red flannel pantry

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Archive for the tag “toad in garden”

good night, sweet prince

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This weekend I put the garden to bed. The days are getting shorter and the temperatures cooler. I picked the rest of the tomatoes (even the green ones) and a load of peppers.

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As I began to remove the tomato plants, out popped Mr. Toad. I hadn’t seen him for a couple of months. I think I woke him.

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He shimmied into the soil and pretended to watch me work. What he really was doing was settling down to return to his nap.

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Ever so slowly he sank deeper into the garden until I glanced back one more time and he was gone. We’ll meet again in the spring.

garden visitors

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In the summer I often feel pulled by the simultaneous siren calls of the sewing room and the gardens. When the weather is cooperative, I usually succumb to the gardens’ more urgent needs as was the case today. While in the vegetable garden weeding, I came upon my old friend, Mr. Toad. He was enjoying the shade and the bugs beneath some lettuce that had bolted. He didn’t seem too pleased when I removed his temporary shelter and meal source.

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He kept me company for awhile, tucked into the shade of the garden hod. The midday sun soon became too much for him, and he shimmied beneath the raised bed board into the cool soil.

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While picking cucumbers, I spied a black swallowtail butterfly on the dill. I watched her for awhile, thinking I might get to see her lay eggs, but she was a tease and just flit about.

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This hummingbird and I startled each other as I approached the pots of lantana. She quickly recovered and continued with her lunch at the lamb’s ear. I have always thought these blooms were ugly and so have been quick to cut them back, but now I might wait, knowing that both bees and hummingbirds are fond of them.

the bees have been busy

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Although I have noticed fewer bees at my bird bath, I am pleased to see that they have been busy in the vegetable garden. The cucumbers are going gangbusters, with lots of little cukes on the vines. Baby peppers and tomatoes have been sighted as well.

2013-06-08The sage and basil are thriving. There is more rhubarb to be harvested, but in the meantime Mr. Toad is content enjoying its shade.

mr. toad came a’ calling

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When I ventured into the vegetable garden today, I almost stepped on our long-time resident, Mr. Toad. We found him several years ago in the yard and put him inside the fence with the raised beds. As you can see, he’s grown fat eating the bad bugs, slugs and snails for us. He loves the moist, loamy soil.

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The lettuce, onions and carrots are coming along. The radishes (far left) should be ready to be picked by early next week.

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The radishes we planted more recently have sprouted and are making a strong showing.

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The dill is looking good. Once it gets a bit bigger, I plan to try to pot some to share with friends–two full rows were planted and we don’t need that much ourselves for pickle making.

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I felt brave enough to plant the basil–surely we won’t get cold temps the second week of May?!  Last year I put the basil in pots near the house, thinking that it would make access from the kitchen easier. However, the basil languished–and thus so did pesto production. So it’s back in the ground again.

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The rhubarb continues to unfurl its meaty leaves. I have my eye on its red stalks–there will be plenty for pie this year.

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The fennel’s feathery leaves are shooting upward like green fireworks.

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The best news? The tomatoes have blooms!

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