Garden Urges

In the first couple of days after we moved into our new house there were fierce winds that whipped through our back yard, rattling gutters and tearing at trees. My poor little cumquat tree lost a lot of foliage and is looking a little sad as a result, despite its new position in the sun and being exposed to the rain as an added bonus. It might be time to give it a prune. It’s covered in a lot of dead wood from its years spent on our shady balcony and according to Burke’s Backyard, now is the time chop chop chop.

Last time we had a rental property with a garden we were going through a permaculture, veggie growing kind of phase for about half a year. Big-P made new garden beds, we planted a huge herb-spiral and composted, mulched and sowed many packets of organic seeds. Then we got really busy with work and thesis writing and life and the garden went to seed. There was little incentive to pull it back into order when we knew we were going to be leaving in the not too distant future. So this time we are being much more reserved… there is a sheltered sunny spot around near the clothes line that would be perfect for a herb bed, but then I know we may only be here for a year (unless we are lucky enough to be able to stay on longer) and we would be better off not blowing large amounts of money and time on another rental yard and put things into pots that we can take with us instead. But when the sun is shining like it is today and I can imagine how nice Spring will be and I read the plant journals over at You Grow Girl and I get that urge to plant a crop of something… anything!

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20 Responses

  1. i tried starting a garden earlier this summer, but the seeds must have been really bad, because they would hardly sprout. i even decided to put them in a greenhouse like environment, darned martha stewart seeds.

  2. says:

    well, believe it or not, im another fan of you and of course your site. i cant say i know much about computors but i know what i like and your work is definatly on my like list!! 😛 e-mail me if you get a chance, but if not, have fun as a mother and i wish you luck with everything.(when i was 6 i said i wanted 9 kids, argh! please no!)

  3. Oh, I thought that herb spiral was at a community garden? Is it too far away now? 🙁
    I know what you mean about getting the gardening bug. I don’t have it yet but when the weather warms up, watch out!

  4. Love the site! I’ve been a fan of your graphics for quite a while now. And I just HAD to comment cause I’d be the first one to do so in this post. Muahahahah!

  5. says:

    You should plant something in your garden :). After all, life is about planning, but it’s also about living, and you may be there for much longer than you expect.

  6. says:

    Good luck with the new house and new baby! We’re getting our first house tomorrow and have big plans about gardening, herb gardens and grape vines – should probably start with buying a lawn mower though!

  7. I think it is always worth putting a bit of cheery colour in the garden, even if it is only a rental.
    The way I look at it is that I would spend $10-15 on cut flowers but a few punnets of seedlings cost the same and last so much longer.

    Plant the herbs and enjoy them. You can always dig them up if you move.

  8. says:

    if your cumquat is in a pot, I’d give it lots of water, ideally soak it in a bigger pot, or in a laundry tub, or something, then after about 12 hours take it out, and let it drain, and give it maybe 2 weeks before pruning off anything that looks dead … and remember, clean your secateurs between plants! best wishes

  9. I agree that seeds are a good idea. Or you could just grow annuals. That way you get the satisfaction of growing things without the commitment or the expense of perennials.
    Containers are also a good idea simply because you don’t have all the work of digging and amending the soil.

    Plus with seeds you can do what I do and buy a few packs and then trade your leftovers for other seeds with friends. We have a seed trade on the You Grow Girl forums as well.

  10. hi Claire =)I’ve been a fan of your site for several years now =) I love your illustrations. Good luck with your cumquat tree, I hope it flourishes once more.

  11. says:

    i’m sure you’ve heard this enough but, i’ve been a great fan of your site for some time now. i love your illustrations. good luck with the baby (love the baby-X blog) as well as the new house.

  12. Hi Claire,It’s Reid, I was just talking to Rob and he told me about all the comments you’ve been getting, so here’s another. Tash says plant Lavender! Its smells nice and relaxes you.
    See you soon.

  13. when don burke says it’s time to chop, you know you have to chop-chop! 🙂
    btw i love seeing your belly grow in your pictures over the months. gorgeous.

  14. Now I want to keep a plant journal. But from the plant’s point of view.

  15. hello claire,
    i’m from California, USA and I’m also a big fan of your artwork and site – i am the proud owner of a Loobylu mug! =)

    Just wanted to share a really helpful gardening site: There’s a forum for Oz green thumbs as well.

    Best of luck with your garden!

  16. says:

    hmm the html didn’t work so here’s the link to the Oz forum:

  17. says:

    Plant cherry tomatoes and then you can pick and eat them whenever you feel like it. Yum!

  18. Hi Claire!!!!How’s the lil baby inside you doing????Luff you!!!And your graphics^_^