Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens

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alexandra garden gate

Yesterday The Girl and I walked through Hyde Park and Kensington gardens. It’s our favorite park in the entire world. Even though it was just above freezing and tiny snowflakes were falling, we spent about 2 hours strolling {and later biking} through the park.

spring flowers

In about another month, the spring bulbs will be blooming like crazy.

restaurant hyde park london

In case you didn’t know, Hyde Park was originally a private hunting ground for Henry VIII. The park remained private until James I opened it to the public, and handed its care over to a park ranger {though, the manicured lawns and landscaping that it is known for today didn’t happen until much, much later}.

serpentine lake hyde park

Hyde Park, as we know it today, is split in two by the Serpentine {a 40 acre recreational lake}.    Hyde Park itself is 350 acres {think how many vegetables I could grow there!}.  Kensington Gardens is next to Hyde Park and is an additional 270 acres.

hyde park london arched trellis

Most people think they are all one in the same, but they were separated into two parks by Queen Caroline in 1728.  With all of that space, it is soooo easy to find a perfect spot for a picnic lunch and some people watching.

barclays bike hire rental london

The park is open from 5:00 a.m. to midnight everyday, and is typically filled with people running or just taking a stroll.  It has awesome bike paths and you can even rent paddle boats.  {Sadly, we couldn’t rent a paddle boat because the boat house is only open from Easter to October 31st.  Sniffle, sniffle.}  If you are more adventurous, you can swim in the Serpentine after June or even ride horses on one of the designated paths.

spring flowers hyde park

Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens are gorgeous. Even when it’s freezing outside and the blooms are far and few between.

Do YOU have a favorite park? If so, where is it, and why do you love it so?

~ Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.



Northwest Home and Garden Show – Tool Sheds, Olive Baskets, Hydroponics, Mushrooms, Tree Faces, Wooden Brooms + More

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hydroponic gardening olive basket

What do you think of these hydroponic  towers? There must have been 3 or 4 different vendors selling the same basic type of set up. I don’t know through, there is something about planting seeds in dirt and walking outside and working the land that appeals to me. I can’t imagine this would give me the same feeling.

And the olive buckets. Every upscale garden center around is selling them. I think even Pottery Barn is caring them. Yes they look cool, but $89 for a galvanized bucket with holes? Hmmmm.

greenhouse bench

I also thought these greenhouse benches were pretty cool too and I really liked the counter tops. They’d be perfect as a potting bench.

grow your own mushrooms

If you are thinking about growing mushrooms from a starter kit, Fungiperfecti is a local company and I have always has great success with their products.

bright ceiling ball lights

How cool would these glowing balls be dangling from the ceiling be? Pretty awesome if you ask me.

top gardening books

I could have sat in the gardening section of University Bookstores booth for hours.

tree faces

I can totally see a tree face in my future.

wooden broom

And these wooden brooms. You couldn’t walk past 20 people without someone carrying one. I’m not sure how much they were { I didn’t want to get sucked into buying one by stopping and listening to the demonstration} but I hope the lady works on commision because she sold a ton of them.

stepping stones with moss

And last but not least…

What a gorgeous garden display. My only question was, when can I move in? If you can swing it, try and make it to this years Northwest Home and Garden show. It will give you enough ideas to keep you inspired for years.

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Mail – Charla From Bellingham, Washington Sends in Her Garden Photos

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Potatoes, artichoke, cabbage, mint, rhubaarb, peas, beans, etc...

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. I hope by sharing other peoples pictures and stories here on One Hundred Dollars a Month we can all have a rock star garden this summer. Keep them coming!

