Saturday, March 23, 2019

Welcome Spring!

Good Morning! Happy Spring! Its a beautiful day here, today, finally my tomatoes will be in the ground. Hopefully so will peppers, and I will finally get my peas planted. I hope its not to late. It has been a busy week trying to get caught up with the work so we can get to the fun stuff. I have all of my flowerbeds cleaned around the house, now to add mulch. I planted zinnias this week in one of the flowerbeds. I have a few more plants in my seed tray that were just to small to plant.
I did get my melons planted too.

So far I have planted a melon called Tigger melon from Baker Creek Seeds. Some other melons like cantaloupe and honeydew and I plan on growing them on a trellis. Just to see how they grow. The one thing we have been able to always grow here is melons. The last time we grew them our kids said, "Please, no more melons."

The other day I walked up on the porch and there on the wall was this little bat.  He slept there all afternoon. Then about twilight, I was sitting there watching and he just woke up and flew away. I have always wanted to see one close up. This is really how tiny he was, when I first saw him I thought it was a big moth.
We also had a swarm of bees show up. They are now in the wall of my shed out there. We are going to have to take the outside part off to get them out if we can. We were waiting for them to settle down before we messed with them. The bee hive is all set up just waiting. I am so glad I kept all of my stuff from my last bee experience. These are very mellow bees. Unlike the kind I had last time that were part killer bee I am sure. Every time I gave them water, they would sting me. I couldn't even walk around them without five wanting to fight.
This bunch is much calmer and act like normal bees. They just can't live in my shed. I am so excited about them. Do you know how good my fruit and garden will do with bees this close to pollinate! Sasha was a young dog the last time we had bees, and she is so allergic to them. I had to keep Benadryl on hand so I could keep her from getting sick. They hated her on sight. These new bees haven't done anything to her and I saw her watching them yesterday and they didn't try to fight her, so these are a good fit.

The trees are finally blooming. For the last 10 years or so they bloomed in late February. This year has been perfect. I just love seeing everything blooming. We have planted 10 fruit trees this year. Ron is going to graft onto our crabapple trees. Our crabapple trees are nicely established so it will be interesting to see what happens.

I bought my own birthday present this year. I have wanted one of these for years. I love my hula hoe, don't get me wrong, but this is the machine for living here. I did almost the whole place yesterday. I was so proud of myself. Though last night was a different story. I got 3 outdoor bikes on my fitbit yesterday and 171 minutes of exercise. Plus the best 20,325 steps. I have never got that before.

Ron was on the tractor and I was doing this and its just amazing to me how much we can get done.
Last year, Ben did all of this with a weed eater. Poor guy, this is so much better. I can't wait to use it again.

I just took my muffins out of the oven now I can put on my farm girl hat and get outside and play in the dirt.
Have a wonderful day,
“What a happy woman I am, living in a garden, with books, babies, birds and flowers, and plenty of leisure to enjoy them. Sometimes I feel as if I were blest above all my fellows in being able to find happiness so easily."
(Quoted from Elizabeth and Her German Garden by Elizabeth von Arnim)”
― Rosamunde Pilcher, The Shell Seekers

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Little plants and gardening

Happy Almost Spring!! This is the first spring since I have lived here that feels like a real spring. Gardening is so rewarding. I love it because it made me aware of the seasons. Living in town, it just wasn't something I paid attention to, it could also be that when I was in the middle of raising six kids, I had little time to think about the weather.

Our purty lettuce

I was thinking today as I walked around the garden. Looking at everything. When was my first garden? I suppose I always had a garden. Who hasn't raised radishes and because I forgot to water them, were really hot but really good because I had grown them. My other things I did once was made raisins on top of my Dad's storage shed. Of course they tasted better too.

  When Ron and I married, soon to be 39 years ago, our first little bit of dirt was at our apartment. We loved that little bit of soil. Ron was driving by one day and a lady was getting rid of her iris bulbs and he stopped and planted them in our little garden. When we bought our first house, the first thing we did was put in a tiny little garden in our backyard. I was so amazed at the food I grew from that little 10x10 piece of dirt.

I found this picture, this would be about our fourth garden. This is our two oldest. You can see the garden in the background.

 It must have been about 1985 or so.  So gardening has always been apart of my life. I have kept myself busy growing things. Whether is was fruit or vegetables or babies. All of the babies have crawled around in the garden while I was weeding or picking or even when I was canning all of the home grown food.

Our onions are growing nicely.

Just on a whim I bought purple potatoes. They are finally coming up. You can see their tiny little leaves.

