Sorting out the Garden Pond

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Posted by jasdfgh | Posted in Design, Features | Posted on 24-09-2013

garden-pond

Hi everyone – and welcome back to my gardening blog. (Thanks for visiting – my mom brought me and my sisters up to be polite, so I think it’s only fair that I say thanks for dropping by.)

 

As you’ll know if you read my ‘about’ page, I’m new to this whole gardening lark. I’ve been wanting to make the most of our garden for a long time so I started up this blog as a kind of gardening diary. Writing a blog makes me do research so it’s really useful for my garden too.

 

Time for the Pond

 

We’ve got a pond in our garden, but it’s been a bit neglected. I had fenced it off a few years ago because I was worried about the kids – you read such terrible things about kids falling into ponds and drowning, and they can drown in such tiny amounts of water too – but now they are a bit more grown-up and safety-aware, I think it’s time to reveal the pond in its full glory!!

 

The thing is, the pond is looking a bit – well, icky really. I did some research and I discovered we’ve got pond blanket weed. Urgh! Luckily for us, it is only around the edge of the pond where the water is more shallow, but I need to do something about it quickly to stop it spreading as it could end up everywhere – even at the bottom of the pond too!

 

Removing Blanket Weed

 

The advice I read about how to remove blanket weed was that you should remove as much of the weed by hand as possible before starting on any kind of chemical treatment, so it looks as if I’ll need to pull on hubby’s waders and get stuck in. I’ll need to rake over the pond, then lift the rake up. If the blanket weed is attached, I’ve got to slowly twist the rake and pull it out. I’ll need to do this daily until the weed is under control.

 

Eventually, I’d like to put fish in the pond. My hubbie is desperate for fish as he really likes them. I think he finds it soothing watching them swimming round and round, and the kids say they would like fish too. I think it would be good for them as a project. I’d make them responsible for feeding the fish every day.

 

The advice I read about how to remove blanket weed also said there are certain fish you can add to your pond which will eat blanket weed – such as grass carp, so that sounds like a good idea. I don’t really like the idea of having to use strong chemicals on my pond to remove blanket weed, but if I’ve got fish in there that can do it for me – brilliant!

 

Is there anyone reading this who’s had the same problem with their pond? If so, I’d love it if you could give me advice on how to deal with it and how long it took you to get rid of blanket weed. Thanks in advance!

I’ve Planted My Onions!

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Posted by jasdfgh | Posted in Vegetables | Posted on 24-09-2013

onion

Hey everyone – did you have a good weekend? The weather forecasters in our area got the forecast wrong – which was great, because I was expecting rain and it didn’t come. It meant me, hubbie and the kids got to sit out in the garden all day Saturday and all day Sunday.

 

Actually hubbie was the only one who sat out (typical!). I planted stuff and the kids ran about like crazy, wild things, which was great because they went off to bed at 8pm on Saturday night (and actually requested that they go to bed!!) and hubbie and I got to have a glass of wine outside. I’m lovin’ our garden life

 

To keep you up to date, I planted radishes, kale and onions this weekend. I think the onions are going to come in really useful. I mean, what dish do you make that doesn’t include onions?? I use them in soups, for stews and casseroles, on top of burgers and steaks – you get the picture.

 

My old Uncle Jim actually likes to eat onions raw, like an apple you know? I’m not so keen on them raw (your mouth tastes like garbage for days afterwards…), but Uncle Jim swears he hasn’t had a cold in 20 years and he says it’s because he eats a raw onion a day every day.

 

I researched lots of tips and advice on planting onions, as I do really want mine to work. I’m growing my onions from sets (or bulbs) rather than seeds, as apparently that is easier for beginners – and I’m definitely a gardening newbie. Onion sets need less soil and less soil fertility, and they don’t get attacked by mildew.

 

Whilst I’m growing them, I’ve got to weed the onion beds regularly, and I should feed them with liquid fertiliser and water them when the ground is dry. I also need to cut off any flower stems which appear, as the onion plant should be using its energy to grow the bulb and not the flower.

