Saturday, June 23, 2012

Red, Yellow, Orange

 It's cherry tomato crazy around here. I have alot of cherry tomatoes, but the large ones are struggling with my watering issues! I have been setting irrigation clocks for others, and I totally hate to do that because it is a guessing game anyway, then I came home and reset mine adding more minutes, and I watched the leaves on the tomatoe plants turn yellow one by one each day as the yellow leaves climbed up the plants and the plants didn't adjust to the additional water, so I turned down the minutes and was so freaked out that I didn't want to turn the water back up least I overwater again! So I waited too long so everything got a bit too dry, and now I just adjusted the water again!  I am at 8 minutes at 5:45, 8:30, 10:30, 12:00, 2:30 and 5:00. Total 48 minutes.

Here is the color I want to paint the chicken coop.  It is the color of day lilies and I purchased the additive that makes the paint translucent so that the wood will show through similar to a stain.  It is sooo hot that I am sure that will affect the paint application, so I have to begin this project when it is shady and cooler out, like 5:00 in the am. It looks like a loud bright orange but I think it will dull down a bit.  Next is to try it on a test board!

Thanks for visiting! To all of my gardening friends, carry on and hurry back!

Chicken Posturing

 Here is the chicken coop that I am building. I haven't quite commited to having chickens yet but by the time I am finished building it, I will have sorted that all out.

The inside has a screen floor with a PVC ladder and a shelf with nesting boxes that can be lifted out for cleaning.

The lid lifts up to reveal the nesting boxes and it provides a little bit of ventilation that will have to be modified for winter, but for now it keeps the coop from being a roaster.

Here is the picture of the roof with the hinge that allows both sides of the roof to be lifted up. 

It has been a blast to build! I have to admit that I built it completely with a handsaw because coffee is my drug of choice and I can't be trusted with power saws after my 4th cup!

Thanks for stopping by for a visit! To all of my gardening friends,  carry on and hurry back!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Crossed Poppies and Garden Changes

 The final blooms of the frilly poppies are underway now. There are crosses of frilly pink poppies with breadseed poppies, and they are huge! Even the poppy seed heads are huge as against my wrist in the above photo. That is the breadseed influence.

I am saving the seeds of the crosses to see what they do next year, since they will be crossed yet again.

 I finally got rid of the gravel in the garden. It used to be against the sidewalk and ran like an island through the middle of the yard. Walking on gravel is like walking on marbles in my book.  I hated it, and I so happy that it is gone.  It is one of those little things that I am glad that I can cross off of the list!

After the rock was removed, the area really opened up, so I decided to increase the larger circle bed by another foot in diameter.  It added more space to plant more vegetables! Dance of joy!

 The columbine seed that I picked from a flower from a trip to Taos, New Mexico in 2010 came up last year, but it was only recently when it flowered that I realized that it was the yellow columbine from Taos, and not the red and yellow mix seed that I had planted there since. 
 The iris are almost finished.  This is the last of the iris show.  It was magnificent!

Now as you can see in the photo in the white bed against the wall, the tomatoes are starting to come on strong, and they will be the focus of the garden for the next few months. I have 33 tomato plants this year!  

 Here is another shot of tomatoes in the bed next to the patio.

I have been looking for patio chaise lounge chairs for over a year.  I wanted something that did not have the planned obsolescence built into them, like so many of the chairs do now with the grasscloth type fabric used as the chair seats and backs.  That wouldn't last more than one season in my yard! So I found these chaise lounge chairs at Lowes, and I can still use the red cushions that I made a few years ago!

 Here is the current look of the new bed I that I am working on to beautify the area next to the back entrance gate (the personal development area of the Feng Shui bagua).  It is planted with honeysuckle, different cannas and a climbing Don Juan rose.  I have marked the wall for the installation of the wooden lattice, and that will be installed before long.

 This is they way the new bed ties together with the rest of the garden.

The lambs ears are flowering and they are so inviting with their softness.

Enjoy your day!

Thanks for visiting! To all of my gardening friends, carry on and hurry back!
These are the re-rooted tomatoes! It took exactly 2 weeks from the time they were laying limp on the ground broken at the stem, until they could hold their own with their newly formed roots and be planted back where they were originally planted in the garden!

I have since planted them and they are smaller in size then their counterparts, but they should catch up to where you could hardly notice the difference, but I thought you would want to know what happened!

Propagating tomatoes from cuttings is easy!

Thanks for visiting! To all of my gardening friends, carry on and hurry back!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Propagation Event

 What seemed like the wind that had broken off my tomatoes at the ground and blown them around the yard, was actually discovered to be Rolly Pollies (Pill Bugs) having nestled down into the moist darkness next to the stem and they chewed through the stem of the tomatoes and the wind just took off with them and blew them around the yard. So I took the limp broken tomato plant and stuck it into some moist potting soil and placed it into a large terrarium, sprayed it with a fine mist and covered it to keep in the humidity.

