Well I am on my Winter/Spring Sowing kick again. Been saving water/milk jug containers. I don't plan on potting up a lot of containers - Well ... SIGH, that's what I am saying now. I hope I don't wind up with 50 containers on my back deck!
Cosmos Sensation Mix
Groundhog Day 2020 came and went and Phil didn't see his shadow. Early Spring could be on the way. Or, maybe not. I still remember March 2018. I don't remember what the furry rodent predicted for that Spring, but we had a snowstorm every weekend for the entire month!
There are some good things about February though. Bunch of birthdays this month - including mine. Mine was the 6th and I turned 29 - AGAIN! My sister-in-law shares the same birthday - she's 29 again, too. My son was born on the 12th. Valentine's Day is hubby's and my wedding anniversary. A niece's birthday is on the 13th, and another sister-in-law on the 17th ... oh, and a nephew on the 17th too.
I am so itching for no more snow and warmer weather. Years ago, I used to do a lot of Winter/Spring sowing with the milk jugs, plastic food containers, etc. Sometimes I had good results, sometimes not so good. The last few years I really cut back. I don't have the energy and I am planting less than I used to anyway.
I still winter/spring sow Foxglove seeds every year so I can have flowers bloom from year to year. I already have my staple plants in my gardens - peonies, irises, spring bulbs, astilbes, summer lilies, catmint, and my tall summer phlox ... probably some others I can't recall at the moment. I also direct sow morning glory and tall vining nasturtium seeds into pots so I will have thevines climb and flower on my 3 trellises. The last few years I have bought bedding plants for my pots on my back and front decks.
I still LOVE my gardens and flowers - but I also enjoy sitting on my deck DOING NOTHING as I relax and sip a glass of white wine! :-))
Sometimes I really don't know where the time goes. Summer went by so fast, and the Fall was just a quick blink. Have to say though, this past Fall was really nice. Beautiful color and nice weather. Nothing like 2018 - rainy and cool. No color to speak of at all last Fall.
Got most of the garden stuff (pots, chairs, decorations, etc) put away almost a month ago. I still have to trim down the shriveled peony stalks, dead tall garden phlox leaves, and cut back the sprawling Siberian Iris leaves. I decided to leave the Foxgloves alone. The leaves are a bit frost bitten, but still pretty green. When it gets colder all I'll have to do is put down some mulch here and there. About a month ago, I also had planted some daffodil bulbs (about 20) in a spot that could use some color in the Spring. All in all I was pretty satisfied with my gardens this past year.
In the past 2 years I made my gardening areas smaller than they used to be. Really saved my back and knees. And watering too. I still have 3 huge Catmint plants that I didn't get around to moving this year ( kept putting it off) so Spring 2020 I'll move them to my back garden that gets a lot of afternoon sun. That will finally eliminate a garden area that I had in the front of the house (near the street).
Now, let me tell you about HUNTER. We adopted him from a shelter on October 21st. He is such a cute, little sweetheart! He's now 4 month old and he is so much fun! We had been thinking for quite awhile about adopting a kitten. We lost our boy, PATCH, about 3 months prior. Patch was a part feral we took in almost 8 years ago. He had showed up at a friend's house, and she couldn't keep him, so we had taken him. He was an indoor/outdoor cat, but still very feral in many ways. We had him neutered when we first got him, but it didn't turn him into an indoor cat. He preferred being outside, but was always home for meals and hugs. The last few years he did spend more time indoors during the winter, but in the warmer weather he would be out most of the time. We don't know what happened ... he was just out one night and never came home. We searched for him, put a pic in our community paper, but had no luck. He was not social with strangers, so we knew he would never have gone to anyone he didn't know. There are feral cats in our development, so we like to think he might have decided to join a feral cat colony ... but in recent years there has been an increasing rise in the number of coyotes up here in the mountains. It is no longer unusual to see a dead one that had been hit by a car lying along the side of a main road. A lot more red and gray fox, too. We miss PATCH terribly.. and that's what probably made us go and visit the animal shelter. Our new boy, HUNTER, will be strictly an INDOOR cat. He is adjusting very well and is very happy!
I posted some pics below of our new kitty.
