Thurs. April 8, 2021: A Hint of Spring

image courtesy of Capri23autho via pixabay.com

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Fourth Quarter Waning Moon in Pisces

Celtic Tree Month of Alder

Cloudy and mild

There are finally signs of spring. The potted forsythia in the garage is blooming, and I’ll move it out on the deck soon. But even the in-ground forsythia are shyly starting to show yellow buds.

I love forsythia. They’re such a cheerful plant, and to me, mean spring. It makes me feel cheerful and hopeful, something I desperately need right now.

I have some daffodils in vases – not ones from the house, ones I bought. They’re lovely.

The hyacinths I planted out front about eight years ago bloomed. Another spring favorite.

We had a smattering of snow into Saturday morning. Woke up with it on the roof and the roof of the deck. Barely saw it on the ground; if I hadn’t looked out of the window early enough, I wouldn’t have seen it.

The bunnies survived the winter, living under the deck. We saw them last night, coming out for their supper. We love our bunnies. We’ve lost so much wildlife in the neighborhood, due to people cutting down their trees and overbuilding. Fewer birds, too, although a fresh robin watched me pull out of the driveway yesterday, and I can hear the mourning doves when I wake up.

We still don’t know where we will move, and I haven’t done any planting. I will be so sad if I don’t have any garden this year. The stress of not knowing where we will end up is taking a bad toll.

But I am trying to enjoy each moment still here, and I’m trying to stay optimistic that we will end up in the right place.

Thurs. March 18, 2021: Celtic Tree Month of Alder Begins

image courtesy of Petra Geistler via pixabay,com

Thursday, March 18, 2021

First Quarter Waxing Moon in Taurus

Celtic Tree Month of Alder Begins

Windy and cloudy

Alder is about release and determination. It’s a good time for hopes and dreams. Time to sow the seeds of success.

I could use that right now.

Nothing to report on the garden front. The weather’s been wacky. We’re supposed to get another snowstorm tonight. Lots of winds until tomorrow.

No planting; just taking care of the houseplants we have.

I have to start cleaning out and packing our pots soon. That will be a big task. But I’m going to wait until it’s a little warmer.

How’s your garden doing?

Thurs. Feb. 11, 2021: Real Winter Weather

image courtesy of moonzigg via pixabay.com

Thursday, February 11, 2021

New Moon in Aquarius

Mercury Retrograde

Celtic Tree Month of Rowan

Snowy and cold

I’m grateful that we have a good, solid cold snap. It will benefit the yard.

It was frustrating to try to dig out, because the plow pushed ice boulders into the bottom of my driveway that then froze down. And the Dig Safe guy showed up to mark the lines during the storm, and spray paint info on the snow. Does he not realize that it must melt before any digging can happen?

Not my problem.

I still haven’t planted either the strawberries or poppies. Tomorrow’s another planting day, and it’s waxing moon, which is good for planting that which will be above ground. So maybe I can make up for it tomorrow.

We’re having some more flurries this morning, and possibly another storm over the weekend. That’s what winter’s for, right?

I have every intention of enjoying as much of it as I can!

What’s new in your garden?

Thurs. Dec. 10, 2020: The Increase In Grime & Pollution

Image courtesy of azyrit via pixabay.com

Thursday, December 10, 2020

4th Quarter Moon in Libra

Uranus Retrograde

Cloudy and cold

Before last weekend’s storm, we cleared most of the remaining post off the deck – the pansies were still blooming, can you believe it? They’ve bloomed since May.  For the moment, we left the hanging pots, but put everything else in the garage. They’re organized into the section nearest the light for the plants overwintering that need to be watered every week or two, and the pots that are just stacked.

The decorations were cleaned and put away; most of the furniture was cleaned and put away. The big bench is still out – it will have to come up in a week or two. And the big, round table stays out all winter.

We got it done before the storm started, and it was a relief. Less to worry about.

What was disturbing was how absolutely filthy all the pieces were. Usually, once we clean off the pine pollan, there’s a little dust over the course of the summer, a smidge of dirt, but we wipe things down and it’s fine.

This year, we had to scrub. There were layers of genuine grime.

All those leaf blowers, running daily for hours and hours. All that tree cutting. All that heavy machinery the new shady neighbors run late at night after deliveries from unmarked trucks – they’re adding to pollution.

