Posted in edible garden, Garden Journal 2019, Gardening in Spring

Weekly Garden Journal #6

The rain has been relentless for the last couple of days and the gardens love it.  This morning I took these pictures in a light sprinkle of raindrops and the green was more lush than the camera caught…still, you get the picture…

The Edible Garden

There are zucchini and cucumber fruits forming and the paltry first planting of green beans are starting to bud out.  In addition to already harvesting 4 lovely Big Bertha peppers, I’ve counted a dozen tomatoes on the Better Boys and Romas and the sweet cherry 100 is blooming on…

The daylilies are ready to pop, with the Stellas leading the way…

The begonias that I overwintered are as beautiful as ever.  I have trimmed the mint, but I don’t think it likes its spot in the west sun too well…not a problem on these rainy/cloudy days, but I need to move them eventually.

I can’t stop buying things to plant, but Ronnie’s is down to just about nothing and no more trucks will be replenishing.  I might hit up some big box stores for some rescue plants…As long as I still have empty containers and a barrel of soil, might as well take in some strays…

Keep on Growin’

 

Posted in 2018, gardening, Gardening in Summer, The Edible Garden 2018

July 2 Garden Photos

The rains continued to do our watering, perhaps a little over-zealously, until Friday last and now it’s our turn.  The garden is in Full Summer Swing…

I pulled up the first crop of green beans — about 3 lbs — and got them cleaned and ready to be snapped by Sonnystone Campers next week.  Grandpa should have plenty of new potatoes, too.

We’re over-run with Squash And Zucchini!!!  It is a regular on the menu now, and I’ve frozen a couple of lbs! The Garden Fairies Love Me Again…!

Still waiting for the tomatoes to ripen up, but that should be just in time for my visitors.  We’re leaving the garden under Jr’s care while we drive down to Disney World to pick up the Joses and bring them back for Camp Sonnystone.  They will be here until the 20th or so, and I know you’ll want to check out the Fun we’ll be having over at The News.

 

Peace

Posted in 2017, edible garden, gardening, Gardening in Summer, sowing & reaping

Good heavens, it’s been over a month…

While I was wrangling grand-daughters around Sonnystone Acres, husband was taking care of the watering.  I managed to do some trimming and deadheading, and of course, some harvesting.  We’ve had an abundance of all kinds of tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, bell and banana peppers, and onions.  With a crew of eaters, it’s all been enjoyed!

We’ve now pulled up most of the squash plants (finally succumbed to the powdery mildew), the onions, and the arugula is long gone, so we tilled and treated and planted a second crop of green beans, beets, and spinach for the fall.  There’s still a ton of tomatoes and a plethora of peppers on the vine.

We saved most of the roses that we put in pots.  One more had to be removed from the front, so we have plenty to fill in with this fall after we do some serious soil amending.  Just the way it goes, that now I have too many!

While the kids were here, playing out in the pool, we heard the ca-racking and swish of a tree falling nearby.  It is a tall, old,  cherry tree that is on the border of our property and it fell toward the center of our front yard, stopping in a cluster of branches of another tree,  just above the electrical wires that connect our house to the street lines.  Hmm…it will inevitably fall–maybe tomorrow, maybe next year–so do we want to let nature take its course?  Hell, no.  We went through that when “the trees fell” from straight-line winds slamming through and the entire electrical box was pulled from the side of the house.  Power outages do not amuse me.  Actually, it’s a little cheaper to let it happen and then fix it, since the Tree Guys will have to bring in a crane, but we’re not really that broke!  Yet.

I need to do some dead-heading, but the flowers are looking good.  The front roses are okay, too.  For now, I’m just enjoying the gardens from the porch.

Peace

Posted in 2017, edible garden, Gardening in Summer

Roses, tomatoes, and edibles

The roses were a disaster.

First I underwatered, then I overwatered, then the bugs ate lots of leaves, so we sprayed insecticide soap. Casey had piled the mulch on too thick around the roots so fungus set it, so we pulled the mulch away and sprayed with Neem oil.

 At that point,  there were 3 of the 9 that were looking good.  The middle 2 were gone, so I pulled them and continued to baby the rest.

 Finally, I gave in and removed all but the 3 good ones, cleaned up the mulch and soil, planted 6 more (25% off, thank goodness) and we’re back in business.

I’m still a little afraid of them, though…

 

The Edible Garden has provided us with a meal of green beans, 1 zucchini, 2 yellow squash, shallots, basil, a bell pepper, and a couple handfuls of sweet cherry tomatoes.

 

 A Case of Mistaken Identity

Back Story:  I originally planted 3 better boy tomatoes and 2 romas.

The romas looked strong, but 2 of the better boys looked really spindly, so I planted 3 more.

