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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

A few of my favorite things - July

Okay, I'm just loving this Agapanthus x 'Monmid', Midnight Blue! Full sun, zones 6-11. Continuous blooms
                all summer into fall, foliage 2 ft. tall, flower stalks 3-4ft. Divide clumps every 2-3 years.
                                              Love the pattern on this hosta, forgot name - 'Stained glass'?

  Years ago, while antiquing in Vermont, I came across an old Singer sewing machine base. It was rusty and beautiful. It was a little more ornate than this one. It had no top, just the base. I bought a rectangle cut piece of granite left over from someones kitchen redo. It fit perfectly. I used it as a sideboard with our outdoor dining set. But with years of use and leaving it outside the base broke. I was sad.
A couple of years ago I found this one in Vermont.
Someone attached a thick slab of wood cut from a single tree and painted the base a gloss black.
I use it in the potting shed and the garden.
Not as nice as the first on, but still a "favorite thing".
I think I paid $10.00 for the first base with no top and $25.00 for this one. Can't beat that.
They make great tables!

 Okay, so this is a proud mom photo. I admit it. My middle daughter baked gourmet cupcakes for the Fourth of July .Baking is a hobby, she is an Irrigation Technician by trade.
They were amazing ! They tasted even better than they look. I really try not to eat wheat, but I so cheated.

Starting from the left the flavors are:
Almond Joy cup cake, a chocolate cake with coconut filling topped with an chocolate cream cheese frosting flavored with almond edged in toasted almonds.
Next is the Orange thyme cupcake. A vanillia cake infused with fresh orange juice, orange zest and fresh thyme, topped with a orange butter cream frosting, flavored with pure orange extract, garnished with sugared thyme sprig and orange zest curls.
Next is a Funny Bone cupcake, Hersheys chocolate cake, with a peanut butter filling, topped with dark chocolate ganache, garnished with a peanut butter filling rosette and a chocolate design.
Last is the Lavender white chocolate cupcake. A fresh lavender infused vanilla cake, with lavender flowers, topped with a white chocolate frosting garnished with edible gold spray and a sugared lavender sprig.
She made everything from scratch...YUMMM.
                       Have you ever seen a more beautiful cupcake? Okay, so I'm a proud mama!

                                     Love the way a see-through plant adds depth to a collage
                             Juncus effusis, Quartz Creek Soft Rush zones 4-11 full sun to part shade

                                                           Some of the "pinks" I'm loving...

                                       Alcea rosea 'Carter's Double Newport pink' - Hollyhock
                         The leaves have a "few" holes..maybe Aphids," But look Ma, no Rust!" (yet) lol

                                       Achillea Tutti Frutti  'Pomegranate' - Yarrow, zones 4-8 full sun 29" tall

                                 Echinacea Purpurea Magnus - Cone Flower - I know my spelling is awful!

           So, I was thinking of starting " A few of my favorite things" link up, is that what it's called?
    Where you could post whatever is making you happy in the garden - is there one of those posts already?


  1. Ok, love the flowers- they are amazing.
    But so are those cupcakes!
    Have you ever heard of cupcake wars- the TV show- she should enter!!!
    Did you taste any?
    They look so good.
    Did she come up with the recipes herself?
    I haven't seen a favorite things in the garden link up, but you could always link up tomorrow to what I love Wednesday on www.lollipopscards.com.

  2. A 'favorite things' meme sounds like a great idea. Just get a Mr. Linky widget and start inviting people to join in. All of your favorite things are pretty, but those cupcakes are amazing! Your daughter should open her own bakery!

  3. Hi Chattymommy,
    Baby Girl did come up with the recipes..she took classics and "tweaked" them. She says "No wars for her, Thank you". We tasted too much! So delicious!

