Wednesday, August 5, 2009


It's summer in our little city. You wouldn't know it by the temperatures -- it feels more like June or perhaps even late May.

But my basil is looking good.

And the little hosta garden my friend Kate planted in my back yard is, too. (That was my best deal ever -- I bought her gardening services at a charity Auction in February and she delivered with lots of perennials for front and back!

The farm markets are looking good, too.
I love supporting the local/regional farmers, and it is great fun to see others carefully picking and choosing their veggies.

I loved this sunflower merchant and bought enough for a bouquet.

They are pollen free and not supposed to drop bits of yellow pollen on the table. So far, so good.

Sometimes when I see bouquets like the ones below I wonder why they are so expensive. Then I think about my luck growing flowers and that thought flies from my mind!

Apart from the basil, my own veggies aren't faring so well. My pepper is about the size of a ping pong ball.
I have one -- count 'em -- one yellow grape tomato (and you don't want to see the pix of the others, most of which look like large, green marbles, with only a lone red one to give me hope). (Note: I am pre-posting this before I leave for a mini-vacation, from which I return soon! I hope I have a few red ones by the time you read this!)
Only the banana peppers are thriving.
This rose is OK.
And my hanging basket is still hanging in there.
But overall, it's disappointing.
After a wonderful summer dinner on an unseasonably cool summer night last week (We enjoyed fabulous salmon, potatoes, corn and blueberry pie), Rick and I decided to go to our favorite cafe to play scrable, listen to music and have a cuppa. To our chagrin and despair, we discovered it had closed (alongside one of our favorite "nice" restaurants, which had ominous notes on the door in legalese about payments not being made).

We opted for a place we'd not been. It was almost like a study hall -- our game was one of the more lively, interactive activities (but it was very nice and we'll probably go back). Rick beat me by 100 points, but I had more complicated words. He played smarter, though. Oh, well.

But the really sad thing was that on the way home, we passed by one of the oldest car dealerships in Lansing -- an Oldsmobile dealership (Oldsmobile was invented here and until the brand was discontinued, operated from here). It, too, had closed.

That really brought home our sad economy to me. This place lasted through everything; it was an institution. Gone.

How long can this one go on?


Jen of A2eatwrite said...

It is, indeed, a sad time for Michigan, and yet there are glimmers of hope. I feel cautiously optimistic for our entrepreneurial spirit, our burgeoning food industry (in terms of small farmers and new products) and our fledgling film industry.

I have exactly the same luck as you with gardening - my tomatoes never seem to bloom, but my peppers hit a bit later in the season.

Oh said...

Jeanie, we've noticed the same thing not only in pockets of suburbia here in STL but also on our trip down south and back.

Hope springs eternal.
I sometimes don't want to look but hopefully we can all reinvent as we go along. I don't know.

(btw, loved the banana pepper pictures! they look like little characters.)

Sugar Bear said...

We have seen the closure of a lot of stores here as well. So sad. I almost want to cry when I see it - I think about the people's dreams and how sad they must be.

On a lighter note - I love the gardener auction idea! I need that!


beth said...

damn this many things by us closing, too...

at least your garden and the market look happy !

joyce said...

The gardener auction is a great idea...and a lovely way for someone to contribute their talent. Don't despair, none of those veggies would grown here, our growing season is so short the only things we can grow are root veggies & peas/beans.

The recession won't last forever, it is getting better laready here in canada, you guys won't be far behind!

Janet said...

I wish you could send me some of your cool weather and I'd send you some of our hot weather and we would both be happy!

The economy is very sad. So many big businesses closing down and even more small ones. I wonder where it will all end.

PS - I haven't fallen off the edge of the earth! Just haven't been around much lately.

BONNIE K said...

I love your hosta garden! And your rose is just beautiful. I don't know anyone who has done well with tomatoes this summer. Guess what? I picked our one spear of broccoli today and used it in an appetizer. I was very impressed with myself...

Joanne Huffman said...

I have been enjoying this cool summer, even though I know it's problematical for gardeners (The economy is certainly not growing as quickly as I wish it would, either). I'm currently in Phoenix and it's been 110, which is not meant for humans.

Linda said...

It's about 100 in Houston! I think we have to shop to help the economy...that's what THEY keep telling us.

jet1960 said...

Think your garden plants look great. I only just tried to start some herbs after failing to buy plants while they were still available here. Some are doing OK, while others are not. The basil is off to a promising start. Hope to make some pesto to put up in the freezer if it does well.

Sad to see businesses close like that!

Popular Posts