Monday, November 3, 2014

Winter gardening begins

There is one small problem with working at a garden shop. They give me a paycheck and I give it right back to them! Working continues to be fun and interesting and I look forward to the days I work. How could it get any better?!  Yesterday, I brought some pots home and repotted some plants. I potted Wesley's bamboo, it's been living in a jar of water far too long. 

This kitchen table! If it could talk! I have used it for sewing projects, school projects, soap making, when I was making pottery in my kitchen it held my ware boards, and then my finished work, I have used it for photographing work, and now potting plants. We even eat all of our meals here! I bought this table years ago, before Wes was born, at an English antiques store up near Boone. I paid a good bit for it, but knew it would serve us well, and it will probably be the only table we ever own. It has marks from where Wesley used to pound her fork,many scratches, and even a spot where I carved my name one night after too many beers. I later was able to sand it out thank goodness, haha! Many great meals and conversations at this table..... Good memories.

Back to gardening topics......

I am learning so much about soil and fertilizers, organic gardening, fermenting foods,beer making, hydroponics, indoor plants, outdoor plants, cheese making..... There's a whole world out there that I have just been skimming!  As I have said in previous posts, it's all about the learning for me.

I have begun the process of bringng in plants for winter. We had a freeze warning last night so everything got covered in our garden with agribon fabric and the rest came in. At work, we also started bringing in and editing. Orphan angel wing begonias that were going to get tossed in the trash came home with me for a second chance at life. I can propagate the ones that look like they might not make it, but I'm going to try to get them through the winter. For me there is nothing better than rooting plants and being successful. I see a greenhouse in my future.... My grandmother could stick any old leaf in some soil and make a beautiful plant. I seem to have her gift and most times I have success with it. I cloned her Christmas cactus and I now have several very nice plants. I have had the cactus for thirty years, God knows how long she had it before me. Now Wesley has one of the babies. So fantastic, the life of plants! I am thinking that I might like to get back to my pottery studio and make some pots for my new acquisitions.......

Gerry's winter garden is coming along nicely, even though we do suffer from lack of full sun, he has managed to get some lettuces and leafy greens up and looking strong. For his birthday, I got him this Japanese  Hori Hori knife. If you garden and you don't have one, I must insist that you go and get yourself one right away! It is the greatest garden tool I have ever seen! 

I have been learning about nutrients for organic gardening and I talked Gerry into trying one of General Organicss packages for growing. It's even a vegan program, so there's a nod to Wesley! Lots of good things for the plants. I think if you are going to go to the trouble to grow your own food, you should grow the best food you can, and plants need nutrition just like we do. They are living things and it's hard work producing those fruits.

Long long ago, when Gerry and I were just mere babes, we had a garden. I don't think we were even married yet. We chopped up some soil, made some rows and stuck some seeds in the ground. Things came up! We were so proud of ourselves. Then the beetles and bugs came and like good gardeners of the 1980's we went to the garden shop and bought a box of sevin dust, put masks and gloves on and poured that toxic white powder on every green thing in the garden. Thankfully we have evolved and we now have some sense! 

There has been no making, just reading and learning. I want to get some soaps made, but already my week is filling up with things that need to get done. So nice to have a full life. I'm grateful to have a curious mind. I don't envy those that have no hobbies other than making money.... I do sometimes envy the money, but it passes pretty quickly :-)


Dennis Allen said...

Container gardening always looks interesting but how do you get the mule in there when it's time to plow?

Carol said...

Hello Tracey: I also work at a garden center/nursery (but it's seasonal, so I'm not back to work until March) and I know exactly what you mean re: the paycheck!

Money is tight, but with work that I love, life is good. And I'm getting a lot (too many?) knitted hat orders after my post about the winter market on my blog and FB.

Have a wonderful week!

littlemancat said...

Love your table's story - all those activities of creating. And so happy to see how much you're learning and enjoying life these days. Beautiful. I know what you mean about learning new things - in the creative department, anyway. We air signs get it -:-)!

June Perry said...

Tracey, agree whole heartedly with the Hori knife kudos. I've had mine for several years and I recommend it to everyone. I can plant, weed, and it's also great when dividing perennials like day lilies, hostas, etc.
I laughed out loud with your first sentence, because I could so relate!
It's wonderful that you are learning so much. Sounds like you picked the right job. I've been transplanting some basil cutting I rooted in water, and doing a little bit of seed savings; but today will be mainly for soap making.I didn't plant a winter garden this year (too pooped from caring for two gardens the past seven months). Hopefully I'll have some decent soap made before we get the first freeze and I have to put the garden to bed for winter.

Sandy miller said...

man I should post pictures of my hori's! Forgot what they look like new! Don't think I could garden without it.
Life sounds great for you, this gardening thing is never ending! I have a library of books and still have so much to learn after 50 years….. a lot like glazing :)
Have decided to let our gardens and gardener rest for the winter months this year. I'll let ya know how that works out. I think I'm gonna be pretty cranky come January :)
Great post….. it's the journey!!

Tracey Broome said...

Hey Dennis, I'm afraid the mule would be me, haha!
Hey Carol, my feeling is that no matter how much money you have, it's all relative and you always need more, somehow. I would rather have my family and my friends.
Hey Mary, Yep our table could tell some stories. I got it when Wesley was born, it's the only table she has ever known, one day when I am long gone she will have all those memories when she sits down to eat. What a great thing to be able to pass on to her.
June, this is our first year for a winter garden and it's more of a learning experience, we certainly won't get a big yield, but we will learn a lot!
Sandy, would love to see those hori photos! It's interesting how much gardening and pottery have in common, maybe that's why so many potters have gardens.

Michèle Hastings said...

Jeff went to a Korean hardware store, on his first trip there, and bought a couple of garden tools and a meat cleaver. I think we need a Hori knife too!

We are both getting anxious about buying our own place so that we can have a real garden. Since we are renting we don't really want to put the time into digging up a larger area.

June Perry said...

I used heavy duty remay in my winter garden last fall and we had fresh lettuce to almost the New Year. And the kale and a few others made it through the whole winter even when it went 7 below zero. Here's a list of veggies you can grow in just 3-4 hrs of sunlight - salad greens like leaf lettuce, arugula, endive, cress, cabbage family (broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, radishes, chard, peas, lettuce, beans,peas, beets, radishes, spinach, mustard greens, kale, collards, and beans

Anonymous said...

I had the same paycheck problem when I worked at a bookstore. & table memories are such good things. our dining room table belonged to a dear, gone now, friend. It was her sewing table & there are needle holes along one edge, where she would line up threaded needles…

Vicki said...

Congrats on the new job Tracey! Love the energy you're getting - and sharing - from the vibe there :)
Happy gardening. It's a great thing to be in touch with the earth. I miss it.