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I am a gardening fanatic...when I’m not gardening, I’m reading about gardening, planning a new garden, starting seeds, propagating new plants, trading, etc., etc.! In between I’m an R.N. at a local hospital, married to a great guy, with 2 grown sons, 25 chickens and a dog (Gigi, a whippet) We have a homestead on our 50 acres, have a huge vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, strawberries, herbs, perennials, daylily and iris beds,....it gets bigger all the time. We press our own apple cider, make our own maple syrup, have bees for honey, and raise chickens for meat and eggs. It is a good life. We have a hoop greenhouse that extends our short season by a month at each end. We heat our house with wood which my husband cuts from our land. We try to be as self sufficient as possible. Of course we compost and mulch. A neighbor of ours PAYS US to take away tons of bedding mixed with goat manure which we find amusing...we would be glad to pay her....but instead she gets lots of veggies and flowers in return, and a clean barn. Gardenweb forums are a wonderful way to learn new gardening techniques, hear from other gardeners, and support each other in our gardening efforts!

Summer 2004- We have embarked on a monumental project this season....bulldozers and backhoes, front end loaders, and muscles and sweat....grading and terracing a huge area, building dry fieldstone retaining walls, planting beds and steps, constructing a 20x30ft pond. When this is done (is it ever done?) we will have a large flat area outside our back door where before there was virtually none...just a steep slope up to our greenhouse and gardenshed. Now we can have a level area to enjoy, entertain, and be able to get our tractor in next to our house to remove snow accumulation that slides off the roof and blocks our windows in the winter! Will post updates....

Fall 2004- Lots of progress on our backyard project, and lots more to go. So far, the pond has been dug, rocks removed from hole, hole lined with old carpeting and a 45mil
epdm liner installed. Pond is filled and looks great. Too late to add plants and fish so look foward to that in spring. The rock edging and waterfall still need to be finished. The stone walls and terraces are about 2/3 done, some terraces are already planted....sedums to spill over walls, flowering shrubs, perennials, grasses, bulbs planted for spring color...the doing and anticipating is even more fun than the end result!

Summer 2005- Pond plants healthy and growing by leaps and bounds, water lilies bloomed! Put 10 goldfish and 1 koi in pond in May, now (August) have at least 30 surviving 2" babies, all
colors, coming to feed with the big guys. Frogs, dragonflies, tadpoles...all kinds of pond wildlife to enjoy.
Our cats have also taken an interest in the pondlife...good thing the pond has steep slopes or they might be able to get a fish. We’ve had to take a frog out of Missy’s mouth...bad kitty. Luckily the frog wasn’t hurt.

Slow progress with the stone walls...it has been brutally hot and humid. Will speed up as the weather cools. All the plants put in the terraces last fall doing well, especially
the sedums and lavenders. The different creeping thymes that I planted in the nooks and crannies are spreading and spilling over the stone steps...beautiful in and out of bloom.

Need to put in a lawn this fall between house and lowest stone wall, an area about 30ft x 70ft. Wondering if we should seed or sod...

see my personal URL for recent pics!

I live in: United States

My zone is: Z4 Central NY

First registered on March 02, 2001 .