Thank You

“Thank You”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana

I would like to thank everyone who left such lovely messages about losing our sweet cat, Rusty. I appreciate the kind thoughts. I know there are worse tragedies in the world that grab your attention, so thank you again for taking the time to try and lift our spirits. Your comments do help.



Good Bye, Rusty

“Good Bye, Rusty”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana



Today, we lost our sweet little cat, Rusty. He was my garden cat and would always follow me around whenever I was outside and keep me company. He was perfectly behaved in the garden, never walking on plants, etc. We have several bird feeders and always had a great number of birds around, but Rusty was so laid back that the birds had nothing to fear from him.

His death was so sudden and coming only about six weeks after we had to put our little white cat down, it just really has us so sad. I certainly loved that little guy and will miss him so much.

Work or Sleep?

“Work or Sleep?”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana 


We have had another day of rain.  Hallelujah!  Yesterday we received another .7 inches of much needed rain.  Not only is the rain good for the plants, it does help cool things off a bit which makes it a little more pleasant for the humans.  The rain, however hasn’t stopped the activity in the garden.  The birds, bees and butterflies are still very active even if this gardener isn’t.


Bee on Cash. Bouquet (redu)


The bees have been very busy visiting the cashmere bouquet.  I haven’t seen too many honeybees around, just bumble bees.  I mostly see the honeybees at the birdbaths during the peak of the day’s heat, but the bumble bees are out among the flowers all day long.  Such hard workers.  They love the pink vitex and the agapanthas, too.  Butterflies are all over the place now that the weather has warmed up so much.  It is so difficult to photograph them since they never are still very long.


Bee on Pk Vitex (redu)


Of course, with all the recent rain, the frogs have been singing almost constantly.  The little tree frogs are all over the place and are still staying inside any flower that will hold them. Here is one peeking out of a daylily.


Plum Tree Daylily w Frog (redu)


Not every creature in the garden is active as the bees, etc.  Rusty, the garden cat, knows how to deal with the summer heat – find a shady spot and sleep the heat away.


Sleeping Rusty (redu)


So with the rain and the heat keeping me from working in the garden, a mid day nap sounds awfully nice.





Garden Friends

 “Garden Friends”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana 


Every time I go out into the garden, I am being shadowed.  Nothing sinister here.  It is just Rusty, our garden cat, who is a great garden companion.  Whenever I am working in the garden, he is right there checking out and supervising what I am doing.  If I go out to just sit quietly or read, he is right there with me sitting quietly or taking a nap in the chair next to me.  We always have considered ourselves to be dog people, but after being adopted by two stray cats, we have learned to appreciate the feline nature.  They really aren’t that cold and aloof, but can be quite affectionate and loving.  Here is Rusty hunkered down waiting for me to be finished taking garden photos.




Another little garden friend belongs to the neighbors across the street.  She spends most of her days in our garden sleeping in the ferns or under the boxwood.   She, too, was a stray that they adopted after Hurricane Katrina.  She doesn’t follow us around the garden like Rusty does, but she will sit close by and watch our every move.  Blackie will attentively listen as I talk to her while I garden.  She always looks at me as if she understands every word.  Here she is intently watching a squirrel that is across the yard.




Just like the birds that contribute color, song, and movement, pets add another dimension to a garden.  If anyone would happen to just walk up while I am in the garden, they probably would think I am a little batty and talking to myself.  But, on closer inspection ,they would see one or both of these furry garden friends close by taking the time to pass the day with me in the sunshine and fresh air.

Garden Cats

This post, “Garden Cats” was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana 

I love working in the garden and having a cat nearby.  Our current garden cat is Rusty who adopted us about 8 years ago. 


 He is so funny with the way he will slowly stroll over to wherever I am working.  After checking out whatever it is that I am doing, he will move a little ways away and lay down.  From this short distance, he keeps an eye on things.  If I move off to another area, it isn’t long before he gets up and ambles over to where I am.  He loves to sit in the sun and sleep.  Of course, I do not plant in what seems to be his favorite spots.  Since I mulch with pine straw, he always seems to find an out of the way place (usually under a large shrub) to settle down in the straw.  We seem to think that his sleeping in the pine straw is what keeps him from having any fleas. 


He is such a sweet, laid-back cat, who never causes any problems.  He doesn’t bother the birds, doesn’t scratch in the garden, and doesn’t walk on any plants.  He is the perfect garden companion.

We have two more garden cats, but they do not belong to us.  They are neighbor cats who just like to hang out around our house.  If I am working in the front garden, they usually show up to check things out.  They don’t bother anything either – just a visit to say hello and back home they go.


If you are going to have pets in the garden, you might want to check out the ASPCA list of toxic plants.  Also be careful in choosing products that you buy to treat your garden or lawn.  Make sure they are pet safe.  Personally, I only use very few chemicals and then only the least toxic.  If I don’t feel comfortable being in contact with them, I don’t want my pets in contact either.

Just like the birds, butterflies, and squirrels add to the atmosphere of the garden, so do pets like Rusty and “friends”.