Friday, May 20, 2011
HERE’S A FORK IN YOUR EYE!
No, I’m not getting mean or sadistic. I’m just trying to keep the squirrels out of my flower pots. Inevitably, the day after planting my porch pots, the squirrels dig like crazy in the soft soil. Why? I don’t know why, but maybe because they want to hide seeds (although I haven’t found any) or are looking for something that they planted last year. Or maybe they too like to garden. Anyway, I put plastic forks, prongs up, in any bare spaces and it deters those pests from digging my flowers up. If I don’t, every morning I find my plants torn from the soil and thrown to the porch floor. And a big mess of soil everywhere. It looks kind of weird in the beginning of the growing season, and my visitors always ask what’s with the forks in the pots, but once the plants fill in, you don’t even see the forks. This year I decided to use a lot of my house plants to fill the porch and deck pots. I divided the Asparagus fern and although they are small now, I know that they will quickly fill out and provide interest. The Wandering Jew also looks a little sparse but I added some impatiens to fill in the holes, along with the forks!
We finally got the fish pond clean with a new filter and pump. Actually, it wasn’t new, but was from a house that my son just bought. But it was new to me and much stronger than my old pump. I was afraid that a stronger pump would make the pond into a vortex and the fish would go spinning around as though they were in a toilet or a whirlpool. But that’s not happening and they are swimming around happily and love going under the small waterfall. I have 2 koi, 3 goldfish and a new little baby that is still too shy to come out in the open. I see him every once in a while hiding in the plant roots. The new frog seems pretty friendly and maybe we can train him to eat worms out of our hands like we did 3 summers ago. He was the hit of the Silver Lake Pond Tour and the kids eagerly dug worms out of the garden to feed him.
The hoophouses are still up, but if it EVER stops raining, I’ll take them down for the summer. Actually, I’ve been using them as a bit of an umbrella so that the soil doesn’t become so saturated. It appears that the flat-topped hoophouse is pretty much ripped from the winter winds, but since it lasted 3 years, I can’t complain. The rounded hoophouse is still OK and should last at least another year. I’m not sure if I’ll make a new one to replace the flat-top though. One hoophouse of greens seems to be more than enough. The tomato plants in the rounded hoophouse are touching the ceiling and need to be free. I think that they are as anxious as I am for the warmer, sunnier weather. No more rain! No more rain! No more rain!