I said a few weeks ago that this stay-at-home spring feels a lot like the first few months as a homeowner. A lot of this is because that was the first — and last — year that I tried starting my garden from seeds instead of purchasing seedlings from a nursery. As soon as my employer told me, in mid-March, that we’d be working remotely until at least the end of April, I thought “well … I would finally be home to water seeds!”
And so, friends, I jumped in with basically no plan. I visited the neighborhood hardware store the weekend before Minnesota’s stay-at-home order went into effect, and I grabbed a bunch of seed packets, seedling trays and a grow light. It wasn’t until a month in that I realized my grow light situation was probably only 1/10 of what the seeds really needed … like I said, no plan. But it made me feel better about giving them a try, since spring weather in Minnesota means we don’t plant outdoors until between Mother’s Day and Memorial Day.
I’m excited about the herbs and veggies for sure, but I’m especially hopeful about the perennials. Buying a packet of seeds for $3 could yield dozens of plants that otherwise cost $15 or more apiece from a garden center. I know that’s because they’re time-intensive to nurture, so we’ll see if it works out in my favor by the end of the summer. But if I can fill my side yard with bee- and butterfly-friendly flowers that will come back year after year, I’ll be happppppy.
Some of you have noticed I took a bit of a break from blogging this spring. Between work travel and some family things to attend to, I really haven’t been home — much less, cooking, crafting, gardening and fixing! But I managed to get a few things in the ground recently, and despite the torrential rains we’ve been getting, they’re doing great so far.
It’s going to be a low-key summer for the garden this year. I took out some trees in the backyard last November, and I am looking forward to seeing how that changes the light in the garden. A year of observing and waiting, and maybe next year I’ll make some big changes. Oh wait, you thought that was a metaphor for life instead of my garden plan? Funny…
Parsley, Basil, Lemon Verbena, Chives, Peppers and Raspberries on the north side of the garden
Mint (three varieties), Thyme (two varieties), Oregano, Cilantro, Sage and Tomatoes on the southeast side
Annuals in the whiskey barrel out front — a purple and coral theme this year, which I’m loving so so much
Some beautiful Bleeding Hearts that have spread out in the front garden beds
Kale. Rhubarb. Chives (not pictured because they went straight into the pan).
And peonies. “Harvest” is quite literally the right word for these bushes – one day they’re all green, and the next there are white and pink flowers the size of a baby’s head just falling all over themselves in the yard.
The only possible solution is to cut them all off and fill every available vase in the house.
They’re pretty, and they know it. Diva flowers.
But I love them anyway.
When I’ve recovered from being back from vacation (isn’t the catching up the worst part of going away), I’ll have more garden, kitchen and painting escapades to share…
Thanks for the well-wishes, everyone. Moving day went great! In fact, it might have been the least stressful moving day I’ve ever experienced. Of course I’m chalking that up to the decision of hiring professional movers for the furniture. Completely, totally, utterly worth every penny.
I’ll post more photos when I’m fully moved in and settled, but for now, here’s a peek:
getting ready to move the couches out of the apartment
squeezing the couches through the front door
This Civil War-era bed has been mine since I was a little girl, and it was my mom’s before that. Grandpa Sterling found it at a farm auction in Iowa back in the ’60s. If you look closely at the bottom of the headboard, you can see the knobs that used to anchor the ropes that held the mattress. Mom used to have “rope-pulling parties” to tighten the ropes before Grandpa added slats and a mattress board.
obviously the best moving truck ever
it’s amazing how little space your stuff actually takes up in one of those huge moving vans!
hello, let me take up the entire block
front porch (arguably a room of the house, and the place I’ll probably spend most of my time)
dining room alcove
it was a beautiful day – 80 degrees and partly cloudy. perfect for moving.
and, the irises in the front yard finally graced us with their presence!
the most amazing bouquet of flowers I’ve ever seen (check out those orange ones!), from my colleagues at NCG
flowers from my garden
Cookbooks are ready to go! Dishes and food, not so much.