The Greening of Brookwood Shire

The weather has been just wonderful the last few days. The sun has been shining and it has been warm. After a long, cold winter, spring warmth and colors are so glorious! Everyone was outside enjoying the day. It is so strange in the winter. You never see anyone. No one is out. It is too cold to stand around and just chat. Everyone scurries into their houses to be warm. But this warm weather has brought everyone outside. My neighbor came by twice with her new grandson. My other neighbor was walking his dog and stopped to chat. Another neighbor and fellow permaculture gardener came by to see the gardens. The kids next door were playing in their yard. People were riding bikes. It was like all of a sudden the whole world had come to life! It really has been a long winter.

I have been busy in the gardens all week. Nothing like playing in the dirt! I have finished raking out all the old leaves and tidying all the flower beds. I have mulched them with last year’s leaves that have been shredded. Everything is looking very happy and the plants have just burst into life! The woodland gardens are especially lovely at this time of year.

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The Bleeding Heart is up, the ferns are uncurling and the primroses are still cheery and colorful.

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The Virginia Bluebells are coming into their glory.

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And the delicate blue flowers of the Jack Frost Brunnera have appeared.

In the other woodland garden things are also happening.

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St Francis hides behind a screen of bleeding heart.

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The violets are blooming.

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The phlox is just starting and the lamium has come back to life.

It is such a treat to see the gardens returning. I have missed them.

I spent a good part of today “potting on” my seedlings. I went to the Farmer’s Market last week and noticed that the vegetable starts they are selling are HUGE compared to mine. When do they start them? I felt bad until I checked with a friend. The seedlings she started are like mine. Still, maybe they need a boost. So I repotted them all today.

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Here are the tomatoes and cucumbers.

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Here are more in my seed starter. You can see how big the dill is. I bought that at the Farmer’s Market. The eggplant and peppers, the first seeds I started, are coming along, but the lettuce is tiny! The other tray is more tomatoes, chard and borage. They were the last seeds I started.

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I am using both seed starters now, and I still have overflow. Tonight I will leave some of the plants out in the seed starters. I have been bringing everything in at night, but it isn’t supposed to be very cold tonight, so the lettuce, broccoli and alyssum will stay out. They don’t mind a bit of cold. But the tomatoes, basil, peppers, and eggplant are very tender plants. I will take them in at night for awhile longer.

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The peas are doing well. Still small, but looking very happy. Unfortunately, the spinach I planted is not doing much. A couple of very tiny green leaves have appeared, so I haven’t given up all hope, but it is not looking good. Oh well, the Farmer’s Market will have them.

I planted some onions and lettuce (the giant stuff from the Farmer’s Market) and some thyme today.

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The garlic and chives are looking good as well.

I have finally worked out what I will plant where. I have more gardens than last year, but more plants as well. I have been checking my gardening books to see what plants like each other and trying to rotate everything so no one is in the same place year after year, so it is a bit tricky. But I have a tentative plan. I still have to add more compost to last year’s beds. And I have the winter’s poopy straw from my girls to spread around. Lots more to do!

But what better way to spend one’s time?

About patti

I am a retired kindergarten teacher, tending a new kind of garden now, raising chickens and exploring permaculture. I live with my husband, Bill, my beloved dog, Fergus and my cat, Mighty Merlin. We have a small cottage and a tiny bit of land called Brookwood Shire. It is our sanctuary.
This entry was posted in Gardens, Nature, Spring, Sustainability and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to The Greening of Brookwood Shire

  1. hobacaitbe says:

    Why do we enjoy playing in the dirt so much??
    I think it has something to do with control issues. We are so not in control with so many things in our lives and the world that we like to think we are in control in our gardens. Maybe Dr. Phill knows.
    Ed
    PS. Was a beautiful weekend.

    • pattigail says:

      Thanks for the info on your cold frame. There may just be one in my future. As for control…..you are right that we like to ” think” we are in control of our gardens…arrogant creatures that we are, but of course we are not….mere tenders, working for (let’s hope not against) the Great Mother. Happy Gardening! Patti

  2. the Shire is looking lovely!! Your hard work will pay off, and now you are having fun!

    • pattigail says:

      Thanks Joan. I am completely hooked. And I think woodland gardens are so peaceful…and their season too short. Come by after school someday and you can see them in person. Patti

  3. wspines says:

    Patti,
    Everything looks so good. I made a discovery last week that the plants I started with the flat disc’s did much better than the ones I started in the peat pots. Everything else was the same. I am using organic fish emulsion on both.

    • pattigail says:

      I saw that in your blog and made a note of it for next year. Fish emulsion, eh? More gardening secrets to learn. Please blog about it! Also the recipe for your orange cleaner would be nice. You are a woman of many talents!

  4. Pam R. says:

    This is what I found to accomplish the rotation. It’s a wonderful, pretty user friendly program:

    http://www.growveg.com/Default.aspx

    You get the first year free, at least when I started with it, you did. I found it well worth the price.

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