Monthly Archives: June 2014

When old becomes new…

Isn’t if funny when something which has been around for quite some suddenly become new and hip to the in crowd?

Pabst Blue Ribbon is one of those things. The hipsters have brought it back into vogue and everyone is drinking it. They have renamed it PBR for short and a favorite way to drink it is called a PomBR which is pomegranate juice and PBR. First thought is eww but it actually works out !

A PomBR and a How do you Q?  are enjoying the patio at The Borough (Raleigh, NC) on the corner of Dawson and Morgan Street!


Meanwhile, in the garden the daylilies are still going strong with the wild, orange blooms everywhere! I have a ton of these in the garden.



And Black-eyed Susans



And more daylilies.



With temps around 90 I would say Summer is in full swing!!



Filed under General Gardening


I was a slacker last Fall and didn’t removed the old stems on the old-fashioned hydrangeas. All the plants I have came from one which was behind the garden shed when I purchased the house. These are the old-fashioned type (Hydrangea macrophylla) which blooms on two year old wood.

Therefore, each Fall I remove the old limbs which have bloomed to allow room for the current season’s growth which will bloom the following season.

The exceptions in my hydrangea collection would be the pinkish Blushing Bride near the front porch, which is a rebloomer in the Endless Summer strain, and the Increadiball (Hydrangea arborescens) which blooms on new wood and has large white flowers. It is of the species known as smooth leaved hydrangea.

I also have a Tardiva which is a paniculata species (Hydrangea paniculata ‘Tardiva’) which is commonly called tree hydrangea or panicle hydrangea because of the large size of the plant and the shape of the flower. It blooms late in the season near Fall.

Today, I removed the many dead branches and the flowers from last season with help from Gus.

I will take cuttings to fill five or six pots which should be well rooted by the Fall.

The plants are now cleaner looking and will be loaded with blooms in a few weeks!


The hedge along the North side of the house is between the parking area and the chimney in part-shade. The red brick makes the perfect backdrop! Since we have acid soil here the flowers are blue. If the soil was alkaline they would pink. Neutral soil would produce a blend of pink and blue which looks purplish!


They are just beginning to turn blue and by July will be a deep blue.


And in the evening they seem to glow!


Now, if I could only encourage a climbing hydrangea to survive our hot summer!




Filed under General Gardening

Homemade salsa verde with baked barbecue potato chips

Ok. I Improvised with this recipe. I had tomatillos, lemon, and basil – in desperate times I had to make do!

Tomatillos are really unusual! They look like a green tomato in a paper husk. The taste is similar to a green tomato, too! They grow on low, bushy plants and along with cilantro, lime juice, onion, and garlic are used to make classic salsa verde.


Arthur’s salsa verde with baked barbecue potato chips

2 – tomatillos
4 – cloves of garlic
2 – lemons for juice
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 cups basil leaves
A few snips from the chives in the garden
Baked barbecue potato chips from Aldi

Easy instructions: place ingredients in the blender and pulse until you have the consistently you like.

I did not have any tortillas, or even pita chips, so I made due with baked barbecue potato chips which I had on hand. The hot and sweet spicy chips were a great complement to tomatillo’s flavor.


The sharp, tart flavor of the tomatillo is balanced with the sweetness of basil to create a sweet/tart flavor.

Yes. My taste are unusual…



Filed under cooking, Food