The L.O.T.U.S. blooms in Emma!

L.O.T.U.SOh yeah!!! The city of Emma, in the Township of Hazalton*, Asheville, N.C. has it’s own, gorgeous,brand spankin’ new urban farm supply and garden store, on N. Louisiana Ave. L.O.T.U.S. Living Only Through Urban Sustainability.  (Heads up poultry keepers, they swear they have the lowest feed prices in the area.) The store front is ’round the back about a block before the railroad tracks on N. Louisiana. It has an excellent selection of organic soils, seeds, fertilizer, starter plants, and compost tea.  They are working on opening their aquaponics section soon. Owned by a couple of knowledgable local guys, Brook & Clint, who understand the quirks of the gardening seasons in WNC they are ready to answer any question. So happy to have them just down the hill and not have to drive to Lowe’s or downtown for everything!!

*That’s what it says on my house’s legal description. 

Sprouting

SproutingAll my little endeavors of the last month are sprouting up nicely this week! Pop sure is glad I got started on the lettuce and spinach early in February! He’s had his pick of perfect salad greens for the past week now, with back ups and cabbages right behind out in the cold frame. Meanwhile, in the green house, the biggest pepper is starting to bud, the volunteer sunflowers the birds dropped and I weeded from the cold frame last fall, have bloomed and I’m just beginning to see the tiniest sprouts coming from the lilac and crepe myrtle seeds I started last month.  The new strawberry plants are looking so good!!  We’ve got big plans for all the old beds around the front of the house too!  We’re digging  out old posts, bricks, and bush stumps, killing the weeds and can’t wait to get back to the mulch yard next week  for another load so we can bury it all and start fresh.

And Pop looked up at me over coffee the other morning and said, ‘You know we’re so far out ahead this year it’s not even funny. We should start talking about an arbor for that front gate. . .”

Oh be still my heart, yes let’s!

Sprouting Sprouting Sprouting Sprouting Sprouting

Smarch!

“Lousy Smarch weather…” – Homer Simpson

Weird weather surrounded  our hill top today with alternating patches of sunshine, snow swirls, fog, and then everything melts away. Repeat.

March is going out, less like a lion or lamb and more like a walrus this year; prickly cold with ice and snow in it’s whiskers!  I know I have no room to complain in light of what most of the country has had to deal with this winter but . . .  ”Wah! Go away snow!”

Smarch

Snow on the Daffodils

You know spring can’t really begin until the snow falls on blooming daffodils.  These little old fashioned double dillys in my yard waited until yesterday to bloom and this was their reward.

Monday Mulch Machine

“Mulch” More Signs of Spring

A great way to start the week for Pop and I at the Stump Dump. I love the smell of triple ground mulch in the morning! Mark & the guys in the yard are always so nice it’s a pleasure to go there even if it is a bit more labor intensive than pre-bagged mulch from the store, but the price is right!!! Broke off a truck full of dry fine ground mulch from a pile for $10 and had it spread on the strawberries before 10 am. This big dozer was making the ground shake under our feet as we were loading up.
Mulch Machine

Spring Forward – Day Off

It’s too nice a day to not take a nap in the hammock, while soaking up the new extra hour of sunshine, playing catch up on that lost hour of sleep that disappeared in the middle of the night and waiting for sunset to finish a perfect Spring Forward day in the mountains.

Spring Forward

2.28.14 – Yard Machine

Yard Machine (Cass not included!)

Attention Winter!: It’s been bitter and I’m done with you. Buh-bye!

It’s tilling time!!  We brought out the yard machine in earnest today!  Cass broke ground today on our two newest garden patches in the yard and I spent all day cleaning out the greenhouse and transplanting lettuce & spinach to the cold frame. Beyond excited! I’ve got a brand new patch for my new strawberry plants on one side of the yard and one for asparagus on the other.  We picked up all our beautiful new starters from Jesse Israel & Sons Nursery just this week. Love that place! Special thanks to Lonnie Israel and his wife Gail for being so awesome and helpful when we were there. Pop & I came away feeling confident about what we’re growing this year and got some excellent advice from folks who know a thing or two about gardening in WNC!

 

Making up for Making up.

Catching up with a bit of overkill. I went new places without leaving the yard yesterday afternoon. Mad scientist style, fiddling with plastic eye loupes and my plants. Inspecting all of the teeny glory that hides under my nose every day.

Blooming in Winter

January is my toughest month of the year. Personally it’s a month that’s short on light and long on cold with maybe a few bright spots but I always stump it out and try to make the best of it, searching for havens of warmth and light.  This year though, I have the little greenhouse to keep me warm and busy with growth and green even at the threshold of January.  But last night, with temperatures in the teens, a windchill of -OMG, and one small space heater doing it’s best to keep the temperature in the greenhouse hovering at 40°in the bitter cold, I was worried. When I poked my head in this morning I fully expected to find a frozen disaster area of my precious baby plants and vegetables. Instead I found one of the nasturtiums blooming.

“Some flowers bloom, when the green grass grows, my praise is not for them, but the one who blooms in the bitter snow, I raise my cup to him.” – Anais Mitchell 

Blooming in Winter

Greenhouse grown nasturtium blooming in January.

Before Breakfast at the Botanical Garden

Yesterday morning Harmony and I took an explore  before breakfast around  the Botanical Garden at UNC Asheville.  We’ve been here before many times and I always lead the way but this morning Harmony led the way and chose the paths we would take while I ambled along, camera in hand, enjoying the direction of my youngest and discovering a few paths we’d never taken before.  It’s like I always say, perspective is everything!  Here’s a few photos of our discoveries. . .

 

 

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