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Red velvet geraniums

The other day I pinched a cutting of this geranium that was overflowing in a car park. Naughty of me, I know, but you couldn’t even tell where I took a bit after I’d done it.

I don’t know the name of the variety, but I call it red velvet because it really does look like it. I’ve only seen it around in the last few years, so I think it must be a relatively newly bred variety.

It’s so lush and a beautiful dark vivid red. I have a couple of  dark red pelargoniums in pots, but this is definitely a geranium.

I planted the cutting as soon as I got home. Geraniums usually take easily from cuttings, so I hope this one does. Fingers crossed.

Wisteria

Spring is continuing to bloom here and I was so pleased when my neighbor’s wisteria vine extended itself along my back fence.

I watched and waited, hoping to get some flowers, and lo! it produced several lovely branches of flowers.

I was delighted. So pretty and with a delicate fragrance. 

I took this photo — and just as well I did, because overnight the possums found it and devoured every single flower!

Oh well, at least I was able to enjoy it for a short time. There’s still one dangling flower cluster in the lemon tree, and I expect the possums will find it and then go on to eat the lemon rinds.

I can’t really blame them — We’ve taken over their habitat so it’s fair enough that they eat what they can of our gardens. 

Lemons

My lemon tree is laden with fruit and I’ve been using lemons as often as I can. I love them. I’ve also given quite a few to friends.

The other night I had guests for dinner and I made a lemon tart, which was very yummy. I served it with home-made blueberry sauce and ice cream. 

I forgot to take a photo of it. And though there was still quite a large piece left, when a friend dropped around the following day, we each had a slice for afternoon tea, and she took the rest home to feed to her husband and son.

I’ve squeezed a few and frozen the juice, as I like it when I have just a glass of water. I’ve also frozen some slices of lemon, as they look pretty in drinks, as well as adding a nice freshness.

I’ve made several dishes — a curry and a chicken casserole — that used lemon juice and zest of lemon (the peel) in them. And I’ll probably make osso buco soon which I always top with gremolata, which is a mix of lemon zest and finely chipped parsley and garlic, served raw — just mixed together. It’s delicious and only takes a few minutes to make. In fact I make gremolata to go with a lot of stew-type dishes but it’s also yummy with fish dishes. You can read more about it here.

I’m using them as fast as I can because it won’t be long before the possums sniff them out. Last year they nibbled off the entire peel of the lemons, leaving the fruit hanging on the tree, naked. You can read about it here.

I also like making lemon drizzle cake. There are heaps of recipes around, but since I have a gluten intolerant friend visiting soon, I’ll probably make the cake from this recipe. Almond meal (which is just ground almonds) makes a surprisingly moist cake. Alternatively I might try this recipe, which looks delicious and is also gluten-free. I made limoncello last year so I can use that, too.

What’s your favorite thing to do with lemons?