The branches used to have a lot of lichen – which indicates good air quality. No more. We even had warnings about poor air quality over the summer.

With all the construction – or, I should say DE-struction, tree cutting, pollution – our wildlife population has seriously declined. We don’t have as many squirrels. The owl hasn’t lived here for years. I don’t see Che Guevara Chipmunk and his family that often. There are no racoons, deer, skunk, coyotes. If you’ve followed my stories here and on Ink in My Coffee since we moved here, my yard was like something out of a Disney cartoon with all the wildlife, because I have the organic yard in the neighborhood.

Gone.

Even with all the pollinators I planted this year, we had very few bees. Plenty of wasps, but few bees.

I’m so disappointed. I mean, I’m disappointed in my fellow humans anyway this year, because too many of them are Covidiots, and too selfish to do something as simple as wear a mask. But the destruction of habitat is appalling.

Earthwhile reports the decline of water quality around Cape Cod. I’m sure. We’ve had numerous alerts of contaminants all year, and have had to boil water. When we moved here, this area was proud of high quality, and we didn’t even put on the Brita filter on the taps.

The Cape and Islands were earning low marks for air quality as far back as 2012, according to this article, but it’s grown exponentially worse in the last three years or so, in my personal experience.

And no one gives a damn. Oh, there are plenty who talk a good game, but when it comes to action, they allow new construction and plenty of destruction of habitat in order to turn a profit.

I have grown disappointed and disillusioned with this area. The people here would rather destroy it to make $5 today than look long term for the good of life for everyone. But then, they demonstrate that character trait daily be refusing to wear masks. It should not be a surprise at all.

It’s been bothering me for years, but this year, seeing the evidence as I put away the furniture for the season, was just crushing.

On a happier note, we’ve had two slight brushings of snow, just enough to look like someone dumped a little powdered sugar on us, not enough to shovel. Since I have surgery tomorrow, I won’t be in any shape to shovel for the next stretch.

The tree is up, and most of the decorations in the living room and the back room. I still have to decorate my office, but that won’t happen until after tomorrow’s surgery.

Solstice is coming up, a week from Monday. I’m ready to increase the light in my life, aren’t you?

Thurs. Jan. 9, 2020: Resting Garden

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image courtesy of gamagapix via pixabay.com

Thursday, January 9, 2020
2nd Quarter Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Winter finally arrived, and we have snow on the ground. The weather’s been so wacky, I’m worried the plants can’t enough rest. It’s cold, it’s warm, it’s cold, it’s warm.

It’s supposed to go up into the sixties this weekend. Which means the snow will melt, and I will rake more leaves in the back.

I’m planning my garden and growing for the coming season. I want to try lots of tomatoes again — and hope they’re not stolen. I’d like to do cucumbers and eggplants, too, but start them earlier. And plenty more pollinator flowers.

I hope, in the next week or so, to find some potted primroses in the garden center. They are always so cheerful in the winter.

The indoor plants are all doing well. The geraniums are in the sunniest window in my bedroom, and they bloom and bloom and bloom, then take a rest in the late spring until about midsummer.

What are your plans for your plants?

Thurs. Dec. 12, 2019: Weather

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image courtesy of Sonyuser via pixabay.com

Thursday, December 12, 2019
Full Moon in Gemini
Uranus Retrograde
Cold and clear

Not much to report on the garden front. The weather has been difficult for most of the week, either raining or snowing. I should have gone out to rake more leaves last Sunday, but I wrote holiday cards instead.

I figure, any dry day when the snow’s melted, I’ll do some raking. By spring, it will be done.

In the meantime, I can dream about the garden I want for next year.

In addition, I’m designing a large, complex island garden for a novel I’m writing. It’s one of my favorite parts of writing books — designing the houses and gardens!

The exterior decorations are up. However, even though I tested all the lights before I put them up and they worked, the strand of lights in the middle of each section isn’t working. So I have to replace them. Frustrating.

Hope all is well with you!

 

Thurs. Nov. 14, 2019: First Bite of Winter

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image courtesy of JillWellington via pixabay.com

Thursday, November 14, 2019
Third Quarter Waning Moon in Gemini
Celtic Tree Month of Reed
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Partly Sunny and cold

We had our first bite of winter on Tuesday night, with a dusting of snow, and plenty of sharp, cold weather.

