Weeds and bugs...ah yes, the country life!

Warm, sunny days are here and that means lots of work outside to do. With a property that was overgrown for a couple of years, trying to tame and rejuvenate the gardens is a long and arduous task!

Today is a rainy day, and so I'm able to catch up with things inside....like updating the blog for all you fans ;)

We were so thrilled to have a neighbour bring the tractor to turn over that vegetable garden that had turned to grass and weeds. It looked lovely! The boys did most of the planting, and I put together a support for the peas and planted a few rows myself. It didn't take long...the grass that was churned and chewed up by the tiller is sprouting EVERYwhere. Lesson learned! We should have skimmed the top layer off and put down new soil. Now we'll be pulling grass tufts forever to keep the garden clear. At the moment we are waiting until the planted seeds are more fully sprouted so we don't disturb anything in the process of pulling it all out.

Along comes the gift of several plant seedlings, a dozen tomato, some celery, onion and small squash. I took my lesson learned and prepared one of the other gardens the right way. I hope! I dug up every inch, shook out some useable soil and tossed the grass wad into the wheelbarrow. Then raked it all lovely, planted the seedlings and tossed in the barley hull mulch left behind by the previous owner.

Although we have a number of apple trees we splurged and bought a Honeycrisp apple tree. This is one of the favourite apples in this household so we just knew we had to plant one because they are frightfully expensive to buy in the store. It's growing nicely and leafing out beautifully so the anticipation of being able to pick honeycrisp apples one day is quite exciting!

We had a late frost this spring and this really took a toll on some of the blooming things. One lilac bush got almost no blooms at all, and the other only got blooms on one side. All but one of the flowering crabapple trees lost the blooms. The one that still bloomed was all the more special to the bees again this year. Some of the daffodil buds never got open either. But our dwarf apple trees survived and with the lovely blooms there I know we'll at least have some apples this year. And of course the lupines. They always survive and manage to bloom.

In my efforts to finish renovating Kevin's bedroom I was a little late in getting to prune the grapevines. I started to do a hard prune but only got about 6 done and then they started leafing out. So the only solution now is to snap off whatever dry stems there are and the rest I've just been trying to lift the tangled, chaotic mess up and tie it to the wires. In some cases, reattaching fallen wires first! In the course of this over several afternoons, with all the weeds and tall grass that has sprouted up amid the vines (some of which were laying on the ground and rooting in) I managed to piss off a number of residents. One afternoon resulted in a bug bite on one eyelid that swelled up by morning and left me trying to see around a drooping eyelid. On another afternoon I was stung by something right on the nose. I didn't realize at first, wiping away some blood thinking it was just a thorn. Suddenly my nose started going numb and I could feel it swelling and before I got into the house I already looked like Jimmy Durante. Yes, I do have one of those lovely hats with the netting but when you have your head in the tangled vine mess trying to untangle and lift, the netting just keeps getting caught and the whole effort becomes very unproductive. Almost done and then have to rake up all the clipped branches. At that point I'll be able to weed whack and pull out all the stray blackberries that spread into the vines. By the time it's all said and done, I'm sure I'll have acquired a few more war wounds!

A new entertainment now is watching the hummingbirds that are flocking to our feeder. For three years I had a hummingbird feeder in Ontario and never once did we get a single hummer. I put one up here that sticks to the window and within hours of having it up they were already visiting. When I'm sitting on the sofa in front of the window, I can hear this loud humming like a giant bee and there he'll be, hovering next to the feeder dipping his head in and out. Poncho has always thought the birds were interesting to watch but the hummers seem to be a special fascination. The first couple of days he would get so excited running along the back of the couch until one day, because he was looking up and not ahead, he scurried right off the edge and tumbled down to the floor. Since then he hasn't been as obsessed about watching them.  Trying to get a shot of one of these adorable little fellows is no easy task. They are so fast it's hard to capture them on camera. This is another one of those times when I wish I had a much better camera to get pictures with. The best picture I could get was actually with my phone and even then it's still pretty blurry. What I wouldn't give to have a camera with the ability to freeze the moment and zoom in close...oh what great pictures I could take!


  1. Your blog does have fans! I check here regularly to see what's new with you.

    1. You may have noticed I have added the follow by email service which will notify you when I've updated (since I'm not always really regular now) :) And if you and your wife want to take a long drive you are welcome to visit.


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