Watching plants grow

What a magical time this is. In many ways, but let’s now concentrate on what is happening on the windowsills and outside: growth.

I’m fascinated about the miracle of seeds. The same principle – a hard little package – with so many variations! From tiny to substantial (avocado!), rough, smooth, round, straight and long, smooth, wrinkled, hairy. I love to watch the first signs of germination, the tender green emerging, the plant taking shape. Some people watch TV, I watch plants…

 

 

bluebell
bluebell seedlings – too many, too close together, too small to thin out…
Chenopodium giganteum
Seedlings of Chenopodium giganteum. I can’t believe how tiny they are!

 

It’s a busy time of planting, repotting, tending. Last year I lost so many plants to slugs, I was angry, sad and devastated. This year I’m trying to keep myself in check with sowing (ha-ha), I applied the natural pest control in January and now I’m armed with a garden spray that works on air pressure and this:

garliccayenne

my garlic&cayenne potion. It should work like this: One takes a bulb of garlic, crushes the pieces, puts them in a jar, throws in a cayenne peper (or two – mine were dried) and pours hot water over it. Let sit for 24hours+ , sieve out the plant material and keep the liquid in a refrigerator until needed.

To use: pour some garlic-cayenne potion in the garden spray tank, thin out with water – I did about 1:10 – and spray your tender seedlings with it. Repeat after rain.

The principle: the garlic-cayenne water stinks! It should be too hot&repulsive for the slugs, and they should leave your tender broccoli seedlings untouched.

Let’s hope it works.

 

Permaculture foodforest…in the making.

view Happy sighs. This view, the cries of buzzards as they circle above the fields, all my baby trees alive, the space, the peaceful presence… The pioneering grasses in the field have done exactly what I hoped they would do – they’ve been flattened against the ground by the weight of snow just some weeks ago. New humus in the making!   shiitake logs A new,try-out with shiitake logs. Try-out #1 has not produced a single shiitake mushroom – the spawn plugs were probably too old. This time they were sticky-fresh, covered with promising spawn… I hope we’ll succeed. It was an intense week of trimming fruit trees, thinning out a hazelnut bush/tree, trimming roses and other flowering perennials. While I was at it, I encountered a big, green frog. “Well, hello there!” I said, surprised by seeing it in daylight, at the end of February. Perhaps I had disturbed it’s sleep? It crept into a snug hole between winter-brown stumps and stems, quite contently. The next morning I found this in our little pond. frog spawn And the morning thereafter there was even more! …and more… I think the next time we go, we shoud take earplugs with us, just in case.   field Our son had a friend visiting and they made a little expedition on the land, in search for “nettles and other nasty stuff for our soup”. The soup contained dirt, twigs, grasses, moss and such. These guys are 8 years old, and the cherry tree to the right of our son was planted two years ago. I’m curious to see what the proportions are after 8 years from now. I had hoped to bring some structure to the field this time – some paths, or beds for plants for instance. But the time was too short, and it didn’t feel right yet. I’m happy I got all the trimming done, and I even hid some seeds here and there. It is my permaculture playground, a future food forest (I hope), a healing garden and my school for spiritual gardening. Quiet talks with Deva’s, feeling this and that…and a lot of physical work. Thankful that the dream, born about ten years ago, has manifested!

Silent growth

honeysuckle

I’m tucking little seeds into pots of soil every now and then…

This year I’m following the biodynamic almanac of Maria Thun for the first time, to give some astral allure to my sowings. I’m hovering almost daily above the seed trays, and of course,  just when I miss a day the magic happens – small seedlings appear and wave at me cheerfully.

rocket

Outside the signs of spring progress, little by little. I’m very happy to greet the regular guests, the snowdrops and crocus, and keen to see how my tiny trees and bushes are doing in their pots (to be relocated from Garden 1 to Garden 2 as soon as they’ve got some height). Goji is alive (as I thought it would), looking very sweet with its round leavebuds. I’m holding my breath for the pomegranate – did it survive the winter? Time will tell.

crocuss  snowdrops goji

Inside, I’ve dug my artists’ tools out of their hooks and nooks – I was itching to “be creative” and set out to try my hand at illustrations. You will see the results emerging slowly but surely in the Portfolio section.

I’m curious to know what are you itching to do? Take a baby step in that direction…and then another one…

 

Quote on Earth Healing

“We need to restore the cycle of exchange between human beings and the worlds of the Earth and nature. As a culture we take from the Earth what we think we need, we consume these resources, and discard or destroy what is left. This is not a cycle of exchange but a one-way path that leads to the spiritual impoverishment of human beings and the plundering and destruction of the Earth.

 
To restore the cycle we must first ask ourselves what we can give to the Earth and its beings. We humans carry within ourselves spiritual and creative potentials that can open new prospectives and possibilities for the enfoldment of the Earth and all life, thus opening and enriching the cycle of life, and creating a flow and manifestation of abundance.”

Marko Pogacnik – Earth Healing

Deep vibes

The awakening sighs of the Earth… While Queen Frost still reigns, the days grow longer and Nature awakes – just a little. Day by day small sprouts emerge, stubby leaves of tulips, things like that.

On my walk I encountered the elder again and was amazed – I had no idea it was so busy growing already!

elder in winter

 

Inside, the first seeds (Chenopodium bonus-henricus) have sprouted – and I’ve sown some more “stuff”, outside, under glass.

sprouting

I was felled by the flu for some days, and had the opportunity to re-read this book again after…almost ten years. I had bought the 1st edition during my studies in London and read it in 2006. Now I was gifted with the 2nd edition, and at unwrapping it a thankful smile of re-membering made my whole being kind of radiate – oh YES! Nature spirit and elemental beings! Welcome to 2015, Nina, this will probably (hopefully) be the theme.

The flu is almost gone now, and a little bit less than the half of the book remains. Luckily it’s weekend..!