Monday, March 30, 2009

The SAGBUTT Zone

I've been delayed enough to already have some excellent reports back from the March 22nd SAGBUTT gathering. Just up to me to post the group photo! So here we are, in our Zone!

Melanthia's summary of the event even covers the fur advice and what's up with the signs, above, that Karen was able to bring for us. Karen's write-up reminds us how we (& gardening) can change the world, especially if we don't forget about seedling gym exercises, and includes a preview of plants that may show up at a future meeting. Matron, international reporter, has a post up about it too (love the sign) and can share WA seed shopping location, if SAGBUTTees are still in search of just a few more seeds.

You can see from the photos the amazing variety of plants, seeds and treasures that went with all the advise and ideas filling the room. I have sprouts up from Karen's broccoli and will be planting more seeds this week. Thanks to everyone for the great discussions, goodies, and for planting all the gardening ideas, assuming spring does eventually arrive.

Matron - Down on the Allotment, visiting from the UK & friend D.

Mark Saturday, April 18th down on the calendar. Curmudgeon & WingNut have a location convenient to the Seattle Tilth garden. Just in time to see some spring sprouts (maybe).

So, SAGBUTTees, what do you think about a flash mob guerrilla gardening event in prime summer, downtown Seattle? Do you think we could leave a nice NW impression for many of the summer visitors?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

SAGBUTT Garden Expansion


Did anyone else come home and plant just a few seeds? (Karen's broccoli, for me.)

Or perhaps had a stop at a charity shop for a little fur / faux fur piece?

SAGBUTT swap in progress, above. Thanks, SAGBUTTees (far & near), for all the contributed tips, plants, discussions, seeds, signs, and more. This blogger will have to post more about it later! (any takers on explaining the fur?) Enjoy the treasures & ideas!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

It's SAGBUTT Sunday!


Here is Aloe Vera getting ready for the garden blogger gathering tomorrow. Hope you will be there too!

How do you like the handy potting tray? Is it nifty enough to forgive me for a little disorganization at the SAGBUTT meeting tomorrow? However, with the international visitor, seeds, signs, plants and gardening chatter going on, hopefully, maybe no one will notice....

You see, we received a call this morning to see if DH would like to help relocate some wood posts from a location being cleared out. And maybe a waterfall hike and geocache to go along with it? Well, DH asked if I wanted to go, too. Posts lead to some other treasures, and this bin was one of them. I hope you understand! We never made it to the waterfall and geocache. I think a return trip is in order!

MEETING DETAILS:
What: Seattle Area Garden Bloggers United to Talk (SAGBUTT)
When: March 22, 2009 1 pm - 3:30 pm
Where: Bellevue Regional Library, Room 41111 110th Avenue NE, Bellevue, 98004 Map link here
Bring: Seeds, etc. to swap, catalogs to browse/discuss, gardening questions, or just yourself!
Provided: Envelopes for sharing seeds, light refreshments.
More info in this post and at Karen's Greenwalks blog.

Bonus VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY March 22nd:
Karen has noted a garden related volunteer opportunity that you might like to pair up with our SAGBUTT meeting. Bellevue Botanical Garden is looking for help to pot up plants for their annual sale, and they will feed us lunch for free!
Here's the info:March 22, Sunday Potting Up Party 10 am - 4 pm
Bellevue Botanical Garden 12001 Main St, Bellevue. Volunteer Page Link

Friday, March 20, 2009

is it...

time for another vacation yet?

I hope to have a mini-break tomorrow, visiting the garden blogs around the world! See you then.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Costa Rica #2 - Living Fences

This post is stepping back a day from Costa Rica #1. The first morning, we left San Jose and headed north. The beaches will come along later! It wasn't long before we saw coffee and fruit farms and then hillside farms and pastures.
We started noticing the trees growing in the fence lines along the road. Then we realized the trees where the fence posts! Were they intential or were they wood fence posts that sprouted due to the climate (as willow does at home)?
Planted, we decided, but often purposefully kept trimmed. The one above has other plants growing on it, too.

Flowers growing in the fence row.

It also wasn't long before we noticed the cows and their bird friends. Every cow would have a few to many bird friends. Apparently, the cattle egrets finds more to eat when their have cow friends to stir up the bugs. You know you almost waited too long for a vacation when cows and birds prove to be so entertaining! The tree in the center of the photo above is also a fence post.
More fence line flowers.


Above, this area had many fields where the fence posts had become tree rows.

Fertile soil and hillside farms.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

March Bloom Day & Creative Weather Writing

Yes! There are some open flowerettes on this tree, under the snow. I checked, though, and none of my prior years' March Bloom Day participants are blooming today, well, except the heather. See 2008, 2007

The camellia is usually one of the first bloomers and I don't find a bud even tempted to open. It must have known this weather was coming. I'll be watching it closely every day now for signs of hope. Visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens to find links to the other bloom day bloggers.

The garden today.

