A personal record of what's going on in my Northern Michigan zone 4 gardens. I use raised beds and grow organically. Nothing fancy--just trying to garden with nature in mind.

Friday, August 31, 2012

End of the Month Roundup-August

August has been a very fine month-a bit dry, but with nighttime temps cool enough to produce heavy dews, nothing suffered .  We had several weeks in the 70's, lots of nights in the 40's.
We had 1.9" rain for the month. 
We had 24 days of sun.  There were 4 days in the 90's, and 2 nights that dipped into the 30's. Can you say "roller coaster"?  The forecast today is upper 80's and sun--a warm ending to an otherwise pretty cool month..

 
There's flowers galore left, but not much else still growing.


Melons under their plastic tent,basking in the extra warmth--the nights are pretty cold now.
 
Most beds in the vegetable garden are empty now.  I do have melons , tomatoes, and the fall crop of broccoli growing. Most things have been harvested and "put up" for the winter.  I top dressed the beds with Donkey Doo as the harvests were completed. I'll put grass clippings and chopped up leaves on after we get back this fall....weather permitting.

 
Pretty much the only thing left is flowers.
 



My very first time growing Calendula---it was in with the 99 cent garden seeds--and I like them a lot!.  Speaking of the 99 cent garden--it was the most productive of all my beds.  The first green peppers, the first beans, good carrot germination.  A big success. The neighbors that got that bounty are happy!  And I learned a good lesson about hybrids versus the good old standbys....sometimes new and improved---isn't!

Another nice surprise--the Zebrina , from seed given to me by my good friend Deb Arnold a couple of years ago, magically appeared scattered around my vegetable garden this summer. It must have lain dormant all of last year. Amazing.
 
 
I'll be doing the FINAL post of the year next week--all the harvest totals, etc.  We're leaving after that and by the time we get home it will be time for some indoor hibernation.
 
Now, before you scroll any further----MAMA PEA---there are CRITTER pictures and since I know how you feel about bugs, and such---I wanted to warn you so you can skip the rest of the post!!
 
 
 



First up--a Walking Stick--which I haven't seen since moving to Michigan.....maybe because there are so many trees I don't "notice" them?
 

And hubby found this Skink climbing around the barn.  I had one last year that I found while digging around in a tub of potting soil......with my bare hands. Needless to say, the ENTIRE neighborhood heard me scream.  I'm not afraid of them, but when something crawls out of the dark unexpectadly-----eeeeeeeeeesh!
Hope you have a wonderful week!

54 comments:

  1. Just beautiful, Sue. With my current fascination with flowers, your garden will be an inspiration for me. Here's looking at next year!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definately! Next year will be perfect for all of us.
      Yup.
      Promise!!

      Delete
  2. I love walking sticks,my first bug collection in high school biology had one in it ,thanks to my brothers for spotting it for me up north at the cabin.Fabulous flowers as always

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Judy-thanks. I think those walking sticks are pretty neat too. But why are GUYS the ones that always spot them?
      :)

      Delete
  3. LOVE, love, love your garden! I wish ours looked that pretty...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Anke!
      I wish I could knit like you do!

      Delete
  4. Oh, Sue, your gardens are just so darned pretty.....they make my old heart go pitter-patter! Your floral scenes usually end up in my wallpaper folder, you have your very own "Sue's Pics", and on my desktop to be viewed with much, much pleasure.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You sweet dear thing. And you know darn well I'm coveting YOUR garden. You carrot growing fiend!
      :D

      Delete
  5. What a beautiful garden you grow! I have never seen a Walking Stick here - such an interesting insect. We have several blue tail skinks this year - they look like snakes at first and are very reclusive. Yes, fall is on the way - like you, I am looking forward to hibernation!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 2Tramps-I bet your fall will be here pretty quick! I'm most looking forward to all the cooking. And reading.....

      Delete
  6. OH.MY.STARS. Where do I start? I absolutely love your morning glories, allysum, cleome and sunflowers! How amazing does your garden look?!!! WOW! I wanna come visit!
    Love the critters too!

