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Back in February, my husband announced he was going to have a garden this year. I told him this was a great idea since my Dad was getting older, Daddy would surely need some help. He told me in just a few short weeks he was planting lettuce, spinach, cabbage, cauliflower, brocolli, peas, carrotts and onions. The strawberries and corn would come soon after. He also announced he was planting fruit trees: apple, peach, pear and pecan. Shortly after all those announcements, he told me he was planting grape vines. WOW, where was he ever going to find the time for a garden this size?? When he informed me he was planting potatoes in tires, I knew he was crazy I had never heard of planting potatoes in a tire and was convinced this would never work. Besides, my Dad was the gardner in this family and he always planted potatoes straight in the ground. So with the help of my Dad on February 28th, the planting began.
Been too long. Hope everyone had a nice winter season & are gearing up for another fun spring. I’ve been very busy trying to get this latest piece done. I would have had it done earlier too, if it wasn’t for all those pesky holiday, family, & sporting events.
So, this latest design is a replacement for my previous standing fountain which wasn’t quite kosher. It had a few flaws that I wanted to fix right away while they were still fresh in my head. So voilà 3 1/2 months later we have the 70’s retro tiki fountain. It’s ~33” tall, holds 5 gallons of water w/ built in filter, and includes three high power submersible LED lights. It also comes apart in two pieces for easy shipping! It really looks fantastic at night & I’m really happy with it. Here’s a little picture from start to finish + a night time video!
THanks for looking!
I live in Southwest Florida, and have been reading a lot about herbs and its medicinal use.
I have decided to start my herb garden.
I have been reading all I can find about it.
I am in the process of thinking about the space I have available for it and selection of the herbs I will plant.
Mobile planters ( those rectangular planters with 4 wheels for mobility 0 seems to be my first choice. Due to the space i have , I will probably do a "steps design". I also feel that I should include vegetables, plastic barrels seems to be more affordable to me.
I have found some sites that offers seeds for sale and they also have some beautiful flowers full of fragrance. hummmm! ...maybe I can include some flowers!
I have checked the Old Farmer's Almanac, and it only makes sense that moon phases influence the growth of plants.
I will have to settle for Lowes or Home Depot to buy soil. Certainly I will have to enrich the soil somehow. Many of my previous attempts to grow things did not work well, with the exception of the genura procubens ( that the rabbit ate with pleasure) and my Aloe Vera that survives my husband watering for it when I am away.
I have to do all in baby steps due to work schedule and funds available to it.
I can't wait to start really doing it!!
I will ask a leave from work tomorrow. Dammit, I have to work on Saturday and if ask for a leave ,the Accountant will cut my wage. OK, I don't care. I need rest and I want to start my gardening.
My parents are farmers in the countryside for all their lives. They fed up two sons and two daughters. I am the youngest one.They still live in the hometown with my elder brother. Now they do not do much farmwork now. My mother feed two pigs and some chickens and one duck. The cats eat many of the neches. so there left only 15 also.
my father did not agreed with feeding any pigs or chicken, but My mother knows my wife and I like the countryside growed up pork and chicken. hehe. animal for eat, not pets.
But my brother works in the seaside city with his wife just leave his two boys to my parents to look after.
I come back home about 2 or 3 weeks. I know my mom always want me back home and stay with her.
It is about 40 minutes by bus to the countryside house. It was built for many years but rarely live in it.
still live in the old house. The old house was rebuilt last year. I will take a photo about that kind of Chinese traditional old house. and some photos of the new house.
I will not here for 2 days and will come back with much photos about the wild land.Also I will take some photos of my parents and nephews.
I will do some tiding work on the land if it not rain. then make some design to the garden.
then I need my frinds here to give me some advices. OK?
I will take my little daughter with me. See you guys next Monday. I have to leave and catch the bus.
Love you guys here. God bless you all.
Linjoy From China.
PS: Chinese farmers do not like gardening. Because they deel with nature all their lives and
and most of them lived a hard life on the land during the passed many years. So many of morden farmers prefer to enjoy the leisure time do some funny gambling or something else like watch TV. Just do not like to make the yard beautiful and tide enough.Maybe Chinese still live a hard life. Many of them still cook by firewood not gas and rare use aircondition.
Up on the granite cliff I began building up a small patch of soil to grow potatoes. That is one crop the land critters pretty much leave alone. I gathered mulch from a lakeshore bank on a nearby beach, bags of decaying leaves from a small back bay, and add my annual compost from the float garden and kitchen scraps. An annual sack of manure and now I have enough soil to grow potatoes for us to enjoy. You can read more about my gardening at my blog if you like.
