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Garden Journal - May 17, 2016

Garden Journal - May 17, 2016

Mystery Solved....Squirrels

Well, it seems the general consensus is that squirrels are to blame for digging holes in my soil and tossing my seedlings around like a bad juggling act. They really are annoying. I sprinkle cayenne pepper in the garden around the plants now to try to keep them away. (They don't like their plants spicy hot.) But I'll need to keep doing that....Fencing a bunch of containers isn't much of an option either. One person told me she sets up motion-sensor sprinklers to scare them away and it works. If I had a water source back there, that would be an option, but it's not. I'm hoping that once everything is trellised or surrounded by supports and the plants get bigger, they'll move on. (Until there's more for them to eat, that is.) Stupid squirrels.

This week, I added many of my supports for tomatoes, eggplant and have some trellises on order for some of the other things in the beds. Best to get those in as soon as possible. The roots are growing under the soil and putting in supports later risks damaging those roots. 

Potatoes - I'd tell you what kind they are, but I neglected to label them. Learn from my mistakes....

Potatoes - I'd tell you what kind they are, but I neglected to label them. Learn from my mistakes....

Sunflowers

Sunflowers

Yellow Squash

Yellow Squash

What's Popping Up

Aside from what the squirrels have ruined, things are coming along. Here's what's sprouting from what I planted by direct sowing outdoors:

  • Sunflowers & Marigolds
  • Potatoes are getting green sprouts
  • Peas 
  • Parsnips & Carrots
  • Swiss Chard

Garden Repair

A bit of repair work was needed on the corners of the boxes. With all the rain we had in the past few weeks, the corners started to separate and I haven't been able to get out there to fix them until now. I used the corner brackets that I talked about in an earlier post. And....I treated myself to a power screwdriver!! Power tools... Woo Hoo! I didn't get the top of the line one, but it did the trick and made it much easier to get the job done.....with a lot less cursing out in the garden, which is always a plus.

Secure corners with corner brackets

Secure corners with corner brackets

The Gift of Gardening, Family and Garden Decor

I was also fortunate to have some new additions to the garden. These aren't things that grew from the ground, but from the heart and family. As my Mom is getting ready to move from the home she and my Dad retired to in upstate NY, I took some of the garden "decor" that was my Dad's and was still out there in their yard. I acquired a sundial, a frog and a rabbit (see below). (Maybe they'll scare the squirrels?) They're pretty "whimsical." When Dad was alive, he was an avid gardener and built and nurtured an amazing backyard garden. He spent hours and hours out there. He grew flowers and flowering trees/shrubs, not veggies, but his example influenced me greatly. I don't know if I even realized it at the time - I admired what he did, but didn't see myself in it. But, I saw the enjoyment he got from gardening and now it's something that I'm lucky enough to experience. I'm truly grateful for that influence.

For those of you with kids, if you need a reason to take some time out to garden, having a positive influence on your kids and how they view nature and their place in it should be a good motivator. 
Frog playing a string instrument - was my Dad's

Frog playing a string instrument - was my Dad's

Another garden ornament from my Dad's garden - guarding my blueberries and strawberries

Another garden ornament from my Dad's garden - guarding my blueberries and strawberries

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Pine Needle Mulch for Blueberries

Pine Needle Mulch for Blueberries

Garden Journal - May 11, 2016

Garden Journal - May 11, 2016