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Growing Like a Champ

October 25th, 2011

Remember when I talked about the plants I purchased on my trip to Monticello? One of the plants was a small variegated citrus.

I potted it up after we got home and it lived by the window in the living room all winter long. Late this spring I put it outside, along with many other potted plants. It spent it’s days on the back deck soaking up the sun and the rain.

It hadn’t grown a ton over the winter, but I hadn’t really expected it to. I figured this summer it would take off, and I was right. I’m just about to carry it back inside and thought I’d take another photo to compare just how much it had grown over the summer.

This little tree is about three times the size it was in the spring when I put it out. I made sure to fertilize it on Valentine’s Day, Memorial Day, and Labor Day as the Lemon Ladies Orchard recommended to me when they heard I had a few citrus trees in pots. I’m wondering if this little tree will bloom this coming year? I certainly hope so. I would love nothing more than to be able to harvest a few lemons from it. Or limes from my dwarf lime tree. After all, if I have houseplants, they might was well provide some food too!

Do you have any houseplants that are edible? Any tiny citrus trees in pots?

Quote of the Day: Albert Comus

October 12th, 2009

“Autumn is a second spring, where every leaf is a flower.”
-Albert Camus

Yellow_Maple_Tree
Fall_Leaves
I think peak leaves will happen this week here in NE Ohio, too bad they’re calling for gloomy, rainy, snowy weather. I love the changing of the leaves because it helps make this season a little more bearble. It’s tough because you know soon enough all life will be dormant and everything will be brown. But the explosion of colors really helps brighten my mood!

What do you enjoy most about the changing seasons (or do you have them where you live)?

I Had No Idea

April 4th, 2009

Can anyone guess what kind of tree this bloom belongs to?
blooming-maple
I had no idea that maple trees bloomed until I decided to keep bees and started researching nectar sources for the bees in early spring. I must say, I think maples may be my new favorite tree. They give us shade, syrup, these beautiful flowers, and beautiful fall colors.

What’s your favorite tree?

Conifers in the Garden

March 25th, 2009

If you remember a few weeks ago I talked about wanting to add more coniferous plants to the gardens here at Chiot’s Run. Ironically, while I was out working the other day I noticed a small volunteer pine tree that sprouted up in the side yard.
volunteer-pine-tree
I’m not sure what kind it is, but it sure is cute. It’s only about 4 inches tall. I’m going to dig it up and put it in a pot to help it establish. Later this summer I’m going to plant it in the gardens somewhere. I have all kinds of volunteers in my gardens, usually they’re petunias and butterfly bushes, but I’ve never had a pine tree. You sure can’t beat a free tree!

Have you ever had this happen? What kind of volunteers spring up in your gardens?

Maple Sugaring at Chiot’s Run

March 13th, 2009

Yesterday Mr Chiots and I tapped 12 of our maple trees here at Chiot’s Run. I have always wanted to do it but I thought you could only tap sugar maples, but Saturday I found out this was not the case.
maple-spile-dripping-sap
I ran to Lehman’s Hardware in Kidron, OH and bought some spiles to tap our trees. Then we spent a half hour tapping our maple trees yesterday.
maple-sugaring
One tree started running sap as soon as we tapped it, it was very exciting. We hung the jar under it and it produced almost a pint of sap in 2 hours before it got cold.
maple-spile-in-tree
It’s a bit late in the year for us to be tapping, the season started a few weeks ago, but we still have a week or two of sap weather coming. We won’t get much syrup since it takes 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup. If I get enough for one pancake breakfast I’ll be happy.
maple-sugaring-in-glass-jars
This is such a great way to learn new things. I would never just sit down and learn about maple trees, but we had a great time looking in our tree book and finding out how to identify maple trees in the winter by their bark. It’s a good thing I already knew which trees on our property were maples, since identifying trees in the winter without being able to see the buds is a bit of a challenge. We learned a lot and we’re looking forward to the sweet reward!

Anyone else tapping their maple trees? Do you buy local maple syrup?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but just recently moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine.

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