Did you guess?  The spindly “better boys” were really romas…

It’s all looking quite grand…

 

Everything is ready for a visit from my grandies…

the banana tree unfurls…

We’ll be having Camp Sonnystone beginning the 10th.  That’s a lot of fun. We’re going to trip in the trailer for a couple of days.  We’ll go to the zoo, the museum, the library, Ellis Park, New Harmony…

Join us in July at  The News from Sonnystone Acres and don’t miss out on any festivities!

Peace

 

Posted in 2017, edible garden, gardening, Gardening in Spring, Photo Blog

6-or-so-weeks-old…

I had bought some better-boys that looked so much sturdier than the others, but when I got them home, they looked (and grew) nothing like the usual bb’s I’ve planted.  They continued to just bush out, sort of like a husky cherry, so I ran out and bought 3 more better boys just before we went to NYC.   I just popped the weird ones over to some pots and they’re okay.  The new, normal-looking, plants are small, but they’ll catch up by August or so…  In the meantime, I evidently mislabeled a roma as a better boy when I was separating starts, so there is no telling what we’ll end up with!

Michael kept the veggies in good shape while we were gone and added the roses to the water-list.  Still, the roses want attention:  the leaves were pretty well chewed when we returned.  We’ve saturated them with insecticide soap and they look some better, but…  I thought knockout roses were supposed to be easy-peasy.  Is it just me?

As we sneak up on summer, the humidity around here is sticky, and the bugs are god-awful.  I have a patch of chiggers living where the sun don’t shine, and the itching is insufferable.  We spray our lawn with something that keeps down the insects, but by the time we get it done this year I’m going to be raw…  No amount of deet works against chiggers, so I’m just spraying off the upper torso.  So far, skeeters are minimal.

It will be worth it when I’m feasting on zucchini and tomatoes and green beans and bell peppers…

Peace

Posted in 2017, edible garden, gardening, Gardening in Spring

The Edible Garden is In!

It’s all in…mulched and ready to grow…

I’m trying square-foot-type gardening, partly because I don’t have much faith in some of the peppers I started—not much root to them–and went out and bought some bigger ones, meaning I ended up with 12 bell peppers of assorted types, and 4 sweet banana peppers.  Same with the tomatoes:  I planted 3 better boys before the monsoons hit and they looked pretty bedraggled when it was all over, so I bought 3 bigger ones.  There are also 1 sweet cherry 100, 2 romas, and one husky.  There’s a lot of basil, some sage, rosemary, parsley, and oregano, as well as the broccoli and onions I planted in March.  I put down some carrot and beet seeds around the blueberry bushes…and don’t forget the bush beans and pole beans.   If it all grows, I’ll have plenty to eat and give away!

We’ve mulched around the entire house and it looks great…

I planted some wave petunias in an old stump (ala Pinterest), and surrounded geraniums with marigolds in the old wash tubs…

This lovely Sweet William is peeping out from under the daylilies..

When the rain finally returned, we brought out the houseplants and porch furniture…

 

Now, it’s just maintenance…and a fair bit of luck…

Peace

Posted in edible garden, Gardening in Summer, Photo Blog

Snappy Shots

The West Front Flower Patch…

The Edible Garden…

No rain has helped us to keep the gardens hydrated through these hot, muggy days, so that’s been my major accomplishment for the week.   Our local Shriner Fest started Wednesday and I’ve been distracted by the Air Show and my Favorite–Ultimate Air Dogs.  After I do some lavender-trimming and day lily dead-heading, I’m heading back down to the Riverfront for More!!!

Enjoy your day and drink water, drink water, drink water..!

Posted in gardening, Gardening in Spring

Excerpts from the Garden Journal

I keep–or try to keep–a written journal of each gardening year, especially for marking my planting and harvest times.  I also try to keep track of what worked, what didn’t, and just how much work it took to get it to work!!!   I usually start out strong, chronicling my seed-starting and planting precisely, then trail off once I’ve gotten to the just maintenance part.  Last night I caught up with my journal after a 2-week hiatus.

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6/15/16—

I did it again—neglected my garden journal.

Everything has grown like crazy–temps summer-like and humid.

Front porch:  wicker planter and houseplants out 6/13.  Fountain is cool.

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Hydrangeas —  cut back to clear window 6/12  and now rain has front blooms on the ground.  Need to cut them all back.  Blooms cut from back are drying on front porch.  Laid soaker hose.

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North Garden —  added daisies, pruned and trimmed, put riprap around edge, added soaker hose.

Butterfly/Bird garden (east) —  Lovely!  Added a flat dish hummingbird feeder and hung all 3 from trellis.  Read an article that said this may discourage bully-hummers, but..?  Planted honeysuckle at N end of trellis—hoping to train it to cover top.  Added soaker hose.

