Tag Archives: pumpkins

The End

Wow! I can’t believe I am still actually working in Big Garden – all the way to “The End” instead of just Continue reading

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Weeds

Didn’t make it out to the garden this evening due to thunderstorms late afternoon and a work appointment at 6pm. Thought I would get there but didn’t eat until 8:40 so daylight ran out.

I’ve sworn to myself that I would keep ahead of the weeding this year. It is usually the hopelessness of ever catching up with them that leads to my letting the garden fail. So, I worked hard to get most of my beds mulched with grass clippings with the exception of the melons/squashes and pumpkins – which I should be able to do tomorrow evening after the boys cut the lawn. Now that the corn is up, I can finish mulching around the seedlings and not just between the rows, as it is now covered. That leaves the areas where I planted seeds directly that I am still waiting on:  sunflowers, herb triangles, and the cutting flowers bed.

It is the flower bed that I am most concerned about and where I have been spending my time. Wanting a totally loose, cottagy feeling, I made a flower ‘mesclun’ blend of two cosmos, cleome, bells of Ireland, cornflowers and a zinnia that did little for me a couple of years ago but I still had the packet of leftover seeds, so I tossed them in. Really wished I had ordered some nicotiana to add to the mix.  I then scattered the whole lot over the 4′ x 10′ bed.

(If this works as I hope, I will plan better for next year – more varieties and more of seeds of each… See, the invasive gene again seeping into my planning –  I can’t help myself!)

Of course, the watering needed to germinate the new seeds worked its magic on the dormant weed seeds first. Not knowing what all the good seedlings would look like (cosmos and bells of Ireland are fairly distinctive if you have grown them before), I set out to pull only known weeds – there are three that I see every year but I really don’t know what they are. I don’t typically spend a lot of time learning what they are unless really provoked, like with wintercress – long story.

After tonight’s rain and a day of no weeding, I will really need to be committed tomorrow evening!

As to the sunflowers and herbs, I have resolved to do the following if things head south:

  • Purchase a few herbs from final sales and then mulch if no seeds come up
  • Solarize the sunflowers bed if nothing germinates (details to follow, if I have to go that route).

In The Garden (ITG)

Hanging on the knob of the door leading outside from my kitchen is a little wooden sign, rusticlly painted with carefree lilies and the words “I’m in the Garden” – must have picked it up at some herb festival  or other; can’t remember but it is clearly handmade and at $10 (or even $5), I provided a lot of profit to its maker. It is not my usual style, I could easily have made it for about .25, and my husband resisted its residency due to its, infrequent, prevention of shutting the door easily. 

I don’t know why, but I love it. It serves no purpose because I don’t move it to indicate when I am REALLY “in the garden”. But, it does have those purple lilies and cheers me up when I am not ITG.

I saw it tonight and realized that it is about time to put it away for the season – see, I take it down until I am ready to be ITG again – which really means I store it until after the Christmas decor is put away. I have a Santa to hang in its place (I have a real Santa collection (complex) so I need the knob…).

So, while I prepare for the holidays (another complex), the little sign will be in a box in the basement, next to the seedling bench.

But, I will still have ITG moments as I gather from the yard the makings of an Advent Wreath:  box, holly, cedar, pine, crepe myrtle berries, maybe even some hydrangea, rose hips, and crab apples – it is always interesting to see what is out there that will work.

Even before that, I will be able to find oak leaves for Thanksgiving and a few small pumpkins are holding up. It is just a matter of looking and imagining. That is the reward of the work – the beauty that can be retained in the “off-season” – when I am not ITG.

Nov 3 – What’s Next

Well, as suspected, I have not been a good fall clean up gardener… I guess this is just not a realistic goal while I have two boys playing multiple sports – each weekend had the minimum of two soccer games and a football game, if not multiples of each for the both of them. There were several weekends with 5-6 games and on those occasions, the games were not local.
 
So, the cornstalks that did not grace the front door, are still in their square although not really standing. Tomato cages, bean teepees, watering vessels DO still need to be put away but the sunflower heads will remain – the birds can surely enjoy the seeds for some time to come.
 
And, guess what – I am not inspired to do any of these things although my husband has been very good at emptying the remaining pots and dumping pumpkins left behind from my Halloween display. He probably knows I am already into “holiday” mode – planning Thanksgiving and then hitting Christmas with full stride. He was pruing boxwood and the berries from our crepe myrtle boxwtoday and all I could focus on was how the box had been pruned too soon to keep for an advent wreath, but the berries would make a great addition. Since Big Garden is also a cutting garden, I do enjoy bringing in flowers and then learned to “branch out” to other areas of my yard for inspiration.
 
I will also be seeking inspiration for next spring – can’t wait for spring already!