Monday, May 2, 2011

Green Thumbing It

Since I last wrote, the weather has gone from winter to summer and then back to winter (not quite, but it is damn chilly today!), my eldest turned 2, Prince William (last name:  Mountbatten-Windsor, if you can even believe) of the UK married,  Bin Laden was killed (apparently) and Donald Trump has become the next president of the United States (ok, it hasn't been quite that long, but who knows between this entry and the next...)...and it's only been a month!  But perhaps the most remarkable development of all, since I last wrote, is the growing season has begun...

tomatoes, sunflowers and yellow beans


green beans and sunflowers

(insert appropriate 'ooooos' and 'awwwwws' here please)  Mayu hates me for this time, as all of my seedlings are kept in our bedroom - if you follow his blog nerdhusbandfather you may remember some venting last year!  

For those of you not interested in green-thumbing, this might not make your 'Top 10 Comebacks', yet, this blog entry promises to be magnificent.  No, I'm kidding, I can't make such will merely follow with 'fun facts' about parsley and fertilizer...oooooo, and, wait for it....GREEN BEANS!  Yes, this is my new project - flowers are always on the agenda, together with herbs and peas and splicing of my sedum, hosta and rhubarb, but this year, in addition to continuing the tomato tradition (albeit last year was a disaster) I will be planting the following edible plants:  green beans, yellow beans, peas, and sunflowers (mostly for the birds).  Moms & dads out there - these are all very easy and fun ways keep your kids outside.  Both my girls are CRAZY for our garden, which is a huge motivation to keeping it stocked (if you don't have a garden, much of what I plant and will further discuss over the season can be planted in boxes on your balcony, or even inside on a window sill).  Both girls help to plant and dig outside (Poppy just eats dirt mostly, but she has a blast doing so!) and Olive has learned, quickly, which paths to take in the garden to get to the herbs and rhubarb without trampling the flowers.   Every evening, following dinner, we head outside (if we've come in at all...usually we eat dinner outside and don't come in until bathtime/bedtime) to water everything.  Both girls love it; Olive has her own watering can which she dumps and fills as quickly as possible, and Poppy drags herself along trying to keep up.   It really is a magnificent time of year to have little ones around.  In fact over the Easter weekend, it wasn't just our kids helping, it was all the neighbourhood kids - all little people seem to easily get into the spirit of things. 

Easter gardening with the neighborhood kids

 And if you do take heed -  a great, organic fertilizer is nettles.  Take a bunch of the readily available weed, chop them up into a bucket (keeping your gloves on the entire time of course), fill the bucket with water and let rot (a couple weeks is usually good - but the stinkier the better, and MAN can this concoction get stinky!).  Mayu complains about my chosen method of fertilization, because of the putrid smell...but, truthfully, you only need to use about a cup diluted in a large watering can, once a week - I do it late in the evening, before bed, it smells for an hour or so but by morning there's no trace and all your plants remain KID FRIENDLY (not to mention earth-animal-etc friendly)!! 

Olive eating some garden goodies...
Poppy enjoying the sun, her snack and the daffodils (I'm only guessing)

Until next time (and be rest assured, as you lay your head down to sleep tonight, that you will not have to wait for another savvy read for as long as you waited this time),

Grumpy Old Sarah

As promised:  It is said that parsley goes 7 times to the Devil and back before it germinates (because of the long time it takes to grow).  Moreover, because of the difficulty in growing it, it is said that only witches or evil people can grow it...some food for thought if you're planting to keep anyone away...but also to keep in mind if you choose to grow from seed (I have quickly learned, that, this is as tough as they say).  


  1. I love it! Ted and I started to garden this year and we are proud parents. We update each other all the time on the latest with the tomatoes and peppers-our life isn't as exciting as it would be if we had little ones running around:) Maybe, if our garden does well, we'll send you some homegrown, homemade salsa from Texas.

  2. Oh and I love the photos of the girls, and yes Mayu, I remember you disliking the tomato plant invasion. I hope it's not as difficult this year!

  3. YES PLEASE, Natalie...I've heard nothing beats Texan salsa ;) So good to hear you are in the spirit of things!