A Little Bit of Winter Gardening…

I got a little bit of gardening done this weekend. I went through the cell packs I planted in the late fall and got rid of the pots which failed to grow seedlings. I found some Mushrooms in some.

Mushroom Mushroom Mushroom...

There were Celtuce that surprisingly survived, so I planted those into a large Daiso pot.

Transplanted Celtuce

I also pulled a lot of weeds near Veggie Beds 1 and 2 and pick off damaged and dead leaves from plants.

Litchi Tomato Flower Buds

As I was weeding I noticed that there was another volunteer Litchi Tomatoes, making the total to three plants now. They are also starting to form flower buds. These are sure strong plants… or maybe they like cooler weather. I’ll have to pot these up into a large container and give Litchi Tomatoes another try.

Calendulas

Around the beds, volunteer Calendulas and Daffodils are blooming.

Daffodils

Spring Starflower

I even caught the first Spring Starflower to bloom, which means there are about 100 more to come.

Fruit Flower Buds

Also starting to bloom are some fruit trees, including the two unknown Asian Plums, the grafted Inca Plum and surprisingly a very very early grafted Anna Apple. I’ll have to start grafting Plums next weekend.

I wish I had more time to garden.

Local Quilt and Garden Events 2016

The new year will be here soon, which is when I like to search online for the dates and times of local gardening shows and events.

Floating Gardens

Saturday, January 9, 2016
CRFG Santa Clara Valley Chapter Exchange
Emma Prusch Park, Multicultural Center, 647 S King Rd, San Jose, CA 95116
10am open to Members
11am to 2pm open to the General Public
https://scvcrfg.wordpress.com/activities/

Saturday, January 16, 2016 – 12 to 3pm
CRFG 2016 Golden Gate Chapter Scion Exchange
Ed Roberts Campus, 3075 Adeline Street, Berkeley
(next to the Ashby BART station)
http://www.crfg.org/chapters/golden_gate/scionex.htm

February 18-21
QuiltCon West 2016
Pasadena, CA
http://quiltconwest.com/

February 26-28, 2016
Pacific Orchid Exposition
Fort Mason, San Francisco
http://www.orchidsanfrancisco.org/orchid-events/pacific-orchid-expo-poe/

March 16-20, 2016
San Francisco Flower & Garden Show
San Mateo Event Center, San Mateo, CA
http://sfgardenshow.com/

March 19-20, 2016
East Bay Heritage Quilters –┬áVoices in Cloth 2016
Craneway Pavillion, 1414 Harbour Way, Richmond, CA
http://www.ebhq.org/quilt-shows/vic2016

Saturday, April 9, 2016 – 1pm
CRFG Santa Clara Valley Chapter bi-monthly meeting
Emma Prusch Park in San Jose. Open to all. Topic will be on citrus and avocados, with discussion of year-round production. We will also hold the greenwood scion exchange.
https://scvcrfg.wordpress.com/activities/

Saturday, April 16, 2016 – 9:30am
2016 Annual Dahlia Tuber and Cutting Sale
Golden Gate Park, County Fair Building, 9th and Lincoln, San Francisco
http://sfdahlias.org/

April 30-May 1, 2016
Vallejo Piecemakers 2016 Sew Amazing Quilt Show
http://vallejopiecemakers.org/activities/2016-sew-amazing-quilt-show/

Sunday, May 15, 2016 – 10am to 4pm
Vallejo Garden Tour
http://vallejogardentour.com/

June 11-12, 2016
San Francisco Succulent and Cactus Society
Annual Show and Sale
http://www.sfsucculent.org/annual_show_sale.html

September 6-7, 2016
The 2016 Heirloom Exposition
Sonoma County Fairground, Santa Rosa, CA
http://theheirloomexpo.com/

October 13-16, 2016
Pacific Internation Quilt Festival
Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA
https://www.quiltfest.com/upcoming-shows-and-events/pacific-international-quilt-festival/

This Weekends Gardening

Started Saturday waking up early to get to a 9am Vallejo Garden Club meeting. It was a nice meeting with a guest speaker who showed some mosaics and other home and garden stuff made with Mexican tiles. I showed my Lithops to the club as my show and tell. Surprisingly, a bunch of members didn’t know much about them.

After the meeting, I headed over to Mid City Nursery to see if they had any Dinosaur Kale starts. I ended up buying:
– Dinosaur Kale
– Red Russian Kale
– French Sorrel
– Astro Arugula
– Mottistone Lettuce
– Oregon Sugar Pod Peas
– Green Leaf Swiss Chard
– Spanish Rojo Garlic

Mid City Nursery Purchases

Before going to the Vallejo Piecemakers open sew, I went to Hancock Fabrics to look for dark grey fabrics. I was planning to sew about 25 more blocks to add to my TIVX quilt, but I only had enough time to cut the fabrics and mark where to cut and sew the blocks. I’ll sew them later when I have time.

Once I got home, I was able to do a little bit of gardening. I checked all the Brassicas and picked of White Cabbage caterpillars and eggs. There wasn’t much caterpillars since I picked them off last week, but there were a lot of eggs. I gotta stay diligent about removing those.

I pulled up some old Swiss Chard, Bush Beans and Carrots plants in 10 gallon pots that were dying off. I replaced them with a pot of Astro Arugula and a pot of Mottistone Lettuce.

I then went around the front garden and pulled up all the Crab Grass that I can. There was a lot!… But it slowly getting under control.

Another Quick Late Night Planting

I seem to be on a Salad Greens planting kick and I really want to get some Mizuna, so after work I stopped by Orchard Supply Hardware to see if they had any. They didn’t, but I found a jumbo six-pack of Salad Greens that contained Leaf Lettuce, Arugula and Radicchio. After dinner and washing the dishes, I planted it right away into a large Daiso pot, that I generally use for Salad Greens.

