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April 09, 2018

A Blessed February to everyone.

(Robin picture from Friday evening, Cardinal picture from Wednesday.)

At least that is what it looks and feels like.

Temperatures are a good 20-25 degrees (10/13 c.) below normal for this time of year.

We keep seeing this white stuff
on the ground as well.

Not totally rare for this time of year, however.

I'm way behind on outdoor tasks.

Karen has a lengthy honey-do list, but that isn't top on my list (never is).

On the plus side ........

I have been in the early stages of glaucoma for several years now.

I have my eyes checked every 4-6 months, for eye pressure and to keep an eye on damage (early stages).

I take two different eye drops to help with pressure.

My eye pressure was 18 in both eyes.

Not great, but no further damage found.

With that ..................

I'm Ready For Spring!

I neglected to remind you to make sure you clean give feeders and water sources a good cleaning.

I find thew first of the month is an easy time to remember such tasks.

Even in inclimate weather, I can still spray feeders with rubbing alcohol to kill off germs and bacteria.

Are you using, or saving your banana peels and egg shells.

Veteran readers and gardeners know why, but here we go just in case.

Here is why.

Bananas are rich in potassium and healthy strong plants require a good source of this mineral.

Potassium builds strong, healthy roots, aids in a plants health for fighting off sickness.

Strong roots help provide healthy fruits.

(It's not often I get an chance to take a still photo of a Junco. This male was perched in a shrub just asking me to tale a picture.)

Eggshells are virtually 100% pure calcium.

Nature's most purest form of absorbable calcium (yes, you can take it as a supplement as well).

Again, a vital element for gardens.

Especially your tomatoes plants.

Like you and me, tomato plants require calcium to grow healthy and strong ..... to bear fruit.

Again, like you and me. If we don't consume enough calcium to keep our bones strong, our body will begin to absorb calcium from our bones.

Making for weak and brittle bones.

If your tomatoes aren't getting enough calcium and water, for survival of the plant itself, it will draw elements from the fruits (green tomatoes).

This is how your tomatoes end up with blossom end rot.

It may start with a lack of water.

It may be you water enough, but simply lack calcium.

I grow tomatoes in pots, they get water, but nutrients leach out rather quickly.

A good organic fertilizer like 'Espoma's Tomato Tone', lots of garbage, and crushed eggshells to feed the pots all growing season.

It has been this kind of week, lazy and sleepy.

(Akita Taking a Nap.)

Crushing eggshells isn't science, but a few tips may assist you along the way.

Wash or rinse raw egg residue from the shells.

Microwave for a minute for one to two eggs, two minutes for more than two.

Nuking kills off any bacteria, and dries the shells so they are nice and brittle.

Easy for crushing, or grinding into a powder.

As you plant, sprinkle generous amounts of crushed shells.

Crushed shells are also a wonderful source of grit and calcium for your backyard birds and chickens.

Egg laying birds require more calcium.

Crushed shells may also deter slugs from eating your prized flowers.

So much of our vegetable garbage can, and should be used as compost and fertilizers for vegetable gardens and flower beds.

Potato peels, rich in Phosphorus.

Once composted has multiple uses.

Throwing skins on the gardens and under plants will work, but may have that rotten potato smell, and attract unwanted guests.

Citrus, peels and old fruits work with plants that require amounts of acid.

Rhododendron, Conifers, Hydrangea, etc.

The acid from decaying citrus works wonders, My Hydrangeas did require any commercial supplements, just citrus products from around here.

You can even make tea out of these products for direct watering.

Soak eggshells, banana, citrus, other products.

Soak over night then water your plants.

By doing so, we cut down on landfills,

Enrich our garden soil.

Aid in the circle of life.

Feel good about yourself.

Nature has been doing this since the beginning of time.

God set things in motion.

(Snickers grabbing that last bit of sunshine.

As I said, it has been one of those kind of weeks.)

Some people and industry have messed things up for the rest of us.

Natural laws are constant, however.

By you and me helping, possibilities are endless.

Well, it is time to fly for now.

Before I go, here is your positive quote for the week.

God Bless.

“If you have made mistakes...there is always another chance for may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call "failure" is not the falling down, but the staying down.”

Mary Pickford(1893 - 1979)

Life is full of choices.

Which will you choose?

"The righteous may fall seven times but still get up, but the wicked will stumble into trouble".

Proverbs 24:16

"Treat the earth well:

It was not given to you by your parents,

It was loaned to you by your children.

We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors,

We borrow it from our Children."

Ancient Indian Proverb.

A Blessed week to you .

Your friend indeed,

Ron Patterson

PS. If you enjoy these letters, please forward them to friends, family and co-workers.

Better yet, have them sign up so they can receive their own letters.

Gardening For Wildlife.

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