Sowing wheat is fun, especially when it's done in a small bowl, on a wet cotton, just like we did with the beans when we were in school. In Romania we do this every year on November 30th when we're celebrating St. Andrew's day.
I never heard about poinsettia until four years ago. A week before Christmas, I saw a picture of poinsettia in a Romanian magazine and fell in love with it instantly! I told myself ”I have to buy me one of these!”…but I couldn’t have been more wrong! Poinsettias are very expensive in our country and I couldn’t possibly afford to buy one from the flowershop, so what was I to do? I badly wanted one poinsettia in my home, for Christmas!
Fall is the best time for starting a new garden. Some of you may ask why, so I'll just tell you all about what you shouldn't do when starting a garden on a piece of weed-infested, rundown land, sharing from my own experience .
Everyone knows that a four leaf clover, a rabbit's foot or a horseshoe are lucky charms, and many of us believe that they can really work. But did you know that a thistle seed can also be a lucky charm? I strongly believed that when I was a child, although I didn't know what that fluffy lucky charm thing was or where it came from.
Starting in spring, the market is full of the radishes' red globes. Just seeing one, I can almost hear the sound of the crisp bite and can't resist, I need to buy some! But this year I haven't been to the market for radishes because I am growing them in my own garden, although I never would have thought I'd do that.
Beautiful yellow flowers, looking like fireworks, with a strong scent and a delicious sweet taste, great for hot tea on a cold winter night. If you guessed linden, you are right! But if you want to have linden for your teas in winter, now is the time to harvest.
After weeding so much lately, I found myself playing with some of the weeds like I used to do when I was a child. I wish the kids nowadays would also find such fun in playing with the plants ! That's why I thought I should share these funny games with you and, maybe, you will try to play it with your children and grandchildren, for old times sake.
Do you know the names of the weeds in your lawn? I do! I was curious to find out what the weeds in my lawn are called, even if it was only to tell my husband which of them appeared again after weeding. This is how I have discovered that many of the grass species are considered weeds.
Recently I realized that dandelions have always been a part of my life. "How can that be," you ask? Well, the answer is easy: I've always loved their golden blooms on the lawns and never missed seeing them blooming in spring. But how could they be a part of my life just by blooming? Join me in this story and you'll find out!
Having lush grass, like a thick carpet to walk on or just to enjoy, while staying on the terrace, is everyone's dream. But how do you make it happen if not working hard? Some people hire a professional gardener to do it, but not my husband and I. We chose to do all the hard work by ourselves and now our little grandson can play on our lawn!
The gardens are blooming, sky is like a mirror/Bees have started their search through the orchards. The larks are singing a joy hymn/Thousands of butterflies are flying on the fields. Girls and boys are dancing in the gardens/Oh, I wish I had ten lives to sing of you , Nature!
Recently I was asked by one of our Dave's Garden friends what is dill good for and in what dishes can it be used. Another friend asked me what is lovage; he didn't even knew what it looked like. I know lots of uses for dill and lovage in our Romanian cuisine which I've already told our friends about, so let me share it with you too.
What can be more beautiful than datura's huge, white, immaculate trumpet flower, looking up the sky? Obviously, more datura flowers! However, if you decide to plant it in your garden, there is one small inconvenience: datura is an invasive plant which will make you work very hard to keep it from taking over of your garden; yet it will also repay you with its beauty.
I have always loved winter, "dashing through the snow, in a one horse open sleigh" and all, but not anymore! Last winter was very cold in our country. It snowed so much we could hardly get out of the street, my pipes froze and we didn't have water for a few days, the car wouldn't start due to the deep freeze and I had to shovel more snow than I have ever shoveled in my whole life! However, after seeing the first snow this year I find myself still fascinated by all the beauty of this season!
Christmas time is everyone's favorite season, full of joy and happiness, lots of yummy food, especially cakes and cookies! During the years, I wrote down lots of recipes, many for Christmas and New Year's Eve dinner, tried some of them and decided I like only a few . But cakes and cookies are the last dishes I make for these holidays... first comes the real food, which takes much more time to be cooked !
Do you like chocolate? Yes? I thought so! I do, too and I eat all kinds! But I also like to collect the wrappings, which I'm saving for some eventual use. This is something I've learned from my mom who would save all the chocolate wrappings and use them for Christmas crafts. I still find chocolate covers inside some old books where mom placed them for smoothing!
Have you watched ”The Young and the Restless”? I love it! I’ve always admired the Christmas decorations they make for their Christmas episodes. That’s where I first saw a pine cone Christmas tree…it was so cool! So I said to myself ”Why not?” and decided to try making one for Christmas…boy, that wasn’t so easy!
How many times have you dreamed of walking on a field full of red poppies and daisies, which are leaning slowly as the wind blows? I am living this dream every summer, when poppies and other herbs are starting to bloom all over the field around my house.
Palms, huge magnolias, laurels, pine trees, hydrangeas, roses, colorful oleanders, all growing together in a small town, near the beautiful Lugano lake, surrounded by the Alps. What can be more beautiful?
Have you ever eaten a French hollyhock's fruit, those small round seeds called "cheeses?” I have, as a child while playing outside with my dolls. My grandma told us that those seeds were edible and that they were called ”little breads.” Since we had so many marsh mallows everywhere on our playground, the "little breads” were perfect for cooking lunch for our dolls, especially when we could eat it for them!
What do you do when someone rips out a plant from your garden and just throws it away? And what if the plant was the only one you had, hardly grown from a rooting branch? Did I mention it was a baby forsythia shrub? Yes, it was and this happened to me, in my own garden. As you might imagine, I was devastated!
Many years ago, when Christmas ornaments weren't so plentiful like they are today, I saw my mom doing all kind of crafts for this beautiful holiday. I guess I inherited her skills--though not her imagination--so when I saw an ornament I wanted I preferred to do it myself. Even if the first one wasn't always the best, I persevered and finally got some nice ornaments for decorating my home for Christmas.
I love Christmas! But what I like best is decorating the Christmas tree... and the sound of carols, and the smell of Christmas goodies ...yummy! Santa Claus is on his way (that is me, of course!) But I just have to wait until everyone is asleep, so I can put the gifts under the tree!
I got used to classify my plants in “good” and “difficult”. I don't call them “bad” if they are difficult to be grown indoors and always try to learn more so I don't lose them. But this time I won't write about the “bad” plants. On the contrary, I'll tell you about the best plant I have, a plant which became like an old friend to me, the Hibiscus.
Planning a new garden on a plain, full of weeds ground can be difficult, but it's such fun! What should I do first, where do I start are such hard questions, but this was a challenge I was so happy to accept!
What could be more pleasant than taking an endless tour of some gorgeous gardens, full of so many beautiful plants with such colorful flowers? Queen Marie's Gardens in Bulgaria are such a delight and an amazing place to visit!
I'm always collecting seeds, everywhere I go: in a park, on the street or in someone's garden. Some people may think I'm nuts to get into the flower beds in search of ripe seeds! Well, I'm not. I'm just addicted to plants and I can't help myself from taking a few seeds from a plant I like, so I can have one too!
It all began a few years ago, when my husband said it would be nice to have some Thujas in our future garden. I knew they were really expensive at the nursery, so I thought I'd better try and start some from seeds.
Snowflakes, freezing temperatures and dark clouds...this is a winter day. There is no way I'm going to walk in the park in this weather! Still, the snow is too beautiful and the trees seem to be powdered with sugar...the atmosphere is magical. Let me take my coat, muffler, cap and gloves and let's go for a walk.