Friday, June 11, 2010

June, so far

Long time no see, huh? I've actually done a lot with the balcony since I updated the last time and I've even taken photos of it. I've just been really lazy with updates (or busy with other stuff etc)

First of all I've re-planted all the geraniums/pelargoner that had spent the winter duct taped to my kitchen window sill (remember the itty, bitty, kitty monster that moved in to my home last fall? Duct tape is now a vital part of my interior decorations. LOL) Most of them had survived the winter. Some needed to be cut down a bit since they were way too tall and gangly but in general I preferred to keep them as big as possible this year.

Look at some of my re-homed geraniums/pelargoner waiting to be placed….

…on the window sill.

More re-planted geraniums
(and an innocent cat tail, this isn't the itty bitty one)

Pay special attention the foliage color of the one in the pink pot

Two days in the bright sun made the foliage change color
(it's not dry or burnt or anything like that)

I've also gotten some new plants form my mom, like a "pure bred" strawberry named Sonata (that's supposed to taste much sweeter than the berries from my other plant use to do), some Sweet Peas/Luktärtor and a little pot with Chard/Mangold seedlings. The sweet peas ended up in the flower boxes with all the other odd plants I've got there but the chard babies were too small to re-plant yet (And I promise, no chard will end up in my flower boxes. LOL)

The Sonata Strawberry and baby Chard/Mangold to the left

My old strawberry plant

Wild strawberry/Smultron

My next project was to turn the plant box in to a vegetable patch. Since it doesn't have a real bottom I've decided to grow things in pots instead of filling it up with soil but I've tied up the lid and started to plant some seeds. So far I've planted some lettuce/sallad (Garden rocket/Ruccola, my absolute favorite) and radishes/rädisor. (I've also got some pea seedlings, the chard and the Sonata strawberry in the plant box).

I'm particularly proud of and curious about the radishes since they've got a history of their own. Last year I've planted ordinary store bought radish seeds but for some reason they didn't grow their usual bulb like roots, instead the plants focused on foliage, flowers and seeds. I saved the seeds last fall and this season I've sown them and now I'm really curious to see what will happen. Will I get thick red roots or fruits like klast year? (the fruits are eatable and quite yummy as well)

The corner with my plant box/vegetable patch

I've sown radishes in the round pot, lettuce in the
rectangular pot and peas in the cut off milk cartons.

And finally some photos of my Petunias and flower boxes

I looove the scent of Sweet Alison/Strandkrassing

The lavender petunia that didn't have any flowers earlier

A rose, not a petunia LOL

Very strange petunia!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Hap-pea birthday to the blog!!!

Today has been the blogs 1 year birthday! Yay! Congrats little blog! It's been a really fun adventure so far. Blogging about the balcony inspires me to make it even better and more beautiful and it also gives me an opportunity to actually use all those photos that I take. LOL I also look forward very much to look back on last summer and reading the old entries, month for month to compare with this year.

May 2009 (click here!)

This year I'm a little bit earlier with some things (I've planted thing a couple of days earlier this year and I also bought the petunias earlier than last year for instance) and I'm a bit late with other things, like sowing the peas.

It's been a trickier to sow things indoors this spring since the "itty bitty monster kitty" moved in her last fall and turned the life upside-down fore me, the older cats and my poor, poor plants (she didn't just turn the plants' lives upside-down, she loves to turn the actual plants upside-down as well. LOL)

Anyway, tonight I've sown some pre-sprouted peas directly in the flower boxes. The dirt might still a bit too cold for them so I'm pre-sprouting another batch (in wet paper) to sow later or indoors if needed.

Sprouted peas, waiting to fulfill this destiny

To summon this birthday entry up I'm looking forward to yet another summer with my beloved balcony and yet another summer with my blog. I this will be a really good year! (If I could wish for one thing though it would be a little bit more comments and interactions with the readers in the blog and maybe some other balcony blogs to follow myself.)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sooooo many colors!

I must admit it, the vivid mix of colors have made me a little bit nervous. Have I taken it too far? Will it look too messy? Pale pinks petunias combined with the pale blue trailing lobelias WOULD be more my style. It's not that I don't like the colors, of course I do, I've bought them myself, it's the amount of them that had me worried.

But after enjoying a cup of tea on the balcony today and finally taking in the entire look I've decided that I like things the way they are. It makes me happy! And besides, it's the just balcony, should I grow tired of all the colors I can just go back to more subtle pastels next summer.

