Monthly Archives: June 2012

Get Gardening: Pest Control, Au Naturale

I just love this time of year… the weather is getting warmer (somewhat here in Vancouver), flowers are springing up everywhere, and the babies! Ahhh the babies – all of mother natures liveliness is thriving.

All of this nice weather calls for me out to my little patio “garden” (that’s looking pretty sad I might say after a looong winter)… I don’t know about you, but every year my little patio garden seems to have some tiny creature making it’s home amongst my strawberries or cilantro… now, since I want to EAT the produce I grow in my garden, it doesn’t seem right for me to be spraying chemicals all over them – that completely defeats the purpose of growing my own – so I’ve done a LOT of research and compiled it all here for you in one concise post so that you too, can feel good about what you are growing in your garden – pest free!

 

Dish soap – Mix a few drops of your dish soap into a spray bottle of plain ol’ water. I found this to be very effective against aphids, which were the main pest I was dealing with. I found I needed to re-apply every day, but this sure beats chemicals (and aphids).

Vinegar — Mix a small amount of vinegar and sugar in a container, and place it next to your plants. Aphids and fruit flies will be attracted to the smell and drown. *Do not spray your plants with vinegar – trust me, I learned the hard way – it will burn them.

*If you have done this, and you notice that the leaves are burned, you should wash the area out with water right away.

Baking soda — Mix a tablespoon into a spray bottle of approximately ½ a quart of water. This spray is effective against fungus on plants. You will need to re-apply every few days, or until you notice that the fungus is gone.

If you have any natural tips on treating bugs or other ailments that have plagued your garden, please share below!

– B

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The “Annual Summer Adventure” a little background…

Well, it’s official… The 2012 Summer Adventure is booked! This year E and I are travelling to the sunny Okanagan for a friendly visit in Summerland, a Kelowna wine tour, and then top it all off with a family wedding!

A little background on the “Summer Adventure”…

Before I get too far into this year’s adventure (stay tuned for that post in a few weeks), I want to give you some background on how this little tradition all started… Last year, my girlfriend E and I thought it would be fun to go on a stay-cation and explore our “local” land. Since we both live in BC and we really don’t get out and travel around our own Country enough (let alone our own Province), we decided on a 10 day camping trip to Vancouver Island, with a few days to spend on Saltspring Island.

Here’s a map for those of you not familiar with BC and the Gulf Islands:

E is currently living on Vancouver Island in Victoria, so we decided that would be a good place to start off. So, on the Friday evening I packed up my car, literally PACKED! Little D and I said goodbye to the hubbs, and we got on the ferry to Victoria… Little D is my fur-baby… he may also be referred to as LD for short (or DD).

We spent the first night at E’s place, then set off for Tofino bright and early the next morning… in the pouring rain… Don’t you just love BC! Once we arrived in Tofino, the rain happily stopped for us and we camped beach-side in the sun for 4 days – our campsite was absolutely beautiful! We had all sorts of stuff planned (even a whale watching tour) but we just couldn’t pull ourselves away from that beach. It seemed to stretch on for miles and miles, and the sand felt like a soft sponge beneath my feet. We ended up giving ourselves natural  pedicures from all the bare-foot walking on that super-fine sand, and let me tell you, there is nothing quite like waking up to the cool, damp, mossy smells of the west coast, while enjoying your Baliey’s & coffee in the sun, on the beach, with two of your best friends!

After 4 days in Tofino (on a deflated air mattress) we were ready for a real bed to sleep in, so we packed the car back up and carried on to Parksville where we stayed with my Aunt, Uncle and their three dogs for 2 days. It was a great opportunity to get in some family time – they are so much fun, I always love visiting them! While in Parksville we visited a local market and of course, did some more beach combing where we picked up some lovely sand dollars to add to our already vast collection of shells from Tofino. We then had to “improvise” and get a new air mattress for our second round of camping…

So, once we had a few nights to recover from sleeping on the ground, we hopped on a small ferry over to Saltspring Island were we camped again for 2 days, then spent our final night in a quaint little B&B. I used to visit Saltspring often when I was a kid with a friend whose family still owns a cabin there. I absolutely ADORE that Island, so full of wonder… it really has a different pulse from the city. We spent the afternoon on Saturday at the “internationally acclaimed” village market where we picked up all sorts of local goods, and the last night we spent at a local B&B that was just too cute (and pet friendly of course). It was really nice to be able to have a comfortable shower, rest up, settle in for a bottle of wine (or two) and get a good nights sleep to prepare for our trip home.

Since we had SO much fun last year we decided then, that we should make this an annual thing… and thus, the “Summer Adventure” was born! This is something we just so happen to plan together, just us girls (no boys allowed), but we have always ended up meeting with and visiting others along the way. This year, we decided on a Wine Tour in the Okanagan that will be coming up this week (June 6-10) so stay tuned for my post on that adventure!

– B

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