Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Does your cat know how to garden?

This might sound really silly to some of you (like anyone reads this, anyway, I am amusing myself by writing 'you'), but my cat, Boo Boo Kitty loves to garden. She really LOVES to garden! It's one of her "jobs" as she is a working cat. 'Munkin is her other favorite job (our name for chipmunk hunting, as our chippies destroy the garden and forested areas with burrows).

You can see a photo of Boo in the herb garden to your right. She tries to garden the herb garden from other creatures, especially other cats peeing in it. Nobody likes peed on food, after all!!

So Boo is my companion as I surf the net for seeds, and upload photos of our garden which she always recognizes. As I do my seed organizing she waits patiently or kicks Miss Kitty's butt when Miss Kitty steals seed packets in glee of being a "naughty kitty". Boo will sit by me so patiently as I seed out the flats and containers for winter sowing, then she will tend them, lovelying as they sit out, waiting to germinate. I am not kidding when I say that that darned cat keeps track of EVERYTHING! She watches containers for germination, she KNOWS when they need a little extra water, and forbid if you move anything. She will walk back and forth amongst the containers figuring out what was moved and where it is now. It's astounding to see.

We are a pretty good team, my garden cat and I. Yesterday we spent several hours getting the first winter sowing containers ready for their exposure to the elements. And wouldn't ya know, it was quite cold last night! Stratification, here we come! I also worked on the first parts of the vegetable gardening and seeding class I will be teaching in March. It's two parts, and more intense than any other class I've taught. There's a class coming up at the end of January first though which is using recyclables in the garden. I love teaching people how easy and simple gardening should be. That love and patience are as much a part of the garden as plants are, and that money can't buy what time can do.

Monday, January 1, 2007

How about a little vintage pot?

Not only do I garden out of doors in the Electric Garden, but I also like to garden indoors at Ward 81, with houseplants planted in vintage pottery. Old Pot sort of goes hand and hand with the entire theme of the Electric Garden and Ward 81. If you'd click the links, you should get the connection!

One of the houseplants I enjoy the most are christmas cactus. I started to grow many epiphytic cactus in general, but because they came from small cuttings, I haven't seen any flowers from them yet. Well, that's the reason I'd like to think I haven't seen any flowers from them. I received a trade of some eucarist lily a few years ago and I have never seen any blooms from those either. I tend to sort of ignore house plants. Water and occassionally misting, one or two fertilizations a year and maybe a dust and polish if they are lucky is all the attention they get. That is mainly why I like very simple and easy to grow house plants.

I started gathering the pottery several years ago. At first I mainly looked out for late 60's plastic planters like those from Ingrid. Then I began to notice older pottery at thrift stores. It all started innocently enough, but as my love of house plants grew, so did the need for more planters. I discovered McCoy was a "thing" when I bought a plant for .25 cents from a plant sale at a local Washington DC ladies plant club. It came with a planter (it still has the same plant in it, 13 years later!!). Then at the Cathedral thrift store in DC, I scored a very large McCoy yellow bamboo planter for $7. That opened the floodgates!

Now I obssessively gather vintage pottery bits and pieces. Mainly yellow, some types of green and cream/white. The tiny pots are great for rooting plants. They still look good when they are teensy, and of course the large planters and pots are really hard to find, which kind of stinks, since plants grow.