There are lots of things happening around the garden these days. First of all, the butterflies, bees, and birds are flitting and flying about, and I couldn't be happier. The migrating birds that frequent our yard and feeders this time of year are amazing...purple finches, rose breasted grosbeaks, goldfinches, and eastern phoebes always capture our attention, and combined with the regular birds in our yard, chickadees, red breasted nuthatches, white breasted nuthatches, cardinals, blue jays, chipping sparrows, robins, and woodpeckers, we have quite the bird life to watch. The robins are busy building nests, and the eastern phoebe is already sitting on eggs. We are often found standing still in the yard, just watching as they fly around. And the butterflies, I am not sure I remember this many so early in the season before, but we are enjoying them, and Reece has fun trying to catch them. The bees I noticed for the first time on Monday while I was harvesting dandelions to infuse in oil for salves. For every flower I picked, I left two for the bees.
Second, one of three gardens is fenced in, and it looks amazing! One of the things I love most about my relationship with Justin is that he can see my vision, and then create it. I described what I wanted for the fencing, and a few days later he brought it all to fruition. And I love it! Next up, lining all the pathways between the beds with cardboard, and shoveling in layer upon layer of gravel. And while I do that, Justin will be busy fencing in the other two gardens.
Third, the chicken coop renovation is complete, and our new chicks will be moving into their new home soon. We were resourceful with this project, using up pretty much every bit of scrap wood, most of it from old barns, laying around our property. The only things we had to buy were screws and hinges. It still has to be painted to match the original coop, which I will get to once things slow down a little in the garden. There is a wall separating the two spaces at the moment. Our plan is to leave them separate for now, and then in another month or two, open up the space so all 17 hens share the same space. Speaking of the new chicks, they are amazing. Growing fast, changing colour, and keeping us all entertained.
Fourth, I have been planting a little every day. This year, I have really spread out the planting, doing a lot more succession planting then I have done in the past, and also a lot more companion planting. It means I am in the garden every day, planting a few seeds here and a few seeds there, and watching as the seeds planted a few weeks ago begin to sprout from the earth. The only problem I have run into is not paying careful enough attention to my garden notes, and sowing some peas in the same place I sowed them the week before. Oh well, I will thin as they all come up.
Two weeks ago, I spent a day planting berries and asparagus. Four raspberry bushes, three blueberry bushes, one blackberry bush, twenty five strawberry plants, and eighteen asparagus crowns, all went into the ground. It was a long day, but so worth it.
Trellises have gone up, and been stringed for both peas and pole beans, bush beans have gone in the ground, more beets, kale and Swiss chard as well. The first cucumber seeds went in the ground, and some calendula and marigolds where transplanted from the tunnels to the garden. A few sunflowers that were started in the tunnels have been transplanted as well, and some more seeded in the garden. I planted 96 bulbs of garlic in the fall, and all but one is sprouting and reaching for the sky. The soaker hoses have been laid out in the back garden, and this week I will get them laid out in the front garden.
Yesterday, we made our annual trip Richter's Herb Farm to pick up our herbs. We have, for the last few years, made this trip on our anniversary, and this year was no different. We celebrated twenty years of marriage yesterday picking out our herbs, and then enjoying lunch at a little cafe. Back at home, we all spent time in the garden, me planting, Justin working on a gate, and Reece playing, and swinging on the hammock. It might not be the way everyone wants to spend their anniversary, but for us, it was just perfect.
And last, but certainly not least, we had our first official harvest from the garden on Tuesday. I am sure many of you can appreciate how wonderful that first harvest is. It wasn't much, some nettle leaves, and a mixture of baby greens...kale, Swiss chard, spinach, salad mix, and romaine, but goodness it was so good, and paired with some eggs from our hens, it was also the first official meal from the backyard.
This gardening season is off to a great start, and I am so looking forward to watching my garden grow this summer.
How are things around your garden?
You have been very busy and I know all of your hard work is going to pay off! There is nothing better than meals from your own garden. I plan on spending a lot of time in the garden this weekend. I still have some seeds to sow and there's lots of weeding that needs to be done. Good thing I enjoy that sort of thing... ;-)ReplyDelete
Yes, we have been, but in a good way :) Enjoy your time in the garden this weekend Anke.Delete
Your garden looks great! I will live vicariously through you and your gardening skills.ReplyDelete
Also, not sure if my comment went through on your last post. Seems I wasn't signed in when I thought I was. Your photography is always so beautiful. What kind of camera are you using?ReplyDelete
I don't think it did, no worries :) Thank you, that is so nice of you to say. I use a Nikon D3200.Delete
Ah ok. I'm trying to save money to purchase a DSLR as a Christmas gift to myself.Delete
Thanks for sharing!
Good luck with the saving. I saved for a long time to get my Nikon, and don't regret it one bit.Delete
The fencing looks great - have you put it up for a reason?, do you get deer coming over for midnight feasts? don' t recall you ever mentioning bear's - do you get them?ReplyDelete
Those chicks are so cute, you will be getting so many eggs later on!!! I'm always amazed at how many we go through a week, we could do with expanding our flock but Richard thinks the coop is too small.
