Archive for the ‘Garden Booyah’ Category

July has to mean better things for my garden

I realized during the past week that I need a New Year’s resolution of sorts for July. It’s time I pay better attention to my garden. That is, of course, if I want anything to come of it this summer.

The weeds I wrote about almost two weeks ago were the least of my problems. While I was watching soccer and basketball games during the month of June, I also was neglecting several other crops, which dearly paid the price. By the time I got around to caging the tomatoes, most were too big for the cages I had. The rain and wind (and a bit of hail) on June 18 had battered two of them pretty badly, leaving the stems of one split to the ground (photo at right). When I tried to cage a second one, I broke off at least 4 of the bigger branches — some which had lots of flowers.

As I moved from plant to plant, my heart pounded harder and harder. My first major mistake of the summer and it had to be with my favorite veggie — the biggest reason why I plant a garden. I couldn’t believe it – I wanted to cry. I eventually stopped trying to cage them for fear I would break off too many more branches.

While lamenting my predicament with neighbor Jack (who of course had his tomatoes caged weeks before), Continue reading

The garden shack – does it have a future?

This year, we have to do something about the garden shack. Before the roof totally caves in and damages the tiller and all my other gardening tools and, I say this lovingly, other junk we store in it.

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The previous owners built it as a working observatory. The top, white portion of the silo-shaped structure rotated, we’ve been told, and stargazers looked up at the night sky through the vertical portion that juts out (top right in photo). It must have been pretty cool in its day, but not so much anymore.

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Bulbs ordered for my new flower garden — I hope!

So I’ve been slacking this past week. Meant to get all my bulbs ordered, but I had problems with two separate websites. When I called one of the companies, I was told there were problems with the Internet ordering system and was asked to try back another day. The other company’s sale ended that day, so I resorted to good old snail mail.

20120329-212628.jpg I’m curious to find out whether they’ ll honor the sale. I did get envelope postmarked by the sale’s end date after all.

I’ve never ordered bulbs via a company’s website (hell, I’ve never ordered bulbs!), so I don’t have any experience as to whether the Internet ordering issues are common. I order plenty other stuff via online (including the new iPad I’m writing this post with), and 99 percent of my experiences have been good.

Anyway, about the actual bulbs. I spread out my catalogs on the floor and started placing cut-out photos of the ones I thought would work on a dry-erase board. I tried to pick a variety of colors and types (Helenium Red Jewel, above) that would bloom at various points of the spring/summer/fall in order to have color all season long. I tried to figure in flowers of a descending height from back to front of the space, too.

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Tulips are coming up – yippee!!

I’ve been waiting anxiously to see whether any of the tulips I planted last November would come up this spring. I’m ecstatic to report that at least some of them are. I looked mid-week and didn’t see any despite the super warm temps. I wasn’t too surprised because I haven’t planted bulbs in about 20 years and then it was in more of a garden setting.

But last fall I decided our brown mulch in front of the house needed some color. So, one warm November Sunday, I planted about 50 tulip bulbs I got at the local Stein’s. If I remember correctly, they were mostly yellow- and pink-colored tulips. I planted some in a straight line on one side of the front door, in clumps on the other side.

Today, I was playing with the camera on my new iPad (I’m writing this post on it) and decided to check again on the bulbs. I was giddy when I saw the first one, thrilled when I saw a few others. In all, there were 12 poking up today (a few of them are in photo below). I can’t wait to see if more pop up, but I’ll be happy if I only get the dozen. Can’t wait to take more photos once the flowers bloom.

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A new project: From clothesline to flower garden

In a little more than a week, the biggest storm of the winter is a distant memory. Since the snowfall on March 2, we’ve had three days with highs in the 40s and 50s, and another three in the 60s (counting today). What’s more, highs for the next six days are expected to be mostly in the mid- to upper 60s, and Wednesday could warm up into the low 70s! True shorts weather in March! With average high temperatures this time of year in the mid-30s, the warmth of late is nothing short of unbelievable.

So, Sunday afternoon I walked the backyard – definitely a bit easier than last week’s venture in the snow. Picked up the trash that had blown under bushes, checked out some of the shrubs and raspberry bushes, and tried to fill in the holes where Chloe (our beagle) had already started digging.

More importantly, I took measurements for what will be my flower project this year. Continue reading

Summer 2011, what didn’t work: No love for zucchini here

Actually, it wasn’t that the zucchini didn’t do well in the garden last summer. It did way, way, way too well! I’ve heard others say that it just keeps giving and giving, and it did. Once again — like my neighbor’s advice that corn wouldn’t grow in my garden — I didn’t listen. Plus, it turned out no one in the family really liked it. Couldn’t give it away either. Won’t. Plant. It. Again. Ever.
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Is it spring yet?

Here’s the thing about winter. Sometimes it’s snowy, sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it’s cold, sometimes it’s not. But it’s always long. Always. There’s nothing I can do about the fact that the growing season in Northeastern Wisconsin is only about five months long Continue reading

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