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Orange flowers juice up any garden

Orange Flowers

Dahlias, petunias, hibiscus and many other plants produce juicy orange blossoms. 

When your garden needs a fresh pop of color, consider adding orange flowers.
Orange and green are complimentary colors on the color wheel, meaning that they contrast with one another perfectly. Since most gardens include green foliage, orange flowers stand out beautifully.
You have your pick of plenty of orange flowering possibilities, from annuals and perennials to vines and vegetables. And orange ranges from a pure pumpkin orange to an almost fluorescent orange to a more muted terra cotta, so depending on your garden, there’s a hue for everyone. Think orange trumpet vines, orange pansies and petunias or orange poppies.
My article published in The Denver Post includes tips for using orange flowers in your garden or containers. Whatever the season, orange flowers will juice up your outdoor spaces. You may read the article here.

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Pansies, Violas and Panolas:

pansies
Pansies are one of the best plants to grow whether a seasoned gardener or new to the garden. Beautiful, easy-to-grow and even edible, pansies thrive both in early spring, in autumn and in many areas into winter. I reported on pansies for The Denver Post and also learned about a new mix between pansies and their smaller cousins: known as panolas, these plants will substitute for impatiens–formerly preferred for shade, but currently under siege by a plant disease.

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Cottage foods industry: adult “lemonade stands”

Cottage foods are a steadily growing trend. Are you an avid gardener with a surplus yield? Would you like to make a little profit from your homegrown produce? Or are you a baker who’d be sweet on selling your breads and cookies and other sugarplums — kind of the way you did at your childhood lemonade stands?
If you live in Denver, join the growing cottage foods industry. I reported on this win-win ordinance for The Denver Post. Here’s the link.
If you don’t live in Denver, check to see whether your town allows you to set up a stand to sell your garden produce, baked goods and other products. The cottage food trend is growing because people recognize this old-fashioned mercantile as a sensible wave for our future.

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Easy steps for long lasting, weather worthy Spring container gardens

flowers     If your green thumb itches for a spring gardening project, try your hand at these stunning spring container gardens. With a bit of planning and this expert advice, you can easily create the most stunning displays of spring favorites: tulips and daffodills, pansies and hyacinths. What’s even better is that with simple care these container will last, looking lovely week after week. These plants will withstand the last of Old Man Winter if that’s as issue for you, as it is here in Denver, where we can get blizzards in March. 

I reported this article for The Denver Post with the help of Laurie Jekel, owner of The Last Detail landscape design service in Denver for more than 30 years. Laurie designs the container gardens at Cherry Hills Country Club.

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Vatican cardinal praises “Angels Alleluia” film on angels

AADVDCover“Angels Alleluia,” written and directed by Colleen Smith, currently is streaming from the website of Rocky Mountain PBS. The 30-minute documentary film looks at the nine orders of angels according to scriptures, saints, scholars and artists.
Cardinal J. Francis Stafford — former Archbishop of Denver who went on to serve in the Vatican in Rome, Italy — recently viewed the documentary film. Excerpts of the cardinals comments follow:

“Thank you for sharing the documentary film on the nine choirs of angels. It is of excellent quality… You brought that mystery of mysteries, God’s inner life, closer to us through your commentary and direction. PBS deserves also our thanks for supporting a project not only of high artistry but also of deep interiority.”

“…The windows were infinitely detailed in their abstraction. How to organize and explain such holy realities in a non-sacramental, increasingly imageless world? Your writing and leadership molded the raw matter with a form. The myriads of beings in the glass were brought to order. Form requires finality, purpose… Your words complemented the art work — its movement and inner vitality came alive for us through your work.”

“Life and form danced together in the stained glass. Your leadership made the choreography work. The process of making the glass with fire and breath was literally breathtaking. The blending of skilled and verbal commentators was just right… Now God’s reality seems nearer even in His distance. Our Lady of Loreto has offered the wider church and world another gift. Your film has allowed us a glance of the glory of God in the mirror of the celestial Hierarchy… It leads each of us to a greater purity of heart so that every thought of ours will be God and every breath will be God. The theme is so profound and complex in its beauty that the film needs to be watched again and again.”

Rocky Mountain PBS will stream the documentary until Sunday, April 12. We invite you to watch here.

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9 Quotes about the 9 Orders of Angels

St. Julia's, Weston MA

ANGELS

“Our Guardian Angels are our most faithful friends, because they are with us day and night, always and everywhere. We ought often to invoke them. The Angels take great pleasure in helping us with our enterprises, when they are in accordance with God’s will.”

St. Jean Vianney

ARCHANGELS

“It is from God, through angels, that we have learned the most beautiful of our doctrines and the most holy sections of our laws.” — Josephus

VIRTUES

“The vision of the angels

works softly and peaceably,

awakening joy and exultation.”

— Saint Athanasius

POWERS

“It is characteristic

of God and His angels

that in their activity

they give true joy

and spiritual exultation,

while removing the sadness

and affliction

that the enemy excites.”

— Saint Ignatius of Loyola

DOMINIONS

“The first thing about the angels that we ought to imitate is their consciousness of the Presence of God.”

— St. Jean Vianney

SERAPHIM

“Seraphim* were stationed above; each of them had six wings: with two they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they hovered.

One cried out to the other:

‘Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts!

All the earth is filled with his glory!’”

— Isaiah 6:2-3

CHERUBIM

“…the Lord Jesus himself,

leads them on

to the very fullness of truth

and eagerly unfolds before their gaze

the treasures of wisdom and knowledge

hoarded in the depths of His being.”

~ St. Bernard of Clairvoux on the Cherubim

THRONES

“…through the ministry

of the angels

we have received

the opportunity

to ascend to the things on high.”

— Saint Hilary

PRINCIPALITIES

“They place those

who are first in the last place

and the last first;

they pull down the mighty from their thrones

and exalt the lowly.

This is the source of their incentive to love.”

— St. Bernard of Clairvoux on the Principalities

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What flowers say to your Valentine

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On the eve of Valentine’s Day, I’m remembering my stints working for Lehrer’s, a Denver florist, and for Country Fair Gardens. In both establishments, Valentine’s Day was a big holiday. Flowers make beautiful gifts.

This Valentine’s Day, if you’re giving flowers to somebody you love, you might enjoy these four heartfelt posts on my Examiner.com page, where I serve as Denver Flower & Gardening Examiner.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you and all those you love.

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