I used to be terrified of bees mainly because I’m allergic — which is certainly a plausible rationale for fear, but I have so many bees here at Casa de Enchanted Seashells–they love rosemary and lavender and other herbs, that I’ve decided to quell my anxiety and bee friendly.
Are you thinking about Pepé Le Pew? I’m thinking this is another beneficial creature that enjoys a stroll around the garden along with the coyotes and bunnies and possums and raccoons. I don’t include rats or ground squirrels in that group ‘cos I really really don’t like them!
Walked the beach last night and the sunset was spectacular. No Green Flash though, and no whales or dolphins either, but it was the first warm evening with a hint of the summer to come.
The beach was crowded with happy people emanating positive thoughts and cheery greetings because it appears that we are collectively anticipating the rise out of darkness.
I had a fun chat with an adorable high school boy who had come out of the water after the sun went down. I told him how I used to pick up my son at the beach and he would be the only one still out in the water after dark. If you listen closely, I bet you could hear faint echoes of my voice yelling at him, “GET OUT OF THE WATER NOWWWW!” I sent the young man on his way with the admonishment to stay safe ‘cos moms worry.
Another day, another sunset. Mother Nature is magnificent.
I don’t think there’s anything that enchants me more than a volunteer plant.
Where did you come from, my lovely friend?
Whether it was born from a seed scattered by the wind or bird or a garden angel, a volunteer plant seems to be healthier and grows more vigorously than others.
I didn’t plan for this California poppy, but here she is in all of her shiny, orange, exuberant glory!
In my fantasy-driven universe where animals and growing things speak, it’s like she selected this perfect location between a rose and lavender, and says, “Here I am, Princess Rosebud, aren’t I so very beautiful?”
Yes, it’s true. You are a very beautiful child of the universe and thank you for choosing me to care for you. I am grateful!
I took a look around and thought it’d be fun to share my other gardens at Casa de Enchanted Seashells.
The little side yard next to the driveway…See the gigantic ceanothus to the left of the flowers? I thought it had died and now it’s taking over that entire space.
This is one of my favorite places; a rose arbor with a hideaway pond/waterfall along with chairs and a table, perfect for morning coffee or afternoon tea.
This sweet smelling herb garden under the bedroom window is starting to bloom, too. Sage and flowering borage, also known as starflower:
We haven’t had any measurable April showers that would bring May flowers; such is the life of a SoCal garden. We’re halfway through the month with no rain in sight. We’ll need to enjoy these flowers until the summer heat and drought turns everything brown and drab.
One of my proudest skills is the unexpected ability to propagate plants. Currently I’m propagating lavender, rosemary, roses, and a variety of bushy daisies.
Another simple (and thrifty) joy of mine is to go to the section at the nursery where the sad unloved plants are piled up and sold .50 cents to a dollar. I call them my “rescues”. Sometimes all they need is to be transplanted, maybe cut back, offer a bit of care and tenderness, and they’ll thank me by bouncing back and thriving.
A couple months ago, I “rescued” six Autumn Sage one gallon plants. I transplanted them to serve as a border around the deck.
Leaves on Salvia greggii are narrow, leathery and aromatic. This low water need perennial boasts a long flower season. Blooms appear from spring to fall.
They responded to immediately and have now grown into gigantic, beautiful plants with lipstick red flowers. Butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds are happy, too! Even better, I pinched off some new growth and have successfully propagated them to another part of the garden and the little babies are also healthy and flourishing. Success!
This little one returns every spring to nest in the same old birdhouse.
For some strange reason, I woke up with a raging migraine that haunted me all day. I have no idea what triggered it. Thankfully, I rarely get them but this one was especially dreadful because I was nauseous for hours and hours. I slept most of the day which is so unlike me but my body insisted.
At one point when I forced myself to drink water so I wouldn’t get dehydrated, I looked out onto the deck and was greeted with a melodic, warbling song and couldn’t resist grabbing my camera for a couple of photos and then I went back to sleep.
On a side note, I semi-watched Perry Mason and Wagon Train and Mash and Happy Days, not my usual choices, only because I didn’t have the energy to look for the remote to change the station or turn off the TV. I was able to discern a lot of nuance from Happy Days that I had originally missed, in case anyone studies old TV shows.
I feel better today.
P.S. Migraines are debilitating; I lost a whole day; my heart goes out to anyone who suffers on a regular basis.
The word “purple” is not a pretty word. Say it out loud. It doesn’t even sound pleasant, right? I looked up the etymology of the word:
Old English (describing the clothing of an emperor), alteration of purpre, from Latin purpura ‘purple’, from Greek porphura, denoting mollusks that yielded a crimson dye, also cloth dyed with this. (From Oxford Languages)
I like these words better: -lavender -lilac -mauve -periwinkle -plum -violet -amaranthine
As much as I noticed all the sunny garden yellows a couple weeks ago, now THIS color palette caught my eye, and the bees are happy, too!
I’m talking about my magical ability to pick out great birthday gifts, haha, not anything else!
Do you remember that song from the 80s by the Waitresses? Once it gets into your head, it’s there FOREVER, trust me.
Here’s the question: what do you get a five-year-old that really and truly has EVERYTHING in the world?
Angel Boy 2.0 has a surfboard, a paddleboard, skateboard, bicycle, skiis, his own swing set and climbing frame, so many toys he could open a store, and his very own bouncy castle.
I’ve been noticing for quite a while that when we FaceTime, he takes photos and loves to look at pictures he calls “memories”.
For his special birthday present, I found a child’s camera by Rikum that takes pictures and video with fun filters and frames. Best of all, it’s rechargeable and not reliant on batteries.
I’m hoping to nurture a real interest in photography because I love it, too.
And it was a hit! He got so many MORE presents for his birthday, but I’m told the top three most favorite was a remote control intelligent robot, a remote control truck with huge foam wheels, and my camera.
I absolutely recommend this product if you’re looking for a cool gift that isn’t a video game and will encourage lots positive self esteem, interaction and creative skills, while learning to observe the world through the lens of a camera. (This is an unsolicited product review; I received no compensation of any kind.)