Salvaged wood...

Turned into raised beds

While some of the plants are on winter hiatus, we human’s work has only just begun!

Every winter, the garden undergoes a bit of an upheaval or overhaul.  This ‘down’ season is crucial for the overall well- being of the garden.  What improvements or tweakings we do will determine what kind of growing season we have next year (barring the weather, of course)  It’s a season to take stock and make adjustments.

Time for a "hair cut"

Chop Chop!  There’s pruning of the fruit trees, blueberry bushes,  and perennial herbs also get thinned out.  Removing “the Three D’s”  (dead, diseased or damaged) branches help with the overall health of perennial plants. WHY PRUNE? 

Thanks to global weirding, the guys are busy building a cold frame (got some nice wood, cheap wood from the Habitat for Humanity store just down the road from the homestead). We are also doing a bit of reorganizing in the garden.

There is a slew of things on the “to do” list and we are still cleaning up from “one of the worst natural disasters to befall Pasadena in 100 years. ” (See Wild Wind )    Pasadena streets are still lined with downed trees and limbs… ours included.  It’s a massive clean up undertaking from the  destruction of trees.   Sadly, the famous  LA Arboretum received extensive tree damage and is closed indefinitely.     City services are turning all the downed trees into free mulch for Pasadena residents  which is available at one of the Rose Bowl’s parking lot

With a farm, nothing is static.  So, unlike our neighbors with their plain lawns and ordinary ornamentals, our yard has us doing mental gymnastics just to keep up.  One of the major challenges is space – or rather the lack of  space – to keep supplies, dirt, compost piles, and salvaged wood.  We can’t just pile it here or there because  it gets in the way.


Speaking of lack of space… come and get ’em!  The shipment of OLLAS  have arrived.   All sizes are in stock and ready to ship (or to be picked up if you are in the Los Angeles/Pasadena area)

Clay pot irrigation. Studies have show 80% more efficient that drip irrigation

Longtime readers will know that we LOVE saving water and using ollas in the garden (Learn more about using clay pot irrigation in the garden) , not to mention Sis  and I did a bit of shopping – thanks to the packing material the ollas were packed in.

More about our second- hand clothes scores in a later post…

I’m dreaming of spring, what about you?



  1. says:

    Do you find it odd that the cleanup and repair is so slow? We have had winds in the past and cleanup has always been within a day or two tops. Is it because of cutbacks that government is taking forever to get jobs done? They have no problem militarizing police forces though. No lack of funds there.

  2. Heather :) :) :) says:

    Oh, I can’t stop laughing “global weirding”…but it’s so very apropos to the climate these days 🙂 🙂

    I’m stil, devastated to hear about the L.A. Arboretum…My mother and I went there all the time when I was a kid!!

    I know things are slow,but keep going forward and it will eventually get cleaned up 🙂

    Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather 😉

  3. Justin says:

    Wow, clay pot irrigation. Sounds very interesting, I’m going to have to look into that. I’m curious, do you guys use any sea minerals diluted to feed your garden?

  4. Sage Kaplan says:

    Garden looks good and I can’t wait for your next post about your second-hand clothes, I love second-hand, can’t wait to see what you got

  5. Nebraska Dave says:

    Anais, I really don’t want to wish away winter because here in Nebraska snow and cold is a natural order of things. It’s what the land here needs to kill bugs, rest and receive moisture for the next growing season. Warm years, yes there were warm years even before global warming, resulted in tough growing seasons the next year. But, I am definitely looking forward to Spring this year and being able to work on reclaiming the land at Terra Nova Gardens (my garden expansion). So as plans for the garden beds dance through my head, I’ll be sipping on a steaming cup of coffee and watching the snow that will come float down to the ground. When the snow finishes its blanket covering, the sound of scraping snow shovels and roaring snow blowers will ring through the neighborhood air. Then the kids litter the slopes near the school to take advantage of the wonderful snow to fly down the hill with snow broiling up over the top of their heads. Each ride of adrenalin only feeds the excitement for the next ride.

    So here in Nebraska for the next three months, it’s time for planning, reading garden books, browsing seed catalogs, and preparing for bed rejuvenation beginning in March. Have a great Winter garden day.

  6. V Schoenwald says:

    Like Nebraska Dave says, its time for the next season. Nebraska is full of suprises weather-wise so its a high stakes weather poker play.
    I am waining the cold by going through the seed catalogs, going through my stash and planning my small bucket container garden. I do farmer’s market providing fresh herbs and dried herb and spice mixes and new next market, soap. I am excited about the additions I will be doing.
    I can hardly wait for gardening next year. On our next warm spell, I am going to move a few containers to my south side and start setting up make-shift cold frames over my buckets for greens and lettuces I start in February.
    I will start setting up growing/seeding areas in a spare room for my herbs. So I got to drag out the lights and trays and I set up a resin shelf unit for my light and seed tray system.
    I also wish you, Anais, and your family a wonderful, blessed Christmas Holiday season. I pray for abundance, and fair weather your way.

  7. martin johnstone, outer hebrides says:

    nice pictures. Whilst i wouldn’t wish such damaging winds on anyone, things often don’t turn out as anyone expects. How we cope with those changes is so important. I’m glad the damaged trees are being put to good use. I hope that the people affected also take something from the situation.
    Happy Christmas to all you on the other side of the ‘pond’.

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