Garden Update: Year 3

I am the most excited about this year’s garden and now that most of it is planted, I feel like I can share it with you!

Lettuce Bud

Lettuce Bud

This year I started my planting from the outside in. Not sure why, but that’s just how it ended up. On the North end of the garden (up against our fence) I planted a row of lettuce mix seeds. I put these in the ground a little late, but they seem to be budding just fine!

My tiny pea plant

My tiny pea plant

 

Next to that I have my pea plants. I did pole beans and peas my first year and they EXPLODED with growth and beans, but died very early in the season. This time I am trying a bush pea. They are cute little buds at the moment.

Yellow Wax Bean

Yellow Wax Bean

My next row makes me feel lazy. I bought two types of bean plants for this row. A green bean and a yellow wax bean. I was worried it was too late to grow them by seed. (It probably wasn’t, but oh well)

Squash

Squash

My next section (it’s not really a row) is my squash/watermelon section. I have two squash, two zucchini and will have two small watermelon plants in this section. (I’m letting the plants grow a little more before I plant them) It takes up a good part of the garden, but I am probably most excited about this! I have never grow watermelons before!

Space.
(Literally, there is a blank space in my garden in the middle. It is just waiting for my creative muse to take over)

Next I have my okra. It is fun to grow Okra in Texas because it is SO EASY and grows very fast. It is also a very high yielding plant.

Strawberry Plant

Strawberry Plant

My kids (and myself included) are very excited about the next row, STRAWBERRIES! This is the first year I have grown strawberries and we already have 8 or more strawberries growing!

IMG_3047

My next row is peppers. I love to have a good variety of peppers. This year I have a green pepper, a red pepper, a Serrano pepper, an Anaheim pepper and a jalapeno pepper.

My first tomatoes of the season

My first tomatoes of the season

The last row in the garden is my beloved tomato plants. These are my favorite because there are very few things in this world that are better than a tomato fresh from the garden. This year I am trying a new type called a Lemon Drop. It is a yellow-green tie-dye colored tomato. I also have Roma, Sweet 100, Cherry and Yellow Pear (which is my favorite).

I am hoping to add a little more in the middle of my garden, but not sure what to plant yet. I really hope my garden does well this year. It is a lot of hard work, but it is definitely a labor of love (plus everything tastes better right out of the garden)

I also have my first ever herb garden! I have spearmint, peppermint, oregano (all in containers) parsley, basil, cilantro, sage, thyme, lavender, lemon verbena, and lemongrass. I am hoping to be able to not only use them for cooking, but use them in some of my homemade products!

My herb garden

My herb garden

 

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Garden Season is Here!

I am sorry I have been neglecting my blog for the past week or so, but spring has arrived in Texas and I can’t help but be outside ALL THE TIME! I feel like I just came out of hibernation! Our family is so excited about spring we spent the entire weekend outside! Saturday was the backyard and Sunday was the front yard. Neither are finished, but they are both looking so much better!

If you know anything about me, you know I love gardens, and guess what?! It’s garden season (I’m not yet a year round gardener) and I couldn’t be happier! We have this wonderful flat spot in our yard where the previous owner had an above ground pool. When we viewed the house I swear that spot was yelling “Garden! Garden!” (You know, “If you build it, they will come” type of thing.) So, long story short, the yard was perfect, the house was perfect and here we are about to start our third garden season in this house (Yes, I measure time in our house by garden years! Don’t judge!)

Here is our plot of land before we put the garden. If this doesn't scream garden, I don't know what would!

Here is our plot of land before we put the garden in. If this doesn’t scream garden, I don’t know what would!

The first year we had a garden we dug out the ground a little to even the ground, put a layer of cinder blocks around the outside, and put chicken wire around the outside to keep the rabbits and our dog out. We decided to use only half of the area that the pool was on to start with. This was an 8-foot by 16-foot garden. When we got done, we had a beautiful, but simple and cheap garden, and it was the perfect size.

Here is what my garden looked like the first year. It was beautiful! My favorite part was the marigolds around the edges!

Here is what my garden looked like the first year. It was beautiful! My favorite part was the marigolds around the edges!

Our garden did really well the first year! We got lots of tomatoes, quite a few squash, lots of peas and enough jalapenos to feed a small army! The marigolds on the outside didn’t last as long as I would have hoped (Darn that sizzling Texas heat!) but they were pretty while they lasted.

Garden Year 2 we did some modifications and upgrades. We removed the stones in the middle of the garden. Less stones mean more plants! (YAY!) We also removed the pathetic looking chicken wire fence and built an actual fence. I was seriously giddy when the fence building was happening!

Here is the new fence and awesome gate my husband added for our garden's second year.

Here is the new fence and awesome gate my husband added for our garden’s second year.

We later added 2×4 boards to connect the posts together. We noticed that the 2×4’s really added to the strength of the fence. Plus, I thought it looked really cute! Gardening Year 2 was difficult. I was pregnant with Baby G and pretty much felt awful the entire pregnancy. When I did have good days, I was out in the garden, for sure!

Here's early in the season  in year two. As you can see, we ran out of 2x4's and our plants are just tiny seedlings.

Here’s early in the season in year two. As you can see, we ran out of 2×4’s and our plants are just tiny seedlings.

I wasn’t able to take care of my garden last year like I wanted to, but it still produced quite a bit! We had tomatoes coming out of our ears and giant zucchini! Our peppers didn’t do as well last year which was kinda a bummer because I totally had jalapeno pregnancy cravings!

Here is my oldest holding our HUGE prized (we wish) zucchini. All our zucchini came out huge! (and very delicious!)

Here is my oldest holding our HUGE prized (we wish) zucchini. All our zucchini came out huge! (and very delicious!)

Basically I cannot wait to get my plants in the ground and start growing this year’s garden! I feel like I need to make up for last year when I let the garden grow becasuse I was so pregnant and tired. This year will be bigger and better than ever! ¬†Garden Year 3, here I come!

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