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    This has been a hot summer so far. Its important if you have fish in your pond that you make sure the water isn't too warm for them. As your water evaporates replenish with cool water. Your fish will be happy!

    The tropical waterlilies sure are blooming up a storm in my pond.







    The Albert Greenberg's colors are outstanding this year as are the other waterlilies. I'm not certain if its the hot summer days or just that all the pond plants are happy this year. These were all new plants this year since we just redid our pond so other than the initial fertilizing when I planted them, the first part of June, they haven't been fertilized since. I best get to that so I get as many flowers as possible before summer is over. I know tropical waterlilies last only during the summer but I seem to enjoy them more than the hardy waterlilies because of their colors.



     Cooler temperatures are the thing again with a slight freeze in Ohio.  I tend to feel drained when the days are rainy but that sunshine sure makes one feel good again!  We turned the garden over this week and that's the last of the tomatoes until next year.  I do really enjoy the garden and the benefits of enjoying the fresh vegetables all winter long but it keeps one busy during the month of August.  Now its apple time....I like making the fresh applesauce and putting away a few whole apples for the apple crisp and pies.  There's nothing better than a warm apple crisp on a cold winter day.

    Let's face it....there isn't much to do with the pond now that summer is ending and things are put to bed.  I pulled all the water hyacinths out last week.  Trimmed up the lilies and took all the tropical waterlilies and put them to bed in the greenhouse for the winter.  I still have to drop the hardy waterlilies but some are still blooming so I'll wait awhile yet.  My cardinal flower is still standing tall and I must say this has been its best year yet! I had at least 7 flowers on it and the hummingbirds sure were happy!!

    The weather has been pretty hot lately.  The tropical lilies are blooming like crazy.  If you've been having hot weather lately you may want to keep adding some fresh cold water to your ponds.  This replenishes the water loss through evaporation and also gives your fish some fresh water. 

    We all look forward to the summer when we can start enjoying the fruits of our labor.  If your like me, when the flowers start blooming and our ponds get the coverage they need to help prevent the algae growth, we sit back and think about what we can add next or change next.  I often sit next to my pond and think should I just sit here and enjoy the peace or go and start picking the greens and tomatoes from the garden....tough decision.  I decided to work in the garden.  Since I'm always trying to find recipes to use the abundant crop of zucchini I get, I thought I'd share this delicious recipe I just received from a friend.  I know its not pond related but who doesn't enjoy eating. 

    Chocolate Zucchini Cake

    Combine and set aside the following:  2 cup unsifted flour, 1/4 cup unsweetened dark cocoa, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. ground cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. salt.

    In mixing bowl at high speed beat together, 3 large eggs, 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar.  Beat this until light and fluffy then at low speed gradually add the following: 1/2 cup cooking oil until well blended and then the above flour mixture.  Blend in 1/2 cup sour cream and then add 1 1/2 cup zucchini into mixture.  (You can pat this in paper towels to remove any extra moisture before adding into mixture.)

    To add alittle extra try cream cheese and peanut butter for the icing or use your own recipe for icing.

    Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes in a 9x13 greased and floured pan.

    YUMMY!  Now you can cut yourself a piece and sit by your pond and enjoy both the cake and your pond!

    This is one of our favorites!  The 'Green Smoke' tropical water lily is an outstanding color of chartreuse with smoky blue tips.  Its leaves are lightly speckled, bronze-green and the blooms of the 'Green Smoke' are 6-8 inches held high above the water that are platter shaped.It will spread 5-6 feet on the water surface.  This is a good choice for small to medium size ponds.

    You can safely place a tropical waterlily in your outdoor pond when the water reaches a consistent temperature of about 70 degrees.  You can stunt the growth or even kill a tropical lily if placed into a cold pond.  It sends the lily into shock, returning them to dormancy.  You should fertilize the lily every two or three weeks to keep it blooming throughout the warm season.

    Purchase Green Smoke, tropical water lily here.

    Thought I would share some pictures periodically taken from my pond and my sisters.  We enjoy sharing our pictures and seeing pictures of other ponds and pond plants.