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June 27, 2007

Garden Update and My Grandma

Phelan was asking how everyone's gardens were doing, so I thought I'd share a photo of the state of things in our back yard right now.
The potatoes and peas (in the foreground) are doing well, and we've got lots of carrots, broccoli, spinach, kale, and mixed greens at the moment. I just put the tomato spirals out yesterday, and I either need to get a few more of them, or rig something else up, because I went a little crazy experimenting with different varieties this year.
The banana plant (on the right) is looking happy, but it's unlikely that it will ever produce here. My step-dad lived on a Kibutz in Israel for 17 years, and he worked on a banana plantation while he was there, so the banana tree is his contribution to the garden.
The fig trees down at the end are growing well, and I spotted dozens of little figs sprouting in amongst the leaves.
The gorgeous gate was designed and built by my mom using an old piece of iron that she found at an antique store. There's another one on the other side of the yard, too. Guess what I'm hoping for as a housewarming gift? ;D

My lovely peaches have been reduced to "hairy pits".

While most things in the garden are looking great, my poor little peach tree is looking rather pathetic. It didn't like being uprooted from it's previous home, and the once plump, fuzzy peaches are now deflated and sad (I've since removed them so the tree can focus on making new roots). The original plan was to take all of the trees to our property right away and plant them, but since we're not to the point of building yet, I didn't want to leave them there by themselves without someone to water them regularly. For now, they are in pots on my mother's patio where I can keep an eye on them.


I've been meaning to post this photo of my grandmother for a few days now. We interred her ashes on the weekend, along with her sister's (they died two months apart). Both were buried at the site of my great grandmother's grave.
My grandma was a homesteader in the truest sense of the word and was one of northern BC's original pioneers. She and my grandfather raised my mom and her five siblings at their homestead at least 60 miles from the nearest settlement (and that was down a nearly impassable backwoods road, not an easy trip), where they had to deal with medical emergencies themselves - my mom got an axe in the head as a toddler while helping her 4 year old brother chop firewood and they just had to wait it out (she's fine by the way) - and where they actually had things like bear cubs for pets.
One of my favorite stories about my grandma involves her trying to chase a weasel  out of her kitchen cupboards by shooting at it with a shotgun (haven't we all had days like that?).

Our lives are very different, but the desire for self reliance has trickled down through the generations, and I am constantly amazed by the strength of the women who came before me.

11 comments:

Busy Woman said...

I too have been thinking and writing about my Granmother's ways. I am in Australia. If you would like to hear about her daily life please visit my blog.
www.avisionsplendid.blogspot.com

I have been enjoying your posts.

Phelan said...

Your garden looks great. Love the picture of your grandmother.

Carla said...

The garden is looking great and I LOVE the gate!!! I think your Mom could do a smashing business there if she so desired.

Chelee said...

Love the photo of your grandmother!

And shooting at vermin with a shotgun, I can totally relate some days.

The garden is looking amazing. Is this at your mom's house our on the property?

Shawna said...

The garden looks wonderful!!! The gates are truly fantastic, and love the picture and story of your grandmother--I am going to vist mine (93 yrs old) tomorrow :-)

Wendy said...

I love your garden, and the picture (and story) of your grandmother. My grandmother is my inspiration, too. She raised eleven children on five acres in a four room house that didn't have indoor plumbing until 1974. They were homesteaders, because they had to be, or they would have starved.

Cheryl said...

Busy Woman - I would love to pop over and read about your grandmother - thanks for taking the time to say hi!

Phelan - Thanks!

Carla - I know, I've tried to tell her that, but she doesn't think she could charge enough to cover all the work that goes into them.

Chelee - This is the one at my mom's place. It's fun sharing a garden with her and picking her brain for ideas.

Shawna - I hope you have a great day with your grandmother!

Wendy - Eleven children!? That's amazing, I can see why she inspires you!

Steffi said...

Great post,Cheryl.Very interesting post!Your garden looks very good!I have a banana tree in my garden too but he is just a little tree.Your picture of your grandma looks nice!

dawn said...

Beautiful garden. I like to try new varieties and things too, and have had overflowing garden areas.

My grandparents came from the old country and homesteaded in central Alberta. My uncle still lives on the land and my parents (and kids) built their farm not far away. We are living on an acreage and try to be self reliant.

Your mom's gate looks great. I will have to keep an eye out for things that I can incorporate in a gate.

Funny story about your grandma. I have done some unconventional things to accomplish tasks also.

I came to your blog from Carla's. Come for a visit sometime.

dawn said...

I did a garden post this morning. I am doing raised beds. I thought you might be interested for when you get on your property. Please excuse the size of my plants. We are farther north and have had cooler weather that usual.

rhonda jean said...

Your garden is looking nice and healthy. I'd be interested in knowing how your different varieties of tomatoes turn out. I've settled on brandywines and tommy toes this year and have been very happy with them.

You might like to give your peach tree a prune too. It will help it establish itself in the pot and should spring into growth when you eventually plant it in the garden.

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