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Archive for the ‘Close to Nature’ Category


Continued gardening early this morning and around three this afternoon. Except for trimming the carabao grass, I’m done with the garden inside our fence. So happy to have transferred seven pots of Adenium seedlings.  Four inch of growth with established roots, just perfect for replanting. This is my first time to plant Adenium (through seeds). I noticed their robust stems, fat ones that made me smile.  Gardening is always a thrill when everything fall into place, a neat space to spend those idle mornings while watching the sun go up the horizon. I need to pick more calamansi, there are plenty of them.

Maybe tomorrow, I’ll tackle the overgrown grass  and weeds mixed with our dwarf Santan and the Snake plants. Since it is rainy season now, the unwanted weeds grow by leaps and bounds.

A friend sent me this meme. I love it. Some good and inspiring thoughts about life.

Have a nice week ahead.

 

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There is a typhoon, and as reported by our weather bureau, the fourth one this year. And there are two more low pressure areas reported. I thought there would be an early morning rain since they said we will be having “habagat” rains until the weekend. Thankfully, the sun is shining bright. It gave me the chance to garden for an hour before it showed its face.  I still probably need the morning sun even if my vitamin D deficiency is now at its normal level.

Fulling weeds, deadheading some plants, removing dried leaves – such a tedious process but it needs to be done. And to think we need to trim the carabao grass again. It’s growing by leaps and bounds now that the rains are here. The grass looks greener though, everything looks so fresh. And the dried Zinnia flowers that I scattered a few days ago are showing their lovely blooms.

There is always a surprise in a garden. Sometimes you discover something which you haven’t planted but it’s growing there. Thanks to the wind and birds that sometimes scatter those seeds. Last December, I bought some Japanese Persimmon and tried planting some of the seeds. Surprisingly, it grew to a young plant.

I wonder though if it will thrive into fruition later on. Does Persimmon grow in tropical countries like ours? This is just a trial, if it does well and good, I’ll be grateful.

My fingers are showing signs of ageing even if I use thick gardening gloves. There is something in gardening that makes you fulfilled. Remember that peaceful feeling while pulling weeds and dirt sticks into you hands? It really requires patience.

And I just love this quote from Alfred Austin:

The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body but the soul.

 

 

 

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Been focused on the local news the last three days. There are so many conflicting reports about the supposedly “fake” and “artificial” shortage of water here in Metro Manila. The Manila Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) has done some presscons and they are telling the people that it is because of the El Nino phenomenon. Though a former employee of  Manila Water said that the agency closed the bypass from the Angat Dam going to La Mesa Dam so Manila Water which supplies our needs can’t get enough of it. This was denied by one of the directors of MWSS, they are the government agency tasked to see that water supply in Metro Manila is enough for everyone.

Come to think of it, and it is puzzling. Angat Dam has enough water to last until the rainy season sets in. And all the dams here in Luzon have enough water except La Mesa Dam where the concessionaire Manila Water gets its supply. The government wants to push through with Kaliwa Dam which will be funded by China at exorbitant interest rates. The people are calling for transparency in dam and other China funded projects. I must say, the president loves China and is beholden to it at the expense of the Filipino people. Nakakasawa na. What has become of us that in three years, the drug problems have become even grievous and such other concerns are not being addressed properly? Drugs are cheaper than water? When one is focused on the mindset of “kill, kill, kill”, this is the result. He has even threatened the priests and the Catholic Church anew by telling people in his speech that priests deserve to die.

I took pictures of the garden blooms early this morning. summer is almost here and my annual and perennial plants are blooming.  The Zinnias I planted from seeds a few months ago are a bloom.

Zinnia

Two varieties of shrimp plants

I don’t want to upload them all here to save on space. Have a blessed weekend everyone!

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So how was your Valentine celebrations?  I deliberately didn’t blog yesterday because I was so excited to finish a book I’ve found by Danielle Steel. I seldom read a Steel book now except when I like the subject and the synopsis of the story. It was set in Norfolk, England. It was my 29th read actually  (15 books ahead of schedule).

I have just updated my gardening blog Gardens and Empty Spaces.

