Archive for February, 2007

February 25, 2007 Garden Journal

Monday, February 26th, 2007

What a day in the garden!  Received the raspberry and blackberry bushes fron Gurney’s and had them soaking for a few days in a bucket.  Put them in the ground  at the back end of the property where a fence will be going in.  They have already started to bud!  I have 3 dwarf blackberries and 3 raspberries.

Removed the Myer’s lemon from the ground and put it into a pot.  It was doing really well until I watered it with our local water.  It shriveled up within a day.  I hope the new dirt and better water will help the poor little thing.

Dug the perimeter for the new vegetable bed.  Installed the retaining wall sections and secured them.

Used weed and feed on what is left of the grass.  Watered it and hope for the best.

Mapped out front border (keep changing my mind on the design).  I think this will work great and fits the fountian great.

Looking forward to working out there tomorrow!

Gardening Journal 2-9-07

Friday, February 9th, 2007

Not too much to report other than Raj and I got the 4 Charpanel Grapes planted along with the fig, apple, peach and pecan trees.  Hope they take!

Homeschooling Again

Wednesday, February 7th, 2007

Well, was not sure if I would ever homeschool again, but here I am in the second week of homeschooling Jay.  I was trying to prepare him for going to Kindergarten next Fall and enrolled him in pre-school.  He lasted about 5 days and began hating it because he was so bored.  I was not sure what to do with him!  Raj and I talked about it and we were not going to force him to go to someplace  he absolutely detested and would cry so hard about going he would almost hyper-ventilate.   First, that is not Jay behavior at all.  He is pretty even keel and verbally communicates so well that you think you are talking to a little adult, so this crying into a fit when we would pull into the driveway of the school was way out of character for him- especially after he was the one who chose what school he wanted to go to!

Anyway, Raj and I decided to see if he would work at home.  We put together a chart with the things he needed to accomplish each day and I pulled out my old curriculum and started planning his educational experience.  He has totally ‘wowed’ me with his enthusiasm towards schooling at home.  He has approached each day with a positive attitude and stays on task as best a newly five year old can.

He has been busy learning without complaint for about 3-4 hours every day (except Friday – that is play day).  He listens to the stories, memorizes passages, answers questions, asks questions, completes his assignments, includes his little brother, is learning to read, learning Spanish on the computer and having an all around good time.

The amount of fights he starts with his little brother have decreased by over half and he is generally a happier little guy these past few weeks.  I am amazed with him and hope it continues for as long as it works. :-)

Gardening Journal 2-7-07

Wednesday, February 7th, 2007

Picked up the mini orchard (Peach, Pecan, Fig, Apple, 4 grape vines) this past Saturday.  There is a large number of families in the area that grow crops organically in order to raise their self sufficiency factor and the mini orchard kit was assembled to help get more families involved in movement.  I have always wanted a small orchard and to have fresh and organically grown produce for my family to enjoy rather than paying an arm and a leg for chemically enhanced versions.  Anyway, picked up the plants and hopefully going to get them in the ground this week or early next week depending on how the weather holds up.

Had an estimate on getting the pond dug and the back yard leveled, now just need to wait for the water to dry up a bit to see if we hit clay so the water holds in the pond.  We want to do an earth pond (40’x60’) to collect rain water and to pump from to irrigate the plants and grass.  If we don’t have clay I am not sure what I am going to do as I am depending on that for so many other aspects of this garden plan I am envisioning.

Getting a quote on the driveway extension on Friday and I sure hope it is going to be reasonable.  I need the kids off the main drive and into their ‘basketball’ area.  These kids (not only my own, but the entire neighborhood of kids) convene in my front yard to play basketball, baseball, soccer, football, and everything else you can think of.  My ornamental Kale was beheaded today when an overzealous little bugger ran through  one of my garden beds after the basketball.  I was miffed. My other beds have been mucked over as well and I surely hope that all my little daffodils survive the trampling they are taking.

As for the daffodils, they are breaking through the mulch and the dutch iris have nice healthy foliage already.  My rose had it’s first bloom today, though it does have a bit of black spot.  The color of the bloom was vibrant yellow, much deeper than what I expected it to have.  It is beautiful though.

The bulbs in the containers are coming up as well.  I was not sure how well they would do as I planted them right before the rains hit.  I figured the soil might get pounded out away from them as it was spewing everywhere when the heavier rains would fall, but all seems good so far.  I am really excited to see some of these bulbs!

I started seeds yesterday for red yucca, sunflowers, marigolds, corn and green peppers.  I hope that they will all take and grow.  The green peppers and red yucca are from seeds I collected and the others are from store bought packages.  We will wait and see! :-)

Today I moved the boxwoods (6 of them) to their new home.  They will hedge the utility boxes on one side of our yard.  I transplanted 9 of the 12 mums strategically by the boxwoods to add some color this fall.  I will also add Stella D’Oro daylillies over there and a few other things as I get them.  It should really make a statement once everything is planted and starts maturing.

I laid out the hose to define the front bed I want to make.  I can not wait to put the little millstone fountain in .  I hope to start digging on that tomorrow, though I need to find the right rock to do a dry-stack retaining wall to edge the bed.  It will be more a decorative edge than a retaining wall.  I also want to use the same rock to go around the fountain.  The fountain can be dug in, but I want it to be more of a focal point, so I am only going to place it partially in the ground and have about 4 inches above where I will set stone around it and feature it better.  I think it will look fantastic- again, if I can find the right stone.

I took some ‘before’ pics and just got the cd this afternoon.  I will post the photos of my ‘little’ project on soon.  Will keep you posted on the progress.