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It's been a while since we talked about the fall garden, so I thought an update was in order.
The saltbush has been in bloom for the last week or so. It attracts moths, bees, wasps and butterflies like crazy. It's wonderful to stand underneath and just hear all that low buzzing.
My friends Faye and Lynn had given me quite a few eggplants to transplant. They're all doing well and this one that was planted into a pot has really taken off. Ooooh, we might have homegrown eggplant for our Christmas lasagna!
Since learning that I can eat broccoli without any problem, it is consumed with relish whenever possible. There are a few crops popping up throughout our back bed.
The radishes have been slow growers, but with our temps now reflecting a more favorable range, they should come right along.
Several varieties of lettuce are being harvested a couple of times a week to supplement the bunch I buy from Faye and Lynn. A few new types have been tried, including Red Sails, New Red Fire and Amaize, a red Romaine variety.
The tomato plant is flowering, so that can only mean that juicy Celebrity tomatoes are on their way. We do occasionally get a frost here, but for the most part, fall is a great time to raise tomatoes in Central Florida.
The marigolds under the oak have come back like gangbusters. It's so nice to have that pop of color.
The rattlebox is in full bloom. With the windows open during the day, we can hear the seed pods popping open to self-seed in the back bed.
There are two pots of mums that are rotated from the front porch to the back bed. When one gets to looking like it needs more sun, it gets placed in the backyard to recover.
This butterfly vine blooms almost year-round, but does especially well in the cooler months.
Its leaves turn chartreuse and then brown as they age on the plant. See the butterfly shape? This Florida native needs absolutely no special care.
A few rudbeckia are still showing us some glorious color. These beauties have been blooming for months. We're enjoying the sparks of color before our weather turns. What's it look like where you are? HOP on!
She had posted a few weeks back about acquiring her certification. If you haven't checked out her garden posts, you really should. Her garden is amazing!
It was simply a matter of filling out an application, which can be found here.
Some of the requirements for these critters are:
*Planting native milkweed. This is the host plant, but also serves as nectar for the butterflies. The monarchs lay their eggs on the milkweed, and when the eggs hatch, the caterpillars begin eating their way through the plant.
Without this host plant, the monarch cannot survive. *Plant other nectar sources. Pentas, butterfly bush and zinnias provide great food sources for them. *Water sources. We keep several birdbaths in our garden. One way to ensure butterflies can get enough hydration is to place a few rocks in the birdbath, so the monarchs can perch on them to gather the water.
Keeping everything pesticide-free is vital to the health and well-being of these delicate creatures.
We feel good knowing that we are providing for these critters who add so much beauty and fascination to our world. What a fabulous school or church project for kids. I hope you'll consider joining us!
Last week, Big K took a day off so that we could visit
The Florida Flywheelers' November event.
It's an antique tractor club
that opens its doors to the public a few times a year.
We enjoy the flea market area.
They always have oodles of kitchen equipment
and assorted treasures.
These refrigerator dishes were so tempting,
but I left them for someone else to find.
There were some new-fangled things, like this rooster
fashioned from recycled tires.
This wall of tractor seats caught my eye.
What fun to have a collection of these!
Various engines are displayed.
It is the Flywheelers after all.
They sputter and pop and make quite a racket.
Lil' Guy has hearing sensitivity, but he shared with us
that this was the first year that we've been going
when these engines didn't really bother him.
A wonderful array of tractors can be found.
This was the John Deere area,
but tractors of every make and model can be found.
We are partial to John Deere,
as Big K hails from the region where they are manufactured.
Made in the USA!
In the village area, where folks have their barns filled with collections for visitors to enjoy, we found this fall garden planted with beans, peas, greens and flowers. Such a wonderful surprise at the end of our tour. This is hands-down one of favorite places to visit and we go back whenever an event is planned.
You can see past Flywheeler visits here, here and here. Now, let's HOP!