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daisybeans
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Recent Entries to this Blog Blueberry patch is planted!
Posted: 07 Apr 2010
the blues shipped from the grower today
Posted: 02 Apr 2010
Blueberry Blog
Posted: 20 Mar 2010
Baby fruits and veggies
Posted: 20 Jun 2009
Iris, roses and three amigos
Posted: 17 May 2009

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daisybeans's Blog




Blueberry patch is planted!

Category: Blueberry blog | Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:53 am

The blueberries arrived on Saturday afternoon! I was excited to see the box on the front steps, but surprised at how small and lightweight it was... I had really been wondering what these plants would be like since all the plants I'd seen in the nurseries were at least 2 or 3x the price of those I ordered from the grower. So I expected them to be small, but I was alittle taken aback. They are younger than I thought they would be so ... maybe no fruit this year. But they look happy and healthy and I like them.


The tiny blueberry plants ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

Now, I've only bought one other plant through the mail and it was a more mature rhodie in a pot... This was so different! It kind of scared me to see them looking so vulnerable and fragile!!! I had alredy prepared the bed for them with lots of peat so I got right to planting them.

Following the instructions that I had been given by our blueberry guru here on GS (that would be Sjoerd), first I dug a hole about a foot deep and two feet wide with loose soil in the bottom. I added peat to the bottom and mixed it up and watered it in. To the soil I removed from the hole, I added about the same amount of peat, maybe a little more so it was really peaty. Here I would have added some bone meal, except I didn't have any... (oops).



pretty good hole! ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


ground soil and peat mix ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


Each plant arrived with its little root ball rinsed of soil and packed with some of that jelly-like stuff that holds a lot of water, then wrapped in a plastic bag and held closed with a rubber band.


in the bag ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )



the root ball with the jelly-like stuff ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

I gave the roots a little drink and gently spread them out. I was thinking they looked OK... but I was also thinking "What do I know????"



root ball ready to plant ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

I had to take a deep breath.... they'll be fine I said to myself. No worry, the neighbors are used to me talking to myself and the plants....

Then, I filled the hole most of the way with the soil/peat mix. I made a mound of soil in the middle and placed the plant on top, spreading out the roots and checking to make sure the base of the plant where the roots meet the stems was level with the top of the hole. I snugged in so that it won't sink too much and then packed around the roots with moist soil mix. Then filled in the rest of the hole with that mix.

Did I mention that talked to them at several points? At least I can say we've become "friends" and hopefully I did OK planting them!


all snugged into its new home ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

The next day, I pressed down the soil around the plants and filled in the low spots with more soil/peat mix. At this point, I had some bone meal so I top dressed the soil with about 1/2 of a trowel of bone meal around each plant and about the same amount of berry fertilizer about 6-8 inches out from the plant. I worked that into the soil, gave them a drink, and then I put about 2-3 inches of peat moss around each plant. I moved the soil away from the base so that they are still level with the top of the soil.

Then, I finished the whole thing with a few inches of shredded pine bark mulch.

And here is the finished blueberry patch. There are six plants in there, believe it or not. Five were from the grower and one I bought at a nursery. That one is a little bigger than the others.

(Don't mind my falling down fence. It's being replaced shortly.)


the finished blueberry patch ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

Next I have to figure out the watering issue. We had a little rain this a.m. so not a problem yet... Think I will collect rain like I did last year and use that along with dehumidifier water when needed... Let's see how it all goes.

Thanks for all the support GS friends, espcially Sjoerd and Jewell for the tips! And especially thanks to Sjoerd for patiently describing the soil prep and planting process to me (more than) a few times (and STILL I forgot the bone meal... duh.)



Last edited: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:54 am

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the blues shipped from the grower today

Category: Blueberry blog | Posted: Fri Apr 02, 2010 1:59 am

I have been (im)patiently waiting for my blueberry plants to arrive from the grower in New Jersey.... It has been about 2 weeks since I ordered them. When I ordered, the grower said they would ship plants to Maryland asap since it was time to get them in the ground! The two weeks went by so slowly and every day I would look hopefully to the porch as I walked up the path....

Yesterday I emailed the grower and he replied right back to say they were shipping the last of the Maryland plants by the end of the week. Then today he emailed again to say that the plants had JUST SHIPPED today from the post office in New Jersey. Yippee!

If I am a lucky gardener, they will arrive on Saturday, or Monday at the latest. I happen to be off on Monday so I am keeping all of my fingers crossed that I will be able to get them planted then.

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Blueberry Blog

Category: Blueberry blog | Posted: Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:40 pm

My "something new" for this year is blueberries.... so I'm going to keep track of the experiment.

