French Laundry gardens

We celebrated my friend's 40th birthday with lunch at the French Laundry last Sunday. It was a wonderful day.


Before lunch, I went into the garden and took some photos of their produce.  Here are the garden photos to whet your appetite for the food photos.


It was lovely walking around and seeing all the different varieties of vegetables that we were going to eat.   Lots of color and different shapes and sizes.  I particularly loved all the different sizes and color of the eggplant/aubergine, and the long pointy tomatoes.


Food photos up next! Such creativity.
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July Harvest


I bought my husband a new collapsible bucket this week.  I know - how romantic can I get?  I was really tempted with the lime green one - but that is my favorite color, so I got him the blue one - as that's his favorite color! Only seemed right!!



The reason for the purchase - (in addition to my loving him :-D) - was that we do a lot of harvesting of fruits and veggies in our garden,  and we have big things to collect fruit in but not really anything nice for smaller harvests.  So if we are picking a whole tree of apples, that's fine - or 12 trees of olives or loads of grapes...no problem but just a few items tended to go in a horrid old red bucket.  But no longer!



The new collapsible blue bucket  now comes to the rescue and it got its first use this week! And it did a fine job.

We put in some:
kale
padrone peppers - these are my 2013 new favorite food
green figs
black figs
peaches and
apricots

What a colorful harvest.

I'm so happy to have an early fig harvest this year. Some years we only get them in the fall but we've had quite a few July figs this year and it looks like an amazing number will ripen for the fall.  We will definitely be figged out! Glad family will be staying with us to help us out.



What did you harvest this week?


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Take time to smell the flowers on Fridays

How long is it since you've sat on the lawn and made a daisy chain?


I hope its not too long....and maybe if it is, you'll find time this year to do just that...whether by yourself or with someone else.



I remember sitting with my sister making them when we were little - but I always got frustrated as she had nails and so could split the stems, but I used to bite my nails so couldn't ever do it!


I think with these large daisies in the photos from our garden, even without nails, I'd have been able to do it!  And think what a great big chain I could have made!


These daisies have multiplied so much. I hardly remember us having any before - but this year, they seem to just be happy showing their smiling faces to the sunshine.



I have some friends coming round for lunch tomorrow so I have some daisies for the table and also some in the napkin rings.  Don't think we'll be making daisy chains however....but you never know!!!


Did you take time to stop and smell the flowers this week?  Spending time in nature is good for our health, so how about planning a daisy chain party this year?  Invite a few friends around, sit on the lawn, chatting and making pretty little daisy chains! If you do - please invite me. I'd love to join in. :-D
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Take time to smell the "flowers on Friday"

Taking time to stop, look at, and smell flowers is something I love to do...and right now, every time I go in the bathroom, the sight of this wonderful rhododendron plant through the window just stops me in my tracks.  It is so beautiful and full of flowers!  It just catches your eye and you have to stop and be amazed!


We have a few bushes, all different colors, but this one below is at its peak right now.




The others are lovely shades of pinks, purples and reds, and across from the rhododendrons are azaleas - also full of blooms this time of year!

What a stunning blaze of color.




So I'm going to start a 'flowers on Friday' blog post, making sure that some time of my week is spent actually wandering around the garden and enjoying all that nature has to offer.


It started last week with the peonies, and this week rhododendrons.....what will be up next week?


I hope you have found the time to  stop and admire nature this week...if not, how about today? It will lift your spirits and provide a little snippet of relaxation.  A wonderful moment in your day.

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I love the fall

Along with our grape harvest, we are harvesting other fruits and vegetables every day too.  Here is what we've picked this week:

Cherry tomatoes by the ton!

Godello grapes, rescued before stomping began!

John's prize home grown watermelon!


My favorite fruit - fresh green figs with jammy red centers!

I just love this time of year!

We still have apples and pears in the fridge, lots of quince on the tree and veggies on their way.....

What are you harvesting or enjoying in season right now?
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Quentin Quail and family

Look how busy it's been in our garden this spring and summer! We've had a few California Quail families and such cute little babes! Hope you like the photos:







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