Garden Party

Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster

We moved into our starter house at the end of summer 2016. The backyard was a mess so we spent the rest of the year trying to tame and reclaimed it.

We had the garden area cleared and restored in time to put some vegetables in last summer but they didn’t grow very well. The soil was full of pests, tree roots, literal garbage and plastic that the previous owners had buried for some unfathomable reason, and broken glass and pottery. The yard was also shaded by a large walnut tree at the back of our yard and an overgrown birch on the side, breaching the border between our yard and the neighbour’s. We tilled the soil, trying our best to clean it up as we went, and worked in some manure that we got from my father-in-law’s organic farm. The plants that were able to take root and then survive the bugs did well enough to give us a few fresh meals, but certainly didn’t produce enough to give us winter reserves.

Early the next spring, our neighbour, also a new, first-time home owner, had the overgrown birch tree taken down. We dug up many of the tree roots that were sending up suckers and causing trouble, found and removed the rest of the garbage (thanks Pepper), and, over the course of the previous year, had driven away most of the pests using organic methods.

Knowing not to expect too much from our garden, this year we planted a few cheap and easy things with a let’s see what happens attitude. We didn’t get many peas, but the radishes did alright. Then the summer sun started rising over the houses and shining into our north facing yard, through the gaps where the tree used to be, for most of the day and our garden took off! The horseradish, potatoes, tomatoes, beans, zucchini, and various herbs soon took over and started crowding out the weeds. Not even Pepper, the biggest garden pest of all, can trample the strong, bumper crop of plants we’ve been able to grow this year.

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Dress ModCloth
Hat Forever 21
Shoes ModCloth
Necklace Emery & Opal

All photos be me and Matt Harrison.

Fleeting Seasons

We seem to have skipped spring here. We had snow falling right up to the end of April then switched suddenly to 20°C weather with no going back. All the plants have burst into life. It seemed like the magnolia and fruit trees would never get their flowers until they were suddenly there. Then, I think due to the sudden start to summer, they had all fallen away and been replaced with leaves within a week.

I thought I had lots of time to photograph my beautiful crab apple tree in bloom, but the petals all fell away before I got the chance. It feels very representative of the way life has been going since I became one of those very busy adults. The seasons and the weather slip away before I knew they were here.

That’s why, this summer, I’ve got a list and big plans to accomplish everything on it. I’m going to spend time with the people I love at the cottage, and spend as much time as I can swimming, even if my only companion is the dog. I’m going to sit on patios in pretty dresses, drinking radlers, shandies and cocktails. I’m finally going to find a good place for breakfast/brunch in this city that I’ve lived in for nearly a decade. I’m going to put lots of vegetables I’ve never grown before in my garden. I’m going to work hard and spend as much time as possible outside on the weekends. I’m going to say yes to the things that make me nervous and no to the things that make me sad. I’m going to thoroughly enjoy this summer before it slips away!

Top Banana Republic
Skirt ModCloth
Necklace Emery & Opal
Hair Flowers H&M
Earrings very old

All photos by me.