Due to our heat and strategic rains, our seeds have just been popping out of the ground. Our main garden, which was planted first, now has lusty beans, corn, carrots, potatoes, and of course tomatoes. I just went out to check the North garden and it’s coming up fast. The corn and pumpkins/squash are up nicely and today the first beans are popping out of the ground. I couldn’t believe it! Then I drove over to the Sand garden and found we have corn coming up, along with several beans, pumpkins, and potatoes. Yea! I’ve got to get out and put a few piles of corn out, in case the ground squirrels are watching that patch. I had to replant some corn which had come up because our turkeys got into the patch and helped themselves to some. Now it’s fenced — sort of like closing the barn door after the horses have run out…

Our onions are growing nicely, along with the rest of the gardens. I Love spring!

Alisha and I worked out a nice trade. She wanted to give a few of my books to her aunt and friend and I had a couple of flower beds which were more weed beds than flower beds. So she set about and weeded the heck out of the first one yesterday. Oh my God, is it perfect! David brought home some bags of wood chips from the mill after work so now we have to get busy and mulch the daylilies.

My friend sent me a photo of some of her Lady Slipper orchids so I went out to see if I could find mine. I hunted a bit and there it was! I was afraid our bad winter might have killed the one I’ve found. But no, there it was — a bit smaller than last year, but still there.

Here’s my one Lady Slipper orchid.

We have Bluebirds in our birdhouses up at the berry patch. I stood and watched the male deftly swoop down and snatch a moth out of the air to feed his brood. They sure earn their keep! (If you’d like to build a few birdhouses to enlist Bluebirds and other helpful “flying flowers” to your yard, check out my article on making birdhouses and enlisting their help in Issue 164 or the 28th year Anthology of BHM.) I have to laugh. The Bluebirds always fly ahead of me, perch on posts, then hop up and fly away when I get too close. They are so cheerful!

Alisha and I canned up yet another big batch of asparagus yesterday. Wow, are the pantry shelves filling up nicely! We have one entire 2-foot-deep shelf full of asparagus already! Boy, do we love it. — Jackie


  1. Jackie; Glad to see David and Ashley getting the cabin put up, it is amazing how fast those bills can creep up on a person with all the required ‘civilized’ charges attached to living! It sure is nice to have family with equipment! (Dozer, Sawmill, Bobcat…) I Rented a small skid loader and auger for a day, just over $400 bucks!

    Hope everyone is doing well and healthy!
    God bless

    • I totally agree with you. I did it the hard way, having no family with equipment. Then we finally started getting a little equipment at a time and let me tell you, it makes things easier by far. But even without it, we got a lot done when I look back.

  2. Jackie, We planted the Iroquois beans and started picking in six weeks. One sixteen foot cattle panel per packet of seeds. We canned 18 pints yesterday and gave away 2 gallons, on Saturday. We love them.

    • Yep, they’re one of my very favorites! If you find you have enough canned beans, let the rest or part of the panel, dry down. They’re one of the best dry beans I’ve ever eaten!

  3. Jackie,
    Is that straw you are mulching with or is it safe to use hay? We have tons of leftover hay this year and sure would like to use it but would the hay just drop seeds?



    • We use Reed Canary grass hay, which we harvest in its immature stage, ourselves. No seeds nor are there weeds in the thick stands. My friend, Dara, uses hay as mulch, but I can’t recommend it as most hay contains both grass (such as timothy) and weed seeds which can be a real problem in your garden.

    • Usually your local food co-op or health food store carries several varieties of wheat. You can also check your local feed store as many carry food-grade wheat products. We LOVE the company, Wheat Montana in Three Forks, Montana, which used to be kind of a neighboring place to us when we lived there. (In Montana, some “neighbors” live a hundred miles apart!)

    • Yes, unfortunately, asparagus does get a bit soft when canned. But it still tastes SO good it’s very worth it to can up. (Better than winter asparagus from Mexico….)

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