Monthly Archives: April 2011

Rain Relief

For a short time, a very short time this morning, there was sunshine. After having such a long rainy spell, I grabbed the camera and ran went out to document the fact.

yellow iris

after the rain, a brilliant yellow iris opens up, a little.

Having survived the constant rain, this pretty thing wasn’t going to miss a minute of bloom time.

The rain beat off the petals on the dogwoods, lilacs and the last of the daffodils.

Already, the rain is back. The only plants that still have flowers, are the ones in bud that refused to bloom until this damaging rain stopped.

The flood gates are closed. Many folk are sand bagging hoping to save thier home from the continuing rains. Huge, hundred year old trees have topled over onto many homes.


little lantana blooms


rainy Broccoli

The broccoli is tired of rain

Even the herbs and vegetables are just sitting in the soggy ground, not growing.

Still, it was nice to see the sun and remember what it looked like.

rain and chives

The chives are thinking of blooming regardless.

The Napeta (cat mint) is just waiting for a few hours of golden light to really produce those lavender flowers that the bees love so much. This is a favorite, long blooming, no fuss perennial. Makes a great mounding ground vover.

cat mint

nepta, ot cat mint

Now for a bit of a cat nap on this rainy afternoon. (I love to sleep when it is raining.) Isn’t this Iris a lovely color?


These dark purple buds be come Lavender blooms.

Rain, rain go away

Red Volunteer will quickly multiply into swaths of red flowers.

It’s been raining for days. Yesterday we had over 3 inches of rain. So far this month we have had 8.36 of rain and it is still raining. Forecasters say this front isn’t moving for at least 3 more days.

The city’s floodgates are closed. We are safe from the rising waters. There is not a flat surface in my kitchen that isn’t covered with plants.

I am inundated with plants. They need to go into the ground. Boxes of trial plants and packets of cool season seeds are arriving. Plants that are waiting for the soil and sun.


Before the rain, I planted a few daylilies, including red volunteer and dream soufflé™ from American Daylily & Perennials

The daylilies haven’t had time to develop roots and are just treading in waterlogged soil.

American Daylily & Perennials is also where I buy cannas and lantanas. They are waiting for drier days to be planted. I will share more about these floral beauties on a sunnier day.

Red volunteer is going to be 29″-33″ height with huge 7″ flowers.

Dream soufflé™ will grow 24″-30″ tall and has medium pink double blooms with reblooming 5″ flowers.

Dream souffle™ a delightful rebloomer.

Coffee in Springfield MO

The Cup window watching the baker decorate cupcakes. photo: PBH


It’s impossible to know how many coffee shops there are in Springfield. They pop up and disappear quickly. You’ve got to sell a lot of coffee to keep the doors open. Here are some of the established Businesses.









Hot Shots I Coffeehouse Roundup in Springfield Missouri

I. The Coffee Houses: The Coffee Ethic, Hebrews Coffee, The Mudhouse

Heros: WAKE UP. DO GOOD. REPEAT photo by PBH










Hot ShotsII Coffeehouse Roundup, Springfield MO

II. The Coffee Houses: The Dancing Mule, Big Momma’s Coffee & Espresso, Heros and, The Potter’s House.

Dancing Mule photo: PBH












Hot Shots III Coffeehouse Roundup, Springfield MO

III The Coffee Houses: Fog City, The Hub, The Buzz

Big Mamma's Plenty of room for conversations, or working on that American history exam. photo: PBH



A cappuccino is an Italian coffee drink prepared with espresso, hot milk, and steamed-milk froth. The name Cappuccino comes from the Capuchin friars for their brown garb and ring of brown hair, hence, the name Cappuccino.




Bleeding Hearts

I’m sharing this beautiful flower with you because I learned something new about this spring time treasure. It is Lamprocapnos spectabilis (formerly known as Dicentra spectabilis), an old-fashioned bleeding-heart. I was calling it by the old name. Who knew?

Lamprocapnos spectabilis

It is a rhizomatous perennial that prefers shade. I’ve never had a good place to grow them, but they are a springtime standout. My most recent sightings, in the springs gardens at Eureka Springs AR, in Branson at the Showboat Branson Belle and, Most recently, at the Vaile Mansion in Independence MO.

