Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Remedy for Seed Packet Chaos

I have never been accused of being an organized person. In someways I'm really thankful for that, but it wasn't serving me well in the realm of seeds. 
Until recently, I kept all of my seed packets in a really pretty box. A box which I often lost. Yeah, I'm quite the chronic loser.
Good Grief
So, if confronted with seed displays while out and about I'd commonly buy stuff I had at home or, even worse, I'd freak out and not buy something because I thought I had it. 


Well, I saw this awesome idea on "Gardening by the Yard." 
A Great Show hosted by a Tulsa Local

First, I grabbed the mystery box of seeds from under a pile of plastic pots in the garage or somewhere similar
Then I laid them all out 
(this picture keeps loading upside down, whatever.)
Then in one of my old school binders I filled plastic photo holders with the seed packets.

I held them in the little pouches with a piece of tape

 This was looking pretty good! So, now what?

Should I carry this binder at all times? 

Should I memorize it page by page? 

Should I just forget the whole thing and take a nap?

NO! I should do data entry... (lame)

So, I entered everything into MS Excel and made a spreadsheet (gag!)

The end result is that I am now able to print off a very portable list of my seed catalog. 
HEY! I can probably even load it on to my phone so I'll never be without this valuable information.

I envision a lot of efficiently purchased seeds in my future!!!

I still have all of my flower packets to do, but Pa'Sha to that!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What's in My Garden? (2011)

Here's what  I have so far...

30 different edibles growing this year (not counting herbs).
I've provided links to some of the plants. I tried to find reputable sites. 

3. Bell Pepper (better bell, green)
5. Blueberries (type 1) 
6. Blueberries (type 2)
7. Blueberries (type 3) 
I lost the information for the blueberries, but I know I chose them to cross pollinate for a larger yield 
just pulled these out because I wasn't happy with them and I wanted more room for a modified 3 Sisters Garden 
9. Brussels Sprouts 
13. Garlic (late season) 
17. Onions (yellow)
I had no idea how hot this cultivar was when I picked it out. Oh well..5,000 to 30,000 Scoville Units
growing in the chickens yard
20. Raspberries 
yeah once again I have no idea what type
24. Strawberries (ever-bearing ) 
25. Strawberries (june-bearing, early) 
the strawberries are from last years garden, but I have them potted up now
first time growing corn

I'm excited to see if I'll have enough room!!! I plan to use trellising for somethings, but it's all looking pretty tight.

Oh no, is that "tight" like in cool hip slang or "tight" like squeezed to close!?
Only time will tell...

Thank You Come Again.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


"AHH, there's a snake in My Beloved Compost!! Wait, no it's just the BIGGEST WORM EVER!!!"

I pulled this beauty out of my pile and it has caused me to question things...
You see, it's like 5 times bigger than all of the red wigglers (Which I added a while ago) so...

(a) It's just a Super-Sized Mutant red wiggler (It does look red-ish) or 
(b) It's a regular sized Native worm of which I am not familiar

I was unable to get accurate measurements on the creature (it kept changing lengths), but It was about 7 inches long and as big around as my pinky finger. (WHAT!? Yeah)

(you may think that's a penny... it's a dinner plate)

So anyway, I named it "Babe the Big Worm" and released it back into my beloved compost (MBC). 
I must also report that this has left me with quite a sense of accomplishment. As I set the monster free I smiled and thought, "Well, I sure do raise-up some big ol' worms." 

World Record Worm : Microchaetus rappi or "Giant South African Earthworm"

***Update*** GGG says it's a Night Crawler. She had a bunch of them in Her Beloved Compost back in Humbolt Co. (See, I told you I was totally NorCal). It's a great spooky name for a BIG Worm, though!!

Ghosts of Gardens Past

First True Garden:

While I had always been a container gardener, this real garden was a birthday gift from my husband. He built me 2 raised beds which together looked like an hexagon split in half.

It was such a cute little garden but also riddled with flaws. The main issues were that it was too wide for me to reach the center for weeding, we had filled it with the worst/cheapest bagged dirt we could find (sigh) and there was no easy watering system.
Later that year we had our son and moved into a new house. (BYE first cute, but flawed garden...)

I skipped one season of formal gardening. 
Reasons: 1. New Baby 2. New House 3. Accepted in to Veterinary College 
I don't remember that time very well. We existed in a constant state of sleep deprived chaos.

Second Real Garden:
In 2010 I set up a Lasagna/No Till Garden at our new/current home. 
I was so excited about this style of gardening which was not only recommended by my Gardening Guru Grandmother (the GGG), but also promised a great yield with little to know weeding. HURRAY, right?
Well, maybe it worked for The GGG (Whom I love dearly and also has the greenest of all thumbs), but I fought slugs, misshapen veggies and the most weeds I have ever had. This was not the style of garden I wanted.
Three things I kept from this incarnation of the garden were the over all shape, the neat drip line/soaker hose combo irrigation system and my beloved compost pile.

By the end of the season this garden was a JUNGLE!

Garden Design
 Starting the layers

Cutest Helper EVER!
Finished 2010 Garden

The first version of My Beloved Compost Pile (MBC)

(now this pile is a BEAST!)

My Current Garden:

So for the 2011 season I built on top of the previous years catastrophe, covering it with weed block and framing it in with 12X2 untreated lumber. 
We had a 50/50 mix of Compost and Garden Soil delivered
I built the frames

Filled them with soil and laid in my irrigation lines

Filled them with frost sensitive plants

And took off for a Spring Break Trip to California!!! (WEEEEE)
to my great surprise everything survived and the garden is now thriving. 

Next time I'll try to list everything I'm growing this season or maybe just list my favorite gardening podcasts.. who knows

Bye For Now!!!

Firefox was the agent of my original blog's demise

 Here we go again... I'm sorry if this inconvenienced anyone, but this blog will be bigger and better I'm sure.

I'll try to get a real post up in a few hours...

(original blog was: new blog has no "s" between raechill and garden actually you're here now