Sunday, March 29, 2009

Growing My Victory Garden, New Vintage Art Design For The Home Vegetable Gardener

My newest gardening themed artwork is for home gardeners growing their own food at home.  During both World Wars, people were encouraged to grow their own food at home to stretch rations.  Today people are growing their own fruits and vegetables at home to make ends meet in a brutal economy. 

This unique design incorporates part of a WWI Victory Garden poster created by Macinel Wright Enright in 1919 for the National War Garden Commission.  A farmer carrying a hoe and wearing a straw hat with a flag walks down a country road.  His is followed  by dancing carrots, potatoes, tomatoes and beets carrying a US flag.  The text surrounding the artwork reads: Growing My Victory Garden in green leaf letters and an antique Americana font in red and blue. 

The artwork was restored, retouched and enhanced to bring out the colors of the flag and the vegetables.  The design comes on canvas tote bags for grocery shopping or organizing garden tools, t-shirts for gardening and even a lawn sign so you can show off to your neighbors.  

My new Victory Garden Design can be found in my CafePress store in the Green Sayings and Gardening Art Section of my online store.

Happy gardening from theGardenPages!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Pink Roses, Lavender And Yellow Acacia Flowers For Friday Floral

I am luck, luck, lucky enough to have a few things blooming in my garden right now, so I'm sharing the floral joy to brighten up your Friday.  And two of these flowers are from drought tolerant plants, so take heart my fellow desert dwellers.

This is a pretty pink tea rose that grows tall and has wonderful bubble gum pink roses.  When the flowers fully open, they turn into giant cabbage roses that belong in a French Impressionist painting.  

Water is such a concern here in the southwest, I have been restricting my new plantings to low water varieties (except veggies) and cutting back any water I do use in the garden.  But this rose must be at least 20 years old, so it gets grandfathered in.  It has been living on rainfall over the winter (which isn't much).  When the weather heats up, I usually water  this rose about once a month-ish.  I need to water it extra when we get into the 100's, but overall this rose is a trooper.  Now, I doubt you could get away with such a water-stingy plan with a newly planted rose, so keep an eye out if you try this with your roses at home.  

When I do water my roses, I completely drench the soil.  The "dirt" here is brick-hard clay, so the water pools around the base of the plant before sinking in.  Yes, the rose is sitting in a pond for a few hours, but not very often and my climate is so dry anyway I'm not worried about it catching a fungus disease.

The lavender is growing wild and blooming after the few little rain showers last month.  My lavender is native to the Mediterranean region, so it fits into my dry southern California climate just fine. It really is a tough cookie out there.  I have one near the house that gets a little extra water from me, and one in the far end of the yard which never gets water from me.  I think the one getting no extra water is a little more compact, and seems to have more flowers at the moment. Aside from a little trimming now and then, it really is care-free.

The pretty yellow puff balls are from the acacia tree.  This is the time of year when the branches are full of odd little twigs with buds at the ends.  It's only a matter of time until they open and hide the tree with a yellow blanket.  I planted this acacia tree about three years ago.  It is now living on rainfall alone and does quite nicely, thank you.  It makes a nice small tree for the back 40 and screens the back neighbors too.

So, we have two genuine drought-tolerant flowers and one from a long-suffering rose (which is worth every drop I give it).  You too can plant a drought-tolerant flower garden.  And March is a perfect time for planting your back yard paradise.  Good luck and happy gardening.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Future Wisteria Flowers for Friday Floral

The wisteria in my garden is just getting ready to bloom.  

There is one little petal open in this wisteria photo, but I think the real star of the show are the interesting cloud formations floating around today.

Anywho, the wisteria buds are good because this is about the time I should be chopping it down.  

IF I was going to take it out.  

There is a giant mound of leaves, huge seed pod parts and branches covering the patio (yes, I'm a lazy slob).  

But when the pods are popping open and sending out seed shrapnel, it is just not safe to be out there.  

Every year I think about just taking it out. 

But then it flowers and I remember why I love this plant.  I know soon the patio will be dripping with delicate purple wisteria flowers and the air will be full of their perfume.  Also, it seems perfectly happy with my laid-back attitude about watering (er, not watering).  

I suppose the buds are there to remind me the flowers are just around the corner. Just be patient.  And so, my dysfunctional relationship with my wisteria continues.  

I'll post the flowers when they open.


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