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Fall Monsoon?
Gardens of Weedin
Let there be Light
monsoon continues
My Time of Year!
Root Cellar Ho!
SeasonalAffectiveDisorder
seed starting
Spring is in the air !
Starting to fertilize Green Babe
SummersWaiting2arrive
Sun-Hungry
Time For Planting O Green
Tomato takeoff
Tuesday Sept. 30th frost?
What's Growing On
Come and Grow with Bonnie The Plant Lady
Saturday, 14 November 2015
www.benefitsoflight.com
Now Playing: You Are MySunshine
Topic: SeasonalAffectiveDisorder

Days of October with any sun at all, 9.  Kind of a bummer if you've Green Eyes like me and are solar powered much like my plant children.

It was a traumatic experience emptying the greenhouse again this fall like all falls. Husband is not accepting of having plants near the windows that they so desperately need the light from.  He goes through this claustrophobic frenzy this time of year every one of the 18 years we have been together. I just don't understand him.  having my plants around me is like him having his 7 pianos and thousands of cds and record albums all around him and I accept that. 


Posted by sunshinegardens at 11:42 AM EST
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Sunday, 18 July 2010
weedy July
Mood:  chillin'
Now Playing: The de-humidifier
Topic: Gardens of Weedin


 

Summer fun included celebrating Bonnie's

 

B-day Big Five-Oh!

 

She is not over the hill she is at the top

 

and ready to roll!  Picking raspberries is tapering off.  The rhubarb is huge and we have yet to make a pie.  Raspberry icee smoothies daily.  purslane sorrel and carrot salad with blueberries for breakfast. mmmmm. picking roses:  Reba Mackentire, hot cocoa and wild blue yonder.  Gorgeously fragrant one and all.  finished doing a bit more pruning on the hardy rose garden.  Time to get rid of dead and crossing branches and hips cut back to five leaflet leaves so they have more flowers this month yet.  Doing our last fertilizing of perennials trees and shrubs by the end of this month so new growth can harden off.  It is time to re-peanutbutter our electric fence and be certain to shut all the gates so deer don't come in and nibble.  mulching the rest of the gardens this week.  May be coming soon to a garden near you to fettilize, weed prune and deadhead.  We received over 2 inches of rain this past week so weeds pull easily.  The forsythia bushes are being pruned so they don't shade the raspberries so much. 

Now is a super time to plant perennials

trees and shrubssuch as the above pictured

 

Northern Lights azalea as we have a fine

selection and they are all 20% off with a

 

printed copy of this blog or mention of the

 

ad on public television you get a free 4"

 

pot of Sand Coreopsis lanceolata, a golden

 

flowered perennial beauty!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 11:43 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, 19 July 2010 12:07 AM EDT
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Monday, 22 February 2010
Icicles Outside,Greensicles Inside
Mood:  d'oh
Now Playing: Chickadee Hi Honey Song
Topic: Starting to fertilize Green Babe
Gardens in the miniature are bursting the most appealing green!  Buds are popping and my mini peach is forming a shooter marble sized fruit.  Our Skewer Rosemary is ready to have cuttings taken to root for spring sales. Jasmine is after the bunnies camping out under the camper.  Bad Bunnies! Go gettum Jazzie!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 8:35 AM EST
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Sunday, 24 January 2010
PushingSpring
Mood:  bright
Now Playing: Lorrie Line
Topic: seed starting

So far it is the Sedge seedlings that have a jump on things in the pushing spring department.  What are sedges you might ask.  They are sort of like grasses only sedges mostly have triangular stems and grasses have round stems.  We grow ten kinds here at sunshinegardens.tripod.com mostly for shoreline plantings as we do a lot of that.  Sedges have robust spaghetti like roots that grow down deeeplyto hold a shoreline in place should wind or ice or waves come along and threaten to cut into the shoreline.  Most shoreland owners figure they paid good money for their shoreland and they want to keep it there.  I agree and so do the sedges.  

