Tag: Denton County Master Gardener Class (Page 2 of 4)

Texas Tulips Visit

Yesterday the Denton County Master Gardeners Association visited the Texas-Tulips Field.  There were over 80 of us!  We first listened to the owner tell the story of how he and his family came to the Dallas area from The Netherlands.  We also learned how to grow tulips in this area of Texas.


The tulip field was so beautiful.  Bill & I had visited it last year when Aunt June was here for a brief visit.  But each year is a totally new experience, as there are over 90 varieties planted and they replant the whole field each year with new, different varieties.

I learned that growing tulips here is quite a process.  For the homeowner, if you want to save your tulips from year to year, you have to first wait about 6 weeks after the blooms die away to dig the bulbs up.  Then you keep them warm and dry (about 70 degrees) until early-to-mid September.  Then you refrigerate them for 6 weeks.  THEN you plant them.  If you don’t do this process, the likelihood is very high that the bulbs will not bloom again the next year.  Your other option is to just buy new tulip bulbs each fall to refrigerate and then plant.

It all sounds expensive and/or labor/time intensive to me.  So I’ve decided to forgo growing tulips in Texas and just plan to visit Texas-Tulips each spring!



As usual, I took a lot of pictures!


Maybe you can tell – I love the centers of the flowers as much as, if not more than, the outsides of the tulips.  There were also a lot of bees busy pollinating the tulips.  I wonder if tulip honey is extra sweet?

Pollination in Action

Bee pollinating the tulip.


It was a very breezy day (when isn’t it?), plus the tulips were definitely following the sunshine.  Here’s standing on the west side of the row:








And here’s standing on the east side:









I think this may be my favorite picture:

My Favorite Yellow Tulip








Or maybe this one?

My Favorite Pink Tulip


Which do you think?  Yellow?  Or Pink?


Weekly Overview 03.06.17

Outside My Window… the wind is blowing all the Bradford pear blossoms off the tree.

I am thinking… that outside work planned for this afternoon will have to wait until Thursday, due to the wind. Raking leaves and spraying water doesn’t work very well when it’s windy.

I am thankful for… energy & focus this morning, even with only four hours of sleep last night.

From the kitchen… mashed avocado is thawing so I can make the creamy avocado salad dressing that I’ve been thinking about since last night, when I couldn’t sleep!

I am hoping… that the sunny weather promised for Wednesday holds, as having a tulip farm tour would not be nearly as much fun in the rain.

I am reading… 

  • The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America, 1858-1919 by Douglas Brinkley
  • The Horse Whisperer by Nicholas Evans for the 100 Bestsellers List challenge
  • Three Sisters, Three Queens (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels #8) by Philippa Gregory

I am busy creating… a Rippling Waves afghan for a niece.

I am hearing… “Manana” by Jimmy Buffet on Pandora

Around the house & garden… We put up curtain rods over the archways between the front hallway and the office. Curtains have been ordered (brick red) but in the meantime we’re using the teal curtains from upstairs. Bill plans on have several late night sessions of work in the next few weeks and we’re hoping this will allow David & I to sleep while he is working.

In other news… I decided to quit my job as remote admin to HelpUBuy America. It was an interesting job, but the amount of pay I was making wasn’t really the aggravation of having to keep watching my email continually. Plus, I can see that Master Gardener program is going to keep me busy and will be something that I can enjoy AND also meet people. Making friends would be a novel idea. February 28th was my last official day.

One of my favorite things… flowers – all sorts, shapes, and colors. I have snapdragons in blossom right now. They’ve been in the garden for two years now, wintering over and surviving through the heat of the summer. I had more, but in a fit of whatever last fall, I pulled a bunch, thinking they were not doing well and that I’d make space for some crocus bulbs. I’d forgotten that the snapdragons perk up in the early spring – and the crocus bulbs never did anything.

Our Weekly Overview… 

Monday: Bill works from home. David works. I’m doing odds and ends, knocking things off my to do list. Laundry, sweeping floors, cleaning toilets, writing blog posts, catching up my books read list and book challenge lists (which I shall post about later in the week), and food prep for lunch. I even tried a new Creamy Avocado Dressing recipe this noon for my salad – it needs a bit of modifying. Or maybe it just needed following the recipe exactly, but I didn’t have everything the recipe called for! It was pretty good, in any case, and I’ll be making it again with some slight changes.

Tuesday: Bill works from home. David has the day off (it’s the first day of his “weekend”) and he will be going to the new local coffee shop and picking up some more coffee beans, plus making his Massaman Curry to take in to the management pot luck lunch on Wednesday. I have Master Gardener class – this week we will be doing hands-on plant propagation activities.

Wednesday:Bill works from home. David has the day off (the second day of his “weekend”) and will be taking his Massaman Curry in to work for lunch. I am going on a Tulip Tour at the Texas-Tulips Farm with the Master Gardeners in the morning and then I’ll be back home in the afternoon to continue working on taxes, which I started working on last Friday.

Thursday: Bill works from home. David works. I will take Copper in early (7:45 a.m.) to the vet for her semi-annual checkup, plus dental cleaning, which means they will keep her for most of the day and call me when she’s ready to pick up. I’ll continue working on taxes and, if the weather is nice, maybe mow some more yard and clean the pool filters.

Friday:Bill works in the a.m. and has the afternoon off for a doctor’s appointment (follow-up on semi-annual bloodwork), although I’m hearing rumblings that the work schedule may mean I have to change his appointment to another day next week. Bill is scheduled to do some overnight work (overtime pay!) for a client, the window of opportunity for the work being 9 p.m. Friday – 6 a.m. Saturday. David will be working. I’ll be trying to finish up what I didn’t get done earlier in the week – hopefully that means finishing taxes – and also I’ll have MG homework and the week’s test to take.

