My Life is really in the Garden

Enjoying and sharing the daily discoveries of the beautiful nature that surrounds me in my lovely garden and everywhere else!


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Enjoying the Beauty that is in my Garden!!

Pretty Pink Lupins!  I’ve kept these in a pot but just might plant them somewhere in a sunny spot so they can grow and prosper.  I’ll do that once they set seed and I will save some for the future!  27May 01Not far away is this lovely old rose bush .. the roots are deep so it doesn’t need much water at all .. my favourite kind of plant.  Once in awhile I’ll add some EM or some other nutrient .. liquid seaweed.  It’s a tough old plant and adds beauty and nectar for the bees and I’ve seen the Anna’s there also.27May02I planted some blue Columbines and now I see that there are pink ones also.  Love garden surprises.27May04The blue Columbines that I planted …years ago ..now flowering away like mad  .. a neighbour to the pinks!27May03So here I’m being “artsy” and applied a Slate shade to the blue Columbine.. glad that the flowers aren’t really this colour, but I do like the dreamy effect.27May11Some thornless blackberry flowers .. huge berries!!  I wonder if the Leafcutter bees have been active .. as I’ve noticed some circular indentations on a variety of leaves.  Busy Bees.27May05Sweet little Lady Jane .. this is one of her favourite places to have her treats.  She keeps running towards this little bench, sits and stares expectantly upwards .. “where is my picnic?27May06Where are the rest of my treats?????27May07I finally decided to try growing potatoes in straw, having read many online accounts of success.   I carefully unrolled some chicken wire, folded in half, lengthwise, inserted bamboo sections for the frame.   Added some organic seed potatoes and covered with the straw.   The potatoes had already started rooting when I planted them.  Added some water and now I’ll just wait to see how they grow and will keep adding straw as the plants grow.   I shovelled some soil on top, just a little bit.27May09These are the little potato sections that I had cut up, a few weeks ago, and planted them in little pots.  99% of them rooted and sprouted leaves .. see how strong the root section is!!  And also, I see a couple of bean plants in the cells  .. no idea where they came from as I had not planted them.  happy to see them, though.  Time will tell what kind of beans they are.   One of the joys of using homemade compost, I think!  the magic continues.27May10

I was out for a walk a few days ago, just had to stop and take a photo of one of the neighbourhood eagles.  I’ve seen them for quite a few years, watched them grow from the juvenile stage to adulthood.   Very convenient location, close to Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary.27May08Every year I shape-shift my veggie garden.  Every year I just cannot fathom how to come up with a new design .. and .. every year I do!  This year is the same.  We have had steady rains up until last week, so I haven’t gone outside to play.  Now the sun is here and I’m all excited about work in the garden.  It takes a few sessions outside before I’m really energized so patience is a virtue there.

If you’ve seen the photos of my previous years .. you’ll see a marked change.  I’ve removed most of the raised beds and planted my garlic in large pots.  To the left is the chicken wire potato circle.  At the front is another Lee Valley arbour and peas are growing up the sides.  I’ve planted some low growing berries in the little bricked areas (temporary brick formations).  And way behind is a frameworks for my beans to grow.  Then I’m removing the final raised bed.

Am in the midst of forming a bamboo teepee frame to create a little private space in the middle.  Where I can look out and only see green .. no houses at all!  and inside will be a little secret garden of sorts.   I’ll post more photos of my progress.  This is a real garden in the works, folks!27May12

Well .. time is running .. off to recycle, work in the garden and then my fiddle lesson!  The fiddle is lots of work but really gives me such joy.   I’m going through a little slump in energizing my discipline for practise but I know that this will pass.

🙂


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Sunny .. sort of .. Sunday .. my “winter sowing of summer seeds” is progressing very well.

