Saturday, April 28, 2007

Blue Skies and Empty Space

It is amazing how much work you can get done when you are focused, when the operating thought in your head is "This is It. It is time to be ruthless." There actually is an organized and clean nursery full of healthy plants in there. What a difference a couple of days of work makes.

Growing potted landscape plants in the tropics really is a full time job. I am confronting the plant addict in me who thinks I can grow that, so I will. My denial is slipping. Root it, sprout it, divide it, pot it, add water and a dash of Osmocote and watch out!

Things have a way of creeping up on you and creeping away from you without focus.

Empty spaces are appearing and the result is that what is left stands out more. Less clutter equals a tidier look that can be pleasing to the eye. Blocks of plants now proclaim who they are. I have a long way to go before a simple garden reappears.

My stack of pots is growing. I am a recycling kind of guy and they may be worth a few pennies at a garage sale.

Lawn creep is well under way as the perennial flowers are dug up. I haven't had the heart to yank the wild Basil yet. Perhaps I should now while the bees are distracted by the Holly tree.

I see blue skies above and in front of me. The re-invention tour is packing up for the road.

A new garden that will have an unknown influence on me awaits. A wild piece of land that has a few rhododendrons I know, maybe some native azaleas I hope and escapees from the crazy gardeners just up above most likely. Time will tell.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

A New Door Opens

Tomorrow when I wake up everything will be different. My work life here has officially ended. From this point forward all my energy will be directed to being able to walk through a new door.

I better get busy. There is a lot of moss on my rocks and cobwebs in the crevices.

Later that same day:

At the end of a spurt of busy I am having the realization that underneath my garden there is a very nice landscape. Once I have cleaned up, thrown out and sold off everything that needs to go I might actually be willing to show photographs of my garden as a living space. It has very good bones. I will work hard to make it nice enough to turn over to someone else. Pity that I will not be here to enjoy it.

As God as my witness, my own garden will not be the last one to get attention ever again.

Meanwhile Back at Kalaupapa

Lost in the sensory overload of a trip to Molokai was this video of the beach at Kalaupapa. What would you guys prefer, more buzzing bees on my 'East Palatka' Holly tree or a visit to the beach on Molokai?

I thought you might like a video with an ocean view more.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Seeing Things

And not saying much.

This is not what I need to be concentrating on.

Same plant different leaf different light different side.

This is a flower on a creeping plant related to Hibiscus that is now a weed because I forgot who it was and no longer cared.

God Bless all the soft green lawns.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Lost in Light

What was that paper work I was supposed to be doing?

Monday, April 23, 2007

Orchids Orchids Everywhere

Today was my last day working in the third garden of the first client I got when I arrived on Maui twenty years ago. We are one month short of having our 20th anniversary, Darling.

It has been an incredibly full and rewarding relationship. Each of the three gardens were unique, constantly evolving and never dull.

It was a long day. The garden is in perfect shape to turn over to the gentlemen who is buying my client list for a few magic beans.

I am tired, my back still hurts and it is time for my evening stroll through the garden to remind myself why I enjoy this so much. So there won't be an eloquent analysis of a long relationship that in many ways is too hard to describe.

Some things are not easy to capture in their full essence.

Two stubborn opinionated men collaborated and came up with gardens to be proud of. Even when there were days of disagreement and the tongues were flapping, the relationship held tight.

That is something to be thankful for and to celebrate.

Thank you John for everything you have done for me over all these years.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Into The Fold


At Organized Lines


Friday, April 20, 2007

Maui Afternoon

It has been a while since we had a movie. I thought I would capture another view of the garden that is soon to be no more.

I am in complete denial about being a plant addict which was why I could not participate in Hank's Gardeners Anonymous Five Crazy Things. Remember this is a backyard nursery too. Stuff just grows and I have very little to do with it. Don't let the jungley appearance fool you. I am perfectly within the bounds of normal gardening behavior.

You may spot a Monarch Butterfly in the video that was floating around as I was filming. My sweet kitty Greyman says goodbye too.

Aloha Maui No Ka 'Oi.

Blue Glory in the Morning

A good way to start the day before I go work on an irritation system.

Wish me luck.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Green Textures

After a few hours of maintenance, Picasa and Blogger are talking to each other again and the cursed red X's are gone and the pictures have returned.

I have been feeling a little green, a little split up and prickly.

Kind of stiff too. Things are not bending like they should.

