Charm Pack Quilt – 1

A couple of weeks ago my physiotherapist handed me a Northcott charm pack with blue/turquoise fabrics – forty-two 5″ squares in 10 different coordinating colours. Not enough to make a quilt on it’s own. I went through my stash pulling out blues and turquoise fat quarters, half-yards, and scraps to cut another forty 5″ squares which would get me closer to what I’d need for a good-sized lap quilt. This quilt isn’t for me – she wants it to use in her new house.

Charm Pack with Quilt Backing Fabric

I thought about a lot of possibilities – finally decided to do a disappearing 9-patch. I didn’t want to invest a huge amount of time executing fine detail – setting up a 9-patch didn’t take long, cutting the blocks into quarters went quickly, arranging the resulting blocks is now my challenge. Because I didn’t think the blues/turquoises had enough life, I decided to use a golden yellow (with hints of blue) as an accent colour. I placed the yellow blocks at the centre of the 9-patch so they were all cut into quarters when I spliced the 9-patch blocks. Here is my current layout:

Disappearing 9-Patch using Charm Pack

Not big enough for a good size lap quilt – so far just a 5×7 array. The question I’m deliberating right now is whether to extend the quilt with a narrow border in light blue along with a wide dark border (I actually bought a second charm pack, in case I didn’t have enough for the quilt center – I could use the charm pack squares to piece an intermediate 2.5″ border then finish with a wider dark border). Or, I could add sashing between blocks/rows and space out these elements – but what colour to use for sashing?

I have to keep thinking about this – not sure what to do,  yet.

Oh, and I came across some appropriate backing fabric for half-price so I picked it up.

As I was leaving the physiotherapist’s office Tuesday, I noticed the additions to the tree in her yard. I think there’s a pottery studio in the garage – used by the previous owner – these faces bits of the potter’s work (top face missing it’s left eye).

Faces

Amaryllis 2 2018

I got a second amaryllis for Christmas – so far the first stalk has completely bloomed. There’s a second stalk well on the way and I think I’m seeing a possible third stalk peeking out….

Amaryllis 2 2018

Crazy weather – it snowed last night, then turned to rain, then the temperature dropped well below freezing leaving black ice patches. I haven’t been out yet today, but just about to venture forth.

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Amaryllis

Here is the  Amaryllis for this year (2017) – now fully in bloom (with a fifth flower still to come, it looks like). I picked up this bulb mid-November at the Superstore where I do most of my grocery shopping. I decided on a pale one for a change (I have mostly bought red ones). I love watching the flower stalk appear and grow so quickly and then the flowers begin opening – one by one.

Amaryillis (2017)

No second flower stalk from this bulb, it seems. Oh well, this one has lovely, happy blooms. I’ll enjoy them for the next week before they begin fading and then out it will go. I’ve never had any luck getting flowers for a second year.

And then I opened my Christmas bag of stuff from a friend yesterday and guess what – another amaryllis – this one a red/white blend. I can see the stalk already peeping out just the tiniest bit – another thing to look forward to.

Lavender?


I haven’t put a lot of effort into my container garden this year because I’m moving out July 12 and leaving it for the new owners. So in the spring to fill the pots I dug up sprouting plants from nearby garden beds and stuck them in the containers which would normally hold showy annuals. 

Two pots held forget-me-nots which bloomed early, then they were attacked by mildew, so yesterday I pulled them out but wanted to replace them with something. I found some inexpensive New Guinea impatiens, four seedlings in a basket, and another which has purple flower on a stalk – looks like it might be lavender but I’m not detecting any lavender scent yet, maybe the flowers aren’t far enough along. In any case they fit the bill and look good in the pots.

The Siberian iris has started blooming – in another day or two there will be several fully open. The single small petunia seedlings I stuck in the hanging pots has filled out and looks great. Their purple colour complements the iris.

The rhododendron flowers are also now opening.


And the two hibiscus which I am taking with me look like they will have a couple of new flowers each day:


I am going to miss watching everything grow. However I will still have my indoor garden with me (most of it, anyway):


A house without plants just isn’t a home, as far as I’m concerned!

More Spring

My local supermarket has a rather good plant section with phaelanopsis, an assortment of tropical plants and occasionally something unusual.


Last week I spotted this container with osteospermum and purple campanula. Had my name on it – it’s happy in my sunny living room window!

Sunny (Although Cold) Afternoon

 

indour Garden Mid-winter

 
I’ve been out doing errands and have just come home. Since I’ve added a quilt to my living room sofa I’m much more inclined to stop and read for a bit here (why I didn’t that years ago is beyond me!).

So I sat down to read, have taken a moment to enjoy the sun streaming in the large window and the plants lined up in front. I’d pruned away dead leaves and flowers on the weekend now they’re all looking happy.  They’ll start responding to a longer day in a couple of weeks.

It’s peaceful sitting here.

Mushrooms

Well, this was a surprise this morning! Little yellow mushrooms in the pot with the crown of thorns. So I take a closer look, then google to see what’s growing – I have Leucocoprinus birnbaumii, the yellow houseplant mushroom!


I’ve had this crown of thorns for nearly 20 years so I have to infer the spores arrived recently. So what do I do to get rid of the fungus?

There is a chance that spores from Leucocoprinus birnbaumii will travel to your other plants and infect them as well. So if you don’t want a house full of yellow mushrooms… you can try one of the following to get rid of them:

Remove the plant from the house – Either put it outside or get rid of the plant entirely. No doubt the simplest solution.

Attempt spore removal – Pick off all visible mushrooms from their base and replace the top few inches of potting soil. This may or may not work, depending on how deeply the fungus has grown into the soil.

Replace the soil entirely – As a last resort, you can try replacing the potting soil entirely. Remove the plant and try to get as much dirt as possible off its roots. Know that by doing this you may stress the plant, and the mushrooms could very well come back anyway.

Truthfully these mushrooms are very hard to get rid of. As the spores and mycelium (the vegetative growth of the fungus) are deeply settled in your plant pot and roots, it’s difficult to remove them entirely.

Well, I don’t want to get rid of the plant – it’s growing well. I will remove the mushrooms and as much of the mycelium as I can see. Add some fresh soil and hope for the best! I’ll dry out the pot – the plant is after all a cactus and will likely be happy dried out – to see if that helps.

I’m not concerned about the mycelium – I just don’t want spores infecting the rest of my indoor garden.

Ornithogalum Continued


This was the Ornithogalum a month ago – here it is today:

It continued blooming while I was away (cared for by my next door neighbour) and I’m guessing it will last a few more weeks! Amazing.

It’s a bulb so I’ll try to keep the foliage going for a bit before letting the plant die back. If I’m lucky, the bulbs will survive till next fall when I’ll replant them and see if I can encourage them to bloom.