One thing I have a love/hate relationship with is looking at something and wondering why someone did what they did. For instance, neither of our bathrooms have electrical outlets. Who doesn’t have outlets in their bathroom? It makes some grooming activities a bit complicated to accomplish for the time being. We’ve had quite a number of “why did they do that?!” moments around the yard as well. After Chris cut down some fallen trees, we found out we have some huge jasmine bushes. Why would someone not take care of something like that!
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When we moved here in the fall, Chris spent some time weed whacking one day in order to clean up our property line along the road, not thinking anything important was growing. To our surprise, we have a neglected perennial flower bed in need of much TLC.
The first thing I noticed was this bunch of leaves that all looked the same and were definitely not weeds. When I looked further, I noticed the remaining dead petals and knew it was hydrangeas. I didn’t think anything of it, just figured it was a lone bunch and the rest would have to go. And then I lost it with excitement! Chris kept looking down the line and mentioned that a plant’s buds had ants all over them. Without a second thought, I knew they were peonies.
From the looks of it, these beauties will be an amazing shade of pink. Fresh flowers will be filling the house in no time!
Then we found the lilies. Who would neglect something like these?! I’m blown away!
One lily decided to be an overachiever and bloomed before the rest were ready. I’m used to seeing orange wild lilies, these yellow ones will be a nice change. This is also the same patch where the daffodils bloomed a few weeks ago.
I have peonies I plan on planting in the fall with some hostas at the base of one of our kind maple’s and was trying to not show my sadness for getting a start on planting so late this year. Finding this surprise flower bed has made our delay much easier to accept. Besides, mother nature decided winter wasn’t going to end until almost the end of April so we didn’t have much help their either.
Back in March, I attempted a different way of starting seeds for our garden in hopes of eliminating excess plastics from our gardens. Most black nursery pots cannot be recycled so they either end up sitting in a stack or being thrown away if they’ve fallen apart. Needless to say, that first attempt failed. I can’t figure out why, but all of the plants became overwhelmed by mildew, and nothing I tried helped. They all eventually died and that was that. Fast forward to 2 weeks ago and we had a sudden realization that there was no way to make our garden work to its full potential unless we used mostly transplants rather than directly sowed seeds. In our Spring 2018 product list, I had linked to biodegradable nursery bags that I decided to finally try. They take a bit more soil that other seed starting pods but these bags can be placed directly into the ground, eliminating the need to ensure stable root growth before transplanting. The roots will eventually break down the bags and the rest is history. I set up everything else the same as my previous attempt and was pleasantly surprised with the results.
This photo was taken almost a week ago and they have since become much taller. Most of the tomato plants have grown their second or third set of leaves so I’m feeling pretty confident they’ll do ok in the ground. In that photo, I have black tomatoes, Betalux tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, red cabbage, and lavender. Anything else will either be purchased to transplant or direct sowed if it’s a cold-weather crop. This weekend in the weekend we finally break ground and get things going! My fingers are very loosely crossed that we’ll get a permanent fence up by the end of fall but deep down I’ll be happy just to keep everything alive and away from the deer and rabbits.
This weekend I’m also hoping to finally get to my special and solo project: the herb garden. It’s been neglected since I got injured and other outdoor projects have become more important. It’s time to finish her up and show her off! If you haven’t already received our free Culinary Herb Companion Planting Guide, sign up for our newsletter on the right-hand side of this page to get your copy!