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Separating Native Plants
I reassess my native plants and redistribute the wealth.
September 3, 2016

This weekend we finally had some cooler weather, so I decided to tear into the raised garden boxes in our backyard.  They were long overdue for some plant division.  When we first started planting these boxes, my idea was to fill them with bulbs for spring, and herbs, perennials, and annuals for the rest of the time.  Then Drew introduced me to the idea of planting cultivated wild flowers for our area.  I latched on to this idea because I love the untamed look of wildflowers, plus the potential to help our native species birds and insects.

We found a reputable online resource for purchasing native flowers called Prairie Moon.  They have a fantastic website and catalog with a map of the US showing native plants that grow in the different regions.  Prairie Moon has already done the hard work of having searched and found many of the extirpated varieties of plants, and regrown them to a more commercial capacity.  We did our research and purchased some plants, bare roots, and seeds that were native to our area.  They have been beautiful for the first two years, and they have really drawn in wildlife that I have never seen before.  It’s opened many new opportunities for garden enjoyment, but at the same time, they are vigorous growers, and some were poorly placed in my little boxes, like the Obedient Plant, which grew too tall and spread a little too vigorously.  Now in the third year, it is time for some revision.

The first step in the revamp was to tear out the old rotted wood and replace it with new treated lumber to avoid future rot.  Then I dug up every plant and spring bulb.  I divided the perennials and put the bulbs in paper bags, so I can replant them later in the fall.  I removed anything that would grow over 2 feet tall to the outer fence rows, where they can spread and flourish without hindrance.  A word of advice if you choose the cultivated wild flower method, think about the space you have to work with.  Think about height and spreading habit, or you may become disenchanted with them.  If you can grow them properly the first time, you will be more likely to keep up the habit, which is not only good for the environment, but can be extremely beautiful when done correctly.

No matter what sort of flower garden you choose to grow, you will love the bonus that arrives in the form of native insects, butterflies, and bees—our native pollinators.  It’s one of life’s simple pleasures to watch them work.

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January 1, 2017

Between Christmas and New Year's Eve I remain busy, but New Year's doesn't really feel like a new year changing to me.

December 25, 2016

We celebrate Christmas Eve and I find time to rust tin snowflakes for gifts.

December 17, 2016

We keep up the Christmas card tradition, deal with icy runs, winterize the cement benches, and enjoy the babies' new eggs.

December 10, 2016

We finally learn the secret to citrus tree success and start the Christmas season with good will.

December 3, 2016

I try my hand at bakery quality spritz cookies, and end the busy week with Marty's birthday.

November 26, 2016

My busy week begins with Meg's birthday and includes Thanksgiving and a Christmas turnover.

November 19, 2016

Unseasonable weather occurs while I prepare to shut down the garden

October 31, 2016

We have our traditional Halloween bash, while winterizing the garden and helping build onto a barn.

October 8, 2016

I discuss rearranging cheap bouquets to maximum effect, and we start work on a project dear to my heart.

October 1, 2016

The unseasonably long growing season is making me reconsider how I winterize my garden.

September 26, 2016

Bulb and new roses arrive, while Marty and I finish some projects.

September 3, 2016

I reassess my native plants and redistribute the wealth.

August 27, 2016

I repaint our living room rug, raspberries come off the vine, and butterflies fly all around

August 20, 2016

I briefly discuss canning tomatoes, meanwhile, the sheep and I encounter a baby rabbit rummaging around the willow tree.

August 13, 2016

I discuss my tips for cost efficient sidewalk repair, meanwhile, Marty makes a bench.

July 23, 2016

The baby chicks become mini acrobats. We get a bumper crop of peaches, make some basil olive oil, and gather fresh garden carrots

July 16, 2016

We work on upgrading an old flowerbed to a more colonial look.

June 27, 2016

I celebrate my birthday with a new batch of baby chicks.

June 18, 2016

We get the sheep some hay and I begin harvesting our cherry trees.

