Thurs. Oct. 3, 2019: Slow Move into Autumn

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image courtesy of pixabay.com

Not much to report. Don’t even have the usual astrological information — except that Pluto turns direct today, thank goodness.

We’re coaxing along the rest of the tomatoes. We’re cutting back other plants. We’re making some decisions about other plants.

We have so many acorns! What a harvest. The squirrels and chipmunks are very happy.

I’m hoping for a quiet, productive weekend.

It’s been unseasonably warm here so far, but it’s cooling down. We’ve had a few days of wind and dreary drizzle. When it lets up, I’ll start the exterior decorating.

Autumn is my favorite season!

Thurs. Sept. 26, 2019: The Chance of More Tomatoes

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image courtesy of kie-ker via pixabay.com

Thursday, September 26, 2019
Waning Moon 4th Quarter in Leo
Celtic Tree Month of Vine
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Sunny, humid, moving towards rain

We’re having a warm, sunny September, which is nice. The days are lovely, the nights are cool enough to sleep.

I have more tomatoes forming on my plants. I hope these will have the chance to mature, so we can actually eat them!

I haven’t started raking yet, although I will soon. Once again, a lot of acorns are falling. That makes the squirrels and the chipmunks happy.

Our yard is a rest stop for migrating birds. Since we are the yard on the street that doesn’t use chemicals, they stop, have a rest and a snack, and then move on. It’s so interesting to watch them interact.

We still don’t know who or what comes onto the deck every other night. I hoped it was the little black cat, but haven’t seen her lately.

Once the yard is mowed (I think, at some point this week), I’m going to put down lawn food one more time for the season. I’ve been cutting back, although I’m waiting for first frost to cut back the roses (that’s what the rose book I read suggested).

I know I have to take down the large bittersweet, but it provides such wonderful habitat for wildlife.

I’m longing for a place that I own, so I can plant and do exactly what I want. We’ve had a lot of latitude here, and I’m grateful, but that’s still different from truly being able to build a garden over years, and not worry each season if that will be the last.

Still, autumn is my favorite season. Even, now that we’ve passed the Equinox, it gets darker early.

Think happy growing thoughts for the tomatoes!

 

Thurs. Sept. 19, 2019: Autumn Equinox in a Few Days

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image courtesy of pixel2013 via pixabay.com

Thursday, September 19, 2019
Third Quarter Waning Moon in Taurus
Pluto Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Vine
Partly cloudy and cool

Not much to say. I’m starting to put the garden to bed for the season. Cutting back. I’ll prune the roses after the first frost. I’m pulling up the tiger lily stalks as soon as the bulbs pull down the chlorophyll. I’ll cut back shrubs and branches and cut down dying vegetation.

By next week, I’ll start raking.

We’re still not sure what’s eating the food I leave on the deck at night. Not sure if it’s the stray cat or something else. I’d like to know.

Some more tomatoes have formed. Let’s hope these actually get to make it to maturity and we can eat them.

We had a few sugar snap peas to harvest, and they were yummy. I’m going to start them earlier next year, and hope for a better harvest.

The morning glories choked the beans, so we didn’t have any.

The zucchini keep blooming, but not forming any zucchini. We have some blossoms on the eggplants, but I think it’s too late for them.

Well, one learns as much from what doesn’t work as what does, I guess.

Monday is the Equinox, and then night begins to win until mid-December.

 

Thurs. Sept. 5, 2019: Unpredictable Gardens

Thursday, September 5, 2019
Waxing Moon First Quarter in Sagittarius
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Vine
Humid/Tropical Cyclone/Tropical Storm Watch

So, the last two weeks, I’ve been limited in what I can do because of the hand injury.

We also had the heartbreak of coming out on the deck one morning to find that all 120 tomato plants had been stripped of the tomatoes growing on them. No debris anywhere, or signs that they were eaten. Just all gone. I’m very disappointed. I grew most of those tomatoes from seed and had plans for them.

The Rose of Sharon has bloomed beautifully, and the Hibiscus in the back of the yard is finally blooming. The hydrangea on the deck is already done — usually it blooms until the first frost. The Tiger Lilies have come and gone, and most of the chlorophyll is drained back. Early this year.

I pruned the two forsythia bushes in front of the garage. They were out of control. I pruned another bush that was growing quite large in the front bed. I’m waiting until the first frost to cut back the roses. I watered the lawn, and fed it, trying to get it green again (organically).

We saw the little black cat again — she was hiding in the roses. I left food out for her on the back deck, but I’m not sure if she’s eating it, or if it’s someone else. If she’s lost, I want to help her find her way home. If she’s a stray, then she’s welcome to stay, if she wants.

I pulled out the tired pansies in the front and replaced them with yellow large marigolds and yellow chrysanthemums in the front baskets, and red chrysanthemums in the barrel in the front yard. They look nice and cheerful when you drive up. I also replaced the tired old front door mat (which was growing moss — literally) with a cheerful harvest mat. That, and the horn of plenty I have hanging on the front door, and we’re joyfully celebrating the change of season.

