The occasional cold temperatures in March dissuaded the plants from growing. This was evident from an experiment with peas. I moistened the peas and those which appeared to be growing the fastest I planted outdoors and the remainder I planted in a soil container in the greenhouse. Until a week ago very few of the peas planted outdoors had broken surface. Those in the greenhouse grew steadily. Today I transplanted the greenhouse peas.
Of course the daffodils are out and my comfrey plants have surfaced from the root fragments I planted in December.
The pear and peach trees are the first to blossom – here is a well bedecked pear tree.
A couple days ago I again sprayed the trunks of the fruit trees, but not the blossoms, with neem oil and will keep a good look out for pests. I probably mentioned that my bees survived the winter. They are now very active together with many other types of pollinators.
The precocious kid next door looked at them and said “buzzy bees” and then with a smile looked at me and said “get it?” Some of the greens are flowering.
And if you step closer you see the pollinators.
The spinach, kale, mustard and garlic are now beginning to grow.
Of the vegetables seeded this year, the radishes are doing best. Here they can be seen with yarrow and some daffodils to add cheer to the scene.
Last year I grew yarrow from seed and it did so well in January I took root segments and planted them in each of the raised beds. They have all surfaced and are growing well. Plus the many onion bulbs I planted out in January. I will replant the daffodils. A big annual event for me is releasing the ladybirds. For whatever reason each year they hibernate in the one bathroom – they disappear in the crevices and then suddenly one day, there they are. I collect them by tipping/knocking them into a yogurt container and then I cap the container and walk them to the vegetable area. The photo below is horribly blurred but I kept it since it records the date the ladybirds arrived – all of them within a two day period.
I made 5 trips and with approx 20 ladybirds in each container, I guess I added 100 beneficials and I was pleased to see one of them this morning sunning on a leaf.
I built a large compost heap this year from approximately 200 leaf bags. I previously commented that I have too much brown and too little green ingredients, so I added horse manure which comes with straw to help balance it out.
And the chicken are producing – an average of 8 eggs a day from 10 hens two of which are seniors. Two of the younger hens frequently fly over the paddock fencing to explore and feed. Today I noticed Wanda (abbreviated from wanderer) had discovered the compost heap. She is the daughter of our Buff Orpington rooster and her mum is a New Jersey giant. The only trace of dad is the gold coloring on her neck.