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June 17, 2017

Saturday Gardening Thread: Summer Travels Begin [KT]


Cactus grown by DeplorableJewells45

Well, the unusually cool weather in the San Joaquin Valley has ended, and we are now getting the scorching weather more typical of this time of year, plus some humidity. Not like in the East, but still, humidity. Uncomfortable. I am kind of hunkered down, taking care of plants, animals and people, with some extra-chaotic challenges. I appreciate the chance for virtual gardening visits with other members of The Horde. We have some great stuff in our garden mailbag, but I was only able to get to a little of it this week. Stay tuned for more from The Horde this summer.

Jewells is disappointed that the weather seems to have prevented some of the buds on her stand of cactus from opening this year. But I think it still looks pretty great. I confess that I like cactus blossoms best up close, though. I love the translucent petals. I am fond of the way the stamens look.

Anybody else out there grow cactus? Any tips for the rest of us? I used to have a neighbor who grew those climbing jungle cacti. They have somewhat different needs from desert cacti.

cacti edit.jpg

Home Improvement Corner

Most of our gardens come along with a home or apartment, and I thought this list of 5 essential hacks for summer from FEE would free up some time for gardening, and visiting gardens. Here's to drains that drain, hotter water, cleaner laundry and more satisfying showers and shaves. I'm not so sure about carrying lye in luggage. Otherwise, I like the list. Have you implemented any of these hacks?

Meanwhile intrepid internet traveler WeirdDave sent along this DIY project for growing your own shade. Looks inviting about now. Bet you could use sweet potato vines. Check the link for more photos.



Concerning our REAL mystery plant last week, DJ (Texas Lurker) has sent in a message:

False Gromwell (soft-haired marble seed) appears to be it. Thanks to all in the Gardening Thread.

The name Job's Tears also came up. Another name for this plant is "Wild Job's Tears". But there is also a "regular" Job's Tears naturalized in the Southeast:

There are two main varieties of the species, one wild and one cultivated. The wild variety, Coix lacryma-jobi var. lacryma-jobi, has hard-shelled pseudocarps--very hard, pearly white, oval structures used as beads for making rosaries, necklaces, and other objects. The cultivated variety Coix lacryma-jobi var. ma-yuen is harvested as a cereal crop, has a soft shell, and is used medicinally in parts of Asia.

It is apparently the next cult gluten-free grain. Maybe you could grow some. Adapted where grains like rice are not.


That link reminds me: Don't forget to turn in your recipes using garden produce for the AoSHQ Cookbook!

Traveling with The Horde

Gorden sent in a gorgeous video of the Minnesota Arboretum from the air. I can't figure out how to embed it, so you'll have to click on the link. Thanks, Gordon.

And we finally have a chance to visit the innovative Weasel Acres - Sno Pea Division. The ranch is coming along nicely.


We will be visiting other Gardens of The Horde (and Gardens Recommended by The Horde) this summer. I'm looking forward to it.

Meanwhile, is there anything interesting going on in your yard and garden?

If you would like to send information and/or photos for the Saturday Gardening Thread, the address is:

at g mail dot com

Include your nic unless you want to be a lurker.

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posted by Open Blogger at 12:20 PM

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