Beewatching’s Blog


I’m psyched
February 16, 2010, 12:28 pm
Filed under: 1

Anticipation In a few weeks, I’ll celebrate spring by attending the home gardener workshop at Rutgers. I can hardly wait. One workshop is on “Canning Fruits and Vegetables”. I’ve read about the process of preserving produce this way, but now I’ll have a chance to ask a live person, “I can do this without poisoning my family, right?” I mean, lots of people can vegetables at home and live to tell the tale. So this summer, I’ll be scouring the farmstands for a good deal on the yummiest fruits. My mother-in-law’s pickled cherry tomato recipe is another tempting possibility.

It was hard to choose from the many workshop offerings, but I think “Do’s and Don’ts of Purchasing Plant Materials” is a good choice for me, especially considering all the nursery plants I’ve killed over the years. Then I’ll head over to “Native Trees and Shrubs of NJ”, to give our area’s pollinators their best chance of getting a good meal from my garden. Finally, I’ll learn about “Renovating and Rejuvenating Established Landscapes”, because my yard is sorely in need of a makeover. There may still be time to sign up for this one-day event. Check http://www.cpe.rutgers.edu/brochures/intros/homegardeners.html for more information.

Testing 1-2-3 I have long thought that my enclosed front porch would function as a big cold frame, so this week, I’m getting together some containers with the lettuce seed I saved from last year and I’ll find out whether I’m right. Now if only I knew which salad greens the seeds came from! Then the waiting game begins, because the other vegetable seeds are zucchini and tomatoes, and from what I learned last year, I’m not doing them any favors by starting those seeds before late March.

What part of SQUIRREL PROOF do you not understand? There is one squirrel in my neighborhood who clearly does not learn from experience. His (her?) daily visits to the feeder yield less nourishment than the creature spends in getting it. A seed or two scored after a gymnastic exercise in which he can keep from leaning his whole weight on the perch for only a second or two, and after which he often plunges into the snow underneath, seems to be reward enough to keep him coming back. Pickings must be extremely lean this time of year in order for the bother to be worthwhile. I almost feel sorry for him, until I remember what squirrels did to the attic of our garage.

I haven’t yet hit him with the snowballs I’ve flung to discourage his return, but my appearance on the deck with a handful of snow sends him scurrying into the dogwood tree for a while. With the squirrel out of the way, the finches, chickadees, cardinals, juncos, woodpeckers and sparrows return, giving something enjoyable to watch through my new binoculars (Christmas gift from DH).

What are you watching in your garden?

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1 Comment so far
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What am I watching? Snow!

Comment by Mom




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