Friday, June 30, 2017

The Ticky Tacky Redneck Greenhouse

Our route often takes us past a dog club friend's property, where they have dog agility equipment set up in the front field.  There was an old metal 6 sided gazebo frame there that often caught my eye.  I always thought that it would look so cool with beans trained to grow over it, making a leafy little cave.  One day I was over there helping to clean agility equipment for the BC/Yukon Regionals.

Yep, that's me, power washing the inside of the tunnels.

I mentioned to Marilyn that she should grow beans on the gazebo frame.  She laughed and said that shortly they were going to get rid of it.  Well if you know me.......
So I mentioned that I might be interested.  

Her husband called last weekend and said he was wanting it gone, so if we were interested, to come and have a look.  When we got there, he said it might be a wasted trip.  All the nuts and bolts on the frame were rusted.  A couple of welds were broken from the frame being dragged around to mow the grass.  A leg had got bent when hit by the lawnmower.  Larry and I thought it would be okay, as long as we could get it apart.  We gathered some tools, and amazingly, all the bolts cooperated and we got it all apart and stuffed into our little car.

I wanted to keep the momentum going, so that afternoon I put the side walls back together, and then Larry came and helped me with the rafters.

Tuesday we dragged out our big old piece of greenhouse plastic and cut off a piece that we thought might work.
Wednesday I fiddled around with it and got the plastic tied down to the poles, but not the gazebo.  If a wind storm comes along it will just take the plastic and not the gazebo as well.  
I had planted 3/4 of those tomato plants before we went to Oliver last week.


There are strings attached to the rafters and to the plants down the middle. I will twist the plants around the strings as they grow. 
My first job after high school was in a tomato greenhouse, and that is how they tied up their tomatoes.

I did move some of the plants around the edge so that I could tie them to the frame and then as they got taller, could used the strings I stretched between the top and the lower part of the wall.

While I've got you at this garden, I might as well show you the rest.  
Here you are looking at four rows of dahlias, 74 of them.  These make my heart go pitter patter, because they are doing so well, and this time last year I didn't even have the majority of them planted!

I can even see a flower bud!
And look at that thin red line along the leaf, which I would never have noticed if not for this picture.

From the north end of the garden. Photo bombing on the right is one of three red currant bushes.  It was an excellent year for them and I picked five buckets, yet to be made into jelly.  Behind them, out of sight, are five blackcurrant bushes, yet to be picked

To the left of the dahlias are another two rows with 26 dahlias.  I told Larry I had 100 dahlias planted, and his only comment was 'Why?'.
And to the left of those are 4 rows of potatoes, which I hilled up tonight. To the very left is a wild mess of raspberries.


On the other side of the raspberries (to the right in this photo) are a few blueberry bushes, a massive rhubarb patch that has done sooo well after I transplanted them last year, then a row of blueberry bushes.
I'm hoping the streamers will keep the birds off the blueberries, but I have my doubts as I saw a robin in there tonight.  I've got some other shiny metallic tape to hang up that worked well on the figs last year, and also on the red currants.

On the other side of the blueberries is a row with 19 zucchini plants, it extends down into the shade, which ends up in the sun about 10am.  I'm hoping there will be zukes ready in a couple of weeks.

Blueberries starting to ripen, I've eaten one or two

Raspberries too

Little tomatoes

Squash seeded directly into the manure pile.  I'm interested to see how they do

And back down at the house, a couple of roses

I've spent a lot of hours in that garden this week, and have thoroughly enjoyed myself.  I'm reminded of how much I enjoy growing food... and dahlias 𝨝😉.


  1. Well, it all looks fabulous to me. My gosh your plants look so abundant and healthy. Amazing!

  2. diane in northern wisJuly 1, 2017 at 5:33 PM

    Wow ....everything looks just superb! I love your garden....I love your berries .... I love your dahlias....soon to have beautiful blooms.....I love your roses and all your vegies. What a great garden you've got going. Please keep up the great info and pictures. It all is looking awesome. Good for you!

  3. That old gazebo has been transformed into something quite useful!!
    74 Dahlias? Wow! Everything seems to be thriving in your garden. The weather is cooperating nicely.

  4. 100 dahlias??? Do you have to dig them back up for the winter? Still...looking forward to seeing lots of blooms :-).

    1. Well, if I want to save them, and divide them up and sell some......yes, I have to dig them up! I will be regretting it in the Fall, I can guarantee it!

  5. Karen, you are the smartest, hardest working woman I've ever known! Ever!! That is a beautiful garden. Will you show us a picture when the dahlias are in bloom, please? I love that you and Larry tore down that frame and hauled it home. What a neat gazebo. I want to see it later too! That first picture of you is so cute and so funny, and speaking of funny, Larry asking 'why' when you told him about the 100 dahlias cracked me up. It reminded me of the time I worked like a dog for eight hours cleaning up the back yard after we had several large trees cut down. I couldn't wait for Dan to get home and see how much progress I had made...but his comment was, 'you didn't happen to find my pocket knife, did you'. Men! :)


  6. i really like this topic thanks for sharing this blog.


  7. Your garden is beautiful! That is a bunch of Dahlias but I bet you sell them all! You will have lots of color! I always wondered about the tomato plants growing in greenhouses...makes sense now Love your roses photos too! :)


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