Thursday, December 20, 2012


I haven't spent very much time out in the garden recently. Far too busy with festivities and it shows! Still, I'm not too busy to notice little things going on with my plants.

The calamondin is starting to bloom again. I have to say that this is the easiest of the citrus to grow. My lemons produce heavily but their leaves frequently look out of sorts. The calamondin just stays as green and fruitful year-round sending out sprays of fragrant blooms several times. So pretty to have in the house in the winter.
Not that I don't appreciate every one of those 100+ Meyer lemons from this year's crop.

I have made up several batches of lemon curd. Great on bread, ice cream or in cakes. I used to watch my grandma make this, in her huge brass pan, on her Aga stove. It was the slow heat and constant stirring that thickened the lemon juice, egg, sugar, butter mixture. I use the same recipe.
3oz butter
8oz sugar
rind and juice of 2 lemons.
I use a double boiler, but for years I just used a bowl over hot water and constant stirring.

I managed to ID this plant which had seeded itself in a pot in a friend's garden. A beautiful light airy plant with pretty white daisies similar to blackfoot daisy. I didn't find it in my wildflower book but when I went to the Wildflower Center resource page and scrolled through the Aster family there I found it. Bidens alba. I was extremely grateful that it showed up in the Bs!
Yes, it is native and sometimes called Common beggar ticks. If you look at the seeds(of course I collected some) you can see why. I had trouble removing them from the tissue I used to save them.

I will be trying them out in the native landscape next year.


  1. A seed? I thought that was a bug at first. Good to have the flower ID.

    My Meyer lemon tree produced one lemon this first year has has two tiny new ones from fall blooms. I will try the lemon curd with lemons from the store until the tree is producing. Lemon bars are my favorite treat.

  2. That is a lovely native, I hope it takes to your garden! And that lemon curd looks delicious even in preparation...

  3. So glad you shared your lemon curd recipe ... 45 lemons were harvested this year from my little potted tree. A first! I usually get a dozen or so. I thought that was a bug too ... it looks pernicious but sure makes cute flowers. Merry Christmas, Jenny!

  4. Like Cat, I'm so glad you shared. Picked a load of them off today and there are still more. I use them in my hot tea but that doesn't use them up very quickly!

  5. I made a batch of Limoncello last week but I still have over 20 lemons to use. That's a lot of lemon curd!

    Keep an eye on the Bidens ... it's an extremely enthusiastic reseeder!

  6. I'm loving your calamondin. It is such a pretty little tree. I'm adding this to my list of citrus plants to add to the garden.

    Meyer Lemons are my absolute favorite! They are a little pricey to buy, so I'm hoping to purchase a Meyer Lemon tree in the Spring.

  7. I failed to buy the citrus trees that I saw at a nursery not long ago and regretted it ever since. We call the seeds of Bidens 'Spanish needles' -- our beggar ticks are tick sized and flat and not painful to remove like sand spurs and Spanish needles when the dog runs through them. Merry Christmas.

    If more than one version of this comment shows up, I'm having problems with Blogger. Please delete any excess.

  8. I thought that was a bug, too. Don't think I've seen that one.

    Thanks for the lemon curd recipe. We don't have a lemon tree, but it might need to go on 'the list'. I bet the curd smells good, cooking.

    Merry Christmas.

  9. Thanks for the recipe, Rock Rose Jenny! We've experimented with limoncello but now want to make your grandma's lemon curd. Better do it soon, while the idea of standing next to the stove and stirring sounds cozy instead of like punishment! We are quite enjoying the novelty of needing comforters and quilts.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose