Cedarbrae Community Garden July 2015

I’ve gone and done it again – I’ve completely neglected my community garden plot. I pretty much predicted I would do this, but there was some small bit of hope that maybe things would be different this year. With the neglect aside, the garden has been doing really well.

Cedarbrae Community Garden

The good thing is that this year has been fairly good in terms of weather. It has been mostly warm and rainfalls have been pretty frequent. So the gardens have been generally happy. I actually hadn’t realized how well the community garden was doing because it had been a couple of weeks since I’d seen it. I walked over one evening and discovered that I already had a few zucchini that were on the verge of being too large for my liking, the kale and swiss chard were exploding, and the bush beans had a million flowers (some plants even had tiny beans!).

Cedarbrae Community Garden

I really need to keep on top of this garden now. Luckily it is virtually weedless, so I don’t need to do much to it in the way of weeding. But I do need to water it occasionally, and most importantly, I need to be harvesting from it frequently.

Cedarbrae Community Garden

I’ve been thinking a lot about that gardening space lately and whether or not I want to continue growing there after this season. On the one hand, it is very convenient because it is pretty much within seeing distance from my front door. And it also gives me extra growing space that I don’t have in my own back yard. But on the other hand, I do have to pay a fee to use it (and unfortunately the fees went up quite a bit this year), and I’m not convinced that my yields are offsetting the cost of the plot, also factoring in the cost I put in initially for the seeds (although fairly minimal, I do need to take it in to consideration). The other thing I’ve been waffling with is whether or not it is fair for me to have a plot at a community garden when I have the space in my own yard to grow vegetables. There is a wait list every year for the community garden, and I get priority since I’ve rented in past years, but it might be time for me to let someone else, who may not have access to another growing space, to garden there. Alternatively, I have been wanting to convert some of the space in my front yard to food gardens, so if I do that I would have the equivalent to or more space than the community plot. As well, I’ve recently been considering something like a yard-share which would give me access to growing space in a residential backyard in exchange for some of the crops. I can’t believe I’m already planning for the next growing season!

Do you grow in a community garden? I’d love to hear your thoughts on it. Is it your only growing space? I’d also love to know if you find it to be cheaper than buying fresh produce, factoring in the cost of the plot fees.

Mid-July 2015 Garden Update

I have been so delinquent in blogging lately, and I have a couple of excuses (I’ve been busy, I haven’t felt motivated to sit at the computer, blah blah blah), but it is time for an update – and a lot has been happening around the garden lately. The garden has truly gone insane – I can’t enter my backyard without being attacked by monster plants. This is a good thing though, it also means that I am finally harvesting.

Pea Flowers

The pea flowers are so pretty.

There have been a few small harvests, like rhubarb, strawberries, honey berries, radishes, herbs, etc. But this week is the start of when I have to really keep on top of things, especially summer squash. Yesterday I went out in the backyard and made the first squash harvest, mostly young squash (I like them when they are young and tender). Then later that evening we walked over to the community garden, which I haven’t actually seen for about 2 weeks, and discovered 3 large zucchini. I mean, they weren’t so big that they are inedible, but they are about 3 times the ideal size for me. Now there is a large pile of squash sitting on my counter waiting to be eaten. And I know I have about 10 more in the garden that will be ready in a few days. Remember how I said I really need to keep on top of things right now?


Lettuce growing nicely in an old wine box. It’s growing slowly in the shade, but I’m okay with that!

Along with the squash, I’ve been picking at the alley raspberries and the peas growing in the backyard, and I also finally harvested the remainder of the garlic scapes.

Garlic Scapes

I’ve also been thinking a lot about the front yard. I mentioned awhile back that my front yard is not exactly where I want it to be. But I’m actually really looking forward to doing something with it. First thing, we’ll start removing the remaining grass. There actually isn’t a lot of grass left, so doing a little bit at a time won’t be so overwhelming. I’ve just got to figure out how I want to incorporate edible growing space in the front. I was thinking about raised beds, or even some more galvanized steel livestock tanks, but I’m just having a difficult time picturing how it will all work. I’d like for it to be aesthetically pleasing, but also functional. I’m actually planning on writing a longer post about the front yard, that will actually include photos, so maybe I’ll wait to talk about it.


I usually kill non-alpine clematis, but for some reason I’ve kept this one alive for many years. It is currently in full bloom.

Aside from the small-ish harvests and planning the front garden, I honestly have been spending most of my time indoors working. It’s been good, but I think I’m definitely ready to tackle a few outdoor projects. What have you been doing in the garden, and what have you been harvesting?

Secret Wool Society

It is finally here! My new Etsy shop, Secret Wool Society, is open!


I am so excited about it! Can you tell? It has sure been a labor of love, but I’m so pleased with it.

