Wednesday, May 10, 2017

My Bucket List

This isn't one of those "before I kick the bucket I want to..." posts, but rather a review of products for my local Home Hardware in Alcona that begins with a bucket. Home Hardware Stores are Canadian and independently owned.
Here's my bucket, already dirty as you can see with a 19L capacity which is about 5 US gallons.  
 I was to have 'live' product to review as well but when I visited the local Alcona Home Hardware store the only plants that had come in so far was this rack of Ontario native plants. No problem for me, I was excited! A certified wildlife habitat property means I use quite a few native plants and being offered more made me happy.
Into my bucket they went, keeping them upright and avoiding a spill of soil in my car.
Here they are to see better: a pink and white trillium, and a pale coneflower. 
The trilliums joined a primrose in a shady corner under a dwarf crabapple tree in the backyard.
A stainless steel mini backhoe came home with me hanging on the side of my new bucket. If you subscribe to Mark Cullen's newsletter you've read how much he likes this tool.  I agree, the design made it perfect for cultivating a small veggie patch and it will be good for weeds between them in the summer. I found the weight of the stainless steel head an advantage when working the soil as it added power to my digging.
I'm not finished with the bucket yet.
Here's our backyard pond as it looked until this spring. You see we experienced a leak last summer and after taking the waterfall apart, hubby found a few places where the liner had slipped and was allowing water to escape. Home to over 40 goldfish, and overwintering frogs was a concern for draining the pond and working in it. Through a fate of nature a mink discovered our pond during the late winter months and ate everything except...we found 2 surviving goldfish and a baby frog. The goldfish buried themselves in the silt in the deep section but when scooping out leaves and muck is when I found the frog. They can jump really high! I was thankful to have the tall Home Hardware bucket that it couldn't get out of nor be taken by a predator. It stayed in the bucket with a few inches of pond water for two days. A photo would have been nice but most of the time the frog was hiding under all the snails I'd salvaged.  
The bucket has since been hauling plant divisions, compost and tools around the garden. Buckets are a neat thing that can be turned over and become a seat too. I recommend a folded towel for cushioning and you're at the right height for pruning shrubs, roses and doing other odd jobs. If you have a kneeling pad for those jobs where you must be on your knees, keep the bucket upside down beside you to use for leverage to get back to a standing position. 
One of the products I was given was a bag of lawn fertilizer.
CIL Golfgreen is a good brand, one we used when we had grass but anyone who knows our property... well, we don't have any. I could have turned down the bag but knew I could ask a friend to use it on their grass for me, and trust their findings. Well, the bag did go to a trustworthy friend, our Pastor and with all the downpours of rain we've had over the past couple of weeks, there hasn't been an opportunity to spread it without the fertilizer being washed away.
CIL plus Iron has an exclusive slow release formula and with ten times more iron produces thicker and greener grass in as little as three days so I know I'll be hearing results in the near future.
These are the products I received for review but I'll be going back to the Home Hardware Centre to check out what's been added this gardening season. Who can resist a whirligig or two to add some whimsy to the garden? 
With Mother's Day this weekend, I'm sure the Alcona Home Hardware will be hopping.


  1. That's my kind of bucket list πŸ‘ I have a few of those types of buckets and they always get a good workout.

  2. I'm wondering whether a whirlygig would keep the chickens out of my flower garden? I need to grab one of my husbands buckets and claim it for my own! Great ideas for uses!

  3. Your bucket was put to good use, Judith! I always love seeing pics of your beautiful pond and I'm glad that your hubby found the cause of the leakage issues. I need to get my bucket out of the garage and use it for many of your ideas. Happy Mother's Day, my friend!

  4. What a nice review. We use buckets in the garden all of the time. I love your pond and the story. Naughty little mink! More native plants are always very special too. The backhoe, my master gardener would love.

  5. I agree with Kitty...your bucket was indeed put to good use :)

    Your pond is simply delightful and I imagine it's easy to spend a lot of time sitting by it.

    Have a wonderful day! Hugs to you!

  6. I like your bucket tips, Judith, like having it handy for support or as a stool. Who says a bucket has only to contain things. I think my so-called lawn would benefit from the CIL product. Maybe more grass will squeeze out the dandelions popping up these days!



