right now

right now

Mar 9, 2012

Freaky Friday

That's what I'll call this post of random stuff that was in my camera and in my head!

**P.S. warning -  there is a photo of a mummified animal corpse below!

How awesome is this?  Loch made me some rosemary soap at one of his Garden Club meetings, probably the one when the "goat lady" visited -

Heard in the kitchen this week: "Mom, come read the tag on my shirt...."

you would have to look really hard as it's the back side of the tag LOL.... clever :)

Below, this one is for Thomas!  Here is a stand of Artichokes outside a local coffee shop down at the beach - perennial indeed!  Look at that thing already, it's only March.  Growing in just about pure sand also... I'm thinking sometimes we fuss too much and should just let Mother Nature step in!

Okay, here's the yucky photo...
Who needs a cat?  Look what the Jack Russell mix drug in...

Ugh, Sprocket drug this thing UP the back steps to the deck (it's almost as big as she is) and stood there all proud of herself.  What IS THAT THING?!!!  It has an elongated head so I was thinking opossum, but hubby got up close and said it had rabbit teeth LOL... it's MUMMIFIED!  I screamed when I saw it and Marley "the smart one" just looked at me as if to say "I told you I wanted sheep, not a Jack Russell mix puppy, now do you understand why?"

The moon last night...

Just for fun...
Can you find Finnegan?

Bored one rainy night, we headed out to a local furniture store just to look around and waste time and stumbled upon this monstrosity!  I swear it's as big as our house.  This must be the Duggar/Kate Plus 8 model.

More rainy days ahead, temps dropped from a high early this morning in the 60's to down in the 40's, damp, windy, rainy weekend in the forecast.  Just for fun we are headed to the "RV Show" tonight, the kids love looking at the campers and I admit we do too, even though we are die hard tent campers :)  The rest of the weekend will involve Cub Scout Pinewood Derby and fixing some things around the house.  Hopefully repotting seedlings too.  Hope you all have a great weekend!

Mar 6, 2012

2012 Seed Flats

The early seeds were started in flats on 2-23-12 this year, which is the same time I start things every year here.  I used to do some at the end of January also but found that the later February starts actually were much healthier and caught up and surpassed the early plants' growth in a matter of days, so I no longer get crazy in January!

My favorite stage below- having personal experience with infertility and the numerous tests we always anxiously awaited results on - this point where the little cotyledon pops up is so exciting!

It has taken me many years to overcome the pangs of guilt as I "cull" the extras...

I can deal with it now, but I still can't bear to plant fewer seeds - maybe it's that infertility thing again that makes me hedge my bets and plant several in each cell!  Do you still have those feelings of guilt pulling out seedlings so that others have room to grow?

I have added several new varieties of tomatoes and peppers this year, and so far everything is going well.  The 2nd set of leaves is now appearing on many of them.  This was taken this morning - 

Egads... I'm terrible with those tiny herb seeds.  I never use tweezers or anything, just sprinkle liberally LOL!  It shows :)

I mentioned this year that most all my new seeds came from Southern Exposure, I'm very excited to try some of these varieties that are historic varieties for our area & climate.  I am really hoping blight will leave us alone this year so I can accurately judge if the new tomato varieties really perform better in our Virginia climate.  With the exception of the 4th of July Hybrid tomato (I still have leftover seed), all of these peppers and tomatoes and most all herbs are non-GMO, organic, heirloom seed.

  • 3 - Red Currant (tiny, berry like)
  • 6 - Pink Brimmer (large)
  • 9 - Old Virginia (large)
  • 9 - Virginia Select Roma (Roma/paste)
  • 9 - Brandywine  (large - massive!)
  • 3 - Hillbilly (large)
  • 4 - Orange Wellington (medium-large)
  • 2 - Fourth of July (small-med salad type)

*notes from last year: Brandywine was still the #1 performer here in taste, quantity, and size, remains the bulk of my canning, apparently really likes humid coastal VA.  Amish Paste and Yellow Pear were disappointing in 2011.  Amish Paste were extremely susceptible to late blight but Pink Brandywine took all the blight in stride and kept producing 1.5 lb fruit in spite of it.  *Seed of Brandywine are also going on their 5th year in the "seed binder" with 100% germination - they were purchased from Baker Creek!


