Hydrangeas Like June

Can you believe it?  I wouldn’t, but I’m here looking at the real thing.  It’s October 13th, y’all.  Why are my hydrangea bushes still blooming?  Mine usually bloom here in North Mississippi from the end of May to about the first week in June.  Then they’re done.  But this year, they continued to have blooms all summer, and now into fall.  I realize they have hybrids now that are repeat bloomers, but I don’t have that kind, so the mystery will continue.

This year, everything green and blooming tracked a month early.  I was not ready for Spring, but it started at February’s end.  We had a milder winter.  Then we had several very hot, dry spells (I’m talking three weeks at a time with no rain and 105 degree heat index).  How did they even survive?

Add slugs to the weather factor.  How DID they survive?  The battle with slugs has gone on for several years now.  I’ve never lived anywhere that had them this bad.  After trying all the “natural” stuff, like eggshells, sand, coffee grounds, and I even bought a can of beer to try that.  But I never could figure out how to get it to the bush beds at night without my Suzi-Q drinking it all and getting tipsy. I finally decided my problem was bigger than “natural”.  So, off to the garden center I went to get the real slug bait and killer.  I sprinkled that out, and it worked!  But, every three weeks, I had to reapply.  Must have been because it finally rained and dissolved the pellets.  I tried to be diligent and not let the slugs take over again, so all my plants looked better this year.  Just for the record, the slug bait I bought had the word “natural” on the label. 😉

Speaking of Suzi-Q, here she is.

It’s pretty hard to see her under this shade from a tree, but she was just hanging out the other day, and I sneaked up on her with my phone camera.  Not that you can sneak up on this one, but she trusts me now, and she sees me with my phone in my hand a lot.  So, no alarm since I had no “real” camera in my hand.  If I have anything in my hand, she will not let me near her.  It must be an abused dog thing.  I don’t know, since she’s our first adopted stray.

Susi-Q has eyes as black as the center of a black-eyed-Susan.  Hence the name.  Matter of fact, the only white she has is the very tip of her toes.  I almost named her Tippy, because we had a dog named Tippy when I was a baby.  I don’t remember Tippy at all, but I’ve seen those old home movies, and that one didn’t look anything like this one.  Kind of ruined the idea for me.

We get a lot of strays on our road.  (Warning: here comes a “sermon-ette”.)  Why do people dump their dogs out here?  Don’t people know we can’t care for all the dogs they “give” us?  They come near our house, and our dogs go crazy.  These “intruders” run off down the road, but they eventually starve to death.  Usually they disappear, so we don’t have to watch them starve.  (We have a neighbor that takes care of some of the disappearing.)  If people don’t want their dogs, why do they think we do?  If they’ve got the guts to throw a dog out the car window on a highway, then they should have the guts to shoot their dog for a quick and relatively painless death.  Suzi-Q was lucky to be a puppy and injured (she had a hole in her “shoulder” from landing on the highway, y’all!).  Because of her injury, we had sympathy for her and nursed her back to health. 

It’s funny about abused dogs.  They take forever to trust you.  Suzi-Q’s immediate reaction when we opened the door to go outside was to run the other way.  For months she did this.  I lavished this dog with love, and she welcomed it and was very loving and sweet right back.  But that reaction was still there every time I opened the door.  We’ve had her for four years now, and she jumps with glee when we’re coming home and pulling into the garage, so happy to see us.  And now she doesn’t dart away when we open the door.  Finally! 

I’m allergic to cats, so we have no cats.  We have a barn, so we needed a cat.  Well, we thought we did, but Suzi-Q (aka Glee!) has become quite the barn cat.  She drags up all kinds of little barn mice and leaves them at the door step, showing us her prize.  I won’t go into detail about all she does with the mice, but I don’t look out the window and watch.  It must be a dog thing.  I’m just SO glad she stays outside.

Suzi-Q has become a wonderful and loving dog, and somebody threw away a treasure.  She warns us when there’s a critter getting too close.  I don’t mean mice critters.  Bigger ones!  But non-aggressive ones, like deer, armadillo, and skunks.  Then she hides, which is easy for her at night.  I dread the day she gets too close to a skunk, y’all!  I will give a hoot about that!  Wouldn’t you?

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About Kim

Hi! I'm a Christian, wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, and fifty-something blogger. Let's live gracefully through the seasons of life, shall we?
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