Monday, June 25, 2012

Loads of work to be done...

First of all, congratulations to Gwen (comment #5). You're the winner of a KT Harvest Moon strip bundle - just as soon as I sort thru the 50 lb. box! In the meantime, I have lots to do to prepare for pictures for the new book, Loose Change, in a couple weeks. Here's what Robert and I did over the weekend with a little help from the grandsons altho they spent more time in the sand pile and pond.
 We used the old cedar fence posts that had enclosed the pasture for over 60 years as a perimeter around our big shade tree to hide the bare patch of dirt and cover the roots. I started out wanting an 8 foot diameter. We ended up with over 20 feet. Bigger is better. It really did need to be bigger to not be dwarfed by the tree but our little bags of potting soil just weren't going to fill it. Sooo...

 the guy dumped a load of dirt this morning to fill my little planter. Guess someone has a job to do this weekend. It's gonna take alot of plants to fill it, too. Anyone up for dirty fingernails in exchange for some fat quarters???

This is really more my speed of gardening - a half wind-burned plant in a cut-out chair. I water it every morning and it's still thirsty. Oh well...the best looking things in my garden are the succelents that are thriving in this extremely hot, dry weather.


I have an old chicken feeder full of chicks 'n hens, aloe and other dry-loving plants. They're loving this weather!

Let me know this week if you have any handy gardening tips about dry, windy, hot conditions and how to keep things looking perky. Someone will walk away with the July KT Stash pattern, Holiday Ties, and some scraps to get you started. Until then, stay cool. LMH




49 comments:

  1. Water thoroughly in the evening after the sun has gone down...then again early in the morning before it comes up, mulch, plant jalapenos, and pray for rain. LOL. I would be out there hauling that dirt to your new spot in a heartbeat. I love that kind of thing. We live in desert NM. 112 has been the norm here on the ranch lately. 2" of rain last year. 1" this year. Haven't found much that will grow here. Sage likes it and purple fountain grass seems to be taking off. Not sure how it will survive the winter though. Thank you for the chance to put my name in the hat. I have a FQ bundle of KT flannels that are hollering for some attention, but I have told them to hush until the thermostat falls...a lot. However, I am dreaming of curling up with them by Christmas.

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  2. Wear sunscreen and a hat, and stay hydrated. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  3. I'm a city girl now, but my grandfather, who was a gardener was a great believer in mulch as a covering to keep moisture in. He also felt that it was best to water early in the morning, before the sun came up - he said that watering at night was a problem because the darkness encouraged mold. The other thing he did, that I always thought was nuts until I tried it on my porch plants, was cut up small bits of sponge (sea sponge) and put it in the soil - it absorbed some of the moisture and released it later in the day according to him. I find it helps my potted plants during the hottest days of summer. Good luck with your project!

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  4. congrats to Gwen.
    I don't think there is much you can do but stay on top of watering the plants in that kind of weather. It is a lot of work.
    There is some kind of potting soil that holds moisture but that would mean repotting.

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  5. We are hot but not particularly dry. It's very humid in Florida, but we still need water, water, water!! If our plants and yard do not get a good drink at least once or twice a week, they get very sad and wilted. Even the indoor plants seem to be affected. I love your fern sitting on the chair :-)

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  6. Mulch on top helps hold moisture in too. We use grass clippings (that haven't been treated) or old newspapers covered with a bit of soil to hold them down. ;-) Your fern is so cute! Good luck!

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  7. My tip is...forget the garden - go to the Farmer's Market!

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  8. Water Water Water every day because the wind will dry out those plants - a sprinkler might work if is low
    Stake the plants that might be tender
    Thanks for another fun giveaway.

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  9. Yes those silica gels packets that many products have packets in them . I save them and use in soil around plants as they suck up water and release it when needed. Many times they come in shoe boxes or electronics, any product where they try and keep moisture out. If you know of someone who works in retail and unpacking clothes ,they are in abundance in clothes from foreign countries. martha

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  10. Can't help with the gardening. If it doesn't grow without any tending, it doesn't get planted at my house! :P I do know that someone at work had tried the mulch made out of old tires and said not to use it. It absorbs the heat and burns the plants. Not sure if they are even selling it any more...

    Love those little bow ties! Thanks for the chance to win!

    Sandy A

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  11. I don't have a green thumb, so I wouldn't be much help. I oils rather be quilting. :-) Thanks for the giveaway.

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  12. Yay!! I am so excited to be the winner!!! :-) I love all of your fabric designs-- and patterns! What a great way to start off the week-- winning some Kansas Troubles! :-)

    We typically have lots of heat here in south Alabama, and some windy days, but not like you have in your corner of the world... It's very humid here most of the Summer.. Succulents are wonderful! One plant that I love to plant-- because it's very hardy-- and drought tolerant-- (not sure if it's a succulent, but it does have fleshy leaves) is moss rose (also called portulaca). It is beautiful and so easy to care for. I have to buy new plants every year, but my Mom (who has the greenest thumbs of any one I know) gets volunteers each Spring. :-)

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  13. I water real early, while it's still dark, to give the water a chance to soak in rather than evaporate. I also have soaker hoses that we put in around the flower beds. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  14. That was a great idea to use the old fence post. What ever you plant will need to love the shade. I hope your first weeks of summer are fun.

