Tuesday, September 29, 2009

ABC (Almost) Wednesday: K

It's almost Wednesday once again, and this week we have come to the letter K, a challenging one for my usual gardening references.

I suppose I could show you my Knockout Roses, which have finally begun to bloom again after surviving an attack by sawflies early in the season and the voracious munching of Japanese beetles the rest of the summer. But the photo isn't that good--any sunlight seems to turn these deep red blooms into a fluorescent pink in a photograph. But this is the only flower in my garden that begins with the letter K.

The operative K word around here the last few days has been Kerchoo, but I don't think my red nose or a pile of used Kleenexes would be particularly appealing. And, since I am getting better anyway, let's turn to some other areas for appropriate K words.

What is more appealing than a cute Kitten? This is Jessie, an orphan at the Humane Society where my granddaughter and I volunteer several times a month. I am happy to say that when Granddaughter and I returned to the shelter yesterday, Jessie had already been adopted.

As had Willow, a bloodhound mix, and her brothers. Puppies never stay long at the shelter, which has a high rate of adoption. With a face like this, who could resist this sweetie? The hardest part of volunteering for both of us is not coming home each week with a new pet:) If you are considering adopting a pet, think about adopting an older pet. They are the ones who stay the longest at the shelter, yet they offer so many advantages over mischievous kittens and puppies.

Speaking of mischievous puppies . . . this brings me to another joy in my life, Kids, specifically, Grandkids. All of the grandkids love to come to Grandma's house, especially to visit with Sophie. Even though littlest Grandson looks a bit hesitant here, he has learned how to say "No" to Sophie and enjoys her sloppy puppy kisses.

And while we're on the subject of Sophie, I have never mentioned one of her proud accomplishments. We have attended three different sessions of dog training since April, and in early August Sophie received her AKC Canine Good Citizen Award. This is a national test, comprised of several different areas which must all be performed satisfactorily in one test session. The Canine Good Citizen means that Sophie responds to various commands, such as "sit," "stay," and "come," and treats strangers and other dogs politely. I am very proud of her; however, the test did not include avoiding chewing up pens, ripping up carpet, or unstuffing stuffed animals. I guess there's only so much a girl can learn at one time:)

K is also for Kindness. One of the benefits of blogging has been getting to know so many wonderful people here. Garden bloggers, in particular, are always willing to share not only their knowledge of plants and techniques, but also in many cases the bounty of their gardens. Last week I was thrilled to receive a package in the mail from Gail, who knew I had admired her "Perfectly Pink Phlox Pilosa" for a long time. These little plants may not look like much right now, but next summer I'm hoping for a glorious show of pink blooms in my Butterfly & Friends garden, along with a few Penstemon X and Iris Cristata, also sent by Gail.

I've mentioned in other posts about some of the seeds I've received from other bloggers. But I've neglected to mention some other goodies shared by garden bloggers, including several starts of Cinnamon Fern, given to me by Lisa of Greenbow earlier this summer, as well as some Siberian Iris sent by Marnie this past spring. And just a few weeks ago, Tatyana, who I've only recently gotten to know, kindly sent me foxglove seeds and some seeds from her gorgeous red poppies. Monica, who actually visited my garden while I was away in Oregon, also gave me a lovely chocolate Joe Pye weed that is the perfect addition to my Butterfly Garden. Thank you to all of you for sharing these with me and making my garden a more beautiful place.

How beautiful a day can be
When kindness touches it!
--George Elliston

For more views of the letter K, visit the ABC blog, hosted by Mrs. Nesbitt.


  1. How do you resist taking all those gorgeous kitties and puppies home?

  2. Nothing could be more appealing than the kitten..... oh alright then, the dogs too..... oh ok and the grandson.
    Well the flowers didn't seem to get a looking this time round! LOL!

  3. Wonderful selection of K words for the day! Love the kittens and the puppies!

    Thanks for sharing!


  4. I have knockout roses too...same color as yours...
    So nice that you and your granddaughter volunteer together ...kindness is the best K...