    I always look forward to your posts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Daisy-wow-thank you!!!
      And I appreciate your beautiful blooms....and for WAY longer than the 3 months I have!

      Delete
  7. Hello Sue, I'm finally making an appearance here now that my computer is a 'bit' faster, lol.

    Love the garden, I wish mine looked as good. Those morning glories are just gorgeous. Look at how tidy and perfect your vegetable beds and garden are. Amazing! And every time I see your stone house I covet it. Someday (as in this century) I would love to re-side our house in stone. After Aaargh, that is.

    Your grandson is adorable, I bet you'll pass on the gardening gene to him. Digging that pond out looked like a whole lot of work, ugh. I'm thinking about burying our pond, too. Silly scummy thing. Rocks don't need maintenance, lol.

    Gosh, I haven't seen a walking stick in a few years and have never seen a skink here in Wisconsin. Ew, they're cute, but when I read about your close encounter with him/her, I cringed! EWWWW!

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend, Sue!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Karen-I'm so glad you got a faster computer. So looking forward to you posting more!

      Delete
  8. Right there with you on the skink. I don't like sudden moving things by me either. I think maybe I heard your scream all the way down here. Ha!
    Your flowers look awesome. Very smart to tuck in each bed with the donkey doo as it finishes for the season. They'll be all ready to go next spring.
    Wanted to let you know, the Agastache cana I planted this spring is short but it is blooming and I even saw a hummingbird feeding on it the other day!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. GonSS-so glad to hear about the Agastache...it really is stunning in full bloom and tough as nails--great for your location.

      Delete
  9. Sue,

    Your flowers look wonderful!

    I don't think I have ever seen a Skink or a walking stick...maybe they don't live this far north??? I hope not!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zoey-LOL!-they live here--and they are actually GOOD guys. Just a bit, um, creepy. Have a great weekend. And watch the potting soil--skinks love the moist coolness of it.

      Delete
  10. Your flowers are just so beautiful! I had never seen a walking stick or a spink. Enjoy your break. Nancy

    ReplyDelete
  11. First off, how did I miss this post?? I just now found it! (Hmmm, time for a check on my bifocal prescription?)

    Any kind of bug doesn't bother me. I could let that walking stock crawl all over me and I'd enjoy watching it. BUT your little skink is too, too much like a snake or worm (which DO send me hopping around with the heebbie-jeebies) and I did squeek like a girly-girl when the picture of him came up. If I had grabbed him in the potting soil, I would probably have had a heart attack.

    Now, regarding that first picture of your yard/garden you posted? You lifted that out of a professionally done (both grown and photographed) glossy magazine, right? Your talent for growing flowers is PHENOMENAL. You blow me away!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mama Pea-blush blush. You always say the kindest things.

      I hate crawly things myself--more the "surprise" factor. Those lovely blue tarps I always have draped over various parts of the garden always seem to contain some surprise or another. I hate it. Anymore, when it comes time to "de-tarp" something, I have Don pull it off. I stand back until WHATEVER is done slithering away. Blech!!

      Delete
  12. OH wow. Your gardens look amazing, Sue. What a riot of color and texture. Looks like a magazine spread. You're hard work sure has paid off - in spades!

    Check out that walking stick! I remember seeing them when I was a kid, but not for decades. Although just today I was blown away to find a preying mantis on one of the butterfly bushes. I've not seen one for years. Aren't they amazing. Alas, I've not seen a newt, salamander, lizard, snake, or other reptile or amphibian (except toads) at this house. Such a shame.

