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Gardening - 2020
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NotMyCircus
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Friday, May 29, 2020 - 4:27 pm
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My herbs are taking off like rockets. My housemate says they seem to like their new location near the pool. 🙂  They have more shade there. 

The zucchini blooms are staying closed now and a few have fallen off the plants. So they’re struggling. At least the leaves are mostly greener. I also saw a seedling pop out of the soil nearby, outside the mulched area and where there’s fresh rich soil–I wonder if it’s trying to resurrect itself! Lol!

So today I gave most of my herbs a trim and also checked out the massive lemon balm bush on the side of the trail leading to the lake. (There’s enough of it to make a few batches of lemon balm syrup if I wanted to.)  Mint will pop up everywhere if it can–I pruned a few puny-looking leaves off that bush and left them on the ground nearby. I bet a few new plants show up. 

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Friday, May 29, 2020 - 5:06 pm
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Squash is probably fine. Just waiting for the right time to bust a move. Congrats on the herbs. The more you use, the more you’ll have!

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Thursday, June 4, 2020 - 6:22 am
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green-onion-rolls.jpgImage Enlarger

These are green onion rolls, set to rise.

Green-Onion-Rolls.jpgImage Enlarger

This is what the finished product will look like.
I am splitting these with my neighbor, who gave me the onion sets. It’s a surprise.

These are kind of a pain to make, but worth it!

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JoFrance
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Thursday, June 4, 2020 - 6:15 pm
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They look delicious!  I love onion rolls.  I’m sure there is a lot of prep work, but so worth it when they’re done.

I did a lot of planting yesterday, mostly flowers.  Morning Glories, Impatiens, Geraniums, Petunias and many other assorted flowers.  I put some of them in colorful pots and made arrangements.  I also planted two new Rose bushes that smell heavenly.  I got my husband to plant those.

Today I just sat around and was lazy.  I wore myself out, but had great fun doing it.

I need more plants.  I’m waiting for the Portulacas to become available.  I put them in my strawberry pot.  I tried planting strawberries in it and they came out great, but a Catbird came along and ate them, so I never bothered after that.  I got one berry out of the entire plant. cry  Birds love berries.  We have a lot of wild Raspberries that grow and the birds eat them all every year.

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NotMyCircus
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Wednesday, June 10, 2020 - 8:15 pm
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My zucchini is trying so hard to bust a move, but it can’t. All the flowers died off. I think I figured out why, apart from maybe too shallow a planter, too much rain, and aphids.

My housemate’s hibiscus is hogging the fucking space!! 😂

I looked down at it from the deck upstairs. She has planted elephant ears, lilies, hibiscus and a few other plants in this planter. The zucchini has literally nowhere to go now. The leaves have greened up some, since I sprayed it with a neem oil organic insecticidal spray. But its main stalks look weak–I think the other plants are trying to choke them out! 

One of my clients has graciously offered to let me plant them in their raised beds. Their zucchini lost its flowers due to all the storms here, but maybe mine will fare better there.

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Sue Ellen
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Friday, June 26, 2020 - 3:18 pm
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Last night husband Big Sadge brought home some volunteer tomato plants. Unfortunately, the bucket fell over in the back of his pickup sometime during the four hour drive. 
They are wilted. Maybe some will make it. We planted and watered them. I watered and fed them this morning. Some of the tops are still wilted. 
We are curious as to what these plants will be since the parent plants were hybrid Jet Star variety. 

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Friday, June 26, 2020 - 3:44 pm
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They’ll make it!!

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Friday, June 26, 2020 - 3:44 pm
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They’ll make it!!

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Friday, June 26, 2020 - 6:59 pm
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They’re probably just in shock and will make a comeback when they get accustomed to their new home.

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CocoPeaches
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Saturday, June 27, 2020 - 1:14 pm
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My husband and I have been working extremely hard over the last 4 years, on our gardens, and beyond… At this point, it feels like heaven! Plants are thriving. We get to see butterflies and toads enjoying the space too. Our trails are lush with all sorts of wild flora and fauna. Yesterday I canned strawberry rhubarb jam. The berries came from an organic farmer, and the rhubarb from our backyard. 

While we are continuously reaping the benefits, there’s always so much more work to do, and so much more to learn. We had frost in the middle of June! Lost some tomato plants, but the peppers, cukes, and corn all survived. It’s my first time growing corn so that’s exciting. I did a “three sisters” style garden, which is a native American method of interplanting corn, beans, and squash. We have an infestation of gypsy moth caterpillars that are just disgusting. I started managing them early on, so the damage isn’t catastrophic, but they are just gross. The community garden looks 1000x better than it did last year.

I’m starting to think about ordering seed garlic and tulip bulbs to plant in October. We’re looking forward to deer season. Our winters are so long and harsh, so this time of year does not get taken for granted.

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Saturday, June 27, 2020 - 1:49 pm
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Harvesting green and yellow wax beans, cukes, summer squash, kale, lettuce, herbs swiss chard, jalopenos, sweet peppers and the very occasional cherry tomato because they’re just not ripe.  Also have onions… picking them green, as needed.  And snow peas! 🙂

Waiting on winter squash, watermelon, Brussels sprouts,eggplant and poblano peppers. 

Cabbage, cauliflower and broc has all been harvested. Not putting in a late season crop because of surgery.

