30 September 2010

Sapling of Anne Frank's Chestnut Tree Arrives in Canada

Photo of white chestnut tree as seen from the attic of Anne Frank House in Amsterdam.  Photo taken 2007.
The tree that provided solace to Anne Frank lives on in young saplings that are to be planted in various destinations throughout the world (namely Europe, USA and Canada).  Montreal, Quebec is the sole city in our country (Canada) to receive a sapling.  Organizers said that only New York and Israel welcomed more holocaust survivors than Montreal.

Amsterdam's Anne Frank House museum germinated saplings with the intention of distributing them in honour of Anne Frank.  When lawyer Michael Vineberg learned of this he requested one be delivered to Montreal.  Veineberg helped found the Anne Frank Foundation in Canada.  11 other saplings were distributed to the United States.  The Montreal sapling was planted September 27, 2010 in the Peace Garden during a ceremony at the Holocaust Memorial Centre.

“The tree represented really her only link to the outside world,” Vineberg ... says of Frank’s time hiding from the Nazis in the annex of an Amsterdam home. “It represented the purity of nature and the continuity of life.”

The beloved chestnut tree in Amsterdam was written about in Anne Frank's diary.  She would often look out the attic window upon the tree.  She wrote she could always find happiness looking at the raindrops on its boughs and out at the sky.

The white chestnut tree blew down during a storm last month.  It had stood for 170 years before succumbing to disease and the wind storm.  The tree was on private property and had been protected against removal when it was found to be diseased by Support Anne Frank Tree Foundation.  The property owner, not the foundation nor Anne Frank House museum, decides whether to replace it.

Passages from Anne Frank's diary that reference the tree:

“23 February 1944”
“The two of us looked out at the blue sky, the bare chestnut tree glistening with dew, the seagulls and other birds glinting with silver as they swooped through the air, and we were so moved and entranced that we couldn’t speak. ”

“18 April 1944”
“April is glorious, not too hot and not too cold, with occasional light showers. Our chestnut tree is in leaf, and here and there you can already see a few small blossoms.”

“ 13 May 1944”
“Our chestnut tree is in full bloom. It’s covered with leaves and is even more beautiful than last year.”


Fall Planting - Horseradish

grown by Lorne Stodola of Fort McMurray
Horseradish is a perennial and should be planted in an area that doesn't get tilled each year for planting.  It benefits from full sun but will do ok in partial sun however it will grow slower.  Horseradish prefers a soil Ph of 5.5 to 7.  Plant in late fall, like garlic or onions, or plant in early spring.  It will grow about 24" tall and 18" wide.

How to plant horseradish plants:

Dig a hole twice the size of the rootball.  Keeping crown of plant level with your garden surface, fill in around the rootball.  Tamping down when finished to remove any airpockets.  Water well.  The plant may wilt for a few days following transplanting.  If it is very warm, try shading the plant while it adjusts.

How to plant horseradish roots:
Dig your hole as deep as the blade of your shovel and 1 foot across, loosening the soil in the bottom of the hole. Place root on a 45 degree angle with top of root just below the surface.  Refill the hole and mound up a couple inches.  Water well.

You may harvest late fall for spring planted horseradish or the following fall for autumn plantings.  Most pungent flavour is noted in one year old plants.  Once leaves have seen frost in the fall, the horseradish can be harvested and replanted.  You may use a section of the root for your recipes and the other sections, preferably 10" in length, may be replanted.
Using horseradish:
Grate or dice the horseradish root.  Once grated or diced, place in jar and cover with vinegar.  The longer you wait to add the vinegar, the hotter the horseradish.  For less hot horseradish, add the vinegar within 1-2 minutes of grating/dicing.  When grating, keep in mind the powerful odour of the horseradish and try to do it near an open window or outside.  Unused, ungrated horseradish may be kept in the fridge in a loose plastic bag to prevent the growing of leaves.
Recipe ideas: 
To serve with seafood, mix horseradish with chili sauce to taste.  For a chip dip, mix with sour cream.  It may be added to any mustard for a chip dip.  Serve grated with meats, ie. roast beef.  