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  15. No tips here, my thumbs are Very Brown. Hubby has the green thumbs in our family but if he can't eat it, he won't water it! LOL. Cute bowtie pattern. Wonder if it would work made from men's neckties? A lady gave me TWO SUV's FULL of men's neckties! Want some?

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  16. I love your hen & chicks planted in the chicken feeder, what a neat idea! Right now in WI we finally have received some rain, everything was so dry and I was getting tired of watering everyday. I have some shady areas and found the hostas do real well there, you might want to try some of them. Thanks for the chance at the giveaway!

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  17. There is a product called Soil Moist that can be added to the soil to help maintain moisture, mulch helps and soaking plants in the AM. Can you use a soaker hose? I have good luck with Day Lilies and Vinca in the hot, dry summers.

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  18. I don't have any good tips for you, but I've loved reading everyone else's. We're having the same type of weather and drowning things in the dark seems to be the only marginally effective way to keep them going--and at the moment there isn't a lot we have planted.

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  19. With 100°+ temps for at least the next seven days AND living in the desert SW, no tips from this part of the country. Our patio potted plants and hanging baskets have just wilted. But it's a DRY heat, so they say. ;-) Hoping the monsoon season starts soon.

    I do know that over watering will create mold and root rot, so take it easy with the watering can or hose.

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  20. I am not a good gardner, just being truthful! But would love to win the give aways as usual! Thank you for your generosity! Love KT materials!! Patty D. from Crystal City, MO

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  21. I'd like to know that too. Lots of people are going with xeriscoping and rocks but I love green. I don't do hanging plants, they dry out too fast in our almost constant wind. I have lots of daisies, they overtake everything for about 2 more weeks, then I kinda limp along until the fall mums come out. One year I planted onion starts and I just let them reseed themselves. They have a fun flower and pretty green and I can use them when I want. Love your giveaways. Thanks

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  22. I think mulching would help some. I put those water absorbing pellets in my window boxes and potted plants and also use water globes--love those. I've never tried any of that directly in the ground, but it couldn't hurt!?!
    Karen in Breezy Point

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  23. The only thing I have found to keep things hydrated is lots of soaker hoses and tons on mulch! Hope you keep everything alive! I just returned to Kansas after a week in North Dakota. How gloriously cool there! Another friend and I spent the week sewing in Mary's barn/studio. We made 2 sets of 3 quilt tops. One a wall hanging and the other a throw. We used all Moda and mostly Kansas Troubles fabrics from a couple fat packs Mary had before retiring up north. We had so much fun! I always take some new Kansas Troubles up to her since her quilt shop does not always carry much of it. We love KT!!!

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  24. We've been using rubber much for several years. it seems to hold water in the soil longer. Best thing is to plant items that are local to your area. There are plenty of drought tollerant flowers.

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  25. Unfortunately I am nit the one to be giving gardening advice. I have a "black" thumb. I seem to kill all my plants. I seem to do a little better with my quilting.

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  26. Soak straw in water and place around the plants for the first few weeks of their new life. It doesn't have to be "thick-thick" just a nice shading over the disturbed ground. You can regather and soak the straw or just soak it with hose every few days. If my wonderfully delightful grandchildren were not here, I would come help you in a heartbeat. I hear that Pam Buda is good in the flower bed. :)

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  27. My tips from VERY hot and dry Texas: mulch really well and replenish it mid-season; water early in the AM only (watering at night prompts mold) and plant NATIVE plants. I have beds of Lantana and Salvia that flourish in our tough heat, while other flowers have faded away despite good care. Next up - Cactus!!
    Good luck with your gardening & thanks for the chance to win!

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  28. Oh that is so hard... I have some geraniums that are doing really well, and some others that are not. the ones that are doing the best in the lack of rain we have been having,I repotted those w moisture control potting soil. we haven't had rain in weeks. It has gone around us, misted us once, and bypassed us. Even my potatoes & tomatoes are not doing as well.

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  29. Can't help with gardening tips but hope to pick up some for myself. I didn't plant alot this year but my perennial garden is really suffering from the lack of rain in southeastern WI. I have been watering alot more than I ever have hoping to save what I have.I bought some new hostas to add around the deck and can't even dig for them as the ground is so dry and hard. Lov e the little bowties!

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  30. If the area you want to keep looking nice is close to a water faucet, try hooking up a soaker hose and laying it all around the area. Then you can turn the water on just enough so it does not go up into the air and let it soak the ground around your plants. Wind and heat have been hard on our garden too, but we just try to keep watering it enough so it doesn't wilt. Hope you find something that works for you.

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  31. Buy the hardiest looking flowers that are available in almost-July. Fertilize and water till you're dead on your feet, then water more. A grandkids job? My mind's vision of your planter under that lovely tree is joyous.

