Two Nice Days In A Row!

So much to do in two days before the temps drop to the low 40’s and highs in the low 50’s. I knew there was a reason I didn’t move my plants outside yet!

Have you been following the comments from Linda and Helen Jane – about their invasive plants? It scares me – I never want to plant these by mistake!

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Linda has something called creeping bellflower zombie weed and it has taken over her lovely perennial flower garden. It is invasive and nearly impossible to kill.

Helen Jane has something called Mexican Petunia or Ruellia simplex that was described as hardy and even though she lives in Texas, it can thrive in the heat!

This has been a public announcement for all the gardeners who read this!

Just did the chores – everybody is loving this nice day. Here’s one of the piles from cleaning the barn last Saturday. The chickens just love it!

This is my favorite chicken – I think she is so pretty!

Last night Reed and I sewed and he put his binding on followed by a lesson in a blind slip stitch.

Today was a lawn mowing day and then my new friends Ella and Dawson came out. We planted pumpkins and then we planted peas, sugar snap peas and radishes – still room for some zinnias. Such a funny little garden this year.

We are getting rain tonite – 100% – so that’s why I wanted to get those cool wet weather seeds planted.

I’m thinking about our reader friend, Jessica, who started chemo yesterday. Maybe she’ll leave a comment and tell us how it went.

I have a small quilt from Sew Charming on the longarm that will be on my list of things to do tomorrow afternoon. I’m also working on those charming 9 patches and cutting a small quilt that we originally made from madras plaids which led to the beginning of quilt kits. My mom was instrumental in packaging those kits. More about that when my project is finished.

I need to put my feet up – feels good to get work done outside, doesn’t it?

Ella loves the cats!

47 thoughts on “Two Nice Days In A Row!

  1. Betty Klosterman

    Barefoot!! It just feels so good on our feet. Mom always made me wash my feet before getting in bed. Wonder why?

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Betty Klosterman- can’t you just feel that black dirt between your toes? Haha! And your mom was right – so was mine. Dirty feet at night make for dirty sheets.

  2. Nikki M in Tx

    Rain..hard rain all morning..thank goodness got yard area mowed Thursday. Hay fields looking amazing…need to cut & bale…hopefully next week will be dried enough &have enough rainless days to do so….& man contracted with will show up!!!!

  3. Carol

    I have a severely invasive plant called Hawaiian Ivy. Very pretty but… planter beware! The only good thing about it is grasses do not invade the garden… no room!

  4. Diane Bauer

    I went to Lowe’s this morning and came home with geraniums and spikes for the planter boxes on my patio and strawberries and herbs for my back garden. Plenty of promises we were past the freezing stage. Got them all out in this morning and guess what??? Freeze warning tonight! Ugh. I will cover everything tonight and pray!!

  5. Kathy in western NY

    So cute to see kids going barefoot in the garden and petting the kitty cats. I bet they loved the attention! I am so happy to hear Reed is learning to bind his quilt with the blind hem stitch as he could have taken the easy route and turned it over and finished stitching it down by machine. This way with the hand stitch produces such a beautiful binding in my opinion. Thanks for sharing your day with us Mary.

    1. Sharon Lowy

      Loved the picture of the children.. little barefoot boy and little girl with her hands on her hips ..Reed is sewing with such intensity. Beautiful and so wholesome. Love your chickens, cats, dogs, goats and especially Hazel. Thanks for sharing your day❤️

      Raining in Yorkville, Illinois

    2. Nikki M in Tx

      Agreed…hand blind stitch makes the bed looking binding. Will machine stitch placemats but that is about it.

  6. Susan the Farm Quilter

    We have kochia at the farm that is just miserable. Too bad it isn’t pretty, but it is almost impossible to kill as well. Your garden is going to be lovely, especially with helpers like those around!! Enjoy the nice weather while you have it…ours has not been nice out west and is headed your way! More time for sewing and quilting!!

