Whatcha plantin this year?

I ask myself this. What do I want to grow this year in the garden? Well, everything.

One of the reasons we moved to this particular house was for the garden and perfect south facing slope. We are slowly working toward the goal of installing our garden and landscape design. Each year a little more pieces of the puzzle fall into place. Actually, they get dug, compacted, set, concreted and stuccoed into place. It's not easy, but it will get there someday.

Most recently we are building a new fence that is along the actual property line using OZ posts. You can just make out the new fence behind the old grey one in the winter garden photo. It's coming along and we expect to put up some boards and take down the old fence soon.

We are also working on the raised planters. So far, there are a total of 3 raised planters and one water planter near the greenhouse. It is almost filled itself just from the winter rains. We were able to keep it from freezing fully by running the pond pump during our week of below freezing temperatures. It worked great and seems to be doing just great. The raccoons are waiting for us to stock it with fish as evidenced by the little footprints in the general area...

The plan is for a total of 6 stepped planters, five for seed planting and the water/bog one for soggy and wet soil plants.

The following photo is of the garden a couple years ago when it was fully planted. My hopes are to get the whole thing in full growth again and be able to grow most of our vegetables. I don't like going grocery shopping and the produce there is always rather bland. This is why my family has always loved growing tomatoes.

So what am I growing this year? Oh, we got seeds, yes we do.

Lettuce, (including Arugula, looseleaf Redfire, Romaine and a gourmet blend), cauliflower, Sugarpearl organic sweet corn, a variety of sugar snap peas, two versions of early tomato and a San Marzano Italian tomato (which makes a great sauce), beets, radishes, sugar and carving pumpkins, sweet and purple onions, 2 different varieties of carrots, potatos, zucchini, and red peppers.

Then there are the flowers... I must have flowers! I always grow sweet peas and collect the seeds (want some?). Along with several varieties of sunflowers which this year include: Velvet Queen, Tithonia, a polenless Chianti (red), and always a mammoth sunflower because I like 12 foot tall flowers and so do the squirrels. Some of my favorites are the poppies. Not the little california poppies, those drive me mad. I like the big poppies, Iceland, Hungarian breadseed poppies... the kind that have those great seedpods when they have bloomed out. In addition, I have some strawflowers, Nicotiana, a bee friendly mix, Scabiosa, Bunny Tails (cause they are cute), and mamas favorite, Snapdragons.

That outta fill it up.


Pretty_Bamboo said...

Hi Licia,

What do you use on your plants to keep the wormies and buggies away? I would love to someday have a garden...but the bugs get to me (lol).

Licia said...

Actually, we don't use anything on the garden. The first thing we do is plant things that surround the garden that encourage "good" bugs. We try to attract insects that consume the "bad" bugs. We also encourage plenty of birds cause they love to munch on things.

Having a landscape designer helps too cause he has this bug book which explains what each insect is about, it's likes and dislikes... :)

Wormies are good! Actually, I don't even mind the ones that eat the plants because it gets birds into the garden eating them. It does irk me though when I see a squirrel run off with a half ripened strawberry. They seem to only eat a bite of the ripened side and then toss the rest. If you are going to steal, at least hide the evidence!

It's all a balance that nature provides itself and putting chemicals on things only disrupts that balance and really ruins things for the future of the garden. So far, I have let nature take care of the garden. It helps greatly to have the beds off the ground and easy to maintain.

If there are aphids, I shoot them off with a stream of water and smush the sticky ones with a gloved hand. It takes daily maintenance, but it's worth every nibble of the goodies that are produced.