HELEN LANG: Thrilled by this vast land

What a wonderful country we are lucky enough to live in

What a wonderful country we are lucky enough to live in. Canada Day is rightly a day for parades, music,and celebration of our amazing good fortune.

Some years ago my eldest daughter and I travelled by train right across Canada. She, by travelling as my care-giver, got a reduced fare. To me it was the trip of a lifetime. It is such an amazing country: oceans, mountains, grasslands, lakes, forests, cities. Whatta country!

I had the lower berth, so had the window at the foot of the bed. I reversed my position and had my head by the window and, by raising the blind, I could watch the passing scenery all night long. My daughter wasn’t too thrilled and suggested I close it, which I did (mostly). I left it open about an inch and a half and spent hours being thrilled by the enormity of this vast land.

The sidings in many cases contained freight cars pulled off the main line. These cars were loaded with grain, lumber, produce, farm machinery, cars — an abundance of everything. My silly heart swelled with pride in my country and its riches. No thanks to me, of course. I’m just glad to be a part of such a splendid land.

Now, back down to earth (the right spot for a garden column).

We are now approaching the heart of summer and already the temperatures soar, so it’s water, water, water! Never mind the lawn. It will doubtless go brown but grass is hard to kill and when the fall rains start, it will all be green again.

If you feel you have to water it, I’d do it in the evening so the grass has all night to recover and starts off the next day refreshed.

I know we are warned that we should always water in the morning, that leaving it wet all night promotes the formation of mildew, but I have never seen a mildewed lawn, have you?

I wouldn’t water either the vegetables or the flower beds in the evening though, just to be on the safe side. Twice a week should be enough for lawns, if you water thoroughly and deeply.

My beloved husband, Jim, who wasn’t “into gardening” would attempt to water if I were away (after much urging on my part). His idea of watering was “If the soil turns black, its enough.” It isn’t! The vegetables would benefit from watering at least every second day, and hanging baskets possibly twice a day.

If you are going to be away for two or more days I’d move baskets and pots into the shade. Smaller pots could be set into a plastic tub with a small amount of water in it and maybe, if you have a friendly neighbour, he or she would do some watering for you — especially if you were to offer to do the same for him or her (plus, maybe … a small gift).

Helen Lang has been the Peninsula News Review’s garden columnist for more than 30 years.


Just Posted

Convicted drug trafficker asks Victoria courtroom for chance to ‘turn this around’

Horst Schirmer sentenced for convictions on five counts of possession related to trafficking

Pipeline protestors plan march as Trudeau gives Trans Mountain the go-ahead,

20 kilometre march to protest the pipeline starts in Victoria, ends on Saanich Peninsula

Union Club of B.C. votes in its first female president

16-year member Grace Van den Brink previously served as vice president

$11 million overdraw for McKenzie Interchange construction

The project has been delayed multiple times and is now estimating a budget of $96 million

Alzheimer Society calls for helpline volunteers in Greater Victoria

Charity is in ‘urgent need’ as calls on the rise

VIDEO: Trans Mountain expansion project gets green light, again

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the decision in Ottawa on Tuesday afternoon

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of June 18

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you support the government’s decision to approve the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion?

The federal government announced Tuesday its approval for the Trans Mountain pipeline… Continue reading

Man to be sentenced for sexual abuse of young girl in Nanaimo

Stephen Mark Castleden also sentenced for child pornography-related charges

MPs hear retired B.C. nurse’s petition to change compensation for fatal medical errors

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Horgan says he’ll still defend B.C. coast after second Trans Mountain approval

Meanwhile, one B.C. First Nation has announced plans for a legal challenge

VIDEO: Firefighters stop blaze from spreading after BMW crashes at Saratoga Speedway

Victoria-based businessmen were ‘corner training’ on Father’s Day when incident took place

Demonstrators on either side of Trans Mountain debate clash in Vancouver

Crowd heard from member of Indigenous-led coalition that hopes to buy 51% of expansion project

Grieving B.C. mom hopes Facebook message leads to new investigation into son’s Surrey homicide

Criminal Justice Branch didn’t lay charges, concluding no substantial likelihood of murder or manslaughter conviction

Most Read