Greetings from Jewel and Me

male Costa's hummingbird and Lavandula multifida

As Thanksgiving Day draws to a close here in the desert, I want to say an extra word of thanks to all of you who read this blog.  


It has been difficult lately to find the time to follow even my very favorite blogs.  Or to keep up with comments on this one.   And my posts have dropped to one or two per week.


But for all that, I am tremendously grateful for all the encouragement and support I have gotten here in the blogosphere.  A good deal of inspiration, wisdom, and invaluable advice have arrived via my laptop screen.  My garden is certainly the better for it!  So am I.


So I wanted to say 'thank you' for once.


Also I wanted to share a few photos of Jewel, our resident Costa's Hummingbird.  This winter he is proving less timid than he used to be and much more tolerant of the camera.  Does he know how magnificent he looks darting into the orange-scarlet flowers of Hamelia patens?

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In a Vase: Crimson and Purple

Yesterday morning I went out and discovered a near-perfect bloom on Mister Lincoln.  This was a milestone, as flowers on my hybrid teas have been opening much too fast for use in bouquets.  There have been flowers on Mister Lincoln, and many more on Sterling Silver, but I haven't been able to catch them in time even for photography, let alone for cutting.  With cooler weather (nights especially), blossoms are opening more slowly, luxuriously.


I decided to build a bouquet around that bloom of Mister Lincoln.  Red flowers are plentiful in the garden, and Lavandula multifida is blooming in a rich purple that seemed just right in combination as well.

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Garden Bloom in November

Sunlight, ornamental grasses and miniature roses
Sunlight, ornamental grasses, and miniature roses

I'm beginning November's Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day Post with a good deal of trepidation.  Our internet connections have been brutally slow lately, and most of my blogging time is spent simply waiting while uploading photos.  I'm posting these at much lower resolution than I like, but maybe it will help.


Because, you see, I want to upload lots of pictures this month!  November has been beautiful and is particularly so now.  No rain to date, but temperatures have fallen gently into the eighties (my favorite comfort zone for desert conditions) and look set for the seventies soon.  


The garden is clearly of the same opinion.  It is in full bloom for the season and even sporting a few out of season flowers.

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The East Border: Tiptoeing Toward Winter

the East Border

The East Border is showing signs of the changing season now, after its own fashion.  Euphorbia tirucalli "Sticks on Fire" can be seen coloring up for winter.  I don't understand the mechanics of it, but unlike so many colorful succulents, its bright orange and yellow must not be due to heat stress.  It goes green during summer, and it is at its brightest for me in the cooler months.


Also very visible in the above photo is a yet unplanted Tagetes, a hybrid between T. lucida and T. lemmonii.  I intend to plant it just back from where it is in the photo.  (Note: You know you have become a bit disorganized when you return from the garden center realizing you've just bought two plants slated to fill the same empty spot in the border!)

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A Bunch of Herbs

Lavender and ornamental grasses, dried arrangement

Well, Cathy is celebrating the fourth anniversary of In a Vase on Monday, and she has challenged us to look outside the vase for today's post.  Rather than look for an alternative dish, I decided to go more minimalist and use some of the ample material I have on hand for drying.

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