Monday, 3 June 2013

Springing into Action

For those of us living in Alberta, Spring came awfully late this year. . . or perhaps I should say, Winter took its sweet time taking its leave.  While some were more fortunate than others, I can honestly say that I, for one, am still anxiously awaiting the rows in my garden to pop up through the earth and be prepared to stand with me in the fight against the weeds.  I haven't even transplanted some of the tender plants, such as peppers and tomatoes yet and this year I've made a conscious decision to drastically reduce the number of annuals.  While I won't say that I am a steadfast die-hard sustainable/organic gardener, I continue to lodge my battle against weeds, primarily through the process of cultivation and good old-fashioned handpicking and the only watering I do is easily maintained by my rainwater barrel.

And slowly but surely, I'm converting the beautiful but highly labour-intensive flower gardens that my parents so lovingly created by the sweat of their brow,  into mulched beds with a mix of perennials, shrubs and trees.  It's true, they don't have the spectacular bursts of color but, except for a bit of hand picking weeds, they don't demand the attention and I rather like the less formal  'natural' look.  Large shrub beds, and a solid refusal to fertilize, also keeps lawn care to a minimum.  While we still have copious amounts of lawn (also planted by my parents), as long as I follow a few basic rules such as no chemical fertilizers and not cutting it too short -- the time is kept to a minimum.

then & now

When I walk through someone's yard or poke through a garden centre, my mind is always focused on ways which I can continue my hobby in a manner which is kind to the earth (and therefore to me) while keeping the maintenance to a minimum and the enjoyment to a maximum. Perhaps you're the same.  If so, here's a few links for your reading pleasure.