Red sky this morning — shepherd’s warning. It’s an eerie light. I think we’ll be spanked by Hurricane Dorian harder than they’ve said.

We may have to bring in all the plants and most of the furniture from the deck. And then decide if it’s worth putting any back out for the last few weeks.

Thank goodness I hired someone to mow, or I’d be even more overwhelmed.

Trudging on, not sure what to do next.

 

Thurs. Aug. 8, 2019: Joy of Red Geraniums

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Thursday, August 8, 2019
Waxing Moon Second Quarter in Scorpio
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny, hot, humid

Our red geraniums are going like gangbusters. To think, the second or third year we lived here, I bought them as small 3-for-$10 plants!

The tomatoes are growing, too. We lost some of them to rot, and some others are starting to get color. Hopefully, we can start enjoying them soon. The cucumbers are growing like wildfire — hopefully we’ll get some cucumbers. The eggplants and peppers look good, but haven’t yet bloomed.

The morning glories are acting like an invasive this year.

Haven’t seen the fisher lately. I worried he’d eaten the bunnies and Che Guevara Chipmunk, but saw both of them a couple of days ago, so they’re safe. I’m letting Tessa out with me on the deck in the mid-afternoon, but not early in the morning or at dusk.

It’s hot and humid, but leaves are starting to turn and fall. The hosta blooms have come and gone (I’ll have to cut them back soon). The basil is huge. The lettuce is almost done.

I have to figure out what to do with the kale soon. Maybe make a ham, white bean, and kale soup and then freeze it for winter?

How is your garden growing?

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Thurs. May 23, 2019: Trying to Catch Up in the Garden

Thursday, May 23, 2019
Third Quarter Waning Moon in Capricorn
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Hawthorn
Don’t know the weather — this is scheduled to post

This was a week of rolling up my sleeves to dig in the dirt.

I’m behind on the mowing, as usual, although I don’t hate it as much with the push mower as I did with the gas mower. I really need to see if I can sell the gas mower for a few bucks. I just want it gone.

I did the first treatment for ticks on the deck and I’ll do another one this weekend.

I started transplanting the tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers. I have more tomatoes to repot this week, but I wanted the seedlings to get a little stronger before I moved them. Repotted some herbs (parsley, rosemary, sage, thyme, lemon balm, chocolate mint). Did some trimming with the clippers, and cut back some stuff in pots that I hope comes back. The clematis looks good.

The lilac is blooming, and scents every breeze, which is a delight.

I planted some nasturtium seeds, all my morning glory and moonflower seeds, and about a third of my kale, mesculun, and spinach.

The chipmunk family under the bush is gearing up for the season. One little guy scampers onto the deck and gives little chipmunk speeches.

I was reading on the deck last weekend, recovering from the day’s work, and heard a noise. I looked up to see three young wild turkeys taking a stroll through the yard. Not in the least worried that I was on the deck. They took their time. Stopped for a snack here and there. It was pretty funny.

A young woodpecker got caught under the skylights of the covered deck. I managed to coax him out. Our bratty bluejay stopped by to give me the neighborhood gossip.

My murder of crows hasn’t been around much lately (I miss them). I saw a pair of bunnies down the street, but none yet in our yard. The coyotes have been quiet lately. I hope they weren’t shot. I actually feel safer when they’re around.

I’m hoping the weather will be warm enough these coming days to finish transplanting the tomatoes, and to start the cucumbers, beans, and peas. Maybe even the zinnias and the monarda.

I’ve been taking the plants out for the day and bringing them back in at night. I don’t want to lose any more.

I’ve never lived anywhere before where so much is dependent on the weather. Living in New York, weather was just another obstacle. Here, it dictates the rhythm of the day and the week.

Have a terrific Memorial Day weekend. I intend to spend as much time as possible in the garden. The rest, reading and writing. Online as little as possible.

 

Thurs. May 2, 2019: Unhappy Lettuce

Thursday, May 2, 2019
4th Quarter Moon in Aries
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Willow
Cloudy and cold

The weather is not cooperating. Rain and chill means that I can’t go much yard work. There’s a lot to do. Dry stretches aren’t coordinating with times I have off to do the work.

Most of the lettuce and the parsley isn’t doing well after being transplanted from the flats in which they came. This is the first time we’ve had trouble with lettuce or parsley transplants. The Romaine is holding its own, at least so far.

This weekend, I have to transplant a lot of tomatoes. I have a feeling I’ll be doing a run to the garden center for more pots and more dirt. But it’s still much too cold to put them outside. I’m worried about the lack of sunlight, too, stunting their growth.

Hopefully, we’ll have a bit of spring in May, and not just move directly into summer!

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