Weekly Photo Challenge: Narrow

Matthew 7:13    Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

June2015CranbrookGardens 093

Matthew 7:14     Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

2013AprilFairlaneManor 072

Weekly Photo Challenge: Starting Your Intricate Herb Garden

PoGirlGardens2

With too many herbs to mention by name, where you live determines what and when to plant.  When I was first gardening, I learned the hard way not to assume we were warming up early just because we had an early warm up.  Living in southern Michigan, I plant my cool weather or hardy plants mid-April and the warm weather stuff by Memorial weekend, or end of May sometime.  Check for your area on the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map and prevent frost damage to tender seedlings. As long as your soil is enriched and aerated, all you need to worry about are the three W’s, Watering, Weeding and Watching for pests and your garden should be a success. My most successful gardens were dug by hand in clay soil.  I worked in some peat and manure and that was it, besides watering and organically killing any pest, usually by hand.  Because it was near the country, all the bigger varmints killed the little ones so no varmint damage like I have experienced trying to garden in the city.

In front of my first Garden.

In front of my first Garden.

You need to decide by choice or convenience if you prefer to purchase young plants or start them by seed.  Some seeds you can just toss in the garden soil and some you will want to start indoors and harden off before planting outdoors.  You might try experimenting depending on the type and size of the herb.  Know the size and the needs of all plants so you can better design where you wish to place them in your garden.  Find out which ones are annuals or perennials so you aren’t surprised when come back the next year with a vengeance!  I’ve had spearmint go wild on me, much to my neighbor’s chagrin, and had to weed it back to keep it on my side of the fence.  I would have loved the free spearmint if it were the other way around, but some city folks want their perfect little lawns. You can find a treasure trove of plant and garden information on the various Cooperative Extension Service sites offered by local colleges online now.  Below is a sample page from the book “Vegetable Gardening Know-How” in the herb section to give you some idea.  The author took it from the Cooperative Extension Service of Kansas State University.  The book was published in 1975, FYI. img890 Get to know your herbs.  Currently I only grow those I intend to use for cooking.  I used to grow lavender to give to others that loved it.  I had an allergy with this plant so I finally stopped, as beautiful as it is.  You can decide to grow a little around your yard, planting some in between your other garden plants or actually design a beautiful garden  that you designate for herbs only.  Be sure to lay out your design on paper first, keeping in mind the size and needs of each plant so you don’t end up crowding or shading some.  Don’t plant herbs requiring rich soil right next to those needing dryer soil or shade loving plants next to those needing full sun.  Be aware of these things and you should be OK, providing you don’t over water your garden.  Some starting out actually kill their plants with kindness by over feeding and too much watering because they are afraid the least sign of dry soil means certain death for the plant.  Most need to dry a little between rainfall or watering.  You’ll get the hang of it once you start.  Try to use containers to trap rain if you can.  Some have gone back to actual rain barrels which are great!  WARNING!  Check to be sure you are not breaking the law locally if you do this.  Yes, I am being serious!  In some states, like Colorado, it is illegal to gather rain for gardens even though it saves water in the long run.  It has to do with some petty “you own your home but don’t have water rights.”  First place, I would take that all the way to the Supreme Court if I had to for the simple reason is rain is not water.  It’s rain and can be proven so if facts are presented.  If any area of our government in America becomes that petty and controlling, it needs to be stopped and to do this, you must not obey it and fight it.  That’s the only way we have managed any freedoms in this world at all.

I hope you enjoy the intricacies of these various herbs.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

pogirl'sdeck2difsdglow6

Happy gardening!

Organic Gardening and Global Warming

There is definitely something causing problems with the earth and most of this is from man’s industrialization and pollution of air, land and water.  We only have one earth and even though yesterday was officially Earth Day, every day should be earth day!

It’s very important that we all be part of the solution instead of the problem and try to consciously refrain from the use of products that harm the environment even if you may have to work a little harder to achieve similar results, like weeding, for instance.  You can click on my Green Gardens page for more organic gardening tips.

We had a speaker at my elementary school back in the 1960’s that spoke of all the pollution that was being done at that time and I can only imagine that we are headed towards a point of no return to ever saving this planet one day very soon.

When our bees are gone, so are we.

BeeHanginThere
Even more important than problems with our environment are the problems with the hearts and souls of mankind. There was a reason that religious teachings were so important to any civilized society and we are now finding out why. Even a poorly trained dog is hard to handle but a man who is not told the truth may lose his own soul. I made this video years ago when all the talk of global warming started because I thought there was really more important problems that man faced at this time.

Save the Bees!

Spring will be here before you know it and I really wanted to speak up on behalf of the birds and the bees.  I have a page called green gardens where I gave rather vague information in regards to having an organic garden in a small city yard.  I will be moving out of my home this year, due to an expected foreclosure due to being “Po'” for real.  I still plan on posting more information on gardening organically this year whether or not I am still doing much of it.

