Thursday, May 29, 2014

New plants with family name

Today we planted Walker's Low catmint in honor of our new grandson, Campbell Walker. I had looked around for something with his name, and this sounded perfect. It's hardy enough for our zone 3 garden, and it will appeal to our kitties! I bought it from Bluestone Perennials, and they suggested planting Happy Returns daylily with it, so I did. The Walker's Low name comes from an English garden which of course makes it even more appealing to me. I have two hazelnut trees coming in the fall in honor of Hazel Nina! Such fun.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Little Fur Family by Margaret Wise Brown

It doesn't get much better in the world of books for babies than Little Fur Family. The soft cover is so appealing for children to touch as someone they love reads the words to them. The story is the age-old tale of a child's day.

The father leaves for work

and the mother gets the little one ready for the day

He visits his grandfather, he makes friends with fellow creatures in the wood, and at the end of his day of adventures

The opportunity for the reader to sing is a particularly nice touch.

I read this to Hazel Nina this morning (in my pajamas) and you can see that she thoroughly enjoyed it. This is a wonderful book for young children, and for those lucky enough to read to them.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Today's poem by Claude McKay

Spring in New Hampshire        
Too green the springing April grass,
Too blue the silver-speckled sky,
For me to linger here, alas,

While happy winds go laughing by,
Wasting the golden hours indoors,
Washing windows and scrubbing floors. 

Too wonderful the April night,
Too faintly sweet the first May flowers,
The stars too gloriously bright,
For me to spend the evening hours,
When fields are fresh and streams are leaping,
Wearied, exhausted, dully sleeping. 

Claude McKay (1889-1948)

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day

This is what I wrote on my Facebook page today:

I remember an old Mister Rogers show when he looked right at the screen and said to all the children watching that they are the reason their parents are parents. I wouldn't be a mother without my most beloved children, Margaret and Michael. I am thankful for you every minute of my life.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Campbell Walker, our new grandson!

Campbell Walker was born this morning, May 6! The little lad weighed 7 pounds, 15 ounces. The new family is doing fine!

For newer readers, I should let you know that Michael is our son, and Estée is his fiancée.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Today's picture/Easter in May

In my book report on Miracles on Maple Hill, I mentioned that I learned something new about the bloodroot plant. The name of the plant in bud is "Easter candles."
All over the ground around her were great green leaves, each with a cleft in the side. Up through each cleft came a long thin stem, and on top of each stem stood a pointed bud exactly like a candle flame
When I went out today, I was thrilled to see I hadn't missed them. 

Thursday, May 1, 2014

A Year of Afternoon Gardens - May

First month without snow!! We dug out most of the orange day lilies from the front garden to make room for a wider variety of plants. Perhaps not surprisingly, we didn't start any seeds under lights as we planned. Our hearts and heads are too full of Hazel Nina, and the soon-to-arrive Campbell Walker! So, we'll buy plants and place them in the garden to bring more color to that spot. You may see some holes in the left garden. Yesterday we dug up a few day lilies and put some in the old vegetable garden beds, and brought some down to Margaret, adding to a bunch we gave her a few years ago. We'll fill in the holes, cover with cocoa shell mulch, and let the flowers have some breathing space. This is a bed filled with many different colored day lilies that bloom over the summer.

We have also made a decision about the vegetable garden. We are turning it into a flower garden except for garlic, lettuce, and yellow beans. Everything else we can buy at weekly farmers' markets, or at our local co-op store, or at farm stands. When we first moved up here 41 years ago, there was no source of organic food anywhere. There were a few farm stands, but no farmers' markets. And now, we can buy anything we want - both local and organic - so that we really do not need to keep up a vegetable garden. We've already turned two of the boxes into peony beds, and will fill the others as the spring goes on. I'm really quite excited about this. We've spent a lot of years working a vegetable garden, and I look forward to simply enjoying the flowers, and getting all our food without having to do any work. It comes at a good time in our lives when we are older, and want to spend more time with the grandchildren.

Just around the corner from the patio,

We dug out all the day lilies because they were shaded too much by the maple tree. They had been in there since Tom put in the patio, just a few months before I began writing the blog.

They grew and were beautiful but all the flowers tilted their faces toward the fence, as you see in this picture from August 2006. Again, some went to Margaret, and others are in the former vegetable garden. We're thinking we might move the prolific phlox which are on the other side of the fence into that spot.

And speaking of the fence, the sweet little picket fence has been up since 1999, and it looks its age. Instead of another picket, Tom has a scheme for a fence similar to this picture I found on Pinterest.

It will be cheaper to buy and easier to build. The plan is to do one section at a time. We'll put some chicken wire along the bottom to keep Sadie and any future Windy Poplars puppies from getting out. The thought is to have it go all the way out to the wood pile and then connect with the electric pasture fence. Tom is so happy to have retirement time to do all these things.