    Hello HollyGarden,

    Thank you for your compliments!
    My daughter has thought of baking as a career (she makes great cookies) but she loves the Irrigation field!
    Now if I could just figure out how to "get a Mr. Linky wiget", I'll be in business!
    I think I need to take "Bloggers Kindergarden"

  4. Those cupcakes look amazing!! The pink hollyhock looks scrumpious too.

  5. Beautiful flowers and delicious cupcakes...how could this post be any better?

  6. Thanks Sweetbay, they were!
    I'm so glad they're out of the house!

  7. Hi Classic, Casual, Home,
    Welcome! and thank you for your compliments.

    Hi Mellissa,
    (Fastest cookie maker in the world lol)

    She did do a great job...Didn't she?

    xxxx oooo

  8. I can so see why you're a proud mama. Wonderful and beautiful both. We now have a gourmet cupcake store which has gluten free specialty cupcakes. For dairy free, I have to order ahead of time. I did it once. :))

    I love that double hollyhock. She looks like a cupcake too.~~Dee

  9. Wow, I wish someone around here made gluten free cupcakes..or maybe its good they don't...lol
    I once ordered almond flour online that was quite expensive but was able to bake great tasting gluten free cookies and cakes.
    I hope your day was cooler Dee,


  10. wow - so much to fall in love with as i scroll through your photo's! That double hollyhock is just gorgeous & i love love love agapanthus...but have a hard time with it here in my neck of the woods! So i am enjoying yours! Appreciate you sharing this garden post at Cottage Flora Thursday's! xoxo, tracie

  11. The coneflower is one of my faves. All of mine did not come back this spring.

  12. Oh, I love agapanthus. I had one last year, but they are just an annual in our zone 5. Darn, they're a bit pricey to enjoy for just a while. I kept thinking I'd find one on sale. Your flowers are all beautiful. Especially love the double Hollyhock. My cone flowers and hollyhocks are not blooming yet. Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Yes, would love you to do a link.

  13. Sorry, forgot to mention that those cupcakes are FABULOUS! Tell your daughter she done good!

  14. Your pics are gorgeous! Lovin the hollyhock. I see you're an MG too...so that means we're both Plant Nerds of the highest kind! lol


  15. I really like all your flowers AND the cupcakes look wonderful! I like the coleus mixed with hosta and the double hollyhock - I planted some double hollyhock seed - but they are only about an 1" high - no rain I guess or maybe they will grow some more next year. Again just beautiful photos.

  16. I am not sure what is more delisious your flowers or your daughters cupcakes.

    Loved all the eye candy

    Blessings Kelsie

  17. Hi Tracie,
    Thank you for your kind compliments and thank you for hosting such a fun party! - Cottage Flora Thursdays!

    Hi Olive,
    I know , it seemed like a funny year for what made it and what didn't - My Monarda didn't come back and its supposed to be invasive here on Long Island! lol
    Love your name by the way!

    Hi Jann,
    Thank you for your kind words! I was excited to find an Agapanthus hardy to my zone, hope it makes it, they were pricy! Thanks for the feedback on starting a Link-up!

    Hi Jeanni!

    So glad to meet a follow Master Gardener!
    Now, if we could just get our plants to realize it...Thanks for visiting!

    Hello Cottage Dome,
    So glad to meet you! Thank you for your kind words, hang in there with the Hollyhocks, once they get going, they'll take off!

    Thank you for the Blessings, Kelsie!
    And for your kindness, I am enjoying your blog!

    I appreciate all of you!

  18. Wow! I thought that the second picture of the Hosta was a painting! Gorgeous Flowers. I love your potting table to! A gardener I am not--just a wanna be gardener:) You should be very proud of your daughter. She made me very hungry just looking at the picture! Thank you for visiting my blog. I am now your newest follower!

  19. Beautiful post Karen! Liked the base from the sewing machine... I use one as part of my work area for my reproduction Tiffany lamps. Mine didn't come from Vermont however... although I did! Also... I'm not a farmer... just surrounded by them! This old cheese factory went out of business about 50 years ago! I'm actually a retired vocal music teacher... Larry

  20. Thanks Larry!
    I am having a good time trying to catch onto how everything works with this blogging thing!
    That is so cool that you are from Vermont! Many good things come from Vermont I see!
    Your workmanship on your lamps is glorious!
    So, You are an amazing gardener, unbelievable stained glass artist AND you sing?
    I don't think I can talk to you anymore Larry!
    Just Kidding, I look forward to your future posts,

    Warm regards,


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