Saturday & Sunday:Bill will be sleeping late, so I’ll be doing quiet things around the house, maybe run some errands, get groceries, etc. David will be working. I’m not sure what the weather is going to be, but it would be nice to get my greens bed cleaned up and ready to plant to flowers. Copper has been using it this winter, so I’m not going to plant greens in it until this fall. In the meantime, I think it will make a great cut flowers bed! I just have to block it off again like I did last year so Copper can’t get into it, and hope that Bill will eventually get the time to make me the screened cover he bought supplies for last fall. Sunday is race day – California, I think – so that means sleeping late, napping in front of the TV, crocheting, and just generally resting.

Here are some picture thoughts I am sharing …

I made these Butterfly Fingerless Gloves last month for Kat & Fiona. I think I’m going to make me a pair – not sure I’ll wear them in public, but they look cool and might be fun to wear while I’m working on the computer.


Weekly Overview 02.20.17

Outside My Window… it is overcast and dreary, just like the last two Mondays!  We had wind and rain overnight, but we’re promised sunshine and warm weather starting this afternoon.  We shall see.  I have a good crop of dandelions growing in my yard, though.  A lawn care salesman stopped by last week and tried to sell Bill his services, pointing out our huge crop of dandelions.  He seemed a bit taken aback when Bill announced we liked our dandelions!

I am thinking… it’s going to be a busy week, but hopefully as productive as last week!

I am thankful for… getting the Christmas tree stowed away in the attic over the weekend.  AND the start of the 2017 NASCAR race season.  I do love our Sunday afternoons of race watching, with Bill napping and me crocheting.

From the kitchen… dishes are piled in the sink and nothing is planned for supper.  I made the guys bbq pork ribs yesterday and baked sweet potatoes and made a topping of black beans, tomatoes & kale for myself.  There was plenty of leftovers, so no cooking will be needed tonight.

I am hoping… that the paintings I shipped to my brother last Wednesday arrive tomorrow undamaged.  My grandmother painted them and they are irreplaceable.  I did take photos of them before I sent them off, as I plan to order wall canvases of some of them for myself.  Eventually I would like to take pictures of all the paintings that various family members have and then make them available to all family members.  Here’s a photo of the painting she made for me as a teen, maybe for a birthday?  More likely for a high school graduation gift.

Apple Blossom Lane oil by Mabel A Gibson

I am reading… The Immortal Irishman: The Irish Revolutionary Who Became an American Hero by Timothy Egan (for the 2017 European Reading Challenge).  I have 30 pages left to read, it’s due back to the library on Wednesday, and I cannot renew it again.  I may have to pay some fines on this book.  I’m still reading The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America, 1858-1919 by Douglas Brinkley.  I’ll be starting One Child by David Nicholls tonight – it’s the next book on our 100 Bestsellers List challenge.

I am busy creating… a Rippling Waves afghan for a niece.  It’s coming along nicely, don’t you think?

I am hearing… the Irish and Celtic Music Podcast, specifically the February 16, 2017 episode “2-Hour Best Celtic Music Retrospective.”

Around the house & garden… the houseplants I treated for mealy bugs survived the treatment.  I don’t see any new evidence of mealy bugs, but I’m keeping an eye on them.  This coming weekend I plan to take down the winter/holiday floral arrangements and break out spring flowers.  I’ll probably have to make a trek to Hobby Lobby at some point to buy some new flowers, as I’ve added some new vases / containers since last spring.

In other news…  David finished his taxes last week, February 15th.  He was quite pleased with himself that he got them done by the deadline.  I pointed out that the deadline was actually April 15th.  We were all amused.  He was slated to get a rather large refund, so he bought himself another monitor like the one he bought last December, and passed his old monitors along to me.  So I have new-to-me monitors, slightly larger and newer than my old ones.

One of my favorite things… pictures of granddaughters.  Charles bought a new car last month and was given a couple of hats by the salesman.  Liana has taken to those hats, won’t go anywhere without one of them on.  She’s so cute.  And she knows it, too!


Our Weekly Overview… 

Monday: Bill working from home.  David is at work.  I’ve been writing book reviews, crocheting, and writing blog posts.  As soon as I finish this post, I’m headed to town to get some groceries and ship a birthday package to my mom.

Tuesday: Bill works from home.  David is off work.  I’ll be at my Master Gardener class from 9 – 4.  This week’s lesson is on Turf, with a mini-lunch session on How To Sharpen Your Garden Tools.

Wednesday: Bill works from home.  David is off work (but probably has a Manager’s meeting to attend at noon).  I’ll have MG homework and Quarterly Invoicing (paid work), plus the ever-present Quicken.  With Bill’s help, I was able to get our mortgage refinance entry in correctly last Friday.  I’m down to just double checking a few entries and 2016 will be complete..

Thursday: Bill works from home.  David is at work.  I have a MG SWAt meeting in Denton from 9:30 – 11:30.  In the afternoon I’ll tackle whatever paid work has come up and hopefully be able to get ready to start taxes on Friday.

Friday: Bill works from home.  David is at work.  I will have MG reading to do and hopefully get started on taxes.  It would be nice to have them finished in February, a novel idea!

SaturdaySunday:  David works.  Bill & I need to do some outside things, if the weather is nice.  The pool desperately needs cleaning (we didn’t get it cleaned last weekend or the weekend before!).  I need to clean up my raised bed and get that ready for planting greens.  And I’m sure we’ll have a lawn to mow if the weather stays as warm as is forecasted.

Here are some picture thoughts I am sharing …

Coffee Coasters!

These are just some of the 24 coasters I made.  Some will be gifts, others we will use ourselves.  They were a lot of fun to make.

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