dye garden

Meva is doing better day by day so we decided a trip to the cabin would perk us all up.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMeva does not like to swim or bath but she does like to wade and explore along the shoreline. I was eager to see the dye garden and to capture some colors.


the cosmos was pretty straggly and dry but not to worry I gathered a small pot of blossoms then harvested a ton of seeds to plant for next year.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI was looking forward to working with my hibiscus and black hollyhocksOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAagain only a few fresh blossoms but I picked a half gallon of dried blossoms and harvested seed for next year. I can only imagine how pretty the dye garden looked when these babies were in full bloom. the one negative is the Japanese beetles really love these flowers also and munch through the flowers in short order. the beetles also love the red hibiscus I planted. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthe blossoms are gorgeous and huge almost the size of dinner plates. I have two of these perrenials and one had finished its flowers and the other was still producing one afternoon I picked 27 blossoms. I have 2 gallon containers filled with these blossoms both dry and fresh. I will set up a vat for these blossoms this week. I don’t cook this flower instead I use a solar method and let the bucket sit in the sun. the water will turn a lovely purple.  just water doesn’t seem to do the trick with these flowers I experimented a little and found if I add vinegar to the dye bath then my fiber will take up the color. unfortunately the vibrant purple is not the color you end up with. after a rinse I ended up with a great blueish grey shade with the black hollyhocks when I dyed with it 2 years ago. and last year my hibiscus gave me beautiful shades of green – and a couple skeins of a great blue spruce color. so I can’t wait to see what I get this year. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAeven though my garden was a little dry looking and past its prime I had a really great time. it was the perfect mid-weekend getaway!!

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2 Responses to dye garden

  1. jen says:

    Aww, my dog Emma is like Meva ~ doesn’t like to swim, but loves to walk in the water and especially puddles… she loves to lay down in them !

    Just look at your dye garden . Those hibiscus blossoms are magnificent !

    • Mary Jo says:

      Dogs have such great personalities. Meva loves to explore the shoreline but if I tried to get her to go deeper she would bound out of the water.
      Even though the hibiscus isn’t a native plant it is such a great addition to the dye garden. The blooms are so tropical looking in my cabin garden. The hot dry spell hardly affected it. I can’t wait to see what colors I will get from it this year.

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