Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
On closer inspection, it was FULL of nesting white herons (egrets?)! Can you spot the mother feeding her baby in the middle of this picture?
Saturday, April 25, 2009
While draping the netting, I noticed THIS on the deck:
Friday, April 24, 2009
This week's tip:We have three indoor pets, including a long-haired cat. They have a lot of hair to shed and brush. Did you know you can compost pet hair? A few more surprising compost ingredients: hair from your brush, dust bunnies and dryer lint. What surprising things do you compost?
Everyone else: Thanks for playing! Please visit Kim and Victoria in a few days and see what Bilbo finds to get into in Idaho!
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
And here he is with me! Where will he be off to next? Your house? If you want a shot at being Bilbo's next host, leave a comment! The only requirements are that you must have a blog and you must follow Dirt Princess' rules below. I'll draw a name on Friday at 1:00 PM. I'll post the result here, so be sure to check back!
#1) COPY & PASTE these rules into your post on Bilbo if you receive him. The post must be titled WHERE IN THE WORLD IS BILBO: (your city). If everyone copies the rules, then the person you send it to will know what to do. If each post is titled the same, we can keep track of Bilbo and follow him on his adventure. PLEASE do not forget to copy and paste these rules into your post if you receive Bilbo.
#2) In order to participate you MUST leave a comment on the post about Bilbo with the blogger that has him. That blogger will draw names from the people who left comments on that post. Once the winner is selected Bilbo will be on his way to see your garden.
#3) When you receive Bilbo please take a photo (or photos) of him in your garden as well as a photo of yourself with Bilbo.
#4) Rules are linked to http://northmobilegardensociety.blogspot.com/ . Please leave a comment on The Dirt Princess' page so she can keep track of him and let other bloggers know where Bilbo is, and post where bloggers can see his latest travel.
#5) Please try to get Bilbo out the door as quickly as you possibly can. If at all possible please try not to keep him more than 7 days. We want to get him to as many places as we can in 6 months.
#6) Bilbo will travel for 6 months, April 21, 2009- October 21, 2009. If you have Bilbo at the end of this 6 month time frame, you will ship him back to the Dirt Princess at http://northmobilegardensociety.blogspot.com/.
#7) When Bilbo arrives back with the Dirt Princess, there will be a great post letting everyone know where Bilbo has been, when he visited as well as links to the bloggers posts that had Bilbo.
#8) There will be a list enclosed with Bilbo for each blogger to sign once they receive Bilbo. That list will be sent back to the Dirt Princess.
#9) Should anyone have any questions please contact Dirt Princess at
#10) The blogger that is has possession of Bilbo is responsible for shipping him to the next blogger. Please handle him with care. He is ceramic.
#11) Bilbo may be shipped to countries outside the United States. We want everyone to join in on the fun!
#12) If you would like to throw in a little something with Bilbo to ship the next blogger, please feel free. Add to the excitement. See what Bilbo brings you when he arrives at your door step.
Have fun and DON'T forget to copy the rules into your post when you receive Bilbo.
Happy Earth Day 2009! For Earth Day this year, we planted a pink dogwood. Scott dug the hole just as deep and twice as wide as the container the tree came in. Then we mixed in some compost with the native soil, loosened the root ball, planted and mulched the tree. We even took the grass Scott dug up to make the hole for the tree and replanted it in a bare spot in the lawn.
This is a good day to celebrate what you do that's good for the Earth, and make a list of things you would like to do better. There is a fantastic article in this month's National Wildlife Federation magazine called "How Green is Your Garden?" We all know that planting drought-tolerant, native species is good, and chemical fertilizers are bad. This article goes much further, and I highly recommend it if you can get your hands on the magazine.
Ten things we do (or don't do) that make the Earth happy:
- We compost or recycle almost all of our "trash"
- We mulch to conserve water
- We use fallen limbs for plant supports
- The only chemical I use in the yard or garden is Roundup for Poison Ivy/Oak
- I use integrated pest management in the garden
- We provide food, water and shelter for birds
- We buy recycled toilet paper and paper towels
- We unplug the toaster when it's not in use
- I'm a vegetarian (I know the effects of meat production on the environment are controversial, and I'm not looking for a fight. My main reason for being a veg is that I love animals and don't want to eat them!)
- We have low-flow showerheads (and they are actually awesome!)
Six (of many) things I need to work on:
- Buying locally-grown produce/supporting local farmers
- Easy energy conservation: installing more weather-stripping, unplugging more things that aren't being regularly used ("energy vampires")
- Being responsible with my plant choices. Not-so-angry-redhead had a great post about responsible tree choices recently.
- Conserving water
- Tending my compost piles more, so I'll get more compost and have to buy fewer soil amendments
- Generally consuming less (when it comes to gardening, but also in general). This was a big part of the NWF article. I am going to make a concerted effort to buy good quality gardening tools that won't need to be replaced as often, and use found items or other things I already have when possible.
What do you already do or plan to do that makes Earth happy?
Monday, April 20, 2009
Sunday, April 19, 2009
They appear to be relatively healthy, and I haven't replaced them yet because every year I think they'll bloom. Today I was inspecting one and found TWO creepy mystery growths!
Creepy Mystery Growth #2:
I went to the Master Gardeners' spring plant sale on Saturday and came home with a lot of plants:
- Four hostas, two each labeled "green early blooming" and "green late blooming"
- Two unknown clematis
- Mexican petunia for my mother-in-law (though she may have to grow it as an annual)
- Three red verbena
- Two rose campion
- Two naked ladies
- Two diamond frost euphorbia
- Firecracker vine (which I had never heard of)
- Angel trumpet (no idea what color)
- Red flowering quince
The really awesome thing is that I got all this for $34!!! It's kind of fun having no clue what kind(s) of clematis or what color angel trumpet I now have -- but if you have a real color-coordinated kind of garden, that risk might not be worth the reward (the price)!
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
For what it's worth, I imagine the flakes work better than cayenne because they are bigger and will last longer.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Our family has an Easter egg decorating contest every year. Here is my entry from this year:
The really dedicated egg decorators (read: me and Scott) poke a hole in each end of a real egg and blow out the contents (save the innards for scrambled eggs!). This way the decorated egg can last for years!
Here is Scott's AWESOME entry for this year: "Humpty Dumpty, before and after"
Here is my ET from about 5 years ago:
Some of Scott's past eggs:
Friday, April 10, 2009
The beach is small, but peaceful and well-maintained. It was a little surreal to have my toes in the sand at 7 am and be back at work on the 10th floor at 1:30 pm.
The many ferns around the property looked so healthy!