GardenGrrl's WunderBlog

Bonsai

By: GardenGrrl, 3:50 PM GMT on April 29, 2007

Heck or high water (which came later in the week) I made it to the Bonsai convention being put on by the Dallas Bonsai Society in ofcourse, Dallas. The bonsai display of their best trees was Wow! If you have always liked pictures of bonsai or been impressed by the cute little trees sold at garden centers, you absolutly have to put on your "to do list before you die", go see a true to the art Bonsai-Exibition. Photos do no justice to what these amazing works of art look like in real life. Some of the display trees were quite old and have passed to more than one artist/caregiver. And many trees are actually quite large at over 30inches tall with trunk diameters from 4 to 6 inches perfectly set in clay/ceramic trays only a few inches deep. All trained over the years to have this flow and balance of what a perfect and beautiful tree looks like in nature. If you love photos of mature bonsai, seeing them in real life is almost a religious experience. Here are some bonsai FAQs; The word Bonsai in Japenese means "Tree in a tray". There is no such thing as an actual "breed" of bonsai tree. They are all regular trees like elms, maples, cedars, pines etc., that have been carefully trained to stay small and thrive in tiny pots. The trees seem to like it because in Japan, some families have the same tree passed down through many generations like a priceless heirloom. Most bonsai trees must be grown outdoors all year round because they are actual outdoor trees. (Which is why that little juniper you got at the mall and put in the kitchen window croaked.) Bonsai's are only brought indoors for a few days at a time to be displayed. Big Thanks to Dallas Bonsai Society for sharing their treasures.

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SkyWarn Classes and plumbing...

By: GardenGrrl, 5:20 AM GMT on April 27, 2007

Busy week. Tuesday was quite the weather day in North Texas. I'm glad I went to the SkyWarn class because it's nice to be able to tell the difference between SLC's (scary looking clouds) and ones that say "take shelter now!" I'm probably preaching to the choir here, but if you haven't gone to a SkyWarn class and live in a tornado prone area, you really need to check one out. The national weather service posts class schedules on their website and they are free to the public. Thats enough for the soap box sermon today. While there was lots of flashflooding in areas around North Texas Tuesday, all the water flooding my house was from the water heater which developed a nice big hole in the bottom of it. Couldn't do much tuesday except wet-vac inside the house, rent a dehumidifier and then wander up and down the aisles of Lowes and Home-Depot with my friend and boon companion complaining bitterly about the design flaws on this water heater installation and thinking up engineering solutions for the new one we put in...as soon as it stops raining...Because the water heater is only accessible from outside. Another one of the "little" flaws was no isolation valves. Had to shut off water to the house at the meter. Boy, it does not take long to miss having running water in the appropriate places in ones home. There were a few other little things, like piping that had staples in it under the house...which when pulled out from the pipe being moved caused another smaller flood. But as of late this afternoon and a special parts run to Denton, we have a (knock on wood) working water heater and no leaks (again knock on wood). And, our muddy clothes could finally go in the washing machine. So we lived happily ever after.

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No good deed goes unpunished lol

By: GardenGrrl, 7:30 PM GMT on April 20, 2007

Thanks to everyone for their suggestions on putting images in my blog. When my brain re-coagulates from the mush it's turned into I'll have a go at it. This past week I cut my vacation to the Hill Country short in order to fill in on the night shift because of a tragedy in one of my co-workers family. Nights don't agree with me. I concluded the last shift with an early morning visit to the doctor who said I had a nasty ear and upper respiratory infection needed some antibiotics and rest. WAAAAh! The weather outside is fabulous, my garden beckons AND the Dallas Bonsai Society is having a convention. There are two types of people in the world, the "performers", these are the folks that feel passionate enough about something to join groups and do something to present their creations of love to the world,and of course slackers like me who are the "audience". My joy in life doesn't come so much from creating things myself, as it does from experiencing the fun and beauty other people pour their hearts into and show to the world. Which is why I am bummed about not going to the first day of the Bonsai Convention today. I went to the Dallas Bonsai Societies auction last fall and just thought they were the neatest group of folks you could ever meet. And judging by what they brought to the auction, quite talented too. According to the convention schedule posted on their website they were going to put out a display of their best trees that they've grown. I really want to see that. Hopefully I'll feel better tomorrow and will be admiring cool bonsai trees instead of posting feverish rants. :)

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Question...

By: GardenGrrl, 4:33 AM GMT on April 19, 2007

How do you put photos and other pictorial stuff in your blog? Eventually I will arrive kicking and screaming into the new millinium. :)

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Big News!

By: GardenGrrl, 10:45 AM GMT on April 15, 2007

Just this afternoon I heard on a local Hill-Country radio station, that a shipment of hamsters has arrived at the Burnet Pet Shop in Burnet, Texas. They have every thing you'll need to outfit the furry little critters, but hurry because they go fast. If that doesn't just make you fall in love with the Great State of Texas, then maybe you need to plan an April vacation in the Hill-Country. You'll see wild weather, wildflowers, wild eagles, good food and lots of roadside stops that sell yummy things made out of pecans and sugar. Got home early this morning from my Hill Country vacation. Amazing rolling fields of bluebonnets dotted with prickly pear cactus, accented with outcrops of pink granite boulders then tastefully sprinkled with indian paint brush, coreopsis and other spring blooming wildflowers. Mile after mile of beautiful scenery that looks so perfectly planned that when you get to the next small town you want to go right over to the chamber of commerce and ask for the name of whoever did such a breathtaking job of landscaping along their roads. And if you already know, well, you just kind of feel a lot of gratitude.

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Hey! It's Cold!

By: GardenGrrl, 12:18 AM GMT on April 07, 2007

Okay, who ordered the Canadian Arctic blast for Easter weekend? My kitchen is filled with large potted tomatoe plants. They smell kind of good though. This year I decided to try those "plant spa" pots with the resivior that waters from the bottom up. So far they are earning their keep. The bush on the "Better Boy" just barely fit through the back door, and the tomatoes will miss the freeze. Hope everyones crops/gardens do okay through this.

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Hummingbirds are Back!!!

By: GardenGrrl, 4:02 PM GMT on April 06, 2007

The hummers are back! I've counted three different birds so far. They are all black chin hummingbirds. One is an absolutely gorgeous male. He is huge, well feathered and has what looks like a little red bow-tie on his throat. Have been trying to get pictures. Now I have the utmost respect for wildlife photographers. Nothing promotes the need for ibuprofen and a hot bath like sitting completely still holding a camera focused on area you want to get a shot from and waiting, and waiting.....I have one blurry picture from the feeder. The camera battery died just as the little bird was perfectly posed gathering necter from a towering purple larkspur being shot at from a very uncomfortable angle that framed it in blue sky. Good thing these aren't parrots, he would have learned phrases that would make a sailor proud. Stay tuned for further adventures in wildlife photgraphy. Someday, there may even be a picture.

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Gardengrrl likes being outside and watching "Sky-TV"

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