For the past couple of weeks my focus has been on how to prep the soil so that my blues will have the ph of 4-5 that will make them the happiest. Sjoerd reco'd the Azalea/Rhodi soil mix and after calling and visiting some 6 large local nurseries and talking to nursery people at 2 garden shows, I have come to the conclusion that it's just not seen as necessary around here... Who knows why, but it is odd. But, regardless, because of that, I've learned about how to adjust the ph in other ways so I think in the long run, it will be just fine.

I also spent some time learning about the best plants for this area. The most consistent advice I got was to know where the plants were started (good advice for any plant purchase) and buy plants that will be hardy enough to withstand our winter. In other words, don't buy plants started in the South. Bunkie reco'd a farm in NJ called Dimeo Blueberry Farms and they look like a good operation so I ordered 5 plants from them. More about that when the plants arrive, which should be within a week or two.

But back to the soil.

Yesterday I took my new ph tester and became very familiar with the soil and amendments... very fascinating (the ph of dirt is fascinating? Really? I believe I may be getting nerdier and nerdier the older I get... and my friends and family would concur... my cousins looked at me with one eye closed when I told them about it last night. But I just KNOW my GS friends will get it!).

Generally speaking my soil is at ph 6, a tiny bit higher outside of the drip line of the pine tree. But peat and compost are lovely for ph, at 4-5 and 5 respectively. I learned that it's not so easy to change the ph of a large area. You have to add a lot of amendment. I added about 150 lbs of peat and about 4 cups of soil acidifier (sulfur). Still the overall ph didn't change much. But I think it will still be OK. When the plants arrive, I'll dig the holes deep and 2x as wide and fill the bottoms with peat/soil mix, then fill in with more peat/soil mix. I also have a very nice organic fertilizer for acid loving plants. I am still thinking about whether to add more soil acidifier as I read in one source not to add sulfur around the plants...

I expanded my space to accommodate all 5 plants that I ordered plus one more that I bought from a nursery around here. Here are the before and after... Doesn't look like much at this moment but I am imagining how it will look.




"Before" -- wow, what a mess. ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






Another before shot. ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

Looks a mess doesn't it???




150 lbs of peat ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


1 50 lb bag of peat here ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

Interestingly, adding this much peat (50 lbs) to this small area didn't change the ph of the area very much at all. That is how I know that really prepping the holes at planting will be very important for the blues. Also additional amendments each year...


two spots for blues ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

The "after" pic still doesn't look like much. My poor fence is really in bad shape. I am trying to decide what to replace it with -- I'd like something that provides privacy in some areas but increases air flow and sunlight in others... hmmm, I think I will post a forum topic and see what ideas the Garden Stewers have (now why didn't I think of that before???!!)

But it is a nice spot with nice sun from late a.m. on, and I hope the blues are happy there. There is plenty of space for the plants to be 2 feet or more apart from one another so I'm thinking about what I might grow in between...












Last edited: Fri Apr 02, 2010 1:50 am

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Baby fruits and veggies

Category: Other Stuff around the yard | Posted: Sat Jun 20, 2009 8:22 pm

Rain, rain and more rain.... five minutes of sun... rain, clouds, thunder & lightning... I finally decided the best thing to do was to take some pics of my wet veggies and fruit.

Other than a couple of tomatoes in a pot, this is the first year that I've planted veggies in -- oh my goodness -- 15 years! I have tomatoes, red peppers, patty pan and yellow squash, okra, cucumbers and one bean plant. Those that were planted in large pots are doing very well -- good soil, good drainage, and decent sun since they were portable. Those planted in the ground are inconsistent. We've had a LOT of rain so some have stayed a little wet where the ground is jus saturated. It hasn't been very hot yet. And the amount of sun they get isn't the best, even though I did limb some trees to provide a little more. The other interesting thing is that they are here and there in the yard, squeezed in where there was room and/or sun. I'm considering making a large raised plot in a section of yard near the figs for next year... keep it all in the same area.

Anyway, baby veggies!




squash blossom peeking out ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






Baby yellow squash! ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






tomatoes and peppers ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






Broccoli and cucumbers, flooded again... ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )





Patty pan squash - my favorite ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






Lots of baby figs are setting. ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )





Last edited: Sat Jun 20, 2009 8:22 pm

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Iris, roses and three amigos

Category: Other Stuff around the yard | Posted: Sun May 17, 2009 4:12 pm

This year the iris bloomed heavily and there were four different kinds and I don't know their names -- if anyone does, I'd love to know. As usual in my yard, there are a LOT of blooms but not much variety. There was a large darker purple with big flowy petals.


large purple.... ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


There was another large flower with pretty light purple and white blooms. These two were the first to bloom.



large light purple and white ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


The last to bloom was this small, very dark purple iris. My camera doesn't quite capture how bright and saturated the color is. It's a smaller bloom and shorter stem than the others.



small dark purple... ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )



Then, there is this one, with bi-color petals in reddish-purple and yellow. Again, camera doesn't quite capture the colors exactly. This one grew on really tall stems. These are the first blooms.


purply-red and yellow just starting to bloom ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )



Many of the tall iris were bent over in the rain so I cut them and brought them inside. I totally enjoyed them, made the kitchen smell so nice and the many buds continued to bloom.

