Wednesday, May 27, 2015

What's in your Veggie Beds?

~ garlic ~
 We have lots of 'high cloud' - which makes taking photos difficult sometimes. Things are GREEN out here, so they all sort of blend in together...

While I've just planted (oh so late for me!) my new greenhouse beds, I do have other garden beds that have been planted, need to be replanted & are producing on a slow & steady level.

The garlic bed is being watered regularly right now, but in a few weeks I'll remove the drip line & allow the plants to dry in preparation for harvest. From the size of the stalks, it looks like I will have some large garlic this year!
~ potato ~

My potato bed has mustard greens growing that self-seeded from last year. I'm certainly not going to complain about those fresh greens growing wild!! Just means that I'll have to eat more of them...

The sage plant at the end of the bed is almost in full bloom - I'll harvest those stalks in the next week or 2 after the bees have received their full measure of sage pollen.
~ lettuce & greens ~

My other lettuce & greens bed looks like it did not like the return to cool temperatures & I'll have to go through most of the seedlings, remove those that are sending out flower shoots. They will not grow any more & can be eaten - roots, stalks & all.

This will allow me room to pop in other seeds to fill the holes & keep the production up for the season. Might consider planting winter greens here...

~ rose in veggie bed ~
My last veggie bed - the deepest one - has been a 'cutting bed' for a few years. Every time someone gives me a cutting of one of their plants, this is the bed I would put them into in order to develop roots.

Well, the bed is now overwhelmed with roses (such as this dainty little white rose) & hydrangeas & other odds & sods...

I have some transplanting projects ahead of me in order for me to prepare this bed for planting... I might be ready towards the end of the season, so maybe garlic in this bed in the fall is an easy solution & will allow me the time to transplant & move things around without too much damage to the current plants. It's really not a very good time of year to move plants around too much unless a proper watering schedule is in place to help re-establish the plants in their new homes.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Greenhouse Rebuild - Part 3

This morning I thought it was time to show what we've accomplished for the greenhouse project.

The beds are full of fresh new soil - lots of wonderful soil & compost & manure! Lovely stuff!! {wish I could get this stuff in by the dump truck & re-do ALL the veggie & flower beds...}

Yesterday we installed the drip line & I planted-planted-planted many seeds & some herbs I rescued from elsewhere.

How easy it is to go out, turn on the water & soak the beds!! I now don't have to expose myself to the early morning or late evening bugs & I know that things will be watered with some consistency...

Now - get growing!! All we need is some sunshine & warmer temperatures...

Monday, May 25, 2015

When Spring turns into Summer

~ poppy ~
May is almost finished! Where did the time go? We are now entering into the summer season & I'm really not ready for it...

The flower beds continue to grow & evolve on their own & this year, I've delayed planting much in my veggie beds due to the cool temperatures & lack of sunshine.

More updates are coming... I'm in love with the wild-ness of the yard this year & look forward to showing you...
~ rose ~

~ iris ~

~ pink columbine ~

~ chives ~

~ white columbine ~

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Spring Disappeared but Forgot to Tell Anyone

~ yellow iris ~
 The spring weather has been 'interesting' & a bit of a challenge this year. It has cooled down & remained cloudy & even foggy for most of the month & those rains that we usually get to help get new plants & seedlings on their way, hasn't returned...

This is going to be 'one of those years' where the weather will remain unpredictable - which, for a gardener can be frustrating as those great weather days perfect for gardening usually fall during those days when working elsewhere is required...

So, with cool weather, lack of proper rain - but lots of dew still - it's difficult to find the energy & enthusiasm to get into the gardens proper... I tend to take short excursions to take photos & check that what I do have seeded is taking care of itself. Right now, the flowers are putting on a show. I'll have to take some time to update the veggie gardens & where I'm at with the greenhouse project.
~ apple blossoms ~

~ comfrey in bloom ~

~ perennial bachelor button ~

~ pink flowering dogwood ~

~ pink flowering dogwood ~

~ pink flowering dogwood ~

~ lilac ~

Sunday, April 26, 2015

My Garden Shadow

~ Nola ~
I have a new Garden Shadow this year. Her name is Nola & she's a lovely little Cairn Terrier.

Last year it was a group of ducks, this year it's a wee little dog who loves to be outside, investigating every weed I dig up, every plant I cut & every edible I harvest. She will gladly try to eat anything I am harvesting, only to find out that right now, herbs & greens are not what she was hoping for... Wait til the berry season arrives!!

She'll pop up right in my face in between the flowers & remain either under hand or under foot while I'm working away. Right now, I'm gently training her to stay out of the beds so she doesn't trample the young plants. Thankfully, she's not yet figured out the joy of digging in the dirt!! I'll let her dig in the tide pools down at the beach (looking for crabs or snails), so maybe that will not be an issue we need to worry about.

I'd like to think she enjoys the walk-abouts looking at the flowers just as much as I do. She certainly has a nose for them!
~ forget-me-nots ~

~ perennial bachelor button ~

~ raindrops on columbines ~

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Life Becomes More Simple - Finally...

~ drip hose with potatoes & greens ~
This year I've finally installed a drip line in my veggie beds. I picked some up last year, but just didn't find the energy to install it. Took minutes... literally...

So, with the simple aid of a timer for the water flow, I've got the summer drought months taken care of! No more hauling out the hose to spend rushed minutes at the end of the day, covered in swarming-biting insects to water plants that should have been watered in the morning... No more throwing hands up in the air saying 'I just can't grow that' because I chose not to water...

Of course, there is always a bit of fine tuning to be done throughout the growing season, such as: water pressure - too high? too low? One bed requires more water, one bed requires less water. Are the plants at the edges of the bed getting enough water? How much water will I actually be using during those weeks in July & August when we have absolutely no rain & the rain barrels are empty?

I look forward to finding out the answers to all of this!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Grow Your Own Fertilizer!

~ comfrey ~
I've mentioned this before, but growing comfrey is such a benefit to your gardens, you'll actively search out this 'weed' growing in the wild just to dig up & bring home. I've got them planted inbetween some berry bushes, in hard to mow spots of the lawn & in areas that should be left to grow wild.

I use the leaves whole as mulch or chopped up with a lawn mower (that's at the end of the season when they are ratty looking) tossed into the composter (an activator), or tossed into a bucket with water to make comfrey compost tea.

The purple flowers are a huge attractant to insects, especially bees, & can be eaten in salads. The small tender leaves can also be eaten in spring salads & taste like cucumber.

If you have ducks or chickens, they love this plant too, so if they run around the yard at all, provide a bit of protection around the plant or else the silly feathered garden helpers will eat the entire plant in one sitting... (been there, done that...)