Monday, April 11, 2016

Spring Planting

We are so glad it is spring around here!!
We are continuing to try and steward our little section of the world. .
And in the past. .
I have tried to keep a notebook to keep track of what gets planted where. .
So I thought that I might try and do a better job of that online. .
On the little blog I already own. .
That is full of all sorts of stuff!
Our homestead is at least 103 year old. The only thing that was growing here when we moved in 18 years ago. .
Was a tree row (in the area with these two young cedar trees), a smattering of big, old, ugly cedar trees in the yard, some elm trees that broke limbs with every wind storm, 1 lilac bush, and a small handful of red tulips. UG!
But looking at the bright side. .
It was a clean slate for the gardener!
With the exceptionally bad drought over the last 5 years. .and the age of the cedar row. .
Most of the trees died. .It was a mature wind row. .and we didn't realize the extent of the benefits until my husband cut them A.L.L down 3-4 years ago. Before he cut them. .he had gotten seedling cedars from the local extension office and planted them. .running a little water line to them--but neither of us did a very good job at checking the line or turning it on. So many of them died. .and the ones that have survived haven't thrived.  The ones closest to the hydrant are growing well. .as you can see. .and we look forward to the wind break from them soon!
We (I say "we" loosely. .it was mostly not me!) planted a row of lacebark elm trees to the north side of our house. .in between a couple of rows of the new cedar trees. Those have been in for 2 summers now. .and they are growing fast and well!
Jeremy is starting to grow the heart of a gardener. .
And he decided that he would like a small orchard out near the tree row. 
So this weekend. .we ran to Wichita and went to my new favorite nursery there. .
Hillside nursery. .on south Hillside.
We bought 5 fruit trees (only because Cami insisted on a peach tree)
And yesterday in the beautiful spring weather (even without much wind!!) we finished the water line and planting of the trees.
Starting from the north and heading toward the house we planted. .
One Golden delicious apple
One Honeycrisp apple
One Stella sweet cherry
One Montmorency cherry
and then to the east of that row, we planted one Red Haven peach tree. 
The root stock on these bare root trees found in their cellar was phenomenal!!
And the apple trees were left with a nice branch structure too!
The peach tree was blooming. .and somewhere online I read that their little tiny tree had like 5 peaches the year they planted the twig. .and 180 peaches the next year. How lucky!
At Lowes I had found these purple leaf sand cherry bushes. I put two of them right on the south edge of the pond. .I have had trouble finding stuff that would grow there. .it's HOT. .the plants that I have had there look too much like WEEDS when they aren't blooming (which was most of the summer). .and I couldn't deal with that view out the window as we ate dinner every night!! These bushes claimed they were ideally suited for ARID DRY conditions. .(Like ours has become over the last few years) So I put them in. .and will hope for the best!!
I also came across $.99-1.99 tomato and pepper plants last week in Oklahoma. .So I dug these old wall of waters out of my basement (I seriously can't remember how many years it has been since I used them. .bet it's close to 10!!) There is a frost advisory on for tonight. .but I would not be surprised if this is the last cold night. At least the tubes will protect the little plants from the wind. .and we are hoping for good deep root systems before it gets HOT! Their are 3 varieties of yellow tomatoes (my favorite) and the other 5 are varied reds. The pepper plants will come inside tonight and go into the garden in a few more days. I think they might get along well in the gaps of these raised beds. 
The green house hasn't had any seedlings started in two winters now. But it does a nice job of overwintering my growing succulent collection. .and this little stray larkspur!  Those will be replanted into pots on the west deck. .where less hardy plants wilt quickly due to the sun! The succulents add a nice flavor. .and I don't have to water the pots EVERY DAY. .something that has been impossible for me in this season of my life!
This sitting spot has become the family favorite. Devin and I cleaned up the water feature to the right of Jeremy in the picture. .and it has been running for a week now. .LOVE the sounds. .especially when the windows are open and I can hear it in the house!
These guys blessed me a ton. .
Because they all helped out with the planting and water line running. .
And Devin will learn to be the chief water man this summer!
Whether he likes it or not!
I have a few more things that we planted that I didn't snap photos of. .
But hope to do so soon! 
Hope you are finding some time to STOP. .and smell the lilacs!
Have a great week!!


  1. It all looks great! Don't you just LOVE this time of year!! We even got a little rain this morning. Enough to settle the dust. We love the lacebark elms and have one in its third year here, and it's amazing us with how much it grows each year! It's big enough to give evening shade to our 2-stories-up deck now!

    1. We got some rain as well yesterday!! We got a couple of Dynasty lacebarks a few years ago from Brady nursery. .they were big trees, as the yucky elms here are not looking good. .they are doing WONDERFUL! This will be their third season here. .so I look for them to really settle in now!

  2. Hello!! Nice to see you. What a pretty colorful photo of Cami to start off your post. You have been busy. I hope all your trees do well. My parents have the cherry bush you put in and it does well with little care. Maybe you've found just the thing. I have some wall o'water things somewhere too that I haven't used in forever. They really do make nice protection for those little plants. Not putting anything too tender out just yet here. We're suppose to freeze tonight. Unhooked all the hoses from the house. Just need it to rain!!!! Fun to see the larkspur in your greenhouse. Larkspur has a way of finding a spot. We have a bunch growing in the cracks of our driveway currently. So many plants that you shared with me are coming up right now. Nice to see them and think of you in the garden.

    1. Good to know about the cherry bush! I have seen some conflicting reviews online. .I was just going by the tag in the bush when I bought it. .and some resources suggest it needs moist time will tell how it works out!! So much of gardening seems to be location!! Hope to keep up with your blog better too!!

  3. I happened upon your blog searching for kids in a pickup bed full of wheat!! lol I wanted to send it to my cousin who lives in Alabama. We grew up in the back of pickup trucks swimming and chewing and eating wheat!! Noble county, Oklahoma. Until we were old enough to haul it into the Coop! Wouldn't trade it for the world! Would give anything for my girls to experience this. But they were raised in Dallas mostly, we lived in NC and now are back home (their parents home lol) in Oklahoma. Love your blog!! What a sweet taste of my childhood. I am looking forward to your pics as harvest is coming in June!! You have a darling family!! Have a great week!

    1. Hi Susan! Thanks for letting me know you stop by! So often the little widget shows me that lots of people stop by here. .and it is always nice to know how they get here!! Harvest photos are always some of my favorite!!

  4. Hi Melanie--so good to see you FINALLY posting again. Hope you can find the time to keep it up-we've all missed you so much.
    Good luck with all your new plantings-I certainly hope you guys start getting a bit more water out that way.
    We're STILL getting snow :(
    It needs to quit before I go bonkers. I may have to come down there and be the "water boy" for your plants. That will give me an excuse to get some warmth and sunshine-ha!
    Have a great spring

    1. HIRED!! When can you start. .hot and dry starts much earlier here than in Michigan. .so if you can be here by like next Wednesday?? That will be great..I don't pay too well. .but I can cook!! Bring Don too!! I'll bet Jeremy can keep him out of trouble :-)