Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Maple Hill Hop 127

Maple Hill Hop

Welcome to 
The Maple Hill Hop.
This is a hop for folks who love the outdoors.
Feel free to post about anything that's going on
in your neck of the woods,
no matter the season.
(Please share only outdoor posts.)
*Grab the button above to link back to Maple Hill 101.*

Sunday was a beautiful day to be out in the garden.
I headed over to Faye & Lynn's at the usual time,
looking forward to whatever they had waiting for me.
There's always something fun in store on The Hill!

This glorious azalea is on one side of their driveway.
It's a stunner!
There are so many amazing blooms on their 10-acre property,
many of which are rare and hard-to-acquire.

Today's task involved transplanting these basil seedlings to bigger pots.
Some were getting a bit leggy,
and the extra room for the roots to spread out would be well appreciated.
Basil has been a bit finicky.
The last couple of times it's been started from seed,
the wee babies would be fine,
and then once they got a bit taller, they just didn't make it.
It was good to see that quite a few of these made it to this size.
We are cautiously optimistic.   

Here are the tools of the trade.
A pointed trowel helps dig a precise hole,
the stainless steel nails keep the pot covers in place
and the scissors are used to trim off any dead leaves.

Faye filled the larger pots with Lynn's soil mix,
so they were ready to go.
(We showed you how we recycled the soil last week.)
The nail is placed in the center of the hole,
so that plants can be properly aligned.

You can see it better here.
This serves as a guide so that we know where to start digging.

Depending on the size of the transplant,
a well is dug all the way around the nail.

The transplants are gently removed from their cell packs for insertion.
Look at the healthy root system!

We place transplants just a bit higher than they were in the cell packs.

Then the dirt that had been removed is added back,
and the plant is "tucked in", with a wee bit of pressure
to make sure the roots have good contact with the soil.

Eh, voila!
Ready to spread out and grow!
You may notice the two nails on either side of the cover.
They secure the covers, as there is often a breeze here.
Lynn's 7,000 square-foot garden is all containerized.
He's made every cover that is used to 
ensure plants stay clean and keep weeds at bay.

These bays allow for rain and sun to reach the plants,
but if harsh conditions arise,
the shade cloth on the top of the frame
can be lowered on each side to protect the delicate seedlings.
Hopefully, we're on our way to a bumper crop!

I just had to photograph these sweet lil' measuring cups.
They had belonged to Faye's mom,
and she remembers her mom using them often for baking.
I just love the vintage stuff!

By one o'clock, I was heading home,
secure in the knowledge that a good morning's work was done.
It's always a treat to spend the weekend with these two very kind and generous souls,
and not always easy to bid them farewell.
I can't think of a better place to be on a spring day!

What's been going on where you are?
Let's HOP!



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