Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Subtropical winter colours...

Rose and blue; playing games... good morning;

Red  from the brilliant berries of Ardisia.

Coral ardisia (Ardisia crenata), a native of Japan and northern India, is a member of the Myrsinaceae family. Plants grow anywhere from 2 to 6 feet tall, usually in multi-stemmed clumps, and are hardy in Zones 8-10. Plants bear large (to 8.3 inches), glossy, evergreen leaves that are attractively serrated. In spring inconspicuous white to pinkish flowers bloom in axillary clusters that are largely hidden by the foliage. Showy berries follow the flowers, starting out green and gradually turning bright red. The berries hang on throughout the winter or until they are eaten by birds or small mammals.
Ardisia  can be invasive, as it seeds easily.
It might be a declared weed in Australia.

Pink and skyblue flowers of Bromeliad Aechmea Apocalyptica.

People don’t notice whether its winter or summer when they are happy.
 Anton Chekhov

faded....time for mending

Orange for mandarins; the trees are full;

Wonder and mystery are obliged to knowledge. ©Titania

Blush Pink, Hibiscus; winter cold colours the Hawaiian white elephant ear a blush pink.

Red and Blue Nidularium, Bromeliad

Sprigged Red and white, Cherie returns to life in winter;

You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star.
Friedrich Nietzsche

Rose, Petunia, many pots are planted  with annuals for winter cheer;

Light, seeking light, doth light of light beguile
Love's Labor's Lost Act 1. scene 1, William Shakespeare

Red and Purple flowers of a Bromeliad, Neoregelia

Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.
Rachel Carson

Looking up to an ever changing sky...

Red  Scots bonnets, these make a tasty chili jam. The first I tried were so hot I did not want to use them.
Now I find them very agreeable for chili Jam. I do not use them fresh!!
They grow well on small bushes and are very prolific. 
For my chili jam I use the whole chilis just cut in two. I cook them in vinegar and sugar until soft, blend them and cook again in enough vinegar and sugar and  a little  salt to give an agreeable taste of hot and sweet , until syrupy. Fill in glasses and keep in the fridge. I sometimes mix  chili  jam and organic tomato sauce, like ketchup to use with certain dishes.

The Scotch bonnet (Capsicum chinense) is a variety of chile, similar to, and of the same species as the habanero. The shape is slightly different from the habanero and the Habanero when ripe is orange while the Scotch bonnet when ripe is red. The Scotch Bonnet grows mainly in the Caribbean islands while the habanero grows mainly in Latin and North America. They are both quite hot (wear gloves when processing them) but have distinct and different flavors. Once you get over the initial blistering heat, the intense citrus-like flavor will win you over. Words such as hellish, blistering, and incendiary are used to describe the heat.  
The Scotch bonnet has a shape that is similar to that of an old-fashioned Scottish bonnet. Most Scotch bonnets have a heat rating of 150,000–325,000 Scoville Units. They are supposedly not as hot as a habanero pepper but when you try a Scotch bonnet, you will feel the same type of fire as eating a habanero pepper. Scotch bonnets are used in many different sauces worldwide. They are also known to cause dizziness, numbness of hands and cheeks as well as severe heartburn, if eaten raw. After preparing chilis it is very important to avoid contact with the eyes or any sensitive skin - even washing the hands may not be enough to remove the capsaicin that gives it its hot taste.

Mauve, perennial Salvia; now available in punnets in many different, even varigated colours, easy to grow from cuttings for borders as they grow about 30 - 40 cm high.

Dark Pink, Bromeliad Aechmea recurvata var benrathii - a stunning mini bromeliad with a  beautiful colour change.

The road from earth to the stars is not easy.

  Tree Art;

Blue and Silver,

Winter sunlight provides a mellow, watercolour look; challenging  above all a brilliant sky blue hugging the land…©Titania

Believe it or not:

A garden speaks the language of all poeple,  no matter to faith, nationality or age, a garden holds all the answers to life.

©Titania   Poetic Takeaway's; a trivial world of words.


Thursday, 14 June 2012

Winter blues;

Sunrise in the valley;  7.June 2012

Winter, June, Camellia japonica, silky pink Can Can shows off its delicate flowers.

To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves.
Mahatma Gandhi

The time to harvest Mandarins and Oranges;

In winter the sun is very welcome in the kitchen nook;

Sun and shade are still playing with the huge Heliconia leaves...

We have a Little Garden

WE have a little garden,
A garden of our own, 
And every day we water there 
The seeds that we have sown.

