A foggy mist hovered over our yard this morning. As I waited for the early sun to peek behind the puffy clouds, my I-Pad photos reminded me of how blessed I am with our beautiful yard. I feel every corner speaks to us in an enchanting whisper. There’s no place that I’d rather be in the summer!
With summer warming up and days becoming longer, I take afternoon and early strolls around the yard to see my flowers and plants progress. I think my mother- in- law told me that she used to do that.
This spring has been pretty cold and rainy until now. My purple Coneflowers are not doing well. All I see are green leaves and they’re much shorter and skimpier than last year. The flowers are nowhere in sight! I’m hoping Miracle Gro will energize them but maybe the damage has been done. There were probably too many frigid nights and wet days for them. Any suggestions?
I don’t know the name of this perennial patch but I love them! One is blossomed which means the patch will be purple soon enough. It’s a lovely addition to our yard and the humming birds love them!
I’m waiting for my Coreopsis to bloom teeny yellow flowers that brighten up my front yard. Shown here is my latest of my dad’s wood projects, the deer planter. Inside it is Johnny Jump ups that I got free from a Landaff resident. One day Tom and I were riding around and found all these pots of flowers labeled free. I passed on the tip to my daughter- in- law leading her to stop by and take a few plants gratefully.
So there it is…our little yard with annuals thriving and perennials on their way. Soon they’ll bloom and I’ll post their progress.
Hello blogging friends, it’s been a hectic few weeks with me finishing up school, attending a few events and squeezing in outside garden time. Every day I thought of a potential blog post but never quite got there. I apologize for such a hiatus but I guess I needed it for my sanity. Now I should have ample time for writing and snapping photos as our school is out for the summer!
My primary summer focus is maintaining and harvesting our garden. Every morning I walk a few feet in the rich green grass damp with morning dew to our little plot. Dressed in old t-shirts and sweat or yoga pants, I carry a garden hoe and metal can for weeds. It’s my morning peaceful ritual, joining the variety of birds, an owl that lives in our woods, croaking frogs ( in our pond), deer and turkeys that all love this land as much as I do. Getting down in the dirt is my daily therapy where problems disintegrate and a strength and resolve grows within me.
It’s been a tough start to our growing season as nights have been quite cool for weeks, plummeting to the 40’s and sometimes 30’s. In the last month it’s rained a lot but it is waning, transitioning into warm pleasant days now. I worry for my tomatoes I started by seed, as the leaves are purple and they look like frost may have harmed them. I’ve had to replant a row of carrots as well as oregano because the seeds didn’t sprout. Time will tell.
One of my things to do is mount the tripods for the cucumber plants for a trellis. It involves Tom’s help where he pounds the stakes in and I tie them together with strong string. That way the cukes will hang up on them instead of being on the ground for moles to nibble on.
As I wrap up this post I wish you pleasant growing weather as you garden in your back yard or in deck pots. I hope this finds you all well, wherever you are physically and emotionally. I look forward to spending the summer with you, updating you of what’s going on in my rural world and hearing your stories as well.
Spring has definitely arrived here! Although we’ve had loads of rain, there have been sunny and pleasant warm days too. I’ve worried about my emerging flowers as many nights have been 40 degrees F and chilly! So far they’ve withstood the temperature changes from day to night. Hopefully our nights will warm up soon!
A year or two ago my niece Michele gifted me these delicate little flowers. She warned me they may not come up as they were a transplant. I planted them out front with anticipation of seeing what the flowers would resemble and what color they would be. I’m not sure but my guess is they are an Iris variety. Last growing season came and went. The leaves were a rich beautiful green and healthy looking , yet the flowers didn’t bloom.
I didn’t think anymore of it until this spring when the plants came up once again. This time I was surprised one afternoon to discover these delicate purple beauties! It immediately brought a smile to my face and warmed my heart. Sometimes flowers take awhile to burst through, to overcome their challenges. ( like people)
My annual flowers, Geraniums, Petunias, Bicopa and the Spike enhance my house and front yard. Someday I may ask Tom to make a window box for the kitchen, one that can house herbs. Wouldn’t it be cool to simply open the screen and cut fresh herbs for cooking? I think so! In the meantime I really enjoy walking out to the garden to snip herbs.
This Columbine’s flower hasn’t opened yet but I believe it will soon! There are a few wild Columbines growing by the side of the road nearby. I guess that maybe a house was there at one time or that the seeds spread through bird droppings. Columbines come in different colors such as pink, red or white.
Here’s our Lilac bush that almost succumbed to a snowplow a few years ago. Tom nursed it back to where it’s thriving and even the rich lavender colored blossoms are fuller than before! There’s nothing sweeter in a spring yard than aromatic Lilacs!
In the North corner of our front yard stands a few Cherry trees and a couple of tall Cedars. It’s a lovely space of shade and hosts dozens of birds who love to hang out in the branches above. The last few years I’ve put my small table there with a chair for a peaceful spot for summer lunches.