Do you just cover you garlic with straw for the winter?
Our garden is looking more like a disaster area than ever before....I'm enthusiastic and discouraged at the same time - if that's possible!! My f.i.l has such a hard to follow eratic way of working....it's quite exhausing, all the plan's are there - in his head, nothing down on paper - ever!!!! but it always works out in the end.
Happy Wedding Anniversary - sounds like you all had a wonderful day!
Sorry about all the gardening questions.....but you just do this gardening gig better than any one I know!
We had nettle's in our smoothies this morning!!
Thanks Emma. Main reason is to keep the chickens out. We like to let them free range in the yard, but they somehow always seem to find my veggie beds. This is doing the trick perfectly.Delete
They are adorable, and we are loving them so much. Even the older hens stopped by the little outdoor run we set up for the chicks to check them out. Ours was definitely too small, hence the coop renovation.
Yes, plant the bulbs in the fall, and cover with a good layer of straw. In the spring they pop up through the ground and eventually the straw.
Oh no! I can totally relate, I'm not sure I could handle that. I need to know what is happening, as well and when and how :) I am sure it will all work out.
No problem on the questions, always happy to answer them. That is so sweet of you to say, thank you!
Yay for nettles, we just enjoyed a leek, potato and nettle soup of dinner, so good!
Thanks for the anniversary wishes, we had the most wonderful day!
I just came in from weeding the herb bed, sat down with a glass of cold water and saw your beautiful post. I love eating completely from my land, not only does it taste good, there is that feeling of such accomplishment [really helps me with it's 100 degrees outside and I have things to pick].ReplyDelete
Congratulations on your first, and certainly not last, harvest.
I love that you leave dandelions for the bees, I do too. :)
Awe, thank you Tracey.Delete
That feeling of accomplishment is one of the greatest feelings in the world. I am not sure I can handle gardening in your extreme heat, but I guess we all get used to our own environments, right?
Thank you, we harvested again today, and there are plans for more harvests this weekend. The season is in full swing.
Oh, and I forgot to say Happy Anniversary, I love how you celebrated, it sounds perfect to me!ReplyDelete
Thank you! xoDelete
It all looks so green and lush and beautiful!ReplyDelete
That fence is stunning! Well done Justin! :) Things are looking so wonderful around your garden. I'm sure it will be full to bursting soon.ReplyDelete
Thanks KC! He has done an amazing job, and I am so pleased. Now to get the other two fences done and move all the gravel in.Delete
Things are moving along so nicely in the garden, we are harvesting much earlier than last year thanks to the tunnels and cold frame. So happy we went ahead and put those in last fall.
First, I will answer your question....bunnies have been eating out broccoli plants! There is barely anything left of them. Does the fencing help that? I think one might be in order for us. Your gardens are so lovely, Kim! All of your hard work is paying off. I like how the chicken coop turned out. Such sweet little chicks! Happy Anniversary to you! I am glad you enjoyed the special day doing what you both love :)ReplyDelete
Oh no! Bunnies are cute and all, but not so when they are eating your food. Yes, fencing will help keep them out, you just need to make sure there is no where they can sneak in.Delete
Thank you. It is funny to call it hard work, it really doesn't feel that way. Honestly, it is a joy to be in the garden, to have my hands in the earth, planting and growing food that sustains us. I truly enjoy it.
I am pleased with the chicken coop, it was definitely a bit tricky trying to use up the scrap wood so we didn't have to buy any. Justin was very creative, and we are both so pleased.
Thank you! xo
Garden's looking amazing Kim. Love the new fencing- well done clever hubby! It's looking so healthy already.ReplyDelete
Thank you! Yes, clever indeed, now two more fences to go. Yes, let's hope it stays that way. Fingers crossed.Delete
Looking great !!!! I love the look of your fence (was that yours or Justin's design?) Have a wonderful weekend Kim xoxoReplyDelete
Thanks Erica! It was a little bit of both of us. I told him what I was looking for, and then he took that and created what you see. We are a good team :)Delete
You too my friend. xo
Oh, goodness--I love this! What a beautiful garden--love the gate and fence, and those chicks! Happy times at your place, I'm sure!ReplyDelete
Thank you Mia! Very happy times here, and we are soaking it all up.Delete
Looking good! We only just got ours planted and going very small this year.ReplyDelete
Thanks Jen! Hey, at least you planted, size doesn't matter, just growing a few things to eat is wonderful!Delete
It looks amazing - and huge!! I love the new fencing, it's beautiful as well as practical and hopefully it will keep the bunnies out of the harvest!ReplyDelete
Wow Kim. It's all looking great. It must be good to be out in the garden again. Enjoy xoReplyDelete
Thanks Julie. And yes, it feels so good. I am loving every minute of it. Hope you are well. xoDelete
It looks so organised and full of life, how wonderful to be harvesting already. And congratulations on 20 years, it sounds a lovely way to celebrate to me.ReplyDelete
Full of life...yes!!! I can't get enough of the garden Sally, I walk around looking at it and just smile. It feels so good to be out there again.Delete
Thank you, we had a wonderful day, and are looking forward to the next 20 years :)
Hope you are having a great weekend Sally. xo
Wow your garden looks amazing, you are so far ahead of us now with your greenery. I have sown so many seeds but I think we won't be in for a good year this year. It is just so cold we are still wearing winter coats, thermals and hats outside and lighting fires in the evening! We had two frosts this past week :(. Seven years ago we had a cold summer so I think it has come round again. The temperature hovered around 11-12°C that year with the odd warmer day and lots of cooler ones. There are many trees that don't have leaves on yet in our village too. I think I will have to alter my gardening plans for this year and try and grow as much as possible in the polytunnel and hope that works!ReplyDelete
Your anniversary sounds wonderful, what a lovely way to celebrate, congratulations on twenty years :)
Thank you, I am really pleased with the progress so far. I even managed to gather enough greens to serve a salad for our guests at lunch today. So exciting!Delete
That is too bad, I do hope it warms up for you, but if not those tunnels should work perfectly. I will send some sunshine your way.