I started my “winter sowing summer seeds” at the end of January.    Guidelines thanks to Kevin:  http://www.agardenforthehouse.com/2012/11/winter-sowing-101-6/

This year I carefully labelled everything, writing the type of seed neatly, with permanent ink, on garden markers.  And I wrote the dates and details of each seed that I sowed into a hard covered notebook.  How veddy veddy mature, wouldn’t you say!   Last year I emptied the full packets of seeds into the containers.  And the seeds grew so well that I had way too many seedlings. So this year, I only sowed partial envelopes.  Except for some wild flower seeds and nodding onions (which my pal D, gave to me).   I can be constrained for so long and then just throw caution to the wind, as it were.  Here are some of my containers.  I ran out of milk jugs and decided to use the clear containers from lettuce and berries .. they worked out just as well.  Many of the seeds that I started at the end of January have sprouted already!!

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Here is a container of glass chunks that I uncovered when I was digging and sifting the ground, a few years ago.  There used to be a glass factory in the neighbourhood and our property sits on a portion of it.  I’ve uncovered a few cement foundations that I was going to use for a garden feature, but decided that it wouldn’t work out well so I covered them up.  The greenish glass is rather pretty and I’ve been thinking how best to show them off to their best advantage.  Still working on that.

301I use a fair bit of coconut coir in the garden, buying blocks of the compressed material and I leave them outside to crumble in the rain.  Far better than using peat moss, which is a non-renewable product, compared to the readiness of coir.  The plant cell flat is just waiting for the seedlings to grow a bit bigger so I can prick them out of the milk jugs and plant them in these cells.

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Ah .. garlic.  This was the year when I was only going to grow garlic in just 2 areas of the yard.  I’d created 2 temporary garlic beds, creating circles with 2 levels of brick.  Wonderful new soil, mixed with glacial rock powder, coir, compost.   I’d placed way too much organic straw on the bulbs and had to remove most of it to allow the greens to welcome the rays of the sun.  So, here are my two garlic beds.

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However, as I still had lots of garlic left, I thought, why not plant a few more cloves?  So I did just that.  I created forms with bits of wood that my DH had in his workshop.  Fastened them together with screws, filled with the above mentioned soil and planted the garlic.  Ok, thus far.

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But, wait, I had a few more garlic cloves, sprouting greens, and I thought, what’s the harm in planting these.  So, this is part of the side of the yard.  Garlic happily growing there.  Lots of seaweed tucked around them.

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Then I noticed more cloves sprouting, so I planted a few more on the other side of the yard.  After this, I planted some more by the garden gate, but haven’t yet taken a photo.  I’m hopelessly in love with garlic.  And dream of growing much more than this.

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Last fall I wasn’t able to “tidy up” the yard and thus there is still lots of things to do.  I found a container into which I had tossed a pile of bulbs and had forgotten about them.  I discovered some interesting things.  One was that this tulip bulb, thrown upside down in the pot, was still determined to grow roots and see how they have grown!

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Another thing I discovered was the magic of bulbs.  Determinedly flowering away despite the lack of soil.  No care whatsoever.  So what’s a gardener to do?

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Well, I potted them up, that is what!  I think these are Muscari bulbs, quite pretty. Grow on, bulbs!

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I took time to walk around the yard.  And I stopped by one of my two dwarf weeping willows.  One is quite strong (this one) and the second is needing a bit more love and care, which I happily supply.

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How sweet are these diminutive little willow buds.

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There are a couple of Flickers who visit the yard.  They really seem to prefer one of the plum trees for some reason.  And at this time, one was hunkered down by a suet block.  He did spend some time wrapped around the suet container, plucking out lots of the suet and now he was taking a break.

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Later on, he perched onto the trunk of the wild and crazy tree.  He stayed there for quite a long time.  Whether resting, or hiding from a raptor .. I didn’t know … I just was happy that he had a place to rest.

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A short time later, I was unloading things from my car when I noticed this eagle flying overhead, so I quickly got out my camera and clicked away.

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And he landed atop a tree way down the road.

317I just stood there for awhile, leaning against my car, clicking away, while this majestic raptor looked around, patiently, for the next meal.

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When the eagle left .. the Coopers Hawk took up residence.

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It’s been an interesting time in the garden again …