the gentle curve of a hip and walked around to the front, where he spied a tumbled haze of dark curls hiding a face. It is indeed a female—a sleeping female.
Who was she? The gown was too rich for his household staff. Curious, he knelt beside the sofa.
“Only one way to find out,” he whispered and moved one dark curl. He sat back, satisfied when a handsome face swam into view. She sighed and rolled over, revealing a generous figure and a pair of rosy lips. She might be Sleeping Beauty—but not one of my relatives. He leaned over and kissed those tempting lips.
As he lingered there, she sighed and came partially awake. He could not resist. He deepened the kiss and sounds of satisfaction like yum and umm came from those delicious lips. Her hand stroked his face, then reached around his head to pull him closer. Delighted with this turn of events, the Duke of Westerton complied enthusiastically and extended an arm around a slender waist. How much of the ale and brandy had he imbibed? Dizziness overcame his senses as he slid down on the floor and knew no more.
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Mums are starting to fade and some growers swore to you they were perennial, right? You planted them last year and initially they came up, then died. What did you do wrong? Nothing, I assure you. Mums are shallow rooted and sometimes spring freezing and thawing will heave them out of the ground and they actually die from lack of water.
They came up but grew tall and straggly. Well, did you pinch them a couple of times during the growing season? Professional growers do just that to cause them to bunch up and form those lovely, smooth mounds. Natural growth is what you see when they are not pinched. Either way is pretty, but your expectations probably need adjusting.
Mums need to be separated and moved about every other year. They are prone to diseases and this keeps them healthy. In the spring take a small spade and cut the clump into quarters. Then pick a new location in your garden or share with a neighbor.
Now is the time to bring in all your house plants. (Inspect for bugs.)When the night temps are around 40 degrees or below, they must come in. Initially the new acclimation will cause them to drop leaves. Probably they will recover; don’t over water. Some easily adjusted plants are spider plants, asparagus fern, and wandering jew. A pot of geraniums will thrive in a bright window and bloom most of the winter.
MURDER IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, a COZY MYSTERY set in the Fall in small town America, Hubbard, NY.
Much maligned Goldenrod (Solidago) has burst onto the scene with the first bright hints of fall amidst groans and complaints from hay fever victims. No matter how many times a correction is offered, most refuse to release from blame the poor golden wild flower. Innocent, I claim! Bright gold with lots of pollen beloved by the bees, goldenrod is falsely accused.
Ragweed (Ambrosia) is the culprit. Quietly creeping onto the fall canvas with tiny white flowers, it is frequently growing along side its more beautiful neighbor. Its potency is well known to allergists who diagnose allergic rhinitis. The difference between the two plants is mainly in the pollination. Ragweed is carried aloft by the wind far and wide, quite capable of reaching your nose and causing your sneezes. Goldenrod pollen is heavy and doesn’t travel far from the plant. Its nectar is beloved and mostly pollinated by insects, bees, and butterflies. So enjoy the brilliant golden wildflower as it trumpets the beginning of fall while you avoid that noxious weed nearby.