Posts Tagged ‘garden tips’


Pushing Towards the New Goal and Finding the Past

February 20, 2014

The past two days I have looked through digital photographs, selecting the finest images to sell right here at The funds will go toward the new camera.

It was fun opening file folders, via CDs, then unexpectedly come across forgotten images from when my perennial garden was first established. So much has changed. The images you are about to view are not anything special as far as photography goes but I thought you would like to see how my garden has evolved.

The front of the garden had a variety of plants, most of which had to be cut to the ground come late-fall through early winter. During the blooming season, I had a lot of deadheading to do. It was an enormous job, inside the garden as well. As the snow-in-summer (Cerastium tomentosum) ground cover spread, I removed plants requiring too much work. Now, the bed has a beautiful display of silver green year round with white spring blossoms.


Instead of herbs and a picket fence leading into a tiny vegetable garden, I now have Santa Barbara Daisies (Erigeron Karvinskianus) along the path and a garden house in place of the fence and vegetable area.

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The potato vines behind the bench arbor was removed last fall to repair the fence. We planted new potato vines about a month ago. Soon, the fence will be completely covered again. It doesn’t take long for potato vines to take over. A few years ago, the arbor posts rotted so my husband replaced them. Then the seat rotted. I don’t think my husband is going to replace the wooden seat. A new arch, probably wrought iron, will most likely be a better solution.

In the garden’s early years, yellow columbines bordered the inside beds. It was stunning. Each spring they grew three feet tall. Then as soon as the temperatures heated up, the columbines died back and were cut to the ground. This left empty spaces until the following spring. There was too much pruning and too many empty spaces for my preference, so out they went.

Gardens and lifestyles have to marry or it just doesn’t work.


More later on photographs for sale and fundraising for a new camera.


Catalog Shopping

January 13, 2014


It’s time to plan and decide what vegetables to grow this spring and summer. Seed catalogs and online versions are available now to inspire you with a wealth of new and unusual varieties not offered in stores. When making your seed selections via catalog (or local nursery), be sure to read the full description.

One of my favorite catalogs is Johnny’s Selected Seeds. It has growing charts, tech tips, variety comparison charts, growing information (covering diseases, insect pests and control, harvest, storage, and culture), resistance codes, and an easy symbol guide that tells you if the seed variety is organic, heirloom, trellis needed, container friendly, and more.

Before you order seeds, READ MY TIPS on Shopping for Seeds via Catalogs: Part II


Leaves, Leaves, and More Leaves

January 6, 2014


Many of you have read about the ancient oak in the center of my perennial garden, and how every August through January, millions of leaves (and acorns every ten years) drop like confetti. GIANT trees do this. I’ve had compost piles in the past, but I’m not good at maintaining them, however, our landfill has a wonderful recycle section for greens. So, I would rake, bag, and haul off a large trailer load. Then two years ago, I started dumping the leaves along the backside of the perennial garden to repurpose as a weed blanket.


This winter, partly out of pure laziness, I have left the latter two months of leaves in the perennial garden. Normally, I can’t stand the messy appearance. I like a neat and tidy landscape. But the leaf blanket “in” the garden has functioned well as mulch, kept most weeds at bay, and sealed in moisture—especially important since we are rain poor this year. The leaves are dry, brittle, and light. Once it does rain, they will become heavy (for a leaf) and stick to the soil making the layer underneath nearly impossible to rake. Good for the soil, bad for landscape beautification.


So here’s where I am taking ballots. Vote for #1 or #2:

  1. Do I keep the “leaf blanket” inside the garden, and then come spring rake up what I can and work the rest into the soil? (Nearest neighbors are 40 acres away, so this won’t offend them.)
  2. Do I clean up the unsightly appearance now?

If you don’t want to leave your vote here, under comments, send an email to me,


Garden Tips Hints and Cool Things

April 6, 2012


1)   Lavender plants:  After new foliage has grown in, cut back by 1/3 to stimulate new growth at base of the plant. Never prune out old wood unless it is dead. For more April tasks, click here.

2)   Now is the time to fertilize all your plants and trees. They are working hard to produce new growth and blossoms so give them what they need to be strong and vibrant. Make it simple, buy one fertilize. Organic manure can be used on any type of plant and tree.

3)  This tip is from blog reader, Georgia O. Although the tip doesn’t have anything to do with gardening, I thought it was important enough to share:  Place the contents of your wallet on photocopy machine. Make a copy, copying both sides of each license, credit card, etc. Keep the photocopy in a safe place. You will know what you had in your wallet and all the account numbers and phone numbers to call and cancel.

A Cool Thing:

1) Check out your garden smarts and learn as you play online trivia games from dozens of garden topics.

2) FREE for the taking:  1) Large Eucalyptus trees, could be 40 plus feet tall–some maybe 2 ft. in diameter. Must know how to fall trees and clean up after cutting down the trees. Makes great firewood or whatever need you might have; 2) Peeler posts if you want wood for borders, decorative staggered heights fencing or firewood. Probably 75 of them and at least 4 or 5 feet is usable. Email me at



Garden Tips Hints and Cool Things

March 2, 2012

A Cool Thing:

Unbelievable! Scientists resurrected this Ice Age plant after 30,000 years in deep freeze.


I have added a link listing poisonous plants for livestock and critters living in California,  to the ‘Helpful Resources’ page.


Tips Hints and Cool Things

January 14, 2012


Divide daylily, Shasta daisy, chrysanthemum and other perennials.

Since it hasn’t rained, be sure to check your outdoor potted plants and gardens. Moist soil helps protect plants on frosty mornings.

Cool Thing

World’s smallest frogs belonging to the genus Paedophryne was found in southeastern New Guinea. These species are extremely small, with adults of the two new species — named Paedophryne dekot and Paedophryne verrucosa — only 8-9 mm in length. The members of this genus have reduced digit sizes that would not allow them to climb well; all inhabit leaf litter, and their reduced digits may be a corollary of a reduced body size required for inhabiting leaf litter and moss. Habitation in leaf litter and moss is common in miniaturized frogs and may reflect their exploitation of novel food sources in that habitat. The frogs’ small body sizes have also reduced the egg complements that females carry to only two, although it is not yet known whether both eggs are laid simultaneously or at staged intervals.

Note:  Sorry this is late folks. I had problems getting into my blog again.

Thank you everybody for your kind words regarding Miss Boo Boo and my young hens. Have a wonderful weekend.

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