Rhododendron

Greetings from the farm! There is a lot going on right now as this is the start of the growing season-probably my favorite time of year. Our rhododendron is in full bloom and the bees are just having a party on it.

Here is a closer look on video:

 

The pollinators are hard at work.  Very important work.  What’s blooming in your garden?

Wendy

 

 

 

Garden in Spring

Hello friends!  Welcome to Springtime!  I don’t miss the snow very much.  It snowed through this month.  I HOPE it is finished.  I’m ready to garden!  I’ve already begun pruning, and we put some Northern Pecan trees, as well as a couple of more Carpathian Walnut trees in the ground.  We also added Blueberries, Black raspberries, Nanking cherries, a Butterfly bush, and some various plants to attract pollinators.  These include Comfrey, Bergamot, Yarrow, Hyssop, Russian sage, and Baptisia.

Here is a short video of an early Garden “Tour.”

I hope you are enjoying this time of year wherever you are!  Wishing you all a beautiful day.

Wendy

Wisteria

The pruning has begun!  Yes, it is winter, but according to my sources, it is the best time to begin pruning…..at least SOME plants.

If you will recall the unruly wisteria:

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I trimmed it back to a point, so it will hopefully shape up this spring.

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Soon, I will have to focus on the crazy crabapple:

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Another rear-view of the house:

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Someone was watching me…..

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Don’t worry, I took him out, too.

Have a wonderful weekend!  Start thinking about pruning if you haven’t already!

Wendy

 

Wenz Day

Finally the snow begins to melt at Country Mouse House!

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We have had one heck of a winter.  And I don’t believe it is quite finished yet.  Today, however, the sun shines.  See the rose garden in the foreground, below, and the vegetable garden in the background:

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This past weekend, Farmer Joel and I took the first module of a class in Permaculture Design.  It was offered by the Hancock Permaculture Center.   This has been a dream of mine for a few years now.  Permaculture is a Design Science, and is based on 3 Ethics:  1- Care for the Earth, 2- Care for People, and 3- Sharing the Surplus.  How wonderful!

Here is my herb garden, which will be changing as I learn more in my class:

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Do you see how it is a straight, old feeding trough?  As you know, we are renovating the house, so this herb garden will not be configured into the new design.  I will be looking to build, as per Permaculture, an Herb Spiral.  I recommend Googling the term “Herb Spiral, Image,” and take a look at the numerous ways to design and build them.  This straight 15 feet of trough can be curled, enabling not only a more efficient use of space, but a very lovely-looking garden as well.  Spiral shapes occur in nature, and nature is what Permaculture strives to mimic.

My little bed of rhubarb, asparagus, horseradish, primroses, columbines, lambs’ ears, and hosta looks about ready to awaken as well(all beside and beneath my hemlock tree):

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Upon closer inspection, I see the rhubarb just beginning to peek through:

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See the little red nubs?  Notice, also, the natural mulch created by the nearby tree.  Unbeknownst to me, I had already begun what Permaculture calls a “Guild,” by planting certain plants harmoniously which will benefit each other, as well as benefit the soil.

If you’d like to see a short (less than one minute) video of the property from a different perspective, I invite you to this link:

In our class, we met so many interesting, knowledgeable people.  One person keeps bees, and is very involved in helping others learn about them.  I have a strong interest in learning about bees.  We need to help the bees- now more than ever.  See my previous post, Yellow Flowers and Bees.

What are your plans for this Spring?  Have things begun to awaken in your natural surroundings?

Wendy

 

Happy Monday

Happy Monday!  If you are in my part of the world, I hope you are warm and cozy.

I thought I would share a bit of closet organization.  When it is this cold, inspiration strikes and I like to work on putting things in order.  I have a bit of costume jewelry and some scarves.  My new closet at our new Town Mouse residence is not nearly as big as my old one, so I have to be clever.

Farmer Joel attached some window screen to the back of an old window frame we found in the barn.  It makes a perfect earring-hanger!  I borrowed this idea from a friend, Pauline, who hand-crafts and sells her very own line of jewelry.  Her company is the “Pearls of Pauline.”  Isn’t that cute?

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See the necklaces to the left and the top of the hanger below?  Here they are a little closer:

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You can find the scarf hanger here.

Just for fun, I thought I’d include a view from my Country Mouse House kitchen window:

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When the sun shines, the chickadees come around chirping and singing.  This is a lilac bush, which a favorite nest-building spot!

Wendy

 

Finally

Well, yesterday felt a little bit like Spring, anyway.  Today, not so much.  Windy, chilly, rainy, blah blah, wah wah……

It could always be worse.

Here are some pictures of my Spring blossoms at Town Mouse House:

 RED TULIP

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 FORSYTHIA

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EASTER LILY

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PERIWINKLE(Vinca)

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I’ve decided not to grow much in the way of edibles at Town Mouse House anymore.  The houses in this suburb are stacked so closely that one person’s pesticide run-off could invade my otherwise organic efforts.  I still have a few herbs, though, and my two potted dwarf fruit trees.  I just can’t help myself!

LAVENDER

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DWARF CHERRY TREE(North Star, the apple is not blooming yet)

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(I’m hoping to get enough of a yield this year for at least one pie.  Last year I only got a small bowlful of fruit.)

SORREL

(Has a tangy, lemony flavor that is lovely in salads.  I’ve cooked it, too, with garlic as a green vegetable.)

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LEMON BALM

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A fortunate characteristic of most herbs is that wildlife doesn’t usually prefer to dine on them.  Some herbs actually repel critters, as well.   The added bonus is the fragrance, especially if planted near windows and doors.

It’s good to be back in the Blogging Realm.  We have suffered much loss this year.  My Mom and Joel’s Dad passed on within a couple of months of one another.  We feel like we haven’t been able to come up for air.  Hopefully, things will become a little less stressful.  My best therapy happens in the garden.  There is nothing like the smell and feel of the Earth to bring me out of a “Blue Funk,” as my Mother would have called it!

I’d love to hear about some of your favorite plants and garden activities!  Don’t hesitate!

Get out there and pull some weeds, dig in the dirt, and do a little planting and pruning.  You will feel better, I promise!

Wendy

Spring????

Well, at still-freezing temperatures, it isn’t looking too good for this gardener to get started.  I brought my little greenhouse into Town Mouse House, only to discover that all my seeds are in the fridge up at Country Mouse House!  Grrrrr…….

So much for being organized.

At any rate, I wanted to post something since I have not in awhile.  Things are, as many of you know, still rather all-consuming in Wenz World at this time.  As with any stressful time in life, I know “this too shall pass,” but I still need to devote much time and energy to situations at hand.

Meanwhile, the Big Gig is tomorrow night!  Led Zeppelin tribute!  After that, I am going to put my energies back into plants…..I wonder if may passion for gardening was “planted” because of the man, Robert PLANT, himself?  I know, corny, right?  Sorry for the garden puns, I just can’t help myself sometimes……

There is much to be said, though, for working in and among the earth.  ‘Tis very therapeutic.

Sorry, no pics this time.  Hopefully next week.  The crocus’ came up, but it remains to be seen what will happen next.  I think I caught a glimpse of daffodil shoots…..:)

Have a lovely day!  Even though it is freezing and windy, the sun is shining!  That is good news!

Wendy