Charla from Bellingham, Washington sent in several gorgeous photos and had this to say:

Hi Mavis,

I live just a little south of Bellingham Wa- we have just under an acre, with a lovely creek and mostly clay soil.  I have been gardening seriously for about 13 years, the last 6 1/2 here in Washington. I did find some pictures of my garden that spans over the last couple of years- unfortunately, last summer I spent most of my time in Gig Harbor helping my sister with her husband who had just entered into hospice, so I pretty much got my garden going in the spring, and it had to fend for itself until September.- but these pictures closely represent my garden.  I could send you pictures of it now, but it’s not a pretty sight!

grow tomatoes in buckets

I have 6 raised beds of various sizes,plus pots, tubs and whatever else I can find to plant in. I have another 15 x 5 foot bed that I have raspberries, 2 blue berry bushes, rhubarb – and this is where I planted corn and bok choy last year.

apple trees

I put in a kitchen garden alongside my greenhouse in 2010, using it for herbs and have actually had good luck with carrots there.  My 3 apple trees (gravestein, belmac and gala) have also given me quite a bit of fruit each year.  My greenhouse is built from reclaimed wood and windows- and although we still have a little work left to do on it- it’s fully functional inside.  My sweet husband even gave me a water spigot inside- so much easier!  It sits right up to my deck, so after a hard days gardening, I can sit, have a cool drink and check out my handiwork.

vegetable garden white picket fence

I tore down my picket fencing in the fall of 2011, but really hated the look of my veggie garden without it- so we bought new pickets, painted and rebuilt the fence- this time a little sturdier.  I plant sweet peas and nasturtiums along the fence line every year- plus marigolds, chamomile and poppies alongside my veggies.

sweet pea flowers

I love color and fragrance in my garden! I am a big perennial gardener as well, so my time is divided between my vegetable gardens and my 8 or 9 perennial beds.  Each year I put in
another bed, I just can’t help myself!

Kitchen garden5-16 kit garden

I’m still getting used to this climate, as I had such bountiful gardens in Michigan, but it’s a challenge that I enjoy.  I start cool/hardy veggies and flowers early in my greenhouse and as I transplant them out to bigger pots, I start to sow the more tender varieties.

greenhouse tomato plants

It’s kind of a conveyer belt effect! I have 2 upright greenhouses that I use to harden off my transplants before planting them out. I keep some tomatoes in my greenhouse and some in 5 gallon pots- I am rotating them out of my garden beds right now- so they won’t go back in for a couple more years.

Thanks for letting me share my garden with you, I’m excited for this year, and have lots of plans for an even better harvest- I look forward to seeing your garden grow!

Happy planting, Charla

dahila flowers

Charla I’m sorry to hear about your sister’s husband. Hopefully we’ll have some great weather this summer for your beautiful garden. You have done an amazing job and your greenhouse seriously rocks!

~Mavis

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Craft made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Northwest Home and Garden Show Pictures

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hobbit house

Yesterday the Girl and I attended the Northwest Home and Garden show in Seattle. The show is going on through Sunday, February, 24 and is a total must see if you are a local gardener. There is a staggering amount of display to visit and we took so many photos it was crazy!

Our favorite display garden of course was this Hobbit House. It had me swooning for low ceilings, moss paths and little bites of elfin foods. If only I could transport this whole scene to my backyard I would have the best garden/art studio on the planet.

vintage garden decor

This year there was a HUGE antique mart too. For the venue, I didn’t think the prices were to bad either. Lot’s of watering cans, old signs, berry baskets, cool chalkboards, and lots and lots of vintage wire items too.

Noethwest home and garden show flowers

Oh, and let’s not forget about the flowers. The Girl ran off with the camera and I now have over 500 pictures of every flower under the moon. I had no idea she was such a sucker for flowers. Now I’m thinking I should plant her a secret garden of some sort. Just for her to photograph. Hmmm.

northwest home and garden show display garden

This lady was a hoot. She sat in her display garden and waved like a real royal. If only I had some tea and biscuits to offer her.

wood pallet garden

Check this out. I cannot remember the name of the plant but I do remember the garden club ladies telling us it was very hard to grow and only does well in very humid climates.

rain barrel black orange blue

In addition to all the flowers, bulbs, display gardens, and demonstrations, there was also a boatload of home and garden vendors as well as numerous artists.

tin man wizard of oz

In a nutshell, this years Northwest Home and Garden show was the awesome possum! We have a ton of pictures so I’ll try and post more later this afternoon.

