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The Salsa Rain Barrel System makes it easy to collect up to 58 gallons of water for your garden and lawn. Our rain barrel is ma... Read more »
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Spring brings in the most wonderful colors and here is a fun way to add a touch of color to your gifts! Read more »
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Available online and at your local retailer May 2014 Add distinctive style to craft projects of all kinds with... Read more »
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This year, it seems like spring is way overdue at our house. Read more »
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I always look forward to school being out for the summer (more so than my children, probably!) and the change of pace means we... Read more »
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Here is a fun craft for St. Patrick’s Day that is not only adorable, it makes kids stop and think about how lucky they are. Read more »
Children love our Blunt-tip Kids Scissors for the handle that’s shiny, bright and smooth, not “sticky” or “bumpy.” Teachers and... Read more »
Our Big Kids Scissors take the basic design of our teacher-recommended Kids Scissors and enlarge them for kids that are a littl... Read more »
Our Student Scissors are larger than our Kids Scissors but smaller than adult scissors, perfect for those older children who ar... Read more »
Introduced to the world as a quality fabric scissors, the Original Orange-Handled Scissors redefined the standard for cutting p... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear® Super Pruner/Lopper, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented gear... Read more »
Our Comfort Loop Rotary Cutter with a 45 mm blade makes cutting a wide variety of quilting materials comfortable and easy. A cu... Read more »
No, not bills, although they also appear, but seed catalogs. Like additional Christmas presents, they start showing up about a week before the big holiday, and then for weeks afterward. By the end of January, I usually have a large stack of catalogs waiting for me beside my favorite chair. Seeds for vegetable gardening and beautiful flowers entice me, but I make myself lay them aside until I can really look and choose what I want to grow.
Those companies which aren’t completely paperless, have expanded their catalogs so they are now magazine-like in nature. All those pretty pictures, and once I look between the covers, all those choices. From their pages, they call, “Select me. No, no, choose me!”
Once I put away the Christmas lights, I feel I can give them the attention they deserve. In my garden, I grow both flowers and vegetables. In fact, I have a potager (kitchen garden) just outside my kitchen door where I plant cool crops first and later, summer veggies and herbs.
First thoughts run something like this:
I grab myself a mug of piping hot cider or tea, a pad of paper and a pen, my garden journal, and with great anticipation I begin. The garden journal is for reference, showing the successes and failures of the previous year. What will I grow? The possibilities seem endless, but I manage to narrow things down a bit. I know I’ll grow lettuce and spinach, but even then, there are so many varieties from which to choose. A lettuce “must have” is Black-seeded Simpson for its gorgeous spring green color and reliability. Bloomsdale Long-standing spinach is a good one for my garden. I’ve tried others which never produced and bolted far too quickly in early heat. Yes, definitely those two.
However, I turn the page, and I see an entire section of “Other Greens.” A photograph of beautiful red orach lights up the page with color, and I want it. Because I’ve never tried it before, I pick a mix of greens which contains orach. That way, if I don’t like it, I won’t have four rows of it growing in the potager, a hasty mistake I’ve made before.
I take a sip of tea, focus and line out my choices. At the top of the pad, in my own shorthand, I write the name of the seed company, type of seed, page # and price. Then, I move onto the second catalog and the third. I check my journal to see if a particular seed did well, and if so, did my family like it? Which flowers did I enjoy the most? Which fell over in the wind? Which were the prettiest and so it goes.
In what seems only a moment or two, I realize my drink has grown cold, and over an hour has passed. Oh, but what an hour. I’ve now gone through only a few catalogs, and I have a list a mile long. I’ll spend another cold winter’s night trimming it, but soon, my strategic plan is certain, and packets of seed are on their way.
Now, if only spring will quickly come. I’ve got planting to do.