Wednesday, October 21, 2020


 It was bound to happen sooner or later.  In my opinion we've had a wonderful fall.  This is our first snow of the year.  Nasturtiums are still blooming in the hangers on the porch.  The willows are sagging already and I don't think it's snowed that much?   Brrrr!  It is supposed to warm up a bit, enough to grab the last of the seed from the garden.  (Fingers crossed)

I went west yesterday, to the Ram Falls area.  My goal was to find delphinium 👍, and what I think is Pulsatilla occidentalis, chalice flower. and gravel 👍.    I had found this seed last time I went this way, a couple years ago... yes it's been that long since I did that road.  I grew that seed out and I have a pot of them to go in the garden.  

Whether you go up or down it, at a seed hunter's pace, it's a whole day trip.  And you don't want to do that road with tires that are wearing down, I was there!

I really didn't stop until I got to the Ram Falls area, got the seed I wanted, and then came home.  

There are straight stretches, and then there are the drop off curves and winding loose gravel roads.  A wonderful sunny day.

It is so beautiful no matter what time of year you go.

 Ram River.

Another beautiful spot.

I thought I saw a bear, but it was a 'wild' cow.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

 Happy Birthday Beautiful Blooms. The company is officially 19 years of age, (actually older, but today was the day I registered the company and made everything official). Yay! WooHoo. Kind of anticlimactic, just not feeling all that excited about it. No announcements, no giveaways...... I'll chalk it up to 2020. Pandemic aside it's been a challenging year. This year 'they' decided to spray a good many of my seed harvesting spots. I'm probably the only one who knows this, but the ditches 'round here are freaking loaded with amazing plants, Loaded! What they didn't spray, they mowed right down to nothing.

This was full of blueberries, strawberries, geum, wood lilies, paint brush, meadowsweet, anticlea, and so much more. All of it mowed to nothing, all the saplings, all of it. On the other side were the raspberries and gentians. It's so curious how growth differs on either side. The raspberry side was sprayed. Yes, I understand the 'logic' behind it. No, I don't understand the 'logic' behind it. Is there not a better way? Do we continue to poison our home, does anyone give a rat's ass? 

I thought I had taken pics of the carnage up Shunda View Point road, maybe I couldn't. All the way up to the Park boundary is sprayed. It's blatantly obvious that 'they' sprayed at will. It makes me want to hurl. There were hundreds, maybe thousands of wood lilies in those areas. I'm not exaggerating! Over the years, I have stood in awe of the incredible abundance of wild flowers up at Shunda.  There are pockets of pedicularis that take your breath away when you wander across them in full bloom.  What will next year be like?  The loggers didn't seem to take a break, great they're working but... below is the view from my turn out at Shunda.  
Pretty much the same view, taken Sept. 23, '20.  Doesn't look so bad now.  Mom Nature has a way.

Ya know I get it, the money, the economy, we build shit out of wood, I do get it, but I don't have to like it.  No one has sat down and figured out a better way?  Or maybe they have and been squashed?  Argh!  This has been such a challenging year for so many.  I know I'm not alone in what I've been thinking.  I'm grateful to not have a TV and to not watch news in any way, little blurbs still creep in and I'm shocked & shaken.  Back to the woods.  But my woods have been destroyed this year....  I think the topper was, going to see about beaked hazelnut and I come across a construction crew just before the turnoff.  It's a normally slow day so I ask the flag person what's up?  They're putting in a guard rail!  Hmmm, this brings to mind many questions, the first being WHY?  See just ahead is my hill, the hill that has hundreds of lady slipper orchids and so much more.  I drove through, parked and collected what I could find, yes, I found a decent quantity of beaked hazelnut.  I haven't gone back yet to see what they've done to my hill of orchids.  I feel so defeated this year.  And no, they're not protecting them, they sprayed all the orchids coming up my hill to where I live!