Weather forecast for the week:
Today: Windy, rain or snow showers
Tomorrow: Rain and snow showers
Tuesday: Mostly cloudy, showers
Wednesday: (and here is the new twist on things) Rain at times!
Thursday: Morning showers, partly sunny
How to cope? There is enough likelihood of error that we can still hope for more sun breaks.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Plant Progress

Molly - Look what your black willow cuttings are doing! Do those little white roots mean I could have my own shrub?


Most of the the Sungold tomato seeds planted last Sunday sprouted by Wednesday. The rest by Thursday or Friday. I think every seed planted did sprout. Not bad for 2007 seeds.

Being warmth lovers, I start them in the "oven" under my kitchen sink, but must be sure to move them to light when they sprout. Some of the tomatoes stayed in the oven longer and are now leggy. Hopefully, they'll work it all out.

Just today, however, I witnessed my indoor garden pest in action. Maria edited out one of the tomatoes in the pot. I should be thankful. It is so hard sometimes to thin the crop. Instead, I'll try to divide the seedlings which probably stresses them. I didn't expect them all to sprout so I planted 2 or 3 seeds per pot. Matron's post reminds me that I must plant peas asap!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Costa Rica #1 - Blossoms

While I am waiting for seeds to sprout and snow to melt, I thought I'd share a few sights from Costa Rica. Only thing is... the seeds are sprouting already and the snow is melting. I'll post Costa Rica anyway! Our first morning out of San Jose and we were ready to do some volcano spotting in the Arenal area. Whoops! Rain and clouds. So we headed off to a good breakfast spot. What else did we find there? Brugmansia (I think)!

Immediately, I thought of Libby. So, Libby - are these the flowers that you grow? I think you would love all of the tropical Costa Rica plants!
That's the brugmansia bush, below, there by the banana plants. We saw a lot of very happy flowers in Costa Rica that struggle even in the best of our summers back home.

Costa Rica proved to be an excellent excursion beyond the garden fence.

Monday, March 09, 2009

SAGBUTT March Meet & Swap

Calling all Seattle Area Gardeners!
(visiting gardeners too, but no gardening ants* please)
Our next SAGBUTT meeting is scheduled for Sunday, March 22. Thanks to Molly, who stepped in during my pre-vacation haze, we have a reserved location!

A seed swap seems to be on the top of the unofficial agenda for this meeting. Plus, we hope to have our first visiting blogger, Matron from the UK. Visit her blog, Down on the Allotment, and prepare your vegetable growing questions. The UK climate is quite like our own!

We'll also have some time to discuss any gardening/blogging topics desired, and planning for the next meeting or two. (read about Feb. fun here!)

Please leave a comment if you hope to attend and with any suggestions for this meeting. Feel free to list any seeds available or desired in the comments, also.

MEETING DETAILS:
What: Seattle Area Garden Bloggers United to Talk (SAGBUTT)
When: March 22, 2009 1 pm - 3:30 pm
Where: Bellevue Regional Library, Room 4
1111 110th Avenue NE, Bellevue, 98004 Map link here

Bring: Seeds, etc. to swap, catalogs to browse/discuss, gardening questions.
Provided: Envelopes for sharing seeds, light refreshments.

Future meeting plans: We tentatively slated the third full weekend of each month, alternating between Saturday and Sunday. This makes the next tentative event April 18th. However, plans are subject to change to fit with special gardening events, etc. Attendees are planning to take turns coordinating the meetings/events.

SAGBUTT notices, discussions: Google groups SAGBUTT page and/or see the Facebook group for Seattle Area Garden Bloggers.

Bonus VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY March 22nd:
Karen has noted a garden related volunteer opportunity that you might like to pair up with our SAGBUTT meeting. Bellevue Botanical Garden is looking for help to pot up plants for their annual sale, and they will feed us lunch for free! Here's the info:
March 22, Sunday Potting Up Party 10 am - 4 pm

Bellevue Botanical Garden 12001 Main St, Bellevue. Volunteer Page Link

Help pot up and prepare plants from the Border for the Spring Plant Sale. Opportunities for all skill levels and abilities, including labeling, etc. Lunch will be provided. Question? or to let them know you will attend, contact George Lasch at George@crows-hop.com

FINALLY, the little guy, below, is ready for a trim. Would anyone like some aloe vera starts? I can bring them to the meeting.
*Leaf cutter ants cut and chew leaves into mulch that is used to fertilize fungi, whose spores the ants then eat! It's a wonder there are any leaves left in Costa Rica.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Signs, signs

It's amazing that the giant rhubarb leaves start out looking like this. If not for the wind and snow flurries, I'd love to be outside. Instead, I'm doing the seed starting project in the kitchen. Rhubarb needs some company in the garden.

Snowdrops are open in time to see more snow. Hopefully, it will be the last of the snow!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Home again

Finally found my way home. Had to take the long route to maximize flora, fauna and sunshine! And, of course, observe some garden inspiration. I'll have some posts to share, later. That "Vancuver" sign points closest to home.

Today, I could smell spring in the air (in spite of the snow predictions for the weekend).