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It's become clear to me through posts and PMs that there are some gardeners here just waiting for the chance to discuss gardening!

So, I was thinking... how do you use gardening, or how does it affect you if you need a break, need some respite, need to relax, need inspiration....how do you use it as a therapy tool in caregiving?

What are your activities: Do you go out and pull weeds, read a magazine, design new beds? Look through garden catalogues? Go to garden stores?
And what interests have you added to your gardening? Visit estate or garden displays? Do you go to garden shows?

Does anyone design and plant Knot Gardens? Raised bed planters? Assistive gardens? Pollinator gardens (and have you thought of ways to help the bees and butterflies?)

Are your gardens primarily for pleasure or food, or a mix of both? Do you grow plants for medicinal purposes? Which ones, how do you harvest and process them? Any suggestions?

Do you grow plants that can be used in crafts, such as grapevines for wreaths and lavender for lavender wands? Do you make herbal products such as creams, lotions, chapstick?

What else can you share about gardening and the means in which it nurtures your soul?

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I need to buy some soil too, cw.

I just bought new clay pots at the garden center for my porch and patio. Now I need to purchase the soil and plants!
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I just pulled my summer bulbs (cannas, dahlias and glads) out of storage and the poor things are in an advanced state of growth. I'm going to put them out in my garden shed to try and hold them back until I can pot them up, garden centres aren't even open yet and I'll need new soil to do that.
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Helps me in a few ways, making something live and grow is so satisfying, also i grow legal cannabis, so that helps my anxiety too.
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My dormant orchid has started blooming again. Yay!
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Bounce,

I buy a lot of Bob’s Red Mill products. Love their oatmeal, polenta and cream of wheat.
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Bounce,

Sounds delicious, plus it was a fun activity for your family to share together. I guess seeds have protein like nuts do. I love poppy seeds in muffins. I get those at the coffee shop sometimes.

My neighbor buys bird seed for the birds. He builds beautiful bird houses. He has a beautiful garden.

My grandma made homemade ice cream that was the best! Sometimes she made peach or strawberry ice cream too. She mostly made vanilla.

We loved doing that. Grandma had a fig tree in her backyard. She made preserves for us. The neighbor had a pecan tree and they swapped the figs for pecans. Grandpa made pralines with the pecans.

Fond childhood memories.
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Pepitas are shelled, just like sunflower seeds are shelled. I think eating the shells is like chewing on flavoured particle board, but you for sure do get lots of fiber 🤣
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CW,

I buy the seeds but I think it would be a special treat as a kid if mom is doing it!

Bounce,

Buy some pumpkin seeds to enjoy even though they won’t be the same vibe as eating them the same way that your mom did them.

My mom, grandmother and aunt picked crabs to make stuffed crabs. They were amazing! Our moms had a lot of patience, didn’t they?

Pumpkin patches are fun to see this time of year. I still watch the Charlie Brown Halloween special on television every year like I did as a kid. The Christmas one too.
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IMO peeling pumpkin seeds is tedious and totally not worth it, especially when you can go to the store and buy ready to eat pepitas.
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Bounce,

I love pumpkin seeds. So, do you buy a fresh pumpkin and remove the seeds to roast them? I just buy a bag of roasted pumpkin seeds. They are delicious.

I have been buying large bags of almonds and making my own almond butter. Super easy to do. I put a spoon of almond butter in my oatmeal with a spoon of maple syrup and a splash of almond milk.

It’s my favorite way to eat oatmeal.
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I tried to cut a jack o lantern once and made a huge mess! LOL 😆

Occasionally, I buy pumpkins for decorating. I have never bought one to cook. I wouldn’t have any idea what to do with it. I would need to do some research.

I buy canned pumpkin to make pumpkin bread. I have never made a pumpkin pie. There is an ice cream place near me that does seasonal ice creams. Oh my gosh, the pumpkin one tastes like frozen pumpkin pie. It’s delicious.

I never drink pumpkin spice lattes. I hate flavored coffees. In my opinion they are for people who don’t like the taste of coffee.

