Join Janet on her adventures as a designer, writer, maker, and farmer in montana. no two days are ever the same. you might even see a bear or two.

More Garden Cleanup

More Garden Cleanup

I finally got back out to the garden Friday morning to finish cleaning up that raspberry bed. The herb bed here by the house is still pretty soggy, so I postponed transplanting lavenders from there to the veggie garden until things dry out a bit.

I was hoping to dig up the invading raspberry plants by the roots, as I had done on the first pass, but I got to the section of the bed that was thick enough that even the “Root Slayer” shovel (a gift from the husband’s mother) wasn’t helping. Instead, I went through and lopped off the canes just above root level, then raked them all out. The husband very helpfully rototilled the roots under on that side:


And on the other side:


This is the side where my berry bushes are going to go. (I think it’s funny that one of the currant bushes photobombed the picture with its branch.)

That’s the only part of the garden that is getting tilled. I didn’t know how else to deal with those raspberry roots. Now I need to stay on top of keeping the suckers pulled up when I see them. And the ground squirrels are going to have to work harder to stay out of the sights of my .22 now that they have less cover.

I gave the lavender hedge a haircut.


It smells wonderful when I do that.

It is supposed to dry out and warm up this week. I’ll get the lavenders moved, start working on cleaning up the strawberry bed, and plant peas. I’ll wait a couple of weeks on beans and corn yet. Tomatoes and cucumbers won’t get put out until after Memorial Day, when the chance of frost drops dramatically. It did snow one year on June 10, so that schedule is not foolproof, but we can’t wait forever.

Our neighbor, Mike, gave us a bunch of Jerusalem artichokes, also known as sunchokes. They grow well here—so well, in fact, that we know not to put them in the garden. We’re trying to figure out where on the property we can plant them where we won’t care if they spread.

I’d also like to cover plant some buckwheat in the pig pasture, but that’s on the list of “this would be nice to do,” instead of “this has to be done.”


It rained Friday afternoon, which gave me time to work on a sewing project that’s been marinating in my brain. I know I have been deliberately vague about some of this stuff, but until my ideas are ready for prime-time, I don’t want to reveal a lot of details. This project involves using some two-sided fusible webbing to fuse an appliqué onto a base fabric. The piece to be fused is asymmetric, so it needs to be cut out in such a way that when it is adhered to the base fabric, it is oriented correctly. Step one is to trace the piece onto the fusible webbing. The fusible webbing has paper on both sides, and theoretically, one of those layers of paper is supposed to come off more easily that the other. I traced the shape, pulled the paper off the side that came off, then realized that the piece would be backward if I fused it. (Once the paper comes off, it’s game over for that piece.) I went back and traced the shape again, but backwards. However, this time, the paper on the other side of the fusible web came off instead, meaning the piece would still be backwards if I fused it onto the base fabric.


I got it right on the third try. I was relating all of this to the husband last night. He said to me, “How do you work through this? How do you work through something like this when you can’t see it in your brain?”

With a lot of trial and error, that’s how. Basically, I am just fumbling around in the dark.

Thankfully, the idea works as I was hoping it would. I want to make one or two more prototypes and get some input from potential customers.


We went to a potluck last night in memory of our friend, Bill, who passed away two years ago. It was at Bill’s memorial service that the deck collapse happened in June 2017. Our friend, Tommy (who has the upholstery business and the industrial sewing machines)‚ hosted the potluck in his backyard. These are all people we have known and have been socializing with for 20+ years. We got to see our friends Tom and Marcie. Their youngest son and his wife and daughter live in our rental house. Their oldest granddaughter is graduating from high school in June and she has decided to attend college in Seattle next fall, so I’ll have someone else to visit when I go there.

We didn’t stay as long as I would have liked to, because I made a tactical error and didn’t dress properly for being outside. I’ve lived in Montana long enough that I should have known better. It was fun to see everyone, though, after a long winter, and there will be other get-togethers this summer that won’t require hats and mittens.

Get Your Grocery Bags Here

Get Your Grocery Bags Here

Gathering Inventory

Gathering Inventory