More Garden Junque: Whimisical Wheelbarrows and Yummy Kale and Toasted Walnut Pesto

Peonies and Russian sage blooming in my gardens right now...

Peonies and Russian sage blooming in my gardens right now…

I’m loving my gardens right now… the season’s demands of harvesting all the farms produce hasn’t quite pushed its way in yet-I think the colder weather is holding some things off. Even my roses aren’t blooming like they should! They are loaded with buds… but warm temps is what they, and I prefer!

If you haven’t been over to For Dragonflies And Me Facebook, take a trip over and meander for awhile. I just posted lots of photos of my patio that will give you some fun outdoor decorating ideas along with an album of photo’s of my roses. Be sure to give a Like and Share. Thanks in advance!

So back onto the topic at hand: Garden Junque! What do you do with a leaky, rusty old wheelbarrow? Well, that’s a silly question for a’ vintage junque’ junky! Today we’ll look at some fun and creative ideas on how to use old wheel barrows in our garden spaces! I’ll also include some planting tips to help you get started. Enjoy friends!

One of my four wheel barrows.

One of my four wheel barrows.

Here’s one of my wheel barrows planted with a new mini petunia in the center and double petunia’s along the edge. These will begin to cascade in just a few more weeks. I also placed a small iron bird bath in the back center to help fill in until the flowers are full and over flowing.

Bountiful Harvest

I love this photo… yes it’s more of a fall idea (keep this one tucked away) but the overflowing, beautiful, fresh produce is romantic to this gardener. I can imagine this greeting my guests as they arrive for a bounteous meal served fresh picked and cooked, right here on my farm!

You could use this idea seasonally by using planted pots and items in it instead of directly ‘planting’ in it. In spring use multiple pots of spring blooming bulbs; in summer replace with several potted geraniums; use this veggie idea in the fall or if veggies aren’t for you, imagine mums and bittersweet, that would be beautiful. When the snow flies, switch out for evergreen bows with holly mingled through. Once again, use what you love!

Merry Marigolds

So simple, warm and inviting. You can plant any type of flowers you like, some idea’s would be zinnia’s, teddy bear sunflowers or another dwarf variety, petunias or a combination of several varieties.

Fabulous Firepit

Now this is soooo cool! Like I always say, the creation is only limited to your own imagination. Be creative and do what you like!

Here are a few tips for planting in old wheel barrows:

*Be sure there are several drainage holes. If it has rusted out holes, those will work so long as there are enough to allow for proper drainage. If there are none, simply use a hammer and nail to poke holes in the bottom. You should have at least one hole for every six square inches.

*When you have the wheel barrow in the location you want, fill with a good potting soil. I use Miracle Grow Moisture Control. Fill the wheel barrow, mounding the soil in the center creating a mountain effect. The peak should be about 6 inches above the wheel barrow’s edge, while leaving about 2 inches around the base. The soil will settle.

*Don’t be stingy with the plants, yet don’t over crowd. I recommend placing the plants 6″ to 8″ apart, depending on what you’re using. Plant the center plants in a zig-zag pattern so it will fill in neatly. Water immediately after planting with a fertilizer. I use Neptune’s Harvest Liquid Fish once a month.

It will take about 3-4 weeks for it to fill in, but it will be worth the wait!

Here is a yummy recipe using the kale that should be pouring out of your gardens right now. No need to wait for the basil, here’s a pesto recipe using healthy and yummy Kale! Enjoy friends!

kale

Kale and Toasted Walnut Pesto
Ingredients
•½ cup plain walnuts
•2 medium garlic cloves, chopped
•3 cups kale, chopped
•½ cup grated Parmesan cheese + a couple additional tablespoons for sprinkling on top
•Approx. ⅔ cup extra virgin olive oil
•Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Instructions
1.In a medium sauté pan over medium heat, stir the walnuts until just lightly toasted, about two minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
2.Pulse the garlic in a food processor until finely chopped, then add the kale, walnuts, and Parmesan cheese. Pulse until chopped, turning it off periodically and removing the top to press the kale down toward the blade if necessary.
3.With the food processor running on low, pour the olive oil in in a steady stream until it forms a sauce.
4.Add salt and pepper to taste.

Happy Day,
Jean