Another quick late night planting. I'm on a salad greens kick and stopped by Orchard Supply Hardware after work to see if they had any Mizuna for sale. They didn't have any, but I got a jumbo six-pack of these salad greens which includes Lettuce, Arugula

I also bought a seed packet of Renee’s Garden Mild Mustard Mix, which at least contains Mizuna seeds, along with other Mustards.

Also, we had a bit of rain… well, not hard rain, but a strong sprinkle or drizzle. I’m not sure it’s enough to penetrate inches into the dry soil, but it’ll increase some moisture.

Late Night Salad Planting

Today’s harvest was a variety of Lettuce and Parsley for a Lettuce/Parsley Salad.

Today's harvest: Various Lettuce and Parsley for a Lettuce/Parsley Salad.

This inspired me to sow various Salad Greens seeds that I want to use up since they are old or getting old (and I can’t just throw them away).

I planted:
– Mustard ‘Crimson Red’ (2012)
– Celtuce (2013)
– Garland Chrysanthemum ‘Maiko’ (?)
– Lettuce ‘Grand Rapids’ (2010)
– Lettuce ‘Simpson Elite’ (2006)
– Lettuce ‘Marvel of Four Season’ (2010)
– Lettuce ‘Mighty Red Oak’ (2006)
– Lettuce ‘Romaine Paris Island Cos’ (2004)
– Corn Salad ‘Bistro’ (2007)

Salad Green seeds planted.

I really not counting on a lot to germinate, but if I get a few plants out of these, that’ll be good.

Sunday Gardening

It was very overcast today and cooler, such a big different than the close to 100┬░F temperatures we have been having the past 3-4 days.

I started working in the garden late and started by digging up the Purple Potatoes that really didn’t grow much. I only harvested a few small tubers, but found the biggest spider that I have ever seen in our garden.

This has to be the largest Spider I've ever found in our garden. Anyone know what kind it is?

I then potted up some of the starts from the cell-based that I just purchased, since I won’t be planting them out in the garden soon. That way they get a head start on growing. These included:
– Collards (leftover from an earlier planting)
– Flowering Cabbage ‘Red’
– Onions ‘Walla Walla Sweet’

I also removed the dying Zinnias from the front garden.

I planted more Salad Green pots including:
– Lettuce ‘Buttercrunch’
– Lettuce ‘Locco Rosso’

I also potted some succulent cuttings that were rooting:
– Kalanchoe hildebrandtii (3 rooting leaves)
– Aeonium ‘Cubic Frost’

Garden Transformation

This morning, I woke up early (for a Saturday). I was looking forward to going to the nursery to see if they had any Cabbage and Lettuce plants.

I first went to Walmart and checked the garden center and found a couple of succulents that I liked. One was a Rock Purslane (Calandrinia spectabilis) that I’ve been looking for for a while now. Who knew that out of all places, Walmart would have it. The second was Pachysedum ‘Ganzhou’ which had a cool color. I’ve been checked the vegetable section and found a 9-pack of Bonnie’s Best Cabbage and Buttercrunch Lettuce.

My name is Joel... and I'm a plant addict.

I then drove to Mid City Nursery to see what they had. I ended up with a few plants including:
– Onions ‘Walla Walla Sweet’
– Cilantro ‘Slo Bolt’
– Flowering Cabbage ‘Red’
– Shasta Daisy ‘Goldfinch’

The owner came up to me and ask if I needed any help. So I asked him why my Kumquat plant has dying branches. He asked if I had it in the ground or in a pot I replied in a pot and he said maybe its not getting enough water. So I’m hoping that his explanation was correct and that my Kumquat doesn’t have a disease.

When I got home, I decided to pull out the Zucchini plants because they were not doing well and it didn’t look like they would produce any more fruits. In its place, I planted Portuguese Kale. I also pulled what pot of Swiss Chard that were also not doing well. I added new compost and planted 6 Buttercrunch Lettuce plants.

I also pulled all my Tomatoes in the Self Watering Rain Gutter Grow System #2.

I think the Tomatoes are done for the year... so I'll be pulling them out and planting Cabbage in its place. The green in the photo is Parsley which are starting to bolt.

I planted the new Cabbage into each pot.

I'm going try to grow Cabbage this year. Wish me luck because I have never had good luck with Cabbage.

In the Square Foot Garden, I planted 2 squares of the Walla Walla Sweet Onions.

Growing Citrus with Less Water Talk

I attended a talk hosted by Annie’s Annuals about growing Citrus trees with less water. The speaker talked about a lot of topics related to Citrus. He mentioned that California has historically been a dry area and the recent years (I can’t remember how much exactly, maybe hundreds) has been wetter than normal, which we have been getting used to. So now with the drought in California, it’s pretty much just getting back to normal. He showed some drip systems and highly suggested using mulch. Mulch, mulch, mulch, mulch, mulch! He also uses straw like I do, so I felt like I’m doing it right. He also mentioned that Citrus grow very well in containers and suggested using Coir Mulch as 1/3 or the soil you use. This will really help retain water.

I attended a very informative 'Growing Citrus with Less Water' talk at Annie's Annuals &  Perennials... then went plant shopping!!!

After the talk, I went around the nursery and went plant shopping. I got a couple of plants.

My new plants from Annie's Annuals & Perennials. (top to bottom, left to right) Kale 'Richmond' Pride' (Purple Tree Collard), Sunburst Aeonium, Dandelion 'Red Rib', Red Russian Kale, Blue Vein Sweet Pea, Oscularia caulescens, Cat's Tail Aloe and Goji Berr

The good thing is that I didn’t have to spend any cash, because I was about to use a gift certificate that they gave me when they used one of my photos.