  7. Anne

    My biggest menace is still grass! I spend so much time just trying to get it out of things! Creeping Charlie is pretty bad too!
    Love the kids! Just started my two year old grandson digging in the garden… this will be fun:)

  8. PJ

    As always I love your blog n photos !!!! Prayers to your friend Jessica with chemo just hope it did not make her ill, I had no issues with it but know many do so hope the best for her! 👍🏼♥️

  9. Kim J LeMere

    I have never heard of those weeds so I looked them up and it was surprising to learn that they can sneak in in the dirt from a transplanted plant and then your garden has a problem. Glad I don’t have to worry at this point but I did learn something new today.
    Love the pictures of the barefooted kids planting in the dark Iowa soil, what fun! We are entering strawberry season here and the humid summers. Enjoy those few days of cooler weather.

  10. Peggy S

    Oh, my!! Reed’s quilt is almost complete!! What great backing fabric!
    Here in Minnesota, it’s supposed to be in the 40’s again. Not freezing, though!! I never put stuff out until at least Memorial Day for safety!! Too much effort to have to go out & cover everything!!
    Your garden sounds great, Mary!! Hope the kids will have fun helping out!! So nice of you to teach the finer points “farming!!”

  11. Carol

    OK, more on that “Hawaiian Ivy”. It’s name is actually Chameleon TriColor Houttuynia 3, it thrives anywhere, meaning everywhere, sun shade cool wet dry shade sun… never never plant this stuff, but if you do… please take mine! It grows “vigorously “ and is deer resistant. Try as I might to get rid of it, I am sure I will die first!

    1. Patricia

      Oh, you have got to be kidding. I bought this at a nursery years ago as a pretty groundcover. It hasn’t invaded as much as you say here but now I’m worried because I have so many other invasives that I will never get rid of. I live in Md. Yikes.

  12. Linda Rouse

    You have made your public announcement about the Zombie plant.
    Love your chickens and you are such a great mentor to those kids.
    I figured out that I get your weather the next day. I live in Oconomowoc, WI. It is suppose to rain all day tomorrow. My husband and son are in a big fishing tournament near Madison. So I will be sewing and worry about them in the storms…..yipeee. I asked if a tournament is ever cancelled due to weather and they said no. They tell all the fishermen to use their best judgement……right?? Men…….

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Linda Rouse – you’ve done all of us a service by telling us about the zombie weed and I for one appreciate it. I’m not a Master Gardener and I would probably not have known the difference! Yes, it’s raining steady here tonight but it’s not stormy. Tomorrow will be. Old and tomorrow night even colder! Get ready!

  13. Judi L.

    I, too, worked outside in the flower bed today. Several years ago a friend gave me quite a few irises and I planted them in a somewhat contained area of the flower bed. They have multiplied like crazy and really shouldn’t be where they are anymore. All I did today was clean out the dead leaves and stalks. Plan to thin them out as much as possible and hopefully take them to my Bunco group on Tuesday to share. As pretty as they are, I wish they would bloom longer than a week or so. I used to have the Mexican zinnias, as well…shared with me by a friend. And, yes, they multiply as well. I couldn’t wait to get them dug up and out. SO far they’ve not come back. Good luck with your garden. Ah…life on the farm! Oh, and great job, Reed, on your binding.

  14. Charlotte

    Precious children and their good, wise friend Mary who teaches so much! Love this post!

  15. Pat Smith

    Invasive plants really are a scourge. In Vermont we have the awful Japanese Knotweed. Nothing kills it including the dangerous Roundup. It has big leaves, spreads by runners under ground, and is everywhere shading and crowding out the native plants. I was in Ireland a few years ago, and it’s everywhere there too. I planted Mexican Petunias here in FL, and yes, it is invasive, but pretty so I just keep pulling out the volunteers. I think it’s so great that Reed is learning how to do so many things. His wife will be thrilled someday. Hope he learns some cooking, too. I love seeing the little ones helping in the garden. You are providing such valuable experiences to these children.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Pat Smith – he will never learn to cook from me – haha! But his mom is a great cook!

