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Tag Archives: gardening

A Walk in the Garden

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A Walk in the Garden

Today was a long day. I was frustrated after supper as I washed the dishes. I kept thinking that the sun was setting, I still needed to water my garden, and there’s that quilt I’m trying to finish, and I hadn’t even started the laundry. I had to bake this week’s bread, and make a batch of dog food on top of cooking supper. I was really starting to feel sorry for myself and get angry at everyone around me.

I took a deep breath and left the dirty dishes in the sink. I went out to the garden and had a look around. There are tiny watermelons on the vine and blackberries! The tomatoes are coming along nicely. My English lavender looks like it’s dying, but on closer inspection I saw new growth coming up in the middle. Just ten minutes outside to walk through the garden and see what’s growing and smell the scents of rosemary, gardenias, petunias, and lavender, proved to be enough to slow me down and bolster the good attitude I had all day long until after supper. I am thankful for all the good I’m surrounded with, and for the fact that tomorrow is another day!

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In The Garden

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In The Garden

I recently spent some time (okay, maybe a few days) watching videos about English Gardens. The English are amazing. Every one of them interviewed talked about how, when they inherited or bought their properties, the properties were either overgrown or just meadow grass. Every one of them have been working their gardens for 30 plus years. Their grass is a luxurious carpet that one gardener dismissively claims “it’s just meadow that’s been mowed.”

What?! Do you know how much money we spent “installing” our lawn?

They all talk about how they go on garden vacations around the world and bring back plants that they need to find homes for in their gardens. While writing about it makes me a bit angry and more than a little envious, I didn’t feel this way while watching the videos because the English are like that–they embody all things civil for me. Their accents and their slightly self-deprecating manner is OH, so charming!

I have been enamored with the English since I read The Little Princess in the fourth grade. The Secret Garden deepened my admiration. Other books–and even movies, have since sealed my fate. I have to admit that the character I most relate to would be the humble Hobbit. I love to spend my days caring for my home, cooking food, and, of course, eating. My love for gardening, however, surpasses all of these things. I started reading anything I could get my hands on about gardening when my mother first subscribed to Martha Stewart’s Living magazine back in 1990. We lived in a three bedroom condominium, and my mother’s only garden was a six-foot by 10 foot lanai upon which she kept dozens of potted orchids, ferns, chili peppers, and lemon grass.

After getting married, I lived in an apartment, a couple of town homes, and a house–all rentals with tiny yards and existing landscaping. I continued to read gardening books, and dream of a day when I would own my own little piece of land and be able to create my own garden. We now pay the bank for our home that sits on 2.4 acres of a partially wooded lot.

I’ve started VERY slowly. I had a professional install landscaping in the front of the house four years ago (we’ve lived here for 5 years). I had them shape planting beds around three sides of the house and cover them with landscape fabric and pine straw. A few crepe myrtles and yews, some gardenia bushes, and one lonely dwarf magnolia were planted.

My kids and I installed a vegetable garden that same year. I built four raised beds out of pine and hauled garden soil and gravel that I had a local company deliver. That year and the next, we had LOTS of organic produce to eat. The third year the stink bugs, the deer, and the rabbits ate or destroyed pretty much everything in the vegetable garden. Last year, I was too depressed with medical issues to do much gardening.

SO…after watching those videos on Netflix, I was all inspired to start gardening again. I mean REALLY gardening. I went to the local hardware store with a $100 budget for plants to add to the front planting beds. My goal is to pack those beds so tightly that the weeds won’t grow, and I wouldn’t have to spend so much money on mulch. I got home, and immediately put my plants in the ground and realized $100 is NOTHING. I must re-think my strategy and re-read some of those old gardening books. I will be sharing my experiences here in the hopes of garnering advice and tips. 😉

The Best Mother’s Day in a Long Time

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The Best Mother’s Day in a Long Time

Happy Mother’s Day to all! While yanking weeds out of the veggie garden by the handful, I made some plans in my head for a new perennial border and a shade garden.  My yard and garden has sat for the last 18 months unattended.  My hubby mowed the lawn and that is it.

I have been working on edging along the driveway with the weed whacker for the last two days.  I can only go for 45 minutes or so before my elbows and my wrists start to lock up.  My shoulders start to creep up to my ears, and I just need to stop.  I know I should probably find a YouTube video on how to use a trimmer correctly…hmmm, maybe tomorrow.  I told my daughter I try to do yard and garden work when all the neighbors have left for work, and that way they won’t think I’m weirder than I really am.

My plan is to reverse the flow of my shop vac and use it to blow the leaves and pulled weeds out of the veggie beds (yes, I am that lazy, no, we don’t have a cool leaf blower). That was BEFORE I cut the extension cord with the hedge trimmer–again. DIY splicing–another YouTube research topic…maybe tomorrow.

After not feeling well for awhile, I am feeling like quite the hobbit. I took the photo from inside the vegetable garden because I am so ashamed I let it get away from me. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed your day! 🙂