Grams of the Week – June 20

Here’s a recap of the best instagrams of last week. If you want the day to day follow me here!

watercolor

I went to a free watercolor class this week at the library here in Rockaway. They  have many free classes. Check them out!

Serviceberry-Tree

Your looking at a serviceberry tree in my front yard! Delicious for the birds as well as you. This tree thrives in our costal zone. Edible gardens are beautiful and useful!

oak-hydrangea

More garden photos. This is an Oak  hydrangea which can grow six feet tall. Since last year, mine has already grown about 7 inches higher. The cone flowers are superb.

porch

#porchlife in full swing.

 

 

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European Natives Appearing in Rockaway Beach

Sweet William* (Dianthus Barbatus) is a hearty perennial flower used as an ornamental in gardens. It originated in southern Europe, spread through Asia and somehow made it to Rockaway. If you look around the neighborhood, you may start to notice the red, white, purple and/or pink floral in your neighbor’s garden.

The first spring my husband and I had the house (2014), we were in the midst of a hellish renovation. (I’ll have to fill you in on that epic project at some point.) The front garden was far down on the to-do list. I sprinkled wildflower seeds in the garden beds that year, to add some beauty in the interim. In that package were seeds for Sweet William. Since that first spring, the flower has been reappearing every year.

flowers-garden-rockaway

There are a several advantages for planting Sweet William in your garden. First off, this plant thrives on the peninsula. The perennial likes sandy soil, can grow in sun or part shade and doesn’t require much water. If you deadhead them, the flower will re-bloom all summer. Another benefit is their longevity. They’re perfect to use in floral arrangements. They live almost two weeks in the house after cutting them!  Don’t clip them all though! Sweet William is a favorite among the birds, bees and butterflies, who love to feed on the nectar of this plant. So expect beautiful creatures flying in your garden.

Sweet-William

Lastly, and most exciting, you can eat it. (Weekly readers may note my obsession with uncommon edibles.) The taste is sweet at first, then turns bitter. I like to use the flower as a garnish in cocktails. If you happen to be day drinking and playing around in the garden (which is my favorite pastime) you can put a few flowers in your drink to look less like a degenerate for drinking alone. When I’m actually drinking with other people and entertaining, I’ll also use the flower of Sweet William in drinks. It’s a classy touch that impresses the guests.

Look out for Sweet William now, it should be blooming this week.

*The origins of the  common Sweet William unknown and debated.

Grams of the Week – June 5

Here’s a recap of the best instagrams of last week. If you want the day to day follow me here!

cuisine-by-claudette

Cuisine by Claudette’s coffee is so so good.

Ridgewood-Queens

I’ve been packing up the rest of my life at the studio in Ridgewood. It’s a weird feeling for sure. This is the RD (roof deck) that I used to spend a lot of time on, gardening.

friends

I spent sometime on Long Island this weekend hanging out with my friends. Good times! Thanks for the cowboy hats Tara!

stray-cats-Rockaway

Here’s Obama having a lazy sunday, as I did.

 

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Grams of the Week – May 23

Here’s a recap of the best instagrams of last week. If you want the day to day follow me here!

The-Wave-Newspaper

I wrote about my cat in The Wave this week. Is that nepotism?

yellow-woodsorrel

Yellow woodsorrel (Oxalis stricta) is labeled a weed but it’s beautiful. I’m letting it grow in my garden. And it’s edible:

All parts of the plant are edible, with a distinct tangy flavor (common to all plants in the genus Oxalis). However, it should only be eaten in small quantities, since oxalic acid can bind up the body’s supply of calcium.

The leaves and flowers of the plant are sometimes added to salads for decoration and flavoring. These can also be chewed raw (along with other parts of the plant, but not the root) as a thirst-quencher. The green pods are pleasant raw, having a juicy crisp texture and a tartness similar to rhubarb in flavor.

The leaves can be used to make a flavored drink that is similar in taste to lemonade, and the whole plant can be brewed as herbal tea that has an aroma somewhat like that of cooked green beans.

The juices of the plant have been extracted from its greens as a substitute to common vinegar. via wikipedia

The-Wild-Yaks

Kicked off the first night at Low Tide  last friday night with The Wild Yaks!!

south-ozone-park

I spotted this lion in a pink tutu while running some errands in deep Queens this past week. Ozone Park never fails. Also of note, the plastic dinosaurs on the fence.

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