Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Festival season has begun - The Works

Anna:  It's that time of year again.  No, not storm season (though it is that, too).  It's festival season in Edmonton.  At the moment, we've got The Works Art and Design Festival.  Here are just a few of the photos I took today.  (You can also check out my favorite artist here.)


Every year, a pair of arches are painted during the festival.  This is the one on the south end of the Square.  Every year, I look forward to seeing how they turn out.


There are a couple of tents with these.  Smart Cars covered in papier mache.

I really hope there are not real cars under there, or it would be an incredible (and expensive!) waste!


Part of a larger work in progress.  Several old junkers filled with soil with transplants.

Funny.  On the farm I grew up on, we have a graveyard of vehicles (as do most of the neighboring farmers) with some that have been sitting so long, they've got trees growing in them, too.  I never would have thought of them as being art.  Mind you, no one's ripped the seats out and filled them with good soil.  With the wasps nests that get built in some of them, I doubt it would be a good idea to try.

You can see the rest of the photos I took today here.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Passing storm

Anna: It's that time of year again - storm season!  Today, a couple of them passed over us and I managed to get a few photos.  Here's a couple of them.

Storm front

These were the cloud formations looking straight up from our balcony as the storm front made its way over us.  I wasn't able to catch any of the lightning, but there was a lot of it - including one bolt close enough that the thunder of it shook our townhouse.


In between storms, we were treated to a double rainbow.  The inner bow was a full arch.

Then I ducked inside again as the next downpour started.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

How does your garden grow?

Anna:  A few days ago, a group of us met up at a local nursery and picked up plants for our container gardens.  It was a gorgeous day for it, too.


I got to say hello to the resident cat, who was obviously used to large numbers of people, and quite adept at ignoring them.

My fellow gardeners picked up some lovely flowers.  Here are a few of them.





Me, I didn't pick up any flowers at all.  Instead, I picked up edibles.


'cause I'm like that. 

 I'd already planted some seeds in my old containers, but the ones in the rail planters didn't survive the snowfall.  The container with lettuce seeds was showing leaflets too small to be seen in this photo.  One of my new bin planters has something new for me - Strawberry Spinach, which is neither strawberry, nor spinach, but looked neat, so I wanted to give it a try.  I hope my bin is deep enough for them.  I'm not sure how the planting will turn out.  As I was trying to open the seed packet, it slipped out of my hands and landed upside down in a corner of the bin.  I have no idea how many seeds were in there, but they were incredibly tiny and black.  Aside from what was stuck to the sides of the packet, for all I know, I dumbed dozens of seeds in that one spot.  I tried scooping up the soil from the area and adding them to where I intended to plant them, so we'll see how it turns out.

The other new bin was supposed to be just seeded with Purple Haze carrots, but when I saw them available as transplants, I decided to pick up a few.  This gives me a head start with the successive sowing I was planning on.  They even look to have survived having one of my extra bags of soil fall over onto them on the ride home!

My rail planters now have some Sweet Basil - just one plant this year, as I found them too delicate for our windy balcony last year.  Hopefully, it will be well sheltered by the Joi Choi and Silver Posie Thyme it's with.  I also tried some Grand Chives this year - we found the Garlic Chives we had last year too bitter, and they too didn't survive the snows (they had been showing green shoots shortly after things warmed up, but alas, they didn't make it).  I figured it was a good opportunity to try a different variety, together with the Crinkle Leaf Oregano and Sage I picked up.

In other pots, I've still got my tarragon (I managed to wrest control of them and have just one plant of tarragon to supply us) and rosemary, plus some spinach.  I even seeded some lettuce with our avocado indoors some time ago, and they're ready for eating now. 

Since these were transplanted, it's been on the cool side and raining fairly steadily.  The rain is supposed to continue for a couple more days before it creeps up to the hot side again.  I think the plants should be okay.  If not, I can take the more delicate ones indoors.  I'm hoping our rainfall means the end of the 10 + year dought we've been having in our area.