Before & After, DIY, Garden

Down & Dirty

IMG_1016The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and, clearly, reorganizing my shop wasn’t enough in the getting dirty department. This past week I brought in four yards of dirt to revive what once was a kitchen garden.  

It needed a little love, but after cutting down the three-foot tall weeds, laying down cardboard, layering leaves and compost, I laid down the dirt, with a little help from the manpower on the property.  What can I say, I’m not in the shape I used to be, after hauling 3.5 yards with a shovel and wheel-borrow, I was a little tuckered out and needed to call in reinforcements.

The manpower also framed in our garden gate, restructured our compost bins, and got the worm farm constructed and operational.  

While we are not quite out of the clutches of the late winter freezes, (it was 20 degrees here two nights ago), we’re looking forward to seeing the following lovelies in the sprout for eating, canning, and more: beets, basil, carrots, collards, and rainbow chard!

 

Garden, Story

Spring Is On Its Way

Spring in Texas has its ups and downs.  This year has proven to be no exception.  With 90 degree weather this past Friday to 32 degrees two nights later, there is really no way to know what to expect.  I don’t envy the weatherman’s job right about now, I’m sure he’s receiving hate mail.

The animals are all feisty with the cold weather and the poor plants don’t know what to do.  Every time the sun comes out, they jump at the chance to bloom, only to retreat the following day.  I, myself, am getting a little cabin fever.  While I love a roaring fire in our living room, I’m itching to plant seeds, prep space for the chickens, and work in my wood shop. 

In the Northeast, there were always sure-fire signs that Spring was really on the way.  While Groundhog Day was always a charming notion, however unreliable, my Father always said when the crocus and iris are in bloom, Spring is just around the corner.  

You can imagine my excitement and, admittedly, an overwhelming sense of relief to see the white iris blossoming outside our little farmhouse this past weekend.  Not only a white flag from Winter, but the solid green light and invitation from Spring to finally start prepping the beds for planting.  

Happy Spring, ya’ll!  She’s just about here!

Book of the Month, Garden

Book of the Month 2

IMG_1905  While I have been relatively quiet on the blog front, I have several projects brewing.  I have also turned into a little bit of an introvert since the last few weeks in Austin, the weather is slowly morphing into that of Seattle.  Grey, cold, and rainy.  I don’t mind the grey if it’s warmer, I don’t mind the cold if it’s sunny, but it seems like it has been an eternity since the sun has warmed my skin.  That being said, it has been perfect “curl up with a book” weather and I am glad to announce that I have completed my second book of 2015.

 

February’s Book: Grow the Good Life by Michelle Owens

My brother gave me this book a couple of years ago.  Itching for Spring and the chance to play in the dirt, I figured this little gem would be great inspiration for my next plant project.  I’ve always loved growing food and flowers.  Ten years ago worked on a small farm called Paisley’s Farm & Greenhouse.     To this day, it is still the best job I have ever had.  I never recall a day I didn’t want to get out of bed and go to work.  If I wasn’t at the Paisleys, I was bringing home the sickly looking IMG_1893plants to my dads farm to nurse them back to health. Rain or shine, I was outside, playing in the dirt, repotting perennials, etc.  What I would give to be able to have that again?!

I have always known gardening was a wonderful thing, but Owens book gave some very interesting insight as to why it is so important and why as a society we have moved away and back towards gardening. I must say I am completely envious of Owens given description of her house and her garden bursting with colors, vegetables, and greenery, especially since I live in a tiny 1 bedroom apartment that has a nonexistent balcony.  I make do with the walkway space and have a small collection of potted plants and window boxes.  Knock on wood, no one has yet to complain about my taking up of valuable walkway real estate.

That being said, today I finally breathed some life back into my little garden. The cold had done a number on a few of my fragile friends and I knew that planting some spring flowers would lift my spirits.  How could it not?  Digging in the soil, the bright colors of the blooms, and the hope for sun…

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12 Day of Crafting, Garden, Mixed Media

12 Days of Crafting: Day 6

image4Day 6: Thanks for Helping Me Grow!

I cannot believe I am half way through my 12 days of crafting. I’ve really enjoyed spending time in the kitchen, dreaming up new projects, planning my posts, and the most important part of doing these daily blogs is that they are forcing me to finish a few projects!  I am the queen of having little projects that are almost done and just need the finishing touches.  Thank you to all of you that have put up with my posts, clicked on them, even read them, or liked them.  It’s nice to know I have your support.image3

Now down to todays feature: Succulents in Mason Jars.  I love gardening.  Unfortunately, apartment living is not conducive to having beds beyond beds of billowing blooming beauties.  Despite my green thumb, potted plants don’t always seem to cut it on my tiny balcony.  The one thing that I seem to have the most luck with here in Texas are succulents!  They seem to be resilient and able to roll with the punches of daily temperature swings, a day of missed watering, or my neighbors cat chewing on them.

image2Throw a tiny succulent in a mason jar, you’ve got yourself something pretty alright.  Throw a tiny succulent in a painted mason jar and you’ve got something pretty damn cute! It also makes the perfect gift or centerpiece.  *Hint, hint, wink, wink*

Come on by the Bluebonnet Bazaar next Saturday, December 13th from 10 AM – 3 PM and pick one up! I’m looking forward to seeing you there!