Weekend Coffee Share – Beautiful Spring

IMG_2298

How would you like your coffee today? Weekend Coffee Share is a weekly post, that anyone is free to join, and add a post of their own. I was thinking that we could have our coffee date in my backyard this week. It’s still a little chilly in the mornings, but so beautiful. It’s hard to believe that it can be chilly when the sky is so blue, and the sun so strong. I thoroughly enjoy these cool mornings, and warm days.

IMG_2303

The signs of spring had me smiling all week.

IMG_2305

Blossom on the trees, new leaves budding. I agree with Tolstoy’s philosophy about spring.

Spring is the time of plans and projects. 
― Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

IMG_2316

I’ve been planting a variety of organic heirloom cherry tomatoes this week. They live inside the two mini greenhouses that we recently put together.

IMG_2314

The nights would of been too cold for them without the greenhouses. The day temperatures are from mid 60’s to low 70′ now, and will get higher rapidly with every passing week. The perfect time to start seeds! I wrote a post about heirloom seeds, versus hybrids earlier this week.

IMG_2309

I also planted these young Black Mission Figs this week, and moved them to the greenhouse. Gardening makes me so happy! I haven’t looked at as many horses for sale as I usually do..LOL… (Only a few Arabian Horses, as I think they would be most suitable for this climate, and I happen to love the breed. I’ve only looked at ads on the internet, not in person.) Would you like a refill on your coffee?

IMG_2326

I was gifted this planting table a while back, and it’s now standing in the corner of the backyard, that I envision that my container garden is going to take over really soon!

IMG_2327

I envision that the area between the planting table, and the tiny greenhouses is going to be filled with vegetables, and the two greenhouses homes to fruit tree propagation projects. A slight difference compared to the 1.3 acres garden I had last summer (that would of covered 2-3 streets in our neighborhood here in Vegas… LOL.) It is still a garden, and I am grateful.

IMG_2320

What is the weather like in your corner of the world? Any signs of spring? Or are you still enjoying a deep blanket of snow?

IMG_2324

My dog Gretchen is enjoying these marvelous days very much. She’s five now, and I notice a maturity in her, that wasn’t there last summer. She is a very good dog. I can’t bear to think about her ever growing old. I hope she has many many good years to look forward to.

IMG_2318

IMG_2317

One of the things I enjoy about Saturday mornings here in Las Vegas, is watching the hot air balloons. There’s many of them, and some of them are there for our enjoyment every weekend morning. It’s a beautiful sight, seeing them in front of the Red Rocks. I can’t see the Red Rocks from my backyard, but I can see the hot air balloons as they are making their way towards the designated landing area. If I step out on the street I can see the Red Rocks as well. Have you ever been in a hot air balloon? I haven’t, but I think I would like to go for a ride in one, one day.

Tell me, how is your week so far? Any fun plans for the weekend? I’m waiting for some furniture from IKEA that I’m having delivered today. It’s a couple organizers for my daughter’s crafting things. They have quickly grown in number. She is really into crafting (the hot glue gun is used on a daily basis,) drawing, painting, sewing, woodcarving…you name it. I need to create a system for her things. I’ll involve her in the process, and she is always the one cleaning up her own things, but I want to help create a neater system than the one she has now. I think it’s great that she enjoys crafting, and I highly encourage that.

Oh, I almost forgot, we went to a movie night at my daughter’s school yesterday. It was great. She was very happy. They are awesome at creating simple, but fun small events for the kids. Very low key, and friendly. I’m so happy with her new school. Her teacher is great, and the school has high standards. They have high expectations on their students, and rank high among the national standards.

Have an amazing weekend!! I’ll leave you with some beautiful flowers I was surprised with at work earlier this week. Enjoy, and feel free to grab more coffee on the way out!

IMG_2332

Love,

Ms Zen

 

Organic Gardening; Heirloom Seeds V/S Hybrids

 

It’s spring, even though it’s still pretty cold in some parts of our country. Here in southern Nevada it’s definitely time to plant some seeds. If I decide to plant my vegetables from seed, are all seeds equal? Will I get similar results? What is a hybrid? And what is a heirloom?

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.

– Marcus Tullius Cicero

If you buy vegetables at the grocery store they are usually hybrids. A hybrid is a cross bred vegetable, that is modified to grow a big crop, be resistent towards diseases, and yield a harvest that is as tolerant as possible. Fruit and vegetables sold at the store often have to withstand extensive travel to get there, and of course most consumers like them to last as long as possible before they go bad. They can be modified with help of humans, or naturally in nature. (Genetically Modified Organisms are always created in a lab, and that is not the same thing as a hybrid.)

A heirloom vegetable on the other hand comes from someone that saved a seed from their favorite vegetable, and planted it again. It’s not unusual that heirloom seeds are hundreds of years old. Most gardeners would agree that they are non-hybrids, and open pollinated. If you save a seed from a heirloom vegetable, and plant it next year, and save a seed from that vegetable to plant the year after that…..and so on, you are always going to get what you first started out with. That is not the case with hybrids. If you ever tasted a heirloom vegetable, you never want to eat a hybrid again. They taste a million times more, and comes in varieties most people are unable to imagine. For me the choice is simple, if I take the time to grow my own vegetables (which I love to do,) it’s definitely going to be both organic and heirloom varieties. If I like them, I save the seeds for future use. It’s a great idea to build a seed bank of your own. Have you ever tried saving seeds? It’s pretty cool!

I planted some cherry tomatoes with the kiddos at work today. I’m pretty sure it was the first time they planted something from a seed. I can’t wait to see how they react to the process of seeing their seeds turn into a delicious harvest. I’m going to have them help me take care of the plants every day.

Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty, and generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity. – Lindley Karstens

The seeds we planted today are going to be part of a container garden. It’s the beginning of my favorite season! Extra exciting this year since I am in a new area, and gardening is likely going to be pretty experimental this first season. Do you have exciting garden plans? Tell me in a comment!

Love,

Ms Zen

Spring

lt

Last week we built a snowman, and had snowball fights, in layered winter clothing. This week we have Capri pants, and t-shirts. It was 71 degrees yesterday, and we are promised a whopping 73 today. The change of the season is vibrating in the air. I wonder what it will bring? I’m learning more and more about Las Vegas. The weather, the culture, and everything in between.

If it was up to me, the weather could stop here, at 73 degrees. I don’t need it to get any hotter. I’m very comfortable now. I would be OK if it got a little warmer, lets say 80 degrees? My future garden would like that. I know it will be a lot hotter before the summer is over. LOL.

The photo is from Lake Tahoe, and not from Vegas. I took it today, four years ago. I kind of like when beautiful places you spent time at pops up in your social media stream. I try to only share positive posts, that would make others, and myself happy to see.

I felt like starting some seeds yesterday, and I knew that I had some saved up in my personal seed bank, BUT when I looked into it, none were suitable for this area. I need to order some today. However I refused to give up, I felt like planting something. So the two little boys I care for, and I, planted some Organic Medjool Date pits, from dates we had with our breakfast. I’ve done that before, and they do grow. Fast enough for kids to make the connection between the pit they planted and the actual plant. Looking forward to see that project progress.

Time to turn wake my little Princess up, and get ready for the day. How is your week so far? Have a fabulous day!

Love,

Ms Zen