Monday, January 19, 2015

Sharp Stuff

I was gifted with a warm afternoon.
It was perfect to spend some time outside sharpening garden tools for the coming growing season.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Seeds Ordered

I spent some time with the seed catalogs today and made out my orders this evening.

I knew there would be changes to the edibles list for 2015.  Some varieties were switched and I found two new things!

A more compact variety of basil that does well in containers was selected.  Last year, after I froze all the basil I wanted for winter, I just let the plants flower and feed the pollinators.  With a more compact variety, I may just plant some containers with basil to be decorative this year reserving the option to snag a leaf now and then.

I dropped red salad bowl lettuce from the ordering list. Only one of the catalogs carried it and I kept my ordering to two catalogs to save on shipping.  I might find it locally at the garden center and still plant some.

A specialty melon named tigger got my attention.  It looks interesting and the single serving size of white flesh intrigues me.  I have not eaten it.  I'm just going to try it.

The parsley change was just an availability issue.

The different pumpkin variety claims to ripen faster.  With our temperamental autumn temperatures, I thought faster was better.

The new radish is a purple one.  I like purple!


leaf: red salad bowl


parsley *
flat leaf
giant of italy

large: jack-o-lantern
medium:  magic lantern


Sunday, January 11, 2015

Seed Stash

I dug out the vegetable seeds box Friday evening to see what I had on hand.  One post back, I have the list of what I will likely plant.  The varieties don't change much from year to year as I've gardened enough years now to know what usually works for us, and I don't have a huge space to try a lot of different things.  Not all of that list will go in the garden.  I will edit as the season unfolds;  but, there is bound to be something new I'll want to try also.  I have my collection of seed catalogs ready for some serious perusing.  I did manage to narrow it down to three that I may order from.

This post is property of

Edibles 2015

basil *

snap: contender  (buff valentine) (bush)

scarlet nantes

slicers: marketmore 76

garlic *
hard neck

kohlrabi *
early white vienna
purple vienna

leaf: salad bowl
leaf: black seeded simpson
romaine: forellenschluss “speckled trout”
romaine:  red
soft head (butterhead) : buttercrunch


melon, muskmelon
hales best jumbo

melon, watermelon
round, striped: crimson sweet

onion sets
red comred (red)
ebenezer (white)

parsley *
giant of italy

shelling types: little marvel (dwarf)
snow peas: melting sugar

bell: golden bell:  starter plant
bell: lilac:  starter plant
jalapeno: mucho nacho: starter plant
jalapeno: capsicum annuum

medium:  magic lantern

multi-colored: french breakfast
multi-colored: sparkler
multi-colored: scarlet turnip white tip
red: cherry belle

squash, summer
early prolific straightneck
black beauty (zucchini)
early white bush scallop

squash, winter
table queen acorn
candy roaster

grape/cherry type: chocolate cherry: starter plant
grape/cherry type: sweet baby: starter plant
grape/cherry type: red cherry: starter plant
plum/roma type: amish paste: starter plant
plum/roma type: la roma: starter plant
standard slicers: early girl: starter plant

----- Perennials -----

asparagus *
jersey knight

chives *

mint *

strawberry *

----- Extras -----

red cored chantenay

slicers: white wonder

* not on vegetable planting/harvesting calendar

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Hyacinth Bulbs Freed From The Refrigerator

In early November, I put six hyacinth bulbs into a brown paper bag and put the bag into the refrigerator.  Hyacinth bulbs need a chilling period to bloom.  I labeled the bag clearly so no one would eat the bulbs.  :-)

Today, I pulled the bag out of the refrigerator and inspected the bulbs.  Each has a sprout starting to show.

I gathered two hyacinth bulb vases, a couple of other vases that will work because they have 'necks' and a couple of bud vases which I filled with glass pebbles.  Each vase is filled with water to just below the hyacinth bulb.

Now, to put them in a sunny room (but not in the sun) and wait for growth, roots and blooms.

This post is property of

Monday, January 5, 2015

During Moments of Winter, Roast Something

Last Saturday, I posted the January tour photos.  I took those that morning.

We then enjoyed the day with temperatures getting above freezing and much of the snow melting.  However, there was a winter weather advisory posted for our area for that night.

Around 4 pm, this arrived.


It got much worse before it let up.
The state highway department closed the major roads in our area because visibility was near zero as it got dark.

I had the perfect project ready.

Last summer, my candy roaster squash plants were quite productive.  After sharing several with friends, I still had a stockpile of them on our coffee table in the family room.

Candy roaster squash stores very well.  You can just roast one as you need it, but I decided to try roasting the seeds this year too.  So, I wanted to do all of them at once.

Each was cut open, seeds removed, wrapped loosely in foil and roasted for about an hour at 350 degrees.

 That was just long enough to soften them so a spoon would easily scoop out the squash.

Into freezer bags to be reheated later with different additions like brown sugar or olive oil with garlic salt.

Then, I roasted the seeds using my roasted pumpkin seed recipe.
I did save some of the seeds for planting in the spring.

The candy roaster squash seeds have a nuttier test.
My wonderful husband approved them for future roastings. 

Now, I have space on my coffee table, roasted seeds to snack on and squash in the freezer for suppers.

We spent an hour on Sunday digging out of a 2.5" snowfall that put drifts in the most inconvenient places:  the driveway and the patio.  At least the wind stopped sometime Saturday night.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

January Tour 2015

Front Garden


Back Garden

Side Garden

Vegetable Garden