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Daily Paul Gardens: The jrd Edition

My friend’s parents have somewhere between 10 and 15 (I always forget exactly how much, but it is in that general range) acres of property. Her Mom is a master gardener and every summer since high school I have spent a lot of time on that property helping with gardening and various landscaping tasks. String-trimming, rototilling, mowing, branch cutting…the whole works. Her parents are getting older and doing a lot less on the land and the past 3 summers they have given me a lot more responsibility and land to work with. This is what I have going on this summer.

First; the flowers.
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This picture below is one of my favorites. Two summers ago I began referring to this basket as the basket of death. It had shriveled and died and it was what was thought to be a lost cause. My friend’s Mom was about to throw it to the field and get rid of it, but I argued its case and told her I would bring it back to life. And after much picking of the dead leaves, watering, and rotating; it lives!

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And the roses….

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Moving on to the trees. Their property over runneth with trees. Mostly pine trees, a lot of Jack pines. A few elm trees, a black oak or two, a few willow trees down by the pond and these two trees. I helped put the top tree in the ground quite a few years back and I love watching it grow and the bottom one is just cool.

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And the actual garden plots. This year we only have two going on, in the past there have been up to 4, but all I can handle is 2 this summer.
The back garden is going to need a lot of tender love and care over the next couple weeks. It got off to a late start and it is in rough shape. However, there is pumpkin, squash, and rhubarb planted back here. I’ll update the pics in the fall if everything grows as planned.

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And the front garden has tomatoes, carrots, green peppers, corn, and potatoes.

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Last summer my friend’s mom had heard through the grapevine that putting down straw works as mulch and helps preserve moisture. It worked well last summer, and that is what is all over the gardens. Admittedly we got a really late start this summer, so we will see how it goes.



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That was awesome, thanks for sharing.

And I too liked the tire swing pic. I was looking in the background to see what kind of old tractors or equipment you use. Do you get to do the mowing too? When I was a kid I hated mowing. Now, every time I'm visiting my parents I mow the yard as much as I can. (Of course now it's a zero turn? riding mower, unlike the pushers we had as kids)

I'm doing aquaponics and plan on putting in my grow beds in Oct. or Nov.. Our growing season is opposite of yours, it was 113 degrees today, kind of hard to grow maters in that kind of heat. (But my fish are thriving)

Congratulations on your beautiful garden!!!

"It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere".
--Voltaire

It's hard not to be a menace to society when half the population is happy on their knees. - unknown

jrd3820's picture

Old equipment?

I'll get some good pics of all that for you in a few days. My friend's Dad actually collects antiques and is really into machinery. He has some cool tractors and a backhoe. I got the backhoe pretty stuck one time and he has been leary about me using it since lol. I don't use those, but I use most of the other equipment. I also shy away from the chin saws when it comes branch removal time, but I'll hand saw like crazy and I'll use the pull saw also. And yes, there is always mowing to be done. A lot of it I can do on the riding lawn mower, but some of it has to be pushed because of how the property is sectioned off. Her Dad is also really obsessive and kind of a perfectionist, so I take the string trimmers along the edges of the property about once a week.

Admittedly I don't know much about aquaponics or permaculture. Mdefarge and I were talking a few nights ago and she said she'd get me some links on permaculture, but I know there is a lot of info around here on that.

Yeah, I told krp down below. I used to dread lawn work. It was a high school summer type job for me, but I've grown to love it and volunteer for more projects every year.

I would love to see some pics of your fish and whatnot if ya think about it.

Hope you're having a nice summer Ira!

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.”
― Dr. Seuss

Wow, you're a regular farm-hand

I love old equipment too. My wife always complains about all of my oooooooollld stuff. I tell her it's cheaper, I can sometimes fix it, and it'll last longer than the new stuff (usually) and besides if I didn't like antiques, I would've never married her. (She doesn't think that's funny)

I'll post the fish farm stuff in the future. Right now I am moving my tanks and raising them with railroad ties, trying to get more gravity working for me. I now move all my water with pumps and it takes lots of time.

Going to do some chores now while it's cool out

"It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere".
--Voltaire

It's hard not to be a menace to society when half the population is happy on their knees. - unknown

Nice, jrd

It's great that you were able to learn things from a master gardener. That's an awful lot of garden to take care of. I don't know how you have the time, with all you do. Well, it all looks really nice. I want to draw that big tree with the tire-tube swing. :)

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

jrd3820's picture

Thanks M

With all I do....lol; this is all I do. At least in the summer it seems like it. It feels good though. At the end of the day, I'm usually beat, but like I said; it feels worth it.

If you do draw the tree, I would love to see it.

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.”
― Dr. Seuss

Thanks for sharing,

as nothing brings you closer to Mother Earth than a garden. Mine was also started late, but I'm still enjoying it. Planting only one seed, with your hands in the dirt, puts you in touch with all of Creation. I say, good for you.

jrd3820's picture

You're welcome. I seem to just enjoy the work,

even if the outcome isn't always the best. It sounds like you do also. When I first started working around their property I was in high school and very much looked at it as work and kinda dreaded it. Over the years though I have come to love it. It is hard work, but it is fun, relaxing, and in the end there is a finished product. I don't look at it as a job anymore, just something I do every summer and something I kind of look forward to (unless it's over 80 degrees or something lol).

Good luck with yours. I plan on updating the pics here as things grow.

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.”
― Dr. Seuss