Saturday, May 21, 2022

Gardening and Knitting Notes

Last Saturday my husband and I planted the tomatoes and cucumbers. A generous neighbor was thinning her prolific strawberry bed and offered plants to me. I now have a raised bed planted with starter strawberry plants. I need to cover it to keep out the rabbits and squirrels. I potted petunias and coleus for the front porch. I am a thrifty gardener. I would rather spend my hobby money on yarn, fiber, and good coffee so I stick to basics in the yard. The old-fashioned smaller variety of lavender iris are blooming. They aren't as showy but they have a wonderful fragrance. Iris always remind me of one of my Grandmothers - Gram. She had lots of pretty flowers, including irises, in her yard and was happy for my sister and I to pick bouquets any time. This yellow iris is just beginning to bloom. According to Wikipedia, Iris takes its name from a Greek word meaning rainbow. Iris is also the name for the Greek goddess of the rainbow. As Iris come in a rainbow of colors, the name seems fitting. 

This campanula, next to the chives, is a happy accident. Six or seven years ago, I bought a small pot to use as a centerpiece on a serving table. I stuck it in a corner of my herb garden and it grew and thrived. This year it is so pretty. I stick plastic forks around new plants to keep the critters out. It deters them some but didn't stop someone from getting into the parsley. 

Since I finished the shawl and sweater, I'm enjoying some smaller projects. I knit another slip-stitch dish cloth from Sarah's pattern and am now working on one using the waffle stitch that Kym mentioned. I knit this hat because I wanted to improve my colorwork knitting. It's a nice pattern. When I was a girl, Gram taught me to knit. She taught me the knit and purl stitch and to cast on and bind off. Otherwise I picked up techniques, including colorwork, from books, magazines, and most recently from the internet. My method of catching floats never worked well. Last year I found this 
tutorial on Modern Daily Knitting that was so helpful. Sometimes I get so stuck in my way of doing things that I forget to look for a better way. In this hat pattern, there were only two rows where I needed to catch a float but it was a nice little project. I really enjoyed working with the Juniper Moon Farm Moonshine yarn. I don't know that I'd knit a sweater with it but mittens would be quite warm and soft. 

Finally, look at this basil. Last year, the basil in pots produced well. I hope it does as well in this location again. Here's to the hope that comes with Spring.

Ravelry Links

Laurus Hat

Wash/Dish Cloths



  1. Iris always remind me of my grandmother, too, Jane. She had a lovely collection of iris all around the foundation of her house. (She would've been horrified if I'd picked them, though. . . ) I especially love your yellow bloom! I'm trying my basil in a pot this year, too. Usually, I just grow it in the ground with my other herbs, but last year it failed miserably! I'm hoping for a better outcome in the pot. :-)

  2. Your iris is so beautiful. We always had purple iris in my childhood home.

    Love your little hat too. So cute!

  3. Beautiful Iris. Beautiful Hat. I just buy fresh basil at the grocery store and keep it in a canning jar with water. it keeps for several weeks and I use it up and then buy more. I do keep Rosemary in a pot on my patio and this year (thanks to my neighbor Rob) I am adding a pot of Oregano!

  4. It seems as if iris were grown by lots of grandmothers! My grandmother had many different shades (even a lovely peach one), along with peonies, hydrangeas, and hollyhocks. I'd love to take a walk through her garden again, but memories will have to do. I'm planting tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and cabbage tomorrow (and maybe some forks will go in beside some herbs).

  5. There are some spectacular irises blooming in the neighborhood that I pass on my walks, though I haven't seen any yellow ones like yours -- stunning! I've just put radishes and butternut squash seedlings in the garden, and I'm waiting on the cucumbers to get a little more robust. So far our herbs are doing very well, though I suppose it helps that I started with good plants and we've continued to get rain. It just makes me so happy to see everything growing!

    Thanks for the idea about the forks. Finally, something to do with all the plastic ones we've acquired with takeout orders!

  6. I am a likewise frugal gardener...and I feel that all plants are so beautiful. :) My nana had a bed filled with iris... they were just so gorgeous! I was happy that my sage has come up again this year... one less herb to purchase. I have basil on my list and hope to get to the nursery this week!

  7. our irises are about to bloom! it's been fun seeing what blossoms at this house that is new to us. Also we have a VERY generous neighbor who shares plants with us. I am ever so grateful!! Lovely knitting and I'm happy to be here catching up.

  8. Camellias and magnolias remind me of my grandmother - aren't we fortunate to have those memories! our mint, thyme, and oregano came back ... and I have high hopes for our container of basil, too.

  9. Catching up on blog reading. I love the blue hat and the quilt behind it! Congrats to your graduates too.