It has been too warm lately, and my irises decided to wake up and start growing. Unfortunately, the weekend was going to be 8 degrees with snow!
I asked DH to cover them up, and he had the brilliant idea of using clear, plastic, painter’s drop cloths with boards to hold down the corners against the wind. The little sunlight we are getting can get through the plastic so hopefully will keep them from freezing. I know it isn’t good to leave plastic on for a long time, so I’ll be taking it off as soon as the danger of hard freeze is over.
Good thing we did, this was my driveway yesterday a couple of hours after I got home. Good thing I left work at lunch! I know it isn’t as much as some others, but this is enough to be a problem for driving on this mountain. I found that out the hard way last year! My Snow Day of 2014 was a bit of an adventure.
This morning the result of the overnight ice formation was actually quite beautiful. Trees and limbs are coated with ice, and glistening in the early morning sun.
Looking toward the next mountain to the east, more ice glitters in the sun.
Inside is warmer and more inviting. I am excited that my amaryllis has apparently decided to bloom! This little bud showed up a few days ago.
I can’t wait to see it, hoping it will be as beautiful velvet red as the flowers last year.
I do have some flowers in bloom. The lovely ladies of my quilt group gave me this pretty red cyclamen.
Down in the basement, the little plastic carton greenhouses are waiting for their seeds.
Some of the seeds I ordered have shown up in the mail. I’ll get these going around Feb 25th, have to wait for the right phase of the moon, and not too far ahead of the last frost date. I hope the tomato seeds arrive in time!
Last fall, I sent in a soil sample to the county extension office. I got the kit at the Mountain State Fair. North Carolina offers this service free to homeowners if you get your samples in before the end of October. I wanted to see if my soil was the cause of so few tomatoes and spindly growth of my herbs and peppers last year.
This looks like a difficult report to read, but the pages of information that came with it made it easy. My soil pH is OK, 6.5-6.6. No lime is recommended. My soil type is mineral, a good one to have for growing things – not sandy or clay. But, there is a deficiency of magnesium, manganese, and zinc in my soil. So, I’ll look for those and apply sometime next month when it gets a bit warmer. The report says a liquid fertilizer is ideal, which works for me. I don’t want to dig up all the bulbs that are there. The recommendations are the same for both tomato crops and peppers/sage crops. Most extension services offer this service, some will have a nominal fee, and it is worth the time to do it when the information is specific to your garden. I’ll probably have another analysis this fall, just to be sure that the fertilizer and supplements I put on this year corrected the problems.
Have you ever had your soil analyzed?