March

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A little snow we had a month ago.

March was very busy in the garden. We had a very mild and wet winter. March was very warm and windy…very windy. I wanted to get a head start in the garden and found myself outside for at least a while most every day.

I was all set to post this the last day of March and then was having computer problems.

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The forsythia blossoms fill the view from the kitchen window.

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Frida and Eartha. This has become one of Frida’s favorite spots.

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We have two broody hens so Dave built this broody box to keep them separate from the others and close to the ground for little chicks.

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I don’t have an exact count, but I think one is sitting on about nine eggs and the other is sitting on four.

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Dave was inspired by Norm of Geezer Farm and got these drip hoses and the row cover for the cabbages. He also got a timer for the hoses. Should all help with the watering and hopefully the cloth will keep away the cabbage worms.

We planted parsnips, turnips, carrots, beets and radishes here.

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Preparing these beds were part of our garden work in March. Brought these pine logs from the orchard area to define the bed and hold back the soil

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Also using logs to keep the chickens out of the barn garden. Note the branches sticking up from the fence. Also to deter the chickens since the can also fly over the fence.

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They know good things are in the barn garden and are looking in.

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Over the winter we also enlarged the compost area. The compost is starting to look good. Lots of worms!

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Here is the kitchen garden. Put in some lettuce and onions starts from Milmont nursery. Also planted some onions I started from seed and sowed lettuce, spinach, collards, chard, parsley, orach, anise and dill.

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Here are the Tom Thumb lettuce sprouts. They came up first. They form small heads of lettuce – about 3 inches if I remember correctly.

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I’ve been weeding and thinning and giving the seedlings to the broody hens.

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Inside the rounded fence are the garlic and shallots.

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Just one of many borage volunteers.

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Dug up a lot of grass and weeds to define the border. We’ve already added a rock border and will be back soon with some photos.

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Much more work to be done here. This is the front side yard. It was probably once a beautiful flower bed but with the magnolia and holly bush it was hidden from our view. It was also full of weeds among the flowers so we decided with the wonderful sloped southern exposure we’d make it a veggie bed. We moved peonies and day lilies from this bed and plan to plant our tomatoes and either melons, squash or sweet potatoes here.

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We planted these azaleas – two on each side – where the boxwoods had been. I should have taken a before photo. The boxwoods were damaged by snow falling from the roof two winters ago. The were starting to come back but were rather wonky. We decided to plant the azaleas and hope the damage done to the boxwoods were a freak accident.

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I planted two creeping thyme plants I started from seed last year and they have really taken off in this spot.

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The native bee balm has really spread as well.

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Some transplanted peonies in one of the front crescents shaped flower beds.

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Pretty violets.

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Lots of weeding needed here.

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I think these are called Bells of Ireland. From photos I could find online the bells should be more like spires. I think the warming and freezing that defines our springs around here are not good for this plant. Will have to keep an eye on it and decide whether it stays or goes.

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I think these might be Roman Dark Blue Hyacinths. I happened upon a photo that looks like them on the Old House Gardens website.

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periwinkle

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rocks for our flower bed borders.

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Beautiful now but this bush gets very overgrown over the summer. I plan to cut it back hard when the blooms have faded and maybe moving some of it to the front pasture to add some color there.

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Moved some of the sweet woodruff that was in this bed and looking like it was getting too much summer sun. There is a stump and tree roots here so it had been shaded before which is where it does well. Added some day lilies and delphiniums from Milmont.

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Digging the border for the addition of rocks.

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Love the spring green of the early willow leaves.

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A bleeding heart

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added some columbines from Milmont

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love our Virginia bluebells – just beginning to bloom

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the transplanted sweet woodruff to the left of the tulips.

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Hoping the clematis uses the sticks to climb upon. They refused the fence last year.

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False Indigo for the front bed with the statue. I think I killed the one that was in one of the back beds. Cut it back too far.

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It might like this bed more as they prefer full sun or partial shade.

We’ll see. I’m learning so much. Reading Barbara Damrosch’s A Garden Primer.

Blizzard of 2016

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Two days of drifting snow.

Near the house Dave measured 14″.

I’m sure it was more than twice that amount out in the barn garden.

Official measurement for Staunton was 22″.

Snowy Day

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Yesterday, it snowed most of the day – a pretty fluffy snow that didn’t accumulate quickly. We got about 5 inches. I went outside around 7am to let the ducks out of their house and it was the first time they didn’t rush out. I brought them food and water and they eventually ventured out of the house but stayed nearby. I’m not sure if they felt vulnerable or what. Later in the morning they left for the creek and by then the sun was out and the temperature had risen considerably. The kittens, Eartha and Smokey, were cute playing in the snow. Freda, their mom, wanted inside. I’m allergic to cats. They spend the night in the cottage with Damian and he lets them out very early. With the cold weather Freda wants back in while Damian is still sleeping so we’ve let her in the house for a few minutes to a couple of hours. On my bed is a big no, no so she didn’t stay there long. I’d love to have her in the house so it is hard to say no to her but we must. Anyway, her job is outside hunting moles.

Extremely cold temps – like below zero – are expected soon. Possibly more snow this weekend. We have a toasty fire going in the wood stove, the freezer is full, I have a baby quilt to make and some good books to read. I’m ready!