Archive for the ‘gardening’ Category

Time to Get Started…

April 29, 2010

We’re a bit behind on working on our garden.   I feel like this happens every year– I’m dying to get started in February, but reluctant to start seedlings inside. (‘Seedlings’, aka ‘cat treats’/ ‘dirt playground’.)  But then I blink and somehow its the end of April.  Anyhow, I found this beautiful book at the library recently.

The illustrations by Sharon Beeden are just so perfect and lovely.

Honestly, the book itself didn’t strike me as the most helpful– though I’m definitely a beginner and need everything laid out just so.

But the wonderful illustrations are so inspiring.

This weekend we’re buying seeds!

Click on the images to see more at Flickr…

The Garden Grows Green Green Green

June 18, 2009

Remember a month ago we made those raised beds and planted all those seeds?  Well, a bit to my surprise, everything is actually growing!  Probably greatly helped by the plentiful summer showers we’ve been having the last few weeks.  See what I mean?  

For those of you who need more garden happiness, there are more over on Flickr.  

By the way, how is everyone doing on their Modish Biz Tips Goals?  Hmmm.

Where were we?

May 14, 2009

The garden is 85% there!  We still have a number of seeds to put in.  But under the supervision of our elderly neighbor, (who offered a sledgehammer at one point,) the beds are made!  The lawn is mowed!  The back yard looks tidy, if not very pretty. 

After realizing that 1,000 pounds of soil was not going to be nearly enough for both beds, we decided to have one totally lead free and the other a mix of the old soil, with a bit of the new.  Its not ideal, but as our lead levels weren’t completely through the roof, we can technically plant “fruiting plants” with no worries.  So the squash, tomatoes, etc will be in that one.  But anything leafy, or root-like will be in the lead-free box.

Yes, now we actually have to plant the darn seeds.

Its Friday.

May 8, 2009

This weekend is all about gardening.  We’ve decided to go ahead and plant a vegetable garden despite the high levels of lead in our backyard– gross, but common here.  Among other causes, these old houses are smothered in lead paint.  So that means raised beds!  And ridiculous amounts of new soil.  We have taken care of the extremely heavy job of purchasing said soil.  But we still have to build the beds and actually dump the soil in them.

 And you know, plant some seeds.  

Cross your fingers for us.  

P.S. Aren’t those tulips crazy?  We spotted them in McGorlick Park in Brooklyn.


April 15, 2009

Still working on my goals for the Monthly Goal Meetup at Modish Biz Tips.  Now that I’m actually getting them done, I’m realizing some of them need to be amended a bit.  Isn’t that always the way?  For example:

Goal 2. Go over and update contact list.  

I should really differentiate my email from my mailing contact lists.  They’re two different animals, at least right now.  I (should) have several email lists, clients and business contacts, friends and family, and then the businesses/art directors I’d like to contact individually.  My (new) mailing list will include a few of my existing clients, but mostly will be reaching out to new clients.  Hopefully in the future these will meld a bit, but since my work is a little different, I’m trying to reach new and different clients. 


Goal 2 A.  Go over and update email contact lists.

Goal 2 B. Go over and update mailing list. 

 And then there are the goals that take more than one step to accomplish.  Because I’m basically five years old, crossing out steps is really motivating for me, so I should add those in.  

Goal3. Finish designing postcard mailer, get it printed and mailed.  

Its on its way to the printers but let me add :

•Buy stamps and labels. 

•Print out labels and stick them on.

And Goal 6. List two new items on Etsy.  Let’s add

• Pick two items that would be A fun to produce, B. cost effective, C. Relatively easy.  

•Come up with price points for them.  

• Make, or have them made. 

• Photos.

• Figure out shipping materials. 

See? It will be way more fun to cross off  seven things, than just two.  And it will help me stay on track.

Anyways… I’m crossing things off slowly but surely.  

On another note, the image above is one of my new ones.  I’m hoping my backyard will look like that in a few months!


Letters and Gardens

August 7, 2008


I got a letter from my grandmother today.  I love letters! I always forget how fun it is to get one in the mail, until I actually do. And its so nice.  She told me about working in her garden (apparently she uses a tabasco recipe to keep the deer away!) and the painting classes she’s going to start.  She’s a master gardener.  For real.  People used to tour her garden at her old house– the rose garden, the sunken garden, the front yard.  It was huge and had all these different parts.  Now she lives in a retirement community, and does most of her gardening in her plot of a shared garden.  I told her how our new neighborhood has a community garden across the street from us, and she wrote back saying that community gardens are so fun because of all the people you meet and all the new things you learn.

Pretty soon, the cats and I will have to say goodbye to our little roof garden.  It turned out to be a nice little spot…Do you see that one red tomato in the photo below? I got to pick it yesterday!

Being a Beginner

June 15, 2008

You know what’s funny? The other day I was looking at some “before and after” photos of someone’s new office and was wondering why I don’t take those. I love looking at them– whether they’re mine or of something someone else has done. And they are so gratifying to have paired with the pretty “after” version. Well, working in my little roof garden last night, looking around at how small and pathetic it seemed, it came to me:

I hate taking the “before” pictures.

I take lots of pictures of the “after” part. And yeah, I know, having just the shiny, end result kind of defeats the purpose if you can’t remember where you started. I get caught up in “It doesn’t look good now!” instead of remembering that this is the starting point, and that it will look better and that its okay if its not great now. In fact that is the whole point of beginning something. To let it grow into something better. I’m not good at being a beginner.

Anyways. Here’s the garden now.

 ( And you can get a glimpse of it in its even earlier days here.)

In a month it will be all glorious with vines and such. But this is where it started.

First Growth

May 2, 2008

tomato seedlings

 I spent some time gardening on my roof yesterday.  Apparently my landlord is going to do some work on the actual roof today, and I still had old soil spread out to dry that needed cleaning up, plus lots of seeds to plant and new compost to use, NYC Paydirt, from the Lower East Side Ecology Center. It was such a lovely few hours.  Sunny, with little sprinkles of rain.  The cats scampering around.  

Since its on a roof, everything is in pots and containers.  Yesterday I planted cat grass, Moon Flowers, Morning Glories, Catnip, Snap Dragons, some kind of runner bean vine, and Bachelor Buttons all from seed.  We’ll see how they do.  (An aside: I noticed this morning that the new Illustration Friday subject is Seed.  How perfect! ) I’m really hoping to have lots of leafy vines to wind up the fencing and over the new chicken wire we put up to keep the cats in.  But wouldn’t it look lovely?

I also have basil and four little tomato plants growing in one pot and two ornamental grasses my mother gave me last year.  They looked amazing and huge last summer and I’m really hoping they do just as well this year.  The potato vines look a bit sad so far, but hopefully they’ll catch on.  The tarragon and mint came back from last year.  Which is funny because I assumed they were annuals? But that was a nice surprise.  In fact, they’re doing so well it was time to pinch some off.  

mint and tarragon

That meant mint and tarragon in the breakfast oatmeal this morning!  

According to my favorite gardening site, You Grow Girl, “lightly brushing your hands against tomato leaves stimulates a growth hormone in the plant encouraging radial (aka stockier) growth.”  Isn’t that nice?  I have to go pet my tomatoes.




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