If you have a balcony, patio or an actual yard, the very least you should do is get some flowers planted.  You can start early with seeds or just grab a few hardened plants later in spring to plant.  Do what you can to provide food for our nearly depleted honey bees and please don’t use herbicides or pesticides in your area.  They are not usually needed.  Our society thrives on commerce and through the years a number of large corporations have used advertisement in the hopes to convince people how much better their gardens and lives will be with their dangerous products.  Products that may give greener, more perfect lawns but at what price?  The loss of most of our much-needed honey bees as well as the dangerous Runoff poisoning other wildlife, polluting of our waters and needlessly destroying other vegetation.

Any day now all your hardware stores will begin to stock rows of herbicides and pesticides that most of us really have no need of.  Many of us are only too eager to waste money on products that are ruining our environment and the world as a whole with little gained in return.  If these products were marketed fairly, not one person would purchase them.  Yes most have warnings, but how many read that far down?  I remember lawns before these products were invented and they were full of clover, wild violets, dandelions and other ground cover we call weeds.  They were beautiful and full of bees as God and nature intended.  Someone decided by brainwashing the public to want lawns that only the lords and ladies had in England so as gullible and easily swayed as most of us are, we bought it, literally.

Now we need to break those bad habits and get some exercise weeding instead of spraying.  I have lived here 10 years, only used weed and feed once a couple of years after my freshly seeded lawn came in, but made up my mind, never again!  I have a metal telescoping weeder that is fantastic because I don’t have to bend down and it grabs and pulls the weeds out easily.  I do allow clover and wild violets, but anything else goes because living in a city requires that you keep your property up to code.  I will do just what I have to do to conform, but I do refuse to go against my own principles anymore.  I never use chemical fertilizer, but fork in humus, manure and compost as needed.  As I previously mentioned on my GREEN GARDENS page, be sure your plants and seeds purchased are non-GMO.  There is a difference between this and hybrids.  Hybrids are fine.

BeeHanginThere

Summer Garden 2014

I’ve had this Hydrangea shrub for many years.  I admit to having transplanted it several times due to the shade that keeps appearing every couple of years.  Some caused by my trees and shrubs sprouting up in the vicinity and once due to a neighbor planting several very large privacy shrubs near his fence line.  Making up for lost time, it not only decided to bloom all the colors of the rainbow on one shrub.  Nice feat when you consider that the Hydrangea’s color is determined by the PH balance of its soil.

HydrangeaMulti

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Check out the 3 butterflies I caught in mid-air to the left of the flower!

Check out the 3 butterflies I caught in mid-air to the left of the flower!

ButterflyBush2

 

Adventures in Edging My Lawn!

Cool down means catching up on all the garden chores I have neglected.

2013JulyGardenMuffin 005I live on a residential street that just happens to be the major thoroughfare off three main streets and leads to 2 large strip malls due to the design of this subdivision .  Lucky me!  I moved here from a completely different area and had I known this, I would have never have taken the house.  With the three-way stop being directly in front of my home, the carbon monoxide never quits and the neighborhood is very near some large factories.  I also did not know that there was a website www.moving.com/real-estate/compare-cities/index.asp.  Gives you air quality information and this city is not much better than Los Angeles California.

We have just had large areas of the street replaced in which the cement had to be cut by saw for the expansion joints.  It was never washed over so the cement dust flies every time the vehicles drive by.  I was hoping my dust mask will protect my lungs since I used to suffer from chronic bronchitis and asthma years ago until I began avoiding the triggers and protecting my lungs from dust and smoke. 

The lawn service decided to come and spray next door so I came inside til they were done.  Don’t like the fact of overspray on a windy day, but as someone who is completely against chemicals, I find the idea of what they do offensive.  I believe that tolerance has it’s place but if more people don’t wake up fast, we will pass the point of no return.  Too little, too late cannot save the planet that will be taking us with it when it goes.  If you have children or grandchildren or care about what happens to life as we used to know it please see what you can do to be part of the solution.

More to come.  Also not able to add but two tags because of WordPress problems.

Green Living Hints & Tips

Most cities have mandatory recycling and every bit helps.  You can put things out to be picked up or you can reuse many things in new and unique ways.  You can also recycle by giving things away to those that may have a purpose for it, especially artists who create in mixed media.  Less landfill and sorting!  I love it when any friends or relatives contact me before they dispose of certain things.  Let people know if you have a need for something for your arts such as bottle caps, bottles, cans, etc.

GreenHintsgardenhoe

Contact your city to see if you can start a community garden if none exists in your area.  Keep in mind that you will need to be able to water during any dry spells. 

If you do not have a yard to garden, try pots or any containers, preferably outside, though I have been known to grow indoors with proper sun or grow lights.  I have recycled many containers such as gallon paint cans, washed and holes in the bottom for drainage.  You can use old tea kettles, garbage cans of any size or tubs I find at yard sales for a good price.  Just be sure you are able to make drainage holes or your plants could drown with too much rain.GreenHintsgreengarden08072011BdayFamily 002

Don’t allow smoking near your garden due to possible disease that is spread to tomatoes and other plants.  Smoking sucks anyway you look at it.  Very irritating and aging to the body and a waste of money. 

GreenHintsgrayscaleconecolorizedOne

Previous Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: