Monthly Archives: May 2012

Paisley Plant of the Week: Mexican Sour Gherkins

Paisley Plant of the Week: Mexican Sour Gherkins

This week has been all about the cucumbers.

42 plants, five transplanted the rest seeds, were installed in their heavily composted beds this week. Yesterday was spent re-stringing the A-frame trellis from last year. This trellis is great for cost but time consuming for maintaining. I had to make the netting from scratch this year, as all of last years twine had rotted and would break with the slightest provocation.

It took me about 5 hours working by myself, there are a lot of knots, a lot of knots! Why don’t Girl Scouts learn knots like Boy Scouts do? I’ve had to get my son to come do his fancy knots about a thousand times, he never asks me about self-esteem, making new friends or cookie sales. It’s not fair.

Getting on…

Loads of tiny yellow flowers yield loads of adorable cucumbers.

Mexican Sour Gherkins! They pretty much rock. The plants are small, and really pretty. They very much remind me of English Ivy, but they have fruit. Loads and loads of tiny yellow flowers, followed by a gazillion bumpy, watermelon shaped green globes that are delightfully sweet, crunchy and have a slight lemony brightness. Read the rest of this entry

A Few Reminders

A Few Reminders

I hope you have a really great, paisley weekend!

Please take a moment to look at a few past posts that are in need of some comments and advice.

First off, I need help with some canning concerns. If you have some experience with canning and preserving, I really need your help. Please take a moment to look over the article on Whimsical Wednesday and let me know what you think.

Second, I’m still in need of some ideas for my crazy science experiment with radish tops. Read the article about Myrosinase and give me some feedback.

Feedback welcome always! Oh, and don’t forget to tell your friends about the site = )

I’m out to the garden now. Again, have a great weekend. I hope it’s sooo paisley!~KeriAnne

The Duality of Man

The Duality of Man

We were in the garden, in the radish bed to be exact, when I learned some valuable lessons.

Patrick was at the far end of the row, I was on the other, the plan was to meet in the middle. Meghan came out to see what we were doing. Talk quickly went to oohs and ahhs over the gorgeous shades of burgundy, rose and shell pink radishes that were being unearthed. One of us would say, “Oh, this would be pretty nail polish.” The other would add, “I want a lipstick this color.”

Our musings were interrupted by a little boy that flatly states, “I’m winning”.

Winning? Winning what?

“I have the biggest radishes in my bag.” He did, but how did it become a contest?

I thought it was a task to be performed in order to harvest the radishes. Meghan thought it was inspiration for a makeup palette and Patrick, well, he was winning.

If you’re scoring at home, the final tally was three shades of lipstick ordered, five bags of radishes harvested, Patrick had the bag with the largest radishes but the Paisley had three bags to his one (unfortunately for mom, it was decided that this bit was irrelevant and for this task, size did matter).

More conversation after we quit laughing about his enormous victory. Meghan and I are caught up in work schedules, meal plans and whether or not the van has petrol…

“Look, mom! It’s a gun! Rat-a-tat-tat-tat-tat!”

He shot every bad guy in our yard with that radish gun. I never let my big kids have play guns. My oldest son, Ryan, has said that it really didn’t matter, he just made them out of sticks, playdough, and if all else failed, his thumb and forefinger did the trick. Patrick said the radish gun was the best because after the bullet hit you, the radish juice would really sting. Amazing how a little boys mind works.

Some didn't make it in to the house!

It’s almost dark, the mosquitoes are starting to annoy me. I tell the kids to finish up and take my haul inside to start rinsing. Later that evening, I went out to make sure there was nothing left outside, I hate it when bags get left out. I see a small but noticeable section of about twelve plants that should have been grabbed.

“Patrick, why did you leave those radishes? I needed them all in”?

“Oh, we already had five bags. I left a few for the bunnies. They really like them and we already had enough.”

The duality of man. We are torn by our desire to acquire, possess, consume, coupled with defense mechanisms of violence and aggression learned or not. In the same mind resides the instinct to protect , encourage and nurture.

It’s ours to strike a balance.

Acquire-what we need.

Be good stewards-with what we are given.

Defend-our faith and family.

Protect, encourage and nurture, not just ourselves, our families, our friends, but all of God’s children.

“Love one another, for love is of God. He who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love, does not know God. For God is love. God is love.”

More preachy than paisley today. Sometimes that’s just the way it is. I do hope you have a Thoroughly Thoughtful Thursday! (With a side of Paisley!)~KeriAnne




Whimsical Wednesday

Whimsical Wednesday

I’m feeling the burn of planting 28 cucumber plants yesterday. Luckily, we have church tonight so gardening is reserved for watering and feeding only. I usually keep Wednesday as a “stay in” day so I’m fresh for church. I did go out and check everybody this morning. They’re all giddy since the good soaking rain we got yesterday evening.

It was kind of fun, I was on the last cucumber when it started sprinkling. I had just enough time to put my tools away, store the wheelbarrow and pop up on the porch before the skies let loose. I planted, God watered them in. = )

So, here’s what else is on my mind today (because I know you were wondering).

First off…canning and preserving.

Radishes are picked, pared, processed and pickled! Yay! So far I have 1 full quart and 4 half quarts of the French Breakfast.

Pickled French Breakfast, Bread and Butter style

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Totally Terrific Tuesday

Totally Terrific Tuesday

I woke up this morning and decided it was going to be a totally terrific Tuesday. I was kind of sore, kind of headachy, and kind of blah, but I didn’t want to let that hold me back, so I didn’t.

I got up, got dressed, drank coffee and went out to the garden. Yesterday I planted twelve new cucumbers, but I gave out before I could do all the finishing up that I usually do. This morning I went out and sprinkled ground eggshell on all of the new mounds that will be my lovely cucumber plants soon.

I checked the new melons, they’re happy in their new bed. The Vert Grimmpant and the Jelly Melons already have flowers on them and the White Wonder Watermelon, started from seed just four days ago, is already about two inches tall. We had a good soaking rain the night I planted the melons, followed by three days of warm sunshine, which, no doubt, is the cause for all that melon happiness. Well, that and my gorgeous black compost from last year that they’re now wallowing in. = )

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Sunny Weather

Sunny Weather

The sun is out and it’s a glorious day in East Texas! It’s cool, with a breeze, sunny and mild. It’s one of those days I’ll have to monitor my garden time carefully so I don’t end up in traction.

I had a great Mother’s Day! I got to have lunch with *2nd family, and then, in the afternoon, Meghan was off and we got to hangout together. There was a lot of laughing and a few great presents! I am completely blessed!

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Paisley Plant of the Week: Vert Grimppant (The Green Climber)

Paisley Plant of the Week: Vert Grimppant (The Green Climber)

I grow many different melons. I really love vine plants in general, I think. This has to be why I seem to gravitate to Morning Glories and cucumbers, squash and, of course, melons.

I didn’t really know this about myself until very recently. We were at coffee with my in-laws and I overheard my hubby say, “If it climbs or vines, she has it.” He was answering a question about whether I grew bush or pole beans, but it made me think about my plant selections in an entirely new way.

I do have a tendency to choose vines and climbers. I’ll have to think for a spell on why that might be, but as of now, it’s just a point to ponder.

Let’s talk melons!

Vert Grimmpant...Lovely!

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Stuff You Missed in Botany: Experiment With Organic Pest Control

Stuff You Missed in Botany: Experiment With Organic Pest Control

No, I’m not telling you what an experiment is as such. I’m telling you about a Botany experiment I’m going to be doing with my son, Jonathan.

Last week while searching for various and sundry things, I came across an interesting article about Myrosinase. This has sparked much curiosity, scientific probing,  and even a bit of the entrepreneur spirit around the Gunz household.

Myrosinase is an enzyme that is released when radish leaves are stressed. (It’s not only radish leaves, but most of the brassicas family, the largest quantity comes from rapeseed) The enzyme acts as a repellent to insects, and other foragers.

DNA of Myrosinase~it looks like pretty and paisley!

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Throwback Thursday: Sunflowers

Throwback Thursday: Sunflowers

Helianthus annuus

The Sunflower

Ah Sunflower

Ah Sunflower~William Blake(1757-1827) P. 1793

Ah! sunflower, weary of time,
Who countest the steps of the sun,
Seeking after that sweet golden clime
Where the traveller’s journey is done;

Where the youth pined away with desire,
And the pale virgin shrouded in snow,
Arise from their graves and aspire;
Where my sunflower wishes to go.

Giant globes of gardeny goodness. This is what you get with sunflowers.

Sunflowers rock!

That’s all, end of article. Not.

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