Thursday, June 14, 2012

If you look closely you can see a woodpecker in the crook of the tree

 My dreams of having a yard that is attractive to birds and butterflies are coming true.  I have more birds this year then I've ever had - at least 3 different varieties of woodpeckers, goldfinches, blue jays, a cardinal pair, at least one bluebird, hummingbirds, doves, tufted titmouse (mice?)...there are probably others that I can't think of.  Unfortunately I am also having issues with raccoons.  They've been into my chickens - have had a couple as a midnight snack.  Now they are coming up and messing with my birdfeeders - that is a new issue with me.  Thankfully Dipstick is willing to set traps.  So far he's caught two coons and at least two cats - the cats are freed with the hope they've learned their lesson.  Last night the coon tripped the trap and moved it but was not caught in it.  Dipstick will need to weight it down tonight.
Goldfinch on feeder outside window
While I've got both annuals and perennials growing I still have work to do.  My "flower ring" is slowly becoming more full - added some columbine to it this year.  My blanket flowers are back and blooming some, coneflowers are up, pinkish chrysthanamum is up and blooming, white shasta daisy is blooming.  I've added some other annuals - as well as have a 3 ft area that is currently covered in mulch and cardboard.  Oh yes...forgot the salvia.  There is still plenty of weeds to pull throughout this area.  (No picture of the flower ring this time)

The coneflowers are up in the flowerbeds as are the black-eyed susans.  Both are just beginning to come into bloom. Those are slow due to lack of rain.  Zinnias, snapdragons and moss roses are also blooming.  My brake drum flowerpots are filled with blooming annuals. 
This is just one corner of one raised bed.  Irises are in the background here

It is very very dry this year - crops are stunted.  B said this evening that he was glad we did not get a full garden put in.  When I water I use 10-15 gallon milk jugs as we don't have a hose that works.  Therefore if it's not a new planting or in a pot it does not get watered often. 

Tomatoes in the background, zuchinni in the front

I did do something different with my tomato plants - I'm excited to see how they turn out.  So far I'm really happy with it.  S was studying online and find something called a "tomato ring" or a "Japanese tomato ring".  Basically it's tomatoes grown off the ground in a ring that is filled with soil and compost.  I have 6 tomato plants in mine and while I don't have any fruit on them yet they are growing well.  Next year I will put cardboard around the bottom of the ring so that the soil stays in. 


Karen said...

Love the photos. You've been busy. I haven't been out to take a photo of my patch yet.

Needled Mom said...

Hi Edith. You are a "no reply" blogger so I will answer your question about a streptocarpus here. It reminds me of an african violet with fussy leaves and flowers that sprout up from the center. You can restart them by rooting a leaf.

I would love to sit and enjoy the birds in your backyard. We love ours too.

We've had problems with raccoons in the past too. They are so pesky, especially when they go after the chickens. Grrr.

Looking forward to seeing how the tomatoes do this year. I have done a similar "odd" planting with my strawberries. I planted them in a wooden construction pallet. The rabbits get them on the ground so I will see how this works.