Sunday, March 28, 2010

Plants, Chickens and Trees. Oh My!

Spring is an exciting time at any house but especially a first spring in a new house because you get to see everything for the first time.  There is a sense of Christmas with every new corner that is explored.  Can't wait to see what's what when all is said and done.   To make the place our own we ordered 110 trees from the county that will arrive in the middle of April.  The order consists of seedlings and transplants of white pine, douglas fir, river birch and streamco willow.  Looking forward to planting them.
After work today I stopped by our dear friends, Pat and Dick Boese's house.  They have the greenest of thumbs and I wanted to see their setup for starting vegetables, plants and flowers from seed.  Like I mentioned in an earlier post I have loved landscaping and gardening since I was a kid but I have very little experience starting plants from seed.  It takes a great deal of effort, time, patience, knowledge and space.  Well I now have the space and I am gaining the knowledge from Pat and Dick.  They have a really nice set up and start their seeds indoors before moving them into either one of their 2 greenhouses!  They were nice enough to give me a sample of seeds that include heirloom tomatoes, dill, pumpkins, poppies, a wild datura from utah (which I am told contains cyanide!), amongst several others.  Many of these seeds are cultivated from there own plants at the end of each season and they save them to plant the next year.  I used their seedling setup design to build one of my own when I got home.  It is a simple set up that involves fluorescent lights and a seedling bed propagator.  Luckily I had a light in the basement that was not being used and I recycled the old dresser into my seedling station.  And yes, Mom and Dad, it's completely safe.  Fluorescent lights give off virtually no heat and use very little energy-which is also good for the environment!  In the next week I will plant the seeds and get them started!

The tall spiky things are some pussy willow cuttings that they gave me that I will allow to root after which I will plant them in the ground, after Dingus Day of course!  They remind me of Mrs Kozlowski who always had them growing in her yard when I was a kid!

On the left is a cutting of some succulent that I cut from a plant in an office at work.  It looks paltry now but when it actually has leaves it is quite striking with green leaves that have pink veins.  One the right is a cactus that Sarah bought, rather rescued, for $1 last year.  We are suckers for stuff like this!  It wasn't doing all that well after sustaining injuries when it was knocked in the sink by one of the cats, so it has spent the better part of 6 months at the Boese plant hospital under lights.  It has done incredibly well and has gotten a bit top heavy.  Therefore I had to re-pot it today and sink some of the trunk below soil level.  We'll see!  As soon as I am done writing here I will be putting a spider plant under the lights that I rescued from the garbage at work!  Now who would do that?!  Also thanks to Uncle Connie and Aunt Barbara for sharing the "Hens and Chickens" plants with us!  Can't wait to find a home for them.  These too remind me of childhood because they always has these at their house when I was a kid.  We would be honored to keep them growing!

And last but not least we ordered chickens!  They will arrive at the beginning of May as day old chicks.  The order includes the following:

buff cochin

Very exciting!  It will be nice to be partially self sufficient in many ways here and to be somewhat sustainable.  For those of you that want eggs let me know (unless you already get yours from Pat and Dick, or Ed Reiller).  You can't believe the difference in taste!

and a PS: my cousin Keith Kancar, whom many of you know, works with Thomas O'Brien at Aero Interior Design Studio in NYC.  You may also recognize his name from the Target line: Thomas O'Brien's Vintage Modern.  Thomas has a beautiful new book out that showcases his unique interior design style and taste which blends new and old, vintage and modern.  It really is quite stunning!  The book, American Modern, can be purchased here and I highly recommend it!  Congrats to Keith!  He is very much part of the success of Aero and all things Thomas O'Brien! 


Carole said...

I can't wait until Spring is in full bloom at the Farm!!! It was beautiful in autumn and winter.....and I know that spring and summer will be spectacular!!! Don't forget about all the hosta that were at Gram's house, then Bosse, then Chairfactory, then Girard....and now, Grover about passing plants on.

Anonymous said...

I suppose I need a picture if I am going to be a regular...thanks for the shout out Eric! Thomas and I really appreciate the compliments...and are enjoying your blog filled with insights, design, animals, the farm, witty anecdotes etc...especially nice for us voyeurs in NYC..cooped up in apt's and concrete...keep up the good work yourself...xoxo k