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Saturday, June 27, 2020 - 3:21 pm
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We have only a small garden but have four raised beds and I’m growing tomatoes in pots on the patio and potatoes large plastic shopping bags. We were late getting started as our garden was semi-derelict and we had to clear everything out first. Here in our Northern clime we’re just harvesting perpetual beetroot spinach, black kale, broad (fava) beans, squash, herbs and radishes and salads. The first batch of potatoes have sprouted 4 foot high and are now flowering, as our the tomatoes. Just planted in the 2nd batch of seed potaotes and am re-potting the next lot of tomatoes.

Blackfly and other aphids have been a huge problem. I also have to keep an eye out for blight. I’m experimenting with a mixture of 5 mil each of oregano oil (the most powerful anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-bacterial herb oil available), dishwashing liquid and sunflower oil in a litre spray bottle of water for all-round pest and disease control. Getting some promising results.

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NotMyCircus
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Saturday, June 27, 2020 - 5:00 pm
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Update:

My garden has some new additions!

The basil seeds were a mixed bag. Some of the seed pods (aka eggshell seed starters) were eaten by the dog. So I made more and kept them out of reach. Some did well and grew, some didn’t. I now have 6 basil seedling plants outside getting some good rain. 

I am also doing an experiment. 😎 A few weeks ago, I bought sweet potatoes, left them in their plastic bag in a dark corner of the pantry, and kept forgetting to use them. Two of them formed sprouts with leaves on them! I didn’t have the heart to discard the sprouts. So I sliced off the sprouted ends of the potatoes, cleaned some leftover seedling pots, put potting soil in them, and planted the sprouted ends in the soil. Sweet potato slips, they call them. Anyway, they are poppin’! 🌿🍠  The leaves on these slips are gorgeous. 

As for the other plants, they’re doing well. I’ve already seasoned a couple of meals with the herbs. I have dried herbs that need storing as well. I used the lemon balm in a tea. The zucchini has flowered, lost those flowers (thank you spring storms) and is flowering again. It’s trying. Most of the leaves look great due to neem oil treatments and maybe the sevin dust. But the stems coming out of the ground are fragile. I think it’s just too crowded in. 

Still waiting on the dahlia to bloom. Citronella plant had a bunch of leaves curl up and brown, so I moved it and applied neem oil spray. Seems to help. 

The neem oil seems to be helping all the plants, actually. It seems to calm them down and whatever was eating the basil leaves has backed off. I found a BUNCH of roly-polies in my lemon balm, though. Not sure how they got in the pot! I threw them out because I don’t know if they are friend or foe. 

Sorry for the long-winded essay. Just wanted to give a *cough cough* brief *cough cough* note on my garden plants. 

Oh yeah, the crane figurines Shiny Taurus’ momma gave us…I’ve placed them in the garden, to watch over the blooms. 

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Monday, July 6, 2020 - 6:10 pm
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My gardening habit has become somewhat extreme. My family has taken notice, and now all gifts that I receive are garden-centric. I have such supportive and sweet people in my life, and for that I am grateful. I got a bunch of new stuff over this past year that will significantly increase the mileage that I get out of my garden, so I’m going to tell you about my new toys…

One of the things is a little pop-up green house tent, which we call “the bubble” because it’s a dome shape. My husband got it for me on sale at the end of the summer last year, and it was great for extending the season to ripen tomatoes and peppers after the first frost. It was also super useful for starting and protecting seedlings this Spring. It is obscenely hot in the bubble right now, because it’s been consistently 90 degrees F every day and hasn’t rained in 2 weeks… but I’m growing tomatoes in there and the plants are producing wildly! Not ripe yet, but tons of fruit on the vine. I call these my “experimental tomatoes,” because I don’t know how well it’s going to play out.

For Christmas, I got a dehydrator and a pressure canner. I haven’t used these things yet, but I’m doing a test run in the dehydrator right now. I just harvested some sage, thyme, oregano, and lavender, and I’ve been waiting for this moment. In the past I would just tie up bundles of herbs to hang dry, but I think the dehydrated herbs are going to be of much greater quality. There are so many possibilities with this thing. I might not get into pressure canning until we have venison, but I’m looking forward to doing more water bath canning (salsa) and starting to get comfortable with the pressure canner (it makes me feel sorta steampunk! lol).

The coolest new thing we have is a riding lawn mower – vintage. My mother-in-law’s boyfriend is super handy, and he fixed up an old John Deere for us as a wedding gift. My husband is the one who mows the lawn, and this thing makes his life so much easier. For my birthday, I got a trailer and a bagger attachment for the lil tractor/mower. The trailer is heavy duty and I can tow loads of mulch and tools and potted plants and all kinds of stuff around our property. The bagger attachment is my favorite thing, because it’s basically a mulch making machine, and I freaking love mulch. It’s also like a vacuum cleaner for our yard, so that’s a bonus.

I’ve been in a funk today, but gardening brings me joy. Homesteading and organic gardening have become so trendy at this point, and I hate being trendy! But this is too much fun, too rewarding, too rich, to give a damn about what other people are doing. I love how gardening has transformed my life, and opened up doors for me. I can’t wait to see how it continues to unfold in my life. T. Pluto + Jupiter trine my Taurus sun today.

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Tuesday, July 7, 2020 - 5:58 am
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I use my dehydrate all summer long. I have never dried herbs but I dry gobs of tomatoes of all types (salt them). I also make jerky.

I dry (fresh) pineapple chunks to use for baking scones. I have also dried cantaloupe because my neighbor dumped a bunch of them on my porch. Super sweet. Lovely, actually.

I have dehydrated squash but left that idea in Colorado.

I have a pressure canner but have never canned meat. I use a water bath now because my stovetop is not friendly to the pressure canner, but…

I have other options to use the pressure cannner, when necessary.

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