I have people from universities and conservation groups asking where I get my seed from, implying with their words that they are concerned that I'm cleaning out an endangered plant, wreaking havoc on the wild and generally up to no good.  Do you know that when I turn over my seed, each year, last years seed usually goes back to where it was harvested from, or sown in my back 40.  I encouraged the mealy primrose on Hwy 12 for 3-4 years before I felt it was safe to harvest seed from.  This year I had to give the mower a time out signal in order to try and get some seed from that same primrose before they mowed it down!  So WTF!  Ohmmmm 

I've lived here for 5 1/2 years and have wandered a lot.  No matter where I stop and walk, I always find something.  Clearwater County is abundantly rich in native plants, that they spray, cover, mow down.
I shall keep collecting, sowing, nourishing, loving my little section of the planet.  This is what I do, this is my passion, I believe in what I do.  We have to make the planet greener, stop and smell the roses, walk through a forest, walk barefoot, lean into the wind at Windy Point.  💗

A customer said to me today - "I am excited to see what next year will look like now!"  
That gives me hope.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

My thoughts on Social Media

When Facebook first came out, I was NOT the first one to jump on that bandwagon. I'm really not a bandwagon trending kinda gal in fact. But I succumbed and I'm the first to admit that I wasted hours, days, weeks on FB. I saw other businesses on it, trying to gain exposure, sales, be competitive.... Over the past year I've been censored on three occasions, each time sharing info on herbal remedies, vitamin therapy, and da da da vaccines. Now don't get your knickers in a bunch, I said that word, vaccines........ I'm not an anti-vaxxer, don't start slingin' shit, I'm a pro-truth, pro-information, pro-access to information, pro-right to make your own decisions. I don't like that FB has taken it upon themselves to censor anything. I get that they make a bazillion $ on adverts from pharmaceutical companies, and if that gives them the right to censor what I post, then, see ya later. I have a lot of thoughts on social media, what I see it doing to the population worldwide, the control that the masses are giving to it. I'm not willing to be part of that matrix for a couple of seed sales. So I've closed and deleted my two FB accounts, Beautiful Blooms and LindaLu Magoo. Still on Instagram, so far. If you want to follow me, fill your boots. I don't post a lot and all you'll get from me now is flower pics and my craft. Linda, Beautiful Blooms and LindaLu Magoo

Friday, May 15, 2020

Spring Bliss or Gardening with a stick

Warning, this blog will probably be all over the place.......

I had to laugh when I found this. This is in the new raised bed, it's obviously a bulb, and marked with a stick. I know myself well enough to know that when I stuck in that stick, I had said to myself that I would know exactly what this was in the spring. I would remember for sure, maybe I even wrote it down in one of my numerous gardening diary's. I'm looking at it now completely clueless. Wait and see, like I have a choice. Surprise.   

The new raised bed was created kinda last minute at the end of a miserable gardening season, 2019. I had built it and my neighbor saw it and said, do you want that filled? Yes please! I had been given a trunk load of strawberry plants, had the wood, would find the dirt. If you build it.... ha ha. I didn't get to putting in all the strawberries, as I said, last year was a miserable year. They sat in their 4x4 pots on the ground all winter, for the most part under several feet of snow. Still Alive! Woo Hoo. I love strawberries but refuse to buy them due to pesticide use, now I'll have all I can eat. It will be nice to share them with my neighbors as well. :)

Why I hang onto my pots for a couple of years.
Yes, starting from seed is painstaking, tedious, and not for the impatient. Aah but the rewards. I had sunk a couple of pots into the new raised bed, and they were slated to be composted this spring. I had no expectations.

I am very pleased (tickled right pink, beside myself even) to see that I have growth in the pots. Some aquilegias from seed exchanges that I had my fingers crossed on. Arnica cordifolia has germinated, one I really want to get established in the yard. On the Arnica, I live fairly close to several large colonies of this wonderous plant but I would really like it in the yard to harvest for ointment. I infused arnica flowers in coconut oil last year and it really does work for aches and pains.

One of the perks of living here is that when spring arrives, IT ARRIVES.  Everything wakes up very quickly, it has to, we have such a short season.  It can be difficult to keep up with it, this year is different.  I'm enjoying having all this time in the garden. ;) 

Monday, March 23, 2020

What are you doing?

What are you doing during this insanity?
I'm watching cows doing yoga, horse leading a donkey, donkey following a horse, (not captured in this photo from my plant room window, but I can assure you, I have witnessed these things)

the multitude of wonderful birds visiting my suet feeder, giving a bird a bath,

having a dance party with another bird,

making candied ginger,

lamenting that I'm out of Coconut Chai Latte tea,

reading The Wildcrafting Brewer by Pascal Bauder,

reading Destiny of Souls by Michael Newton Ph.D.,

cranking the tunes and dancing like a wild woman, (no picture for that) checking on seedlings and losing my shit when I discover that a-hole mouse got my last Mimosa seedling, sewing, cross stitch,

(This is a Teresa Wentzler cross stitch done on linen. I started this close to two decades ago, I pulled it out in the last month and am telling myself to do just a bit every day. I do want to finish it, frame it and hang it on my wall. Probably the most intricate piece I've ever taken on.)