28 September 2010

Watery Wednesday

Getting in the wet of things with Watery Wednesday: http://www.waterywednesday.blogspot.com/

Sapling from famous Anne Frank chestnut tree planted in Montreal

Sapling from famous Anne Frank chestnut tree planted in Montreal

Metro - Teens who got high on flower out of hospital

Metro - Teens who got high on flower out of hospital

It's crazy what some people will do. These teens, ages 11-15, ate the seeds of Angel's Trumpet (Datura) seeking a high. Angel's Trumpet, when ingested, causes pupil dilation, elevated heart rate and body temperature and aggressive behavior. It has been known to kill humans and animals who ingest this plant. While lovely to look at and stunning in the garden, Angel's Trumpet contains toxic alkaloids. Be aware and beware. The parents of five teens noticed a change in behavior and took them to the hospital. Three have been released and two are still hospitalized. See the news story link above.

Bloomin' Tuesday

Morden Blush Rose still blooming its heart out!

Join Ms. Green Thumb at http://msgreenthumbjean.blogspot.com/ for more Bloomin' Tuesday!

27 September 2010

Sky's Ablaze

I am up early, not unusual for me, and as I sit in the living room I see the white drapes bathed in a red glow.  The sky this morning is ablaze with the sunrise and it illuminates the house at 7am.  I managed one photo of the beauty.  Mornings like this you cannot help be grateful for all your blessings.  To be blessed to see such magnificance is a gift indeed.  Have a great day everyone!

Cheer in the Fall

One of my husband`s customers in Fort McMurray, Lorne Stodola, grew this enormous sunflower this summer and it just deserved posting.  (He also has a great horseradish patch to be posted at a later date.) Is there anything so cheerful as sunflowers, especially in the autumn?

A neighbour across the street from me grows a somewhat natural garden and has an immense clump of sunflowers in the front garden.

This sunflower was grown by my mom and step-dad (pictured here). 

26 September 2010

Straight Out of the Camera

Our city had at one time planted birch along the boulevards in many residential areas.  Which was fine initially because Edmonton once received more annual rainfall/moisture than it does of late.  The city got smart and replaced the dead and dying trees with burr oak.  Oak have a tap root which allows them to seek water deep within the soil whereas many trees have shallow roots which run parallel to the surface.  I took this photo last evening while enjoying a glorious autumn stroll.

Join Jan for Straight Out of the Camera here:  http://www.murrieta365.com/

BC Master Gardeners Newsletter

Follow the link to the BC Master Gardeners newsletter and you will find:
  • new species of fruit fly devastating fruit crops
  • how to propogate a rhododendron
  • square-foot gardening
  • and much more....
I came upon this newsletter happenstance while browsing Van Dusen Botanical Garden website.  Here's a link to their site:

I love the Van Dusen Botanical Gardens.  (See my post about Japanese Gardens and favorites at Bucket List posted September 25, 2010.)  It was here I first discovered lace cap hydrangeas in live form.  So amazingly beautiful, delicate yet stunning.

25 September 2010

Shadow Shot Sunday

Trost Dwarf Birch and shadow.

Visit http://heyharriet.blogspot.com/search/label/Shadow%20Shot%20Sunday to see more participants in Shadow Shot Sunday.

Bucket List

"Moonbridge" photo by Allan Bruce Zee
Portland Japanese Garden

"A Japanese garden is not only a place for the cultivation of trees and flowering shrubs, but one that provides secluded leisure, rest, repose, meditation, and sentimental pleasure...The Garden speaks to all the senses, not just to the mind alone."

—Professor Takuma Tono
Designer of the Portland Japanese Garden

The Friendship Bell,
Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden
Lethbridge Alberta
W.C. in photo
I was just reading a blog written by April Demas at Canadian Gardening Magazine online (http://www.canadiangardening.com/blog/2010/08/23/a-visit-to-nikka-yuko/) about the Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden in Lethbridge Alberta which brought me to remember my own visits there. It is serenity itself! I believe this is where I came to appreciate the intricacy of garden design and definitely fell in love with Japanese Gardens. My earliest memory of the garden was as a child strolling the pathways, peering into the pond and ringing the friendship bell. I have made several subsequent visits, each time equally enthralled with this small but serene and remarkable garden.

photo by David M. Cobb

If you get a chance, there are a few more noteworthy Japanese Gardens including and certainly not limited to Kurimoto Japanese Gardens at the Devonian Botanical Gardens, Devon, Alberta; Nitobe Memorial Garden at the UBC (British Columbia) – a must see for me; and the Portland Japanese Garden in Oregon – another one I just have to visit. Another favourite of mine, should you be in Vancouver in the future, is the Van Dusen Gardens! It is not a Japanese Garden per se but is a remarkable display of plants arranged by country of origin, including some of Asian origin.  This garden takes several hours for a photo happy writer, like myself, to navigate. It is an essential garden for the plant addict to visit.