  5. Oh my gosh! I LOVE that kitten! It is so sweet. I have been in such a mood to snuggle with a kitty lately : )
    Thank you for volunteering like that! So lovely!

  6. I have thought of volunteering at the Pet Port here but I am a big chicken. Those wonderful dogs. UGH.. I am afraid I would end up with a house fullll of them. It is such a good cause though. Thank you for the link love.

  7. You are right, there aren't many flowers that start with a K. There's Kalanchoe, but it is more of a house plant in our zone. Or you could plant a Golden Raintree, which is Koelreuteria paniculata.

    I am glad you didn't post about your kold, and I hope you are feeling better now. There is too much to do in the fall garden to be sicK now!

  8. Whew, you really came up with a lot of K words. Cute puppies and kittens but the best is the grandKids...They are the very best.

  9. What a lovely K post today. You did fantastically on a difficult letter. I enjoyed it all. And your advice on adopting older animals is right on. That is what we do-much easier than housebreaking a puppy. Both of our older goldens were housebroken. And congrats to Sophie on her good citizenship award.

  10. K is a tough one, but you did a great job! I also just got over a cold; I hate the back-to-school bugs!

  11. Congratulations on the Canine Good Citizen award. That is a major accomplishment, for both the dog & the handler.

  12. How lovely that you and your granddaughter volunteer together, and what a wonderful cause. I agree, adopting an older animal can work out very well.

  13. Enjoyed your post, - loved your photos. What a great selection of K's, and all of them adorable.

  14. Surely an inspiring post with enjoyable photos!

  15. Sophie and the grandkids sound like a perfect match. Must be very hard not to adopt a new pet every week when you're around so many cute one.

  16. Thoroughly enjoyed reading this today. Lots of great K words, especially the grandKIDS and KINDNESS. :D

  17. Rose,

    Take care of yourself--colds are no fun!

    Congratulations to Sophie on her achievements. You must give her some credit with her chewing habit--at least it's not your Knockout Roses!

  18. Some great 'K's there, and the kindness of bloggers I certainly know about. Some great communities around here.

  19. The Kitten was a Knockout - not to mention the roses! :-)

  20. I'm a kitten guy, myself, though the roses are lovely.

  21. Lovely photos Rose! I like your namesake! All those animals are adorable and let's not forget your grandson! Thanks for sharing.

  22. Rose, for such a tough letter, you did very well in coming up with a variety of words.

    I know how much your granddaughter appreciates the time you spend with her at the shelter. A wonderful way to spend time together. All the grands are tickled by Sophie-another kindness for them from you to provide such a lover and friend.

  23. Rose girl I love seeing another "Sophie" even if she is a doggie ? haha .. I too have "Chocolate" Joe Pye and I know you are going to love "him" ! .. I am in a rush or I would comment on everything girl .. you know I can be chatty ? LOL
    Perfect Wednesday Post : )
    PS .. YES ! I loved seeing that sweet kitten .. I'm so glad these little ones are adopted and a BIG yes to the older pets finding homes too : )

  24. These are lovely "k" words and thoughts Rose. I have thought of volunteering at a shelter for animals but I'm afraid I would want to bring them all home with me.

  25. Mara, it's not easy!

    Maggie May, Sometimes there's more to life than flowers:)

    Sylvia K, it's hard to resist those sweet faces, isn't it?

    Carol, I agree!

    Life, I know where you can find a kitten:)

    Lisa, These ferns have just settled in so well; I love them!

    Carol, Don't remind me of the time crunch; I'm already going into panic mode.

    photowannabe, I agree the Grandkids are the best thing about getting older.

    Tina, I didn't follow my own advice when getting Sophie. But our previous dog was 9 years old when we got him from the shelter. He is responsible for my being a dog lover today.

  26. Rose, There's something about this time of year and "bugs." If it's not a cold, it's allergies. Feeling much better today, though.

    MMD, I learned dog training is as much about training the handler as the dog:)

    Sweet Bay, It was granddaughter's idea, and she needed a mentor. A win-win situation for us both, as I get to spend lots of quality time with her as well.

