About Art (and Nature) from the Hartt

I don’t remember when I first fell in love with daylilies. I know I have purchased them throughout the years because I liked their colorful blooms. Then, several years ago, I picked them for a xeroscaping project. It seems like that was the tipping point to owning 180 varieties.

Daylilies in my Southwest daylily name garden

I got smarter about gardening. I think the daylily blooms were huge motivators. As I got better with daylilies, I got better with houseplants. I went through a orchid phase. Now, it is largely succulents, bromeliads and begonias.

Colorful, stripped bromeliad

Back to the daylilies. Fall always made me feel sad because the daylilies went away and it made winter seem more dismal than ever. One day, I decided to learn to paint daylilies so I would never have a day pass at my home without a daylily bloom.

Painted daylily small tile

I am a creative and so painting was very engaging for me. I made tiles to hang on my walls so that I see daylilies as soon as I open my eyes. I gave everyone daylily coasters for Christmas several years. I broadened to some more scenic paintings. I did a few oils of the Southwest that turned out well enough to hang or give away. I painted stepping stones for my garden. The list goes on. Painting kept me connected with nature during the winter months.

Working in my art cove looks like this!

I am a nurse and nurse-midwife by background. My career has been meaningful – I have helped pioneer and/or transition many health-related programs and I still work part time as faculty and leadership at a small college. However, due to multiple unforeseen issues, I decided to semi-retire this summer.

This is me out by my potting shed, tending daylilies.

Am I ready to quit working full-time? Heck no. Am I ready to work for myself doing things that I love and find engaging? Absolutely!

Succulent painting

I have had a Facebook page for almost 10 years called “Art from the Hartt” because I had a dream of selling my art. It never moved beyond the Facebook page because work took too much of my time. It is time to live the dream!

Art and Nature from the Hartt

I have a background in human wellbeing and resilience. I want to focus my business on creating art (and selling plants) that create positive emotion. I have read that having a flower in the room you are in raises your happiness score! So, that is the vision of my business – making the world more resilient through art and nature.

I have a separate page/blog about my business at Art and Nature From the Hartt (click link). You can also find the business on Facebook (click link for page). I wanted to take a moment to talk about it here so people were aware that I do sell daylily paintings and other nature and Southwest related paintings. I also will be selling daylilies, so if you are ever interested in purchasing one of the daylilies you see on my blog, you can contact me at cathy.hartt55@gmail.com. I will know more about what daylilies are available soon. I also offer some types of begonia, bromeliad, and succulent. I will be launching an Etsy store as soon as I have a bit more inventory.

Painted tile of rex begonia

Before I go, I want to introduce you to my garden helpers. I have three rescue dogs, Kachina, Sazi and Moki. Soksabai, my cat, also follows me to the daylily garden every morning when I do my photos.

My dogs Kachina, Sazi Ana and Moki
Soksabai – My gardening cat

Please contact me at the email above if you have any questions. I can do many special or personalized requests. If you love daylilies/plants and/or the Southwest – you are in the right place. I am located in Montrose, CO.

What type of art or plant raises your sense of wellbeing???

Poinsettias in the Bloom Closet!

Poinsettias are a sign that the holidays are just around the corner. I started collecting them a few years ago when I was a starving sixty-something doctoral student. I bought a pretty orange one and babied it because it was a luxury to buy a plant back then.

That plant bloomed all winter and flourished all summer. However, my first experiment in making a bloom closet that fall didn’t work out so well. The poinsettia bloomed, sort of, but was horribly leggy and didn’t survive winter #2.

I’ve gotten better with them. Trial and error. I have two that I’ve had going on four winters. I got a couple more the next year and, again, last year. Well, actually I got more than that, but lost a few along the way. I lost both of my orange ones from last winter to the cold spring.

I have 4 in bloom and one that’s still in the bloom closet. I have two still recovering from the cold spring that I’ll bloom in a couple of months.

How do I rebloom mine? Well, forget all the advice about putting it in a closet by night and a sunny window by day. I’m way too forgetful. But, I have a plant closet in my basement family room that has plant LED lights on a timer and a blackout curtain closed all the time, except when I water.

It’s year #3 for the closet and my poinsettias thrive down there. Once they bloom, they come upstairs for several weeks u til they start dropping leaves. Generally, they go back into the closet until May, when they sit in my front yard and get sprinkler system rain every day.

It’s hot and dry, but the poinsettias do fine. This is the first year that they have struggled a little. They are euphorbia, after all- just like my 6 ft pencil cactus.

I bring them in and put them in the bloom closet just before freeze. I have blooms by late October or early November. Have you ever rebloomed a poinsettia? Meanwhile the drought has returned and I need to winter water the daylilies during Thanksgiving break.

Boil it Down!

Today, I feel the need to simplify life.  I worked from 8 to 7.  My orchids cry for water.  They aren’t doing well splitting time with the daylilies in summer.  I am ambivalent about losing some of them.  I need to pack for my camping trip. Laundry needs to be done.  I haven’t gotten 8 hours of sleep in nearly a week.

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Raven Woodsong 8.15

I got hobbies when I was trying to balance life and find purpose when working from home.  I took a more challenging away-from-home-job a year ago.  Now, the mania of the first of a term with nearly all new faculty, new programs, new campuses has hit.  I am attempting to shift the work culture, and it feels like my life balance is taking a hit.

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Cripple Creek 8.15

What could I eliminate? Not my dogs or my daylilies.  Not my camping or road trips.  Orchids can be thinned.  I want to get into air plants – why don’t I just leave it?  IDK.  I like plants.  And, I don’t want to give up my hobbies.  It took me years to finally get some because career was my life.  I think they are essential – but I need to boil them down to the essentials.

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Orange Vols 8.15

A Good Day . . . in the Daylilies

Today started with an email from one of my resilience websites.  I have seen this before – but it is still as beautiful.  I wish I had the patience for time-lapse of these blooms.  If you want to feel a little positive emotion and wonder, give this a few minutes.

So, here are my weekend miracles. Frans Hals:

 

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Frans Hals – Photo by Colorado Kid Daylilies – C. Hartt

 

Orange Flurry:

 

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Orange Flurry – Photo by Colorado Kid Daylilies – C. Hartt

 

Red Hot Returns:

 

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Red Hot Returns – Photo by Colorado Kid Daylilies – C. Hartt

 

Stella:

 

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Golden Stella de Oro – Photo by Colorado Kid Daylilies – C. Hartt

 

Not bad for late August. PS – I could have sworn that Heirloom Heaven bloomed yesterday but no photos – I must have missed it somehow.

Today brought a light application of Mir-Acid. (Miracle Grow for acid loving plants).  My soil here is so basic that it won’t change. The base in the soil quickly neutralizes the acid.  The iron is bound at that pH, so it can’t be absorbed.  Anemic daylilies.  Mulch, manure, peat moss, acidifiers can all help.  They probably won’t change the pH for long (if at all), but they do boost the availability of nutrients.  The joy of living in an ancient sea bed. It’s trial and error.  I am grateful for the lessons of my garden.  It makes me feel like a hands-on healer, again.  A good day.