WE love our little garden,
And tend it with such care, 
You will not find a faced leaf
Or blighted blossom there. 
Beatrix Potter

Cotoneaster's  fresh red berries are ready for the birds..

Winter is the time to look forward to harvest Rollinia or Brazilian custard apples;

...a ripe one, ready to eat...

...the white flesh is very delicious, the texture and taste similar to the Soursop, perhaps not as tangy.

We have now plenty of Navel Oranges. Every winter I make some candid Orange peel.

Easy, 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, a few Oranges, cook slowly until the rind is soft and no syrup left.
Dry the peel on a rack and then coat with sugar; finished.

"And this our life, exempt from public haunt
Find tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
Sermons in stones and good in everything."
William Shakespeare, As You Like It

...they flower on and on and on...

The richness I achieve comes from Nature, the source of my inspiration.
Claude Monet

The variegated leaves of the shell ginger;

Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.
Frank Lloyd Wright

The wonderful  curtain of  the weeping Casuarina;

How could one go past without admiring the beautiful trunks of the gum trees...

Man has been endowed with reason, with the power to create, so that he can add to what he's been given. But up to now he hasn't been a creator, only a destroyer. Forests keep disappearing, rivers dry up, wild life's become extinct, the climate's ruined and the land grows poorer and uglier every day.
Anton Chekhov

Want to know your bugs in the garden, this is the book...

Believe it or not:
Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.
Immanuel Kant

Saturday, 2 June 2012

My garden in May - autumn;

As long as you live, keep learning how to live.  Seneca

Bougainvillea Pedro

I bought this one as a Bambino, but it seem to have outgrown its bambino shoes and arches up into a tree.

Generally the days are fine.

A seed hidden in an apple is an orchard invisible.

In the herb garden Thyme grows;

A broader leaved Thyme has still room to grow!

Thyme is one of the most popular culinary herbs worldwide, yet few people realize that Thymus, the botanic genus to which thyme belongs, contains 350 species, all of which are to a greater or lesser extent aromatic (though not all are useful in the kitchen).
Generally speaking, the thymes are wiry-stemmed subshrubs with small, narrowly to broadly oval leaves. Depending upon the species and cultivar, thyme leaves can be shiny, fuzzy, bright green, deep green, grey green, blue green, yellowish, silver, or variegated; furthermore, the leaves of the hardiest species can darken or redden in cold weather.
Thyme flowers, small, two-lipped, and aromatic, can come in pink, lavender, white, or crimson.

The thymes are classified by botanists as members of the Deadnettle Family (Lamiaceae or Labiatae) along with the mints, lavenders, rosemary, sage, oregano, and so many other useful herbs. Native to Southern Europe, North Africa, the Near East and the Mediterranean, many thymes are mainstays in the kitchen.!” Thymes  leaves provide us with powerful essential oils, the germicidal and antiseptic qualities of which are still valued today.

Coriander grows well in the cooler season; I let it flower and seed itself.

This variegated Bougainvillea I have planted into a huge terracotta pot, it grows in the herb garden, growing against the garage which forms a sheltering wall for the herbs.

Look at the trees, the birds, the clouds and at night go out and look at the stars!   Titania

A small fire cleans the tangled underground, ash will help ferns and other small native scrub to regrow.
In one corner old wood is accumulated as shelter for lizards, bandicoots and other small animals. At times Bush turkeys are around and collect mulch to make a mound to lay their eggs.

The beautiful Rosebud-Salvia flowers through winter;

Mint, this is Asian mint, which I like best. It grows best through the cooler season into late spring.

A handful mintleaves and  one teaspoon of organic sugar makes a fine addition to...

fresh Pineapple.

 Romeo and Juliet: Act 4, Scene 4
They call for dates and quinces in the pastry.

Sage, too is a herb which does best in the cool season.
I like to make Sage fritters as part of entrées, they usually disappear as quickly as they are made.

The vegetable garden provides sweet Kohlrabi, don't boil them to death; gently cook them  in a little butter and finely diced onion, add parsley, herbsalt, they are ready when they are nearly done, not mushy and not to hard either; delicious!

Beautiful sugar peas, eat  pod and all.There are still some of the Pitaya fruit ripening, these are most palatable and delicious when home grown, as they have time to ripen properly and are not harvested unripe.

A warm pink bougainvillea reaching into the blue;

Believe it or not:    When go into the garden with spade, and dig bed, feel such an exhilaration and health that discover that have been defrauding myself all this time in letting others do for me what should have done with my own hands.


Titania's Pellucidity; PoeticTakeaway's; a trivial world of words;