Friday, September 24, 2010

Things I looked at this morning

This is a flower on the hibiscus plant I grew from a seed my cousin gave me.  Isn't it breathtaking?  

Almost six inches across!  Don't you just love old yardsticks?  My mom broke a few like this on my butt as a kid; it was her choice weapon for spanking me.  Probably because there was always one close at hand, thanks to her wallpapering sideline.  

When I removed the strawberry plants from the bed in front of the house, I hated to see that space just sit there growing weeds, so I grabbed a ten-cent envelope of flower seeds I had on hand and planted them, without reading the envelope.  

This is what I got.  

Here they are from the other side.  I wish I knew what kind of flower this is; I'd be sure and avoid buying that kind of seed from now on.

Here's another mystery plant I purchased over two years ago.  I like it.  

Here are the walnuts I've gathered so far.  I spread them out in the barn so I can periodically stomp them to get the outside hulls dry enough to remove.  Someone left a comment saying she was going to pick up black walnuts, but after reading about them, she decided it was too much trouble.  Honestly, it's no trouble at all.  You pick them up from beneath the trees, which I consider fun because it's done in the great outdoors.  You remove the nasty hulls:  I used to spread them on the driveway where the car would run over them a few times, which works fine except occasionally the whole nut will get cracked.  Removing the vestiges of the hulls will stain your fingers, but it eventually wears off.  You let the hulled walnuts dry for a couple of weeks, and then all you have to do is crack them and pick out the nutmeats.  My mom always stored the hulled nuts in a garage or shed; on cold winter days she would put on a coat, go outside with a hammer, and crack a dishpan full of them.  She would bring the cracked nuts inside, and in the evening she and Daddy would pick out the nutmeats as they sat around chatting and waiting for bedtime.  
I planted beets in the spring, and only a few of them came up.  I think I made borscht once, and I left the rest of the beets in the ground all this time.  Today I pulled up one huge beet, peeled and diced it, and microwaved it.

The color of the beet was interesting, sort of streaked with white.  I didn't know if it would taste good or not.  

That five-month-old beet turned out just fine, and I fixed it up Harvard style.    

Cliff wanted me to take a picture of his plate, so here it is.  Stuffed peppers, green beans, and Harvard beets, all brought in from the garden this morning.  The hamburger in the stuffed peppers, of course, is from Sir Loin, Bonnie's calf from last year.


  1. Anonymous4:51 PM

    Donna, your posts almost always resonate with me. I remember so well my Grandma making us kids stomp around in her driveway-hulling black walnuts! We didn't really want to do it, but she made us. Walnut pie was not a favorite of mine at the time, but it is now! Karen

  2. Donna, I am pretty sure that bush/flower is a type of Marigold plant. I have a few this year that were 4-5 feet tall and bushy with flowers just like that. Some of my flowers were bigger though. I bought mine for the 4H kids at the highschool at the time they were just a single straight plant and look what they turn into. I was telling my neighbor that I can grow some huge Marigolds in my garden. I use them for pest control for the tomatoes.


  3. We have walnut trees in our backyard so I'll have to try this out!! That meal looks delicious!!

  4. Lindie12:00 PM

    There is something so satisfying about eating what you grow, isn't therre?

  5. Nice pictures! And that plate of food looks really good..

  6. Yum!
    I like stuffed peppers and beets any way they may be fixxed: boiled, sliced and steamed, or pickled.

  7. Eler Beth wants an orange-ish hibiscus, but I don't know if I have a good place to put one. Do they like a lot of sun? Any particular type of soil they don't like?


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