The Vaile Mansion has this David McCullough, quote from his book TRUMAN. On page 51, McCullough describes the Vaile:

Bleeding Heart thrives in the shade of Vaile Mansion

“The Vaile house on North Liberty, the showiest house in Independence, was a towering stone-trimmed, red brick Victorian wedding cake, with thirty-one rooms and Carrara marble fireplaces. The Vaile stable had mahogany paneled stalls. There was a greenhouse and four full time gardeners. If Harvey Vaile, who made his money in “pure water” and contract mail delivery, was not the richest man in town, he certainly lived as though he were.”

I think Bleeding Hearts look fussy and well suited to Victorian decor, as is the Vaile Mansion, the Branson Belle, and the whole of Eureka Springs.

If you have a shady spot, give it a try. They are not as delicate as you might think. If yours goes dormant and dissappears in the summer, plant hosta near by to fill the gap in your shade garden.

A rhizomatous perennial that prefers light shade

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day April 2011

Confederate Memorial State Historic

I’ve been traveling this month, enjoying other peoples flowers. The neighbors are enjoying mine.

forsythia at Arkansas Welcome Center



Visit  Carol at May Dreams Gardens to meet more flower lovers participating in Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day.


MO Botanical Gardens is just beginning to bloom with redbuds






thousands of tulips at MBG



So many color combos and tulip flower sizes at MBG








Beautiful primrose is in full bloom when some herbs are just surfacing in April.

primrose in the herb garden behind Shaw's home at Missouri Botanical Gardens.

Our travels took us to Independence where we saw these softly fragrant  pink lilacs.

Pink Lilacs with the same heavenly fragrance as the lavender lilacs.

Traditionally, GBBD is April 15. And, garden bloggers share what id blooming in their own gardens. Carol’s idea has grown so we can see the changing of the seasons, and the wave of flowers blooming through all zones both urban and suburban.

Since April is Poetry Month:

“And Spring arose on the garden fair,
Like the Spirit of Love felt everywhere;
And each flower and herb on Earth’s dark breast
rose from the dreams of its wintry rest.”
–  Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Sensitive Plant

More Thyme in the Garden

I have a lot more thyme than I used to. If you want more thyme, try these tips.

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris) is an aromatic herb valued as an ornamental and culinary herb. It has small lavender or pink flowers. Plant thyme in a rock garden or border for decoration; cultivate it for culinary seasoning. Thyme grows around 6 to 12 inches tall. It has a sprawling habit and can easily be increased from cuttings, crown division or seeds.

Strip the tiny leaves off the stem.

Strip tiny leaves from stem.
Photo by Patsy Bell Hobson

After its first year, cut thyme plants back each spring to renew them and keep them tidy. Plants prefer well-drained dry soil. Since it grows slowly, especially early in its life, weed-control is essential. It is a perennial in Zones 5 to 8.

Use fresh thyme with zucchini. Sauté any summer squash in a bit of butter and olive oil with onion, parsley, and thyme.

Read more:

Heirlooms in the Herb Garden

The word ‘heirloom’ harkens back to a nostalgic time—when life was sweeter, tomatoes were redder and folks actually used the word harken.

One of the best lemony herbs

Open-pollinated, or parent plants that are naturally pollinated, heirloom plants produce heirloom seed. The new generation of seeds will produce plants that are identical to its parent plants.

Many folks say that to be classified as an heirloom the cultivar has to be at least 50 or 100 years old. Others say before World War II ended. (The end of World War II marked the industrialization of agriculture and widespread hybrid cultivation.)

Heirloom plants have proven to be more heat tolerant, drought tolerant, insect resistant and have more vitamins and minerals. If they didn’t have any of these desirable characteristics, we wouldn’t grow them and soon they wouldn’t exist.

Mrs. Burns’ lemon basil (Ocimum basilicum citriodora ) is an heirloom (pre 1940) basil grown by Mrs. Burns in southwestern New Mexico. This lemon basil is taller and has larger leaves than other lemon basils. It also has an intense lemon flavor and fragrance.

Read more: Bell Hobson#ixzz1Ij5k9jME

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