Wednesday, May 6, 2015

May 2015 Garden Journal and Backyard Birds

The weather so far this spring has been wonderful for gardening, so we've been out in our garden as often as possible, and are getting quite a bit done. Here's what's been going on in our garden this past couple of weeks.

One of the first things we did last week was clean out all of our raised beds of anything left from last year, and any weeds that had grown, then we amended the soil with manure, and got the beds all leveled out. I got all of my peppers planted, and although it is a bit early I am hoping they do well. I am getting in my garden a bit early this year since I am scheduled for gallbladder removal surgery at the end of May, and will not be able to garden much while I recover. I am waiting until the last minute to plant squash and beans as they seem to do better in nice warm soil, but I did plant some marigolds in the beds were the beans and squash will be to help deter pests, and because they look so pretty growing with the green veggies!

My garlic is doing nicely, including the elephant garlic, some of which has planted itself in other sections of the garlic bed, looks like we'll have a nice supply of garlic this year!

One of my beds I decided to devote to flowers, the bachelor buttons planted themselves from last years plants, and I added cosmos, nasturtium, and snapdragons, all favorite flowers of mine. This bed also happens to be right outside of the my kitchen sink window so it will be nice to look at while I'm doing dishes. :)

One change I am making this year is swapping out my plastic planters to wooden barrel type planters. We planted some of our veggies in large buckets a few years back, you can see them in this post from 2011. Unfortunately, I have found that they just don't hold up to the sun as well as I would like, and they were starting to crack and fade. Although they are a great inexpensive way to start container gardening, if you can invest in a more environmentally friendly wooden or clay pot I would go with that. I hate waste like this and I feel bad that they will end up in a landfill- lesson learned.  For now I will set aside the ones still growing our garlic, until it is ready to harvest, transplant my chives to a bigger barrel, and use the dirt to fill me new pots.

Here are some of my wooden planters, the whiskey barrels were moved from another part of my garden, some were used previously for flowers, another had a blueberry that wasn't doing too well. I have planted a couple of grape plants that I am going to experiment with in hopes I can grow grapes in containers, another is planted with purple and green basil, and the far end is my new maple tree which I posted about last month along with my dry river bed project. I think the wooden pots look so much better!

In other parts of the garden, the blueberry bushes are filling up with blueberries, chives are doing well, a closer look at one of my grape plants, and my potato bags. My potato growing bags did not produce well last year, the bags were getting tattered so I decided not to plant any this year, but left them where they were until spring clean up, looks like they decided to grow themselves from whatever had been left there from last year. I will be interested to see if we have any potatoes this year, in the meantime I have been adding soil to them and they are doing pretty well.

The bird feeders have had a lot of visitors this past couple of weeks, the goldfinch have finally returned and I am really enjoying watching them.

All of the backyard birds are fun to watch, bird behavior is really interesting if you watch long enough. They have quite a bit of interesting body language between them all, below you can see some interesting interaction going on, they're really very serious about their pecking order and who gets what spot on the feeders!

We have had plenty of goldfinch and red-winged blackbirds, and last week we even had a nuthatch stop by, which was nice to see, they were more common at my woodland garden, and I don't see them often here.

We have had a lot of red-wings lately, some mature males and some juveniles and plenty of females as well. Their song is so distinct and they just sing all day. I love the red on their wings when they take flight, so beautiful! Between the large groups of different birds, we have been going through two suet feeders every other day and filling all three feeder just about as often. We plan on adding some more feeding stations soon.

So that is what's happening in our garden. I will leave you with my favorite picture from the garden this week, one of my bachelor button flowers, I just love the blue color! I also just started an Instagram account, after finding out someone had set up one using my e-mail address, so it took some figuring out, but I think I got all the kinks worked out. I am hoping to add a picture a day, you can follow me on Instagram here-


Thanks for stopping by!

Linking to:
May Garden Party
Wow Us Wednesday
Wake Up Wednesday
Think Tank Thursday
Be Inspired!


  1. Love those wooden barrel planters!!
    And I adore your birds. We have Morning doves nesting oin a flower pot outside our window.Stop by to see if you get a chance...


  2. April, I see that you already stopped by to see our doves!! Thanks so much!!


  3. You do so much with your little plot of land, April, it's very inspiring! I think the wooden barrels look nicer, also. I love the red wing blackbird's song. Reminds me of a country meadow. Have a nice weekend!


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