 The next day I see that 3 more tomatoes had fallen to the evil Rolly Pollies! So this called for a larger moisture retentive covered something so that they would all fit, and this storage box was perfect.  I sprayed down all of the tomatoes and added the glass of water for additional moisture and quickly put on the lid.
Here are the tomatoes the next morning completely rehydrated. If we go on like this, they will sprout roots and hopefully do so fast so that I can get them into the ground and get plenty of tomatoes this summer! This collection of tomatoes currently hanging on by a thread are Sweet 100, Roma, Brown Sugar and Hawaiian Tropic.

I then went outside and sprinkled Diatomaceaous Earth down into the holes around the stems the wind created by blowing them in all directions, because that is where the Rolly Pollies are hiding out during the day.  Last year I had tomatoes and zucchini with holes in them, and I suspected mice or something because the holes in the fruit were huge. Then I found one of my pepper plants laying on the ground and when I picked it up there were 100's of Rolly Pollies on it! When I found that out I raked up all of the mulch in the yard in an angry rampage because those bugs had multiplied into an pillaging night army!

Now I am considering placing mulch in the walkways for asthetic reasons, and I might have to shake myself and rethink that whole idea!  In the meantime, I am using the D.E. and also a snale and slug bate that is made of Iron Phosphate that is essentually coated iron pellets (think yellow Grape Nuts)that when they Rolly Pollies eat it, they cease eating and eventually die. 

I am sure that this will be an ongoing problem but hopefully this year I won't have to pick my tomatoes while they are still green like I did last year!

Thank you for visiting! To all of my gardening friends, carry on and hurry back!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Waiting with Longing

The iris are blooming. It is the event that I wait for all year long. I am sure that I am waiting secretly for next years iris blooming even now. The lovely iris on the lower left were a gift and I planted them and waited over a year to see their color and they are delightful! It is called Jesse's Song.
These blue iris are called Full Tide and I hope they take the place over.
In addition to the iris blooming, the Carnation Poppies are starting to flower. I hope these take over too!
Here is a lovely iris that someone gave someone else who had them in a pot and they had never seen them bloom, but they didn't want them anymore because they didn't want to wait I suppose, so they gave them to me. They are fabulous! Right now I have yellow iris that someone gave me that I planted in the ground, that I have never seen, so I have a bit of ambivilence too I suppose. If they bloom this season all the better, but I might be in for another year.
All of my tomatoes are planted into the ground now. I had 35 tomatoes planted and so far I have lost 7 to the wind. It seems that the rolly pollies are nestling down in the moist dirt next to the stem and munching away at the stems below ground in the moist darkness until the stem is eaten through, so the wind blows and just picks up the top of the plant and blows it away! So I stuck the broken stem (lower leaves removed) into some moist potting mix, and place it into this terrarium and sprayed it with water in hope that it will grow new roots! This is a sweet 100 tomato and as I grow my tomatoes by seed, I cringed at the thought of having to buy a new tomato plant especially after I had given away about 50 plants because I didn't have any space for them all. So I looked up propagation boxes on the internet and now I am going to be sticking tomato cuttings until I get a handle on the damage that those evil rolly pollies have caused!
Thanks for coming by for a visit! To all of my gardening friends carry on and hurry back!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Run Out of Room

Here is the first Climbing Iceberg rose from the new rose bush that is intended to eventually cover the arbor! Yes, I would like about 50 more of those flowers please!
When you plant unknown iris, you wait for for over a year depending upon when you bring them home for that slight hint of color in the forming bud to their eventual full blown glory and this one was worth the wait! Looking it up on google images, I have found it to be Eleanor Rosevelt. I have about 5 stands of unknown iris and quite possibly I have spread this particular beauty throughout my yard.
Such a little thing can make a big difference! Here is a simple emitter stuck into my watering can and I use this everyday and it saves me from having to walk over to the hose spicket and turn on the hose, then to the end of the hose that is draped across the yard, oh, I need to take the sprayer off, (damn, the water is on!, back to..... ) then fill up the container, then back to the spicket to turn the hose off (or on depending...), then put the sprayer nozzle back on..... Believe it or not I found myself taking my shoes off at the door and walking into the house to fill this thing up at the sink because it seemed less daunting! So now it self fills, and I always have a half full watering can!
The wind has picked up so I have moved all of my babies into the house! I started planting the beds with tomatoes yesterday. I still have winter vegetables in two beds that aren't ready to pull yet. These are tomatoes, peppers and eggplants that were seeded the first week of February. The list includes Hawaiian Tropic, Brown Sugar, Roma, Sweet 100, Violet Jasper, Black Mauri, Warren's Yellow (Tomatoes), Casper, Japanese Long, Black Beauty (Eggplant), Tomatillo, And Red and Yellow Marconi (Pepper).
It's unfortunate but all of the beds are planted, and I believe that I have run out of room....
Thanks for stopping by! To all of my gardening friends, Carry on and hurry back!