Wednesday, April 30, 2008

More Pictures From Around the Yard


Veronica Spicata or 'Royal Candles'


Hens and Chicks

Azalea? Rhododendron? you see the happy bee? They are all over this thing!

Azalea or Rhododendron with another happy can see the pollen on his legs


A view of all four heather plants in the front of the house. This bed needs some major attention. We won't be using the red mulch anymore; it clashes with most of our flowers.....what were we thinking?!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

What Kind of Tree Is This?

We have at least one of these trees and I'm curious to find out what it is.

ETA~The posters at MotheringDotCommune suggested that it might be Norway Maple and a Google image search shows that it is very likely indeed.

Seedling Pictures

Because my favorite blogs are pic heavy!

Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins

Triple Treat Pumpkins

Spaghetti Squash

Green Goliath Broccoli (before I trimmed to thin a bit)

Green Goliath Broccoli (after the trim...I probably need to trim more, but I was scared!)


Roma Tomatoes

Dark Opal Purple Basil


Chives....planted last year

My First (almost) Square Foot Garden; I couldn't figure out how to do a grid with brick. The rest of my beds will be made of wood. This bed is 5'x3' and has 5 squares of Snap Peas, 5 of Spinach (Avon & Teton Hybrids), and 5 of Bibb Lettuce. Next year I need to remember to succession plant, but I had a 4 year old helper and he was so excited that we just went for it!

And that's where we are with the veggies. It's gotten cold here again, so the plants are going to slow way down in growth rate. I can't wait for it to warm up again so I can get more yard work done!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Notes To Remember

Kwanzan Flowering Cherry.....this is the variety of flowering tree we hope to buy Mom for Mother's Day. Check Mike's Nursery to see if they carry them.

Take photos of the asparagus(?) I found growing in the compost pile.

Creeping Phlox

Ok, I just saw a photo of someone's yard full of creeping phlox on GardenWeb and I have to have some! That was the most beautiful yard I have ever seen! Here it is...

My front door.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Seedling Emergence Notes

Friday, April 25: tons of Green Goliath Broccoli have emerged, Scallions are just starting to peek through

Saturday, April 26: a Triple Treat Pumpkin is poking through, as are some of the Oregano seedlings, also more Green Goliath Broccoli is showing its head; at bedtime when I turned off the lights I also discovered that the Purple Basil has sprouted and another Triple Treat Pumpkin is peeking through

Sunday, April 27: I have a spaghetti squash! Woohoo! Bedtime check (when I turn off the lights) reveals a Jack 'O Lantern is up. The kids will love that.

Monday, April 28: We have tons of Oregano, tons of Purple Basil, tons of Scallions, and of course tons of Green Goliath Broccoli. There is at least one Roma Tomato, as well.
Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins~1
Triple Treat Pumpkins~2
Spaghetti Squash~1
Giant Moonflowers~1

Wednesday, April 30: I'm noticing what looks like the first set of true leaves on the pumpkins and squash. Time to start fertilizing them!
Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins~4
Triple Treat Pumpkins~3
Spaghetti Squash~2 (by evening we had 4)
Butterbush Squash~1
Giant Moonflowers~2

Thursday, May 1:
Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins~6
Triple Treat Pumpkins~3
Spaghetti Squash~6
Butterbush Squash~2
Giant Moonflowers~2

Friday, May 2:
Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins~6 (by bedtime we had 7)
Triple Treat Pumpkins~3
Spaghetti Squash~6 (by bedtime we had 7)
Butterbush Squash~3
Giant Moonflowers~2 (by bedtime we had 3)

Saturday, May 3:
Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins~7
Triple Treat Pumpkins~3
Spaghetti Squash~8
Butterbush Squash~3
Giant Moonflowers~3

Garden Plans

I guess it would be a good idea to post exactly what I plan to plant this year. Notes on what is already planted, what seedlings have been started, and the dates the seedlings emerge would be really helpful to have as the season progresses.

On Monday, April 21 I started the following seeds:
Green Goliath Broccoli
Roma Tomatoes
Jack 'O Lantern Pumpkins
Triple Treat Pumpkins
Evergreen Long White Bunching Onions (Scallions)
Spaghetti Squash (winter squash)
Butterbush Squash (winter squash)
Sweet Basil
Dark Opal Purple Basil
Italian Parsley
Cupid's Dart Blue Perennial Flowers

On Friday, April 25 I planted the following seeds in the first brick 5' x 3' square foot bed:
5 squares of Super Snappy Snap Peas
2 1/2 squares of Avon Hybrid Spinach
2 1/2 squares of Teton Hybrid Spinach
5 squares of Bibb Lettuce

I still need to plant:
strawberries (two of those hanging bags of them, I hope to get this done tomorrow)
Little Finger Carrots
Kentucky Wonder Pole Beans
Potatoes (possibly, just to experiment since I've never grown them before)
Cauliflower (might have to plant at Mom's)
Watermelon (will plant at Mom's)
Spearmint (in a pot!)
Peppermint (in a pot!)

