Tag Archive for Plant

I Need a Garden Plan.

Yes folks we are presently heading into the third week of  February.  I live in Southern California, the land of sunshine and warm weather.  I have got to get my garden plan together early this year.  Got to!!  Last year I had a pitiful tomato harvest, and I’m sure one of the reasons this happened was just because I started way too late.  I have vowed, mostly to myself, that this year I WILL get my garden going earlier, get the tomatoes started earlier, and cross my fingers for a bountiful harvest.

After quite a few rainfalls over past month or so, this is what my garden plot currently looks like.  There are a few raised garden beds off to the right of this photo, and they are the only thing weedless in the garden right now.

1-how did this happen

The weeds, of course,  have completely taken over and dashed any hopes I may have had of making this an easy Spring clean up.  I say Spring because it’s Southern California, and as soon as the rain slows down for us it is Spring.   Flowers are blooming, weeds are bustling, the time is right for getting ready to plant.

My plan for this Spring is to try to add one more raised bed, and of course the weeds will be obliterated before any other activities can begin.  My favorite veggies to plant are; zucchini, green beans, tomatoes, butternut squash, bell peppers, and jalapenos.  We had a bumper crop of jalapenos last year, and they make for great cooking all year round.  Oh and I will definitely be adding some cucumber plants for making our yummy homemade pickles.

Getting the soil ready for planting is definitely the most time-consuming part of the gardening process.  Over the next two weeks Travel Man and I will be rototilling, digging and raking all of those rotten weeds out-of-the-way.  We have a fairly good-sized composter that will have some pretty magnificent dirt in it right about now.  This premium dirt will get added to one of the existing raised beds to make the soil all healthy and wonderful for the new garden.  Then we’ll finish making all the dirt really pretty and smooth so we can get the planting going.

I’m looking forward to getting this year’s garden going, and getting some dirt under my fingernails.  There’s something so refreshing about digging in the dirt.

Are you planting a garden this year?

The Garden Leaves are Everywhere.

This year in my garden I have zucchini plants, pumpkins, butternut squash, watermelon, and sunflowers.  All of these plants have amazing leaves.  I’ve been a little mesmerized by the different shapes and sizes of the leaves from each plant.  And I don’t know that I ever realized or paid much attention to the distinctive leaves of each plant.

Zucchini leaves are huge.   All of the leaves protect the blossoms in one way or another.  The zucchini leaves are by far the largest of them all.  And isn’t it amazing how the leaves protect the plants, and camoflauge them?  I was picking some zucchini tonight, looked at the same plant twice before I realized there was a really good-sized zucchini laying right on the ground, in plain sight.

Pumpkin leaves are next.  I was also trying to get pictures of the little blossoms.  They spread out in long trails, so make sure you have lots of room to plant and let them grow.  Pumpkins are in the foreground.  The leaves in the background are a patch of sunflowers.

The watermelon leaves have a shape and size all their own.  Very curvy and a little lighter green than the squash family of plants. These leaves trail out into the garden too.  sometimes those trailers have to be redirected so they don’t get tangled up in a fence or a tree.  And look at my little baby watermelon, so cute. This picture was taken about a month ago.  The melon is about 3 or 4 pounds now.   This is the first time I’ve ever grown watermelons.  I’ll let you know how they turn out soon.

Then there’s the butternut leaves.  Very similar to the pumpkins in shape and size.  These leaves trail all over the place.  I have a big area designated just for the bountiful butternuts!

The sunflowers were planted just for Evan. Actually he planted these seeds himself, and has been watching their progress over the summer.  Evan’s method of planting the sunflower seeds was just pushing them into the mud in this little patch we designated for them.

It is still so amazing to me that one little garden can produce so much greenery.  I’ve just been fascinated by all of the leaves and greenery.  The way the squash family of plants,  in particular, have a natural way of camoflauging, or become an umbrella to the vegetables underneath is a wonder all its own.

Did you have you garden this summer?  Do you have a green thumb?  If you only planted one thing in your garden my vote would be for a zucchini plant, For me they have the most amazing leaves of all.  Happy gardening everyone.

We Made Garden Markers

The gardening season is in full swing and I have a few projects that I’ve been meaning to share with all of you.  We are already harvesting our zucchini, and had our first grilled zucchini last week.  Oh yum.  And by the way how is it possibly the 6th of August already?  Didn’t we just celebrate the 4th of July?

