Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Gardeners Take Your Mark!

There have been a few days above freezing here in metro Detroit so we Michiganders are running around in wind breakers and firing up our barbecues. Mac went to play wally ball wearing shorts and I didn't say a word, it was 48 degrees for goodness sake!

Looking out my window into my muddy snowy back yard I imagine the trees budding with green leaves and my gramma's dead dogwood blooming again. When you live around here, you approach Spring like a runner in a marathon...in February you take your stance waiting for the shot to fire so you can spring at full speed and take advantage of every moment!

I brought my plants in for the winter and the two ferns I took to my office have kind of turned into pot pourri in that they are dried out. I ignore them for weeks on end and this is what they do, stupid high maintenance ferns! The plants I brought in to the house are faring better. I will be putting my little pine tree seedlings into the ground come the thaw, probably along the front fence line on the south side of the driveway. The plants I brought home from my Grandma's funeral will need to be repotted because they are out growing their dishes. The ivy Jay brought from work for me to rehab is apparently never going back so I've adopted it. Then there's the window box that I used for my first experiment with herbs. I planted cilantro, dill, mint and lemon something or other. The cilantro and dill were pretty frail, I planted seeds late into the summer. The mint and lemon thing did well since I planted actual plants. But I'm thinking that I want different herbs this year and I know I want an actual herb garden. I did put parsley in the ground outside and it was my favorite. Every evening I'd grab a hand full to add to our salad and it was wonderful! I went to K Mart to buy some seeds but there are none in yet, when do they start stocking garden stuff?

One of the doctors at work brought in a cutting from a citronella plant for someone else to root in water. It smelled amazing! I never actually realized that was a real thing, I thought it was some kind of chemical in insect repellent! I am definitely going to plant some citronella. That will have to be in a pot so I can bring it in and enjoy the scent. Outside will be parsley, dill, cilantro, basil, mint and ?

Of course I'm also planning a vegetable garden. Last year it was on the fly, stuck in around a utility pole and with no forethought and certainly not on any time table. I kept cramming more seeds and plants into the ground until I couldn't remember what was where and it was way too late for watermelons to grow! My grande pumpkins never pumpkinated although they had lovely giant blossoms. Disappointing to be sure. And my beloved sunflowers? The Mr. week whacked them. I can't talk about that right now.

My dad built raised planters around the border of his yard, I would like to do that I think. I have a little spot between our deck and the neighbor's fence that would serve my purpose nicely and there is a water spigot right there saving me the daily hauling of 40 feet of hose to the garden. I'm imagining a horseshoe shape and this year I'm going to be ahead of the game in May when everyone else is planting their gardens so I have an actual harvest! The herb garden will be included in these raised beds I think. Perhaps sunflowers along the neighbor's fence? Maybe if they are in a raised bed the Mr. will not weed whack them. I can't talk about that right now.

This year I'll splurge on a few perennials and of course, the petunias will hang around the deck again. The pond will be reattempted and hopefully a more mature Donny will stop trying to rescue the plants by throwing them onto dry land.

I think a few rose bushes will go into the south east corner of the property line where the old shrubs need to be replaced. And a lilac bush somewhere as well, maybe two.

Of course the grape vines will fill the arbor again thanks to my cousin Tom who lovingly pruned them for us when my gramma died.

Yep, Spring is coming. The clearance sweaters and fabulous boot sales don't tempt me, I'm saving my money for seeds and flowers. Boy, I must be getting old.

Because sitting here looking at the muddy snow and bare trees soaking in the 38 degree morning, I can't imagine a better investment.

Pic: Southeast corner of the back yard when I'm considering rose bushes (will have to check about light/shade.) On the front yard side of the fence to the right of the existing shrubs I'm planning on planting my pine seedlings.


Margie said...

I know! I'm excited too! I have my compost pile from last year started! Planning on getting dirt delivered in the spring, cutting down a tree that blocks the sun in my back yard so I can plant more veggeis! This year I think it will be the craziest veggie garden you've ever seen because I am going to have to make it work with my crazy backyard configuration!
Celery, zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers, parsely, cilantro, basil...

can't wait!!

Constance said...

Your poor sunflowers, it's apparent that you haven't grieved them and moved on yet! Ha Ha!

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Rosemary! In fact, I grilled salmon last night for dinner and then I always garnish it with some fresh Rosemary I snip off! It's one of my favorite 'erbs. Tee Hee!

We are already have buds on the trees and the daffodils down the street are blooming their fool heads off! I have yet to get the "itch" to get out and do some serious work in the yard, whipping it into shape. Since I still work and am busy, the idea of a nice yard DOES appeal to me but not the work! You have to realize that down here,you don't work out in the yard comfortably! It's already 90 degrees by 9AM! BLECH! (And people wonder why I want to move to Montana!)

When we lived in Nebraska I had a wonderful vegetable garden! I loved going out and picking corn, okra and lettuce or cucumbers and tomatoes to slice up for dinner. I canned green beans, pumpkin, tomatoes, you name it. It's funny, I had LESS time back then because the kids were little! Maybe when I retire and I live in a more suitable temperature zone, I will once again enjoy working in the yard and my garden. In the meantime, my canning equipment is collecting dust! Ha Ha!

Trish said...

I have been dreaming of our garden for weeks. Everytime i go to Trentwood Farms and look at all of their gorgeous variety of fresh flowers...i start my yearning...

Pat said...

Will you please take care of my garden while I'm at the cottage?
thank you in advance

Jada's Gigi said...

things do grow well in Michigan. Careful of planting mint outside, it takes over. and my mom keeps stepping on my butterfly bushes in winter and breaking them off...and that's what I can't talk about right now.
We also have trees blooming and daffodils too...spring starts early in GA...and TX apparently. :)

Mrs. Mac said...

We hit 45 F yesterday (Yahoo). The citronella plant is probably a scented geranium plant ... I have one hibernating down in the basement just aching to be pulled out from under the house for spring planting. Your raised garden bed will add so much to your yard. Enjoy spring. 48 ... a short pants type of day indeed.

tina fabulous said...

well you defintely need to plant some corn. because its high and hides you from stalkers. (get it? stalkers. ha) then in the summer when its a million degrees, it will heat up and start popping. which is perfect for movie nite, of course. when the crows start coming around, and believe me they will, you can put up a scarecrow. he can wear a fabulous belt and capris. then when the pumpkins see him, they'll be like "hey, i know that guy!", giving them the much needed confidence to pumpkinate.
you can now make pie. i will eat the pie.
the end.

Deb said...

Tina is too funny and needs to comment more often. the end.

no...not the end...we had many pumpkinated pumpkins last year ...and the year before that ...and the year before that.