Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Beautiful Fall, Garden Changes and “Earthing”

We are having the most beautiful weather! I just checked the 10 day forecast for our Zone 4 Black Hills area. They are not yet predicting a frost!  In July I wrote a post about Changing 3 Things In The Garden.  I have done them and more.  One of my 3 things was the removal of all the plants along the 50foot area behind my garden.  I really dreaded that job. I knew it would be hard. Here is a picture of what that area looked like before.
This is the area behind my fence. A few years ago one of the utility companies dug up the alley. When they replaced the gravel, the surface was left in lumps and low spots.  Creeping Jenny found its way into this area and I feared it would take hold in the fertile soil on the other side of this fence.  So my goal was to remove the plantings from this 50foot by about 3ft area. Ugh!  This required my shovel, metal rake and a pick ax. Yes, a pick ax on the packed gravel!  It took me about 3 1/2 mornings, but I got it done.  My attitude towards this job was greatly improved by an article I read about a new book entitled: “Earthing”The Most Important Health Discovery Ever.  I just ordered the book, so I haven’t read it yet. But what caught my attention was the idea that the earth is a source for negatively charged electrons.  Negatively charged electrons look to disable positively charged free radicals.  This idea  intrigued me because I recently learned that most multivitamins actually cause a surge in free radicals which act negatively on our health. I take a brand that has been scientifically shown to reduce that free radical action.  So here is an article and a book which touts the benefits of making contact with the earth for better health!  We gardeners have always known that making contact with the earth is a good thing and now scientist are finding out why.  So my inspiration was to go out there and sit in the earth as I worked away at my project.  I still need to work on the area a bit more, but here it is.
 It’s not very pretty yet. I still need to do some cleanup.  I left 6 Rhubarb plants out in this area. Years ago a friend  who was removing a house gave the plants to Ted who brought them home to me to assure that I would have a supply for Rhubarb Pie.  I share this Rhubarb with friends and still Ted gets a pie or two.
This is the inside of the same area of the garden. At the far end, I reworked some of the path. I had daylilies some inside and some outside of the fence. The idea was to give the garden complete walls. The vines on top and daylilies at the bottom. Since no one lives behind us, we do not need such privacy. And I have some new ideas of what to plant next spring, so I removed the daylilies.  On the right side you can see earth where some of the vegetables were harvested.  Remember the 2  foot by 2  foot bin that was to grow from 60 to 100 pounds of potatoes. Well, I only harvested 10 pounds.  But, that' ok. I am going to try again. The red potatoes I planted only set potatoes on about 6 to 8" of the very healthy looking vines. I recently read that early potatoes set potatoes on the lower parts of the vine. I need to do research to find a later type of potato that sets longer along the vine.   I think the potato bin next year could go out behind the fence. Even 10 pounds of potatoes harvested out there would be a plus.

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Scentimental, Yellow Showers and White Simplicity Roses are loving this weather.
When I can my mornings are spent in the garden. Later I go in and do inside things including my part-time job. I talked about this and my online Webcast on my last post, but I forgot to mention that this is something that I have been doing for 5 1/2 years and that I mentor.  So, if you know of someone who would like to earn extra income, loves people and the environment, have them contact me. webcast as described in my last post.

Outside our kitchen dining area is a very old, large Elm tree.  Squirrels look at us through the windows. I took this picture looking out the window through the glass.  Hugs, Gloria


  1. What a great photo of those squirrels. They are the bane of my existance! I have an alley also, finally paved after much neighborhood and village meetings. I also have a xeric garden along my fence in the alleay. You are working very hard to gets things in shape before the winter.


  2. I want a rhubarb pie! Do you think Ted might share? :)

  3. Hi Eileen - Yes, the squirrrels can be a pain. I don't feed them, but they could around and do their thing. Yes, I have been working hard doing things that I only dreamed of doing.

  4. Kate, yes Ted will share! I had a yard sale here this weekend and made my friends Butternut Squash Pie. I think I will post thre recipe.

  5. You inspire me...and I've also been re-working several areas over the spring and summer. So glad that our zone 4 gradening & clean-up season is being extended into October...I'm hoping to take off Thursday and Friday this week because the weather forecast is for 70 degree, sunny weather. I still have spring bulbs to plant, which means more soil excavation and "mixing" -- This will be my first spring with flowers in my front and side yards, where I can enjoy them from my south windows.

    I do know, however, that no matter how much I get done this fall, there will be continuing growing and landscaping projects come spring. I plan to read a number of gardening books througout the winter...and take a Master Gardener's class....BTW, rhubarb is my favorite -- so many "grandparent memories" attached to that wonderful plant's harvest and creation of desserts!

  6. Hi Gloria, I'm impressed with your tenacity, getting to the "root" of that problem. Good work! And those squirrels are absolutely adorable. I think this might be the cutest squirrel photo I've ever seen.

  7. The squirrels look so sweet! You have certainly done a lot of work! It always makes me feel great to get a big job done. and it definitely is good for the body. I love that you still have such pretty roses blooming. Scentimental is gorgeous, and I'm guessing it smells good, too.