Backyard Parables (for May Zoom discussion)

Had a total of 3 people at our first zoom meeting.  We re A brief viewed the Backyard Parables, A brief history of gardening, Farm City, and  A weed by any other name.  We discussed for about 40 min.  Decided that we will follow are reading list and read Emily Dickenson’s Gardening Life for our 16th of June meeting @ 925.


starting her first garden   Does it feed the soul?

she believes in parables.

Trust your gut for gardening  it’s used to shed light on a topic.

nature is no fool, sets the rhythm


parables are stories on intent

it has a spiritual quality

gardening is a spiritual thing

Author has six seasons:

  • conception Jan. -Feb.
  • birth  new birth life
  • youth
  • adulthood peek of growth
  • Senesce – deterioration
  • death

know other gardeners 🙂  make space for each other

no which end of the bulb is up!

before cultivating do a breath test

Author has a huge garden   7 hours to mow!

Not everything dies.


winter Chapter 1 – water from heaven

thinking (thought) of shooting deer in winter

it hurt to be too dry or too cold (listening to hunters)

talk about water 8.22 pounds per gallon.  We need to lay down during this time

in winter most item are as cold as ice.  Which increases the size.

The author celebrates a happy silver anniversary for the garden

winter does not have a set time to reopen.  Though, the garden never closes, it’s a teacher

wanted to build a year round garden

plants are used for birds (curiosity of birds)

fruit comes from pollinated flowers

Look out the window for a garden:  page 12

Garden Design 101

  1.  look out the window
    1. think about watching birds
    2. where do you see the gardsen most often
  2.   maybe plant a four season shrub?
  3. make sure you have water
  4. select good plants to grow

understand light and shelter

author was talking about birds, in which the author depends on

the author talks about water gardens p. 19 This was talking about winter ice surfaces

talk about electric boxes for the garden in the backyard

talk about gas exchange with all the ice on the pond (frog pond)

even talk about feeding fish in the pond

watch out for polluted waters (have many toxins)

seed plots require much  more water, but don’t prompt them on synthetics as a quick fix P.26

buy seed that are certified organic, stay away from seed strain. (if possible) for eatable seeds p26

treated seeds has fungicide included

talking about spraying the garden with spray (mentioned Roundup)

author uses dolarizing (smother weedy areas with plastic sheets)

has no horticulture soap

without insect would very simply disappear.

Author has environmental control issues

Use Blind faith, is better than expertise P.35  give it a basic home when planting

This will die and grow in the garden p.37

has a frog pond and multiple pines (dwarf) p.37  means slow growing

help the sproutsgrow (by pushing/pulling)

lots of birds in the garden

gardening is like mathematics p. 41 nature engineering

in garden you need to know when to give and when to take away

lots of counting when planting a garden  (use shelf life) set like a bed or a table.

gardening is mathematical because your always looking at a unsolved problem

**p. 44 seed shopping rules like shelf life, or sell by date

look at pelleted or treated seed  p. 44  pelleted is seed in natural state

maybe by a back up supply of seed

how much will fit in garden

watch out for excess shade in your garden.

  1. Think of what you want to eat most of
  2. what is available locally for a reasonableprice

grows both chare and kale

maybe grow something that scarce

don’t buy transplants (grow inside from seed)

beware of impulse buying

seeds come unprotected in the mail

seeds need to be stored cold & dry

mail order seeds ae wierd!

be a garden enthusiest!

grow hybrids or heirloom can use either

heirloom is over 50 years, but some say its before 1940

so, no cherry tomato or snap peas

use for the authors seed catalog

When gardening bulbs, its good to over-do-it


Chapter 2   Earth (Spring)

good by woody plants

talk of varmints digging holes in/around your plants, damaged beyond repair

NOTE:  Read upon all plants growth plus/then add about 15-20% more space (breathing room

Hands to Work & Hearts to God

When planting be modest

fencing is the only deer proof protection

Note:  need to protect your garden

Why do you Garden?

  1.  food food
  2. viewing landscape (no deer cage)

Ref: local Extension services P.76

2 rows of low fences

Note:  lean to underplant P.82

Note:  Have patients

p82 or 36% complete

Talk of chipmunk, woodhucks, mole, or vol.

underplanted around the “old tree” (apple)

think moaic ten steps

  1.  No ring around the rosy
  2. no polks dots
  3. patience is required
  4. select a palette
  5. include ephemerals p. 83
  6. include ground cover types
  7. make space for some gems, even bulbs
  8. leaves are life partners for plants
  9. Need texture
  10. once a palette is selected, repeat, repeat

chipmunks move dirt in their mouths

talk of maybe doing  a soil sample p.89


practice Phenology which is a study or recurring life-cycle stages

flowers and insects occur about the same time

Seek more plant, strive for new things (more knowledge)

Never stop wanting more plants!

