Monday, November 7, 2016

Spring Gardening



Spring is certainly springing around here, although it could be warmer down here in the chilly south. I have mustard greens growing madly. What does one even do with mustard greens? Anyone?


Baby peas with their tiny tendrils waving about as they twine around the pea sticks (apricot tree prunings).



While walking the dog on the river path the other day I found a huge patch of native river mint, so I brought some home in a doggy bag! While I was planting it (in a tub. Mint will take over the whole world if you let it..) I also took the opportunity to take my common mint, Moroccan mint and round leafed native mint out of their too small pots and pop them in the tub too, so they can all fight it out together. May the best mint win! I will keep the tub under the garden tap so it gets all the moisture that the mint family loves. In the garden I have also found woolly apple mint, so I think we have the
mint family nicely represented here at Chez Blueday.


Due to an exceptionally wet spring we have an exceptionally enthusiastic snail population this year, and I have been struggling to keep my direct seeded baby plants uneaten, so I have taken the drastic step of planting seeds indoors. Gasp! This is not something I normally do, due to its requirement of constant and consistent watering and maintenance, but needs must.


I have found that wooden clothes pegs make excellent seed markers. I have been doing my seed planting on the kitchen table, using a spoon to add soil to pots. This is much more convenient than crouching over seed trays in a windy garden. I can see why people build potting sheds.. but why bother when you have a perfectly serviceable kitchen table? I am sure hardly anyone has noticed the potting mixture all over the floor..


Made a trellis for cucumbers and melons out of tomato stakes, apricot tree prunings and string. Projects that involve string and sticks are absolutely my level of DIY. We will call it rustic upcycling shall we?

What are your spring (or autumn) garden projects? Or are you the type of person who feels that gardening is best left to Other People (much like me and DIY)..

4 comments:

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Jo. Your place is looking really good and I notice that you have Australian yellow leaved lettuce next to your green mustard plants. Both are yum, but the mustard only gets hotter the longer you leave it. Shortly you will enjoy green mustard brain pain! It is quite tasty too and is usually consumed fresh - check for cabbage moth grubs as the season goes on though. There are so many good ideas in your garden. I liked the seedling pots particularly as they reduce transplant shock! :-)! If I were smarter, I would have used those for the ongoing tomato dramas here. The peas around the cuttings are a great idea too. I never would have thought of that. Clothes pegs are a good idea too, which I probably should have used this afternoon as I watched some of the clothes blow away in the warm winds... Fortunately I found them all before it rained this afternoon... Melons. I'm trying them here too - sweet Siberian - so fingers crossed. Cheers. Chris

lucindasans said...

I can feel the life energy bursting in your garden. And all your bustling energy. I finally accepted my limited time and hired a man to get my front garden in control. Now I can see everything, I will plant some plants to replace the bamboo and wandering Jew.

I have never had success with mint. In my last house, where I gardened and other things grew beautifully, mint just wouldn't thrive. Even after multiple attempts.

Jo said...

Chris, the lettuce is a local strain bred by a nearby seed merchant. It is called Slo-Bolt lettuce, and it certainly lives up to its name. If well watered it crops for months. I save lots of seed from this one!

Lucinda, I had a gardener for a year or so after baby no. 4 was born. It was bliss!! He came every fortnight and slowly worked through all the jobs that had been piling up for years:)

GretchenJoanna said...

Your rustic upcycling is inspiring. I saved a couple of branches pruned from my plum trees, hoping to use them for trellising my peas, but they wouldn't fit in the boxes. Maybe when my trees get bigger I can glean better-shaped clippings - I want to do this because the tidier system I used takes too much time to accomplish, and because I think your way provides a kind of support that the peas take to better :-)

This is a rare occurrence, when you and I are doing the same thing in our gardens at once! All my peas will quietly send down their roots through the winter, and not look above ground as though they are doing much - then suddenly in February they will shoot up and start bearing. During the winter the snails can decimate them when I'm not looking, but having these raised bed boxes has reduced that problem so far.

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