A Walk Through the “Garden”

Hello! Today I’m calling this video a garden tour for lack of a better reference, but I don’t truly have a “garden”. I have tomatoes started and they are going to be fall producers for me, indoors – and I might just force them to live forever so I have fresh tomatoes all of the time. We shall see. I also have a stacking planter that has some herbs and lettuces. Oh, and the potatoes… Those are going in this weekend. The rest of the tour is just a little trip through my oasis and the blank canvas before I get it developed. That’s a shot in the dark because of the fact that we rent our property so there is no telling if we will be here next year or not. However, this year, four years in, I have finally decided to approach it as though we will be and I will just have to adjust accordingly if we are not. Next year I have a spot picked out for a raised bed garden and I hope to get that going. I say I’m going to do something like this every year and I never do, so hopefully I will hunker down and plan and save all winter long so that when spring hits I can hit the ground running!

That brings me to this talk of legacy… Jessica at Roots and Refuge Farm is always talking about legacy and leaving the land with things growing and producing, and I don’t disagree (or rather – she has completely skewed my mindset for the better). Legacy is important. It’s how we bless future generations, even if they aren’t ours. So with that in mind, I’ve finally committed this year to planting things on the property that I live on that will come back year after year, and spread. When I moved in there was already an existing apple tree, which you will visit briefly in today’s video. That first spring (2017) I bought a packet of asparagus seeds on a whim at the hardware store (which I still have stashed). I never did plant those little buggers because I kept telling myself that this place wasn’t permanent so what’s the point? I won’t be able to enjoy them anyway.

Fast forward to 2021 and what have I been saying all summer long? I’d be enjoying a bountiful harvest of asparagus right now if I had just planted those seeds when I bought them. Back in 2017 I didn’t think I’d be living at this place for any length of time so I didn’t allow myself to truly do anything that was long term, but now I feel like even if I’m gone next year, then someone else will be able to reap the rewards right away without having to put in the effort and maybe, just maybe I’ll be lucky enough that the next place I go has some little surprises like that for me.

This year I’ve planted mint, ground elder, irises, vinca vine… I’m rooting some clematis and trumpet vine, I’ll be spreading hollyhock seeds, I am going to plant those asparagus seeds this fall, I have some daffodils to put in the ground, I have an experiment going with some cuttings of roses and lilacs from my momma, and I have a ton more perennial seeds that I’m going to make sure go in the ground. That and I’m going to collect as many milkweed seed pods as I can and plant a huge pollinator/butterfly garden in the back. There’s probably more that I am forgetting as well as some failures, such as trying to root some sweet peas and sumac. But! That does not mean I won’t try again. If we are here for even one more year, this property is going to be even more beautiful.

In the spring I intend to plant grass seed, or find a solution (I have a big package of red clover seeds) in the area where they replaced our septic tank last spring (2020). That whole process disrupted the seed bank and some much nasty thistle grew where the ground was bare. Yuck.

I’ve also started a project where I am just taking field rock and doing some landscaping (free materials and a project for me? Yes please!) and I have taken some big timbers and started to section off a parking area.

One more thing, as if I have the time/resources (and I may not even get to it), is to build an actual platform to keep our firewood on, because right now it is just a giant pile with overgrown grass and I truly hate it.

I hope you enjoy my little escape-zone. I filmed this footage at the very end of June so it’s already time for an update. I’ll get one out, but there’s more too see and talk about before that happens!

Tell me about how you want to leave legacy. Tell me what you’re growing and what you hope to grow in the future, AND, tell me what’s inspired you to do so!

I hope you enjoy this video today, if so, please comment, like, and subscribe – and share it with someone you think would enjoy it, too!

xoxo

-S

Snow Day and Regrowing Kitchen Scraps

Today was a Snow Day.

. . . What?

It’s April 10th. I just *literally* talked about how “spring has sprung” and there is so much to do outside, et cetera, et cetera, and here we are experiencing a snow day.

No matter! I actually love snow days. I love, love, LOVE getting snowed in. When I was a kid that meant no school (heck yeah! School was the worst ☉▵☉凸) and as an adult it meant no work (see the previous sentiment). What that used to equate to for me was sleeping until noon and getting up and watching T.V.

Not anymore! For the last year or so I absolutely adored snow days because it meant a cozy fire and me cooking all day and/or snuggling on the couch with my dog/dogs. ♥‿♥ So – still a hint of the laziness factor, but much more productive and soothing with cups and cups of piping hot coffee. Or tea (which has been my passion lately). Or hot cocoa (homemade of course).

The only sad thing about the snow day today is that I’ve got such an itchy case of spring fever! I want to get my gardens lined out and just start growing. Honestly, for my zone, it’s too early anyway – but that’s not going to stop me from starting seeds!

At any rate – I spent most of my day cleaning and have been working on an all day batch of chicken and noodles that I’m about to complete with the addition of some mashed potatoes and beer bread. Yummy!

Since last fall, I’ve started really taking up a fascination with regrowing kitchen scraps. Why do I always choose to do this stuff in the winter when I’m not very well equipped to grow something? Gah!

Here’s what I’ve got right now:

 

Butter Lettuce

This one is Butter Lettuce. My absolute favorite lettuce! I cheated a little bit because I bought it in one of those clam shell boxes that the lettuce has the root attached. I just stuck it some water in a sunny window. It seems to be doing pretty good after about three or so weeks. (I just started a gardening journal on Monday so I don’t really know what date I started any of these on. Bad Saho!)

Celery

From left to right: a leek in water (BUT I don’t think guy is going to make it. I got it from my brother-in-law and I think he cut it too close to the bottom, but I wanted to try it anyway.) This on is from St. Patrick’s day. Next is a celery in water with a few stones at the bottom. It’s the oldest one I have going and the healthiest. I started this one some time in February just from the end of the celery when I was done with it. They seem to be pretty hearty! Lastly is an ice berg lettuce heart from last Saturday, in water. It’s doing better than the picture makes it look. I seem to struggle with these guys. I always end up trying to grow them and they do well for a little while and then seem to fizzle out. Hopefully, if this one takes off I can get it into some soil fast enough and it will do great!

Potatoes

And finally. . . This is the stuff I have ready to start. 2 sweet potatoes that have been growing slips since before I had to put my sweet little Gato dog down.       o(╥﹏╥)o There is a russet potato that I pulled from the basket today, a golden potato in the back that you can barely even tell what it is because it is SO ready to go in the soil. It’s from probably Thanksgiving. A garlic that I want to plant. Also there is a single yellow cherry tomato. We get these from the grocery shopping store all of the time and we love them so I’m going to grow it from a slice this year. I tried that method out on a slicing tomato from the store in January and it worked really well, but it needed to go in the ground and I had no ground to put it in, so it expired. Dang it.

Confession time: sometimes I murder plants. ●︿● My mom told me the other day that my brother thinks that I’m half chlorophyll and my sister complained to me recently about how she doesn’t have a green thumb and I do. But I was there once, as well, and a lot of the time I still am. I do have great success growing plants, but I have just as much failure. The only reason I have the knowledge that I do is the trial and error that comes with it. Nobody is good at growing plants right away. I don’t care what they tell you.

So get out there and try it! I know my mom had some really good luck growing carrot tops! They are so pretty!

What have you grown recently? Are you experimenting with any kitchen scrap re-growth? Do you have spring fever as bad as I do? Let me know in the comments below!

XoXo

-S

P.S.- Sorry for the delay on this one today, it seems as though the storm was severely affecting my internet connection. Sad Face.