Peace Out Girl Scouts,.

Have a great day!

~Mavis

 

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Mail – Bob and Sherle From California Share Their Vegetable Garden Photos

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backyard garden harvest

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. I hope by sharing other peoples pictures and stories here on One Hundred Dollars a Month we can all have a rock star garden this summer. Keep them coming!

Check out this story and the amazing backyard garden photos Bob and Sherle from California sent in:

Hi Mavis,

I have been gardening most of my life, either with my dad or my husband of 30 years, mostly in small backyard gardens. As a result of not having a whole bunch of space in which to garden we had had to be very innovative so we could get as much as possible out of the space we do have.

Our garden plot is 20×25′ and we have harvested over 1k from it.

vegetable garden photos

We use concrete reinforcing wire to create “cages” for our plants, so everything grows up instead of out. Our tomatoes often grow to over 10′ tall and produce lots and lots of tomatoes.

tomatoes grown in cages

I usually put up about 100 quart jars of tomatoes every year. We have two connected towers for our green beans and they grow all over it. It’s very nice for picking as well, though green beans seem to be masters at hiding in plain sight. Our cucumbers are planted in “cages”, four plants to a block and they grow all over their cages. My husband or kids need to pick them though as I always break out in hives from them and the squashes.

grow zucchini cucumbers in cages

The zucchini and summer squash grow up round towers and it’s so neat and easy for us to pick the fruits. We even grew cantaloupe in a tower, though we had to support them with little slings while they were getting big. We used nylons to create the hammocks, though they really need something stronger, we just haven’t come up with another solution yet.

grow vegetables in tomato cages

We lay newspaper under the plants and in the walkways and then put down straw to hold the newspaper down which effectively blocks the light thus doing away with anything like weeds. The added benefit is that the tomatoes like the color that’s being reflected up from the straw.

tomato seedlings

We start all of our plants in our little greenhouse. The color tipped toothpicks were painted to match a paint swatch on the seed packet so I knew what was in the pots.

You can see more pictures and read some how to’s in a little book I made through Shutterfly, though this is a digital version at: http://www.gospellearningcenter.com/resources/Garden/Garden.asp

tomato seedlings in greenhouse

This year we have determined to grow squashes and pumpkins in the front yard. I thought I would be able to plant them in pots, but I learned that pumpkin roots are extensive, so they will be planted in the ground.

I love following your blog and you have inspired me to grow 2k pounds this year.

red tomatoes

Holy canolies Bob and Sherle, your garden is GORGEOUS! And those tomatoes are out of sight! I complete confidence that you tow will reach your goal of growing 2,000 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables in your garden this year.

~Mavis

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Craft made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Mail – Garden and Beehive Photos From Connecticut

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SONY DSC

Check out this recent email I received from a reader in Connecticut:

Hi Mavis,

I wanted to join in on the gardening feature because I’m an avid gardener that got on the organic, sustainability, gardening bandwagon years ago. Here’s a little about my garden adventures.

I live in suburban CT, zone 6b, and grow as much as I can squeeze into my 1/4 acre backyard.

Using the companion planting approach, in my 6 raised beds, I grow tomatoes, onions, garlic, basil, peppers, green beans, peas, lettuce, spinach, asparagus, pumpkins, zucchini, butternut squash, watermelon, cucumbers, carrots, cilantro, and nasturiums. I build frames for the vine plants to grow vertically and this allows more space for other plants below.

SONY DSC

Outside of the enclosed beds, I grow broccoli in pots and strawberry plants in window box planters so the chipmunks can’t get to them. Last year, I put in a medicinal herb bed with lemongrass, sage, thyme, fennel, calendula, comfrey, dill, lovage, stevia, feverfew, and bay. This year I’m going to expand the growing space and put in a culinary tea bed and more edible flowers, such as amaranth.

