The days are crisp and the skies are blue and the sun's rays are radiant in a clear autumn sky. Most of the fruit has been picked except for grapes ripening on the vine,while the vegetables are still going strong! Many of the garden flowers such as Salvias and Asters will shine with a fall bloom that will take us clear into winter. And the Runner Beans have created beautiful walls of color in the garden, which will soon grow into long pods awaiting a November harvest. The sweet season of fall is upon us and life is good.
The days are long and hot here in the Eastern Sierras. Even with the heat the garden is still shining with it's beautiful fruits and lovely flowers. The tomatoes should be ripening soon which is always a treat. Our "summer salsa" time has begun!
Early summer in the garden is just so vibrant that one needs no words. Photos are all that's needed...
The gardens always shine in May and this year even more so. We've had lovely weather and we've also been feeding the garden with some really great stuff! We do soil drenches and foliar feeding (using a hand held sprayer) with some of Steve's compost tea as well as a mix of fish emulsion and liquid kelp too. And this year I've created, with the help of the garden helpers,an amazing product called "The Garden Blend Essence Kit". It has five different flower essence blends made specifically to support and balance the garden environment. And this year the garden is shining! Rather than talk about it, here's some photos to enjoy! Happy Spring everybody!
My first class was held on Saturday at "The San Diego Botanic Gardens" in Encinitas,Ca It was a beautiful blue sky day with a lovely breeze and a garden full of spring blooms. And the pollinators were everywhere! The class was held in the herb garden and we were surrounded by sweet smelling herbs full of bees and butterflies. And just beyond the garden were bottlebrush trees full of Annas and Allens hummingbirds.What a delight they were as they chased and squabbled among the bright red flowers! It was the perfect setting for a class about the pollinators! We had a nice group of women and each of us shared our own gardening experiences in the ways we create our unique sanctuaries.Some focused on butterfly gardens while others planted for the bees. I had alot to share about hummingbirds since I've got so many and it inspired the other women to provide the flowers and feeders which attract them as well. It seems to me that when we plant for the pollinators our gardens become so much bigger than us. They become a beautiful tapestry of life which nourishes so many and with that,our own souls are nourished in the process.And that's a very good thing indeed...
Another year around the wheel and, in the Northern hemisphere, we're back to spring again! It's one of my favorite seasons as the fruit tree buds swell and burst into color and the spring bulbs emerge and surprise us, as each year we forget where they're located and then there they are! We have so many bulbs in the garden such as beautiful fragrant hyacinths, delicate crocus, cheerful daffodils and the elegant cups of tulips looking like lollipops in the garden! The Spring Equinox this year occurred right after the New Moon which is the perfect time for planting. Also the moon was in the Earthy sign of Taurus, a very fertile sign, so we were lucky to plant on the first day of spring this year! The hardy spring crops-lettuce, carrots, kale, chard, cilantro and peas-were planted directly into the garden under a hoop house for protection from spring frosts.We grow and sow or own seeds so planting day is special as it's full circle, connecting one growing season to the next. Before planting I hold the precious seeds to my heart and bless them back into the garden. My heart is full by the time all seeds have been tucked away in their cozy garden beds. Meanwhile the tender summer crops are planted in pots and placed on sunny windowsills. When it's warm enough they'll be moved into the greenhouse to "harden up" to the environment and then finally (after the New Moon in May) it's into the garden they go! This year we've planted tomatoes, peppers, squash, beans, basil, tomatillos, zinnias and Mexican Sunflowers. Seeds are such a miracle as they hold the template for the entire plant; for it's stems, roots, leaves, fruit and its' seeds which begin the cycle once again. For us the new cycle has also begun at the first call of spring. The sun is now in the sign of Aries which signifies new beginnings on the Astrological wheel. We wake up from our winter's rest, ready to do some spring housecleaning and then venture outside to play in the dirt! It's a glorious time in the garden, fresh with the promise of the summer fruit to come. May you all have a fruitful season in this new year and I'll see you next month in the garden...