June 4, 2016

I discuss old fashioned roses, close the greenhouse, and inspect the orchard for spring damage.

May 14, 2016

I give everything a fresh coat of white paint, and the kids give me a lovely Mother's Day tea.

March 12, 2016

Marty and I give the pool fence a colonial look with chinoiserie inspiration.

March 5, 2016

I prepare for the next season while encountering some problems with my seedlings. This year may be a trouble year.

February 27, 2016

We celebrate President's Day, while I turn some old baskets into new Easter decorations.

February 20, 2016

We celebrate St. Valentine's Day and take stock of a rat problem.

February 13, 2016

Planting annual flowers, tomatoes, and peppers. Plus, I begin decorating the mudroom.

February 6, 2016

The sheep are done with winter, while I put up decorations for February.

January 30, 2016

The last round of seeds arrive and I get started sewing some new yard outfits and repairing my old egg wreaths.

January 23, 2016

After a hectic week, I begin making rag rugs for the kitchen, an easy craft that will be easy to clean.

January 1, 2017

Between Christmas and New Year's Eve I remain busy, but New Year's doesn't really feel like a new year changing to me.

December 25, 2016

We celebrate Christmas Eve and I find time to rust tin snowflakes for gifts.

December 17, 2016

We keep up the Christmas card tradition, deal with icy runs, winterize the cement benches, and enjoy the babies' new eggs.

December 10, 2016

We finally learn the secret to citrus tree success and start the Christmas season with good will.

December 3, 2016

I try my hand at bakery quality spritz cookies, and end the busy week with Marty's birthday.

November 26, 2016

My busy week begins with Meg's birthday and includes Thanksgiving and a Christmas turnover.

November 19, 2016

Unseasonable weather occurs while I prepare to shut down the garden

October 31, 2016

We have our traditional Halloween bash, while winterizing the garden and helping build onto a barn.

October 8, 2016

I discuss rearranging cheap bouquets to maximum effect, and we start work on a project dear to my heart.

October 1, 2016

The unseasonably long growing season is making me reconsider how I winterize my garden.

September 26, 2016

Bulb and new roses arrive, while Marty and I finish some projects.

September 3, 2016

I reassess my native plants and redistribute the wealth.

August 27, 2016

I repaint our living room rug, raspberries come off the vine, and butterflies fly all around

August 20, 2016

I briefly discuss canning tomatoes, meanwhile, the sheep and I encounter a baby rabbit rummaging around the willow tree.

August 13, 2016

I discuss my tips for cost efficient sidewalk repair, meanwhile, Marty makes a bench.

July 23, 2016

The baby chicks become mini acrobats. We get a bumper crop of peaches, make some basil olive oil, and gather fresh garden carrots

July 16, 2016

We work on upgrading an old flowerbed to a more colonial look.

June 27, 2016

I celebrate my birthday with a new batch of baby chicks.

June 18, 2016

We get the sheep some hay and I begin harvesting our cherry trees.

June 4, 2016

I discuss old fashioned roses, close the greenhouse, and inspect the orchard for spring damage.

May 14, 2016

I give everything a fresh coat of white paint, and the kids give me a lovely Mother's Day tea.

March 12, 2016

Marty and I give the pool fence a colonial look with chinoiserie inspiration.

March 5, 2016

I prepare for the next season while encountering some problems with my seedlings. This year may be a trouble year.

February 27, 2016

We celebrate President's Day, while I turn some old baskets into new Easter decorations.

February 20, 2016

We celebrate St. Valentine's Day and take stock of a rat problem.

February 13, 2016

Planting annual flowers, tomatoes, and peppers. Plus, I begin decorating the mudroom.

February 6, 2016

The sheep are done with winter, while I put up decorations for February.

January 30, 2016

The last round of seeds arrive and I get started sewing some new yard outfits and repairing my old egg wreaths.

January 23, 2016

After a hectic week, I begin making rag rugs for the kitchen, an easy craft that will be easy to clean.