(Two shawls; Il Glicine by Linda Allegra using James C. Brett's Northern Lights & Cozy Moments by Carmen Jorissen of New Leaf Designs using a Caron Cotton Cake. And lastly working on a pair of wool boot liners which is taking way to long to complete... plugging away at them.)

crocheting, shuffling stuff, throwing out stuff, and most of all just trying to stay sane. I'm not sure I'm succeeding at the sanity part, the fact that I'm working on a dozen things only proves how incredibly unsettled I am by what is going down.

I'm visiting my past by watching all 8 seasons of Star Trek Next Generation, it's kinda comforting. Finding some of the episodes hilarious, were they that funny then?

Saturday, February 29, 2020

Mango Madness

Well, I'm not very good at blogging on a regular basis. I think I have things to say and then that negative Nelly in my head takes over and says nope, no one wants to hear your rantings about seeds.

Tough, I'm going to rant about seeds!

I love trying to start seeds that I have no business trying to start. Seeds that even if I get them to germinate, will not grow here. Yet, I still keep trying.
Avocado's are easy, one just has to be patient, they do take well over a month before they crack and send out either a root or a leaf. I now have 3 avocado 'trees' growing in the plant room. They'll stay there until they perish or I get my glass house to grow them in. (Wishful thinking)

My latest attempts have been on mango seeds.

After soaking the seed for a couple of days, with daily scraping off of flesh, using a paring knife or fingernail. These were taken January 30, 2020. As soon as I cut away the flesh holding the seed together it popped open. These seeds really want to grow.

This picture was taken February 5, 2020. I lay the seed on a moist cloth, placed it in a container (a plastic container that had mushrooms in it), and placed all of that in a clear plastic bag. Does it matter whether it is in dark or light, I don't think so. I do think that warmth is a factor. I wouldn't put this in the fridge and expect anything, this was placed on a shelf out of the way, room temperature.

I accidentally broke the root when placing it on the coir, oops. Has not seemed to slow it down.
I planted it in coir (coconut husk) on February 19, 2020. My previous attempts at planting in dirt failed shortly after planting. I had buried the seed and hoped that a leaf shoot would make it to the top. After failing 3 times, I thought, I'll try it this way and see what happens. Ta da! Success. I do think that cleaning off the seed as much as possible is important, you don't want any mango flesh to start rotting and going moldy. They don't smell overly pleasant anyway so adding to that is probably not a great idea.

This picture was taken on February 26, 2020. Cool, I have a mango tree. :) As it grows I will update this blog.

Two more seeds cleaned off and placed in a container on February 19, 2020. I can't help it, it's a seed.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Birds

I love spring, well who doesn't, but sometimes I think parts of it are just for me.
The birds of prey are back.  I play count the birds (of prey) every time I leave the house.  Just today there were 7 on the way to work and 8 on the way home.  Odds are good I was counting the same birds but there are really no rules to the game.  I see the two big red tailed hawks sitting in the stands of poplar along Hwy 12 after Medicine River.  Sometimes I see them in the act of the hunt, hovering in the air ready to dive.  Phones are not my distraction while driving!
Cranes are back, I see them flying overhead, always an odd number, their massive wings effortlessly slicing through the air.
The geese, my favorites are everywhere.  I haven't seen large flocks arriving back, but there are a couple in this field, a few in that field, a couple in the beaver pond and other ponds and wet lands.
As I was driving to work on Easter Monday, just past the mailboxes, I saw something out of the corner of eye.  Always on watch for deer or moose around here, I looked out the car window and not 10' from me were 2 geese flying.  They were almost parallel to my drivers window for about half a km.  They stayed low to go under the power lines still just over the ditch.  Wow, I was in an absolute state of bliss!  I lost sight of them as I went around the corner to go down the hill, but I'm sure that tiny wonderous event was put on just for me.  What a great way to start the day.🌞