    Hildred and Charles, Thank you; I'll be by later to visit!

    Tumblewords, Thank you! I always love to show off my Grandkids and my puppy.

    Janie, I did some research before getting Sophie. My #1 criteria was having a dog that was good around kids.

    Leslie, Thanks; this world could use a little more kindness, couldn't it?

    MG, I am feeling better, so at least it wasn't the flu. Sophie actually help me yesterday in the garden--I'm digging up grass for a new flowerbed. She's really good at that:)

    Anthony, I am always touched by the kindness and the positive thoughts of all the bloggers I read.

    Magiceye, Thank you!

    RuneE, Very "Klever" of you:)

    Roger, Kitten's claws are not as sharp as roses' thorns:)

    Reader Wil, Grandson is indeed a cutie; thank you.

    Beckie,Spending time at the shelter has also given me lots of one-on-one time with Granddaughter and with Grandson occasionally. That's the best part.

    Joy, Thanks, I know the Joe Pye Weed is going to fit right in. As for the kittens, they always find a home. And I'm surprised how many of the older ones do, too. I've been tempted, but I'm not sure Toby is ready for another housemate:)

    Susie, You don't know how many times I have been tempted to bring one home! Usually if I give myself a week to think about it, the dog or cat has been adopted by then. All I care is that they have a good home.

  27. Hi Rose, it is great to hear the kitten and puppy have already found homes. I wish I could volunteer at our local rescue but my work hours and theirs are the same.

    Hope the iris are doing well for you.

  28. Hi Rose, Kids, kitties, klever kanines and kindness~~perfect K words! I think it's marvelous that you volunteer at the shelter~~I would have a tough time not wanting to adopt all the sweet pups and kitties!
    Thank you for the link love Rose...I am glad that the PPPP and her friends arrived safely. gail

  29. A nicely creative K post Rose. The puppy at the place where you volunteer has a lovely face with such soulful eyes, it is so sad that defenceless animals find themselves in those circumstances!

    Your Sophie really is adorable, I love dogs so much, the world would be a poorer place without them.

    I hope the cold clears up soon and I loved the beautiful quote at the end, very, very touching.

  30. What a great bunch of Ks, so glad some of the critters at they Humane Society have found homes.

  31. What a beautiful post! I just don't know how you do the volunteer thing at the humane society though. It would tear my heart out I think! I guess you get used to it. But everytime I've ever gone to a shelter I end up in tears. You're very special to volunteer your time.

  32. Wonderful Ks!
    I agree, gardeners are the kindest of people. You have received many beautiful plant gifts. Your friend's garden is growing!
    Happy ABC Wednesday.
    I am off to finish decorating for October!

  33. Well done to Sophie on her Canine Good Citizen award! You too, of course. :)

    You are doing such a good thing, volunteering at the shelter. It is hard not to adopt them all, and I'd like to add my support for your plea to adopt an oldie. The old ones are very special, and I do love them. I'd have had another old one this time, but OH put his foot down and said after all the expense of the last two senior dogs, he'd like a break and get one young enough to insure! Oh well. Next time. ;)

    Funny how difficult it is to photograph red, isn't it? I've had that problem too.

  34. Marnie, I couldn't bear to volunteer at the Shelter if I didn't see how many of the animals are quickly adopted. I hope to move the iris to a new bed this fall or next spring that should make them a little happier.

    Gail, Thanks; the PPPP and all are doing great!

    ShySongbird, I couldn't resist putting in the photo of the puppy--such a cutie. It was one of a litter brought there; so sad, except they all found good homes.

    IWG, Thanks for dropping by! The shelter is good about finding homes for all the animals.

    Jean, As I said to Marnie, I couldn't bear to go if I thought these animals wouldn't find good homes.

    Sherry, I have been so fortunate to receive so many passalongs from dear gardening friends.

    Jay, The older dogs have a special place in my heart, but I can relate to you so well. Our previous dog was 9 years old when we adopted him from the shelter, and when he died I was heartbroken. I vowed then not to go through that again, but I feel guilty at the same time.


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