2014 Garden Journal
We had 16 inches of snow with an avalanche of seed catalogues. The new year is going well, shoveling snow for days. It is going down to 15 below this week but hey the house plants are doing well. The lemon trees have dropped the leaves they going to drop and now new shoots are starting to appear..The poinsettia has recovered but just green for now. The giant sequoia I bought is growing in the house and shipped just as we hit an early ground freeze, so I will plant it in the spring.
The Year has started as the 5th snowiest winter with 16 inches of snow on the ground. The seed catalogues have helped a little in coping with this winter and I have a tendency to order more seeds and plants as the winter drags on. The coldest winter since 1978 and the snow is is getting old .
My wife got me seeds for Valentine's Day . This is helping me get through this winter. She got all purple vegetables so this garden will have a Purple Theme, my wife's favorite color.
In 2013 we had a bumper crop of peaches, pears, and tomatoes and we have enough to make it until we have fresh from the trees and tomatoes from the vine. So we have also canned plums, fruit cocktail and froze cherries gooseberries blackberries raspberries .
We have been using our canned fruits and vegees all winter long and the salsa came out really well . The pears and peaches and fruit cocktail came out very good especially with the organic honey we used from a bee keeper.The peppers I canned go on pizzas and in salsa. I use the canned tomatoes for pizzas and we did enchiladas. My wife did her great spaghetti with the tomatoes . The canned pickled beets make a meal. We also still have onions, parsnips, and garlic.
It is a good time to do a little pruning of the trees. The Blue Spruce we planted Christmas day looks like it is doing OK
The weather is starting to be break , the there is still 12 inches of snow but 50 degrees tomorrow but snow Wednesday.
The Spring is still no where in site, we still have snow on the ground yet and is likely to snow tonite . We have ordered and received our seeds we have our potatoes starts and we purchased a festival tent and a 30 foot by 30 foot piece of plastic and we will use it as a green house to warm up the ground and also get a good start on tomatoes and corn and then remove after hot days set in and put it back in the fall to extend the season. The last of the parsnips where used in St Patrick's day dinner Corned beef and cabbage. They are a good replacement for carrots. We still have plenty of our canned tomatoes, peppers, salsa, pickled beets and fruit like peaches, pears and fruit cocktail. We still have frozen raspberries black berries, cherries, goose berries, pumpkin and black raspberries. I did some more pruning on a couple of the trees and raked the front yard where there was no snow left just to get out there . There is a little swelling of the buds on the fruit trees but no real sign of life. unlike two years ago when we had a real early spring where most of the fruit trees had bloomed except apple and cranberry. That year we already had 3 -80 degree days. This is just the opposite nothing yet.
April 2 nd
We are streaming live Have Compost Will Garden the front yard and the back yard and will point the camera as the yard comes into bloom. The snow is gone finally but Spring is not really here yet. we had a couple of nice days and I bought this piece of plastic 30 ft by 30 ft to use as to raise the temp of the soil in the spring and put a better start on the tomatoes, peppers, squash, pumpkins and corn and extend the fall growing season in the fall. I will put up 4 ft props at each corner of the garden and one in the center. and the plastic will come off by June. The props will stay as climbing supports during the summer. Today I bought Purple Pansies to keep my wife's tradition of Purple Pansies first to be planted. They look pretty good since grass is still brown. I also bought all the cold weather plant starts cabbage , broccoli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, kalirabi, and four types of lettuce. They are by the house on the south side getting acclimated to the spring . The soil is barely thawed out so it may be a week or two before they go into the garden. The Spring is still behind, there is no sign of any blossoms on the fruit trees. By this time the plum trees would be blooming. The Blue Spruce we planted on Christmas Day is showing signs of bud enlargement. There is little signs of Spring except the birds nesting in the area are fearless. It was a rough winter we probably lost some plants or trees. I raked the front yard and part of the back yard.
The day is a beautiful day going up to almost seventy , the ground is warm enough and has dried enough to rototill the area for all the cold weather veggies. The plastic cover really warmed up and dried out the soil. so I could till the ground just enough to break up the the soil. I planted the onions , potatoes, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, kalirabi, turnips , rutabagas, spinach, beans, parsnips and 4 types of lettuce. It is supposed to rain this weekend so the little water i give them will keep them till this weekend. The fruit trees are still at just showing signs of the buds enlarging, they will probably all bloom at the same time really late except the apple tree.
It rained this morning so I planted the seeds of the tomatoes seeds I saved last fall and the"Blue tomatoes" that I ordered in growing trays. I will put them on the south side of the house where the temp is always much warmer and will get them started fast.
It rained on and off all day so the live stream gardening class will have to started a week later. Today the grass turned green and the Robins are catching allot of worms , we have two sets of Robins this year also sparrows. so far.the pond got afresh infusion of water and the goldfish seemed to be more active. We direct most the rain water off the roof to the gold fish pond and when it fills up the run off waters fruit trees taking organic matter from the fish .We pulled the plastic cover over the garden because the temp is going down this week 30 at night with snow flurries.The evergreens have responded and are greening up fast , The sequoias all turned brown and we won't know how many died until late May. The first real sign of Spring tulips and daffodils are poking through.
This is my wife having fun on our one inch snow fall, it was very pretty out but with the cold weather plants covered by the plastic, the plants will be fine. The rest of the week will be more normal temps.
Just funny note, the tree stump that I had a wine barrel planted with Pansies fell over this morning , my wife actually heard it as she was getting the car out of the garage. As she put if a tree stump falls in the forest , it does make a sound.
The day is warm and sunny Bought a couple Cherokee Purple tomatoes plants and put them in pots .Big fun I brought out the two Lemon trees from in the computer room where they spent the winter. The buds are starting to swell more. The daffodils are coming up and the goose berries are showing their blossoms. The grass is green and the evergreens are showing signs of swelling buds. The week is supposed to be warmer , good news.
It was a nice day 60 and sunny, I bought a couple of black krimm tomatoes plants and potted them up. I took the plastic off the garden and everything I planted is growing including the beans so the plastic definitely speeds up the growing time line because in general the beans would not pop up until mid May with warmer ground. The potatoes have not broke ground yet though. The night is bringing a frost so the plastic will go back on to keep the ground warm and plants safe. The birds are really vocal, the live streaming you can hear them as early 4 am. The Goldfish are doing fine.
Ever thing including the potatoes are up and growing, I bought a bunch of large tomato plants ones that are basic boring just for hamburgers slices (beef steak mortgage saver etc) plus some pepper plants like banana peppers reg. and hot and jeolpenos and planted them .Beautiful day to do this and then recover the garden with the plastic. It will keep them growing even in these cooler days because on a sunny day it will bring it up above 70 all day in these spring days. The ground is still too cool for corn and pumpkins watermelon and gourds
It was a cool day, but sunny so the garden is doing well under the plastic. It is supposed to rain all week , but the buds for the plum trees , almost a month late , are starting to really swell up usually the first to bloom but race to bloom first may be the Kieffer pear. The weeping crabapple is close and the peach trees are swelling . The peony is poking out of the ground. The garden bed in the front yard by the house is the colorful veggie bed disguised in purple.
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