Interspersed around the property are 3 apple trees, that are plagued by apple rust so I might take them out, 2 Red haven peach, 1 Bartlett pear, 1 D’anjou (to cross pollinate the other pear), 2 Brown Turkey fig (grilled figs are yum!), 2 Paw Paw, 1 Nectarine and 1 apricot tree. In winter, I wrap the figs with burlap and frost blankets to protect them from the cold and it looks as if I have ghosts haunting my yard. Under the fruit trees, there are delicious thornless blackberry, raspberry, and 8 blueberry bushes.

SONY DSC

Along the property line on one side, there are legacy grapevines that were there when I bought the house. I’m not sure what kind of grapes they are, but my goal this year is to trim them back and turn them into a useful food rather than a privacy screen. Usually the leaves are harvested for making stuffed grape leaves. Along the shed, I have Kiwi vine growing.

backyard chicken{Eagle the Ameracauna chicken}

We have 9 chickens and 6 ducks, that make the most delicious eggs possible. They live in “The Girls with Feathers” coop I designed and then expanded to fit the ducks in there too. I keep the fowl in a chicken yard, but I let them out to forage near the chicken run in the Summer. Along two sides of the run, I grow hops, to provide some shade for the chickens and to produce hops for my eventual beer brewing that I will begin experimenting with this Fall, and lots of sunflowers.

SONY DSC

I fertilize the trees with rabbit manure from our adopted rescued Angora rabbit. (She grows the most wonderfully soft fur that I’m going to have spun into yarn.) In the basement, we have a vermicompost bin and use the worm castings to fertilize the veg beds. Because I don’t want to risk ecoli contamination, there are separate compost bins allocated specifically for the coop shavings. Every now and then we go down to the beach to clean it up after a storm and carry home buckets of seaweed for the compost piles.

SONY DSC

To pollinate the backyard, I have two beehives, one with Italian and the other with Carniolan bees. In a few weeks, I’m adding two more hives. I bartered 2 ducklings for a top bar bee hive on craigslist and recently acquired a Warre hive. Since everything in this backyard is an experiment of one kind or another, I want to find out if the hive body design effects how robust the bee colony is.

The bees have done an amazing job pollinating my gardens and I love watching them early in the morning from my kitchen window as they fly off in search of pollen and nectar in the Summer. The honey they produce is another plus because I use that instead of sugar. I also have 5 mason beehives spread throughout the garden to encourage the solitary bees to hang around.

There’s a lot of trial and error that goes on in this 1/4 acre, but that’s what makes it a challenge. I know I have written way more than many of the garden posts you’ve featured and I haven’t even gotten to my seed starting plans for the year. ~~*~~

All I can say is WHAT A BEAUTIFUL GARDEN! What an amazing job you have done and your love of gardening really shines though in your pictures. Thanks for sending in your photos.

~Mavis

{Sara from Fox Island’s Garden Tour}

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Craft made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Mail – Robin From Columbus, Ohio Sends in Beautiful Garden Photos

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raised garden beds

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. I hope by sharing other peoples pictures and stories here on One Hundred Dollars a Month we can all have a rock star garden this summer.

Keep them coming!

Check out this story and the amazing backyard garden photos Robin from Ohio sent in:

Four years ago my partner and I bought a foreclosed abandoned sprawling ranch on an acre of land in a suburb of Columbus, Ohio.  We kicked the raccoons out of the attic and started working on creating a sustainable suburban mini-farm.

brown tan rain barrel

Our biggest surprise to date was finding a 16,000-gallon cistern under the house!  We’ve renovated it and now water the acre with rainwater collected off our roof.  All the gutters on the property either go into the cistern or rain barrels.  We’ve put a hand pump on the original well (we have city utilities).  We built a dry creek bed and rain garden to put the sump pump run off to good use.

