Fall Means Mums

 What is Fall without mums? At least that is how I feel. I just can't picture my yard without mums gracing it during the Fall. Out here in California, I have found that the mums actually bloom twice a year, once in spring and then again during the autumn.

Have you ever noticed the variety of mums that you can choose from? There are yellow, orange, purple, pink, white, fuchsia, red and various shades of autumn colors; single or double blooms in a variety of showy flower heads. 

Did you know? Mums are photo-sensitive and form flower buds when the length of daylight starts to shorten (usually late July). If you plant them under a streetlight or lamppost they may never set buds.
Mums received from a florist tend to be less hardy and take longer to bloom than most garden variety mums and should be planted earlier in the season to avoid killing frosts.

The mums in these pictures were here when we bought this place in 2003! We rarely ever get a killing frost here, so the mums just keep growing and growing from year to year. Late mums put on a great show in areas where frost does not arrive until late November.

To help mums develop more bud-bearing stems, pinch back the growing tips twice -- once in late spring and again in early July. Be careful not to pinch mums any later, or they will not have a chance to develop flower buds on time.

Mums need a constant supply of nutrients to make strong, steady growth. Sprinkle Vigoro® All Purpose Plant Food with timed-release nutrients into the soil around the plants and then mulch over the area.

In midsummer, after you have pinched back your plants for the last time, give them a "booster feeding". Pull back the mulch, sprinkle fertilizer onto the soil around the plants and replace the mulch. This feeding will provide the plants with ample nutrients to support heavy flowering and will help insure deep rooting which in turn enhances winter hardiness and resistance to drought.

Have you ever planted mums? If so, what is your favorite variety or color?

New Kitchen Chair Pads


 This is actually darker than it shows here.
Friday, my new kitchen chair pads arrived. We were getting tired of sitting on hard wooden chairs while enjoying our meals.
I was hoping the brick red that I ordered would go with my kitchen and I was so relieved when I opened the box up and noticed that they matched my kitchen tile exactly! Now, we just have to get used to feeling taller while sitting at the table. :0) 


Baby Poncho


It took awhile, as I have so many other things to tend to during the day, but I finished the baby poncho I was knitting. It was sent on its way earlier this week with the matching hat that I finished earlier.  

It did not call for buttons but I found some really cute ones at Walmart that I just had to use! It also did not call for an edging but I thought it would look nice. So, I crocheted an edging around the perimeter of the poncho.  

 Overall, I was happy with it being the first time I made a poncho, but when I make another one, there are a few things I would do differently. I would definitely make it wider! To me I would like it to drape down the arms more. So, I believe I will be making a size larger the next time I decide to make one. 

Happy Stitching! 

Celebrating One Year

Sarah & Kalaya at 1 year collage 
Where does the time go? Today, my granddaughter Kalaya turns a year old. I can't believe it! I know it partly has to do with living on opposite sides of the country from each other, but it just does not seem like a whole year ago, I was in Connecticut awaiting word on her birth in Virginia.  It also, does not seem all that long ago that my daughter Sarah, her mom, had her first birthday! Treasure these moments, as they fly by!
It was a rough go for two weeks after her birth but many prayers were said and answered and she is now a thriving one year old.
Kalaya being silly (says Danielle) 10-6-09 
Happy Birthday sweetheart! Gram loves you bunches!!!
Kalaya's birthday cake 10-4-09