In the future I wish to clean out the overgrown weeds within the trees. Tiger Lilies that we’re planted years ago grow there but don’t do well. The challenge for me is the Poison Ivy that grows there, preventing me from cleaning up and transforming a chaotic mess into something beautiful. Tom has tried to kill it but it keeps coming back. Once he really gets it, this corner project will start. I’ll keep you posted.
I’m grateful for my flowers around the yard and excited to continue planting perennials that will contribute to our little cottage’s yard. It’s these colors and Lilac scents that ground me. Dreams of this haven get me through the long winter with eager anticipation of green grass, rich pinks, purples and reds.
Happy Spring to you all!I hope you have lovely and colorful flowers that enhance your yard and your life!
the weather could be snowy and frigid yet the next day could be warm and mild
There’s a Northeaster forecasted when spring is supposed to have emerged ( this happened a few weeks ago)
People wave to you on the road if you know them or not
leaving food outdoors leads to wild visitors in the night
you are on a first name basis with the post master, the police chief
and the town clerk
Spring brings eager smiles, light hearts and open windows
Most days there is a hushed presence of nature
only to be interwoven
with soft twittering bird songs
and serene owl hoots
This is the country melody
that we all are mesmerized by
You know when you are in NH
When a tranquil peace hovers and rising mountains
Sugar maples, white birches and thick pines surround you
The busy world continues its crass noise
yet life here is slow and meaningful
country living with a stillness that
keeps one centered
If you haven’t visited New Hampshire in the northeast of the United States, you must deep in the summer or in the pleasant days of Autumn. It’s a chance to escape the rat race and explore the White Mountains and nature at its best!
Here we are in May in northern New Hampshire. The air still feels cool yet sometimes the temperature reaches 60 degrees! This afternoon the sun tickled our skin as Tom and I worked on placing the cover on the greenhouse. It took all our patience as we stretched the unforgiving plastic over the frame. As we pulled and tugged, ticks crept up our pants. I must have pulled off close to fifty throughout the day. I got to the point that my skin was crawling and I was itchy, thinking more were invading my space.
Yikes, ticks are a real problem here in spring to mid summer. They hitch a ride on humans, deer, fox, moose and most wildlife. We have them in our tall grass and they burrow under leaves in the flower gardens. I plan to buy some tick deterrent to spray on our clothes so they leaves us alone!
Already the inside of the greenhouse is warm and toasty. We placed our annual flowers in there until next weekend when I’ll make my window boxes. My started plants are in there as well. Some aren’t doing well as I started them too early and they didn’t get enough sun. I have tomatoes, cukes and squashes that will be okay to plant.
Today I’ll work out in my vegetable garden, finishing raking and cleaning up. I should’ve done it last fall but didn’t get to it. Next weekend Tom will add bags of sand and manure and till the plot. Soon after we will plant our garden for the year! I’m beyond excited for this as I wait all winter to tackle this loved hobby of mine!
As I close this post I wonder how you all are doing. Are you immersing yourself in gardening? Does your season start now or have you been at it for awhile? I wish you much happiness with gardening and hope your harvest is amazing!
While browsing through last April’s posts, I stumbled upon this post I wrote. It’s about how New Englanders thrive in all the seasons and the extremes. It takes a strength and pereseverance to live here, to remain content while the harsh conditions can test your endurance. As winter shuts its door and welcoming spring gradually begins, I wish to share this once again.
When March rolls around most New Englanders hope, even dare to think of spring! The 2019 calendar says it’s officially March 20th but we all know it will be long after that. Our yard still sports mounds of snow, icy slopes and chilly icicles dangle from the rooftop. Snowstorms still clobber our region with multiple inches of the white stuff and whipping winds.
When I mention March madness I don’t mean basketball. If you have read my blog posts you’ve probably learned that my interests don’t include sports. My definition of March madness is the hovering cabin fever that sets in, especially in New England where winter consumes many months of the year. It’s the itch for beautiful pastoral scenes, bright sun, blooming blossoms, singing birds, open windows and growing grass.
As March winds down, there is slight evidence that spring really is here. The daytime temperatures rise to the 40’s and 50’s, and this coming weekend it’s predicted to be in the 60’s! A burst of sun and needed warmth is what we New Hampshire residents crave! Surely the pleasant weather will break up any March madness or craziness that exists from cabin fever.
As the mounds of snow slowly melt, the warmer days of April are just next week. Gradually temperatures will rise, back dirt roads will turn to mucky mud and wood stoves may not have to be stoked as generously. Spring days will replace the madness of winter!
Here’s a cheer to the end of the March Madness! Welcome spring!
Here I am on a sunny Sunday launching my summer garden by planting indoors! I got the idea last week after reading a bit about it. First I discovered Bear Creek Heirloom Seeds on Facebook from a friend’s post. She had just received her seed stash and was excited for the growing season! I did some research and decided to go ahead and buy my seeds instead of what I usually do. Every year I frequent Wal- mart and buy organic seeds from Burpee or Better Homes and Garden. But how do I know if they are GMO? Also all that time I was supporting a huge company instead of favoring a family run business. Additionally I would buy my tomato, cucumber, eggplant, all squashes, and basil plants already grown at a local greenhouse. (Here in New Hampshire you need a jump start for successful growing as it’s a short season. ) Now I’ve resolved to support this seed company owned by a little family in Missouri. All their seeds are organic and GMO and are heirloom seeds.