Of course Missy had to get in at least one of the pictures. She loves to have her picture taken -- when she is in the mood!


Missy ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






bi-color ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

My goal this year is to divde the iris beds and make some room for some different kinds. I think that will be pretty.

My roses are blooming... though not so profusely as in other years. I wonder if it because of the black spot? I continue to pick the leaves and spray with milk and I'm happy that the new leaves look healthy. Roses still confuse me... I'm not at all sure of what I am doing with these! I know they need to be pruned, when and how will be my next research project.

American Beauty -- this one has only gotten one bloom per year the past few years. This year this bloom plus 2 tiny buds. Poor girl does not look healthy so will need continued TLC! She does not give up and provides many lessons in resilience.







First bloom on American Beauty ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

The old bush by the fence is doing OK. Not great yet, but OK. Lots of blooms and buds. I wish I knew what it is called. It's about 50 years old at least.






bloom and buds on the old rosebush. ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

Last one, the yellow climber that doesn't climb... lost the tag, no idea what it is called. It's looking the healthiest of the three and I think the yellow blooms are pretty. Funny thing, it is right next to my neighbor's old pink bush and that one doesn't seem to have a speck of black rot. I wonder why?





first blooms on the yellow climber ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )



Today when I went outside to snap the little purple iris, these three amigos greeted me and then we all had breakfast. I'm sure Lady will lay her eggs in someone's yard -- oh, I hope not mine! As I have said before, I worry so about nests and babies in my yard, I lose sleep!!! But we shall see.



Good morning three amigos ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






...have some breakfast! ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

'til another day!



Last edited: Sun May 17, 2009 4:13 pm

This blog entry has been viewed 2168 times


A few more Spring blooms in my yard....

Category: Other Stuff around the yard | Posted: Wed Apr 29, 2009 12:56 am

There are iris everywhere. The purple are the first to bloom, and others of different colors come along a little later. Here are some of the purples..

There are lots of things that have special meaning to me in the yard -- I brought the stones along this bed from the homestead that was originally my grandparents' place. An aunt lives there now.


( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

I am relieved that the dogwood tree looks no worse for the wear as it blooms. I was worried about it earlier because it seemed to have gotten some frost damage on the trunk. My father and I planted this together one Spring a long time ago.






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


The figs!!! I will probably blog a lot about the figs. They get more beautiful (to me) as the summer progresses. These figs have an interesting history too, but that is for another time. For today, here are the first sprouts!


You can see the old trunk behind the leaves. If I don't get them trimmed way back each year, I can't reach the figs!


( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


Look at that cute little fig! It will be delicious in a couple of months!



early fig sprouts ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

Under one of the figs, my mom's favorite little flower, lily of the valley grows. So sweet.





( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )











( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )


Till next time!



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So much going on in my yard right now!!

Category: Other Stuff around the yard | Posted: Wed Apr 29, 2009 12:29 am

Wow, I just can't believe how much is blooming in my yard right now. To walk down the path is just heaven. Between the lilacs and the wisteria, the scent is amazing. Turn the corner and sweet smelling laurel is blooming too. Everywhere I look, things are coming up and looking happy. Take a look!

The lilacs are heavy with flowers! I take a sniff every time I pass by!




( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






lilac with lonicera tatarica zebellii ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

The wisteria.... Oh, I know, I complain about them all the time but they are beautiful and if I can just keep up with them.... I have two left -- one old, and one new. I am training the new one up an old clothesline pole. The old one is in desperate need of a new arbor.




( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






wisteria trunk ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






a wisteria I am training up the old clothesline pole ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






wisteria blossom ( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

The laurel is blooming too. Smells like candy!!








( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )

I hope you enjoy! I hae more to post but... for another day.



Last edited: Wed Apr 29, 2009 12:31 am

This blog entry has been viewed 1698 times


The Before....

Category: the cherry tree saga | Posted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 2:53 am

Well, here is my first blog....

My back fence neighbor and I will have quite a project coming up. There is a large "Choke Cherry" tree that is right at the fence. It's on my neighbor's side of the fence but much of the tree hangs over my garage so I am keenly aware of this situation.... The tree has a large crack in the trunk -- see the picture!! It is also getting a rotting spot at the base of the trunk. Poor tree, it needs to come down asap. Or, to put it another way -- this tree is coming down one way or another but I'd like it to NOT come down on my garage! I feel very sad about it, actually. I grew up in this house so everything growing here has a memory attached to it... Anyway, I will keep you posted on "the plan..." I think my brother is going to bring over something called a "boom truck" with a "bucket" on it and they will take it down in small sections.






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )






( photo / image / picture from daisybeans's Garden )





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