Summer is here, what next?


Well, the grand and glorious Fourth of July is past. A grand day it was. There was a little breeze, the parade was wonderful, and a good time was had by all. Now, we are really into the groove of summer events.

What have I been doing? Well, for one thing, my early morning coffee (early for me that is) takes place on the backyard deck. Emma and I enjoy the shade out there before the blazing sun hits the deck floor. I have a miniature green house out here. The Caribbean Hibiscus enjoys this setting. It’s shady enough in the morning, so they aren’t blasted with the hot sun all day long. It took me quite a while to realize these trees like to have moist shade as well as hot sun. Out on this deck they get both. This is also my repotting shed when I replant the house plants into new containers so they can thrive during the winter months when they only see sunshine through the windows of the house. The hibiscuses enjoy southern winter sun, but the yucca plant likes the north window. My three year old rosemary plant likes northern winter exposure, too. Surprisingly, herbs seem to thrive better when less sun beating down on them.

This year I have added quite a few herbs to my collection. I found a curry plant at a nursery in Cloquet. I have never seen one before, but it has a wonderful fragrance and you can just about taste the curried chicken cooking on the stove. Alas, today which is Sunday, is a real steamer of a day. There is no way I am going to cook anything of significance in my toasty kitchen. Don brought in a huge bowl of lettuce from the greenhouse, so I think salad is in order for Sunday dinner. Well, maybe I’ll add a hot dog to two. That might not heat up the kitchen too much.

Flowers that usually bloom closer to the first of August are already flowering. Somehow it seems like summer is on a fast track, so my advice is to really spend time enjoying these wonderful days while we can. One of the other added attractions this summer is a young buck who seems to like the strawberries and primrose plants. I have seen him come out in broad daylight to enjoy those lovely, yellow flowers. Emma, the dog, thinks this is a great new game. Not only have we discovered she is truly living up to her heritage as a rat terrier mix, but she has developed an interest in the deer population. It’s a royal game of tag when she spots that young deer in the flower beds. The problem is that she hears him out there at night, too. Just about the time you’re ready to fall asleep, the canine trumpeter is letting us know we have company right out the bedroom window. She’s a great watch dog, but I don’t know what she would do if she actually caught it. I know what she does when she catches the rats. We hold memorial services every other day.

Still, summer is here in glorious triumph. The saving grace on these hot days is that we always have a nice breeze that flows across the front deck. Don and I sit out there in the evenings and just enjoy the gardens. I placed a little fountain out there and the cascading water is music to our ears. Like the birdbath, a fountain brings life to the garden. The fountain offers a nice source of water for the birds and butterflies.

Its lemonade and iced tea time. Make the best of it.


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