photo by Donair Spencer
I visited the press release portion on Portland Japanese Garden site and accessed some fabulous information and photos. I am mesmerized.  A few years ago my family and I vacationed in Vancouver and Seattle making our way down the coast into Oregon but we didn't make it as far as Portland.  Happily I took in Van Dusen Gardens in Vancouver and another garden which shall remain nameless, simply because I cannot remember its name, in Seattle.  Hydrangeas, pampas grass,  rhododendrons, azaleas, and so much more to delight your senses!  Definitely on my bucket list are the Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island and Portland Japanese Gardens in Oregon.  Now,  I just have to get there!   

Anyone have suggestions on other must-see public gardens?  I have room on my bucket list.


24 September 2010

Weekend Reflections

For more lovely relections see: 

Ode to Trees

TREES by Joyce Kilmer (1886-1918)

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by people like me,
But only God can make a tree.



Schubert Chokecherry and Spruce
trees in Louisiana above and below (photo taken by my son Tyler)

Amur Cherry

Pine tree in Cold Lake

Ahh, the beauty of trees!

23 September 2010

Have a Seat.....Fertilizer Friday

On a walk about a month ago I saw this enchanting yard that beckoned me.  The garden seat of wrought iron (there's my love of wrought iron again) blends into the landscape, not at all obscuring the garden around it, which is one thing I love about the use of wrought iron.  It all seems so welcoming.
In my own backyard are my glider bench and stationary chair (far right) also in wrought iron.  A favourite place to sit and enjoy the pond, the garden and the firepit.  In the background is a small myriad of plants including Hakuro Nishiki Willow, Blue Oat Grass, Dwarf Chinese Juniper (groundcover and topiaried form) Three Flowered Maple, Tolleson`s Weeping Juniper, Mint Julep Juniper, and Water Iris (name forgotten).
Not much blooming anymore except my rose and clematis.  Writing this blog makes it necessary for me to get out and photograph my garden in progress and I find things lacking, like fall bloom!  But it does have pretty good bones, right?
Join the meme at:  http://www.tootsietime.com/

Skywatch Friday

I love to photograph the sky, particularly when trees are in the forefront.

To view other participants in the SkyWatch Friday meme: http://skyley.blogspot.com/

17 Top Trees and Shrubs for Adding Fall Color to Your Yard

17 Top Trees and Shrubs for Adding Fall Color to Your Yard

View a slideshow of 17 trees and shrubs for zones 2-7 that will bring vibrant fall colour to your garden.

Something cute.....

My husband came across this sign and knew I'd enjoy it.  Thought I'd share it with you.  Hope it makes you smile, it did me.  Have a great day!

New Trends in Outdoor Living

Architect's rendering of Enjoy Centre

There's something new and exciting happening in neighboring St. Albert, Alberta.  The Enjoy Centre is scheduled to open November 2010;  bringing to the public, in one location, a new experience in shopping, living and entertaining.

"From the first day we started dreaming about this project and the magnitude of its possibilities, we imagined the Enjoy Centre as a partnership."

–Bill Hole
Aerial photograph of Enjoy Centre

Aerial rendering of Enjoy Centre

"As the lead partner in the Enjoy Centre, Hole’s is excited to continue its traditions of great quality and service while expanding the concept of gardening to reflect a broader, more modern view of living. Decorating and entertaining, growing and replenishing, personalizing and enjoying—everything you need to create a lifestyle about you."

Other partners in the Enjoy Centre include The Water Garden Spa, Terra Cafe & Artisan Bakery, and a conference centre perfect for weddings and other large events.  They are looking for more partners.  (info@holesonline.com)

Some new and exciting items you can expect to see in the near future:

Solar-powered LED lights

For a peak at what's coming in the way of new trends in outdoor living see this blog:
http://spogagafa.blog.co.uk/ .  

Rectangular Bistro Set  and new grill (unique design)

Gardeners and homeowners alike are looking forward to the opening of Enjoy Centre.  It offers sustainability in function, unique design and new trends in products. A new lifestyle experience.  Something to look forward to.  Will more centres follow this model?  That is yet to be seen but wouldn't it be "a good thing"?  As Martha Stewart would say.  Ahem.


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