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!

Thurs. April 18, 2019: The Weather Works Against Me

Thursday, April 18, 2019
Day Before Full Moon
2nd Quarter Moon in Libra
Jupiter Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Willow
Rainy and cool

I’m trying to remember what got done since last Thursday. The days I’ve been free to do yard work have not coincided with the weather, unfortunately. What were supposed to be a string of sunny days weren’t.

I started work on the side yard, and I got the front beds raked out. Cut back a lot of invasives. Got one load of yard debris to the dump, and am accumulating another.

Bought six-packs of Romaine lettuce (grow your own; avoid e-coli), Buttercrunch, and Boston lettuces. Got a six-pack of parsley. They are all happy in their new pots. Got the pansies into the hanging baskets out front, and in the barrel.

Yesterday, finally started replanting the Cherokee Purple tomatoes in big posts. Got some of them in; will get in more today, and then start replanting the Romas and the Eggplants.

Then I can move forward some of the other tomatoes, in smaller pots, closer to the windows.

The lettuce and parsley go out on the deck during the day on good days, and come in at night, because it’s still cold. The tomatoes are still too fragile to go out.

The forsythia and white Rose of Sharon are out on the deck; the hydrangea, lilac, and large Rose of Sharon will go out soon.

I need to put teak oil on the wooden furniture as it goes out on the deck, repaint the white plant stand, and decide if I want more pansies in the little teacup planters.

Again, I don’t know how much I’ll get done this weekend because of rain.

I’m posting most of the in-process photos on Instagram, where you can find me @devonellingtonwork.

Hope you’re having fun with your gardens, too! Drop a line or a photo or an Instagram link. I’d love to see how it’s going.

 

Thurs. March 28, 2019: It’s All About Tomatoes At This Point

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Thursday, March 28, 2019
Moon 4th Quarter in Capricorn
Mercury Goes Direct Today
Celtic Tree Month of Alder
Sunny and cool

 

I didn’t post last week. You might or might not have noticed.

I do have a photo of the two kinds of tomatoes and the eggplants, and how well they’re growing.

I’m debating whether to repot now and then repot again to their final big pots, or to let them grow in these little pots another week or two and then put them in their final big pots.

Today, I have to plant at least two more kinds of tomatoes. I have four more kinds of tomatoes to plant, and I don’t want to wait too long. Because I’ve been lax.

If the weather holds this afternoon, when I get back from an errand, I will start on the yard. I’m hoping I can do a little bit each day all the way through Sunday.

If I look at everything that needs to be done, it’s overwhelming, but if I look at each piece, and set myself a timed work period on every weather-permitting day, eventually, I’ll make progress.

There’s quite a bit I want to do differently this year, but I need to stop feeling pressure from the way other people structure their chores, and do what works for me. They’re not pressuring me; I pressure myself, and that takes the pleasure out of it, and then I procrastinate.

I’d rather enjoy more, and then I’ll get more done.

How’s your garden taking shape?

Fri. March 8, 2019: Steady Growth

Friday, March 8, 2019
Waxing Moon 1st Quarter in Aries
Mercury Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Ash
Sunny and cold
International Women’s Day

I completely forgot to post yesterday.

Every morning, I’m absolutely delighted to come downstairs and see how much the scallions, leeks, eggplants, Roma tomatoes, and chocolate cherry tomato seedlings have grown. Still waiting for the peppers to sprout.

Sunday is the next planting day; I’ll be repotting some of the scallions (and maybe leeks). I’ll also start the Gardner’s Delight tomatoes. I may have gone a bit overboard, with six kinds of tomatoes. Plus, I’m planning to buy a six pack of Sun golds when it’s time.

I’m going to need a lot of basil and marigolds to go with them!

But we’ll have a very healthy summer, if even half of the plants are productive!

It’s cold here; not much snow, but cold. When the snow melts and it warms up a bit, I have a lot of work to do to clean up the yard. I got the front in pretty good shape in the fall, but not the back. I’ll pay for it now.

Still, it will be worth it, once it’s done.

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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Thurs. Feb. 21, 2019: First Shoots

Thursday, February 21, 2019
Waning Moon
Third Quarter Virgo into Libra
No Retrogrades
Celtic Tree Month of Ash
Sleet, rain, warming up

I am so excited! Earlier this week, the leeks and scallions already started to sprout! I can’t believe how many of the seeds actually germinated.

I’ll have to thin them as soon as they are big enough, and replant some of them soon, nursing them. If I can keep them strong and healthy, we will have a good crop this season.

I don’t expect the eggplants to germinate for a few more days.

I planted Italian Roma tomatoes last weekend. This weekend, I’ll plant the seeds for the chocolate cherry tomatoes (the most fragile and fussy of the ones I’m planting this year), and also the peppers from saved seeds. Thanks to Edible Landscapes of Cape Cod for teaching me how to save seeds.

Obviously, all this seed starting is inside, and they’re placed in sunny windows. I hope that, by next year, I can set up shelves and grow lights and be more efficient about the process. But this year, it’s natural light, and lots of fussing and tending.

