Wednesday, November 6, 2013

A Summer in Snapshots :: Part Two

1. More turquoise toes. And a bark dye stock. I did a little natural dyeing this summer. I will share photos of the tumeric-dyed Romney soon. This particular dye bath never went anywhere though. I had to leave the bark to soak for two weeks. And then I forgot about it and next time I checked it there were little creatures swimming in the water. Maybe next summer I will have more success with bark and dyeing.
2. My favorite spot to spin in the summer is out on the cement slab that functions as a patio for us. Part of the day it is shaded and part of the day the sun shines on it. At the height of summer it is often too hot to spin there in the sun but there's normally shade in the mornings and certain times in the Afternoon. I like to spin here in the evenings too, when everything is glowing and golden. I hung my lighthouse chimes in the tree and between those, the birds, the pretty flowerbeds, and the general sounds of summer it makes a nice place to congregate in the evenings.
3. We have a long hedge of Concord Grapes that my Grandpa planted on the property years ago. They are old and gnarly, and they need a great deal of love. I've done some research on when to prune them and how to care for them. Three years in a row someone stole the grapes right out from under us. Last year however we were able to pick them first and they made the most delicious grape jelly. Nothing compares to homemade grape jelly. Sadly to say they didn't do as well this year so no jelly until next fall.
4. When Queen Anne's Lace first unfurls it is glorious to behold. I've heard these also make excellent dye. 
5. & 6. Purple Cone Flower (Echinacea Purpurea) and Painted Daisies from my flower patch in the garden. Interesting fact I learned about Echinacea today, its name originally came from the Greek word echinos which means hedgehog. This is in reference to the spiky center of the flower.
My flowers did very well this summer. They bloomed all summer and very late into October. Cold weather and frost have finished them off for this year. I'm looking forward to adding to the patch next year. Winter is the time to study seed catalogs and plot out next year's gardening strategy.
7. We had a wonderful apple crop this year. These were also planted by my Grandpa, many  years ago. They've never done well for us but this year both trees were loaded with apples! We picked a few in September but most of them weren't ready until recently. We just finished picking them last week. I would like to make apple butter out of some of them. But many will end up as pie or just be eaten as snacks. 

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