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Archive for the ‘Gardening’ Category

Thought I’d jump right in and make a quick post.  Tonight was the first evening this season that I’ve spent in the garden.   I really enjoyed breaking up the clumps of dirt with my hands. I was amazed that this little activity could be so therapeutic. As the clumps of dirt broke down,  I sifted through the clumps in my mind that needed breaking down. After a few hours, I felt so peaceful. Gardening is wonderful  medicine for our soul. Give it a try.

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Sitting AreaWhen we replaced our 12′ by 32 ‘ deck last year I was so happy to set up this hidden  sitting spot.  In the morning, we love to sit out here to: have breakfast; read; and enjoy the sounds and scents of nature. Sometimes I practise meditation here.  An outdoor area is so easy to set up. I previously had the bistro table, bought the umbrella at a garage sale (5.00) and picked up the mat on sale (20.00).   The plants are on stands with rollers so I can wheel them around. Bamboo blinds are good for creating privacy also. I use them in another sitting area on our property. Because this area is not permanent, we take it down before the snow arrives.  I hope you give this a try if you aren’t enjoying your outdoor space.

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One of the things I best like about Fall is planning next years garden. I’ve been wandering around my garden and accessing my plants. I’ve noted, in my gardening journal, which plants did well and which ones didn’t. I’m deciding which plants need thinning and which ones need to be moved. I’m thinking about options for the plants that struggled. I’m imagining what seeds I can use in borders and where to place my pots. In the next few weeks, I’m going to trim the perennials and transplant the ones that are going to a new location.  I’m going to dig up the bulbs; clean them off; and replant some of them.  I’ll draw diagrams in my journal – so that I’ll know what’s where come Spring and Summer.  Ladies, plan now for next year’s garden. You’ll be really pleased with the results. Have a wonderful Fall. Linda

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I sure like to use my rain barrel. Rain barrels are simply a storage tank for temporarily holding stormwater.  Stormwater from your roof is collected into a barrel that is attached to your downspout. The benefits of using a rain barrel for watering in your garden are:  rain is naturally free of chlorine and fluoride; helps conserve water; and it reduces ones water bill. Also, rainwater contains nitrogen (produced during lightning strikes).  Nitrogen is an important natural fertilizer for the soil. We’ve just got our second rain barrel and I can hardly wait for it to be hooked up. We’ll attach a soaker hose to it and use it solely for one of our dryer gardens. The other barrel is used for hand watering. My potted plants just flourish from rain water.  If you’re not using a rain barrel you’re  missing many benefits. Why not give it a try?

Remember to clean it once in awhile (the car wash works well). You’ll need to drain and disconnect it before winter also.  Have a wonderful day. Linda

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(Before and after – 8 month time duration )

I sure like to compost and have been doing so for quite sometime now. Composting creates a rich, black soil through the decay of plant and waste materials. This organic material makes a fine humus. Once you add it to your lawn and gardens, it helps break up heavy clay soils; adds essential nutrients to the soil; helps soil hold water better; discourages weeds; helps gardens and lawns become less dependent on chemicals. Composting will cut the amount of your weekly garbage almost in half – so it’s a great way to recycle. One of my favorite benefits of composting is weed elimination. I have no weeds in my established gardens.  Composting is so simple, it needn’t be complicated at all. Long ago our composter was made of old wooden pallets. It was the best composter we had.  We upgraded (?) to a manufactured model that looks a little better in the yard. We add things like coffee grounds, tea bags, raw fruit and vegetable scraps, mulched leaves, grass clippings, newspaper, egg shells and dryer lint. Don’t add things like meat, bones, and animal dropping. Add a little water now and then and give it a stir to accelerate the process. By the way, natural activators are coffee grounds, tea leaves, and bone meal. There are so many resources available to get you started. You might want to check your city/municipality website. Don’t let the articles complicate things for you though. It is very simple – just stick to the basics. If you’ve not started composting, I sure hope you give it a try.

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Yesterday I sat out on my swing with a cup of tea to enjoy the beautiful fall afternoon. Before I knew it, I was putting mulch around my recently trimmed perennials. Its best to add mulch after the ground freezes or the first frost.   Sometimes I do it when it’s most convenient for me though. This fall I am using shredded dry leaves and cut grass to keep the soil a consistent temperature over the winter and prevent my plants from dying. I usually use compost, but I’ve used all the compost in a new flower bed. To mulch the plants, I applied about a 2” layer of shredded leaves and grass around the base of each plant. I then used my gardening tool and worked it into the soil a little – mostly to prevent it from blowing away.   By spring, the combination will have decomposed and my plants will look great. If theres any mulch left, I’ll simply rake it off. If you like to flower garden and live in a colder climate, you’ll find winter mulching really beneficial. Have a nice day. Linda

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As I was cleaning out my garden the other day, I was reminded of a perennial exchange I had with girlfriends last fall. After we divided our plants and bulbs, we got together and exchanged the extras. This is a great way to beautify your yard and your neighborhood – for free. Maybe this is something you’d like to do, it’s alot of fun.

This year I’ve collected a few seeds from plants like this Painted Daisy. I’m going to enclose the seeds in cards I send to friends – as a little surprise.  Have a wonderful day,  Linda

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