Once in awhile I buy pumpkin or sunflower seeds to sprinkle on top of salads.
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It was my temporary avatar for 30 min. last night, I don't think anyone saw it. A photo of a baby sitting inside a pumpkin.
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Our weather is so crazy that plants don’t know when to bloom! Hahaha 🤣
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How do you "find" a pumpkin? Are your neighbours pranking you?
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Found a punkin in the garden.
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The other day R noticed an apple tree that had both apples and apple blossoms on it. That's a first!
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Pamzi
i noticed this weekend I had lilies blooming that normally bloom in the spring.
Crazy
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My lilacs are blooming! wth?
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After a couple of unseasonably warm weeks the temperature has taken a nose dive and we've been getting what looks like lake effect rain squalls, my rain gauge shows almost 4" 😲. Fortunately I heeded the forecast and have most of my garden put to bed, there are just a few tomatoes and peppers left out and my dahlias and cannas.
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Lavender,

I am so sorry about your recent hurricane. So sad.

I have been through my share of storms too. I’m in New Orleans.

Katrina wrecked havoc on our city in August of 2005. Storms are miserable to deal with.
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Thought I'd post on the Gardening Thread because it's about nature.

My area had a Hurricane last night & my favorite city (right next to where I live) in under water now. There was a storm surge of around 9 feet, and many people have 4-5 feet of water in their houses.
People and pets are being rescued, and there's so much damage.

I live in very close to the Gulf and am saddened to see the sweetest little town that revolved around nature, gardens, tourism, wildlife preserves,& manatee preservation so badly damaged. Such nice people there, too. Always so friendly and happy to live among nature. Am so thankful that we're not hearing about injuries or deaths, but am sad about the whole situation.

There's no damage where I live as I'm not in a storm surge zone - but, am just feeling so bad about this and don't have any family to share it with. Sorry, if this post doesn't quite fit into the Gardening topic, but I thought Gardeners and nature lovers would understand.
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Daughter,

That sounds fabulous! 😊
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We just went to TX and visited a famously not good Mexican restaurant where at the end of the meal the servers bring fresh, hot sopaipillas that you “stab” with a container of honey so the honey is inside. Beyond yummy, and the perfect end to a mediocre meal! I’m sure someone can name the chain, it’s been around forever. It’s our favorite use of honey!
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I think it's one of those "you can't prove a negative" things, maybe your allergies would be worse without the honey.
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Do you believe that if we eat honey from our local areas that it will help with our allergies?

I am allergic to everything. I eat local honey that I buy at the farmers market. I still deal with allergies!

I find prices are going up at the farmers markets. I do enjoy going though. Lots of great vendors.
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LOL Send, my aunt and uncle kept honeybees and he also used bee stings for his arthritis.
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I’m seeing lots of butterflies near my plumbago plants. So pretty!
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How to tell the bees to use a different entrance, lol.
You may have to learn to use Beespeak!
Start practicing your Zzzz's and hummms! 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝🐝 🐝 🐝 🐝 You will be very bizzy!

Online mentions spraying vinegar for honeybees, to get them to move on.
Maybe a can of open vinegar nearby the entrance (not both entrances) will get them to move or make a new entrance?

One elderly old coot I met had the bees sting his hands several times to cure arthritis.
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I have lots of bumblebees all over my flowers now which I know is a good thing. I guess I will have to think about how to block up the current entrances later in the year or early next spring, but they would be welcome to live under my shed if they would only find new a way in and out.
Our front veranda bees returned every year until my father rebuilt the porch. I've wondered since then why my father didn't do anything to get rid of them because all of us were stung occasionally - although now that I think of it I can't remember him ever being stung 🤔
The dog hated them, he made a sport out of chasing and killing bees 🐝
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Found this:
Bumblebee nests don't live for long, so the nest should die naturally within a few months. After that time, the new queens will have flown from the nest to hibernate in the soil elsewhere. It is possible that a different bumblebee queen will find and use the same hole next year.
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