Saturday, May 31, 2014

Spring finally has sprung...

We went on a week long family tour.  It was good to see everyone.  I was very envious of how nice it was in the rest of South Dakota and Minnesota.  Luckily, when we returned it was green.  The flowers were blooming. We even got to mow the lawn for the first time this year.

It was worth the wait.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

I believe spring is finally here...

Finally, spring has arrived.  I took full advantage of it, in case it snows again.  I promised to post about the orchard.  Thankfully, everything seems to have survived.  Though the shrubs suffered some broken branches, they also managed to keep a majority of them in tact.   Some of my newer apple trees had to be pruned almost in half, but they should survive. 
 I got two pears from the county extension agency.  One is a Patten and one is Parker.  It is a bit of an experiment, since I've never heard of pears at this altitude.  My partner helped me perfectly place the pair.
The beekeeper stopped by.  I knew I had lost a hive.  He plans on bringing me a new one latter this summer.  The other hive is thriving.  In fact they made planting my pears a bit difficult.
After tackling the orchard, I turned to the gardens.  I planted peas, carrots, lettuce, spinach, dill, cucumbers, eggplant, and pumpkins.  I also tried my raised potato cage again.
 These aren't very good photos of the raspberry and strawberry beds.  I made a huge mistake and put wild raspberries in the with ones I got from my neighbor.  They took over the bed and had very few berries to show for it.  I tore the bed apart, added compost, and ash.  Then tossed anything that looked like a wild raspberry.  There were very few strawberries left, so I moved them over there also.  I am going to try cut flowers in the the strawberry bed.  It should be an interesting endeavor.  The drain pipe in the middle has a bowl in it.  I add fruit and other things for the butterflies and bees.
We will see what the weather brings.  We might have a snow or two left, but I feel spring is here, so I changed the tiles on our sign. 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Getting in the Greenhouse

I was lucky enough to get into the greenhouse this weekend.  Of course my trusty sidekick guarded the door against spinach thieves (Don't be fooled, she is the spinach thief).  Despite the surrounding snow it was quite balmy inside.

I planted the spinach and lettuce late last fall.  I was curious to see how early the seeds would germinate.  They did great and I have to say the baby spinach is delicious.  I have planted lettuce and spinach earlier in the fall with random luck.  If it is up when winter hits, I've had both success and failure.  

I also transplanted my tiny tomatoes, broccoli, peppers, and one giant pumpkin.  I surrounded the giant pumpkin with sunflower seeds.  The goal is to have the sunflowers go out the top of the greenhouse and provide an avenue for the giant pumpkin.  Hopefully, this will help with the problem of an early hail out.  I also bit the bullet and thinned the chamomile.  Which is prolific as always.
In a wink the greenhouse was planted.  It is still too early for the outside beds.  I do see last years leeks, garlic, rhubarb, and my asparagus is peeking up.  This will be the year to harvest the asparagus.  A long time coming since I started it from seed.
Next week I will unveil the orchard, as a majority has melted.  Of course that will depend on how much snow we get from tomorrows storm.   Don't worry Ella, sooner or later I will be out there gardening with you.  

How does your gardens grow?  Are you laughing that I am just getting my seeds in?  Do  you have any major garden goals?  What is your specialty?  I am anxious to hear.