Monday, May 30, 2016


It was only a matter of time before the roof windows in the summerhouse started to fail. First, they leaked just a little bit. Then, gradually the drip drip got worse and worse, and then...last winter a heavy branch fell smashing one pane to bits. Up until then, I had thought the glass was industrial and would shatter if broken. So it was quite a shock to see the shards of glass one morning, on the floor, absolutely everywhere. And so, their days, from that point on, were numbered.
"Sunny for three days and no rain" the forecast said. Do you know, I think the meteorologists take the weekend off because until it starts to rain, the forecast doesn't change. This wet surprize, of course, delayed everything! Quickly, plywood was nailed over the openings and a tarp over that. How I will miss those sunny bright days, looking up at the sky when potting or puttering. Doesn't it look dark inside. Maybe when the new tongue in groove is put in place and painted white....
But heh, the greens and the garden are in utter heaven! However, I didn't pay attention to my own mantra..grow only what you can eat and share. Even the succession plantings are catching up to the first plantings.  Arugula has been composted twice now because of wanting to go to seed. Thinning little Tom Thumb lettuce has helped to allow their sweet lime green heads to form and I must admit, this is my favourite lettuce. A butterhead with a nice crunch, perfect with a creamy dressing. This lot needs a little more thinning heh!
Another spectacular lettuce this year was Red Deer Tongue. It remains green at the bottom when it is intensely planted but if transplanted out properly, with space between the heads, the intensity of the red is incredible. This also makes a great ornamental.
"Lighten up, enjoy the garden and make time to relax" I tell myself. Almost June when the fairies and Gnomes arrive. For some fun, especially if you have children visit, why not plant up an old wheelbarrow, perhaps something safer than this old rusty thing. We tucked in a nasturtium, and a sign that says "Welcome to the Great Outdoors" and wouldn't you know it, a little gnome showed up just last night!! He wouldn't let me take his picture but you can just see his tiny Green hat if you look closely. Maybe he thought it was Heligan in Cornwall but no I said, there are three white spheres there, don't you know. ;-)

Oh..the rain stopped! Time to pick some supper greens..and reds. Thanks for reading.

Monday, May 9, 2016

May Gifts

Continuing with the theme of giving, and gratefulness....a man with the kindest eyes came to visit on Tuesday. We met only once before, two years ago, after he contacted me about my quince posts here on blog. Realizing he lived nearby, an invite to visit his orchard was offered; the highlight for me was to visit his quince tree!
"Would you like a quince tree I grafted" he emailed not long ago...and also, by the way, "a small Chicago Fig". Quince trees are not readily available in the nurseries near where I live, so you can imagine my delight.. utter joy upon receiving two gifts of promise. May I introduce to you dear reader, the newly grafted and newly planted Portugal quince. Ta DA
It actually had two enormous blooms when delivered but these we removed. How I hope and pray it thrives. (clear direction has been offered on making this possible) At present, because we could still have a cold night, or a visiting nibbler, there is a steel cage around it and around that we place fleece. Will there be roasted quince in my future? I hope so!
As for the's getting the in and out treatment, and will for a week or longer, until I am convinced it won't drop its leaves in the cold. But as a new fig mother, this is a learning experience. Chicago Fig, welcome to your new Canadian home.
Swollen buds are everywhere, anxious to feel the warm spring sun and rain. An Eastern Redbud species waits to be planted. Three new challenges for an old gardener like myself, wanting to TRY rather than not try.
The handsome Chestnut 'Briotii' is also about to unfurl it's leaves. Later, its red candles will glow.

"Better than Vegas" I say!!