Kia hora te manno
Kia whakapapa paumamu te moana
Kia tere te Karohirohi

May the calm be widespread
May the sea glisten like the greenstone
And may the glimmer of summer dance across your pathways

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

My little bit of whimsy

I am a sucker for yard art which I usually find at yard sales. This wee spot of garden is filled with all manner of "yard art"

There is a goose, and half a broken clay pot adding a little interest.

The lovely glass bird bath Mr C gave me for Christmas, takes pride of place.

Found three flower shaped stepping stones at a yard sale, but thought them too unstable to use as such, so they are for decoration only.

And this cute hedgehog was a bargain I found at a end of year sale at one of the large chain stores.
So there you have it, a little bit of my um! yard art, and there is plenty more of it scattered throughout the other garden areas.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Mini hoop houses over my raised beds

Early February I sowed lettuce, kale, pea and beet seeds in the first of my raised beds, and made a mini hoop house to protect them and provide them a cozy environment to get an early start. I am most pleased with the result, as you can see everything is growing extremely well.

Tomorrow I plan on thinning the lettuce. At the far end is a trellis, which will support the scarlet runner beans I planted today. I grow scarlet runner beans first for their wonderful flavor, and second, because they have the most beautiful scarlet flowers.

The mini hoop houses are very easy to construct using this tubing I bought from Ace hardware, some brackets and floating row cover to cover them once constructed.

Here is a bracket held in place with deck screws, and the tubing which has been cut to length, pushed down through the bracket. The same was done on the opposite side of the raised bed. It is very secure and does not flop over.

The whole structure is then covered using the floating row cover material which comes as a 5x50' piece and can be cut to fit. I use bricks to hold down the sides and wooden clothes pins to hold the two pieces together where needed.

This hoop house took only about 15 minutes to construct today. Growing here are bush beans, Swiss chard, which I over wintered, kale, peas at this end of the garden, and at the far end I will plant cucumbers when the weather is warmer, these will also have a trellis to climb.

I still have more cleanup to do, and hopefully tomorrow the weather will be as beautiful as it was today.

The two tires towards the rear, house strawberry plants the other three will be for tomatoes. I think the raised bed, bottom left, will be where I grow summer squash.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Bedraggled daffodils

My favorite daffs are starting to open up, but last night they were pelted by the downpour we had. I know as the day progresses, they will perk right up again.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

I would love to get my fingers dirtier

Oh Man! if only the sun would stay out for more than an hour at a time. Our spring has, for the most part, been dull and lacking in the sunshine department. My vegetable garden seeds have been sown in installments, in that, I have been sowing seeds every time there has been an hour, or even half an hour when it has not been raining or a very cold wind blowing.
Today I stood under the carport and re-potted the little tomato plants into the next size larger pots. I strip all but the topmost leaves off the tomato plants, and bury them up to just below the leaves in the new pots. More roots will grow from the buried stem making for a healthier plant. I will re-pot the tomatoes a couple more times until they are in gallon size pots, from there they will go out into the garden when the weather warms up. I did have plans to sow some parsnip seeds, but it started to rain and it does not look as as though it is going to let up any time soon. Oh well! I have lost the mood for gardening any more today so I think I will go and read for a while.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

I believe my 'thumbs are becoming greener'

2009 I purchased the lovely Fritillaria and placed it in with ferns in this wooden planter. Last year I moved it into my shaded "woodland garden"

April 2011 it has rewarded me with two much larger blooms on one stem. I had been told this is not the easiest of plants to grow, but it appears, it likes the conditions I have provided, and hopefully it will continue to grow into a larger plant with even more blooms.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011