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Archive for July, 2017

CHECKING THE FENCES…

When we lived in New Hampshire, my garden was pretty large.  Actually, I had quite a few small gardens within our acre and a half lot, so when I was going to take a real walk, and check ALL the gardens, I’d tell Joel I was going to “check the fences”.  Then he knew not to expect to see me again for at least an hour!  I wasn’t going to work in the garden.   I was just going to LOOK.  I wore my gardening gloves and carried my pruners.  I was always happy for the gloves, and even happier for the pruners, which I used OFTEN!

When we moved to Horizon House, I no longer had a garden.  However, I soon became the Chair of the Garden Committee.  Horizon House has about 40 raised garden beds available for residents to tend.  It took me awhile to sign up for one of them, but I finally took pity on a bed that was root bound by a Japanese Maple, nothing could grow there.IMG_6654  I placed some pots and planted mostly succulents, so I wasn’t bound by time and energy, neither of which I now have in any quantity!

So, what does that have to do with “checking the fences”?  Let me explain.  Those 40 aforementioned gardens are arrayed over three garden terraces, on three different levels in the West Wing of Horizon House.  Levels C, D and the Secret Garden, which can be found on the E level…with a little journey through the garage (which is why it’s called the “Secret” Garden).  Some people are not even aware of it’s existence!

 

“Checking the fences” at Horizon House means I visit each of those levels and see how the gardens are faring.  It is always a gentle surprise, and instead of pruning…I take pictures, which I post here or on the Horizon House web-site.  The gardeners always do a wonderful job with their gardens, and I love visiting them.

Again, when I tell Joel that I’m going to “check the fences”, he knows exactly what I mean. There are “fences” in Washington as well as in New Hampshire, even if there are no barriers in either place.  I have posted pictures of my journey this week, and hope you enjoy them.

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I’ve been sick.  The last month and a half I’ve been definitely flying “half-staff”!  And of course, it coincided with “June in our Gardens” here at Horizon House.  Fortunately all the activities had been set up,  It was supposed to be time to sit back and enjoy.  Unfortunately, I was so miserable, I only got to about half of planned events.  That’s what pneumonia does to you, I guess.  I’m still struggling, but every little step toward health gives me hope that this too shall pass!

My normal weekly activities usually take me on, what I call, “checking the fences”, when I travel to all three garden levels to see how everything is growing, if there are things that need attention, or mysteries I can perhaps help the gardeners solve .  I haven’t been able to do that.  The last week I have gotten to my own little succulent garden, but I can’t do much except fill the little birdbath.  I got my husband to accompany me once, and he helped me schlep the hose over to give everything a good soak.  What would I do without him???  Anyway, even the thought of dealing with a blog has not enamored me, or “called out” to me.

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NPR-(Woitek gurak/flickr)

This morning, however, I saw an article on my NPR page about Madrid’s (Spain) “Wall Gardens”.  They are vertical gardens that actually help with the soaring temperatures in the city.  How neat is that?

I don’t think it’s easy, by any means, but what a concept!  I loved it!

Doing this with vegetables seems to be a more common idea.  Here’s an article by the NC Extension Service.  Nebraska Extension Service also has an informational page concerning this concept.

Is this something we could think about doing in our own gardens?  I’ve been trying to think of a wall here at Horizon House that might be able to support something like that.  I haven’t figured it out yet, but I’m not giving up on the idea!

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