April 29, 2010

The Real Green Goddess

With temps now in the 80's nearly every day, the parsley was gasping it's dying breaths so I pulled it all out to make room for some warm weather herbs. But what to do with  all that green stuff? Here's the recipe for the green goddess dressing I'm making tonight. And don't smirk. This has a natural pale green coloring and a fresh, fresh, fresh spring- like flavor that's not at all like the neon - colored stuff that comes in a plastic bottle from the grocery store.
Green Goddess Dressing or Dip
DO NOT wuss- out on the anchovy paste. I'm serious. I promise it will not taste "fishy" and it does push the flavor over the top.

2 c. mayonaisse( I like Spectrum Canola)
1 c. sour cream
1 c. roughly chopped parsley leaves
1 c. sliced green onions
1/4 c. cider vinegar
1/4 c. lemon juice
2  T. anchovy paste
S & P to taste

Put mayo, parsley, scallions, vinegar and LJ in blender or food processor and whiz until the herbs are pulverized and color is a pretty pale green. It will take a minute ot two. Pour into a bowl and whisk in sour cream.  Serve as is for dipping. Add 2 T. water for a pourable consistancy for salad dressing.
Serve over iceburg wedges w/ crumbled bacon and hard- boiled eggs. Also good with fish. Yum.

More Spring Beauties

Who needs a florist when you have a garden full of these beauties. That's "Belinda's Dream" on the left and "Paul Neyron" at center with the fuschia colored petals.(He smells devine and would be excellent in the ice cream recipe from a previous post.) Filling in are "Copper Canyon Daisy" whose foliage has a delightful herbaceous scent, Scabiosa/ pincushion flower, "Lady in Red" Salvia, some tiny Cecile Brunner buds and lemon balm for a touch of green. I'm not much on formal arrangements but these flowers seem to arrange themselves in a natural way that pleases me very much.

 "Heritage" has finally come on like gang- busters in the past week. This David Austin rose is one of my favorites for it's delicious lemony scent, delicate pale pink coloring  and the round cup shape of her blossoms. In her second year, she is covered with sprays of large blooms with a large yellow center when she is full- blown. You see her in varied stages highlighted against a back drop of lavendar Gulf Coast Penstemon above..
And ta- da! This is "Buff Beauty" and boy, does she live up to her name. Gorgeous medium sized blooms open deep apricot and slowly fade over time to a pale ivory tinged with rosy peach tones. As a hybrid Musk, her scent is as deilghtful as her appearance. I have coveted her ever since I saw a photo of her covering an arbor smothered with blooms on Philip Poliver's blog "Dirt Therapy" several years ago . Splurged for her this spring and she is as beautiful in person as her photos. They say blooming will increase with age. Can't wait.

April 14, 2010

Evolution of a Garden

Here is an overview of how the garden looked this morning from the deck. The crazy color bed is at top and the cooler, pastel bed, below, featuring an orchid tree (Bauhinia lunariodes), at left and a baby arroyo sweetwood (Myrospermum sousanum) with the pom- pom of chartreuse leaves. The plant at the corner of the deck in the bottom photo is a dwarf Cara Cara orange. The leaves hanging into the upper right corner belong to a Xylosma (Xylosma congestum), one of my favorites.

Look at the xylosma when I planted them in Spring 2007. Notice that are no center beds yet.

April 13, 2010

Rose Parade

The roses in my garden are proudly parading all their beauty this week. Shown here is "Souvenir de la Malmaison" a spectacular Bourbon rose with a rich, spicy fragrance as large as it's lushly quartered blooms. She is new to my garden this year but still covered with big fat buds and blooms.Though she is a little more prone to blackspot than other old roses, what you see here on the leaves is oak pollen- an unpleasant rite of spring here in central Texas. This dust turns cars, decks, garbage cans- everything yellow for a few weeks every year. Achoo!
The justifiably popular but probably overused "Double Knockout" is looking dewy and radiant after a recent misty morning. Love the forest green leaves and velvety petals on this rose. New growth is a lovely maroon. You see it every where because it flourishes in our hot, dry summers like a true native. This was the plant than won me over to using reds in the garden. I always gravitated towards pinks and purple shades with a bit of yellow but she inspired me to using more hot colors and I'm liking the effect. In the bed with this rose is "Wyoming" canna with bright orange flowers and bronze foliage, fuschia "Pink Velour" crepe myrtle, "Red Velvet" Sage,orange bulbine, "Old Blush", lavendar Mexican Oregano and Texas sage, purple skullcap and a bright yellow copper canyon daisy.This will be the first year with all of it together so I'm interested to see how it all works (or doesn't).