Well, anyway ... Have a wonderful Thanksgiving all!
Been quite awhile since I last posted anything. I have been taking things easier than in prior years. This coming September 7th I will be 3 years Breast Cancer Free! Still going for Mammos and check-ups every 6 months, but by the end of the year they will become yearly. Yay! Feeling good, I gotta say :-))
I eliminated a few gardening areas this year. I had what I called my "Boulder Garden" down near the road that I stopped maintaining. Nothing in it really except for a stand of daffodils in the spring and some weedy looking yarrow. I had dug up the daffs and moved them to my front of house garden. Took some weed cloth and covered the rest of the flowerbed (including the yarrow) and covered it with mulch. Did the same thing to my "Mailbox Garden". Nothing in it but weedy yarrow too.
The front of the house garden areas are pretty much the same. I already had anchor plants such as peonies, siberian iris, 2 tall trellises with flower vines (courtesy of Michael's ) and some foxglove plants that re-seed and replenish themselves every year. In the Fall of 2018 hubby helped me plant 4 stands of tall yellow daffodil bulbs in the same long flower bed and they were just gorgeous this past spring of 2019. Oh, in case you wonder why I would resort to ARTIFICIAL FLOWER VINES - well, the DEER would eat my live Clematis vines and the peony leaves. I still have to fence a lot of my favorite plants, but they don't eat - the irises, daffodils, or foxgloves.
I also have a nice flower garden in front of my front deck. 2 peonies, purple phlox, bleeding hearts, astilbe and oriental lilies and some daffodils. FENCED.
In the back of the house there are 3 smaller gardens. One has astilbes and bleeding hearts. Another has bleeding hearts, siberian irises, and asian catmint. And the largest of the 3 has a stand of orange daylilies, foxgloves, hollyhocks, a clematis, and some cosmos. There are also bearded iris in this bed that haven't bloomed for 2 years.This week I think I will dig them up and probably toss them into my compost pile. Then I will plant some Oriental poppy seeds in their place. Only the largest of the 3 gardens is fenced.
I also have a few flower pots on the back deck. Two tomato plants. Some nasturtiums, and some pathetic looking morning glories. No luck with the MG's this year. It was too cool and rainy when they were first planted out.
Anyway, in a few weeks the MUMS will be flooding the nurseries! :-))
The above is today's weather. Bleh! Not much of any of it, but so damn annoying! The weekend, though, brings promise. High 40's to almost 50. I sure do hope the wind chills are done. We had a few -20's awhile back, but none since. More snow to come? Depends. SNOW is still tricky up here in the mountains. We got hammered last March with Spring snowstorms. Gotta hope for the best.
I had bought some clearance tulip bulbs back in mid-November with the intention of trying to force them for late winter/early spring bloom indoors. I had never tried it before, but figured, what the heck! I potted them up to their shoulders in potting mix in 2 small pots and then put them inside a solid blue tote with a blue lid. (NOT SEE THROUGH). Well, they chilled for about 11 weeks (in our unheated attached garage) and I took them out into the warmth a little less than a week ago. The little buggers are growing like crazy! Hopefully, I should have flowers in a few weeks!
Since I was bored today, I decided to do a bit of winter sowing. I prepped three empty water jugs (only had 3) and planted Lupine, hollyhock, and butterfly weed seeds from the stash that I had stored in the fridge. Being "cold tolerant", they shouldn't mind the chill at all. I have also have seeds for columbine, foxglove, and alyssum (also cold tolerant) that I can also plant now ... as soon as I get a few more water/milk jugs.
Our cat, Patch, has been getting into SOMETHING this past week. He's part feral (indoor/outdoor) and has been coming home ... FILTHY! His fur is coated with something that sort of looks like ... SOOT. Our theory is ... he's been rolling around in discarded chimney ashes that someone must have dumped in the woods nearby. Trying to clean Patch up has been challenging. First, I wipe him down with a dry, large towel to try and get most of the "dust" off first. Then, it's a hand towel doused with water mixed with BLUE DAWN dish detergent. He does put up with it, but he really HATES it when I get to his paws. CATS ... Ya gotta love 'em though!
Oh, here's a pic of my tulips!
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