Out of the dozens of bulbs I planted last fall I am glad at least to have these few tiny plants: like rare pearls thrown up from the waves of chinook winds. They are growing in their blooms and one is yet to emerge fully from the soil, but I'm hoping this is the start of a minute spring family and I'm protecting them like gold!
This winter I purchased two bird feeders to attract winged visitors; however, the visitors that ate the most and ended up staying were two squirrels: one black, one grey. When I took the feeders down in exasperation, they decided to look for food elsewhere. Each day I would come home to little potholes dug all over the garden.
Hence, the red specks you see on the soil here and there and even dusted on some of the greenery: cayenne pepper. On top of the snowdrops I have placed dessicated evergreen boughs: prickly but natural cages to keep the squirrels away.
The last few days I'm finally feeling the urgency of garden work that this season brings. I've been checking on things to see what has survived and today after seeing spinach up yesterday, I planted more 'King of Denmark,' West Coast Seeds' Stir Fry blend and Hakurei turnips. I covered all of this with row covers held down with bricks. This will also protect my strawberries and the eight garlic sprouts I counted today. (The next two nights' temperature forecasts are -6 and -7ºC. We also had snow today and more is anticipated tonight.)
|The first bulb of garlic to break through the soil. The others are much smaller.|
|I planted these seeds on March 30 and yesterday I pulled one out before realizing it was actually a spinach seedling. |
4 out of 5 seeds have germinated in this patch. The other two patches: 2/3 and 2/5.
|These two raised beds will be dedicated to food production experimentation. Bottom is strawberries and spinach so far; |
the top bed is garlic, stir fry mesclun mix and hakurei turnips. Future seeds will include carrots and radishes.
So this morning I soaked peas for 5 hours and because I couldn't find last years' inoculant, experimented with putting worm compost in the bottom of the planting holes. I'm hoping there's at least a little rhizobium bacteria in there. I top dressed lightly with Sea Soil and covered the whole thing with a sprinkling of cayenne and another row cover.
|Soaked peas and vermicompost. I planted West Coast Seeds' Sugar Ann at the bottom of each vertical bar|
and Little Marvel in the centre and the rest of the circumference of the obelisk.
Even though these supposedly don't need staking, I've been advised differently.
|Showy Jacob's Ladder from Wild About Flowers.|
|Gentian 'Blue Cross' from Rundle Wood Gardens.|
|Another gentian I rescued from a Canadian Tire end of season sale.|
|Euphorbia 'Bonfire.' Two out of three survived so far.|
|Cranesbill 'Ballerina.' Also two out of three survived so far.|