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Daylilies —  Huge (will need to be divided this year).  Not sure I appreciate them enough for the work of constant deadheading the slimy blooms.

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Pineapple Sage –okay.  Holly — good.  Soaker hose to all .

West (front) garden.  Saw a mom goldfinch land on a coneflower, shadowed by her young’un.  She tried another and decided finally on a large, more open bloom down the way.  Baby followed and she showed him how to munch the seeds from the flower, then flew up to a branch to watch proudly as he/she fed like a pro.    Black-eyed Susan vine growing like a weed and the Moonflower Vine is Alive!!!

Edibles— I do believe I’ll have ripe tomatoes by the 4th of July!  Almost lost the bush zucchini, but I covered a broken spot with dirt and it looks like it’s surviving.  fingers crossed.  3 of the ca wonder peppers look crappy, others okay.

It has rained the last 2 days and today’s high is predicted to be 97 degrees!!!   Sounds extremely sticky, so I’m glad the pool is up now.   Olivia and I are headed over to Henderson for lunch and to check out the Handy Blues Fest.

Stay cool, wherever you are!

Posted in Gardening in Spring, Photo Blog, sowing & reaping

Garden Photo Log

Just a taste of what’s happening in the gardens here at Sonnystone…

It’s all good…  play in the dirt

Posted in gardening, Gardening in Spring

Catching up with the gardens…

It seems like I have been gardening for months with nothing to show for it.  Well, actually, I have been gardening for months.   I planted spinach, lettuce, sugar peas, arugula back in March, covering them several times as the temps dipped.  In fact, this Spring has been pretty sucky, staying cold until a couple of weeks ago!  We enjoyed a couple of nice salads, and replanted that area with green beans.  The peas are still coming on–sweet Oregon Sugar Pods II–

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We were teased with warmer temps for a spell in April, and I divided daisies and pruned, started planting containers, and buying edibles.  I ended up having to re-pot the better boys and finally put them out on May 2.  We still had some lower temps!, but now that Spring has seriously sprung, they are fine.  I always have a problem with bell peppers, so I bought up a dozen of them and I’ve babied them along until planting them just last Saturday.  We put up the poles and the beans are planted, and if you can see, there are 3 squash mounds under them.  I’m trying the bush zucchini this year (as well as my old faithful yellow straight-neck) and I have no idea what to expect.

That, and several rows of bush beans over in the corner, is it for the in-ground garden, but I potted up a whopping 16 basil plants, oregano, sage, lemon balm, a cherry red husky, and cilantro.

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There are some edibles out on the front porch, too (mint, nasturtium, rosemary, lemon verbena), but it’s mostly flowers–petunias, gerbera daisies, vinca…  We bought the water fountain at a rummage sale last year, and I’m loving the sound of the water flowing.  Some creeping jenny and a water hyacinth are in there, too.  I used an old cd-rack as a trellis for the lemon verbena–it likes to grow wonky and it fits the curves…

 

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…and coleus for the shadiest part.DSC_0008

Check out my nasturtium…

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The front flower garden got straightened up, and I added some hollyhocks and a black-eyed susan vine to the mix…

The East side of the house is a bird-haven, and they love it.  I did add a climbing yellow rose bush behind the birdbath…

Last year I had a huge pineapple sage shrub on the corner and it crowded its neighbors, so I removed it and planted another butterfly bush.  We pulled down an ivy trellis and put up a picket gate.  Until the b-bush grows, I’ve got some coreopsis in there…

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The geraniums for the washtubs were some of the first I planted this year, and they are going strong.  The daylilies are starting to come in bloom, too…

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I think I’ve taken you all around the house, now.  You can see what I’ve been up to…well, don’t forget there have been 5 vacation/trips interspersed amongst the planting time!!!

6 tomato plants–3 better boys, 1 cherry husky, 1 sweet cherry 100, 1 roma

2 yellow straight-neck squash

1 zucchini bush squash

12 bell peppers–4 cal wonders, 4 red, 4 big bertha

pole beans, bush beans

tarragon

16 basil

1 sage

1 oregano

1 lemon balm

1 chocolate mint, 1 peppermint

1 lemon verbena

16 petunias

8 vinca

12 geranium

3 coleus

1 nasturtium

2 gerbera daisies

1 black-eyed susan vine

2 hollyhocks

3 coreopsis

2 butterfly bushes

1 rosemary

1 climbing yellow rose

  The deer ate the plants in my urn, so I’m replacing them with red grass.

I have 12 marigolds for I-don’t-know-where—-yet.

Planting is my favorite…

We’ll be home now until mid-July when I fly out to bring the NYC girls home.  Looks like we’ll be eating well this summer!