Day 48, The Flower Rocket Experiment: Disappointment has Taken Root

It’s day 48 of this experiement. The Flower Rockets have been planted since Mother’s Day, and nothing much has happened.

Day 48, Flower Rocket pot. I'm excited about the maple trees.
Day 48, Flower Rocket growth (or lack thereof). I’m excited about the maple trees that blew into the pot.

As this was a gift, I’m not sure if the instructions were followed. I assume they were, since my parents are both good gardeners. (And they can read.) They helped my kids plant these things. Anyway, the box says, “Just plant … & water!” So those two steps are covered.

The box does warn that drying out will decrease growth. I may have slipped on that lately, but for the most part I have faithfully watered my Rockets since they were given to me. The box claimed I’d have “Continuous blooming all summer long!” I mean, when you see the “As Seen on TV” logo, you take things with a grain of salt, I guess.

Day 48 Flower Rocket pot. The mystery flowers are growing in the upper left.
Day 48 Flower Rocket pot. The mystery flowers are growing in the upper left.

Well at least I’ve got these maple trees growing, so that’s interesting. The mystery flower sprouts are doing well, too. That might be a marigold on the upper right.

It’s disappointing, but hey, not all experiments give you the results you want. I hope to get one flower out of these two pots by the time the cold weather comes in fall. If not I can always bring these inside and continue the disappointment 😛

Nice Car: Green 1975ish MG B

I can’t quite put this in the “Dream Car” category as the Ford Galaxie 500 I saw recently, but this green MG convertible still looks like a lot of fun.

Green MG B "rubber bumper"
Green MG B “rubber bumper”

Again, I don’t know much about cars, but after some, um, diligent research on Wikipedia, it seems like this may have been made around 1975. According to this image on Wiki and the scanning of image search results I did, this model was known as a “rubber bumper.” According to classicandperformancecar.com

North American regulations requested a raised ride height and polyurethane-covered bumpers required to withstand 5mph impacts without sustaining damage. Although condemned at the time by fans, the federalised MGB was actually a successful styling job compared with its Italian rivals. Later B-series engines in North America were reduced to a single Zenith Stromberg carb, emission equipment and a catalyst. Now these black bumper cars offer the best regular use practicality and value of all the MGBs.

I saw this car on one of my trips to the farm. It was fun to see a sporty little car like this sticking out among the tractors.

(I can see the peonies in the background of the photo. Oh peonies, I miss you already!)

Progress in my Container Garden

It’s always encouraging to see progress in your garden.

Yellow Boy tomato
‘Lemon Boy’ tomato

I have teeny, tiny tomatoes growing now. Seems like the spider shaped flowers have produced some fruit. Above is a tomato growing from the flower from my ‘Lemon Boy.’

And this will be a cherry tomato when it grows up.

Tiny cherry tomato
Tiny cherry tomato

This Hungarian Yellow Wax pepper is really coming along. Just three weeks ago it was a flower.

Hungarian Yellow Wax pepper growing nicely
Hungarian Yellow Wax pepper growing nicely

These are radish flowers. When I plant radish seeds, they generally don’t grow radish bulbs, but they will produce flowers if I let them go long enough. I may actually have one radish out there, which is exciting. I’ll peek sometime soon, but I don’t want to disturb it much. The rest of the plants in the pot were either eaten as lettuce greens when they were shoots, or they are growing wild and making flowers.

Radish flowers
Radish flowers

This is one of the pea plants. I was interested in playing with the HDR setting with the sun behind the leaves.

Pea plant
Pea plant

Writing 101 Assignment: Dear 7th-Grade Perm

Today’s WordPress Writing 101 assignment was to open the nearest book to page 29 and see what word jumps out at you. I saw the word permanent. It was used in the phrase “permanent vacation,” but after a moment of thought I heard my grandma’s voice saying that she was “going to the beauty parlor to get a permanent.” The writing challenge also suggests writing in the form of a letter. Here goes.

Dear 7th-Grade Perm,

What a disappointment you were. My hair and I, we had such high hopes. You were supposed to change things. You were supposed to make our existence in middle school at least slightly more bearable. All the other girls had had perms for at least a year, and Mom finally agreed that we could get one, too. What happened? You really dropped the ball. Continue reading “Writing 101 Assignment: Dear 7th-Grade Perm”

Cheery Cherry Picking

We went back to the farm this week to pick my favorite fruit: cherries.

red cherries on a tree
Red, ripe, and ready to eat!

One month ago these trees were in bloom. Flowers are pretty, but I prefer to see trees like this, filled with fruit.

Cherries are so juicy, sweet, and luxurious. One thing I can’t figure out: How can the flavor be so concentrated and rich? I usually pop another one in my mouth and contemplate….

red cherries on a tree
Let me check to make sure these are ripe.

I learned from the farmer that cherries are a difficult crop to grow. The trees here are protected from the rain by an open-sided greenhouse structure. The arches overhead are covered with plastic to keep the rain from falling on the fruit. Too much rain will make the cherries burst.

cherries growing on a tree
Plastic overhead keeps the rain off the cherries

Another problem with growing cherries is that the birds also think they are a tasty treat. The plastic greenhouse-style roof that keeps the rain off is connected to nets that are staked into the ground. This helps keep the birds away from the trees. In addition to the nets, the farmers put up several speakers playing a very loud bird call. The farmer explained that it’s a distress call, so that when birds hear it they will stay away, thinking that something horrible is happening to one of their feathered friends over there.

flowers in front of the farm store
Flowers in front of the farm store

The combination of the 90° heat and the plastic tarps overhead made cherry picking a rather sweaty endeavor, but we were cheered by the delicious, juicy cherries and the baskets we brought home.

American flag and a flag with a strawberry
The farm also does strawberry picking.