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  32. The only tips I have are to buy flowers/plants that are drought tolerant. Here in GA, verbena, lantana, and vinca seem to do well. I don't have a green thumb but I can almost always get these to grow! If I were close by, I'd love to swap sweat and dirty fingernails for fat quarters!!!

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  33. I think a local plant nursery is a good source of information for plants that do well in your area.

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  34. Where I am in Utah we are about ready to dry up and be blown away, that is if we don't get burned up with a wildfire. My husband would answer your question with plant rocks -they can take care of themselves. I on the other hand love my flowers. Although t have cut back drastically this year. I made a lare planter around one of me ash trees in the back yard. It was more to keep the tree alive than anything. It was in the lawn, but we devices to make the driveway bigger and removed the grass. No grass no water. And the tree wasn't happy. I planted peonies, dianthas and iris. Very pretty in the spring. Just green for the summer.

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  35. BOy, if you figure this one out you'll be a millionaire. Your fern in the chair looks wonderful compared to my pitiful SW Kansas burnt fern. Praying for rain. jmh

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  36. Good mulch and native plants. In Mich. geraniums and french marigolds. Soaker hose is great for the evenings and mist in the mornings to keep the dust down if its windy. :) love the fern!

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  37. I have to admit it here...I do not garden. I love to look at beautiful gardens and wish I had one in my yard but I do not. Every year I look forward to the blooming of my Blackeyed Susan garden because that is about the only flower (other than the azaleas and roses) around this house. My husband tends the lawn and the bushes but is not a great gardener either!

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  38. It appears that our nation's current weather patterns are favorable only for rock gardens this summer, I'm afraid. However, I'd certainly recommend one particular Internet resource that might help: Fellow Arkansan, P. Allen Smith's web site at http://www.pallensmith.com/
    Smith's web site should prove an invaluable resource for any type of gardening questions and tips.

    By the way, I picked up your "Plum Perfect" pattern booklet at my local quilt shop this week. I plan to make the pillow first. I won't feel guilty a bit for staying inside my cool house this summer. Sewing beats out gardening efforts for me this year because I just can't tolerate the heat.

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  39. Water, water and water some more. My mother has advised me that it's better to water early in the morning, so since I work and she doesn't, she is now in charge of turning on the water. LOL. Thanks for the chance to win. Love it!

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  40. With the 107 degree temperatures we will be having this weekend, the only thing I can suggest is to WATER a lot. Would enjoy winning your nice giveaway. Lana D.

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  41. Have you ever heard of Prickly Pear Catcus? They are so pretty when they bloom and very easy to grow. They would be great in your chicken feeder.

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  42. Lynne, you are doing exactly what you should be doing...early morning watering is a must.

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  43. Mary in OklahomaJuly 1, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    Something I read, and tried last year, is potting with disposable diapers! Using the cheapest disposable, biodegradable diaper (from the dollar store or wherever) has seemed to help my potted plants - mostly herbs. I spread a circular, paper coffee filter in the bottom of the pot with a little of the potting soil (with moisture crystals) on top. Then poke 6 to 8 holes in a disposable diaper with scissors or a screw driver and open it up in the pot. Fill as usual with soil (again with moisture crystals) and plants. You still have to water often, but everything made it through last years record setting heat and drought. So far this year we are still enjoying our herbs. Crazy, I know...but I'm holding on to my diapers.

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  44. We have been using cedar mulch around our trees and in our flowerbeds. There is a particular organic product called SuperThrive that is great for all plants! You might look into getting some, and of course, keeping up on the watering, but only in the early morning or late evening. Stay cool up there in Kansas! We had the delight of seeing KS for the first time last month!!! I want to move there. :) We saw the Little House on the Prairie Museum near Independence and drove through the Flint Hills and stayed overnight in Manhattan. We really want to go to KS again. Much prettier than TX (in my opinion)! Blessings...Shannon

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  45. My suggestion for your potted plant in the chair, is Miracle Gro Moisture Control. My sister & hubby have been using it for their potted plants during this dry summer & haven't lost any flowers to forgetting to water every day. I always mulch my tomato plants with newspapers covered by grass clippings and this year I even mulched the onions because it has been so dry. So far, so good ... but we sure could use a rain soon! Good luck with your yard projects! The heat has resulted in at least one good thing - I've gotten more time in the sewing room as it's too humid to be outdoors all day!

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  46. you got outta Colorado just in time! The whole state's on fire now! When will you be doing the cruize? I'm ready , just trying to get some friends lined up to go with me!

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  47. Trying to deal with hot and windy Kansas as well. Thanks for the chance for the stash give away.

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  48. Good morning, Lynne! I just wanted to say a great big "THANK YOU" for the wonderful box of Harvest Moon strips!! I have been having the most fun playing with them-- sorting, stacking, drooling over! ;-) The fabrics are so beautiful-- I have dozens of ideas on things to make -- now where to begin! :-) Thank you so much!!

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