Today’s project

This is what I did this afternoon!

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I have had this little rock garden planned in my head for two years and finally got it all together and got it done.  It’s well established hens and chicks and some portulaca that has not been doing well (from neglect.)   I lifted it all out of this spot and added some quality top soil (purchased) and started adding back in the plants and some rocks.  I’m quite pleased with the arrangement and I think the portulaca will come back to life and blossom in this fresh new soil.  Can’t wait to see their bright blooms.  If not, it’s back to the nursery to buy some more.

I had an eye for appreciating texture today and decided it was time to share that, too.

Butterfly bush (one of three varieties in my yard.)

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Swamp milkweed–yes, I know it’s a ‘weed’, but it is also the preferred plant for the monarch butterfly to lay its eggs on, and other butterflies and bees love it, too.  What other reason do I need?  Besides, it’s pretty and I love the pods when they burst and let loose all that lovely fluffy stuff.

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Echinacea (coneflower.)

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Artemisia. You can’t see the finest fuzziness of this, but it soooo soft to touch.

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Arkansas Blue Star.  It is HUGE, about 4′ tall and the wind blows it about on its tall stalks like feathers.  I love this plant despite the fact that it only blooms briefly in mid-spring.

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I also picked the last of the snap peas and green beans and served them to GUESTS yesterday at a wonderful meal.  We also had the first of the cherry tomatoes and a good bit of buttercrunch lettuce in our salad, along with some donated zuccinis from another home garden.  And…get this….I had some heavy cream that I didn’t need for other purposes, so I mixed it till it turned to butter and buttermilk.  I used both in my homemade blueberry cobbler with fresh picked berries and I also served it with the hot green beans.  How cool is that?

On another front, I’ve really dug in (no gardening pun intended) and worked on my fiddle this long weekend, made much easier by breaking down and buying a music stand.  It was killing my neck and making me work much harder with muscles that were cramping up unnecessarily.  I am working hard on Lynchberg Town, though I have Shortenin’ Bread pretty much under my belt (for those following the Cold Antler Farm Fiddlers’ Summer Challenge.) 

In my internet searching of fiddlers I found the most wonderful young person who recorded her first fiddle album at age 14!  Her name is Sierra Noble (now age 19) and she also has a new 6-song EP for sale that has 4 lovely vocals, as well as two great fiddle tunes.  I think The Warriors Lament (which she composed at age 11!) is probably the most beautiful fiddle music I’ve ever heard and it is my inspiration.  This young lady is from Canada and performs standard mountain tunes, “Metis” and Celtic, among others.  What a gift! You can hear her music on her website and see videos on youtube. 

Hope everyone else enjoyed their long weekend, too.  I had time to rest, time to do what HAD to be done, time to share with family and time to do what I wanted to do.  How great is that?  Back to work tomorrow.  Oh well, I’ve been able to restore and recharge for a difficult work week.

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