Tuesday, June 12, 2007

How Does My Garden Grow?

We still have not finished planting our garden.  We need to buy tomato and pepper plants today or tomorrow and get them in the garden before it's too late.

But our zucchini is growing well, and some of our spaghetti squash.  Many of the spaghetti squash seeds didn't come up, but we have volunteer cantaloupe in their place.  Oops!  Someone needs to be more careful where they toss the cantaloupe seeds and skins.

We had another garden "oopsie" this Spring when we found a plant in the backyard that we thought was a volunteer cantaloupe.  (We routinely dump vegetable and fruit scraps onto the garden area, since we don't have a compost bin, and we assumed a seed had been moved by a bird or something into the yard.)  We moved this plant into the middle of the garden, only to discover it's a holly hock!  

We did this once before.  The rental house next to us was empty and it had plants coming up in an old garden spot.  We assumed volunteer melon of some sort and moved them to our garden, only to discover many weeks and head scratches later that it was holly hock!  We moved that holly hock to another place in our yard the next year, but it didn't live for more than two years.  I guess the plants we found this year were some long-lost babies of our dead holly hocks.  So once again, we have a holly hock in the middle of our garden.  I wonder what color it will be when it blooms.  I guess we'll move it next Spring again.

I also had planted chamomile and lavender along the edge of the garden.  The chamomile starts shriveled up and died.  The lavender hasn't died, but it doesn't seem to be flourishing, either.  I don't think I'll try starting seeds indoor again.  I lost most of my starts before we ever moved them outside.  It was a fun process to watch, but not very successful.

We have no more flowers blooming in our front yard or front flower beds.  The only blooms are in my porch pots.  We have red begonia in a hanging pot, and we have cranberry impatiens and blue ageratum in a large pot on the porch.  They're thriving, and brightening up the front yard.  I'm starting to think I should just put annuals in pots in my front flower bed every year.   The neighborhood cats could still "go" around the flower pots, but my flowers would be safe IN the pots.  I'd have to collect more pots, though.

My back yard has a few bedraggled roses. One bush I thought was dead actually has 2 light yellow roses on it today.   I need to pull up the mint that has overtaken my rose bed.  That was not my brightest move ever, planting mint there.  My rose bed needs some TLC. 

Our purple butterfly bushes are growing, but slowly this year.  The new bush we planted has two blooms about to open, but our old giant bush isn't blooming yet.  It usually reaches 7 feet tall, but it's only knee high at the moment. 

My wildflower bed has mostly dwindled out.  There are only a few straggling flowers left in it, amid lots of weeds.  I need to buy another seed packet or two to add to it next year.  The problem with a wildflower bed is you can't tell the flowers from the weeds until they're really tall and either blooming, or not blooming. 

But my orange day lilies are once again thriving.  They line the fence and shed, and make me smile every time I see their bright exuberant color.  I'm so thankful for them, since I have such bad luck with my front flower bed.  We've talked about transplanting some of them to the front flower bed, but we still have hopes of saving the irises planted there, and we know the day lilies would over run the irises.

And that's how my garden grows.  Not very well, but we keep trying.

When Steve and some of the children were at the homestead a couple weeks ago, they took pictures of the flowers blooming there for me.  Lilies near the front door, irises scattered around, columbine, gas plant, and some other pink flower.  By the time I go back there, they'll be gone, but at least I saw pictures.  And someday we'll be living there to watch them bloom, and die, every year.


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