Some Eats, and Some Garden Treats

As far as the garden goes, part of me feels like we are on the never-ending death march towards fall. I am hopeful that I can keep all the Japanese maples watered well enough so that I get some fall color this year. I’m pruning back most of the flowers in the hopes that I’ll get some fresh blooms. I’m contemplating putting in a drip system. Almost every day I spend some time watering, and soaking the trees. I put the hose on very low by a tree, and run back in the house and set the timer for 20 or 30 minutes. I’m thinking about whether I want to add more stone paths or more beds. There’s a little more room out there! MLG says we are due for a La Nina this fall. I don’t particularly like rain, but I would welcome some water to fill up my well (I don’t really know how that works, but I think it will help.) In the meantime, the weather is heading back up to over 100 degrees by the weekend.

I’ve been enjoying little mini-bouquets. Petunias actually last a long time as cut flowers!


And here’s that white daylily. Surrounded by the forest of fairy impatiens. I’ve learned a bit about self-seeding plants this year. I only had 2 fairy impatiens last year, in two different locations. I was so excited to have so many little seedlings in the spring, that I let most of them grow. That was too much! They have done well, and are very pretty. But there are places where the plants below them are not getting any sun at all. I have started ruthlessly weeding some of them out.


Here’s a new recipe I developed, Blueberry Protein Coffee Cake.ย I really like it, and its a good source of protein for a breakfast cake. The recipe inspiration was Georgie’s Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake. I love it filled with blueberries, and decided I didn’t need the cinnamon streusel at all.


And I know you won’t believe it, but I never buy raw shrimp. I just buy the ones that are already cooked. Lately those have been rather pricey, so when I saw these raw shrimps on sale, I bought them. Oh, yum yum. I just put five shrimpies in a sandwich bag with some mashed garlic and a teaspoon of olive oil. I cooked them on a little cast iron pan, which I think helps with getting that nice crust on them.

Here I served them over some veggies and some of those edamame noodles. ย BTW, those edamame noodles are so good, but very dry. I still need to find some way to serve them that does not involve a bucket of olive oil. Any ideas?


My favorite meal this summer is taco salad. Ever since Cammy shared Pancho’s Tropical salad dressing recipe (which I adjusted for my own needs) I can’t get enough of it. I think I really like the taste of cumin. And of course, it is a bit sweet. I bought some turkey burger patties at Costco that I didn’t particularly like. They worked perfect for turning into the taco meat. (I just use the packaged taco seasoning.) As you know, there are a ton of things that you can add to taco salad, but most of the time I opt for these simple ingredients. (if I have cilantro in the fridge, I like to add that too.) I chop them up, put them in the big bowl, and dress them with that salad dressing, and then dump the taco meat on top. Here is a link to my version of the tropicale dressing.ย 


And that’s just about all the news that’s fit to print around here. I spend a lot of time every day in the studio, working on my art. Click on over to The Other Blog, if you want to see what’s new.


10 thoughts on “Some Eats, and Some Garden Treats

  1. I adore mini-bouquets! Yours is so cheerful it makes me smile. With my lack of sun and lack of gardening drive/skill, my yard can be slim pickin’s for bouquets. But a single blossom and a hosta leaf in a tiny vase can keep me happy for days.

    • I like the little bouquets better than the big ones! Hosta leaf–I need to include a little green in my bouquets–thanks for that tip.

  2. I got so turned off by those zero noodles things that I haven’t had the nerve to try any other faux noodle product LOL! Maybe you could soak the noodles or something?

    I am now just getting some flowers in bloom. All the coneflowers are coming in, which is always exciting to me. We are in that lull before the fall plants go on sale for planting. I have some on order, including a ton of bulbs (help me!!), and iris rhizomes.

    We are getting that heat this week. Luckily our water situation here is good and I don’t water too much, as we talked about the other day. I don’t do so well in the heat, though ๐Ÿ˜€

    • The edamame noodles are definitely not zero–200 calories, but 15 grams of protein. You cook them like regular noodles, so they’re not dry that way–hard to explain.

      Yes, I noticed that your flowers are looking all new and fresh like mine were months ago! If it weren’t so darned dry, I would probably be looking for some flowers to replace and freshen things up in the garden.

  3. Funny you mentioning the death march. As you can imagine, my patio which gets nearly full sun for 8-10 hours every day, is a tough place to have anything. I have found a few species of flowers that thrive but every year I seem to have something that doesn’t do well. As I glanced out the kitchen window this morning my thought was yep, it’s nearly August. So many of the flowers are looking raggedy. I always think about getting more/new/fresh flowers right about now. This year I won’t just because of when vacation falls. So some raggedy flowers until they are replaced by mums in September!

    The only fake noodles I do are zoodles so I’m no help to you there. I do love sundried tomato pesto on my zoodles so maybe something along those lines would work for your noodles as well? I’m sure you could figure out a way to modify as I know you don’t like to use a lot of oil.

  4. Well, I started to read your post and got to the watering part, which reminded me to go out and water our pot plants…and one day later, here I am finally remembering to comment! I vote for more stone paths, only because (well, not ONLY) they will reduce the amount of muddy paws you will have to deal with when El Nino comes. Also I really like your paths, and you know I’m living vicariously through you when it comes to a pretty yard, right?

  5. and why did I think petunias were EPHEMERAL??
    perhaps it is just I who can make anything living (PLANT! PLANT!!) die swiftly? ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Ahhh its a never ending cycle… more flower beds equal more watering…. uughh…its fun at first but can get quite old…ask me how i know? 20 years living in hot dry west tx…. Truly the only advice i can give is to use drought tolerant native plants….Maybe have one or two small beds that you plant some plants that might need special care but for the most part go native and drought tolerant… PLUS the more established your plants get the less water they will need…..Hang in there debby …Hugs! deb

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