We had a lot of yellow plums, as usual. Trevor and family got to enjoy some of them. I still have many pureed, frozen jars of them, so only ate fresh ones off the tree, this year. The purple plum has had an abundant crop. I have 14 or 16 packages of processed, frozen fruit, and we have enjoyed 5 or 6 dozen of them fresh from the tree.
We have had about a week of Autumn weather and got about an inch of rain. And then we have been back to summer weather again. Everything is very dry. I have been watering the pots by hand. I added new topsoil and some mushroom manure to the deck and patio pot, including the orange trees. The orange trees also got some citrus fertilizer. We will see if this helps them to bloom, if ever they will bloom. The light garden is looking ok with a few of the orchids forming buds and in bloom. The African violets have been very nice after their repotting some time ago.
My milkweed project is not going too great. I have one speciosia (showy) milkweed that the caterpillars need for food. This from a plant that Dave sent me. I have 3 seedlings that I grew from seed he sent me. They are in pots also and bloomed with the orange blossoms, and have slender green leaves. The silver/hairy leaved showy one bloomed with pink blossoms.I have a tuberosa milkweed (orange blossoms) growing in the cutting garden. A few weeks ago I got 2 swamp milkweed (pink blossoms) and have potted them both up. The leaves appear to be green slender ones, so am not sure if the caterpillars will like them. I have a source for more showy milkweed seeds and will order them and plant them up, for growing over winter. In a year or two, I hope to have enough showy milkweed to feed some monarchs. I expect to keep the showy in pots, so that I can bring them indoors when and if I get any eggs laid on them. I have a source for Monarch releases and hope they contain female and male butterflies. I hope to try them out next summer. Perhaps for a date in early August or late July.
I have 5 pots of lupine seed that I brought from Tahsis potted up and hope they sprout soon. My Manitobe campula-looking plant from Sandy is doing pretty good in the front center garden. I have put the pussy toes looking plant that I collected from Battleford near it in the front garden. It, too is surviving. I have a found a source. -- Russell Nursery, in North Saanich, -- for native plants and hope to get a couple of shrubs for the woodland. My primula bed in the back garden looks to be thriving.
This has been a year for renovations.. taking out a too big bird's nest spruce, a juniper, and the improvement of the deck/patio pots, cut back the firethorn in the spring and now it is covered with berries. The robins arrive in flocks to feed in late December. The holly tree is also full of berries for them.