Seems like years ago though it wasn’t that long that I wrote about the benefits of gardening. I still feel that way and especially so this year if anything. I have been kind of checking out recently and I think it is a call to get back to “me” or my passions as some people say.
I’ve quit a lot of things I was involved with that my heart isn’t really into. Maybe I’ll go back at some point but for now I need to cut the distractions I have going on.
My first step is focusing on my garden!
I feel really good when I’m able to properly maintain my garden, and after a few years I feel like I’m starting to get the hang of it. Last year borage ended up kind of taking over when I thought the starts were melons and this year I am glad I know better! Borage does an awesome job attracting bees though so I do think I will be strategically planting some.
It started about two weeks or so ago, I have been weeding slowly and steadily and planted along my southern east facing wall some lavender and lots of peas and strawberries along with the roses, iris’, rosemary, and jasmine that is there. At the south end I have a new lilac planted too, I bought two and haven’t decided where to put the other larger one yet.
My northern east facing wall has more blueberries now. Last year we had but one little bush and since then I learned they really benefit from being able to cross breed a bit with other varieties so I added two, one is a half full (or is it half tall?) bush that will only get 2-3 feet high if I’m remembering right, the other is a tall one, so can get up to seven feet tall! I also planted a tree over there. I’m not sure what kind it is, I got it from someone who was clearing out their yard. When she gave me the young tree it was after I was oohing and aahing over the smell of her big tree, one that she didn’t know the breed of but ‘heard’ it’s related to citrus if I’m remembering right. It had lots of small white/yellowish flowers and I loved the smell…mine is tiny so hasn’t flowered but I am hoping it will! It has been in a pot since I got it last year so we will see if it takes. I also planted a dwarf plum tree I got from McLendons called a “Peach Plum” I don’t think it is a hybrid of peaches and pairs but who knows! I think it just references the picture which is of a pretty yellow plum.
In our square foot garden we still have some kale growing from last year which we are harvesting and keeping around and two chards. We also have garlic sprouting which is cool because I never harvested last year because I couldn’t tell where it went! I’ll mark where it is this year and harvest in July as I’ve seen recently in a publication a local farmer does. I’m letting one mint plant stay in there as well, which I might not do next year as based on the number of starts I see coming from it the plant is pretty invasive! I planted some starts I bought for Pad Choi (figure it’s same as Bok Choy?) and some Chard along the struggling chard from last year that is still going.
Yesterday I started lots of plants that I intend to plant in the squarefoot and in a container herb garden…maybe some I’ll plant in a container AND in the garden to see which fares better. I started: Roma Tomatoes, Basil, Thai Basil, Oregano, Coriander (my favorite!), Marigolds, Cosmos, Summer Squash and also some Cucumbers. I am being a lot more careful with my starts this year and marking them MUCH better. Last year I just wrote in a journal which were which and had about 100 containers to keep track of, it got a little crazy!! This time I have 2 seeds in each thing, and I WILL pinch the smaller of the two (last year I felt like that was too mean and didn’t do it) or I will split them and put them in their own containers. One complication for the seed starts is that we have cats now, so far they are ignoring them but I am keeping a careful eye on them.
Outside along the easement I also scattered lots and lots of wildflower seeds…who knows if they’ll grow as the cashier didn’t know if they were for this region (no more shopping at big chain superstore nursery’s) but I couldn’t resist when it said it attracted humming birds and butterflies. Plus I figure I can never have too many beautiful flowers for the girls to go pick whenever they want to.
Still to figure out where to plant are my raspberry start (which I got from my dad) and also a cherry tree (includes about five varieties grafted together that I am excited about) both of which are in pots at the moment. Kenzie really wanted cherries so I went for it because who doesn’t love cherries. I’m lucky to have places to choose from but I want to be smart about where the shade from what will someday be pretty big trees will land.
The Peas, Strawberries, and Blueberries all seem to be doing really well which I love, I have more areas to clear and plant stuff so I’m staying pretty busy. Prices are so good on the fruit trees I’m having a hard time holding back…we do have a nice big back yard but we are hoping to do a little landscaping before planting trees….I might have to just go for it though. The thought of having lots of lovely fruit trees and plants that our kids can grow up eating from is absolutely heavenly, and it feels like it is the way it should be. I keep visualizing myself having the baby and sitting with it outside while Kenzie and Hazel happily munch the strawberries and peas in particular.