It's the buzz word these days - adaptability! And with a changing climate,this means being flexible and open to all the changes in the garden. Here in the west, we've had a mild winter. Warm sunny days, cool nights and certainly not as much moisture as we had last year. Our warm pattern here brought the opposite to the east, where a polar vortex cold dominated the landscape along with ice, snow and very cold temperatures. Our weather map looked like a yin/yang symbol this winter! For the east the gardening cycle was simple; everything went to sleep and hopefully most of the plants could handle the cold temps,especially in the southeast. Meanwhile, in the west, some plants went into dormancy while others kept on blooming. In our garden we had salvia, scabiosa and rosemary blossoms and even a single echinacea flower bloomed into the New Year! We went on many long walks in tee-shirts and shorts and the honeybees came out on most days to socialize at the hummingbird feeders! A few weeks ago we began our annual garden pruning as crocus and daffodils bloomed in vivid colors and the Almond tree blossoms opened into sprays of white flowers. The bees were delighted! About a week ago this "spring door" shut hard. Daytime temps went from the 70's to the mid 40's while the nighttimes dipped into the teens. The blossoms froze and we haven't seen a single bee - they're back to hunkering down in the hive! This morning we even awoke to a light dusting of snow! Unfortunately, we probably won't get any almonds this year and we'll just have to wait for the next flush of color from the spring bulbs that haven't opened yet. Luckily the other fruit tree buds are staying closed but there's always the danger of them opening during a warm spell then freezing during a cold snap like the almond did. All is not lost, of course, as the blossoms did feed many a hungry bee and that's a good thing!. The vegetables growing in the garden right now such as carrots, cilantro, onions and garlic are adapted to the cold so even though they look a little droopy, they'll spring back to life when the temps warm up again. The healthiest plants and animals in the garden are always those that can adapt to these weather changes. The same goes with us. It's going to be an interesting (and not always easy) time on this planet with climate change so it's best that we all learn to be flexible and adapt to what is. And to keep on loving no matter what. For me, I learn these lessons best in the garden...
It's New Year's eve and I've discovered a summer bloomer in the garden! A beautiful pink Echinacea is blooming in the midst of the winter season, even after a hard frost. As a flower essence the energy signature of Echinacea is "deep healing on all levels". After the tumultuous year we've experienced in 2017, I feel it's gift and message is one of renewal. There will be a deep healing going on in 2018. In numerology 2018 is an 11 year, a master number which signifies illumination and inspiration. As our hearts heal and open to the new year I think we'll be inspired to do great things. A grassroots movement of change is underway as more and more awaken to a better, more gentle way of treating each other and the Earth. The first stirrings of unity are being felt in the collective. The powers that be do not have our best interests at heart,and as a people we're starting to see that. It's time for a change. Our heart light and love will grow brighter as the ones with dark intent continue their lies and poisons and games of control. In the years ahead they'll be no match to our brilliance but this is just the beginning. The seeds of love have been planted and it's up to us to nurture them and help them grow. Just like my beautiful summer bloomer on a winter day,the light and love will continue to shine no matter what. It has only just begun...
The winter solstice closes the door on the events of the year. It is the quiet pause between fall and winter, the time to sleep more, dream more and create our lives anew. Many will be happy to close the door on this crazy year. It has been a tumultuous time for all of us. In the U.S. it has been a game-changer on all fronts. No matter what side of the fence you sit on (or don't!) the political scene has been intense and people are waking up, speaking out and making their voices heard. The next day after the new administration was sworn in, we had a most incredible Women's March, supported by husbands,fathers sons, friends. And now as the year closes,we have the "me too' movement where many are speaking up, both women and men, bringing the atrocities of hidden (or not so hidden) abuse out into the open. Justice is being served.
On the weather front,my oh my,we've had an interesting year on our planet. Yes,the climate is changing and a huge balancing and cleansing is underway. And it has not been easy. All of our hearts and arms have stretched to comfort those who are suffering. There have been huge clean-ups and loss of homes during hurricanes,floods and fires.People and animals have been displaced and it has been heart wrenching at times. This "re-boot" of lives is a huge theme these days. Another theme is the story of world-wide abuse,greed and power which is now fully visible for all to see. It held sway for too long,hidden in the trenches,and now the abuse is coming out into the light of day. You can't change what you can't see and now it's changing. And that's a good thing.
In my conversations with Gaia, she is in the midst of her own birthing process, just like we are, and it's intense. But she is happy for the light and that things are changing. She asks us to love ourselves deeply so that we may love her more fully. That's how the abuse of the Earth will end, one healed heart at a time.It will take work on our part and courage as we support each other through this heart healing process. It's not easy as we uncover our painful childhood wounds, unworthiness issues and sometimes abuse. We'll need each other more than ever to help each other through this.The gift will be a planet full of open hearts,as our love spills out into the world and to our precious Earth.The wars we wage with each other and the Earth will fall away as do the poisons of war. Poison doesn't exist in a state of unity, only through division. The honeybees speak of this often with me. They ask me to spread the message of peace so they may thrive. Because they live in unity, a bit of poison brought home to the hive,will kill the hive. The same goes with us.
On this Solstice night, let us dream the dream of healing and connection to all. Let us sing the song and dance the dance of Unity that we learn from the beehive. The bees know how to live. It's now time for us to follow their lead...
Hi, I am Marianne and a lover of all things Nature! I love my gardens and I know you have that love of nature in you too!