Welcome to my garden. I live most of the year in a float cabin on Powell Lake in Coastal BC. I love to garden, but my yard is all water. Our good friend John who built our cabin came to the rescue with a cedar log float with four raised beds. A solar panel with a bilge pump makes watering easy and a pulley system send the whole garden out into the water to protect it from hungry land-based critters. You can read more about my gardening experiences at my blog. -- Margy
Well Happy Mother's Day to all of you proud, strong, loving, passionate Mothers out there today. I had a great day, did what I love most. Attended a beautiful service this morning where we honored Mary our guiding Mother as well as all Mothers. Then had a great lunch and worked in the yard on the new bed and walkway. Took some time to visit our local garden center and my husband bought me a beautiful new blue glaze pot. Came back home an read a book for awhile. Painted and had craft time with my 4 year old daughter. Then we worked out in the garden together. We managed to get a ton of stuff planted and watered in. Here are some photos of the "Fairy" craft we made. We also made little "Fairy" boats out of some seed pods left over from the fall.
Again Happy Mother's Day and Happy Gardening to all!
See the rest of my blog at - http://victoriaspatiogarden.b
Last week the temps. got up into the 60s so we were able to uncover and clean our water garden. (It is not that big a water garden only 4' by 6' but we enjoy it.) We have plans on adding to it in time but right now it suits us.Parts of it are 3' deep but most of it is shallower.)
All of our fish made it through the year and we found 2 frogs in the water garden as we were cleaning it. We did lose one fish the next day. I guess it couldn't take the cleaning, however at least now we are ready for spring. We had to divide the yellow water iris that grows in the garden and decided to switch the water fall and the iris around so that the iris would no longer block the view of the water fall when you are sitting on the bench.
The water fall is a small one so it sort of got covered up by the iris. The iris had been planted in a planter box that was 2' by 8". It outgrew that box and what we took out was a 4' x4' square of iris. To get it out my husband had to use our truck. It was just so big we couldn't lift it any other way. We also fertilized the water lilies and repotted one of them. They are already showing growth so probably needed it.
Unfortunately now the temps. have dropped back into the 20s and 30s but we have the water fall going and that should help keep the water garden from freezing over. We still have the bubbler going and will leave it on until the weather finally warms up and stays warm. It has been five years since the last cleaning so it was really needed. Now we should be able to enjoy it for a few more years until the next cleaning.
This is what our water garden looked like last year.
One of our fish. This photo was taken last summer.
This is a close up of the yellow water iris. It was taking over our water garden. Now we have put only a small portion of it back in.
We put our fish into a tub that we use for another water garden. As you can see they all made it. There are also two frogs in the water garden. Once we had the garden cleaned we had to recover it with screens as there are a lot of leaves left from last fall. We plan on keeping it covered until we are able to get those leaves cleaned up. Once we have done that I will post more photos of it.
Having a lawn at home is not as tough as maintaining it. Lawn maintenance should be properly managed so homeowners wouldn’t end up spending more amount of money than creating or designing a new one. A well tended lawn doesn’t have to be a burden especially if you know how to pick the appropriate service provider that will take care of your precious greens ---and those greens in the pocket as well.Lawns doesn’t only make your landscape look good, a number of benefits can be derived from these little greens. They are not only visually pleasing, they can boost property value, enrich the soil, cool the environment, and protect the earth from soil erosion. Homeowners can choose to maintain their own lawns or go with the option of hiring lawn care service.
Homeowners and property owners must provide consistent care and perform the right task at the right time to have their lawns in perfect shape.
Lawn mowing in Plymouth suggests that you water the lawn deeply once a week when dry conditions prevail with at least 2 inches deep. Apply only the recommended fertilizer depending on the grass type that you have and quality of soil you are using. Applying fertilizers in correct and equal shade could give you a uniform color.
Lawn care in Livonia, lawn care in canton, and lawn care in Plymouth has one thing in common in treating your greens to its healthiest condition, and that is making sure the fertilization contains the three main nutrients: nitrogen for color, phosphorous for healthy roots, and potassium for resistance against cold and drought.
Determine the amount of nutrients needed by the lawn in congruent to the acidity level of the soil, this way you can have a perfect pH balance. Lawn maintenance in canton uses soil test kit to determine the acid level of the soil to check the appropriate fertilization requirement of your lawn.
Control weeds that over-power your lawn against moisture absorption and nutrient balance. Over crowded roots could hinder the growth of a healthy lawn. And mow your lawn in different direction and leave your clipped lawns behind – they are good source of organic fertilizer.
Hire a lawn maintenance professional who is qualified for the job in performing lawn care, Experience and a good track record is important qualities but being an environmentalist at the same time could really stand out. A service professional should understand the importance of a chemical free and healthy residential environment, after all, the yard is where most of the kids do their playing and recreational activities.
