Tag Archives: garden

REPOT A PLANT

Its summer housekeeping over here this week. We’re cleaning and sprucing up some things on our to-do list, since its too hot to do much else in the garden.

Upon our kitchen window sill sat the cutest little plant. But that cute baby plant has grown into a gigantic monster that is spilling over and threatening to topple off the ledge.

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We are going to upgrade him to a real life hanging planter. We will need some potting soil, the planter, and the plant.

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The pot has holes in the bottom for drainage already, so that is convenient. We’ll fill it with some potting soil.

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Now we’ll place the plant in the soil, gently loosening roots as needed.

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Tuck some more nice, cozy soil around him, and give him a drink of water.

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So much more space to spread out and grow! Now to hang him by the window.

WEED REMOVAL, VOL. 2

If you aren’t feeling up to the work-out of pulling weeds with your muscles, we turn to our handy spray bottle. Since our goal is to always stay cool and organic, our reusable spray bottle is filled with 20% vinegar, which you can get at garden stores, or pretty much anywhere.

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So the strategy here is to spray the weeds. We douse them in vinegar. One of the drawbacks here is that it works best and quickest at the hottest part of the day. You can hear them sizzle in the sun.

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If you have a large patch of weeds, be sure to take a break for fresh air, and not spray into the wind. That vinegar is nasty stuff in the eyes. After they are good and sprayed, then comes the waiting.

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In a couple hours or a longer length of time, the weeds turn pale and crispy. They will be much weaker and easier to pull up now, or will eventually disintegrate into nothing, if you are being super lazy about it.

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Just be careful where you spray. Vinegar only knows how to kill. It doesn’t care what. So if you spray a flower, it will do the same thing to it as a weed. We use a piece of cardboard as a shield if we are spraying around plants.

Spraying weeds sounds like the easier way out, but being out in the afternoon summer sun, combined with the real fear of getting a cramped trigger finger, and mixed with the impatience of waiting until the plants die, can make it just as hard. Weeding is just hard. Weeds are sorry not sorry about it.

PLANTING PUMPKIN SEEDS

We have a pack of evil birds that roam the garden. They might be eating bugs, or doing other beneficial things, but you wouldn’t know it by their awful attitudes. Always up to hood rat stuff with their friends, pecking at tomatoes, and eating our seeds. Especially the seed eating. Then they don’t grow, and we are just left wondering- Was it them? Was it us? What did we do wrong? The not knowing is the worst.

After a fight over some pumpkin seeds, we decided to outsmart the birds, and start the seeds inside. Watching seeds sprout should be a tv show, and I would watch it all day all day long.

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After the seedlings grew to be a couple inches tall, and were rocking a strong set of leaves, we took them out to the garden to plant. We set the pots on their future homes for a little bit. Like a new goldfish.

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With all the gentle and careful, we scooped the seedlings out, and planted them in the mound with even more gentle and careful.

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Snug as a plant in some pine straw. After they were all planted, we fed them a little fertilizer with seaweed, to minimize the stress of moving. Lord knows we all need a drink after moving, right? Their signature cocktail is the John Droomgoole, who has the coolest gardener name, and may be a cartoon in real life.

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And just when you think you’ve outsmarted the birds, and the world is pumpkins and rainbows again, now we have to worry about the bugs. Grrreeat.

TOMATO WATERCOLOR CARDS

Let’s try something new today, shall we? These watercolor tomato cards would be perfect to include in any “garden extras” baskets, for when you are up to your eyeballs in tomatoes, and need to feed them to friends instead. Plus, tomatoes come in all shapes, colors, and sizes, so you would have to actually put effort into messing it up.

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We’ll need the basic watercoloring supplies. Some water, paints, brushes, and paper.

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I cut out a little square of paper, and drew a light outline with a pencil of a tomato. Its basically a potato shape with a spider hat.

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Now to color. To make mine, I wet the paper first, then add some color little by little, until I like it. Don’t think about it too much. Go with your gut. I filled it in, then went back and added a little more red-orange on the edge for shading.

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Wait for a hot minute for it to dry. Then paint the spider shape green, and you got yourself a tomato.

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After I finished the red tomato, I did a green rendition, and also a tribute to my garden favorite, the pear tomato.

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After its all dry, adhere it to the front of a card, and give it away to a friend or enemy, depending on how much you like your painting.

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WEED REMOVAL, VOL. 1

The enemies are among us. Since we know how to identify the impostors, we can start the business of eradicating them. Reminiscent of Helena on Orphan Black.

There are many different ways to get rid of weeds. Today we’ll talk about one of the more obvious ways- pulling them out of the ground with your hands.

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Here is a weed growing in some rocks. We don’t want it to grow there, so let’s get rid of it.

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When pulling a weed out of the ground, you need to locate its main root, the one that is attaching it to the ground and bankrolling its life.

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Grasp it at the root base firmly, and then finagle it out of the ground. The goal is to get as much of the root as possible.

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Be sure to try to get as much of the roots as possible. If you just get the peripheral leaves and appendages, you are just pruning it, and it can still continue to grow.

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It is sometimes easier to weed without gloves, because you can get a better grip. Weeding by hand is good if you are weeding around other plants, or if you want the plant gone immediately. Its also good if you feel like tearing something to shreds. It does require a bit of time and muscle, but think of it as a good workout.

Weeding by hand is instant gratification. The weed is now gone, and depending on how much of the roots were removed, will not return to pester you again. Don’t worry though. Another one will pop up somewhere to laugh at you soon.

PURSLANE AT THE DRIVEWAY MARKET

Happy Friday, farmer friends! Have we got a treat for you today. A super healthy treat.

America’s hottest superfood is purslane. Like the hipster it is, this weed is invading a farmers market near you. This plant has EVERYTHING- more omega-3 fatty acids than any other veggie, the eicosapentaenoic acid of a fishy, all the vitamins, minerals, and a bunch of antioxidants to keep your body running errands around town in workout clothes. And if that isn’t enough for you, its also classified as a noxious weed.

We had to get our hands on this stuff, so we took 3 steps out our front door, and turned towards the closest market. Only the most fresh and local for us.

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Thank goodness we remembered our reusable bags. We chose to proclaim our Austin-ness with the free SXSW tote bag. We keep it weird by sporting a bag that 50,000 other people also have.

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After a short walk, we arrived at the Driveway Market, which is even closer than the Garden Market. We chose the freshest bunch of purslane we could find that wasn’t flattened by tire tracks, so we could be sure to reap all those good health benefits.

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We filled up our reusable tote with superfood, and headed home.

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Now comes the part of consuming vegetables without juicing them. Enjoy purslane: in a salad with flax chive dressing, with salsa verde and tortillas (everything tastes better with tortillas), in tomato and cucumber salad, and mushed up in pesto.

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Doesn’t get more local than that. Enjoy your super weeds.

 

GREEN BEAN HARVEST

Don’t know about you, but our green bean harvest is out of control this year. We almost needed a ladder to get the ones at the top of the beanstalk.

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Green beans are pretty easy to harvest, but some of them are more attached than others. They will want to come inside when they are ready! #freethebeans

Stay tuned to see how we are preserving this year’s harvest!

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