Wednesday, August 29, 2012
August will only be with us for a few more days and I will miss this end of the summer. Our summer was only two months long and it really was wonderful. Once the summer heat began and the race was on to grow things in the garden.
I must admit that I hadn’t prepared my veggies for growing, depending on purchased plants. The proverbial “next year” sounds good to me right now! Well, next year, I will start in the spring to prepare the seedlings for planting. And … next year .. I will prepare little plastic houses for the tender plants.
This year, though, I am quite happy with the results of my garden. I definitely have one pumpkin and see a few others growing .. I still have another month for them.
And my cucumber plant has one cucumber, slowing maturing. It might be the only one. The basil plants are limping along. The lettuce is producing daily. Sweetpeas, late, but strong. Flowering and producing seeds for next year. Lovely plants.
My friend D has given me the most lovely planters … quite ornate, open metalwork, with coir linings. I dug through the soil and found some lovely sparklies and a little yellow lizard amongst the soil .. treasures!
I’m going to dig up some kale and put them in these containers … so they will continue to grow .. and I can start shape-shifting the mulch pile where they grew all summer.
Blueberries are still fruiting .. I have some late bearing bushes.
I’ve also started decluttering my garden supplies .. and today gave away hundreds of plant pots and over a dozen propagating trays. I had way too many .. how many do I really need! And so it’s fun to share with fellow gardeners.
Tomorrow I plan to finish clearing out my garden work area .. to sort out what I need and what I can give away. Feels great to do this.
I walked around my garden .. looking at the changes I made this year. Feel amazed that I actually planted all the plants that I purchased in the past few weeks. . that is a record for me and feels like I’ve accomplished quite a lot … and I have!
Spent hours today digging up dandelions in the back yard. Noticed that there were hardly any in the areas of lawn that were well watered and that there were so many in the drier patches. Interesting. I’ve put them all on a tarp, to dry in the sun and then I will add them to the compost bins.
The Italian prune plums are just dripping from the branches. I’ve been picking quite a few. Dehydrated some in the oven and quite a few were put on a pot to stew and then I’ll freeze some containers to use later as sauce for chicken or for a jam.
I’m quite enjoying this time of the year .. clearing up my garden areas. Watching the birds. I see the little Fox sparrow .. like a little sprite way up in the tree.
Yesterday and today I was treated to an aerial show of the Canada Geese as they flew overhead, en route to Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary for the night. I wonder if these are the spring-born goslings, all grown up …. preparing for their winter flight. They sound so strong and fly so well … my heart goes out to them. Theirs is a tough life of survival. I know that a lot of people don’t like Geese .. but none have harmed me. I’m smart enough to turn around and walk the other way when I’m confronted with them. Their beaks are very strong!
I watch little Youbou out in the yard, vigorously scratching away with his strong right leg. Hard to imagine that last spring he couldn’t walk on that leg .. for reasons unknown, despite the many veterinarian tests. Luckily acupuncture was able to help him. He’s no longer on Prednisone and has his acupuncture visits about once a month or so, just to keep him aligned.
The skies have been so beautiful to watch that it’s a wonder I get anything done in the yard when I’m out there! In the spring I gazed upwards to watch the eagles and now I watch for the Geese and the ever-changing panorama of beautiful shades of blue and white. sigh.
And finally, on Monday, I spent the day preparing my garlic for the winter. Set up my outside working tables and began the task of untying the bunches of garlic from beneath the sundeck, where they have been drying and curing for a month. Noticed that quite a number of scapes escaped me! How did that happen, anyway! I was so sure that I’d clipped every scape to make pesto!
Just like last year, I was sure that I didn’t have enough, but when all were cleaned up and put in baskets, I realized I have more than enough. Enough to cull the largest for planting next month. Enough to send some to my sister back east. Enough for us. Enough to share. So I’m happy about that.
And the hardnecks have these little yellow cloves, they look like kernels of corn. I’ve read that these can be planted for spring greens. And I’ve read that they also can be grown for several years to reach the size of a garlic bulb.
Speaking about enough .. I started thinking about all the work I’ve done over the past few years. Gathering oak leaves from properties. Filling bags, stuffing them in my car. Taking them home, starting the dance of moving them from the car to the back yard and then mulching them. Ordering bales and bales of spoiled hay .. wonderful for mulching in the yard.
What if I don’t feel like doing that this year?
Well, I’m not worried. Because I have 3 compost bins. Lots of lovely soil already in the yard. And I really and truly depend on my EM to save the day! As long as I continue to prepare my batches of EM .. I will always have the most fertile, rich garden!
Well, I’ve been enjoying the days this week .. working had and accomplishing a lot. Feeling quite pleased with the progress of my garden. And looking forward to making more changes. And taking time to watch the birds … listening to the cheerful little nasal chirps from the Bushtits, Nuthatches, Chickadees, Fox and other sparrows. And the energetic antics of the Anna’s. And hoping to get a closer glimpse of the Geese as they soar overhead.
Another lovely day!