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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Looking backwards in time .. to a sunny day in June!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Well, I really want to talk about my garden.  Started looking through my photos and perused some sunny days in June when D and I went seaweeding in Sooke.  Our good friend R joined us in September, I think, and I have some good photos from that time and will post later.

Anyway, it was a midweek day and D & I set off to Sooke.  Looking forward to spending time on the beach, harvesting some seaweed for the garden.  Breathe in the fresh air and just spend some time away from the reality of daily life.  So, it was a sunny day, see this beautiful sky ..

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It was early in the day and the tide was way out there .. we could walk for miles along the shoreline .. see the seaweed covered rocks.   Lots of sea lettuce.   I’ve seen people just hacking away at these and stuffing huge bags full .. to use in restaurants.   That is just so wrong.  D & I, having taken seaweed courses, know that you just carefully trim a leaf from a plant, leaving the rest to continue growing on the rocks.
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Such an eerie feeling, really .. to walk along these rocky shores that normally are full of water, too deep for me to ever enter when the tide is in.  I am so grateful for this experience.

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Tide is coming in .. the hidden sea creatures can now escape their hiding places and cavort about in the salty brine of the ocean.

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And here is D .. she’s found a lovely kelp, the fronds are still attached.  The plant itself is ok to harvest, it is not still growing.   Treasure indeed, my garlic thanks you.

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Yum yum .. says my lovely garlic .. more than 60 minerals in seaweed .. enriches the soil quality and adds taste to the garlic.

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And the Elephant Garlic mumbles a gnarly thanks also … it is too busy growing to pay us much attention!02

 

Later we wandered along this lovely wooden walkway that stretched over the waters of Sooke …16

 

And along the way we saw this happy family busy throwing their crab traps … they would carefully check the size of the crabs and any too small or too large would be cast back into the ocean.

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Don’t these branches remind you of a giant dinosaur or a monster of some type?

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The beautiful blue skies continued overhead .. how lovely is this ..18

 

Saw some magnificent trees along the switch back walkway that led us down to the ocean .. strong, beautiful trees .14

 

Loving the contrast of light and shadow.  The Yin and the Yang.  The Positive and the Negative.  Balance in all things.  Too much of one is boring, but a subtle mix is seductive and interesting, non?15

 

 

A last look at the shoreline .. and it was nearly time to leave.

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Back home, in between unloading the seaweed and moving to the back yard, I just had to stop and admire busy bees cavorting in the lupines.

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And the red-hot poker plants … the birds and insects love these blooms.23Sigh .. that was a lovely visit back to June .. especially in this winter.  Although, the weather in Victoria, BC today was sunny, there was some chill, but not much.  So we can’t complain.   And must not boast, you know.  But we all do enjoy this lovely weather.  And I, for one, just plain dream of next spring and summer.

 

 

 


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Saturday, July 13, 2013

The hot sunny weather continues … these are the lovely long days of summer!  Here’s a pic of my first attempts at braided garlic.  As I went along, braiding rope after rope, I began to imagine how easy it would be to incorporate coloured ribbon, flowers, all sorts of things.   That will be my goal for next year.

For now, I’m happy with the rustic look.   These will be gifts to friends .. and for me, a reminder of the summer.  A complete day given up to sorting this years garlic crop.  Hours spent, trimming the roots, brushing away the surplus soil.  Sorting into sizes and beginning my attempts at braiding!  A very happy day.  Oh .. and I must select the largest cloves for planting this fall!

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All the garlic is now braided or bunched and hanging to continue the drying.   I stood there amongst the garlic … savoring the tranquility and enjoying the feeling of accomplishment.  Oh, and I also dreamed a bit.  Of moving to a place with more land so I could grow more garlic.  I’m also growing shallots, they are easy to grow .. so would like to plant more of that also.  A gal has to have a dream, right?

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One of the zillion busy bees in the garden.  Industrious creatures are bees …

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Shasta daisy .. a cheerful sight to behold in the front yard.  Modest flowers, I don’t notice them growing away until they burst into flowers adding so much beauty . . asking for nothing in return, save a bit of water in order to grow.

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The edible peas are growing into giants and I harvest some daily.  Still magical, isn’t it .. one little seed produces so much food.   And such beauty.   These vines have grown quite tall, over 6 feet in height.   I’ll be saving some seeds for next year, you can bet!

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I love this sky .. reminds me of a giant bowl of clouds being stirred around ..

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Now .. this is an impressive cloud …

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I watched as it evolved quickly, growing and spreading … see the cavern in the center?  There was rain hours later …

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A happy view of the suns rays beaming down onto this developing formation …

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My favourite channel to tune into .. the sky … every changing and breathtaking ..

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The Pawnee coming in for a landing .. it is the tow plane for the sailplane (glider).  Having released the happy pilot & passenger way up in the blue skies .. it will land in a few seconds.  Lovely plane.  Formerly used for crop dusting, now it has a happier life towing sailplanes!    The only thing that should be spread on crops is compost tea!

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Ohhhhh .. a baby, wispy cloud.. how ethereal …sky art.

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Look Dick, see Jane and hey Spot .. here is the Pawnee …

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Nothing cheers me up like the sky does.  No matter what is happening down here .. there is always something beautiful to see up there.  Not man-made .. just nature doing its thing!

Yesterday I spent some time bracing up my bean crop.   Using cut lengths of bamboo .. I made a makeshift frame and began running strings from the horizontal bamboo to tie onto the beans and peas to give them something to hold onto as they began their upward growth.

I was wearing my gardening outfit, muddy as usual and kneeling on the ground, focusing on ensuring that the string was snug when suddenly there was a flapping of tiny wings and a young sparrow landed on a length of bamboo that was just inches away from me.  I think it got caught in the strings and then decided to cling to the bamboo to get its bearings.   I scarcely dared to breathe and didn’t make any movements as we locked eyes .. Me looking at this tiny little innocent bird as it, in turn, stared, wide-eyed back at me.    Complete silence for a brief moment of time.

The little tiny feet couldn’t quite get a grip on the smooth surface of the bamboo and he twirled and swirled in graceful minute arcs, round and round.   Quickly he flew away and I, just as quickly, added some yellow plastic ties to warn other winged creatures that the strings were there.

Later on I stood quietly watching birds in the cherry tree .. munching away .. and saw the same sparrow.  It had to be the same one, as he continued to swing in circles around branches.  A fledgling member of the Cirque du Soleil, perhaps?

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There are always unexpected surprises in the garden.  Whether these be unexpected flowers, playful encounters with my feathered friends .. or something like this:

IMGP3603Honest to Pete, I had tried my best EM treatment with this Mexican Orange tree.  It was one that I had neglected and it was really nothing but a stick with a few branches, nothing green whatsoever.   I applied a liberal dose of EM about a month ago, but nothing happened.  I was going to chop it up for composting, but, just hadn’t gotten around to it.

Yesterday, moving things around in the back yard, I happened to see this strong new growth.

It was one of those magical gardening moments and I just felt again the impact of the forcefulness of nature, the resilience of plants (and the power of EM).     This was awesome and in so many ways it was a sign of encouragement and of not giving up.  Truly an inspirational moment and humbling at the same time.

A mini-miracle that gave me such joy.   And affirmed once again the positive power that we all discover in the garden.

🙂