Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring Flings

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We've been busy this week as Spring flings herself about. I am sure that you are busy trying to keep up with her as she busts out all over the place. Feels great, doesn't it as the weather warms, the sun brightens, the days grow longer, and the gardens come alive?

The work never ends and we thrive. I have new pink muck boots this year to tromp around in, a gift last winter from the HG.

While we are busy here getting the Garden Spot in shape as Spring dances around, I am reminded of family and friends who are not afraid to let their gardens sleep in.

For example:

My cousin and her husband have probably returned from an Italian excursion while we worked in the vegetable garden and remodeled the kitchen (project still in progress).

My newly discovered childhood friend works hard to get her self published memoir in circulation. We had a great visit last week over chicken salad, hers embellished with red cabbage, currants, and grapes; mine served with apples and celery. Separated for 50 years, and we make almost the same salad for lunch. A life time ago in art class in junior high, Mary drew this caricature of me and my horse. I promised her then that I would keep it until she became famous. She has had a bit of fame over the years; now she writes a column for a local newspaper and  does some stand up comedy/readings at a local cafe in Denver.

Another dear friend took her daughter and grandchildren to Las Vegas for a few days of play over spring break. Aside from gaming, they found so much to do. She kindly invited me to go with her and I would have loved to get away, but we were in the middle of the kitchen remodel.

Lastly, my former colleague and dear friends at the university are now knee deep in freshmen research paper rough drafts and conferencing as the semester winds down. I do miss them, but I have to admit that I am glad to be hugging trees.

Here at the Garden Spot we have much to do:

Waking up the Trees

All of the new fruit trees were swaddled in chicken wire and burlap last fall at the insistence and with help of Tree Hugger Heather. While the Head Gardener worked on rebuilding the pond filter Saturday, I unwrapped the tress. They all survived the winter.

The first and only blossom on the summer apple tree. Hopefully there will be more blooms as Spring warms more.

The North Star Cherry was suffocating underneath her heavy blanket. I swear I could her take a long deep breath as her covering was removed. She has so far provided a very nice yield of cherries each year, given her dwarf size.

Dear, sweet Eastern Red Bud has awakened, too, but very slowly. The red buds in Greeley only 11 miles to the south are in full bloom--the ones that are alive, that is. They winter kill here so easily.


The HG worked on replacing this old trash can/pond filter that froze last fall. We had an early freeze while he was away working corn harvest. The filter froze, sprung a leak that nearly drained the pond to the bottom. He replaced the tall can with a Rubber Maid livestock water tank. Here he drills holes in the side for the hoses that bring water in from the pond and send it back filtered to the pond. He used most of the materials in the old filter.

Hoses attached, now he will begin layering in the filter materials.

Bricks on the bottom help support the filter material. He adds plastic filters for the lava rocks to rest on.

The lava rocks used in the old filter have been cleaned and placed in the filter.

The final layer, poly fiberfill will remove the sediments and dirt from the water. He has more to do, but at least the water is now being filtered.

Already doing it's job, the filter begins to clean up a long winter's worth of muck for the water.

Still need more work and a good cleaning, the pond begins to come back to life. Fortunately we didn't lose any of the goldfish over the winter. I have landscaping to do and perhaps we will move the rocks around some.


The old hand cultivator comes in handy, still as the HG ditches the rows for watering the onions and garlic.

I remember watching the HG's grandpa ditch the garden on the old farm years ago. 

Sundance and Pop stand by watching and waiting and begging to go to the front pasture.


The Garden Spot requires a lot of watering. The pasture and lawn benefit from the automatic system.

The garden, on the other hand, requires an old fashioned hose hooked to a timer.  

A side note: Many have commented on our planting garlic in the spring instead of the fall when it should be planted. The nursery man said to plant it now and again in the fall. I am excited for this first time crop.


I have disliked this old sink since we moved into this house. It has now been replaced by a sleek modern composite sink. I don't want to wear you out on the kitchen remodel, so I'll tease you a bit and hopefully next week the project will be done and I'll share the before and after photos.

Horsing Around
The four girls: Elinore, Lucy and Lily with Pop and Mom with here
wild, golden boy Sundance. 
What better way to spend a Sunday afternoon? 

Playing with My iPad

I will leave you with some eye candy using Waterlogue on my iPad to create these two water colors. First, my only African violet has finally bloomed. 

She's very pretty, don't you think?

Washington DC may have its beautiful cherry blossoms, which I have never seen, but Greeley, CO has its crab apple blossoms both white and in shades of pink all over town now in full bloom. These trees line the walk along side the newest resident hall on the University of Northern Colorado campus. I took the picture last Friday while I was on campus to tutor. The trees are so pink and you know how I love pink. 

So while my friends and family travel about doing exciting and even exotic things, the HG and I stay close to home enjoying the beauty that surrounds us tending to our garden, hugging our little fruit trees, playing with the horses, caring for the hens.  It's a very peaceful, quiet life and we rather like it that way.

Have a fabulous week. Make sure to swing by Judith's Mosaic Monday at Lavender Cottage to catch this week's mosaics. 

Thanks for stopping by.


  1. Hello, Ann!
    What an interesting post! I love your boots, your fruit trees, the pond, the green fields, the small girls riding a pony... and of course your "watercolours"! :)
    Have a great week ahead!

  2. I love your boots, your fruit trees. Ya'll are busy. I'd love to have a pond but then I think about how much work they are! A pony is a little girls best friend ... too cute! I do love watercolors. The old hand cultivators are the best!

  3. Hi Ann! I bet you are VERY happy to be free from research papers! I like your boots!

  4. I will say I covet your app, they don't make them for android...but oh if they did. I'd be first in line for one. They should make them.

    Garlic can and should be planted in both the Fall, and the Spring, harvest at the opposite will have twice the crops and it's going to be wonderful.


  5. I will say I covet your app, they don't make them for android...but oh if they did. I'd be first in line for one. They should make them.

    Garlic can and should be planted in both the Fall, and the Spring, harvest at the opposite will have twice the crops and it's going to be wonderful.


  6. Lovely much work. We open the pond soon. I only have green Mucks, but I love your pink daisy mucks...I need a pair!

  7. Those are quite the snazzy spring boots Ann! At least you have some, I just wear a pair of crocks to garden in. Lots of work going on at your place and the frozen pond filter reminded me of the year I didn't get a rain barrel drained in time before the big freeze. Yup, cracked and was useless even after patching.
    We used to have a filter for our pond and now we simply recirculate the water over the waterfall and with the number of aquatic plants - the water has never been better.
    Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday.

  8. Gosh you have been so busy...I am trying to catch up with my blog reading and writing and I loved this post. A great post full to bursting with goodness! xxx

  9. I have enjoyed my visit seeing spring arrive there :)

  10. Your watercolors are so pretty. I played around with a photo last night but it didn't have that pop of color it needed to look beautiful like yours. You sure have a lot of work at your place but I know you enjoy the results! And thank you so much for the comment on my blog this morning. I hesitated to share so much information and wondered how my friends would react. You left the best comment....just what I had hoped for. I read it out loud to my hubby. Thank you for always being there for me. Enjoy your day! Sweet hugs, Diane

  11. So many interesting things again, nice to see your headgardener is still using that old hand cultivator for the garden and your friend who kept the funny drawing of you and the horse, these are real treasures.

  12. Lovely photo's from the garden spot! What a delight to have you own head gardener. I could use a man like him in my garden! The pond looks good Ann.

    Wishing you a lovely weekend ahead!

    Madelief x

  13. Hooray for spring and seeing old friends. Happy gardening!