I will still be operating my other Etsy shop, Herd of Cats, and have lots of new products in the works for that shop, but for right now I am focusing all of my energy in to building up stock for Secret Wool Society. There are a few ready-made weavings currently in stock, but I am always up for commissions (if you want to inquire about a weaving, click the “Contact” link at the top of this blog and there is an easy access form there).

I will periodically post shop updates here on my blog, but your best bet is to follow my Instagram where I post pretty much everything as soon as it is finished.

Thank you for your support and don’t worry, the blog will be back to normal next week!

I’m offering 10% off all weavings with code HELLO10 at checkout until August 1st.

July 2015 In The Garden

The garden has been keeping me really busy this year. It’s been good though and I finally feel like things are starting to slow down. Which means I can kind of sit back and enjoy it as it is for a bit. And also maybe think about what I’d like to accomplish in the garden for the remainder of the season.

We recently had a huge heatwave, followed by some big rainfalls, and there is some more heat in the forecast, so things are really starting to get lush. There has already been some heavy duty pruning going on (we may have pruned away some branches from our neighbor’s tree)

Garden July 2015

Looking pretty darn lush. I believe this is going to be the year of the squash in my garden, they are all looking so full and healthy – and I’ve even got a few baby squash forming. Making those squirrel proof seedling cages was a good idea – I didn’t lose any squash this year to those pesky creatures.

Last year I included some to-do lists for the garden, and I thought I might try it again this year. I really enjoy reading other garden blogger’s to-do lists, so maybe readers might find mine interesting as well. And if not, just skip to the pretty pictures.

– Weeding! I’ve been pulling out a few dandelions in the back yard as they pop up, but I really need to dedicate a couple of hours to just weeding, especially in the front yard. I rarely post photos of the front yard on my blog because it is so so sad, but I’m going to try to start. This is a realistic blog where I post the good, the bad, and the ugly, so I should be posting the front for your viewing displeasure (I’m being really hard on myself here, it’s not that bad).
– Figure out some sort of trellis for the back alley raised bed. I’m growing some pumpkins back there, so instead of having them grow down where we park the car, I’d prefer if they grew up. I have no idea what I’m going to do there. I need to think of something quickly though – I noticed that they are now growing out of their little squirrel-resistant cages.
– Clean up the alley. It is in a pretty shabby state right now. It needs to be weed whacked and I need to dispose of the dead corpse that is my former Christmas tree. And there is a lot of garbage. I’d really rather just keep forgetting this area exists, but those pumpkins are planted back there, and I water them almost every day, so I would rather look at something less horrifying and garbage-ridden. Also, our alley is a mud pit when it rains, so we really should get a load of gravel in there to help things. That task has been on the to-do list for awhile now.
– Fertilize the peppers and tomatoes. I am such a delinquent when it comes to fertilizing. I maybe do it like once a season. Must fertilize.
– Figure out what to do with the front yard. I referenced the nightmare of the front yard above, and I’m probably way over exaggerating it, but it really isn’t the way I want it and I kind of just want it to not exist right now. The main problem is the awful state of the lawn. The truth is, I don’t care about my lawn and I really haven’t made an effort to care for it for about 5 years or so. And it really shows. I wouldn’t actually even consider it a lawn anymore – it is mostly weeds and old cigarette butts (lots of pedestrian traffic on my street). The real reason for not caring for it is mainly because I think lawns are useless resource vampires, but also because it will eventually not exist in our yard. My vision for the front yard is for there to be no lawn, to expand the front porch in to something useful and pretty, to replace the front walk, to have some raised beds for edibles, and for the rest of it to be a low maintenance perennial garden with a couple of trees. The plan this year is to remove a little bit of the remaining lawn each week. Originally when I was thinking about what I wanted to do this summer, working on the front yard was not even a thought in my mind. The only real thought I’d had was that I wanted to come up with a rough plan to implement over the next 5 or so years. But then seeing the lawn this spring, and feeling nothing but embarrassment, rage, and contempt every time I saw it, I changed the plan. The good news is that it will cost me nothing but time. And possibly some money on cedar mulch if I get far enough. I’d love to hire it out and just have someone come in and set fire to it in one fell swoop, but I’ve already spent way too much on the garden this year, and I’d like to be able to eat, so I’ll have to do it slowly myself with nothing but my trusty spade.

Garden July 2015

I guess that’s the garden right now in a nutshell. Things are growing and even though my front yard is a bit of a touchy subject right now, I am pretty happy with the back yard this year. All in all, things are decent! How is your garden growing?


One more photo! The honeyberry harvest this year has been great so far! I have three small plants and I’ve never gotten more than a handful of berries in past years. This year the branches were bursting with fruit and it looks like there will be a second harvest! I intended to actually make something out of the first harvest, but they all got eaten raw before I had the chance #gardenerproblems