This is one of the colors I've worried about the most. It's a little
bit too red for my taste (it looked more pinkish when I bought it)

This one I love though

And this one as well, obviously

This color is a lot darker IRL, more like the bud you can see to the left

And this is probably the most unique of the colors

This one is hard to take photos of, it's bluer and darker IRL. Classic Petunia purple

And this is a bit warmer, more coral IRL

Me likes! Nothing worrying about white. LOL

Ooops, badly over exposed It's darker IRL

This is a better photo of the same flower

The 10th Petunia (to the right in the box above) is a wonderful, pale lavender plant but it doesn't have any flowers right now.

Tea on the balcony

My view from the chair

It's a rare treat to be able to drink tea on the balcony in the middle of the day. When it's sunny it's usually WAY too hot to stay more than a few minutes once the sun has reached around the house (the balcony is facing west and gets loads of sun) And what's worse, since there's a pizza place downstairs the customers and the owners love to smoke below my balcony (you're not allowed to smoke inside restaurants and public places in Sweden) and because of my asthma that always forces me indoors. Arrrghhhhh!!!!!

Today was a lovely day though, the temperature was just right and the smokers left me alone for a long time. After a while the sun disappeared behind dark clouds though and shortly I've I'd went back in it started to hail

Big Planting Day

Yesterday was what I use to call "The Big Planting Day" when I planted the flower boxes.

I planted:
  • Runner Beans (Rosenbönor)
  • Morning Glory (Blomman för dagen)
  • Petunias (Petunior)
  • Trailing Lobelias (Hänglobelior)
  • Sweet Alison (Strandkrassing)
(The later not in the flower boxes though)

The "corner" flower box

The box to the right of the table

The one closest to my chair

The last Petunia and the lovely honey scented Sweet Alison (Strandkrassing)

Oh nooo, my pretty floor is dirty!!!! (Don't worry, I've cleaned it up by now. LOL
I just needed to wait for the dirt to dry first to avoid creating a worse mess)

The corner

Friday, May 28, 2010

Little old lady flowers

Look what I bought yesterday!!! Dirt! Now I can plant more flowers again.

I also bought some more plants - OF COURSE!!! LOL

Petunias and Sweet Alison (Strandkrassing)

Even more Petunias!!!

Petunias???!!! Again???!!! To quote what I wrote last year on this subject:

I guess turning 40 really WAS the end of my fun, imaginative young self. Now I've turned old and boring! I've gotten Petunias!!! LMAO

I've always thought that Petunias were for little old ladies and boring people with no imagination and now I'm one myself, a boring, little, old lady with no imagination but with four petunias instead. LOL

I mostly blame my upstairs neighbor because every summer he's got the most stunning hanging Petunia baskets (and it's even just the basic bluish purple but they're still stunning). I also kind of blame my former mother-in-law's fantastic petunias (on the other hand she WAS a boring, old lady with no imagination so that's maybe the origin if my prejudices against the poor little flowers. LOL) But I also blame the "plant breeders" that's over the year created petunias in the most stunning colors and the cutest sizes. It's just not FAIR to wear down people's Petunia resistance by making the newer Petunias absolutely irresistible! And finally I blame my garden center that happened to have those irresistible Petunias right at the time when I came to buy some lobelias to mix in with the vegetables in my flower boxes.

See, it's not MY fault at all!!!! *innocent* I mean I can't HELP that I've just bought 4 different Petunias and that I happen to LOVE them. It's everyone else's fault!!! LOL I'm not old and boring at all, I'm NOT! LOL

Since I'm a year older now I of course had to buy even MORE petunias this year (10 of them instead of four *blushes*) Well, what can I say, I loved the ones I had last year and they had some really nice colors at the garden center (Eeek! I even fell for one of those bluish purple ones this year. I'm sooo old! LOL) I wish they had more of the different pale pink ones I had last year though.

The one to the left is the same color as one I had last year

And I found this to be a really interesting color

Since I chose such a huge mix of petunia colors this year I decided to tie the colors together with just pale blue Trailing Lobelias (Hänglobelior) instead of using mixed colors. (They were my favorites last summer) I'm already MUCH more color crazy than I use to be and I feel that I need a bit of calmness as well in the color palette.

A curious visitor

Mommy's little sweetheart!!! (she's meowing here)

The "pink" tulip

The second tulip bud. I wonder if it will open?

My Forget-me-nots (Förgätmigejer)

The photo above is a sample of the "guerilla gardening" I told you about earlier. The photo si taken from my bedroom window (which is a little bit more difficult than my old camera can cope with) . Isn't it a lovely flowerbed? It's "owned" by my balcony neighbor (the lady on the other side of the wall) and she keeps increasing it bigger every year.