  16. Arrowhead Gramma

    My thoughts and prayers are with Jessica. As someone who is nearly eight years in remission, please know that you can get through the chemo treatments, even on the days when you get discouraged. Stay strong and know that others are by your side with prayers. ❤️🙏❤️

  17. KathyG from Oak Creek

    Here in Wisconsin we have creeping Charlie and it is awful. It strangles everything. I planted my beans and peas today between last night’s rain and this afternoon’s. It’s been raining here since Thursday and isn’t supposed to stop until Tuesday. It may be necessary but also depressing after the long brutal winter.

  18. Rosalie

    I’m in Texas and I have an invasion of four o’clocks! They have pretty pink sweet smelling flowers but then throw seeds which develops into more plants that have TUBERS- which are impossible to get rid of. I have even tried Roundup and searched the internet. Wish I knew this 10 years ago.

  19. Beryl Hoff in Montana

    Love seeing the kids working in the garden!! Are they neighbors? They will be excited when they see the leaves pop out of the ground!
    So glad I refrained from buying even one plant the other day! We had snow last night, covered my car over night but was gone when I got up. The pass has white ground again, the roads were good when I went into Helena today. More Johnny Jump Ups are blooming, they are so hardy and cheerful!! We have cool and rain for most of the next week. possible snow Wed and Thur. It is 33 now so will probably be in the upper 20’s tonight. The mountain tops are all white. Springtime in the Rockies!!
    I love seeing your beautiful chickens!
    Will keep Jessica in my prayers. So many with cancer.
    Thanks for taking time to share each day.

  20. Mrs. Goodneedle

    We were in your neck of the woods (sort of) Thursday and Friday, in Rock Island, IL (just across the river from IA😉) for a family funeral. When we arrived on Thursday PM it was 88 degrees in the Quad Cities! 😳 The storms that rolled in were swift and furious following that heat and Friday it was cool and very wet— God’s tears as we buried a beloved, favorite cousin. Your garden beds look wonderful and your little helpers are an inspiration. I love seeing the focus and determination on Reed’s face as he works to finish up his quilt; you’re a great teacher!

  21. Joanne

    Bittersweet and Japanese knotweed invasive in the New England. Went barefoot all the time.

  22. Connie R.

    I love that you are showing the young ones how to plant a garden. I fear that it will become a lost art soon with this tech generation. Everyone should experience the joy of planting seeds and seeing their garden grow.

    1. Betty Klosterman

      Out here the gradeschool kids are learning in school the art of planting gardens, taking care of them and eating the results of their efforts. Instead of the school landscaping, the plots are planted by the kids who are learning and having a great time working in the dirt. It is amazing how much a small plot can produce. In one housing area the neighbors got together and made a community garden. They have taken great pride in their produce and crime and vandelism is way down. We also have group of prisoners and the guards have been working with them in their BIG garden producing TONS of veggies to feed themselves plus the Mission and lots of other places where food is needed. And they are enjoying their endeavors, being outdoors and earning their keep in society. Isn’t it amazing what “playing” in the dirt can do for people?

      1. CountryThreads Post author

        Betty Klosterman – it truly is amazing how much produce can be grown on even a small plot of land and kids should know where food comes from – I love that the community is so involved in the gardening as well as the prisoners. What a simply great endeavor! Thanks, Betty!

  23. Felicia Hamlin

    Hawaiian Iris? I had planted that, it came back the year after and it disappeared on its own. That is my brown thumb at work! There are things that don’t work for me. Love the backing on Reed’s quilt, tell him hello, please.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Felicia Hamlin – he reads the comments but I’ll be sure to tell him.

  24. Andi

    Hi Mary!
    2 nice days in a row – you lucky duck! We have Measureable snow coming down today here in northern Wisconsin!! Somebody needs to turn off the snow machine. Oh, love seeing the kids in the garden in their bare feet – good old black dirt between the toes. Sigh – we will be able to plant maybe next month – – –
    Enjoy the good weather!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Andi – this is Tuesday – has it quit snowing? I hope so!

