Hello, and welcome to my blog! This week I’d like to take a moment to reflect on what I’m thankful for in relation to my garden. This seems appropriate now, as Thursday is Thanksgiving in America. I’m so glad that our family still celebrates Thanksgiving here in Ireland, although it has shifted to the weekend to accommodate everyone’s schedules. It is such a wonderful opportunity to be with family and give thanks for our blessings. For today’s post, I’ll be joining The Propagator’s meme ‘Six on Saturday’ as I show you what I’m thankful for in the garden.
1 – My husband. 🙂 I have to say that my husband has always supported me, and the garden is no exception. There was basically nothing in the yard when we moved here and he has helped me to create what we have today. All of the heavy lifting in the garden is done by him, as is a lot of the planting – and replanting, and without complaint! He also built the arch (above his head in the picture) for me this year, based solely on my request for an arch to hold pumpkins. I am very thankful for him!
2 – Pumpkin arch. This was such a joy to work with this year! We really weren’t sure if it would hold the pumpkins, or if the pumpkins would hold up, but it sure did and they sure did. They grew about 2/3 the way up the arch, so I’m hoping to get them all the way up next year (of course!). The Red Kuri squash are a fabulous color to have in among the green Hokkaido squash and of course the orange pumpkins, although they are green for most of the growing season. The arch is actually four arches, along with fencing and stakes to secure everything. It was quite a job to create, but as I mentioned above, my husband did a great job.
3 – The new vegetable and flower bed area. This was another project that started as an idea in my head and came about with my husband’s hard work. I had learned a tremendous amount from the similar raised bed set-up which we previously had in this same spot. We decided to make a clean go of it and had the area totally dug out. Ah, a clean slate! We mapped things out based on what I like to grow. One of my favorite new things that we did this time around was to have thicker (eco-friendly) sleepers. They just look nicer. Also, the Hoggin, a compactable ground cover, has worked out great around the beds and I really like the way it looks. We’re not completely finished with this project, but hopefully we’ll get the last bits done over the coming year. I’m delighted with how well the sunflowers, sweet pea, and squash did here!
4 – Our fruit trees and shrubs. Is there anything nicer than home grown fruit? We have eating and cooking apples, pears and blueberries. We have a fig tree, too, but I’ll save judgement on that until we actually get to eat a fig. This year we managed to figure out a decent way to cover the blueberries, keeping the birds out for most of the season. I’m sure the birds were disappointed as they’ve enjoyed the blueberries over quite a few years! There are a few different varieties and I can say that the small blueberries are just as tasty as the great big ones. As for the pears, we had two delicious – and huge – pears this season. That is down from the start of the season when we had more than a dozen of them. I’ve had a tough time with this pear tree, unfortunately, but we’ll keep trying. Thankfully, the apples are very low maintenance and provide plenty of delicious apples for us to enjoy.
5 – Birch trees. This was a big decision on my part last year. In the past, I’ve done things in small, incremental ways. So the decision to have five tall trees planted here was challenging to me. But I am so thankful that I did it! The bark of the Birch trees is such a pretty color, and their tall structure is something the garden needed. This also gave me the opportunity to create another flower bed (you can never have enough flowers!). I have managed to have flowers blooming here throughout the entire year, from hellebores, to iris, poppies, rudbeckia and persicaria.
6 – Chickens. Having chickens as pets is such a treat for me. It is something that I waited to do but it was definitely worth it. I’m glad that they have a large run and that they can hang out under the hedge, too (there is fencing in the hedge which should keep them safe). They are chatty and friendly and generally easy to manage. Oh, and of course they lay eggs!
There’s so much more to be thankful for! But I’ll stick to the ‘six’ for the meme. 🙂 I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, if you celebrate it. As the Covid cases go up, and life gets a bit crazy again, I especially hope that you are doing well, and staying safe and healthy.
Your husband is definitely a keeper! You have created a wonderful garden.
I think he is, too! Thank you so much. The garden is definitely my happy place!
Oh what a wonderful post! The pumpkin arch is amazing.
Thank you so much. Yes, I was very pleased with my husband’s work on the arch!
Love your garden, and your ideas. I too have created, with the help of my BH, an arch using individual arches (£10 from Amazon, am I allowed to say?) and use mine mainly for runner beans which I love and the odd squash. But love your orange squash…will add to my list for 2022! I too love white birch, and have 3 multi stemmed ones in a bed of winter dogwood ‘Midwinter Fire’ to cheer me up through the cold winter months (at the front of our house)
Hi Hilary, We have a lot in common! Thank you for your kind words, I’m glad you like my garden. Yes, the arch ‘pieces’ weren’t dear, although putting it all together, with the fencing materials, did add up (but still reasonable). The Red Kuri squash (it’s orange most of the season and then turns a redish orange when it is mature) is tasty, too! Definitely worth planting. Thanks for stopping by and saying hello! 🙂
A wonderful, giving garden! Well done to you both.
Thank you, Caroline. It is a labor of love. The garden truly gives in so many ways. 🙂
What a beautiful garden you have! 🙂 Keep up the good work!
Thank you so much, Anita! I appreciate the kind words. I’m thankful that gardening brings me such joy. 🙂
Me too! I love it!! I will have to post some pics on my blog soon too 🙂