If you are one of those lucky people who already have a perfect garden but having a hard time maintaining their lawn, you will be pleased that many company if offering their expertise and experience in taking care of your lawn problems. Whether it be the greens on your garden or the greens in your pocket makes no difference because most of them are affordable yet dependable in many ways.
So this year, I've decided that since I have so much free time being unemployed, I'd invest that into my garden. . .and maybe end up saving a little money while I'm at it. I figured I would document this experiment and share with everyone because I've invested a lot of time into this so far, so this blog may save someone else the time and energy I'ev already invested.
I took inventory of the seeds leftover from last year (all the way back to 2006, actually), and I came up with a huge list of seeds we're missing (I am a little ambitious with the amount of space that we've got dug so far).
Seeds we had:
1. Poppies from my auntie's yard
2. Dwarf Grey Sugar Peas (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
3. Sugar Sprint Edible Pod Brush Pea (Ed Hume seeds, packed fo 2006)
4. Green Leaf Lettuce (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
5. Rosemary (Ferry-Morse seeds, packed for 2010)
6. Lincoln Homesteader Peas (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
7. Early Prolific Straightneck Squash (Sow 'n' Grow seeds, packed for 2006)
8. Russian Red Kale (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
9. Red Core Chantenay Carrots **Organic** (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
10. Little Finger Carrots (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
11. Italian Basil (Burpee seeds, packed for 2006)
12. Garlic Chives (Burpee seeds, packed for 2006)
13. Detroit Supreme Beets (Burpee seeds, packed for 2009)
14. Golden Beets (Burpee seeds, packed for 2009)
15. Scarlet Nantes Carrots (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
16. Gourmet Salad Greens (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2006)
17. Black Beauty Zucchini Squash (Sow 'n' Grow seeds, packed for 2009)
18. Sparkler Radish (Sow 'n' Grow seeds, packed for 2009)
19. Common Sage, Salvia Officinalis (Burpee seeds, packed for 2006)
Seeds we've bought so far:
1. Purple Poppies to mix in with the red ones from Auntie's garden
2. Purple Coneflower, Echinacea Purpurea (Botanical Interests, packed for 2011)
3. Dill (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2011)
4. Celery, Utah 52-70 Improved (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2011)
5. Green Zebra Tomatoes (Botanical Interests seeds, packed for 2011
6. Mallow, Malva Moschata Rosea, (Livingston Seed Co, packed for 2011)
7. Cayenne Pepper, Capsicum Annuum (Botanical Interests seeds, packed for 2011
8. Cilantro (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2011)
9. Tokyo Long White Green Onions (Botanical Interests, packed for 2011)
10. Yomogi, Japanese Mugwort, kui hao (Kitazawa Seed Co, packed for 2010)
11. Husk Tomato, Ground Cherry (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2011)
12. Arugula, Rocket Astro (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2011)
13. Akarenso, Japanese Spinach Hybrid, horenso (Kitazawa Seed Co, packed for 2010)
14. Leeks, Large American Flag (Ed Hume seeds, packed for 2011)
15. Lemon Cucumber Cucumis Sativus (Botanical Interests, packed for 2011)
16. Sun Gold Tomatoes (Botanical Interests, packed for 2011)
Seeds/plants still left to buy:
1. Potatoes (I'm actually thinking about buying the potatoes from the store. . .since I try and buy local produce, those potatoes should do well in my region and are probably a whole lot cheaper than buying them from seed companies, AND I get to evaluate the taste of each one before committing to grow it for a whole season and figure out at the end that I don't like them)
2. Thai Basil
3. Thyme (Common, Lemon and Wild)
4. Lemon Balm
5. Lemon Verbena
8. Tarragon (I'm pretty sure I cannot grow this one from seed, if I recall correctly)
9. Summer Savory (maybe winter, too)
10. Catnip (for the kitty)
15. Ruta (maybe)
16. Nigella (if I can get my hands on the seeds)
18. Tomatillos (torn between the purple and the pineapple)
I told you it was an amibtious list! I started some of the seeds (more on that in the next post), but I am still waiting on my gosh darned seed catalogs to show up (thank you, Territorial Seeds, for dragging this torture out!). Until then, I just have my seeds and dogs to keep me company while I pine for those catalogs and hopefully complete my list. And then I get to think about flowers (well, more flowers)!
Guides, Instructions, and Recipes
Start by getting your hands on a credible recipe book, website, or blog post about home canning, since different goods take different processes. A tried and true guide for all canners is the Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving.