  • 2 - Trinidad Spice (hot)
  • 1 - Padron Tanas  (hot)
  • 3 - Pepperoncini   (hot/sweet)
  • 1 - Sigaretta diBergamo  (mild)
  • 9 - Jalapeño Craig's Grande  (hot)
  • 3 - Quadrato d'Asti Rosso  (sweet)
  • 6 - Jimmy Nardello Frying Pepper  (sweet)
  • 2 - Sweet Yellow Stuffing  (sweet)
  • 6 - Charleston Belle  (sweet)

no special notes here, peppers do well in our hot, humid summers with no diseases or insect issues

  • 2 - Purple Rain

Note: blech, why do I still grow this?  Oh yeah, they are pretty!  They also lure all the bad bugs away from the potatoes.

  • Oregano
  • Marjoram
  • Summer Savory
  • Lettuce Basil
  • Summerlong Basil
  • Purple Ruffles Basil
  • Thyme
Notes: No parsley seeds needed this year, it has self seeded over 100 plants in the garden and gravel perennial beds so far this spring.  Basil continues to be a problem here, it bolts very early so I am going to go ahead and add a hybrid this year called "Summerlong" that is supposed to keep going in the extreme heat.  I'll let you know...

  • Pumpkin on a Stick Ornamental Eggplant
  • Cotton
  • Zinnia
  • Marigold
Note:  If you are looking for a fantastic fall combo, cotton and the pumpkin on a stick look great together in a vase!  They are dried also so they last!

**Also started many varieties of lettuces and scallions just for a few jump start plants - these are the same varieties as I listed last week that I also direct seeded outdoors.

I know you were rolling your eyes when you saw all those Jalapeños again... before you say it I'll tell you we have already used ALL the canned/pickled ones!  So although 50+ lbs looks and seems pretty ridiculous every summer, we need them all!  Remind me of that when I start complaining the end of July...

gotta run... it's Super Tuesday and time for me to vote!

Mar 5, 2012


I am excited to say I have finally freshened up the blog with a new look.  I've been meaning to do this for the past 4 months or so but other things always managed to take a priority.  Gone are the unseasonable but welcome temps of 80º, replaced with wind, cold and rain - made for a blog updating kind of day yesterday.

That header photo is huge, I can't seem to shrink it down so I'll just have to live with it for awhile.  For anyone wondering, those sunflowers are "Autumn Beauty", they grew to be about 6 feet and have multiple flowers per stalk and indeed were Autumn Beauties, as this photo was taken in October.

I have changed a few things around on the sidebar, and hopefully will have more links of interest in the upcoming months.  Some of you may know that I am somewhat of a closet "prepper" and so I have decided to link one of the neatest prepper sites I know of, as the author is a woman!  Her radio show is linked as well as her website under the "Prepper Blogs" on the sidebar.  The Survival Mom is a very cool site - her blog, numerous links, forums, information in an easy to navigate page.  Food storage and outdoor survival are big interests of mine that you may not know about, but her page is full of common sense stuff that applies to the home as well such as pantries, storm prep and finances.  She also has a book coming out next week that I just pre-ordered and I hope to give it a review after I read it.
*Note, in no way am I doing ads or anything on my blog, I just hope to share yet another interest of mine and link helpful info for anyone else out there interested.  This girl does not live by gardening alone :)

Please let me know if there are any comment box issues I have - I know a lot of us are dealing with this but I had no option pop up to disable the word jumble so I'm wondering how the box appears to you, and if you are seeing the 'subscribe to email' button?  I have noticed on many other blogs I no longer have the option of 'subscribing to comments' which makes it frustrating when I want to see what others are saying or your replies on your blogs.  Blogger growing pains, ugh!

I am hoping to get that seed/varieties post up soon, but now I'm off to work on Cub Scout stuff...