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It seems like the garden in a blog named “Cosmos and Cleome” ought to have some Cosmos in it, yes?  Well, here is the one Cosmo in my garden this summer, in the vegetable garden.  It is a leftover from some nursery stock I bought and planted elsewhere.  Hopefully it will show me some buds and bloom soon!

Normally, I have a small patch self-seeded Cosmos in a corner of my front garden.  I think the mild winter and lack of snow prevented the seeds dropped last fall from sprouting this spring.  This fall, I may scatter some cosmos seeds under the bark mulch, and make sure I put a blanket of leaves on top, just in case we have another snow drought.   Once I realized I would have no self-seeded cosmos,  I planted some nursery stock here, but apparently did not water it enough during hot, dry July:Here is the sum total of my garlic harvest for this year.  This was the first time I’ve grown it, and in doing some research, (after the fact, of course!) I see I made several mistakes.  Garlic doesn’t like competition, and I both planted it amidst too many other  plants and neglected to keep it weeded.  I didn’t mulch it over the winter (that lack of snow again!), and  I watered it inconsistently.  Now that I’ve done some reading, I feel confident that I’ll have better luck next year.

One of my best gardening friends let me take some tall balloon flowers from her garden.  I already have a shorter variety which I very much love.  I hope these tall ones spread!My husband and I went blueberry picking for an hour and a half yesterday morning,  and brought home fourteen pounds of berries.  I regret not taking the camera so I could show you how loaded with fruit the bushes are.  We’ll go back later this week.

My rhubarb has not sent up any seed stalks yet, in spite of the high heat and dry conditions this summer.  I pulled some this morning.  NBC’s Today show had a British chef demonstrating a recipe for Rhubarb Fool; I think I’ll try that, since it doesn’t require turning on the oven!

There are still a fair number of very thin stalks on the plant, so maybe I’ll be able to harvest more in a week or two.  I just wish the plant were more accessible–I have to lean WAY over the garden fence to reach it!





In a previous post, I wrote about a hybrid tea rose which has never bloomed.  The other day, I found a few of this lovely creature curled in its leaves, which have been damaged.  The Internet informed me they are rose slugs.  I sprayed the leaves with neem oil, and haven’t seen any since.  No sign of damage on any of my other roses.

Here are two astilbes and a Heuchera “Purple Palace.”  Do you suppose I should separate them?  This spot in the front garden is not as sunny as this picture would lead you to believe–just a few hours in the early morning, so it’s a good spot, light-wise, for both.  I think the Heuchera wins this spot, and the astilbes will go somewhere else:Does any of my readers know whether it is a good idea to use the dirty water gleaned from a water change in a tropical fish tank to water house or garden plants?  (Told you this post is random!)

My family and I visited Pittsburgh last weekend.  (Lovely city, by the way!)  I very much wanted to visit Phipps Conservatory and the botanical gardens, but the vote was 3 to 1 in favor of the Carnegie Science Center.  On the way home we stopped at Penn State, where we did take an evening stroll around the relatively new H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens, so I got my garden fix and a good deal of inspiration.  Here’s a photo of the very colorful demonstration garden:Finally, here is a teaser for the last installment of my series on the Herrenhauser Gardens in Germany, which I promise to write this week!  Fuchsias on parade!