I like to interplant with marsh milkweed( Asclepias incarnata)and blue flag irises(Iris versicolor) along with grasses such as Prairie Cord Grass(Spartina pectinata).  Those latin names have you scratching your head saying why bother with the latin names? Foe example the latin name helps me identify one Asclepias from another.  Asclepias incarnata I mentioned before likes to be planted where it can send its roots down into a lake or shallow water table or moist soil while Asclepias tuberosa Butterflyweed likes to send its deep fleshy roots down  deep too but it thrives in dry soil to the point of croaking if it gets too moist.  

I am also seeding some of the Butterflyweed in my special sandy soil mix without perlite.   I don't use perlite in this seed starting mix as perlite tends to float away when watered or blow away if I plant the resulting plugs on a sandy windy site leaving the tiny yet fleshy roots exposed to the elements and good old minnesota frigid temps which I hear we are in for more of below zero temps.  Batten the hatches as the full moon cometh so do the colder temps!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 8:56 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, 24 January 2010 10:51 PM EST
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Thursday, 14 January 2010
New Year, New Sun!
Mood:  spacey
Now Playing: Show tunes on www.kaxe.org
Topic: Sun-Hungry

Springy winter greetings! Yes it may seem like I am pushing spring.  I grow more and more perennials every year and the greenhouses are going to be packed again this year so I have to start in mid January if I am to accomplish this joyful task.  Fellow and gal spring pushers give a listen to www.kaxe.org the last Thursday of the month to chat about the pushing spring opener January 28th at 8:10 am.  We are thawing out the potting soil and seed starter mixtures in the garage, alias the new work area.  We keep it at 40 degrees now to store seeds and thaw soil.  We will also be at the Back To Basics fifth anual featuring the topic Warming Up Winter.  Forty-five workshops are featured.  Bonnie teaches Attract the birds that warm our hearts, Wind Snow and Sun Breaks, and Houseplant Warmth.  Check out www.happydancingturtle.org for registration and workshop schedule.  Here is a Queen's Tears Bromeliad in full bloom in our house now.  You might be lucky enough to win one at the BackTo Basics at the Pine River Backus School January 30 if you come to the Houseplant Warmth  workshop.  Y'all Come now, Hear?


Posted by sunshinegardens at 4:12 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, 14 January 2010 4:58 PM EST
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Wednesday, 21 October 2009
A Dark and Rainy October
Mood:  caffeinated
Now Playing: www.kaxe.org
Topic: Fall Monsoon?
We are waiting for the sun here in northern MN.  I am tempted to start piling up some leaves but am certain that more will fall.  We have gotten five inches of rain in the last three weeks. Time to keep thinking Sunny! I have been collecting seeds in my loyal kayak when we are not planting shores and yards.  At least I don't have to water the plants in! I have a new view from my new drawing room window in our loft we had built above our garage.  I was cramming in too many plants in the root cellar.  It will be fantastic to have 9 new sunny windows that is when old Sol decides to shine again!  Come on Sun!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 11:14 AM EDT
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Saturday, 8 August 2009
Dog Daze
Mood:  bright
Now Playing: Peace and quiet
Topic: monsoon continues

Tis the season for more weedin' all right.  There must be some zen in weeding involving getting all the muscle groups working together like a well oiled machine.  Some of the jewelweed in the raspberry patch are approaching 7 ft.  tall.  Off with their heads.  I prune them off at ground level and use the tops as mulch.  Thankfully they have not gone to seed yet or it wound be a jewelweed forest. 

Planting some late season turnips, spinach, carrots this week come hell or high water...

Jasmine our Jack Russell/Rat terrier cross is ten months old this week.  We had a super early morning treat together yesterday.  She sat patiently waiting on a downed log next to the most abundantly loaded serviceberry trees I have ever seen. Jasmine likes serviceberries or saskatoons better than any old dog biscuit. MMMM  they taste and look sort of like blueberries only they can be picked standing up. They are right next to our power line right of way.  If I had not put up that no spraying herbicides sign Crow wing power sprayers probaably would have sprayed the beautiful fruti bearers.  I can get rid of the trees that will grow to block the right of way myself and leave the yummy saskatoons along the edge.