Acquire the appropriate tools. You’ll be surprised that you already have half of them: a funnel, tongs, pot holders, measuring spoons, and common utensils. You’ll also need a boiling pot and canning rack. Everything else you need, you can find at a Lowes, and you’re well on your way.
Prepare the Produce
Prepare the fruits or vegetables from your edible garden. This means washing thoroughly. Many people shy away from the home canning idea because of whispers of botulism. The truth is, however, that home canning has come a long way and a proper set of instructions won’t steer you wrong. A pressure cooker will also help you achieve the right temperatures to seal the cans properly.
The canning process differs from produce to produce. Follow the directions you’ve acquired carefully.
When you’ve stored your produce according to the instructions in a jar, make sure the band and lid are airtight. If you’re thinking about giving jams, jellies, preserves, salsas, and the like to friends and family as just-because gifts or presents during the holidays, you have a couple of options. You can use jars that already come with designs and colorful lids, or you can cut a square of pretty fabric, like from an old (clean!) handkerchief, and tie it onto the lid using a pretty ribbon or twine. Cut out a square of heavy paper and either print or handwrite the label: what’s in the jar, a little message, to Joe, from Jane; that kind of thing. Don’t forget to write or print the date of canning, too. Use a hole puncher to open a hole in the paper to allow the twine or ribbon to thread through.
First Day In The Garden
The weather was beautiful and since there is so much to do in preparation for the vegetable garden as well as the flower garden I spent most of the day in the yard. Weeds to pull, lawn to mend and mow, sidewalks to edge, patio to fill with potted flowers and planning. It felt good to be outside in the fresh air. There is something to be said for getting dirty, smelling the earth with the breeze in my hair and the sun on my face. The last of which gave me a slight sunburn – go figure – in April!
I am well known for unique combinations of colors and plants in the pots I place around the patio. Although most of the more interesting plants I use aren’t yet available this early in the season I couldn’t help buy but a few of the typical varieties for a colorful pot or two. I can bring them in at night if it gets too chilly. And of course I had help from the pups and interference from the cat. Well, in reality I had interference from them all but Sharkey, in her usual way, looks as if she’s lending a hand.
In one of the pots I used some flat leafed parsley. In my experience parsley likes to take over the herb garden and I have better luck putting it in pots with my flowers. Here it stays a bit more manageable. I don’t cook with as much parsley as I do the basil, cilantro, and other herbs so it’s a good option. It also fills in quite nicely and doesn’t seem to mind when I pinch it off here and there.
I weeded about forty feet of what will be the flower garden, checked the roses – I think I lost one, but will give it a bit longer to bud. The clematis vines are on their way back and this morning there were crocus blooming and what looks like grape hyacinth and tulips coming up! This part of the garden encompasses about 140 feet in total. There’s lots of work to do.
Chickens are HOT!
Chickens are all the rage. Urban, suburban and rural homeowners from every part of the country are ordering chickens in all sorts of fancy breeds. Competition over the cutest coops is escalating rapidly and people are signing up for classes on how to raise healthy and happy flocks in smaller spaces!
Why the sudden craze? Home-raised chickens, like homegrown vegetables seem to put
us in touch with a past of a more rural nature. Besides providing food
they give us a sense of self-sufficiency. Whatever the urge to gather the feathered flock it
recalls a simpler time when
we are more connected with nature and our food as part of it. Let me
comment on the ‘simpler’ statement. After all is said and done it’s much
simpler to go to the grocery store and buy a dozen eggs notwithstanding
there’s a much better use for a Jacuzzi tub than as an abode for a
small flock of chicks. But so much less satisfying! Our gardening
advisor Jeff Oberhaus suggested that by the time he deducts the cost of his
chickens, feed and hen-house
his eggs cost him about $9.00 a dozen! And he has to collect them
One chicken will lay an average of 300 eggs in a twelve month period. With four chickens it looks as though I can anticipate twenty three eggs a week. Since I would never consume that many it's a great way to share with family and friends or sell at the local farmers market.
My main goal, as with the garden itself, is the higher quality of food value, the organic nature of raising my own produce, and the future independence it can bring. The nutrition benefits are outstanding. In contrast to grocery store eggs, home-raised eggs have twenty-five percent more vitamin E, seventy-five percent more beta-carotene, significantly more omega-3 fatty acids and a third more vitamin A.
So, The Author’s Garden gains four chicks and I delve into research to learn what I need to know. I'll give you all a heads up on the books I find most informative. Stay tuned for more adventures with Henrietta, Blackie, Priscilla and Dot and their benefits to the garden. In the meantime the Jack Russell’s are scheming and dreaming about take-out chicken!
More about the coop design and
how it fits into the garden in future blogs!
Photos by Susan R. Stoltz copyright 2010
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