Tuesday, May 20, 2014

In the Garden

Gardening has never thrilled me as much as it has this year. Last year at this time, I had a newborn and I was in the new baby fog which consists of mostly feeding, changing diapers and sleeping whenever possible. From time to time, I'd strap that new baby to me and we'd go out to pick peas and pull a few weeds. Whenever I felt frusterated that I couldn't be out gardening more, I reassured myself that next year that baby would be one and that next year, could officially be the year of the garden.

Every chance I get, I want to sneak out there and see how things are growing. The other night I even had to ask my husband if it was normal that I enjoy it this much. Hopefully he wasn't just being nice when he reasureed me that I'm normal. I just can't help it. I love growing stuff, I guess. Babies, chickens, broccoli....I'm a gal that likes to grow things.

Here's a little bit of what we have going on right now:

The raised beds that Jeremiah built for me almost 3 years ago. I love them.
 This bed is filled with garlic, beets, spinach and carrots. Until just a few days ago, we had a cold case over this one. The cold case helped me start things early. In the fall, we'll put the cover back on and I'd like to continue to grow a few cooler weather crops throughout the fall and winter.
 Strawberries. I've promised Paisley that as soon as we start harvesting berries, we'll make a pie.
 One of the mistakes we made last year was not covering our berries with a net.
Every time a berry ripened, the birds were out there eating it, before we even had a chance. It was like they were just sitting there, waiting for it to turn red.
 This year, the berries are covered. Sorry, Robins.
 For now, we've let the strawberries go crazy and take over an entire raised bed. Not sure if we'll keep it this way, but's that's what's happening for now. There are literally hundreds of berries in there waiting to ripen. These are one of those crops that I know won't be going to waste.
 Who could ever have too many strawberries? I don't think it's possible.
 Chive flower. It's pretty, don't you think?
Big Mama. She's a garden helper, since I'm composting the manure for next year's garden. The chickens are a huge garden asset. Plus, I love them and I'll even love them more when they start laying.

 Cherries, ripening. This was a Costco tree that we planted last year.
 Baby apples.
 Hi Chick Chick!
Tilly is turning out to be the shyest of the bunch, which is a bummer since she's one of the prettiest chickens. When it's time to bring them all back into their run, she's always making us sweat.
The last time I cleaned the coop, I chopped up a bunch of rosemary, lemon thyme and lavender and mixed it in with their bedding.
 After a few days, it still smells like fresh herbs in there!
 So, if you have a stinky coop, go mix some herbs in with the wood chips or hay, it really helps.
 The chickens love this Pink Princess bush. Yes, that's really what this bush is called. I'm not making that up.

 One of the new things I'm trying this year is a little pallet garden. I ran out of room in the raised beds and since we had a few pallets, I thought I'd fill them with good soil and plant them.
 So far, I have spaghetti squash, cucumbers, pumpkins and zucchini growing in the pallets. This is all an experiment so, I'll post later about how it's going.

Funny story about the ugly plastic bags over my tomatoes. A few weeks ago, I got a few beautiful tomato plants from a dear friend who happens to be an excellent and very experienced gardener. Well, I'm a still a beginner so, I put my tomatoes in pots and then they sat in the rain. After just a few days, my once very happy tomatoes, looked like they were on the verge of going to tomato heaven. 
When my Dad came over and I showed him my sad tomatoes he told me one of his little gardening secrets. He keeps plastic bags over his tomatoes, with the tops open of course, until we get into the consistently hot weather that the tomatoes love. He always has great tomatoes, so I took his advice and while it might not be pretty, it's working.
The tomatoes are loving the plastic and they've not only come back, but they have also tripled in size in just a week or so.

Since the tomatoes like the hot house effect, I thought I'd cover the jalapeno with plastic as well and...ta da! The jalapeno is happy.
Baby peas, I love them. Hopefully my kids will like them this year.

 The cilantro has been growing really well this year and we've been eating it with everything. It's just one of those things that makes practically anything taste better. Well, except for ice cream.
With limited garden space, I have lettuce growing in pots. Like the cilantro, we've been eating it like crazy, which reminds me that I need to plant more seeds in there.
 Baby corn. Grow corn, grow!
 The raised bed with the peas is also sharing space with the corn and broccoli. This is my first year successfully growing broccoli. Isn't it pretty?

 Baby broccoli.
Aside from these things, I've planted sunflowers, other flowers, herbs and onions. Maybe it's a good thing that I don't have a bigger gardening space for the year. I could possibly spend all day out there and then my family might have to come out and ask for their Mama to come back. 
What are you growing?


  1. Oh my goodness. I just LOVE Beth Moore. We're doing her Breaking Free study at church and it is SO GOOD. Thank you for sharing these! So jealous that you got to see her live! Looking forward to hearing more!

  2. Catie- it was SO good. If you ever get an opportunity to go see her, GO! I'm sure you'd love it. I agree, her studies are great!

  3. WOW! Such an amazing garden! One of my favorite blooms in my garden is also the chives - those purple sunburst-like puffy flowers are so pretty! I love your layout and I am quite jealous of all the berries you will soon be enjoying! Take pictures and share so I can live vicariously. Isn't gardening the best!

  4. Janiene,
    I agree! Gardening is the best. I know you totally get it. I've seen your photos are your garden is beautiful, too. I hope you have a blessed day today!

  5. Your gardens look amazing!!! Such nice neat rows! Mine are a little more...modern art, shall we say? ;) We also have some strawberries in the process of taking over an entire raised bed, and I can't bring myself to get upset over that...best infestation ever!


Thank you for your comments. I read every single one of them and they always make me smile.


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