Thursday, March 31, 2011

Some shrubs have bright fall color--this Smoke Tree Bush has spring "fall" color! It was quite orange in real life, and the leaves will turn burgundy soon. When it blooms, it has large, fuzzy "flowers" that makes the bush look like it is covered with smoke.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Spring Flowers

I wanted to share these pretty flowers, especially with those that live in areas of the world that still have a ways to go before spring blooms in their gardens.
I planted these tulips probably 10 years ago and have ignored them since. Because I don't think about them, I forget they are there, and I'm surprised when they show up each spring!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My Asparagus Bed

This is a picture of my asparagus bed. The bed is located on the south side of my house, and is 2' wide and 10' long. A few days ago I cleaned up my asparagus bed, put down a nice thick layer of chicken manure over the crowns, a thick layer of compost on both sides of the manure, and then new straw on the pathway. This is going to be nearly weed-free all summer! Now, I just wait until the little spears poke through and I will have some good eating! (There is a little asparagus frond at the front of my box; I think it overwintered, protected by the larger, dead fronds that I cleaned out).

Monday, March 28, 2011

Unhappy Flowers

We had a beautiful couple of weeks of spring weather before our recent week of rain and hail. Spring fever was in the air, so I bought some flowers to put in the yard. They look a bit bedraggled now because of several days of dark clouds, rain and hail. I hope to get them planted by the end of this week, and then maybe they will be happy! A week of sun, and 70', has been predicted!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Kitty Barriers

I use a variety of things to keep my cats out of my veggie gardens---usually what I have laying around. This first box has chicken wire, that is mostly flattened. I read about this in Organic Gardening Magazine probably 20 years ago, where a woman was trying to keep her neighbor's cat from digging in her flower beds. All she had to do was lay down chicken wire and put a little loose mulch over the top. It couldn't be seen, but when the cat went to dig, it decided to go elsewhere.
I also keep the plastic trays you get when you buy a flat of flowers. These trays are good for shading newly planted plants, too. I have used bamboo sticks around the tomato cage to try to discourage the cats from going inside and digging. So far it seems to be working!

What are some of the barriers you have used to keep cats and dogs out of the garden?

Friday, March 25, 2011

Clovis Botanical Garden Seminar

The Clovis Botanical Garden is presenting a seminar called, "Spring Into Your Garden", this Saturday, March 26. It will cover several topics, and there will be a BBQ lunch---the cost is $5.00 for the workshops, and $10.00 for the lunch. For more information, click here.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Back Again!

I am sorry that I have been away from my blog for so long. A year-ago last January my Mother died; and with that, my passion for gardening died. I guess it was part of the grieving process, and finally lifted a few weeks ago---I am back into gardening! My yard is a mess, although during a recent warm streak I was out working frantically trying to catch up. Mostly, my problem is with bermuda grass, which has gotten into most everything, except for my veggie garden. The rain has arrived, just like it does every March, but this year there is more of it. Over last weekend we received 2.75"! The first day of Spring our area broke a record for the one-day rainfall---1.47". We have had another .6" of rain, plus a big storm is predicted for next weekend. All of this rain is coming at a time when our fruit trees are blooming, so it will be an interesting harvest this year.

Last fall I planted a bunch of seeds, trying to get myself out of my gardening funk (it didn't work at the time). I put some pea netting over the garden to keep my three cats from digging my seeds up---I thought I was so clever!

A couple of days ago I went out to look at my garden box, and found my cat, Millie, laying UNDER the netting, but at least she hasn't been digging there!

I bought and planted my tomatoes the first week in March. It has been a little cool, but they seem to be doing fine. I will post some pictures of them next time---I have creative cat "fencing" around them, too!