January 22 – Draft plan for spring planting and groom indoor plants

Oh I love to think about my garden. My plans are often far more ambitious than time, space and budget will allow, however. I am definitely going to grow some hyacinth beans this year, and I planted a bunch of bulbs in the fall (I can’t even remember what I planted, I think tulips). Clearly, outlining a plan that is not just in my head would be a smart thing. I don’t have time to give this the attention it deserves today but I’m going to do this soon.

As for grooming the indoor plants – I watered them and cut off the dead leaves. We used to have many more houseplants but that was before our dog discovered that it was great fun to pull them onto the floor and shake the dirt out. Now our plants hang, or are on shelves he can’t reach. Unfortunately the ones on the shelves are also not really getting enough light. I wonder if Martha has any advice for this particular situation?

January 23 – Order seeds

I haven’t decided if I’ll order any seeds this year. I used to start lots of plants from seed, but I had trouble transplanting them successfully, and they took up a ton of space. I even set up a table and a grow light in the basement (safe from the dog, see above). But let’s face it, it’s not fun to garden in a basement, and given my success rate with the seedlings I don’t think it’s worth it. So I tend to buy my plants at the Farmers’ Market. I will probably order the hyacinth beans though, and perhaps morning glory and climbing nasturtiums. All of those should be easy seeds to deal with.

January 24 – Buy more pet treats

This is an odd note to have on a calendar. It makes me wonder about Martha’s dog treats. Are they very special? Hard to buy so you have to plan ahead? Or will this task appear once a quarter, based on dog-treat-giving data gathered by Martha? We buy our dog treats at Trader Joe’s. I’m pretty sure humans could eat the peanut butter ones although we haven’t tried. The ingredients all sound pretty normal.

January 25 – Spray plants in greenhouse with insecticidal soap as needed

We don’t have a greenhouse, and given that it was only three days ago that I made the rounds with the house plants I decided to largely ignore this task.

January 26 – Clean equipment shed

Well, we could clean the garage…. But we would never embark on a task as large as this on a week day. I am beginning to realize that these tasks are not taking a full time traditional schedule into account. Not that I have a truly traditional schedule, but I’m pretty sure that my clients do expect me to be working on client related activity during the workday.

But we really do need to clean the garage. And the basement. And the crawl space above the garage.

January 27 – Restock firewood pile on porch

I decided to collect fallen sticks from our backyard instead, and pile them in the firepit. The dog was ecstatic by this turn of events and spent a lot of time grabbing sticks and running wildly around the house, waving the sticks in the air.

January 28 – Horseback ride

This morning I decided to skip the gym and my husband and I drove to the Palace Diner in Biddeford for an indulgent breakfast. We had to wait for seats – and were offered cups of coffee to take on a walk as we explored Biddeford. It was a little chilly, and we weren’t really dressed for a walk around town because we were dressed to sit indoors and eat — so after a walk around the block we returned to our car, coffee in hand. It was well worth the wait and I don’t feel at all guilty about the turn of events. Not even looking at the task “horseback ride” makes me regret the decision to have an egg sandwich with bacon, jalapenos and cheddar.

This week’s tip from Martha: Garden Design 101 

Let’s just say my garden doesn’t look like any of those pictures.