    Hope Autumn is less harsh than summer was. It'd be nice to see the leaves turn color.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Kris--I've NEVER seen a preying mantis-so that would be a great find for me. Lots of toads and frogs here. The snakes can stay hidden. Blech!
      :D

      Delete
  13. Beautifull gardens and interesting creatures.... I'm truly impressed. Thanks for sharing it all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Troutbirder-thank you so much for your compliment!
      :)

      Delete
  14. Love the sunflowers and white phlox.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Jason-I appreciate the visit!
      :)

      Delete
  15. Ooooh jealous - your garden is beautiful!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And yours is PRODUCTIVE. I believe THAT'S the important part, oh Queen of the Brandywines!
      :)

      Delete
  16. Your flowers are magnificant!! Gorgeous gardens!! Wishing mine looked so cool and collected!! We are back up to 108 yesterday and who know what today, it was 100 by the time I went back in the building at 1:00 today! YUCK!! Next Monday or so our nighttime temps look like they may dip into the 50's! Fall is on the way! Enjoy your travels!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh no, Melanie-I didn't realize you were back to being so warm out again. Blech! By Friday, our highs will only reach the upper 60's--hurray! I see some good gardening clean-up weather ahead!

      Delete
  17. Replies
    1. Well thank you, Mrs. Pickles! I appreciate that!
      :)

      Delete
  18. Your flowers don't look like they are expecting cold weather soon. They are going strong! I'm thinking I've had zebrinas skip seasons before. I don't have any this year.

    I enjoyed your critter photos. We don't have walking sticks or skinks, but we do have praying mantises and garter snakes. I am not afraid of the snakes, but am always startled when I see them, and have been known to scream.

    I hope you have a good trip. I am not ready for winter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Sue-I'm so surprised that we haven't had a frost yet....it's been an odd year and I guess it continues.
      Hope you get some good soaking rains. I think of your garden often....
      Have a wonderful weekend.

      Delete
  19. Your Northern Michigan garden is lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Love your garden photos. Our weather in Maine have been very similar except no 90 degree days. You use Donkey Doo...I use Moo Doo. I haven't added it in the fall, usually add it to my vegetable garden as soon as the snow melts in Maine. Do you think I should change my schedule?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Karen-lucky you with no 90', though I can't complain-it's a dry heat-hahaha!
      You grow such beautiful tomatoes, I don't think you need to change a thing. I know plenty of folks that put on "doo" in the spring. I've just always done it in the fall--fits my schedule better, I think.
      Enjoy the day and thanks for stopping
      Sue

      Delete
  21. Awesome photos!! I haven't seen a walking stick in YEARS and I've never seen a Skink--wth is that? ((shudder))

    ReplyDelete
  22. What a glorious garden you have! Thank you so much for sharing it. So perfectly neat and tidy.
    Stephen@DelCoMG

    ReplyDelete
  23. Your property is SO beautiful. It truly is an inspiration. Would you mind if I used one or two for my "Inspiration Thursday" post and of course give you full credit and a link back to your blog? They really do inspire me when I see them.

    Will miss your blog but I understand, we'll be here waiting for you when you get back. :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi 1st man--go ahead--I appreciate your interest in the garden. We all can get ideas from each other--the very best part about gardening is always sharing. Have a great weekend

      Delete
  24. Hi Sue, I couldn't find anywhere to post on your next blog but I just wanted to say tha you have a beautiful place!!! Nancy

    ReplyDelete
  25. I'm gonna miss you, but you'll be on my mind every time I turn on my computer and see one of your gorgeous pictures as my desktop! Have a good trip, and remember my email address :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who would EVER forget you! I'll still TRY to get to some blogs--but I've been actually SLEEPING (!!!) and I'm liking it.
      Hugs to you!

      Delete
  26. Hi Sue, It seems we are all coming to your previous post. Have a safe and wonderful trip with your husband...happy anniversary! I'll be thinking of you on your travels. We are off again as well...leave on the 3rd of October for Europe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Karen-How wonderful. I'll be looking forward to catching up on those posts!! Have fun!
      :)

      Delete
  27. I couldn't see where to leave a comment on your more recent post, so I'll add it here. Enjoyed your beautiful garden and wonderful mixture of plants and colours. Your stone cottage looks fascinating and very charming. I love the deep violet alyssum, and your dahlias --- are they tuber-grown or seedling ones? So many things I enjoyed and could comment on.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Sue, Your gardens are just beautiful. I love the bed by the house where the little wagon resides. This is my first visit - I came over from the other Sue's (Corner Gardener). I like what I see here!

    ReplyDelete