Neighbours talking over the garden gate has long been a tradition. They share gardening tips, complain about the weather and pests yet are ever eager to discuss their gardens. That is what I had in mind when creating this blog. So stop by my garden gate to find out the latest happenings in my garden.

Happy Gardening!

Garden Gnome
"All my life through, the new sights of Nature made me rejoice like a child." ~ Madame Marie Curie"

Monday, May 01, 2006

Odds and Ends

I really enjoysunrises and sunsets so I take a lot of pictures of them. This morning, the sky was threatening rain. The clouds were heavy enough to wipe out any sunset. I pondered the gardens while sipping on my morning coffee disappointed there wouldn't be a gorgeous sunrise to great the day. One thing I've learned living on the water is nature never disappoints. The water constantly takes on a life of its own. Today was no different.
Tundra Swan
Three tundra swans swam by so I couldn't resist taking a couple of pictures. The lighting was a little too low an I used the zoom so the picture is a little grainier than I would like. One of these days I will get the perfect picture of them but for now I'm just happy they blessed my day.

I just realized that while I've talked about my gardens, I haven't really posted pictures of them. I have five raised beds planted in the square foot method. I use push pins to attach cotton yarn to form the grids. This picture was taken a sunrise a couple of days ago. Sunrise is one of my favourite times of the day. Here you can see part of bed #1, bed #2, bed #4 (strawberries) and bed # .
SFG beds
The grids remain for the entire growing season. A particular vegetable is destined for each square. Each bed has a specific use though. Squares are replanted as needed so most of the time the beds are rather full.

I have a love hate relationship with the greenhouse. I wanted it so bad yet didn't know that most times I would be fighting it. It does extend the growing season by about a month on each end. However, because of its size, it is difficult to heat properly in cold weather and overheats in July and August. Last year, we cleared it out for the summer months. Still it is useful and a beneficial addition to the garden. Here are a couple of pictures of the greenhouse.
Greenhouse at Night
Until the past week or so, I used a 150 watt grow bulb to light the greenhouse. Being energy conscious, I changed that bulb out to a 26 watt CF floodlight. So far I haven't noticed any problems with the plants.
Sunrise on the Greenhouse

Basil is one of my favourite herbs. Each year I experiment with different basils but always grow sweet basil. Basil pesto freezes well and basil makes a really nice vinegar.
Sweet Basil
This year I'm growing purple basil, cinnamon basil, sweet basil and lemon basil. Basil is an annual here so I start the seeds in the greenhouse. When frost threatens, I bring the basils into the house to enjoy a little longer. Unfortunately, basil tends to get leggy indoors so usually by mid January, the plants aren't very good. A little tip for basil is to root it in water. Take a snipping from the main basil plant. Fill a jar with water then cover with plastic wrap. Poke a hole in the plastic wrap to put the snipping then wait for it to develop roots. Either leave as is or pot in soil. This is one way to extend your basil yield.

I love tulips so they grace along the south side of the house. They make me smile as they wave gently in the wind. I was very concerned today as the house was being power washed. I know the service is professional and know what they are doing but that didn't stop me from worrying.


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