Finally some little beets. I was beginning to think I couldn't grow beets. I have had three failed crops I think now. I know why now. Beets don't like the any heat hotter than 85 degrees. Out here in this garden sometimes it can get up to 120 degrees out in the pasture on really hot days. So poof, they just burn up. Hopefully it will stay cool enough this year I can get a crop before the heat gets here.

The berry canes are beginning to wake up. This makes me so happy.

This is a russet or a red potatoes I can't remember which one but they are growing much better than the purple ones.

Its going to be a nice day. I have to get weeds chopped and more seed planting. This weekend we have a couple of 75 or 80 degree days. I am so excited to be out in the warm weather. Now you won't hear me talking like this come June. I hope your day is lovely and you are looking forward to spring.

Thank you for stopping by today,

 "Of all the wonderful things in the wonderful universe of God nothing seems to me more
surprising than the planting of a seed  in the blank earth and the result thereof."

---Celia Thaxter

Friday, March 8, 2019

Wet and Muddy March

I have to tell you this picture isn't from this year. For the first time in years and years, our trees are still asleep. I would say the past five years our trees would be blooming in the middle of February. I would just feel so hopeless about it because then the winds of March would come and so much of the fruit would be blown off. I am so glad they are still asleep. A few blooms here and there but not much else.

We had a huge rain storm the other night. All I need are a few ducks in my pond. It just amazes me how much rain we have had this year. I did notice when I walked out there this morning, I have some beets up and some potatoes. Its too wet to get out there right now. But that tells me the ground is beginning to warm up.

I had to take my tomatoes out of the bathroom/greenhouse. That is how I think of it now. They had reached the grow lights. Now I have to stake them up. Its too wet and to cold to put them out in the garden. This happens every year, I either get chicks too early or plant seeds to early. At least I haven't got my chicks this early yet.

They are going to live on my dining room table for a while. I have some more tomato seeds I want to get planted and some melon seeds. Ron was out of town for work this week, and he came home sick. All the guys he works with are sick too. Its that fever, aches and cough. So I can't go in and take pictures of the pepper and zinnia seedlings. It is amazing though. I have never grown anything in my life that well, I guess you could say, grew like that seed pack says. I have weeds because of all of the rain almost as tall as me. This is when I wish I had a herd of goats.

This was our sunrise the other morning. I thought it was just incredible and it proved the saying correct, because it was a terrific storm. We might have a dry day tomorrow.

I made this with some lemons to go in my tea. Here is the link
Just layer the lemons with sugar and press down and it makes the nicest lemon/sugar for hot tea.
I still have lemons and oranges coming out of my ears this year. I really need to jump on it and get the rest of the trees picked because the citrus trees are waking up. That never happens. The stone fruit trees are always first and this year they aren't.

I sat down at the computer so many times to write a blog, and poof, no idea what I was going to write about since all I do right now is dream of gardens and seeds and flowers. I guess its called spring fever.

I can never go wrong with Celia Thaxter and her wonderful garden.

These are some of my current reading materials. With Ash Wednesday and Fat Tuesday this week. I signed up to do a devotional with Max Lucado online. This is one of my favorite books to read on the lead up to Easter.
 That book Carrots Love Tomatoes has become one of my favorite reads. The lady who wrote it Louise Riotte is so knowledgeable and I really love to read and learn. I was lucky enough to get all of her books from the library.
The art work in my copy of An Island Garden by Celia Thaxter is just beautiful.

Here is my favorite poem by her.

"O happy, happy morning!
O dear, familiar place!
O warm, sweet tears of Heaven,
Fast falling on my face!
O well-remembered, rainy wind
Blow all my care away,
That I may be a child again
This blissful morn of May."
---Celia Thaxter

Gardens I think are the very best place to be and to have a wonderful ground in which to plant and dream and watch things grow. I wake up now with ideas of our garden on my mind.

I hope you have a lovely weekend, thank you for stopping by,

Dreaming of April---
Where is the face I long to see
Pictures of her in my mind
They say that she will soon return

I know she'll be here any day now
Just breezing into the room
Her sweet perfume can send my senses

Dreaming of April
Praying for her to arrive in all her finery
I'm dreaming of April
Maybe she'll linger this time
Turning to smile at me
These clouds of grey march in endless procession
I'm waking every day
Dreaming of April

I never know how blue the sky
Until the dark days came
These wistful words keep whispering

How much I used to take for granted
The beauty of her eyes
Till mine grew dim with winter, now I'm

Dreaming of April
Praying for her to arrive in all her finery
I'm dreaming of April
Maybe she'll linger this time
Turning to smile at me
When these days of grey march in endless procession
I'm waiting for a change
And dreaming of April

Out of the Grey- From the Album Gravity by Christine Dente