Friday, February 24, 2012


So I have a new hobby. Actually we have a new hobby as I am hoping to entice my husband into helping me with this. I have been to several meetings and joined the local bee school and it is a lot more complicated than I expected. We picked up the hive this week. It arrived in kit form in about 500 pieces and kept Roger busy glueing and banging nails in our garage for two days, but we now have a fully assembled hive. The bees don't move in to their brand new home until mid April, which is just as well as we have 'Beekeeping for Dummies' to get through before they get here.
I will keep you posted on developments - watch this space!

Saturday, February 11, 2012


Did you know how great seaweed is for your garden? Yesterday I popped down to the beach ( another advantage of living near the ocean!) and collected two big bags of seaweed and spread it over the top of my newly dug vegetable beds. Leaving the soil bare is not good as all the nutrients are leached out by the weather, so apart from adding micro-organisms to the soil seaweed acts as a mulch to prevent erosion and drying out. No need to wash the salt out either as the amount in it will not do any harm.
Next year, in the fall I intend planting a green manure crop of rye and vetch to protect the soil and dig over in the spring to fertilize the beds.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Are your daffodils coming up already?

It may only be early February but there are signs of life in my garden here on the Cape. Yesterday I was so excited to find four inches of daffodil foliage in my woods. I planted 50 new bulbs last October and I think they have all come up. Don't worry that the frost will damage them, they are pretty tough and it will be awhile before they don a flower.
I also saw leaves on my autumnn crocuses, they produce leaves in spring that die back during the summer and beautiful large pink flowers in the fall. Worth the wait.

Forsythia forcing for indoor flowers

Who doesn't want spring flowers in their home in late February and March? This is the time, on a lovely sunny day like today, to pop outdoors and cut some branches from spring flowering shrubs like Forsythia and Quince. Not too many though or you won't get to enjoy them outside this spring.  To get a head start on spring you can cut a few, recut the stem at an angle and put them in a vase of slightly hot water. I put them down in the basement for a few weeks but keep an eye on them and bring them into the warm of your house just as they start to open up.