Charlotte is fascinated by snowflakes, Willa runs away, and Tessa is used to them.

Last weekend, we worked hard to put the rest of the plants to bed for the winter. I did some of the pruning (not enough). I have much more pruning to do this weekend. We cut down/pulled out the annuals and put the pots away. We brought in the remaining pots that will spend the winter in the house, rather than in the garage. I oiled the teak furniture before putting it away. The large teak bench went upstairs to live at the bottom of my mom’s bed. Brought the large geraniums in — they live near the very sunny window in my bedroom all winter, and usually bloom and bloom and bloom. Cleaned the decorations and brought them in.

I will have a lot of repainting to do in the spring.

So far, 10 30-gallon bags have gone to the dump. 6 more are waiting, and we’re still working on the front. If the weather holds, there is a great deal of raking, bagging, and driving to the dump over the weekend.

I will have to get my act together to start the seeds earlier in February next year. I started too much too late, because certain seeds don’t like to be moved, and I wanted to plant them on the deck in their mature pots. I’m going to have to find the room to do that inside this year. Not sure how, especially since the cart where we usually start seedlings in the front window of my office has been converted to a perch for Willa.

I have a few months to think about it. But I don’t want to wait until the last minute.

Have you finished everything that needs to be done in your yard for winter?

Thurs. Nov. 7, 2019: Beating the Storm

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image via FreePhotos by pixabay.com

Thursday, November 7, 2019
Waxing Moon 2nd Quarter in Pisces
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Partly sunny and cold
Celtic Tree Month of Reed

We might get our first snowflakes tomorrow morning.

On Tuesday, we raked enough just from the center front lawn to fill 10 30-gallon bags. In other words, 3000 gallons of leaves. We’re taking it to the dump today.

The front lawn is full of leaves again.

We haven’t had the chance to do the side lawn or anything in the back.

We’re taking in the plants that need to overwinter in the garage (the potted lilac, the roses of Sharon, the forsythia, hydrangea, etc. in the big pots. We’ll take in the geraniums that usually overwinter in my bedroom, because there’s a window that gets good sunlight. And the fern.

Not sure what we’ll do with the tomatoes.

Other pots have to be dumped, cleaned, sterilized, and stacked away for next year. Decorations have to be cleaned and put away.

I haven’t done the pruning yet, either.

I have to oil the teak furniture again before I put it away for the winter.

All I can do is the best I can do, each day. Every dry day, I’ll do a little bit. Eventually, it will get done, even if it’s not on the same schedule as the neighbors.

But hiring someone to mow made a huge difference this year. So I hope he’ll come back next year.

Feb. 28, 2019: Indoor Planting Joy

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Thursday, February 28, 2019
Waning Moon, 4th Quarter Sagittarius moving into Capricorn
Celtic Tree Month of Ash
Snowing and cold

I’m pretty thrilled about the way the seeds have germinated. The scallions, the leeks, and the Roma tomatoes are going like gangbusters. The eggplants are starting. I just planted the chocolate cherry tomatoes and the peppers on Monday, so they need a few more days.

It makes me so happy to check on them every day and see their progress.

I’ll have to repot the leeks and scallions soon, separating them and putting them in bigger pots.

I’ll have to invest in some more large pots for the tomatoes, but it will be worth it.

It’s snowing today, so, although the calendar calls it a planting day, I think I’ll wait. I also came across something that stated one shouldn’t plant on the first three days of March. Anyone know the story behind that? Because according to my calendar, the first and the second are planting days. But I can wait until next week — although Mercury goes retrograde next week, and I would much rather just hide under the covers until it goes direct!

How’s your indoor seed starting going?

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Outside Snow, Inside Planting

Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Day before Waning Moon
Fourth Quarter Moon in Capricorn
Celtic Tree Month of Rowan

Laugh all you like, but two little mcintosh apple shoots, three little pear shoots, and two pepper plant shoots have come up!

Nothing from the garlic yet, and I also planted small carrots and radishes.

Radishes are supposed to be easy, but I am the only person on the planet who can’t successfully grow a radish. I’m determined to change that!

Snowing heavily today — I’ll be shoveling, and the local wildlife will shelter under the deck again, I’m sure.

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