Spring Has Finally Sprung and It’s Glorious!

Pasture Roses

After a very long wait, Spring is finally here

About two weeks before the official beginning of summer, it finally warmed up, the rain took a break, and Spring began. The wet cold made it seem that winter would never end – I was still wearing many layers well into May. Most of my neighbours in this little hamlet are avid gardeners and we were all outside as soon as there was a day without rain! We don’t see each other often in the wintertime unless we have dogs to walk, so garden talk is when we catch up.

My first project for Spring 2017 was laying this small garden path so I could have access to everything. I still need to add a few stepping stones going up the hill to the street.

garden path
New garden path with gifted bricks

I understand that it’s very strange for Nuthatches to use nesting boxes, but I have a pair who decided to use the box previously renovated by a red squirrel. I guess they liked the enlarged entrance.

Nuthatch nesting box
A little renovation & the Nuthatch nesting box was ready

This is the south side of the house and I heard them pecking away at it from inside. (My house really needs scraping and re-finishing.) I still don’t know what they did, but it sounded as though they were making a hole through to my keeping room! As of today there’s one baby hatched and it flew the coop today, June 13. It sat on top of the gate post (sorry about the poor quality picture) for some time before it finally joined its parents in the enormous Black Walnut tree above.

Newly fledged baby Nuthatch
Newly fledged baby Nuthatch
Baby Nuthatch playing peek-a-boo & ignoring its parents’ calls

The oregano in the herb garden closest to the house erupted very quickly with a bit of Spring warmth. Lots of Borage is up, and lots of seeds are planted. I’m one of those people who check for germination at least twice a day and this morning I saw teeny-tiny carrot beginnings. This is particularly exciting for me as I’ve never had luck with carrots. Two years ago I left one plant to over-winter and last year I harvested the seeds. They’re viable!

spring herb garden
Oregano thriving, Borage beginning

I dug up a small clump of Pasture Roses years ago from the side of the road and planted them at the top of my garden right by the curb. They’re now going right across the whole garden and moving down the hill toward the house. Yesterday in the sunshine I kept going out to have another sniff – their scent is glorious!

Pasture Rose close-up
Pasture Rose perfection
Pasture Roses
Pasture Roses

At the corner by the stone steps leading down to the house, the Canada Anemones are also thriving although before the roses the anemones went across the front of the north part of the garden. But if the anemones continue going down beside the steps, I’m happy. I love them, too.

Canada Anemone

Close to the first back herb garden is a raised bed (made from a ‘found’ kitchen cupboard turned on its back) with dill seeds in the back part. I saved those seeds from last year, too, and they’re viable! I haven’t decided what to put in the front section yet. In front of that bed is a pot of sprouted basil and on the tray, the tomatoes that haven’t yet found homes. My property is surrounded by Black Walnut trees that put out juglone from their leaves and their roots. Juglone is poison to many plants, including tomatoes, so it’s difficult finding spots for them.

Tomato seedlings & germinated Basil
Dill in the raised bed, basil in the pot, and tomato seedlings in the tray

There are a lot of Gooseberries already formed. It will be a while before they ripen. I’m looking forward to picking them while trying not to stab myself too many times with the numerous thorns. They came from a small plant that a neighbour gifted to me and they’re spreading.

Dreaming of Gooseberry jam and maybe a pie

Moving down the hill, I have Comfrey beside each of the three wee cherry trees that are taking forever to grow. It’s the type of Comfrey that isn’t invasive, but adds nitrogen and other nutrients to the soil. I’ve read that it’s very helpful to fruit trees.

Russian Comfrey Bocking-14
Russian Comfrey Bocking-14

Nearing the back of the yard are lots of ferns. I like this spot particularly.

Woodland garden with ferns
Woodland garden with ferns

Close by and nearer the pond, are lots of shrubs including Highbush Cranberry, Red Osier Dogwood, and one very tall Pagoda Dogwood. I love the blossoms! Back in 1999 I planted a lot of different trees: Oaks, American Elms and one Butternut, an endangered species. All are doing well including the volunteer Maples, I’m happy to say.