  7. Great bucket tips, Judith! Buckets are valuable commodities in a garden.

  8. Judith, I will snatch up one of my husband's old buckets quick like! He gets 5 gallon buckets sometime from old job sites from their trash pile and brings them home in case we need them. I've used them for stools, turned upside down to spray paint small items, plant tomatoes in them, and well you name it and I've used them. Love your bucket tips. Your pond is so pretty! Love it. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  9. Thank you for these wonderful tips! My Daddy always did like to keep a 5 gallon bucket around, and now, my dear husband does the same. They come in handy for so many things. :) What a beautiful pond! Oh, my, it looks like such a serene place to go and be alone with Jesus and pray!

  10. Ha ha you had me fooled there! What a useful bucket.

  11. Your pond is beautiful. I am so sorry about the loss of fish. Good to be able to get the work done that needs done; if you need work in the future that involves draining the pond, there are companies who do this and they catch the fish and put them in water (with oxygen infusing!) while they are working. We did a pond clean out last year and that's how it worked. I like your trilliums and primula. I planted trillium last year; they came up this year but didn't bloom. I planted more this spring. Hope I get blooms next year! Hugs to you, Beth

  12. Your bucket list was entertaining. I, too, keep a 5 gallon bucket beside me for weeds in the garden. I've never thought of upturning it for a seat, though! Great idea!

  13. The pond is so pretty. I am sorry about that pesky mink.

    Your tip about using the bucket flipped over as leverage for rising is terrific. I hope to remember it!

  14. Great bucket list, full of handy tips. Love your serene pond. How special to see there and take in the beauty.

  15. I love these kinds of bucket lists. :) Buckets are so wonderful and versatile. Sounds like your bucket has definitely been getting some good use. How wonderful to be able to add such lovely local flowers to your garden! Your primrose is gorgeous to!
    I love that you were able to save some things out of your pond, and find the leak!!! I'm sure that this summer your pond will be wonderful to enjoy once again!
    I love whirligigs, and that looks like a fun display of them. I put some from the dollar store out and they are said to keep the rabbits out of the garden because of the unexpected movement. I think it really helps as we have lots of rabbits around.
    I hope you have a wonderful day, perhaps spending some time in your garden!

  16. Your bucket list post was quite entertaining, Judith. I'm glad you were able to save a couple goldfish and the frog. That bucket sounds like it will come in mighty handy for many things. Love your pond and the trilliums too. I am always fascinated with whirligigs. My father and grandfather used to build them out of wood and then paint them. One doesn't see too many wooden ones around here any longer. Wishing you a Happy Mother's Day weekend.


  17. What a lovely pond looks so tranquil . I to have a favorite steal bucket I use I got from the TSC store one of my favorite stores by the way lol ! Yes buckets are handy in many different ways . Lovely photos and post thanks for sharing , have a good weekend and a Happy Mothers Day .

  18. It's great to see the native plants displayed so well - it's easy to make good choices.
    Thanks to this post, I had an aha moment. :) Curious to understand what a whirligig is, I first consulted the Wikipedia and found a beautiful image of a "wind-driven whirligig at a lake in Nova Scotia, Canada"... but no information in Finnish. It's not exactly the same as a pinwheel, is it? According to an online dictionary, it would be "vΓ€kkΓ€rΓ€" in Finnish, an old word I hadn't heard for a long time. Now I understand better some old sayings like "turns like a whirligig". :)

    Happy Mother's Day, dear Judith!

  19. You definitely got a lot of mileage out of your bucket. Good thing that the ice bucket challenge is over!

  20. I love your pond, it must be lovely to sit a while beside it ...
    I enjoyed your post, thank you.

    Wishing you a wonderful weekend

    All the best Jan

  21. I have a lot of 5-gallon buckets in and around my yard too, they are quite handy for so many things! Currently I am mixing small amounts of compost from my pile with potting soil in them and letting them sit for a few days and then using to plant my flowers in. I remember the picture of the mink stealing all your fish, a blessing in disguise, I suppose, since you have to redo the pond. It is a beautiful pond! We love visiting our local hardware stores too, always so much fun in the spring :)

  22. Judith, great tips on different ways to use a 5-gallon bucket -- though I doubt I'll ever have the opportunity to use it to house a frog!


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