 

OK – it sounds sorta straightforward and I’m really hoping it will produce great results. I read up about the soil in my area and it says that we have really good, rich soil which is great  for growing veggies.

 

If any of you reading this blog are good gardeners, I’d really love it if you could give me any advice about onions – oh, and kale and radishes too!

 

What should I plant during fall?

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Posted by jasdfgh | Posted in Vegetables | Posted on 11-09-2013

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veg-gardening-fall

Hey everyone – I have a question to ask. Do you consider yourself green-fingered? I ask because I’m writing this blog about gardening and before recently, I didn’t think I was green-fingered at all and now I really, really want to be.

 

As you can imagine, I’ve been Googling like a crazy woman so what I researched this week was – what to plant during fall. I started out my garden because I wanted it to look nice, adding in wrought iron railings and looking at different plants, including lilies. But then I thought, hey what about some food? I don’t about you, but our family’s food bills are kinda crazy frightening these days. I also like the idea of me as Earth Momma feeding the kids stuff I’ve grown and knowing it doesn’t have all those chemical nasties in it.

 

So, according to the wonderful world wide web, during Fall there’s quite a few veggies I can plant which I’ll be able to harvest in a few weeks. I don’t know about you, but I love veggies. My best friend Julie, who is an awesome cook, makes incredible veggies dishes (she’s a lifelong vegetarian, which is cool, but I love steak too much…). Maybe once my veggies have grown, she can have some in exchange for making some delicious veggie dishes for hubbie, kids and me!

 

raddishSo, what can I grow – I can grow radishes. I’ve got to get them in three to six weeks before the frost starts and they need to be planted about an inch apart. Maybe this could be a project for the kids? That way, they’ll be more likely to eat them…

 

lettuceOr I could grow head lettuces. These need to be planted about 8 inches apart and half-an-inch deep, and they should be watered every five to ten days. I guess it should be easy to tell when they are ready as I’ll be able to see them.

 

I keep reading about what a super food kale is and that all the super models/actresses eat it, so perhaps I should concentrate on kale? Kale, apparently, needs soil temperature of between 40-70 degrees F, and the seeds should be planted half-inch deep and 12-15 inches apart. You can pick the plant about 70-95 days after sewing. [Hubbie just looked over my shoulder there and went – “Bleurgh, there's no way I'm eating kale!” Honestly, what a terrible example to set our kids!]

 

Onions too could be a go-er (or should that be grow-er?!). The advice online says you should plant them if you live in an area which has a mild fall/winter – yippee, that’s me! – and it’s much easier to grow them from sets or mini-bulb than seed. I would need to plant them about an inch deep and 3-5 inches apart, and I can pick them when their tops fall over.

 

Well, there’s plenty to think about and get on with. Just think, if I got all of this good stuff planted we could be eating our produce in time for Thanksgiving.

Iron Railings or open plan? Dilemma!!!

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Posted by jasdfgh | Posted in Design | Posted on 02-09-2013

iron-garden-railings

Hope you are enjoying the blog so far, I am well into my garden design now and I am faced with another dilemma. As I sit here on my brand new Artificial lawn I must add!. My husband has been nagging me about the wall that runs along our patio area which raises up to the top level of the garden. I personally wanted to leave it as it is, but my husband suggested that Iron railings would be much safer for the Kids and would also look good too. I have been browsing around and there are some really nice wrought Iron railings about. I didn’t realise just how many different designs there were!

Considering I was totally against it I now think a small low level railing would look pretty good. It would also match the Iron gate which we have that separates the driveway to the garden. I really don’t know anything about garden railings so I searched Google and found ADgates. They actually came out and measured the wall and made the railings exactly how I wanted them. They also fitted them to which was great.

Now I have yet another feature in my garden and the bill keeps adding up! but I don’t care – I want  a nice garden!

Now I have the main features in its time to start learning a little more about plants and its time I started planting some!! So the next few posts will be about different plants. Hopefully we can learn something along the way.