When your hydrangeas are larger than your car! And hydrangeas color.

When your hydrangeas are larger than your car!

Well, I do drive a Fiat 500!

This is Hydrangea Incrediball! Some are as large as a soccer ball! (Hydrangea arborescens ‘Abetwo’ INCREDIBALL)

This is Endless Summer Blushing Bride: no longer on the market but produces pale shades of bluish or pinkish flowers. (Hydrangea macrophylla Blushing Bride®)

And both together in the border along the front of the house.

Most hydrangeas are influenced by the soil Ph as to the color of the flower: acid, or low Ph, soil will produce blue flowers and alkaline, or high Ph soils , will produce pink flowers. If the Ph is neutral the flower may be purple or a blend of pink and blue! The exception is a white hydrangeas will always be white! 

A native species is Hydrangea quercifolia, commonly known as oakleaf hydrangea or oak-leaved hydrangea, produce spike-like flowers which open white in the spring and fade to pink than brown by Summer. The plants are very large (6 feet) and wide (8 feet) but there are dwarfs and newer reddish flowered varieties.

A beautiful native plant.

The Southern Magnolias are blooming with large, fragrant flowers. A Southern classic on large trees with bronze foliage.

It’s Summer!!


Filed under General Gardening

Blueberry jam

Re-blogging because….you know… its blueberry season!!

Arthur in the Garden.

I found myself Thursday walking around the NC Farmer’s Market in Raleigh. I was amazed the market was just as packed and busy as if it was a weekend.

Luckily, Blueberry season is in and it gave me an idea! I had purchased a box of fruit pectin on a whim of making strawberry jam but never got around to it during the season. Blueberries would make a fine jam, too. Two pints of organic blueberries were $5.00 so it sounded like a good idea and I have never made jam before. It was an amazingly quick process!


1) Wash the Blueberries and remove any stems.


2) Mash the Blueberries with a potato masher. I left some whole.


3) Add the sugar, mix well and allow them to sit for half-an-hour to overnight.


4) In the meantime, add the fruit pectin to water and bring it to a boil.


5) Boil for about half an hour, stirring…

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Filed under General Gardening

Sunday walk through town… and tour of Capital 

Everyday begins with an iced mocha latte at Cup A Joe on Hillsborough Street. Reading the Sunday paper and coupon clipping while people watching or chatting to those we know.

We walked down Hillsborough Street along North Carolina State University. NCSU was founded on March 7, 1887 by the Morrill Act of 1862, which allowed the U.S. government to donate federally owned land to the states for the purpose of establishing colleges that would teach “agriculture and the mechanic arts.”

There are still a few classic houses which have not been replaced by businesses in the University District.

We stopped in for lunch at David’s Dumpling and Noodle Bar. We had…

Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce

Edamame & Mushroom Dumplings

Soft Shell Crab with Seaweed Salad

And they always begin with carrot and ginger soup

After eating, we continued our walk down to the Historic Fayetteville Street District. Looking South from the Capitol you see the performing arts center, Maymandi Center, and other arts and performing venues.

And government buildings,

The NC Department of Insurance -Albemarle Building

SECU -State Employees Credit Union Building 

First Presbyterian Church of Raleigh, 1900

Confederate Monument – He is looking West … to the sunset….

First Baptist Church, 1859

North Carolina Veterans Monument – I heard her name is Tobaccolandia and she is holding up a tobacco leaf.

South view of the Capitol – Canova’s Statue of Washington, (1910)

And after all this walking and playing tourist we had to walk back to the car so we need a snack. 

We stop by the Raleigh French Bakery-

So much to choose……..I want it all!


Filed under General Gardening