Friday, July 1, 2016

Returning to the Crazy Horticulture Girl Life

Tried the Real World

So about 3 months or so after I started this blog back in 2012, I got a 'real job' working with commercial growers. I loved working with the growers, the paperwork however...not so much. With my husband working on the most southern part of the state. I finally gave in. It's time to put family first. 

After constant pushing and haranguing (yes that is a word), my mother convinced me to resurrect my original blog, Crazy Horticulture Girl. Why? After getting all three of my degrees in horticulture, may be she's right (*gasp*) and that I have a lot of knowledge to offer. My blog will allow me to work around staying at home mom shtick and experimenting with my various horticulture and DIY projects that I get wrapped into. 

So I'm inviting everyone back to watch and learn how crazy fun horticulture can be ....with me the Crazy Horticulture Girl, Cami.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Awesome Upcycle Christmas Gift

So this year for Christmas, Wisdom (Mom) went handmade & upcycle which I really love.  She made two aprons from a pair of jeans that no longer fit (too big! Go Mom!)  I had to share mine because I'm in love with it!  She used scrap fabric that was given to her for the trim, waist tie, and pocket.  

If anyone is interested in making one, let me know. I'll try to get a tutorial up.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Wow! What a Crazy Year it has been!

In a span of 6 weeks in early 2011, I went from unemployed with no chance of getting unemployment benefits to being employed at a great place.  Unfortunately, it took all my time and energy!  So now I've made a commitment to try to keep my blog updated.  I've decided to add some more projects in hopes of encouraging me to post regularly.  I'm going to include my DIY projects which include our wedding planning. I'll still be blogging about new FL gardening projects, but I will be including those that are running in VA with my other half. So here is to 2012! Happy Gardening!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Spring has run into Summer Already!?

A lot of activities have been going on!  I'm going to just list off some of the highlights from the past months (February and March).
1.  We had cold frames constructed to help alleviate some the plant build up in the house (we had over 100 newspaper pots with seedlings).  It gets crowded in there from January to mid-March.

2.  Had a failure with the egg shell pots. We didn't properly install drainage in the egg shells by poking holes in the bottom.  Dampening off and water logging became a problem.
3.  Had a MAJOR success with the newspaper pots. We saved at least 10 US$ on pots this year.  It's about 3 US$ for 50 pots.  And we had over 100 newspaper pots filled with zinnas, tomatoes, coleus, and other annuals.
4.  Harvested all the beets, swiss chard, and carrots.  It was so sad to see them go, but it got up to 80+ degrees F by mid-March. The higher the temperatures on cold vegetables the more likely they will taste bitter (cabbage, kale, lettuce, etc.) and bolt (go to seed).  So I spent a lot of time in the kitchen cleaning all the vegetables up for storage. We chose to blanch and freeze the swiss chard and beet greens. The carrots were cleaned, placed in zip top plastic storage bags, and put into the refrigerator crisper drawer. The beets, I canned them using a 1 to 1 ratio of apple cider vinegar/beet juice mixture (also a 1:1 ratio), sugar, and 1/2 tsp of ground cloves. A great resource for canning and food preservation is: Putting Food By .  I have an older copy, which I picked up at the public library book sale. It's a must have if you plan on preserving any of your harvest by canning.
5.  Summer vegetable garden preparation.  I tilled the summer vegetable garden with our weed wacker roto-tiller attachment.   We plan our laying out our drip tape at the proper spacing and direct seeding our corn, squash, and beans ( later today, I hope!).

6.  Transplanted most of our summer flowers.  Mostly, we grow our own Zinnas, but we also visit the 'mark-down racks at our local hardware superstore (insert Lowe's).  My mom loves Zinnas and they are great cut flowers for bouquets in the summer months.

 What we find in the mark-down racks are usually over watered or sun burnt plants.  With the right care, if they aren't beyond redemption, those plants will bounce back and be an inexpensive addition to our yard.  I'll gladly pay 4 US$ for 6 New Wave petunias that would have cost 8 US$ from the front of the garden center.  All they need is to be dried out, cut back, and planted in a sunny location.

Good Luck and Happy Gardening!!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Winter Garden Harvest

This past week, we were able to harvest some carrots and broccoli.  The carrots went directly into the soup pot once they were scrubbed clean and chopped, but the broccoli was blanched and frozen for another day's enjoyment.  And as you can see from the picture on the right, our carrots aren't overly large. This is due to 1) very cold winter weather, 2) our winter garden is in a slightly shady spot, and 3) not thinning as much (we wanted fingerling carrots) which cramped them some.  Our planting date was back in September, if that gives you an idea on how slow things have been for us.

Happy Gardening!!

Friday, January 28, 2011


Other than harvesting, I think seed germination is my favorite part about horticulture.  (I know sounds funny but the beginning and the end are my favorites. What happened to middle, right?) It probably has to do with the idea of new life, getting to count my "children", and making firm plans for those "children's" future.  Yesterday, I noticed our little eggshell 'pots' had some zinnia seedlings sprouted.

eggshell 'pots' with Zinnia seedlings (date is wrong on photo)

We also have basil and yarrow that has sprouted in our conventional (plastic) 16 cell flats that we are reusing.  Yes! We are growing basil, again. (insert groan)  Maybe this year, we will actually stay on top of harvesting it often.
Anyways, Happy Gardening!

Some little neat things we do to prepare for spring

Some times it's the little things that count!  Last spring, we seeded many many flowers into plain trays without labels.  We just stuck the top of the seed packet into the soil and hoped for the best.  After spending a good portion of our early summer trying to figure out if we have Shasta daisies or not. The other half of the garden adventure duo (my mom, Lydia) came up with an idea.  Let's use Popsicle sticks.  I don't know about you, but Popsicle's lost their appeal back when I was 13. So I was not looking forward to this, but I have to say the other half did me proud (and all the work on eating them).  If you decide to go this route, like us, make sure you soak the sticks in a 5% (or so) bleach solution to clean them up, rinse and dry.  We stored ours in a unused canning jar (we have a lot of those around for obvious preservation).

The other really neat little thing we did this year was make a seed organizer.  I know what you may be thinking! Seeds should be stored in a cool dry place (air tight containers inside the refrigerator works well).  Yes, they do, and I would love to store them in our refrigerator as I have done at my "work".  It is not always possible. So the next best thing is...

Seed organizer

A shoebox!?  I know crazy, but I am the "Crazy Horticulture Girl".  I love to reuse and recycle as much as the next person. This idea kind of came upon me while we were cleaning up around the house.  I cut to flaps off the dog cookie box to make the dividers and wrote on the inside.
Again, if you are anything like us, seeds tend to get put back in haphazard manner.  I think I stared at a open packet of pickling cucumber seeds in our bathroom for months until one of us decided to throw them out.  Horrible and sacrilegious, I know!  So this little box of seeds will keep us together and organized (hopefully) for a year or two to come.
inside the organizer

 I thought these ideas were pretty cool and easy things to-do while you wait for spring to come along.

Happy Gardening!