Monthly Archives: September 2010

Three for Thursday

Three for Thursday,
Cindy, From My Corner of Katy sponsors Three for Thursday every week, and the nice thing about this meme is that you can choose whatever three things you want.

Tuxcedo, Confetti, Red Velvet

3 cupcakes. Why do people love Red Velvet cup cakes and cakes? It is such a favorite at The Cup.

Three containers of coffee

3 coffee containers. btw, what is the point of decaf in the morning?  I am drinking coffee at Holiday Inn Express

Lovely aren't they?

I would tell you if I knew what they are. Do you know?

OK, just to wrap it up,

3 Cup cakes, coffee, flowers. Enjoy!

For a good time in Springfield MO click here.

My Patio

2 New Coleus

Red Head (Solenostemon hybrida)
Versa Crimson Gold Coleus ( Solenostemon scutellarioides)

Red Head coleus

I combined these two coleus in hanging baskets that had late afternoon shade. Generally these plants were left on their own. I cut them back only twice during the growing season.

Red Head is truest red color in the Ball coleus collection. I like these newer coleus that can take the heat and hold their henna color in both full sun and part shade.

The Versa Coleus series includes Crimson Gold. These coleus were neglected, not fertilized, and inconsistently watered in hanging baskets. The bicolor leaves held their color, were vigorous, and quickly branched into a full mounded hanging basket.

All coleus will be gone with the first freeze, but till then, these plants provide bright, bold color on the patio.

Bright color all season

I’ll be using more coleus in my gardens because, unlike flowers, you get bold, season-long color.

If I can get bright , fade proof red in my garden all summer, I am inclined to plant it again next year. Most folks look at a garden at a distance. They just see the red. And this Ball Horticultural trial plant is a long lasting, fade proof busrt of red in my garden from spring till frost. Look for it next spring.

Most of my trial plants went in containers like this.

Coleus gave my garden bright season-long color.

Disease free home garden roses

Grow coral-orange Showboat roses in zones 4-9

Good news on the commercial release of a sweet little rose that thinks it’s a big shot blooming spring through summer with another heavy color burst in fall.

These StoryBook roses are tiny but mighty bloomers. They are highly disease-resistant and low maintenance. One delightful note to home gardeners: StoryBook roses can be easily propagated since they can be grown from cuttings on their own roots.

I’ve have two StoryBook roses growing in the front of my house for three years. With the exception of an occasional watering during the drought, I’ve generally neglected them. They are disease free, and don’t need the intensive care that keep many folks away from roses.

My StoryBook roses do not get pricey rose food, have no spray schedule and are happy to have a shovel full of compost and a couple inches of mulch every year. Thanks to its compact habit, they require very little pruning.

Advertised as “highly resistant to powdery mildew and little affected by black spot”, they proved to be disease-free in my hot, humid zone 6 garden. Even in containers, these hardy roses have survived week-long 100 degree days and weeks of freezing weather.

I have two StoryBook Roses. One is a floriferous coral double rose named “Showboat,” and the other, a bold and bright white rose with a yellow center, named “Moby Dick”.

There are two more StoryBook Roses. “Little Women”, is a soft pink semi-double rose. And the newest is “Sundance Kid” starts as a coral bud and opend to a soft yellow with a faint coral blush. Mature blooms are a soft yellow and hold their color even in the hottest weather.

Just imagine how beautiful they would be if I lavished a little attention or fertilizer on them. But after three years, I really do need to shape and trim them up. Now, I am headed out to cleanup these long ignored little roses because we are expecting company. This spring, you can come by and see my roses. Or, call 1(800) 770-2777 to order Storybook Roses.™

Brought to the industry by the breeder of Patriot™ Lantanas, R.J. (Jack) Roberson, StoryBook™ Garden Roses will be “whats next” in easy care home gardens. These little gems are perfect as patio roses or hardy in containers.

Story Book™ Roses are the closest thing to a maintenance free rose I have ever grown.

For more information: contact Jo Roberson at or go to

Cute as a Baby Bell

Bright and crisp

These little peppers are crisp and sweet. I ate the first ripe pepper right in the garden. I’m growing a few  chilies and several different mild or bell peppers.  These mini bell pepper plants are compact and heavy producers. Baby bells are a good choice for growing in containers.

There are truly a rainbow of colors for bell peppers. Try something new, like Baby Bells, beautiful in the garden and tasty in recipes. The green peppers are not as sweet and sometimes more bitter than the red, yellow or orange peppers. Bell peppers are at their sweetest when allowed to ripen on the plant in full sun.

Red peppers also have twice the vitamin C content of green peppers. Bell peppers are an excellent source of vitamins C and A. One raw pepper provides more vitamin C than one cup of orange juice.

Red Baby Bells

The red and yellow baby bell peppers are beautiful together on an antipasto plate or in a big summer salad.  This pepper seed is easy to find in several catalogs.

I got my seed at Renee’s Garden. I like that both the red and yellow peppers came in one seed pack. After all, how many pepper plants does a home gardener need?

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