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Posts by MonarchMom

I use hand cream AND gloves! Otherwise the dirt dries out my skin and nails. I like to rub a thick cream into my finger tips and nails and then put on the nitril gloves. I work in an office and can't be showing up with dirt under my nails. Planting tiny seeds, or transplanting might be an exception... But 90% of gardening is in the soil with gloves.
Also a big fan.  Yes, some plot lines are far-fetched.... but they make up for it with the interesting characters and great writing.  I find the "downstairs" stories a bit more interesting the the "upstairs" stories.     But why did Lady Mary become so boring the minute she got married????   She was such a spit-fire when single - never doing what was expected and holding out for true love.  Now she just seems all about the estate.
Hi, I've painted my whole life and did so while a young Mom with a day job. For me it worked best during that time to have a drafting table and bookcase in the corner of our family room/ dining room. My kids could be at the table doing homework or a puzzle, etc. while I worked away in my corner. I kept most of my supplies on the bookcase. I did a lot of drawing and watercolor since it would not generate fumes, and you could start and stop without a lot of clean up. ...
Anyone else gardening along the shore? I have mostly sand here at the Jersey Shore, augmented with compost and mulch. Growing anything beside tomatoes is a challenge. I've tried growing in pots, with some success with tender herbs and peppers. Anyone else with these conditions?
We take our compost seriously around here too.  I've been known to take a "to go" bag home from friends and family to add to our compost.  And I've been saving a separate stash of egg shells for a few months now, I crush them and add to the soil when I plant my tomatoes for extra calcium.  Crushed shells used as a mulch will also deter slugs.
Have you read "Never Let Me Go" by Ishiguro?  Really enjoyed that book.  It has also been made into a movie, but I don't think it held a candle to the novel.  I won't go into the story line, since the way it unfolds with the narrator and the reader both making discoveries at the same time is one of its charms.   
Snow peas are easy for kids to do since the seeds are large (they are dried peas) so planting goes quickly.  And they are pretty vines and flowers, and can be eaten right in the garden!    
OrangeMoon - that may not be roots on the strawberries.  They also put our "runners" which are long stems coming from the center of the "mother" plant, which is called the crown.  They grow 6-12" out, then where they touch the dirt they form new roots and leaves to become a "daughter" plant, or offset.   You should only plant them at the same depth they were when purchased.  The crown where all the leaves come from should sit on the soil and not be covered...
I do the sunken-pot trick with any creeping herb or grass.    I have some gorgeous lyme-grass clumps sunk into 5 gallon containers I picked up at the recycle center.  Left on it's own it spreads though underground runners and takes over the yard - especially in sandy soil like I have here at the beach.  But sunk into pots it formed a beautiful round clump for an accent planting.  You can just see the rim of the pot in the photo.     I also use this technique...
RE: beans vs peas - I've always planted snow peas (edible pod type) as early as the ground thawed.  They can take cold weather, and they stop producing as soon as the heat arrives.       Beans  - runner or pole - need the soil to be at least 60° to germinate, from what I have read.  So I usually wait till late April/May to plant those.   My radishes are up with 2 sets of leaves!  Now I plant the more rows every few weeks so I can harvest over...
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