purple clematis

There was nothing here in the way of landscaping except for a few “Charlie Brown” type Christmas trees.  We’ve added hundreds of perennial flowerbeds, emphasizing native-Ohio plants.  On the edible side, we have veggies from March through December.  We’ve added perennial fruit (strawberries, kiwi, blackberries, blueberries, cherries and raspberries) and apple and peach trees.

red zebra tomatoes

This year we will finally harvest our first asparagus and Jerusalem artichokes.  We have herbs of all kinds, and every veggie you can think of – from a corn patch, potatoes, cold weather crops, peppers and tomatoes out the wazoo.  We are 100% organic and use a lot of compost and aged (free) horse manure.  The soil has improved dramatically. Where there was only dead dry earth, you can now find a million worms.

When it rains, if you’re quiet, you can actually hear the little dudes working their hearts out for us.  Ohio-native plants like Joe Pye Weed, Goldenseal and Black-eyed Susan attract beneficial insects, birds, butterflies, bees and bats.

greenhouse with solar panels

This past year, we added our first set of solar panels on a back shed and built a greenhouse (with the help of our friends).  I plant my veggies in seed trays and put them under lights on my homemade grow table in winter.  Then the cold weather stuff goes out to the hoop house and the less-cold tolerant plants (tomatoes/peppers) go to the greenhouse.  The greenhouse is passively heated via 55-gallon barrels of water.  The food grade barrels I bought on the cheap from the Pepsi plant.

purple lilac

Holy Canolies Robin. You have done an amazing job and I am in LOVE with your fenced vegetable garden {and the wood chip paths too}. Awesome stuff!

~Mavis

Want to see more Garden Tours from around the World? Go HERE.

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Craft made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Mail – Becky From New York Sends in Her Backyard Garden Photos

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raised garden beds bean trellis

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. It is so much fun to see all the different garden set-ups and chicken coops people are using. Just seeing your pictures gives me plenty of ideas I would like to incorporate into my garden this year.

Keep them coming!

Here is what Becky from New York had to say about her backyard garden photos that were taken last summer:

green bean vines

I have been gardening for about 35 years, yes I know hard to believe since I am so young, lol.

I have gotten into the easy no work raise beds and even got my hubby on board. I did put a farm cattle gate up for my pole beans and it worked good, heaver than fencing. I just drilled holes in it and put in screws and bowed it over and did the same on the other side. I plan on putting one on the other side this year.

raised garden bed garden

My friend and I are gardening together this year, she will grow vine plants and I will grow the rest and when they are ready we plan on getting together and dry or can or freeze them.

raised garden beds gardening

She doesn’t have as much space as I have. I am also a “newbie” chicken farmer as I have 8 this year and they are all laying, I put rope Christmas lights up and a space heater for the really cold upstate New York nights like the -15 we just had.

homegrown produce

I am the go to person around here for gardening, If I don’t know I will read and learn about it.

fresh canned corn home canning

Awesome pictures Becky! I am totally going to make a bean trellis now after seeing your photos.

Keep on digging,

~Mavis

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Craft made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Botanical Interests Seed Company Tour

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mavis butterfield botanical interests seed company

As soon as we landed in Denver we hit the road and headed to Botanical Interests seed company in Broomfield, Colorado. When we arrived there was a huge welcome sign for us and two other people. Bill and Marty? Who the heck are Bill and Marty?

Because the sign was on an easel, and multiple sheets of paper had been torn off, we thought hmmm, they must give a lot of tours. But just as we were about to ask Curtis {He and his wife Judy co-own the company}how many tours they give a year, Bill and Marty showed up. With Ryan. My hottie of a horticulturalist online boyfriend.

Which was really awkward, because Bill and Marty were Ryan’s PARENTS!  And it get’s even better. Apparently Ryan’s fiancé works at Botanical Interests too!