First I jotted down my growing list and decided what seeds I’d start now, giving them just over two months indoors. I’m growing Black Beauty eggplant, crookneck Summer Squash, Zucchini, orange Butternut Squash, Martino’s Roma Tomatoes, Tappy’s Heirloom Tomatoes, Straight Eight cucumbers, Boston Pickling cucumbers, corn and cabbage ( free seeds the company sent me).
Next I figured out what seeds could wait until June. I always plant carrots, green beans, lettuce,spinach, thyme, cilantro, oregano, and beets then. Those will do well in the warm ground and won’t need a boost.
We have a pretty warm room facing South. It’s bright and sunny, an ideal spot for germinating plants. Tom brought in our six foot folding table and placed in front of the window. I bought a growing tray and dome for a greenhouse effect for some of the seeds, a growing light with two LED lightbulbs, Happy Frog Potting Mix and wooden popsicle sticks for marking the types. Luckily we saved the plastic plant trays from last year. They are perfect to start the seeds with little wells in a tray of four.
I opened the soil mix and stirred it around, preparing it for planting. It warmed up easily in the window. Tom made a marker for 1/4 and 1/2 inch holes to plant the seeds so I could easily place it in, tuck a seed or two in and then gently cover with the mix. Each plant has a different planting depth.After prepping each tray I put the veggie marker in so I wouldn’t forget! It would be easy to do…the whole time I was visiting with my daughter in law and sometimes I can’t do two things at a time! Haha!
I tried really watering them well the first day. I bought a little water spritzer for watering the seeds, yet I don’t know how much to soak them from here on out. I sprayed it several times as the mix dried out quickly in the heated area. Today I’ll soak it well and hope that I get in a routine of watering everyday.
I intend on using the growing light on gloomy and dark days and a few hours after the sun goes down. I don’t feel comfortable leaving it on when we go to work as it gets quite hot. It will help keep the babies toasty.
So that was my Sunday project, immersing in the potting mix, plopping seeds in and hopefully giving birth to our garden gems. This hobby probably came from my dad, who has gardened much of his adult life as well as his father, my grandfather who has passed away years ago.
Are you planning or planting your seeds now? Do you have any advice for me, as this is really new to me?
The other day the latest Gurney’s catalog arrived launching my inner gardening planner to action. Although it’s been years since I’ve purchased anything, they continue to send it in hopes that I eventually buy. As February rapidly approaches, I dreamily think of spring gardening.
Who else jots down garden ideas, browses through perennial books and sketches plots in mid winter? I do happily , while I can’t wait to dig in the earth and be connected to nature. My new spring goal is to plant a new perennial bed in front of my husbands’ beautiful barn. I am pretty excited to put up our greenhouse ( that my dad gave us) and start seeds a little earlier! I’ll keep you all posted with it all!
I’ve gardened many years without a fence. Through the years I took my chances and shared my lot with deer, raccoon and skunks to name a few. Then when we moved our garden to our house lot, I received an early sign that a fence probably was priority. The first time we tilled the garden, within hours we had a deer investigate just a few feet away. I think he/she smelled the pungent fresh soil from the nearby woods and wished to see what all this was about…maybe hoping for fresh veggies that early.
Even though I knew that I needed a fence, I put it off. The last straw was when I simply left the plot to go inside to make supper. An hour and a half later upon approaching the garden, I discovered that a woodchuck had destroyed and eaten my whole row of broccoli. All that remained were forlorn roots and a green stem sadly bent beyond shape.
A couple of summers ago we were fortunate to have my dad give us some simple fencing and we put it up. We attached sturdy sticks to hold up the frame and believe it or not, it held up pretty well even through the rough winter weather. Last fall the wind and elements tore down some of the fence and snapped the sticks we had in place.
Yesterday Tom and I put the fence back up with grade stakes I bought at a local Agway farming store. I think they’ll be sturdy and last a few years. The only regret I have is that they should be a little taller, about five feet. They will do and serve the purpose but next time when I replace them I’ll be sure to buy taller stakes.
Many of you know we are renovating our house one bit at a time. Every summer we do a little bit more and eventually it will be finished to our liking. You can see Tom’s summer project in the background, the side of our house that we will continue to put cedar siding on.
This winter I bought this old post office box from Ebay pretty cheap. At first I had inside for decor, then hung it on our front door but finally I’ve decided on its true placement. Here it hangs on my garden fence, holding all my little shovels and trowels and dowels for the plants. I’m happy with it and its rustic mint green finish. I’m always trying to incorporate antiques and unique things in my inside and outside spaces.
A sturdy fence keeps our planted veggies safe and ready for our family to eat. In these woodsy mountainous parts, a fence is essential! When we go on our local drives in the warm sun, we notice many neighbors have a sturdy fence. Must be that they don’t want to share with the deer either!
Do you have a fence around your home or garden? Sometimes fences serve as barriers to keep animals out. Other times they are beautiful works of art, a part of the landscape design.