Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Planting the Big Trees in my Florida Garden

The last 3 trees came today - 2 triangle palms and 1 sylvester date palm.

How you may ask, do you get the big trees into such a little garden?

Glad it cleared the roof! Here are the triangle palms with the pink tabebuia in between.

Great job driving the crane.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Planting Trees in My Florida Garden

I celebrated Earth Week by planting trees! I began working on a landscape design the first year I moved down here as part of a course I took. Today the first 6 trees went in. Here they are in the middle of the yard.
Here's my pygmy date palm, Phoenix Robelenii, being planted.

I have 5 of these beautiful cassia trees. They should fill out nicely to block the houses across the water. They have yellow flowers and bloom for a long time. After the second one was planted I saw my first butterfly!

I'm so excited to be starting my garden.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Emily gets another octopus!

Thanks Judy for the new octopus. Emily loves it!

Monday, April 20, 2009

American Orchid Society

I took a trip to the headquarters of the American Orchid Society one more time before the gardens close at the end of May. Unfortunately they are having financial difficulties. I hope they will be able to reopen again in the future.

The gardens are located at:
16700 AOS Lane
Delray Beach, FL 33446-4351
I am just learning about growing orchids. This is a Phalaenopsis, the moth orchid, which is one of the best orchids for growing in the house. The blooms last for months. I bought one at Valentine's day and it is still blooming happily 2 months later.

They come in all sorts of colors. Here's one of my favorites.

This is a Paphiopedilum, or lady's-slipper orchid. It looks much like the lady's slippers we see in the woods up north.

This is a Cattleya - I had one of these in my wedding bouquet.

Not sure what type of orchid this one is, but I love the color.

I am looking forward to learning more about growing these beautiful flowers.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Happy Birthday Emily

Today is Emily's 9th Birthday. She still loves playing with her toys. Especially floppy things like the octopus.

She has a blue octopus and a green octopus.

We've been going to the park every other day, and she is in great shape. If she didn't have her white face, noone would know she was 9! Happy Birthday Emily!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Grandview Heights Historic District House Tour W. Palm Beach

Last weekend I spent Sunday afternoon at the 14th Annual Grandview Heights house tour.

Grandview Heights was established in 1910. It is located in West Palm Beach within walking distance of the downtown, City Place and the Kravitz center.

Many of the homes are Craftsmen-style bungalows.

One of the coolest houses is owned by the artist Bruce Helander, who my friend Beverly knew when he was the President of Rhode Island School of Design. Here's some of the rooms I liked.

The gardens were wonderful, and show how much you can do in a small space.

A tropical oasis.
Bromeliads growing in the trees.

We ate a delicious Caribbean-style dinner of pork, rice & beans, and fried plaintains sitting under tents at the street party. As we ate, we listened to music by area jazz singer, SAMM.

All the men liked the vintage automobiles.

This looks like a great place to live.

Blowing Rocks Nature Preserve

Blowing Rocks Nature Preserve is one of the most beautiful beaches I've found in the West Palm Beach area. It is located at 574 South Beach Road, Hobe Sound, FL 33455-2804. Its owned by the Nature Conservency and is a barrier island sanctuary located on Jupiter Island, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River Lagoon.

The water is such a beautiful turquoise.

There are lots of sea grapes growing in the dunes.

The sea grapes form a tunnel that you can walk through.

We have never gone swimming because everytime we've been there we've seen man-of-war. But, its a wonderful place for a walk. Doesn't it make you wish you were in Florida?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Florida Bobcat Sighting

This week my vegetable growing class took a field trip to Green Cay Farm in Boynton Beach. I had been interested in this farm as they are the closest place with a CSA (community supported agriculture). It was very interesting to visit - like many farms in Florida they use sugar cane as wind breaks. The vegetables are grown in sand blocks which are covered with reflective plastic mulch. The plastic keeps the weeds down, soil evenly moist, and some bugs away.

I got there early and it was very quiet and peaceful. I saw what looked like a cat. Upon closer inspection it was no ordinary cat - it was a bobcat. There were actually two of them.

They come out of Green Cay Wetlands, nearby, and eat the rabbits. That is good since the rabbits eat the vegetables.

This is the first bobcat I've ever seen. Florida is not all developed yet...