Maybe even a little grey

A thousand different things to do. A thousand things to think about getting done.

It all seems to be coming together smoothly.

And then it splits up again into a thousand things. It looks soft, but has a pungent scent.

Then a whole new shape with rough edges appears. It has a very strong sweet lemony scent.

The edges smooth out. A little color is added.

It is very similar to the beginning. It has the same layout.
But it is a completely new and different thing.

Orchids Low Down

The positions I will get myself into to get a picture of a pretty flower must look comical to another observer.

Crawling along the driveway, some what contorted I try to adjust my self to the position of the flower instead of manipulating the flower to make it be in a better position to get a good shot.

Purple and White Orchids and and the Tire of an Orange Humvee.

First Flower

If you get a chance watch the PBS NOVA show First Flower. Lots of interesting tidbits on crazed botanists, China being the motherland of temperate horticulture, sex and bugs and lots of other goodies while hunting for the first flowering plant in the fossil record. Plenty pretty pictures too.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

April Blooms - The Mundane the Bad and the Ugly

What flowers have you not seen on this blog? What flowers might you never have seen? What would be new and different? What will I post for April Garden Bloggers Bloom Day?

What is blooming in my garden in Kihei, Maui, Hawaii on April 15th, the American Procrastinators Day of Reckoning?

Ilex x attenuata 'East Palatka'. This is the male tree in bloom. It is much more floriferous than the female tree on the other side of the house and unfortunately it blooms a little prematurely for the female tree to set a good berry crop. They arrived in my garden as seeds from a tree in Florida at the house where I grew up. There are not likely to be any other male suitors on the entire island of Maui for my female tree. It was sheer luck that I got one of each.

I am trying not to get hysterical about the disappearing bees. There are still plenty here. A gentleman from the Big Island left a comment on one of my bee posts saying a beekeeper neighbor there had lost a third of his hives.

The action on this Holly Tree has always been a sight to behold when it is in bloom. Bees, wasps, flies and moths would flock to this tree in droves. The Anoles would move in by the dozens to feast on the flying creatures. It was a veritable feeding frenzy in miniature with an accompanying audible buzz and rustle.

This year it seems much more subdued. I will watch over it the next few days and weeks to see if it is discovered and the action begins. I have been waiting to film this event for the Tube.

The few bees and big flies that were there today were less than co-operative in posing, but I managed to capture a natural pair of red eye, no flash was used in this shot.

This is the White Shrimp Plant, Justicia betonica. The green veining on white is quite interesting. I like using this as a white filler in flower arrangements. I collected this from the side of the road on the North Shore.

The weeds are always blooming and attract their share of pollinators.

An evil Bougainvillea that captured me with its white and pink blended blush. I have never treated it well and it has stabbed me repeatedly in return.

A verbena I also collected on the side of the highway in a section of mowed grass. It may be a form of Verbena tenuisecta. I am not sure. It is kind of a wild thing in my garden now, having been used as a groundcover for a bit.

Your standard Pentas lanceolata. These grow as weeds in my garden now too.

Galphimia glauca, a nice small shrub with brittle stems that blooms almost year round.

Ever seen a Manila Palm tree in bloom?

I think I will let you guess what this ugly bloom might be. A hint, there are male and female individual plants. This is the bloom of one of the sexes.

More Ugly, these are the feet that wander through the garden in the evening light carrying form weary eyes trying to take nice pictures for cyber consumption.

Congratulations to all the nominees for the first annual Mouse and Trowel awards!

Walk to the End of the Block

Your typical Datura picture. I have not yet been able to call these Brugmansia. I like the word Datura better. This tree has been murdered twice and is back to eight feet tall and in full bloom again.

An intimate look at the trumpets hairy funnel.

How is it that piles of rounded river rocks just seem to appear one day like I collected them or something at some point? Now I have rocks to get rid of.

These round candy canes, the ripening fruit of a Cordyline caught my eye at the top of the driveway.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Common Maui Sunsets

Some days are less spectacular than others. The sun just kinda sets without making a big fuss. The roof line of my humble cottage blocks the sun and frames the sky.

Which made this sunset from four days ago that I told Pam I would post for a bi coastal toast to a good planet seem a bit more interesting. At the time I felt it was too ordinary. Today it looks like a yummy Triple Layer Cake. I think I need to stop looking at forms, drawings and screens and eat some dinner.