Highbush Cranberry
Fading blossom of Highbush Cranberry

It’s now mid-June, almost the end of Spring and beginning of Summer. The water is retreating in the flooded areas and the flora and fauna all seem to be off to a good start. It’s raining today, but that’s okay. A little rain every few days is just what we all need.

I can’t end this post without a comment about Mr. Jiggs, of course. The latest is that his rear dew claws had to be removed as they were causing a lot of problems. Here he is giving them some air!

Mr. Jiggs, my handsome hound!
The other half of Mr. Jiggs

17 Replies to “Spring Has Finally Sprung and It’s Glorious!”

    1. All the pictures are of my own property, so yes.

  1. Deb Weyrich-Cody says: Reply

    Love the Rose, Anemone, Dame’s Rocket combo. (One positive thing about all the overcast, cool weather we’ve had this Spring, it’s kept the plants in bloom for longer and been giving amazing light for taking photos!: ) Just wondering, with the lack of space with full sun there, if you’ve ever tried growing your tomatoes in pots?
    And here’s to hoping that Mr. Jiggs feels better soon: )

  2. Love poor Mr. Jiggs Jane, And your beautiful garden and adventures of the birdhouse!

    1. Thanks so much, Jens. I’m very lucky to have found this place 19 years ago.

  3. Anna Hawthorne says: Reply

    Hi Jane, restorative, peaceful imagery as a sanctuary sojourn~a gentle reminder of a simpler time, and one where we may visit at leisure when desired..Cheerio! Anna

    1. Hello to you in Nova Scotia, Ms Nomad! Hope that your travels take you where you want to be.

  4. Jane M. Lynch says: Reply

    Love reading your posts about your simpler life in Gores Landing. I have such pleasant memories of meeting you and walking about your beautiful hamlet. I hope it never changes. Maybe I’ll get up there again this years. There was lots I didn’t see other and other places/buildings where I would’ve liked to spend more time exploring and pholtographing. The road-trip up there via backroads is distracting in a siren-like way too. Sometimes the journey takes all one’s time and the destination is never reached. lol

    1. It would be lovely to see you and your beautiful dogs again, Jane. It’s quite amazing that we find so many kindred spirits on-line and sometimes meet in “real life,” too.

  5. Jane – what time of year did you dig up the pasture roses to replant? I didn’t even know you could do that! Also, how much sun do they need?

    1. Hi, Karen! At the time I dug up the roses I knew almost nothing about planting, but I at least knew that Pasture Roses are native here. It was Spring and they were flowering, which of course, people would say is not the time to transplant. Obviously, it worked. So you could probably find some flowering now – go get them!

  6. Jane:
    I love your photos and hearing about your garden. My carrots are just coming up also. I have planted some things in pots as I did last year. Last year the potted items grew great. Potted tomatoes spilled out onto the ground and took root. Yipee, I had lots of plum tomatos. Green peppers kept on giving and giving. I also have a small veg. garden. I could spend all day in the garden, but work calls me away. In the fall just before the frost I remove all the leaves from my tomato plants, but not the tomatos then cut the vine from the root. I let them sit on my garage floor overnight and then hang the vine and tomatoes in the basement. I have tomatos right into February as the green ones will ripen.
    Thanks for taking the time to contact me. It’s good to hear from you.

    1. Great method of keeping tomatoes, Isobel. How lovely to have organic, home-grown tomatoes in February! It sounds like it’s going to be a good year for your gardens. Although I love the huge Black Walnut trees, I don’t appreciate their affect on growing vegetables. It would be lovely to be able to spend all day outside in our gardens – that’s what I’m looking forward to doing one of these years.

  7. Jane,
    Your garden is beautiful and I am glad to hear spring has finally come to your neck of the woods. It is long gone from ours. Thanks for the photos of Mr. Jiggs.

    1. Marc, I’m glad that you finally got rain in California. I haven’t heard lately how it’s going, but I hope the drought is really over. Mr. Jiggs says “hi” to Pete and Ellie!

  8. I just love your back garden, Jane. It is a little piece of Eden.

    1. Thanks, Heather! It’s a labour of love, as you well know. I’m also learning a lot from you.

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