pussywillows and broad fork

Pussywillow Cuttings and the Broadfork

Pussywillow Cuttings and the Broadfork

Chocolate Box Cottage Diary, Volume 2

Week 9: March 4, 2022

Tasha Tudor's Pussywillows

Pussywillow Wishes

Wanted: pussywillow cuttings

UPDATE – pussywillow cuttings received from a friend, Donna Sullivan Smith – thank you!

I left my pussywillows behind four years ago when we moved from Oak Haven Farm to Chocolate Box Cottage and would love to have them again. Their fuzzy silver catkins are easily “forced” to bloom in water and they’re quite willing to put out masses of roots if you forget them in a vase for a few weeks. They are one of the easiest plants to root in water. You can even use water that pussywillow (or willow) stems have been soaking in as a rooting hormone for cuttings of other plants.

Pussywillow deficit aside, there are other glimpses of spring visible to those who look carefully. The almond tree and Daphne odora are vying for attention, along with cheerful bunches of daffodils that wave hello to me in the morning when I go to gather eggs from the henhouse.

Sweet 16 Anniversary Tea

Happy Griffith Anniversary

My Mom and stepdad Rolly celebrated 16 years of marriage this week. ❤️❤️ Their special day coincided with our weekly tea date, so you know I brought tea!

A wish from Sam

New herb garden

Sam has often expressed a wish of lightening the task of garden prep. The man uses a shovel as though it were an extension of his arm. He received a large, oddly-shaped, and unexpected package from UPS this week. 📦 His soon-to-be new favorite tool, the broadfork by Meadow Creature was inside.

This thing is built stout. Carries a life-time warranty, which Sam took as a challenge. Unfortunately, it arrived a week AFTER Sam surprised me by hand digging the new apothecary garden space.

Garden and Animals

Two rams and a ewe

Three Painted Desert sheep posing for a photo.

Henry rabbit in his homemade cage or should I say Sam-made? Sam built a wonderful 5-stall rabbit hutch in the garden of our previous home, which we had to leave behind when we moved. Upon our arrival at Chocolate Box Cottage, Sam converted a weathered cabinet he found in the barn to a rabbit cage. The first violas are peeing shy faces in front of the greenhouse step.

Virginia creeper no leaves

Soon bare stems of Virginia creeper will be clothed in green along the garden fence.

A-frame greenhouse with mismatched panel

That odd off-color panel is disturbing my sense of fitness. I’m lucky to have such a small “problem.” I’m also lucky to have a greenhouse!

on camera

I unfortunately had to redo a video project that fell short of requirements. (The first take was slightly out-of-focus.) I use a Canon EOS M50.


Good Food

Sheet pan supper

Sheet pan suppers: one of my favorite easy dinner short-cuts. Fat and meat juices flavor the veggies and only one pan to wash.

Beef & Barley soup

Leftover frozen roast beef becomes Beef and Barley Soup with Root Vegetables. This was the day I broke the lid to my favorite Emile Henry Dutch oven by accidentally pushing it off the counter onto the tile floor.

chicken enchilada dinner

Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas (with Fire Cider Seasoning) and salad of greens grown in the windowsill.

Kombucha crock with scoby hotel

Time to restart the kombucha crock and restock the SCOBY hotel in case of mishaps with fruit flies or mold. My kombucha crock was a Craigslist find, so I am sorry I cannot share a resource with you on where to find this particular one.)


Flavia deLuce series by Alan Bradley features an 11-year-old chemist and aspiring detective set in 1950’s England. Appropriate for kids 10 and up and adults, too!

Pearl gazes out of her window garden of pea greens destined for the salad bowl or a stir fry.

What’s happening in your world? We know there’s a ton of bad news that we cannot control outside of prayer. Let’s make an effort, for it IS an effort, to be extra kind and spread hope wherever God sends us. Blessings to you this week!

And, if you’re curious about last week’s happenings at Chocolate Box Cottage, you can visit here.


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