Get ready with the neti pot in hand.  I just visited the roadside of a client's home down in brainerd and found my nemisis ragweed about to pollen out.  We only got 1/2 inch of rain last night. still raining now.  Humidity 100%.  Got a new de-humidifyer for the basement office area.  New plant room addition going well.  It is getting floored this week.  I will be speaking at the Emily City hall at a picnic there.  Bringing some of our plant friends, a raincoat and that summer picnic appetite for sure!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 8:47 AM EDT
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Monday, 22 June 2009
Sum Sum Summertime is here with the monsoon
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: Natalie Merchant mother nature on the run in1970's
Topic: Tomato takeoff

"Hoping for a replacement when the Sun burst through the sky" Natalie  Merchant sings.  Taking a bit of a rain day from gardening for others and hoping for the energy to do my own garden and house keeping today.  "...All in a Dream.  Flying mother natures silver seed to a new home  in the sun"  I have quite a few Joe Pye flowers but need more so time to do some more seeding of those butterfly magnets and others like Asclepias tuberosa Butterfly Weed and Liatris aspera Button blazing star need to be seeded now in order to have plants for this time next year.  Brings new meaning for the phrase plan ahead eh?  Golden Alexanders are in bloom(pictured below) among the hostas, azaleas and Ninebark shrubs making our east side bed a veritable butterfly haven with a few hummingbirds thrown in for good measure.  If we build it, they will come back.  If we leave our habitats sterile that is all they will be.  Forking our  quack grass to make way for the 2' tall all ready 'maters in the main garden.  MMM can almost taste them!The butterfly gardens bring the pollenators around for a larger tomato crop, Ya follow?


Posted by sunshinegardens at 12:58 PM EDT
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Monday, 8 June 2009
Wearing Long Johns In June
Mood:  chillin'
Now Playing: Sunshine On My Shoulders
Topic: SummersWaiting2arrive

We are still transplanting tomato seedlings today along with potting up an endangered species called Shooting stars.  They look like tiny cyclamen flowers.  Young shooting stars bloom white.  As the plant ages the blossoms turn pinky lavender. 

Leaves are up early and go dormant shortly after blooming. They like living in prairie or savanna areas.  I have them on the Southeast side of our house where they receive most of the day sun.

Pretty pretty pretty!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 8:08 PM EDT
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Monday, 13 April 2009
Looking for sun in all the right places
Mood:  bright
Now Playing: Tornado Bob on www.kaxe.org
Topic: Let there be Light

After Easter Greetings!  We spent the weekend with relatives celebrating the usually warm spring opener by observing Lake Andrew at last turn dark and open up a bit in the center.  We had several evergreens that have been blocking the light that gets to the greenhouses so we cut them down.  We had heavy hearts about it but will plant nannyberries, elderberries and other shorter than the evergreens shrubs in their place.  The greenhouses are now even brighter places to be.  Plants inside enjoy daytime temps of at least 75 degrees before the vents are opened.  The evening thermostats are set at 55 degrees.  This encourages stocky not spindley growth.  Folks now raising seedlings in their homes can turn the pots seedlings are in a 1/4  turn to encourage balanced not leaning growth.  If plantlights are being used they are raised up to twoor three  inches above the tops of the plants, raising them as the plants grow .  Timers allow for a daylength of sixteen hours.  In the greenhouse where Basil and more heat-loving plants are grown Lamps extend the day-length to that sixteen hours.  The presence of some aphids is reminding me to decrease Nitrogen and increase phosphorous and potash and trace elements in "foodilizer" applied to plants.Aphids are knocked off with a strong spray of water followed by a spray of insecticidal soap or Pyrethrin/Rotenone , or Neem oil spray mixed according to label directions.   Apply every week for three weeks in a row  to knock out future generations of the aphids. 

My mother in law was pleased to be presented with Marilyns salad mint that bears her name as well as a couple pots of sunny blooming daffodils. 

Don't forget to spend some time on the garden bench!


Posted by sunshinegardens at 11:30 AM EDT
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