Monday, May 30, 2016

We recently had some wildlife experiences concerning turtles. On our morning walk, Lucy came across our resident box turtle in the wild back corner of the property. She was curious, but timid, so we just called her off and continued our walk. I'm happy he's still around.

Later that morning, she was in her yard and was barking a lot. She kept looking toward the garage. I thought a customer parked in the top driveway, but no one was there. Instead, I see a large snapping turtle walking through our yard. That's something we never saw before! John said this is the time they lay eggs and we thought she was going from one of the farm ponds nearby to the pond on the property behind us. John managed to get her into the wagon (snapping all the time) and drove her to the fence line and released her. That's a lot of turtles in one day!

We finally got basils planted in the gardens. I didn't feel we were late at all this year. In fact, I encouraged customers to wait until closer to Memorial Day to plant basil. It wants nighttime temperatures consistently in the 50s and we just arrived there recently. Along with peppers, basil likes warm weather, so it's hard to get a head start unless the weather cooperates.

Don't forget to keep newly planted herbs and flowers well watered until they are established.  Plants are most likely to fail when they're young. So , after planting, water daily for the first week if it's not raining. Give them a good soaking. For the second week, water every other day if it doesn't rain. After two weeks, they should be pretty well established. At that point, most herbs are fairly drought tolerant. Concentrate your watering on ornamentals and veggies.

Our gardens are looking nice since the weather has improved. When you stop by, feel free to stroll through. Plants are labelled so you can identify them and see many plants we sell in a garden setting.

One of my outdoor rosemary plants survived the winter, but had the center broken due to the heavy snowfall. I trimmed out most of the center, and it's filling in now. I don't think the damage will be noticeable in a month or so.

We had a group tour from the Rosemary House stop by last week. It was a nice group, and they seemed very happy with our selection of plants. Many of them toured the gardens. They were here just over an hour, s we had many sales in a short period of time. John was surprised at the hectic pace, but he kept up well.
So he's not exactly relaxing during retirement, but he sure is enjoying it.

It is so gratifying to hear the comments our customers make. So many people compliment the health and appearance of our plants. Recently, two new customers really made my day. One walked in the shop and declared, "This is my new favorite store!" The other was a young woman who walked around the shop and said, "It's just like Christmas." We do appreciate all the kind words.

I'm continuing to harvest perennial herbs like mints, tarragon, oregano, thyme and lemon balm along with rose petals. Don't forget to cut off lemon balm's small white flowers before it goes to seed, s it doesn't spread everywhere.

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