Friday, October 25, 2013

End of Season Delights

The Toad Lily is blooming up a storm on the north side of the house (front) in deep shade! I will be planting many more of these delicate but hearty delights. The arrangement is on my kitchen windowsill above to show it off but it prefers shade, not direct sun.
A closer view of the blooms with the arrangement on my counter. The blossoms are just slightly larger than a thumbnail and bloom along the entire stem which in the garden setting is 10-12". I hope you give the Toad Lily a try.

The last blooms before frost. Can you believe how beautiful the roses are still? I wish you could smell them. David Austin roses have the most lovely fragrance and these are my favorites. They were just tight buds when the frost was predicted and this picture is two days later.

Everything has been harvested from the garden and preserved. I still have to put compost and mulch on the vegetable beds and I have to wrap and mulch the saplings and young trees. Maybe water trees if we don't get more moisture regularly during this Autumn.

And finally, the biggest delight of all, our female guinea had keets, six total, five survived.

She laid her eggs in the pasture among tall weeds. While Mark was mowing, he noticed her nest so gave her wide berth. Buddy however found the nest and would occasionally bring an egg to the front lawn. As you may recall, we retrieved one egg before he ate it and the keet is now in the Dot House with the chickens thinking she is a chicken!
But six managed to hatch and they were discovered by Mark the other day as the guinea momma was bringing them to the Guinea Shack. She stepped right in and Mark had to help the baby keets over the threshold since they were so tiny. The five survivors are growing like crazy and seem sturdy.  As I've said before, female guineas are not known to be the most diligent mothers so we are delighted with five additions to our guinea population.

The pictures above show that several adults stay on to watch over the keets and as I was trying to take pictures, they continuously moved to keep the keets hidden. I took alot of pictures to get these few.
We now have five adults and five keets. The guineas are wild in that they find their own food which is primarily the seeds, grasses, bugs, frogs and snakes around the house in the non-winter seasons. They have reduced our bug count drastically! We feed them grain during the winter. They come into their Guinea Shack each night to roost which is safer and warmer than in trees where they can freeze to death. However, since they roam free, every once in awhile during the winter we will lose a guinea to the wild hungry critters that risk coming closer to the ranch and find the guineas have strayed away from the buildings making it easier to hunt them.

One of the best food delights of autumn is Kolaches, the sweetbread fruit pastry that we of Czech heritage adored as children and still do today. I always think of my Mom and Grandma Hattie when I bake Kolaches because I am using their recipe. Sorry to do this but here is a picture of the treats with homemade 'traditional' poppy seed and prune fillings with my modern twist---addictive. I also use apricot, cherry, blueberry fillings at times. I'm not so crazy for the cream cheese or farmers cheese fillings which are also traditional.

I hope you are enjoying your Autumn with whatever delights it brings for you,Delores

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Mmmmm, fragrant roses and poppyseed kolaches! Two of my favorite things!

The roses may not bloom in the winter, but kolaches can be made ANYTIME!