Thank you, it was a lovely day, and I am still in disbelief that it has been twenty years...crazy!
Your gardens as always bring a smile to my face. The fences are lovely (deer problems?). Your harvest sounds yummy. I think my battle with city hall for backyard chickens has come to an end for now. It turns out Panda is allergic to eggs :( be well.ReplyDelete
I am happy they bring a smile to your face my friend. Thanks, no deer problems, but the chickens like to scratch in the garden, and the dog likes to dig...but no more!!!! I have won this battle :)Delete
Oh no, that is too bad.
Just gorgeous! Everything looks incredible my friend and I long for the days that our gardening skills are as good as yours! You sure do have quite the green thumb!ReplyDelete
Reece's garden sounds incredible too. Grace and Emma have plans for a plot of their own. We have yet to get things in the ground as we had a frost warning as late as last week! Hopefully we can get the soil prepared this weekend and seedlings in by the last weekend of May!
I absolutely adore your garden gate! I must show Dave as we really are in need of a better fence/gate, though really it's the fence that's in need of improving as the gate really is fine.
Your gardens and yard are truly enchanting!
Thanks Shel, you are much too kind. It is just years of practice, and lots of wonderful people along my path who have shared their wisdom.Delete
I will have to do a post on his garden soon. He loves having it, and enjoys growing a few things he loves to eat.
We had a frost warming last week too, and we have one coming up in a few days, although I am hoping that changes. I was going to put tomatoes in the ground today, but will wait til the weekend now.
Thanks again, my friend, one day you need to see them in person :)
Wow looking awesome! I love spring gardens - there is something so orderly and exciting about themReplyDelete
Thanks Aimee. It is an exciting time, and I am so happy to be out there every day doing something in the garden.Delete
I've been so behind on blog reading, I apologize. Everything looks so good in your area. We are barely seeing the start of seedlings here and they are announcing the risk of frost tonight. Yikes! The garden gate is amazing. My hubby and I had been looking a doing something similar. My hubby might have to pick your hubby's brains this summer. :-)ReplyDelete
For us, the fruit trees are much more inspiring than the veggies these days. But I also have dandelion and plantain infusing and we have been harvesting asparagus every day. They have been little handfuls of delight. We'll be planting a second batch of radishes this week-end as the first seeds have already started putting out true leaves and our peas are on the verge of starting to climb. I know we will get there! :-)
Happy gardening dear Kim.
No worries Yanic, life happens, and blogs can wait :)Delete
Thanks, things are doing well. That frost you speak of is hitting us this evening too. I have been keeping an eye on the forecast since last weekend, and have held off planting the tomatoes. Looking forward to doing it this weekend, once we get over this hump.
I am so pleased with the fencing and gates. Justin finished the front garden today, just one more to go. The gravel is being delivered early next week, and then we start moving that onto the paths. I can't wait to see it all come together. And yes, Jason can pick Justin's brain when you guys are here :)
Yay for asparagus, we will have some next year, I hope. Dandelion and plantain infusing here too, and today we made dandelion jelly, and lilac jelly...so good!
Enjoy your time in the garden Yanic, and stay warm this evening. xo
oh my goodness! your space is absolutely gorgeous!!!!! i can't wait to watch it evolve through the season... SO lovely already. that fence is wonderful!ReplyDelete
Thanks Jenny. I can't wait to see it too, every year is different :) I can't tell you how pleased I am with the fences around the garden, I love them so much!Delete
everything looks wonderful, Kim!ReplyDelete
and look at those sweet babies!! peep, peep!
Thanks Amanda. It is coming along. So pleased with our season extenders, we are harvesting daily from the garden already, which is early for us.Delete
Those sweet babies are huge now, and have lost all their baby feathers. They are in that kinda ugly in between stage right now :)