Friday, July 28, 2023

Meadow Plants

Summer!  July is a great time to take a walk in the field, in the meadow. How many plants grow and bloom there. In ancient times, people used some of these plants for food, for treatment and harvested for the winter. I took a few photos, especially I liked the flowering of the well-known Fireweed and the fragrant Meadowsweet plants.

Fireweed  (Chamerion angustifolium). Other names are Narrow-leaf Fireweed, Willow Herb, Ivan-tea.


Fireweed is a showy, clustered perennial, typically growing 0.5 to 2 meters (1–5 ft) tall. The erect stems are usually reddish, with numerous elongated alternate leaves and ending in a tapering spike of pink-purple flowers. Fireweed is a sun-loving plant that quickly forms dense colored masses. It blooms in the second half of the summer period, while the duration of flowering is a little more than 4 weeks.

Among all herbaceous plants growing in the forest, in the meadow, fireweed is considered the best honey plant. Fireweed leaves can be brewed as a tea. This tea has a very fragrant and rich taste.

Meadowsweet (Filipendula ulmaria), or meadwort, is a perennial herbaceous plant that grows in damp meadows. Other names are: pride of the meadow, meadow-wort, meadow queen, lady of the meadow, dollof, meadsweet, and bridewort.

Meadowsweet has a very long history of herbal use, and it was one of the three most sacred herbs of the ancient Druids.
It contains chemicals called salicylates, which are similar to aspirin. It's an attractive plant, ideal for growing in damp soil and boggy areas, such as the edge of a pond.  Filipendula ulmaria blooms have a strong, sweet scent.  



Are these meadow plants familiar to you? How do you use their beneficial properties? Are you fond of walking in the meadow, in the field, in the forest? Thank you.


Wednesday, July 19, 2023

July In My Garden

We are in July. This is the second month of summer, which in Russia is called the “top of summer”. In general, nature develops according to its own rules and laws. In my garden, these laws of nature are fully respected.


Sometimes I wonder how plants survive despite the conditions we humans put them in. Last year apple tree was transplanted to another place, while its roots were damaged. Now I see small leaves on its branches, they show that the tree has taken new roots and lives on.

Two years ago, I decided to transplant the peonies to another sunny spot in the garden. They were sick for a long time and did not bloom, but now I was  glad to see white, pink and red peonies in June. 

Unlike overcoming plants, delphiniums spread their seeds in all directions of the garden. At the same time, the color of the new delphiniums is different. Why?

I am glad that the new varieties of roses can withstand heavy rain very well. Their heads do not droop under the weight of drops, the roses are cheerful.


The vegetables that were sown in May are already partially eaten, so I sowed new seeds of arugula and Berlin head lettuce. Cucumbers grow well, they cling to the ropes with their tendrils, and stretch upwards. Tomatoes are getting larger.

Apple and plum trees ripen on fruit trees. Black and red currants, raspberries are poured with juice. I love them very much to eat and also freeze them.

I wish you a happy and successful July.

My friends have birthdays in July, congratulations to you all!

My video: Wonderful Wesley Gardens, UK

Sunday, July 9, 2023


Cucumbers are climbers that naturally grow in subtropical climates. Over time, varieties of cucumbers for greenhouses and for open ground appeared. As climbing plants they can be grown on vertical supports. This means that they take up very little space on the ground, which is useful in greenhouses.


Some years ago greenhouses became very popular and many gardeners got growing cucumbers. It's believed that the best cucumber should be dense and crispy, and also tasty when pickled.
I started growing cucumbers 10 years ago. It seemed to me that growing them is much easier than tomatoes or zucchini. To do this, I ordered a greenhouse, it was assembled in the garden. It was a small greenhouse, which was later converted into another, larger one.

Cucumbers have tendrils with which they cling to a rope. I made supports during landing: ropes, their antennae can wrap around a rope. They cannot cling to flat surfaces. The stems must be tied up and twisted around the rope too, especially when they are loaded with fruit.


But this is not enough, because the plants and cucumbers are heavy and need to be wrapped with rope as they grow. To find out which way to turn, you need to look at the tendrils: they twist clockwise around the rope. So I twist the climber clockwise around the rope.


The first cucumbers in the greenhouse appear on the lower branches of the plant. The greenhouse varieties are all-female producing almost exclusively flowers with a tiny fruit behind them. They are non-pollinated plants and grow quickly in a greenhouse. After 7-8 days, such a fruit can be cut and eaten.

With greenhouse cucumbers, I always pinch out the growing point when it reaches the greenhouse roof.


Outdoor cucumber plants produce both male and female flowers. The female flowers need to be pollinated in order to produce fruit, so I don’t remove the male flowers.

I usually plant different varieties of cucumber - pollinated and non-pollinated. Pollinated varieties produce fruit later, but there are more cucumbers on these plants and they produce fruit longer, until autumn.

Here is  the first  harvest:


Do you grow cucumbers? Do you love them fresh or salty? Do you use them in salads or in hot dishes?