Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Around The House and Gardens & Gardening In The New Orleans Area

Here it is!  Warm weather is here to stay.  It's been in the high 60's at night and the high 70's during the day.  The rains have started just in time to water in all the newly planted seeds and plants.  The mulberries have ripening berries on them and the loquats are loaded with small sweet yellow plums.  These evergreen trees are some of my favorite if used right in a landscape and are great in a permaculture garden.

Really if you live in this area you should have tomato, eggplant and pepper transplants in the ground.  Corn, squash, melon, okra, beans, cucumbers, sunflowers, zinnias, marigolds, etc...should be planted by seed as quickly as possible if not already done. 

Don't bother planting carrots, cabbage, broccoli, collards, mustards, parsley, cilantro, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, garlic, onions, now, they all do best in the winter time here.  Our climate is very different from other areas, but once you start ignoring the majority of garden books and pay attention to the experience of local gardeners, your garden will fare much better.

Here is the loquat I love so much, with it's abundance of drippy sweet/tart fruit!
 Unfortunately we have killed two large water moccasins in our yard this spring.  I hate to kill any wild life, but I cannot afford to have aggressive poisonous snakes with my girls running around the yard.  These snakes do not always run.  They will stand their ground and challenge you.  Also they hide in unexpected places.  One was in the wood pile which my husband was organizing.  Fortunately he saw the movement. 

I also have found two skins.  Not sure if they belong to the two we killed or not.  We always identify snakes before deciding to kill them or not.  Most snakes are harmless, and we love to share our yard with them.

 Water moccasins or cotton mouths are abundant in our area.  If you want to get an up close one on one experience with the swamp and these snakes and gators, be sure to visit Jean Lafitte park off of Barataria and walk the boardwalk through the swamp.  I'm sure you'll see more than one of these fat snakes.
 The cilantro is seeding.  I just found out that cilantro and coriander are the same.  Here are the coriander seed forming.  I plan to save them for planting and cooking.
 Beets among the eggplant.  See the arugula seed pods falling over near the eggplant?
 The pergola area is surrounded by roses, clumps of chives, and apple mint.  I planted the apple mint in the path because it is so hardy and releases it's wonderful aroma when stepped on.
 The okra re-seeded freely.  I plan to relocate some of these seedlings and pull the rest.  I have planted my oh so delicious pineapple tomatoes in this bed so...the okra must move!
 The herb wheel is looking spectacular.
 The left bed is pole Lima beans.  The right is gypsy tomatoes and two types of cucumbers.
 Pink flamingos in the front garden.
 I planted the front garden up with a few begonias while the perennials get their footing for this year.
 My log that once was a bench is crumbling, so I planted some impatiens in the holes.  Once the log totally deteriorates, I'll make a Hugel Kulture bed there.
 Loving this rose my friend Connie gave me.  It was rooted from a rose bush that survived hurricane Katrina. 
 It's huge puffs of electric pink roses are riveting!
 A beekeeper put five hives on my property!  He's going to teach me how to care for bees!  So excited!
 My chickies are doing just fine.  I think they asked me to tell you hello!

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