Succession Sowing

  1.  make a list what you want
  2. things you want to have p. 103
  3. remember the basic practices of gardening
  4. water deeply
  5. cutting back perennials

let each bulb tell you when it’s done blooming

Author has a gardening uniform!  each pair hs their own DNA to it.  (had 3 outfits)  even had Dickeys pants.

The author also likes Dandies

talk about woodchuck….big destruction and any other mammals in the garden.

don’t plant until the round is properly prepared

for pruning take out the:

  1.  dead
  2. damaged
  3.  diseased
  4. take out all suckers
  5. water sprouts

be vigilent,  keep coming  back to prune

more pruning …the more you prune

Chapter 3

fire (summer)

author made gardening legs after 30 years.

author worried about gardening heat

Have some Earth  smell is the organic compound for dirt (it’s a so-called bifunction enzyme).

dirt smell is good for depression.

Difficulties with gardening tools (like shovels)


Rules of mulch

  1.  slow moisture evaporation, moderates soil emperature
  2.   good mulch:
    1. material aged
    2. organic subsance
    3. good price
    4. not a source of contaniment
    5. no saw dust
    6. local material
  3.  what do you use
    1. wood shaving
    2. leaf mulch
    3. use stray
    4. barked chips
    5. When should I mulch
      1. spring
      2. add mulch to new plants
  4. Do I have to move mulch before fetilizing?
    1. top dress
    2. good mulch breaks down afte one year
  5. Are cocoa hulls good for mulching
    1. no p. 145
  6. Can worn tires be used for mulch
    1. probably not
  7. black plastic is not a good mulch
  8. garden create much mulch
  9. mulching containers p. 148

Storing a year of green herbs

Winston Churchill compared war to the garden p. 152

freeze as pesto cubes and others in logs of leaflets

parsley logs p. 154

The author deals with trying to catch a woodchuck…but ended up catching skunks.

all critters like the smell of dirt

Author knows a few of her weeds those competing with gardening plants

for weeding:  what greens do you take?

talk of pesticides/herbicides P.162

* A dandelion can produce two thousand seeds

weeds can be counted on, they are clever, need to go into own compost pile

talk about being a neighbor (love they neighbor as thyself)

Order Now:: animal proof flower bulb ; like Daffodils (skunks), Hyacinths and foxtails (deer resistant).  List of recommended bulbs on page 167.

talk about mile-a-minute weed (imported from asia)

looking at a plant you need to check out the leaves

talk about weeds from animals and fungi P. 170

*fungi sets up a boundary for growing

for fungi 250 are edible, and 250 can kill you (mushrooms)

without bats we would have many mosquitos

To Ripen a tomato (chemistry of a tomato P179-180)

  1.  root prunning
  2. plastic to keep frost of vined
  3. could be a regular practice
  4. like window cell
  5. sort in catgories
  6. wrap in brow paper bags
  7.  do this in 65-70 degree Fahrenheit
  8. put a bit of apple peel inside bag to up the ethylene

double freeze than putting in fridge

Author is thinking about snow blowers

Chapter 4   Wind (autumn)


Making a bird friendly gaardem

  1.  water is required (floating heater)
  2. less mown lawn means more botanical
  3. Edge habitat a place to hide
  4. bruh pile
  5. evergreen cover
  6. nest boxes
  7. a chemical-free environment    (need bugs)
  8. clean feeder-regularly  (10 to 1 bleach to water p.191)
  9. right diversity of living foods  (trumpet vines for hummingbirds) grasses, composites, fruit

trees an shrub list on p.192

10.  birds like to be watched

11.reduce danger of window strikes

12.  No marauding cats

wind is a powerful pollinator between 12-20%  of plants

refrigerated pickles p. 200 recipe

don’t overwater houseplants

begonia “bonfire” keep in basement  at 45-50 degrees F.

listed gardening Elephant ears  P.213

You eat what the garden produces (like sime animals)

Frost is coming

eat what the garden serves up

much talk about manty animals

plants look dead but it has foliage with seeds/chemical

plant act more intelligently than we do P.221

A chemical Sevin; limits the number of fruits in favor of a premium size

talk about having a garden in snow storm

talk of bees and geese

issue with trees/shrubs from first snow storm

for garden losses, erase the dead…

A garden is like a new Gospel

nature is to be conquered  pp.236

mother nature destroys what it creates p. 237

recipe of vegetable stock from snippets  (soup base)  use trimmings

likes “peels on” ingredients

never stop wanting more plants

why do I garden:

it’s a thing to do, can’t help myself!

looking for  a way thru….I am alive!  P.250

I do need more practice says the author.  She doesn’t include politics, faith, or wealth

she thinks everyo0ne should have a bontiance as a neighbor








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