  25. Kate

    What sweet little friends to help you in the garden. I am still planting here in Indiana. Mostly flowers as I don’t put up any vegetables any longer and the tomato plants took over my flower garden last year, so not planting any near any flower beds. Your weather fluctuates as much as our does. A very rainy, cool day today and then it will get hot again. We are having some construction done on our house and it’s been hard for the workers to get anything done in this weather. Love seeing Reed so hard at work on his quilt. I really hope that boy gets a grand champion on his quilt at the fair.

  26. Linda Baker

    The chickens scratching around in the hay are great! My husband spread hay over our garden plot this year, to control the weeds. We have two or three turkeys who discovered it, and they’ll come daily to scratch through it. Clumps of hay fly in every direction! We just sit at the kitchen window and laugh (we’re easily amused). It won’t be so funny if they start scratching up the plants, lol!

  27. Jeanie Stufflebeam from sw Illinois

    I am sure Ella and Dawson had a wonderful time helping you with the garden; going barefoot is so much fun. I think the cat loves Ella as much as Ella loves it. Thanks for all the wonderful pictures, Mary.

  28. Candy

    I had a heck of a time finding “zombie weed” online … but I found plenty of sites talking about (selling?) marijuana… LOL! I’ve planted Bellflower in the past, but only in a flower box. I guess I won’t do that again! On the ‘wet coast’ we have a wild bush called Scotch broom. It has bright yellow flowers in the spring, is highly invasive, and is everywhere! It has to be removed while it’s blooming, so that it’s seed pods don’t spread more. We have groups who call themselves “Broombusters” who try to get rid of as much as they can each spring … but it’s hopeless! I was shocked to find it for sale at one of our biggest greenhouses!

  29. Lisa B

    One of many invasive plants in my area is Orange Hawkweed. Nothing kills it and it takes over an area very quickly. I live on an island and it is thought to of been brought in via the soil of another plant but I have seen it listed in packets of “assorted wild flowers.” The 5-7 seeds from the flowers attach to pant legs or boots and are transported to new areas. Locals with more plant knowledge have told me 1/4 inch root will grow.

  30. Diane in WI

    Mary, you mentioned the madras fabric that you sold a while back. I have some of it . The plaids are beautiful. I need it get it out and use it in one of the nine patch quilts. We have an abundance of crabgrass and a vey obnoxious plant called buckthorn. I believe it is used as a hedge in England. They can have it all back. I pull out any of the small plants when I see them. Reed is going to have a wonderful quilt. I think he’ll do well at the fair.

  31. Judith Ann Jaques

    May apple,wild ginger, perennial vinca,ribbon grass and strawberries all were invasive in my hosta garden. All were perfect! I THOUGHT when I first planted them. Just about any plant can get out of control. I had a small space in the host garden that got sun so made a raised bed and planted strawberries. The jumped the fence (well the runners escaped the surround) I have dug and given away strawberry plants but they just keep showing up. Planting up containers today with 2 flats of marigolds,1 flat wax begonias,coleus,zinnias and one lone dahlia. Planted the flat of red impatience. I have a small peony wall quilt, from Kathleen tracy’s sew along, ready to stitch the binding. My favorite part of quilt making.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Judith Ann Jacques – wow, that’s a lot of flowers to plant! The few I’d planted had to be covered last night because of cold temps. I’ve been watching the sewalong with K. Tracy and I love the little peony quilt! I hate binding – I wish you were my close friend! Ha!

  32. Paula N.

    Wondering if all that rain is what we got last Tuesday southwest of Houston. We got 12” in one afternoon and evening. Water came up to my back porch, which has never happened in the 28 years we’ve lived here. Many of my neighbors got water in their houses.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Paula N. – that’s a lot of rain! I’ll bet you were holding your breath, weren’t you? Yikes!

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