Monday, January 20, 2014

Winter on The Hill

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. 
Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
-Martin Luther King, Jr.
May his legacy live on.


Farm School is taking the week off, 
so we thought we'd share some of the unique flora on The Hill.

It was a cold Sunday morning.
Temperatures registered at about 47 degrees when we started our tour.

We did a quick check on the garden.
It is fully loaded right now.
This area hosts broccoli, brussels sprouts, collards, eggplant, leeks, lettuce,
radishes, snap peas, spinach and a variety of herbs.

The second garden area is filled with pots containing beets, two types of kale,
papaya, Roma tomatoes, scallions, Swiss chard and newly transplanted Celebrity tomatoes.

 We picked a few peas for my weekly order.

This is the first time I was able to harvest my own lettuce.

 Faye showed me just how to do it with the utmost care.

Now, on to the property tour.

 The pineapples are covered with metal trash cans that rest on this rebar during cold spells.

Looks like the birds have gotten to this loquat.


The powderpuff offers a bold splash of color to the winter garden.

 The seedpods are absolutely stunning.

These camelias are another beauty that grace the grounds.

 You can learn more about azaleas here.


This particular hibiscus is called "Florida Sunset".

Here's another type of hibiscus, not sure of the name.

Something is tunneling underneath the ground and leaving these mounds on the property.
Whatever they are, thankfully, they don't disturb the garden.

Here's what's known as the "sausage" tree.
The long vines conjure up visions of Tarzan.

This is what hangs down from the vines.
That's one big sausage!
 (Nope, they don't eat it.)

This night-blooming Ceres displays white blossoms
resembling a water lily.
It blooms from 10 pm until dawn.

 Isn't it amazing how something so fierce-looking
can harbor such a delicate flower?

Faye and Lynn have so many lovely specimens.
The Hill is a treasure trove of winter life in Central Florida.
I'm thankful that we took the time to discover just how extraordinary it is.

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  1. So beautiful. Your photos remind me a lot of when we lived in Hawaii - such unique trees and plants. How very interesting that the Ceres blooms from 10 until dawn. I'm sure there's a reason??? Oh the peas - how I'm now craving fresh peas!! :-)

    1. There is so much to discover on their property. I hope you have a bounty of peas this spring!

  2. Daisy, I'm almost envious of your winter garden. Here in Nebraska the land is a dreary brown and will remain that way until the spring rains come and the weather warms up. Another couple weeks will be the beginning of the garden season with seed starting inside under the grow lights. It's time right now to check the viability of last year's seed and make a decision whether to order fresh or not.

    Pineapples and such we can only dream about and buy in the store. It's just too cold in the winter for growing those kinds of things here.

    Is your garden all in containers because of bad soil or because of the lack of open in the ground soil?

    Have a great Farm School day.

    1. Welcome, David! Just think, in only a matter of weeks, you'll be enjoying all the seed starting and germinating magic!

      This garden (who belongs to friends), is in containers to prevent problems with nematodes as well as make it easier for planting as my friends get older. Lynn really created an amazing system and he is very successful!
      Thanks for stopping in!

  3. I've never seen a sausage tree...very interesting. Wonder if the sausages are poisonous? You said they don't eat it...but I wonder why?
    Must be lovely to grow food in the winter... I'm thinking I can get my broccoli and brussels sprouts and cabbages in soon.
    Loved seeing these Hibiscus and Azaleas...all beautiful.

    1. The tree is indigenous to Africa, and I believe there are certain animals there who eat it, but it's not edible for humans as far as I know.
      It is wonderful having so many food choices in the winter, but in summer, when most folks are harvesting oodles of food, we lie nearly dormant with only okra and sweet potatoes! It's just too dang hot!

  4. I'm loving that pineapple! I've always wanted to taste a freshly picked pineapple. yum. All the flowers are so pretty and I like the bright colors. Great photos!

    1. Tammy, if you ever decide to put in a greenhouse, you might be able to grow one in a pot! There really is no comparing it to anything you can buy.

  5. Gorgeous...your photos make me LONG for spring!! We sit under over 100" of snow right now in NE Minnesota and our growing season is months away. Hoping to turn my back porch into a bit of a greenhouse this year :)

    Thanks for sharing all of your gorgeous photos; such DELICIOUS looking plants. Amazing job!!



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