Friday, June 19, 2015

Transitioning to a new site

We are transitioning over to a WordPress site with the blog. This is going to give us a little more flexibility and it's actually a complete website not just a blog. Check out the latest and greatest!

The archived items will stay here.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Interesting Blooms

Here are a few interesting blooms you don't see every day.

The one on the left is a persimmon tree. Not showy at all, in fact it's nearly impossible to tell that it's blooming at all. The blooms all face downward and they are well concealed with leaves. They smell a little like rotting meat too. They must rely on alternative pollinators. This asian "hana fuyu" persimmon is supposed to be self pollinating but it's always better to have multiple trees. At the moment it's the only one we have however.

This is the first time this tree has ever bloomed. It buds on new wood.

Here is an interesting bloom many people may not have seen before, it's vetch. These blooms are very small.

On the right is some volunteer honeysuckle that is in full bloom. Honeysuckle is very fragrant! I wasn't aware of this but it is said to have many herbal actions and is widely used in Traditional Chinese Medicine. It's said to be cooling, so a good thing for fevers.

Here are some links: bearmedicinal

The hibiscus overwintered inside and is now beginning to bloom. That's a showy flower! They've got some medicinal/culinary properties too. Hibiscus tea is one common usage for the flowers.

The next bloom is valerian. It has hundreds tiny flowers and a very fragrant licorice aroma. The seeds are very tiny and resemble sea anemones. They float on the breeze like dandelions.

Beebalm or bergamot has a very interesting flower. Beebalm is also referred to as Oswego tea and can be used to make a good tasting tea which I prefer to the usual tea.