You might want to visit it. I uploaded several high res shots that I took of my garden blooms late this afternoon.  I don’t want to reduce them so I posted them all there.

Many thanks for visiting the site.

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Woke up a little late because I went back to bed after Josef left for work at 5 am.  What a cold morning, perfect time to have that green tea while watering and inspecting the plants in the garden.

I harvested dried pods of blue ternatea to give to friends when they come over. The two vines I planted have so many green pods and flowers and they are nice covers from outside. They are happily climbing my steel matting. I have two dried red okra ready for planting. A cousin wants to try planting too. When I posted those pictures of my red okra, a lot of people reacted asking, “is it edible”? Of course, it is. It is just like the green one only in a different color.

Some months ago, I got some dried Zinnia flowers at the park near the house. Just planted them this morning. I do hope, they will thrive.  Jom, our good neighbor gave me three cuttings of African tea and I put them in two empty bottles with water. They are now sprouting leaves.  I’ve tasted a freshly brewed cup before. It tasted great.

 

I wonder where I’m going to plant these once they grow a little sturdy. Lack of space is the problem although these are not bushy plants. They are medicinal too.

And here’s something I love about gardening.

The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just  the body, but the soul. – Alfred Austin

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Remembering the image of our front garden years ago when we still had those Koi fish swimming in our small pond. They are all gone now and the Pandakaki, Fukien Tea plants and Gold Dust plants have grown. The carabao grass had become a little sparse.  I have replaced some of my plants with new ones.

I miss my Koi. I miss their  golden bodies  swimming back and forth and the sound of flowing water made them seem to dance.

Sometimes, you long for the quiet moments – moments of reflection, moments of contemplation, moments that you love remembering time and again.

And the Christmas clock says, it’s three days, 11 hours to go before Christmas 🙂

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I wonder how many calories I burned doing three hours of gardening this morning.  Yes, I started early around 6 am and stopped by  almost 9 am with only a cup of coffee to go and the company of our “makulit” dog Noki.  I am not done yet trimming the carabao grass.  And I have to cut  some dried leaves of my prayer plants.

A passive pursuit but a good morning exercise….gardening, that is. Anyway, I want to see the garden at its best this coming Christmas. My Bougainvillea blooms are doing a crazy dance in the morning breeze. I just love those clustered pink flowers. Once it starts flowering, it does not stop. It is a perennial plant and just right for our sunny weather.  Our neighbor gave me some cuttings of cherries. I wonder if they will grow in our climate here. I’ll just try to grow them first in pots.

It was cloudy early this morning so it was a perfect time to spend in the garden. Took some shots a while ago.

My Bougainvillea

My Bougainvillea is located outside at the corner of our lot and it makes a good view of our grotto.

 

Prayer plants

I am proud of my two shrubs of  burgundy okra. The photo I took before was a little blurry so I took two more shots. I am letting the earlier fruits to mature before I harvest them for planting.

 

It’s flowering at the moment.

 

Crossandra

These Crossandra blooms are growing everywhere in the garden. I wonder if it has any other color aside from orange.

 

 

 

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And when the world is still and quiet,

You hear the song clearly in your head.

And it whispers PEACE.

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Son was on leave so we were able to finish trimming the carabao grass today. And the garden looks clean and lovely.

Our neighbor gave  me some cuttings of  Birds of Paradise plant and he also did the planting outside our perimeter wall.  It would be a nice cover for our fence when it grows and bear flowers. And do you know, the Roselle seeds I planted  a week ago are now showing their happy faces. Five of them have grown to about six centimeters. Success! Even my Kadyos has finally grown.

Tending the soil and planting have their rich rewards. My  white and orange lilies are in bloom. Though the flowers are only there for a few days, they add color to the garden. I tried the  Blue Ternatea flowers in our rice.   By the way, Blue Ternatea is also commonly called butterfly pea. Wow, I love its color and its taste. You have to boil the flowers first then extract the juice to use in cooking rice. Here’s how it looks.

As I didn’t take a picture of it, I got this from Google.

Discovering these lovely plants, experimenting on planting them in my small garden, what bliss!

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Way back when I was enamored with flowers  and blooms

Way back when a new bud is a promise of young life

Trying to capture the essence of life

in a flower.

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