Grow Lights

I did a little cleaning in the basement this morning and helped Marc hang my new flourescent lights. I think they need to be a bit closer to the plants, but that's easily remedied by moving the chain on the hook. I'm going to have to do a quick internet search to see if I can find out how close they should be. In the meantime, here are a couple of pictures. We have more broccoli sprouting in the little greenhouse, plus some flowers, and a pie pumpkin. Yay!

In case you are wondering, the tape is on the greenhouses so that the lids don't blow away when I have them outside.

Oh, and a reminder to myself to take some pictures of what I found growing in the compost heap.

ETA: I've moved the lights down so that they are about an inch or two away from the plants.

Friday, April 25, 2008

I Can't Find My Camera!

And the last place I had it was outside! *groan* I guess we'll be using our economic stimulus money for a new camera if I can't find it.

I wanted to show a picture of the bed I just planted my snap peas, two varieties of spinach, and some bibb lettuce in. It's nothing special, but it's my first square foot garden!

I also made a trip to the hardware store for some shop lights and bulbs today so we can rig up the basement after cleaning it out tomorrow. I just don't have a great window for my seedlings to get enough light. A few small pots will fit on one windowsill perfectly, and the broccoli in one of them is growing like mad! I planted them all on Monday, just 4 days ago. The package says seedlings will emerge in 10-21 days! I guess they like the soil, the pot, and the sun they are getting. I wish I had the camera so you could see the little beauties!

Oops, I have to run and get my husband from work, but I'll be back tonight with more rambling.
I'm back, dinner is done, and I'm going to post a bit before I head back outside.

I found the camera! Or rather, it was never lost. Marc took it to work so he could take a few pictures for his boss! *phew* I'm so glad it wasn't lost! So I need to post some photos of my fast sprouting broccoli and the square foot garden. I'll get to it after I do some more yard work. :)

Four day old broccoli. These were the extra seeds that I couldn't stand to not plant. I figured I could use the healthiest looking ones for the garden and compost the rest. I just sprinkled a ton of seeds in the pot, which is why it looks so unruly!

And the scallions are starting to sprout as well! Can you see them?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Before Pictures

We're doing a LOT of work around our little two acre plot in a small village in Western New York. For you to get the full picture over the coming months, you need to see what it looked like to begin with. Well, not to begin with, because we've been working on the yard for the last three years and I only took the "before" pictures on Monday!

Please ignore the ugly siding, which will be replaced sometime in the next few years. Also ignore the masses of hideous plastic toys.....we're working toward a more natural play space, but it's slow going!

First, the bed around our most-used porch (we have 4!)
In this bed we have an azalea, lillies, sparaxis, gladiolas, and a lilac.
Also visible are some potted chives.

Next, an empty area that will soon be sporting a snazzy little patio made from free tiles my mom had in a pile in her woods.

Our large maple tree surrounded by hyacinths and daylilies. The lilies have been moved since I took the pictures on Monday because they don't get enough light in that spot. Isn't the plastic irritating to look at?! And the garbage cans aren't even for garbage. One holds our camping chairs and the other is full of some vines I'm going to make into wreaths.

Another view of where the patio will be and a view of the back porch.

A view along the side of our yard where I'm going to put some raised beds for square foot gardening and flowers. I'm hoping the neighbor gets rid of his junk truck this year, but I won't hold my breath. He's quite nice and the rest of his yard is nice and neat, so I'm not going to complain too loudly.

This is along the property line with the same neighbor who has the junk truck you just saw. I've planted the daylilies and some daffodils here since the picture was taken. We're hoping to make a natural play space for the kids in the edge of the woods.

The woods and the piles of leaves that have since been raked up. Where that pile of black weedcloth is I transplanted some peonies that were too close to the house. I dug them up last year and gave them to my mom, but of course I didn't manage to get them all.

The real mess that I'm working hard on. There are briars and weeds galore, plus some metal that the previous owners dumped back there that I need to dig out. What fun!

More of the mess, the compost pile, and the neighbors' pool.

Panning past the compost to near the little pine tree where I planted a ton of bulbs earlier this week. You'll see updated photos soon.

One more view of where the bulbs were planted.

Our shed and the mess that my husband needs to clean up! What do you with old gas cans to recycle them? And all of my pots ready to be filled up as soon as the weather is warmer. Leaves to haul away still....I think this is my last big leaf pile that needs taken care of.

The other side of the shed. This area in front of the neighbors' fence is going to be tough to plant in unless I put in raised beds. Our house is an old farmhouse and we have huge amounts of concrete in the back yard. Does anyone have a suggestion for a shade-loving ground cover that doesn't spread so fast that it will invade the neighbors' property before I know it, and that also has a very shallow root base?

Picture two of that area.

I didn't get pictures of the front yet. We're not doing much out there but adding some more mulch and adding a small fenced area for the dog.

So there is the backyard before. I can't wait to show you the in-progress and after pictures!