Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Thanks for saving me from myself.

Last night, as I was making my sorrel and lovage soup, Tony asked, "Why are we always eating weeds?"

"Because greens are a lifesaver," I shot back.

That said, my husband has been a real trooper for the past six months as I've cooked my way through what is, I must admit, an obsession with greens. So thanks, Tony, for that pathetic plea. Otherwise, this beautiful weed growing under my crepe myrtle would have been in the pot for dinner tonight.

This is how I define stupid.

I was at the dentist today and flipped through the 10th anniversary issue of Real Simple, where I spotted this new use for an old product: Use crocs as planters. Yeah, like I'm going to hang the ugliest shoes on the planet all over my backyard. Do they really thing pansies will make a difference? Have the editors at Real Simple finally lost their minds?

Monday, March 29, 2010

A reminder about easter tulips

Just in case you forgot: This is why you should never leave a potted tulip in the car, even on a cool day with the window cracked.

Urban foraging at its best

This evening when I took Griffin for a walk, I noticed my neighbors across the street had discarded several large shrubs. As I walked past, I realized they were huge rosemary bushes! I was flabbergasted that anyone would pull up such beautiful plants and fortunately, Grif did not pee on them.

So when I got back home, I took my pruners and walked across the street to clip off rosemary branches to use, dry, and give away. Then, while I was clipping, I decided to drag home the entire bush. I clipped off the dead wood, put a little water in a trash can, and dropped in the bush for an overnight. It's huge, but I'm hopeful I can find somewhere in my yard to transplant it and cautiously optimistic that it will survive. We'll see. I'm pretty well convinced that my neighbors, if they saw me, probably think I'm nuts.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The colors of spring

Today is the first day of spring, and it's a Saturday too, so what's not to celebrate? My yard is a mess: tree branches from last week's storm, Sycamore balls, leaves left over from winter, weeds, weeds, and more weeds. I spent four hours raking and bagging and dragging, and I can't see much improvement. But despite all that mess, my spring flowers are making quite a show. All the bulbs in our yard were planted by Helen Glaser, who built our house in 1957. I've done nothing, except throw a little fertilizer on them every few years. They are the gift the keeps on giving. I especially love this pair of daffodils, trapped by the still dormant wisteria vines. They are the first daffodils to bloom in my yard every spring because they get the morning sun. The lenten roses are favorites too. I planted these natives about five years ago, and they get more beautiful every year.

A few days later

Within three days, the seeds were sprouting. First the cosmos, followed by the tomatoes, thyme, basil and finally the chives. A week later, I started thinning them out. Here they are, growing and getting too leggy (I think). I'm starting to panic because I think my seedlings will be ready to plant before I get my garden ready. I may be doing container gardening after all.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

What a little warm water can do

I've also planted some seeds: tomatoes, basil, thyme, chives, and cosmos (yes, I'll have some flowers in that garden, too). Be forewarned: Planting seeds to transplant is a little complicated. First, there's the decision of whether to go with pellets or those little, biodegradable pots. My friend Chris said to go with the pellets, but because I have to over complicate everything, I decided to try both approaches. Trust me on this: Go with the pellets. All you do is add warm water, wait a few minutes, and then watch the pellets expand into dozens of fat, short penises. No kidding. It was rather amazing. Who said gardening can't be fun?

Tony lends a hand

If you’ve read the name of this blog, you’ve probably figured out that I hope to post my adventures planting a vegetable garden this spring and summer. Can I blog and get a garden growing simultaneously? I have my doubts. Already I’m behind. I’ve started the blog, but haven’t written my profile. I’ve planted my seedlings, but haven’t dug my garden. I’ve taken photos, but haven’t made the posts. So what have I done? I did find this really cool plant stand at Lowes on sale for $30 for my seed trays, which is now in my hall, thanks to my husband, Tony, who actually put it together.

The morning after the storm

Just to get acquainted with us, here is Griffin and me the morning after the storm, feeling much better. He's happy to be outside. Me, well, I'm daydreaming about my vegetable garden.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Spring blows into Memphis

Griffin, our family dog, is a tiger when he spots cats, squirrels, or motorcycles. Thunderstorms, on the other hand, turn him into a terrified monster. Last night, at 12:20 a.m. when the first spring storm blew in off the Mississippi, he lost his mind, barking like a madman. I finally got up, gathered up his bed, and settled him down with me. Thunderstorms, tornado watches, barking dog, crocus blooming: Spring has arrived in Memphis.