Awesome. Almost Wet My Pants.

botanical interests seed company tour

After our little meet and great, Jim the warehouse manager took us on a behind the scenes tour.

bulk seeds

Jim was awesome. Not only did he show us around, but he pointed out large sacks of seeds, showed us where they test the seed that comes in from the different fields and where they lock up all the temperature controlled and specialty seeds. I didn’t notice a wedding band on Jim’s ring finger so if you are from the Denver area, let me know. I’ll try and hook you up.

mavis butterfield

We also got up close and personal with the guys running the seed packet machines.

seed company tour

Botanical Interests sells over 600 different kinds of seeds. So you can imagine these guys pack a lot of seeds on any given day of the week.

seed packet machine

It’s pretty obvious guys are in charge of this area. How do I know that? Do you see the duct tape holding together the seed tray? Need I say more?

botanical interests seed company tour picture

Here is Jim explaining the date on the seed packets to Amber. Clearly Jim did his research and knew Amber needed all the help she could get when it comes to planting a backyard garden.

ellen botanical interets seed company

Oh and this is Ellen. I think she is pretty much in charge of everything. Including judging the new drawings that come in from various Botanical Interests artists. I can only imagine how hard it must be to critique artwork. Yikes. What a tough job.

098

We learned so much from our behind the scenes tour it was awesome.We had no idea until the end of tour that they only give about 3 tours a year. Wowza! How cool was that? So a big thank you to Curtis, Ryan, Jim, Ellen, Judy, Buddy and the rest of the gang at Botanical Interests, we had a blast!

Thank You.

~Mavis

For more information on Botanical Interests, you can check out the Botanical Interests website, follow them on Twitter, Facebook  or visit my {online} boyfriend Ryan’s blog You can also order their new 2013 Garden Seed Catalog if you have not received one already.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Mail | Gardening in Tacoma – Lisa Sends in Her Photographs

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rhubarb  raspberries garden path

Lisa from Tacoma writes:

Ok, I did some digging and found some photos.  They are from this last Spring.  I don’t have any photos of the current state of the garden because really… no one wants to see that.

The total square footage of both gardens (there’s one in the back yard too) is 3200 sq. ft.  I don’t know the total growing space.  I also have edibles in various perennial beds and I’ve been known to grow annual herbs in my window boxes (although dill wasn’t the best choice for that).

garden map

We started with 2 small 4×4 in ground beds in the side yard and then expanded it to 2 5′x10′ and 2 5′x5′ beds.  We quickly outgrew that space and decided to cover up our east lawn.  The original plan was for beds all in nice neat rows.  Looking back that probably would have been the best idea, but everyone comments on the character of my garden.  They would since my east lawn is the majority of my front yard.

wood pea trellis

Our house sits on a corner lot.  The front that faces the main street is grass and nicely landscaped, but turn the corner and you’ll see the vegetable garden.  It is flanked on all sides by perennial beds.  I’ll have to do a post about the evolution of my front yard.  There are only 8 original plants to the whole yard.  One happens to be a daylily that I’ve dug up and divided to make about 20 more.  There are now at least over 200 different plants in the garden now.

summer squash

Last year I didn’t weigh all of my produce so I don’t know exactly how many pounds I grew.  My guess is a good 500 pounds.

This year we are taking on the experiment of growing a giant pumpkin.  The plan is to use my son’s garden (the original 2 5×10 beds) to grow it.  From what I’ve read you’re supposed to dedicate a good 100 sq. ft. to the plant, but we’re going to try to cram it into a smaller space.  I don’t want it taking over the useful garden.

raised garden beds with hoops

This is the bed we grew brassicas in last year.  My husband rebuilt the bed last year so it was sturdier.

summer harvest

This is a small portion of one of our harvests.  The apples came from the Curan apple orchard in University Place.

I don’t know about YOU, but I am totally drooling over Lisa’s backyard garden. Clearly she spends all her free time growing yummy fresh fruits and veggies for her family.

Way to go Lisa!

~Mavis

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Craft made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

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