Today we are celebrating the 6th AnnualAuthors in Bloom 10 Days of Daily Giveaways Blog Hop.
Here on Vision and Verse you will see some photos of my garden, hints, a garden recipe or two, and my giveaway instructions.
I love my garden. I love to putsy around in the dirt. To the left, my peonies by the waterfalls fell down after a good spring rain. That's okay, they'll perk up again!
I love that lush greenness of springtime.
I have a very special recipe for you. It was my father's "dirt recipe." His flowers were always gorgeous and full of blooms. He used it in his vegetable and flower beds and in his container gardens. If you want to use it in your beds, window boxes, or pots too big to move, it's convenient to mix it in a wheelbarrow, so you can move it around to where you need it. For my deck, I mix it in a large plastic storage container with a lid.
Dad's Dirt Recipe
Vermiculite or Perlite
Mix as much or as little as you think you'll need. Now, you MUST mix it with your hands. If you are a fussy girlie-girl type, wear gardening gloves. Thoroughly combine the mixture. It is a good idea not to breathe in when you add the spaghnum moss.
I make it in big batches, put a lid on it, and keep it on the deck. It's good for houseplants, too. The combination makes a lightweight planting medium that allows rapid root growth and good drainage.
Now, I live in a woodsy, county area and deer and other woodland creatures do find their way into my beautiful gardens. They can be very destructive This recipe will keep them from devouring your beautiful blooms.
This recipe is not my father's. This one comes from a book called Jerry Baker's Terrific Garden Tonics! Jerry has 345 gardening formulas for just about any gardening problem you can think of. It is available at jerrybaker.com.
All-Purpose Varmint Repellent
1/2 cup Murphy's Oil Soap
1/2 cup lemon-scented dishwashing liquid
1/2 cup castor oil
1/2 cup lemon-scented ammonia
1/2 cup hot pepper sauce (like Frank's)
Mix in a 20-gallon hose-end sprayer. Spray to the point of run off. If you apply once a week for a month, the woodland creatures will cross you off their list of favorite dining spots.
Wear gloves. Mix it outside. You may have to reapply after several days of hard rain.
Sometimes aphids and other little bugs will attack your plants. I know they're disgusting, but they are easy to get rid off if you do it early in the infestation.
How? Soapy water. Water the plant with soapy water. Add a few drops of dishwashing liquid to a watering can and wash away the problem. Do it as soon as you notice the problem, because the insects weaken the plant.
Container gardens are lovely additions to benches and walkways. The key is to group plants together that have the same watering and light needs. Shade plants together, Sun plants together. Plants like petunias need much watering and need it often, in hot spells every night.
I am giving away copy of my romantic adventure novel, BLUE LAKE. It's the first story in the Time After Time series, that follows a pair of lovers through their many lifetimes together. All you need to do to be eligible to win is comment below!! If I get a lot of comments, I give away more.
I love planting lavender in window boxes. even the slightest breeze will send the wonderful aroma of lavender into your open windows. At the end of the growing season, just plant in the ground. They are perennials and will be ready to go back in your window boxes next spring.
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Winners will be posted on both the first (Dianne Venetta) and last (BloominThyme) websites. Remember, I will be hosting a Facebook Party, including more garden tips, recipes, fun facts, etc. at facebook.com/DianneVenetta. Feel free to join in, or host one of your own! If you do decide to host a FB or Twitter party for the event, please let me know and I will pass the information along to the other participating authors.