Welcome to Gardeners Roll Call, 2.0–What I did to Bee Better! These post are for you to share with us, what you did to bee better. Oh, there are lots of ways–mulch, seed starting, collecting seeds, planting, providing beed for the birds, adding a beneficial bug box, etc.
To start the efforts of what we did in the Bee Better Teaching Garden, here we go:
The Bee Better forums begin Saturday, March 3rd. This is our second year having forums in the Bee Better Teaching Garden. If you want to learn more about the Bee Better Forum, click HERE!
Finished laying composted leaf mulch from the City of Raleigh. The gardens need about 15 cu. yards, we use Jack with Area Mulch to deliver. He always gives more than you ask for. It looks like I got about 20 cu. yds. this year. To much mulch can either be good thing or bad. But Bee Better gardeners will find a way to use all they are given. I ended up storing a new 15 gallon nursery pots for later use.
I may need those containers of mulch sooner than later. While all the mulch has been placed in piles around the beds, not all of it has been spread. I’ll have to admit, this year was hard for me. But then again, that is a lot of mulch.
Before I ordered the mulch, I asked my husband, David, it he would work with me on taking up space in the driveway. In years past, I would have 20 cu. yds. dumped and it would be gone within 20 yours, thus by Sunday night it was cleared. I knew I didn’t have the energy to do that much so quickly this year. You would think my muscles would be stronger from working everyday at Fearrington Village, but maybe I’ve got to balance that strength with exhaustion haha!
Anyhoo, next year, I will see about betting a helper. It’s time. The job is big. I need help. ‘Nuff said. At least I’m not too proud to admit this, right?
Gardeners take pride in being able to do everything themselves. Oh, I could name a few gardeners who will tell me that when I knew otherwise. There is no shame in getting help. I’ve never called out these gardeners for their white lies. What’s the point. I guess it’s like a golfer shaving points. At least there is no betting going in the garden.
As I was spreading mulch in the Bee Better Teaching Garden, I saw animal control pull up. I said, Are you hear about the duck? No, she said. Do you keep chickens? Yes, I said. She then told me someone called to say I keep dozens of chickens and I let them free range, and there are dead chickens in their yard. At this I laughed and said we have two chickens. I let them out when I’m around, but otherwise, they have a chicken run. She said, sorry to bother you and left. I like it when my neighbor cries wolf. It only makes me look better.
If she called on the duck, Jamie, I’m OK with that. She is loud, but I don’t have the heart to call. In the meantime, she can hang with me and the girls as long as she likes.
BEE BETTER VOLUNTEERING AND FUNDRAISING
Do you believe when stars align? If I didn’t before, I do now!
The Raleigh Garden Club held a fundraiser for Bee Better this week at Cheers & Paint in Cary. I loved the concept. It was super laid back, and we got to make either a painting of a butterfly or a dragonfly. I choose the butterfly, b/c I cannot paint or draw, so I choose what I thought would be easier; and indeed it was.
You can buy my painting for 1M$. Of course it’s not that good, but I wouldn’t part with it for any amount. Such a nice reminder of my friends of the Raleigh Garden Club.
So where do the stars come in? I knew the money would be earmarked for the Bee Better Demonstration Garden at the NC State Fair. This is our third year at the fair, with our theme native bees and the European honey bee. I got star struck when I thought of my son’s Eagle Scout project and his friends that are coming along next to do their projects. And they were looking for a project to do.
I approached the leader, Mr. Aycock about the idea. It is two-fold. 1) a bluebird trail at Our Lady of Lourdes around their soccer field and 2) building 12-14 inch hexagon shared boxes so the Bee Better volunteers, including me, can fill with materials for the beneficial bugs.
If the project is approved, the scout and his team will make 25 of these boxes so they can be arranged into a honeycomb for the fair, and sold afterwards to help further fund Bee Better. I hope I’m not jinxing this by mentioning it; and please send me go juju that it will be approved!!!
Since I knew I would shut in on Sunday due to the rain, I made sure the feeders from my favorite seating areas were full.
The water flow is still too much for the French drains to handle during a gullywasher. I found Charles Holland, (919) 542-4544,3729 Pea Ridge Road, New Hill NC 27562. If you are looking for cedar for any application, give this guy a call!
Anyhoo, I picked up six, 10 foot posts from Charles to lay behind the back boxwood hedge. They aren’t noticeable unless you look over the hedge, but they should seriously slow down water during a heavy rain. These posts may make the Xeric zone a transitional as it holds more water, but I don’t believe it will hamper the other zones in the garden. We shall see.
In the Raleigh area, bluebirds will soon be looking for next sites. Have you put up any bluebird houses? A favorite food of bluebirds are mealworms, but they are pricy, right? Did you know it is easy to farm your own? Farming Mealworms.
I’m still waiting for the cedar waxwings to come for the weeping youpon holly. Normally they arrive in mid-fall. The tree is full of berries waiting for their return. They will sweep in like marauding hordes and leave once the tree is bear of the very last berry.
Next week I’ll share with you a how-to make this bird bubblier!
Please share with me what you have been doing in the garden last week to BEE BETTER!