April 2017
« Dec    

Off Topic

  • house at christmas
  • And Then It Turned Cold Again

    Typical Spring weather. It warms up and then cools down. Lots of rain which is good, then warm again – then cold. Spring is a messy, muddy time of year.

    It Sure Looks Like Spring Is Here

    It got quite mild today so I went out and pruned some of my hydrangea. They needed a good pruning. I had never done it before – just trimming down a little – but this time I took it seriously. There was a lot that needed removing. These hydrangea grow on new wood so Spring is the time to prune.

    I also noticed some of my bulbs are poking their little heads through the soil. Life renewing itself. This has been a very strange winter due to the el nino. I don’t like it. I like winters to be friggin’ cold and very snowy. I’m just worried that after the blossoms are out, it will turn real cold and kill everything just like what happened three years ago. That time we had no lilacs and fruit production was hit badly. Well the old saying is “in like a lion, out like a lamb”. March came in like a lion but we’re nowhere near the end of March and it’s lamb weather already.


    The newly pruned hydrangea just sticks now but wait a few weeks.


    The intense green is due to that location having been my kitchen garden. The soil is super rich amended many times, hence the deep green


    I wonder how they will look once they leaf out. The two trees in front got some major pruning.


    My latest junk shop find. They will be painted and maybe I’ll make cushions. Don’t know yet but even in the state they’re in, they are so comfortable. They’re metal but the strapping isn’t.

    Mar 9 '16, It's mild but still so bare.

    Mar 9 ’16, It’s mild but still so bare.































































    Reality Check

    OK, so a few seeds have germinated and I’m feeling very optimistic, the truth is it’s still February and there is a lot of winter left. Just to remind us what we had just a week ago and what is coming next week, here are a few shots to keep us humble.

    The swing bridge is gone, a new one is being manufactured as we speak. This means the whole bridge is closed and the only way to get from one side to another is to walk across on the pedestrian walkway. Many have parked their cars on one side and walk to the other for whatever they need. Since the north side is where the stores are more people walk over from the south side. Some people have bought an additional car so they have one on either side of the bridge.

    Well, it will all be done by May 24th if not sooner.

    While out taking pictures, we spotted a “junk shop”, my favourite place to visit. There I found 2 cast iron chairs that someone didn’t want. We scooped them up and brought them home. They will be perfect for the little nook under the elm where we can sit with a coffee or a cocktail.

    Life is good.

    _MG_5316 _MG_5319 _MG_5327

    A very cold hoarfrost morning

    A very cold hoarfrost morning

    _MG_5331 _MG_5339 IMG_5342 IMG_5344

    Russian Sage Has Germinated

    I could not believe my eyes. Germination has taken place. I’m just waiting for another day or so to take the cover off and place them in our “greenhouse”.

    In case you wonder why I have greenhouse in quotation marks, it’s because I’m referring to our jetted bathtub upstairs. Above it is a skylight. It has the most sun and light in the whole house. Since I have yet to use the tub, it occurred to me to change it into a makeshift greenhouse.

    Why didn’t I think of this before?

    Who has time for lying in a bathtub with candles burning? I guess I could make the effort but I always seem to be in a hurry.


    First Banana Seedling Raising Its Green Head

    Today is a good day. Finally, after about 6 weeks, I have my first banana plant poke its head through the soil. I’m betting the others will follow soon. I can’t wait to get them into the ground for a tropical feel – something different in the northern garden.

    I hope I can get them to overwinter.

    I also hope that soon my Russian Sage plants will germinate. I need some color other than yellow for the autumn garden.

    Also, I hope my castor bean plants will germinate. They are so dramatic.

    Banana Plant

    Today I finally planted my banana seeds. They’ve been soaking for about 4 days so hopefully they will thrive. I planted six of them in individual pots in moist potting soil and covered them with Saran Wrap. I had some success last year. However, only one ever germinated and I planted that one in the big pot on the porch. It grew into a lovely plant that I gave to a friend at the end of the season. They are using it as a houseplant.

    If they all germinate and thrive – and that’s a big if – I will plant them along the South Side of the house. It will get lots of sun and then I hope I’ll get them to overwinter too. I’ll do as my cousin in Austria explained and see what happens.

    Banana plant

    Banana plant

    Christmas 2015 – Tshirt Weather

    It’s Christmas Eve. At 5:30AM I looked outside to see a big orange moon slowly setting. There is a very warm breeze. It’s 15 Celsius or about 60 Fahrenheit. Did I mention it’s Christmas Eve? What is going on?

    There are many who are so happy with the weather. Golfers mostly. Although I am enjoying it somewhat, I worry what next summer will bring. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life. Where is the snow? I want snow.

    Window Boxes

    back porch arrangement

    back porch arrangement

    IMG_4734 IMG_4732 front window box black shutters

    Late Autumn and Still Working

    Charlie’s still cutting trees. I figure if they’re not pretty, they’re coming down but we’re keeping those logs. They will be stacked against one stone wall in the hen house because we’ll be building a fireplace. There is still more to cut.  A big old white pine fell during one of our storms.  I don’t think he’ll get it all done before the winter hits. However, from what I’m hearing about the super el nino, we won’t be having much of a winter so maybe he can work right through till Spring. Yeah! Hurray for global warming!

    So, looking at the hen house, I realize I have a lot yet to do to make this “party central”. More chairs and tables. Coffee tables, end tables. Tables to rest your drink and plate of food.

    View from the valley. So much work yet to do.

    View from the valley. So much work yet to do.

    Now to carry all these up the steep hill

    Now to carry all these up the steep hill

    I used to hate it so much but after so many people have claimed they loved it and wanted me to leave it , it's growing on me.

    I used to hate it so much but after so many people have claimed they loved it and wanted me to leave it , it’s growing on me.

    firewood and more coming.

    firewood and more coming.

    this is where the stone fireplace will be built.

    this is where the stone fireplace will be built.

    Bittersweet Season

    This morning as I was cutting back the peonies and daisies, a large gaggle of Canada Geese, squawking loudly and flying in V formation were heading South. The air was cool but not cold and it just seemed so – I don’t know – bittersweet, for lack of a better word. This is my favourite time of year but the long, cold winter is  drawing ever nearer.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love Winter too. Finally a respite from all that manual labour (of love). Thick soups, hearty stews, baguettes and cheese, a roaring fire, flannelette pyjamas and endless Netflix. Of course, there are always things to do indoors.

    For right now, I am deciding on what to put in the flower boxes for the winter arrangements. There are lots of evergreens to trim and bring home for this project. The sweaty work season isn’t over yet.

    Content Protected Using Blog Protector By: PcDrome.