I had been wanting to make plant markers for the garden so it would be easy for Evan to know what all of the plants are, and just because I thought it would be cute.  Plus I had seen a lot of ideas for the markers on Martha Stewart‘s crafting page, so I was inspired.  And as a bonus to the budget, I wanted to spend as little money as possible on this project. 

There were these dilapidated stakes from a short border fence we had taken apart at one time or another.  Great these will be my new garden markers.  Next I went into the garage and perused my leftover paint shelf.  There was this great green color just calling my name. I call it my lime sherbet paint.

 So off Evan and I went to paint the sticks.  This was of course during one of our “Camp Grandma” days.  Evan loves to paint so I knew he would be a good helper for this project.  We painted one side of the sticks, let them dry, turned them over and then painted the second side.  This took up most of our morning, and then we went for a swim.  I left the sticks to dry overnight, so we could put the lettering on for the plant names.

The next week at Camp Grandma we painted the plant names on the sticks.  I bought some paint pens (the only thing I had to buy!), as I knew this would make it easier for Evan to help me.  I was really glad I got them because he had a lot of fun being creative with his lettering.

These are my favorites of everything we painted.  I love how Evan got the patriotic theme going.  And he did make one marker that says, “Evan is cool”. 

Here’s the rest of the finished markers, and how they look in the garden.

This was a great, inexpensive project.  It was fun collecting all of the supplies from “stuff” on the shelves around the garage and in the garden shed.   Evan and I had a lot of fun together, and the markers look so great in the garden.  A great summertime project.  Of course Evan had more fun making mud pies.  More on that adventure later.  Happy Monday everyone! 

The Tomatoes are Growing

Hello neighbors.  Yes I’m still here and no I haven’t gone anywhere.  You see Travel Man got home from his second international trip last Saturday, and we’ve been spending some much-needed time together.  He’s only been home 8 days in the last 30, and now he’s home all of this week (anxiously keeping my fingers crossed).  We’ve been having some great meals together, and working in the garden together.  Always a lot to do in the garden.

This year I planted 5 tomatoes plants.  The varieties I purchased from Lowe’s and Home Depot were; Roma, Better Boy, Big Boy, and Celebrity.  A pretty ambitious effort for me, because at the end of last summer I had proclaimed I would only plant two tomato plants this year.  I’m crazy like that, sometimes I just like to go for the gusto!  So I had intended to share these pictures with all of you about a month ago, and somehow they got lost in the “Camp Grandma” menagerie of pictures.

This little contraption is what I am using to water the tomatoes this summer.  Of course in Southern California we have some extreme heat in the summer.  Travel Man found these for me at one of his favorite hardware stores, and I was readily willing to try them.  The spike holds a two liter soda bottle.  It has little holes down each side of the spike to allow the water to flow through to the roots.  With the heat we are having right now I am filling the bottles up twice a day.  In the morning and again in the early evening.  So far so good as the tomatoes are thriving.

This picture of the Roma tomato plant is from a month ago.

 

And this is the same plant today.  I finally added the cages and staking to all of the tomato plants last weekend.  Now it’s just keeping up with the watering and weeding, and waiting for the arrival of the first tomato!!  I cannot wait to have my first BLT with a garden tomato!

We (meaning Travel Man and I) are having an ongoing discussion about the best way to let the tomatoes grow.  My mindset has always been to just put the cages up and let them go to town.  Travel Man’s theory is we should keep them pruned inside of the cages to get a better crop of tomatoes.  I am trying it Travel Man’s way this summer, so I can see how the plants to in the raised bed they are growing in.  And I have to give his idea a chance too.  I like to try to see things from all sides, and not be the “fathead”.  So that being said it brings me to my question for all of you who garden or have gardened in the past.  “To prune the tomatoes, or not prune the tomatoes?”   That is my question to all of you.  Looking forward to hearing some great gardening opinions.  Happy Wednesday to everyone!

  • Subscribe to Blog via Email

    Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 1,176 other subscribers

  • 2018 Stories – Back on the Blog!

    July 2019
    M T W T F S S
    « May    
    1234567
    891011121314
    15161718192021
    22232425262728
    293031  
Skip to toolbar