re-using flowers

My gardens have taken a back seat in my life lately, but just last week I said to myself, that’s it. It’s time to organize and clean-up the front flower beds.

It’s time to trim away the browning greenery, cut down the lilies gone by, pull out the ever encroaching weeds… in general – tidy up the flowers that are still growing and keep my front entrance looking bright and cheery. But what to do about the gaps left behind from annuals gone past…?

‘Aha’, I thought to myself.

I have some beautiful French Marigolds in the back garden – why not simply transplant a few up front?

So that’s what Finn and I did.

And while I don’t have any photos of the actual transplanting – it’s a delicate balance working with a three year old, a shovel and the roots of a plant  – I did manage to take a few photos of the front garden now…

front garden

marigolds filled in

This lovely stopped by while we were working…

monarch

And these buzzing beauties are still around…and loving all the marigolds…

busy bees

And while we did leave a few marigolds in the back garden, (we still have swiss chard, gourds and leeks to harvest), the color the transplants added to the front was just what they were needing! The back and front gardens benefit from these fall beauties.

And I didn’t have to buy a thing.

If your in need of a change in your flower beds, or want to start a new bed, think about utilizing plants/bulbs elsewhere in your yard.

Who doesn’t like free flowers?

Enjoy the weekend!

how does your garden grow?

Mine has been up and down…the weather has been anything but stable…covering, uncovering, planting, re-planting, attempting to harden-off young plants, though not too soon as we’ve had such cold, wet weather – though tomorrow the forecast is calling for 80+ degrees! What?

Todays weather was extraordinary! So while Finn napped I quickly planted nasturtiums and zinnias outside and started to transplant leeks, but the nap did not last long enough…there is always tomorrow and tomorrow will be sunny again…thankfully!

Here’s a glimpse at what is growing…

baby lettuce

baby lettuce

more baby lettuce aka mesclun mix

more baby lettuce
   aka mesclun mix

         baby spinach

baby spinach

close-up baby spinach

close-up baby spinach

       young kale

young kale

 swiss chard beginnings

swiss chard beginnings

tomato plants

tomato plants

cucumbers in waiting

cucumbers in waiting

scary scarecrowEvery garden needs a scarecrow, right? Hat and flannel, from the dump, of course…

snail on brick

Unfortunately, too many of these have made their way into the garden…too many – where do they all come from?

first harvest

first harvest

The first harvest of spinach was such a treat! It was a small harvest, but oh so appreciated…there’s nothing like picking veggies, out of your own garden, and then using them, immediately!

So much work, though so worth it…don’t have enough space for a backyard garden? Try container gardening…especially for the more expensive vegetables and herbs like tomatoes and basil. One plant can yield so much, why not give it a try?

Though, I must admit, I’ve had no luck with my red onions. I started them, in the ground, from seed and they never germinated… I’ve never grown onions before and this year, it seems I won’t be either…any suggestions?

Just because something doesn’t go according to plan the first time, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try again. Gardening is so much about trial and error and learning from others, why not start now? You can grow incredible vegetables and save money – all the while knowing what is in your food as well as where it came from…you can’t put a price on that.

enjoy and happy gardening!

transplanting seedlings into pots

If you don’t have a potting table, simply set-up a work space; indoors or out. I was working indoors for this transplanting project…it was a windy and cold day so I opted for indoor planting to prevent shocking the little ones during their ‘move’… I laid an oil cloth on the floor of my pantry. I love my pantry, it’s a great little space for this task; it gets amazing morning light, its close to the sink and its just the right size. I used an oil cloth for its ability to make clean up quick – simply fold unto itself and shake outdoors…

 

1. Use a container sized accordingly for the next step of growth – I re-use last years pots as well as terra-cotta pots or plastic recyclable food containers filled with potting mix. I use a mix specifically made for herbs and veggies…the flowers love it too.

2. Evenly moisten each individual pot as well as the soil in the new container prior to transplanting. 

3. Gently remove seedling from pot by peeling back (or popping out by gently overturning into your palm/fingers) surrounding container and then lift root ball and place in hole deep enough to cover the stem up to its first set of leaves as well as wide enough to comfortably fit the root mass…fill in around. I transplanted a number of flowers today – below is a morning glory and here on the left, are poppy’s.

4. Water. Place in indirect light. 

5. Keep newly transplanted seedlings out of direct light for 24 hours.

6. Fertilize with an organic liquid blend.

7. Keep moist and in a sunny spot. Transplant outdoors when weather is ready…