Happy Good Friday everyone.
April is such a pretty month in our little potted city garden. So far this month we have been getting a lot of blooms and growth. I missed a cactus bloom the other day. I saw the huge flower wilted away and was so disappointed that I wasn’t up with the rooster. Most cacti only bloom at night but you still can catch the bloom if you get up right before the sun comes up. It is worth it. Huge soft pastel flowers that look like they come form outer space or something. Gorgeous flowers.
The grape vines are taking over the tree in our garden. Eventually the vines will grown around the tiny leaves in the tree. The tree is starting to get tiny yellow pollen balls everywhere that will eventually make our pool turn yellow. We have to clean our pool multiple times throughout the day when the tree is full of yellow pollen balls everywhere. It is a beautiful site to see, especially right before the pollen falls and the yellow with the color of the blues in the pool is so striking
We started ordering and buying more seeds this month, as well as letting some of our plants go to seed as we have been collecting seeds for years now. We exchange with other gardeners and experiment with different seeds from several places to see which work the best. We even harvest seeds from some of our local grown fruits and veggies we get at the farmers markets.
We bought a variety of seed packages from different stores and online companies. I’ll let you know which ones do the best. We even bought some seeds from the dollar store, they were 4 for $1.25.
I made lemon cleaner this month. So easy to make and so much better not only for us but the environment as well. Just slice up some lemons and fill a glass mason jar with the slices, then pour in white vinegar. Store for a few weeks, then strain out the lemons and pour cleaner back into a glass jar. The concentrated lemon cleaner should be deluded ½ cleaner to 2 cups of water. If you want it really strong use 1 cup cleaner to 2 cups water.
You can also use the peels and that includes orange peels.
Don’t forget to use plastic lids when storing the mix.
Every Easter we have a tradition here in our garden of putting together pots of plants from our garden to give to others. I really enjoy this and it has been something I have done since a kid. When I was a kid I used to save old glass coke bottles and go down to the swap meet and buy a variety of dried flowers. They sold itty bitty dried flowers that looked like miniature pom pom flowers. They still sell them today but their price has gone up so much that it’s cheaper to pick your own, then dry and dye them yourself. Now we just grow our own plants and use clippings from them to re-pot and decorate with.
I painted small Terra cot ta pots half white using white chalk paint. Then I made pom pom chicks and bunnies, glued them onto wooden sticks, and used them as Easter deor to add to the potted plants. I wrapped the pots in brown paper bag paper (free or really cheap as a wrapping paper) and tied the paper wraps with red vintage bows that had white polka dots on them.
Our plants that we grow inside are doing well. We use a grow light for them. Sometimes early in the morning I will take some out and water them while they dry in natural light but not direct sunlight because our sun here in Arizona is pretty intense. The indoor plants have to come in before the noon sun hits. Inside house plants help take toxins out of your home environment’s air.
I still have that jar full of colorful gel beads that my neighbor gave me but the plants do better in real water or dirt I have discovered. They are really pretty though , especially when the sunlight goes through them.
The weeds and pollen are making it really hard for anyone who suffers from allergies. It is so bad that I can’t keep our doors and windows open during the day because we all end up sneezing. When it gets hot the pollution here is very high, we have poor air quality here in our city.
I worry about all the people that are moving here and the factories they are going to start building in our city. This is one of the reasons we will eventually have to leave the city. With asthma is gets harder each year with so much pollution. They estimate that 10 million people will be living in our city before long. Where is the water coming from?
I love all the weeds though. The weed I am sharing with you today is not good for animals. It creates little sticky pieces called fox tails that can get stuck in your pets ears. Right now they are little yellow seeded flowers but they will turn. Even plants that look so innocent and safe on the outside, beautiful in fact, have potential to harm …we just can’t see it yet. So many situations in life like that. We think something is safe, yet it’s not, Look how innocent these flowers look. What else are many looking at and seeing as innocent and non threatening that has the potential to hurt us?
We still have many projects to finish in our garden. We are trying to increase our bee hive since the company my husband ordered from is no longer delivering across the country for security reasons.
Oh…and something weird has been going on, well not weird, not sure how to describe it. Weird is just a word I tend to use a lot when communicating. My husband ordered some items, seeds and chicks. Then the orders were canceled online. It worried my husband as shortages are happening everywhere here in our country.
My husband called around and checked other companies to replace the orders that had been canceled. One company he has always ordered from is from the Ukraine. The paying service told my husband that because the seed order was coming from R ( think it is so controversial that you can’t even say their name right now without being attacked) they could not send it to America, yet it wasn’t coming from there. This message wasn’t from the direct company either, which makes things even more strange.
Then the seeds just showed up one day along with our cash going back into our account. So we got free seeds. We were told we weren’t going to get the seeds and the next week they showed up. The seed company is very professional and kind but the money transfer company they deal with thinks they are from the wrong country right now, you know the big R, so they won’t do money transfers for them, even though they are from the country the whole world is allowed and suppose to help right now. The company is not even close to the border with that other country. Just strange the whole thing.
Then the same thing happened with some chicks we were ordering. The company sent out a text that all orders were canceled because of shortages and quarantines. There is a bird flu problem in some areas of our country. My husband ordered some more chicks somewhere else.
The next day the original company emailed my husband back that his chicks were not canceled and they are looking into why a text was sent out saying that.
“ We are so sorry, did you still want the order?” They texted back.
Now my husband has two orders of chicks coming. We will share them or sell them once raised. This is what we have done in the past when we have too much of something. We have given away chickens before. God wants us to have two orders it looks like.
The company said that someone, not them, had canceled all their orders and wrote that false text up but they have no idea why or who it was. This is a father and son chicken business. Their chickens are all under a roof, and under strict safety protections, never exposed to outside wild birds. They know about the situation with reports of a bird flu. They test their birds all the time and they are okay.
Everyone who goes in and out has to pass through several doors and be sterilized with Clorox. We have always bought our chickens from them and never have our chicks ever been sick or have new chicks brought sickness to our chickens. Again, this is all weird, the whole deceptive way all this is happening…who is interfering with orders and why?
And then the craziest thing of all was when a package showed up with bee hive supplies in it. It was like Christmas for my husband as he unpacked it. No return address or where it all came from. The only thing he can think of is that it must have come from someone, a company from another country, another country many are being told to hate sadly, not R…but Ch. The company was a couple of people in a chat group my husband was apart of, it was all about farming and bees.
Some people in charged of the company asked my husband a question about what he thinks with all these people turning against each other. Seems several countries are being told to hate each other, a lot in fact. My husband said we all need to look our for each other, all people, all nationalities. Like I always say too, and remind my kids, Love your neighbors. We are all brothers and sisters and God’s children.
A few days later a couple boxes show up with bee supplies. No information to who sent them.
“ Well how do they know your address.” I asked my husband.
We know about VPN’s and we try to be careful with our names and information. When my husband went back to find the old post of his where he was communicating with that farming chat group, his whole post was gone, the whole thing. It wasn’t bad, just a friendly chat…but it was all removed. Again…why, what is going on?
My husband left a message in the group after that, that who ever was the person who sent him all those beehive supplies…Thank you. I also am putting it out there for anyone who may be reading this…Thank you, to everyone out there who are kind, spreading kindness even to strangers.
Who ever you are, thank you from the bottom of our hearts. It’s our turn now, to pay it forward as they say.
Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unaware.
That’s about it for our garden adventures this month. Remember to keep producing every day, life is beautiful and there is so much here for us to learn and do. Have a great Good Friday everyone. May God bless you and always keep you all safe.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16