Even with the snow, the birds I usually hear in spring have started calling. Waking me up early. Not that I know what they are (I’m not much of a birder). But I enjoy hearing them and thinking, “oh, they’re back already.”

Bratty Bird, the nuthatch who teases Tessa all the time, is still wherever nuthatches go for the winter. But I bet he’ll be back and brattier than ever. About a dozen fat winter robins were dancing around on the terraced back area of the yard last week.

The backyard is very much a habitat.

Have you started any of your seeds yet? Which ones?

I’ll post pictures when the plants are larger.

 

Thurs. April 25, 2018: Sprouts

Thursday, April 26, 2018
Jupiter Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde

Well, it looks like we might actually get a bit of spring. Although the nights are still cold, and the heat’s still on way too much.

The lettuce sprouted, but it’s not looking great. The Principasse Borghese tomatoes have come up, and the Moneymakers are just starting. One pot of lemon verbana has a few shoots; the other does not. Two of the three scarlet runner beans are going like gangbusters.

The two Rose of Sharon plants, the potted lilac, the potted forsythia, the potted hydrangea, the potted blueberry, and the clematis are all back out on the deck. I have a couple of chairs out, and had my first official glass of wine out there on Monday afternoon.

Still plenty of yard work to do. Got some of the tree limbs cleared, but there are still plenty of leaves to rake. I’m mad at the road work crews; they’ve been working on my street. Their version of “clean up” at the end of the day is to leaf-blow their debris into my yard. This is not okay.

I hope the coming weekend is warm and sunny; there’s plenty I’d like to do, and I’d also like some time just to sit and enjoy!

Hopefully, I can take and post some photographs soon.

Wed. Feb. 12: Battling Sticky Webs

Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Waxing Moon Second Quarter Cancer
Jupiter Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Rowan
Sunny and cold

I wanted to post on Saturday, but got injured Friday night, and everything kind of went out the window for the weekend.

Starting Friday, I’ve been battling some weird bug thing attacking my citrus plants. It seems to spin a sticky web below the leaves and then suck all the life out of them. I washed all my plants, leaf by leaf, with ivory soap, rinsed them, and have been keeping a daily eye on them. some branches/leaves were too far gone. Others seem to be recovering. I have a lot of lemons, a tangerine, and a clementine — would hate to lose them.

The garlic plants double in size every day — two out of three came up. The radish plants came up, but not sure if anything’s happening below the surface. How do you check a radish or garlic or carrot without yanking it up? The leeks have started, the carrots have started. One of the pear plants died — I think I need to transplant the other shoots.

None of the herbs have come up yet. I hoped this would be a good year for basil.

A friend started her tomatoes this week. I might start some this week and then some on the Equinox, when I usually start them.

We’re supposed to get slammed by another storm tomorrow. The very thought of it makes me weary.

Think healing thoughts for my citrus plants! I don’t want to use chemicals on them, if I can avoid it.

Devon

Birdbath and Bugs

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Wednesday, May 8, 2013
Dark Moon, 4th Quarter Aries
Celtic Tree Month of Willow
Cloudy and cool

I finally found a birdbath I like, and I have happy birds splashing around in the yard. I figure I’ll clean it once or twice a week, but it’s now included in my daily morning stroll around the yard, connecting with the property and seeing what needs to be done.

The morning glories died — I think I put them out on the deck too soon. I’ll have to plant some more today.

Inside, I’m having trouble with those little cream colored bugs, infesting all sorts of my plants. They are especially aggressive with the eggplant, cucumber, lemon, calendula, and cyclamen. I have to de-bug these plants leaf-by-leaf. They haven’t been too successful with the tomatoes yet, but this is war. The stuff I bought at the garden center doesn’t work; ivory snow soap and water doesn’t work. I’m picking them off by hand, leaf by leaf, and washing the plants down, but I’ll have to dig into garden books and find something herbal that will kick ass. I also need more marigolds, especially to protect my tomatoes.

The tomatoes are getting moved to the “big girl” pots today, as are the bok choy, the cucumbers, and the peppers. It’s still too early to put them in the ground or even on the deck. But I’ll also start some other seeds, since it is a planting day.

Astrologically, I should wait until Friday to plant anything that appears above-ground, but I probably won’t. I have more lemon seeds, gala apple seeds, and jalapeno seeds harvested from bought produce to try, and I want to get some of the flowers going, too.

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The lamb’s ears in the terraced bed haven’t reappeared this year, but some invited themselves into the front lawn, so I’m going to dig them up and move them before mowing the front this morning. I mowed the terraced back area a few days ago, and then used the trimmers (I have hand edgers, not gas-powered) around some of the edges and yanked dandelions. I like the violets and johnny-jump-ups that pattern in the yard, and while I appreciate the dandelions, there are too many of them, and I’d rather they stayed in their own area.

It’s supposed to rain later this morning, and then rain off and on for the next few days, so I’ll be limited in what I can do. I hope to get started on mowing the meadow over the weekend, and maybe clearing out some more stuff at the property’s edges. I’d like to get some grass seed in a few places, before the rain starts.

In other words, I must adapt my day to the weather, not do things when I can fit them into my schedule!

Devon

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