Monday, May 26, 2014

Spring and Gardening in Prince Edward Island

We are having a late spring this year it seems. After a very long, hard winter and so looking forward to gardening at our new home, it's been disappointing to have so few warm, sunny days. On the positive  side, the cooler, wet days keep me inside unpacking the many boxes that still await me.

We are still not living in our house, thank heavens for good-natured, understanding and caring in-laws. Jim's brother and wife have gone the extra mile for us, letting us live with them these many months. Jim has lived here with them since last September when he was fortunate enough to get a job on the island. I arrived in December, left in March to finish packing up our house and moved here again to stay April 1st. Our farmhouse is just up the road from our in-laws so it's very handy. I can walk there in under 15 minutes.

We are making good progress inside our wee farmhouse, but one job begets another and another. We have ordered our kitchen cupboards and they should arrive within the next two weeks..We have finished painting our back entrance plus Jim built a ceiling height cupboard with shelves for all my laundry detergent etc., as that is where our washer and dryer will go. The poor dining room is a storeroom at present and often used as my hubby's workshop. We cut and paint boards in there and it seems to be the catch-all room. The living room is also a storeroom at present, filled with unpacked boxes and furniture. Some days I feel so overwhelmed when I go up there to work.

As well as the inside work, I've been busy outside when weather permits planting more flowers, especially perennials, many which I brought with us. I purchased two forsythia bushes which I planted, a Japanese maple and a hydrangea. I went to a plant sale in Montague Saturday so purchased a black currant bush, more day lilies, a primrose, lily of the valley plus a few other plants. I'd much rather be outside working in the gardens but the black flies are also here and chewing on me minute by minute. For some reason they like to bite me more than my hubby.

It's been so cool off and on the tulips I planted last year are taking their time to open. This fall I will add some daffodils to my beds. All the hostas I brought from Ontario are doing well, as are my bleeding hearts, my favorite being my white one. Hubby built me a great gardening bed which stands a little over waist height so I don't have to bend over to plant my veggies in it..I'm so pleased with it, I will be putting in an order for several more. I purchased several white plastic gardening beds but one must still bend or stoop over to plant them.

Our fields have been planted with potatoes this year and we were told in three weeks when we see the little green shoots pop up out of the ground, to dig up some tiny little potatoes. We will have potatoes all summer and be able to store some in the fall..The lettuce, onions and peas I planted early are up but with frost warnings last night I'm wondering if I started planting too soon. I did cover my one planter of annuals.

I read many years ago that whatever soil you have in your yard, it can be amended and improved with many different types of gardening soils and fertilizers but ultimately whatever bush, tree etc., that you plant has to make it's way in the soil that came with your yard. I wondered if I was overthinking what I should add to my veggie and flower gardens here as once the roots pass through whatever I've added, they have to survive in this red island soil..So it's an experiment I suppose seeing what will survive by my just adding fertilizer, 3 in 1 Mix with some seafood compost added in. The test will be the end results but what I planted one and two years ago seems to be surviving.

Another big test for me is to not dig up too many flower beds and end up with more than I can comfortably look after. Hubby is hoping I'll have the lawn cut before he gets home from work in the evening with our "new to us" second hand riding lawn mower. My very first vehicle!

I'm trying hard to keep my spirits up what with the discouraging cool weather, the rain and the house not finished yet. Our first guest arrives in mid-June, one of my brother's is coming out this way on his motorcycle so won't mind roughing it inside the house..My hubby's daughter wants to set a date to come out with our granddaughter, so the push will be on to get settled once and for all. The washer and dryer arrive this week and phone hook-up goes in, so I expect we are looking at moving into our "unfinished" house sometime in June. I imagine one of my most exciting blogs will be when I'm able to write "we are in, it's all finished" but is one ever finished in a house, new or otherwise? There always seems to be something to do. Right now I'm off for my morning coffee, then I'll make plans to see what boxes I can unpack today. It's supposed to rain later, so gardening is on hold once again.

Thanks for all your positive comments for those who leave them and I wish everyone a wonderful summer when it arrives! Our new life here is quite the journey and we certainly can't say we are bored..but just once it might be nice to say..'I have nothing to do!"