Archive for Flowers

A Veggie Garden Update 05-21-08

I know I haven’t updated in awhile but we’ve been completely busy. We actually have some good news: we’re going to be home owners. We’re in escrow and so excited about the possibilities of being a homeowner. we can’t believe it!!! Here’s a picture of our new garden area:

Garden View A

Garden View B

So, my garden has experienced a lot of thinning due to us moving in only a short 20 days. I am just hoping I can get some ripe tomatoes by then so I can save seeds. This year, I am growing a variety of tomatoes that I wanted to collect seeds. Tomatoes that I’m not taking with me include: black cherry, red and gold, and fireball tomato. Those already have little green fruits on them so I can hopefully get them to ripe so I can get seeds from them. Luckily, I had a feeling that we would buy a house before summer’s end so I put most of my plants in pots. I still have tons of Swiss chard plants ready to be harvested and cooked. I cook my swiss chard simply with some olive oil, lemon, and garlic.

Swiss Chard 118 days 04-17-08

Let’s see…it looks like everything is growing nicely except when we had a couple of days that were in the 100s. During this time, a lot of my plants got completely sunburnt. My mint had burnt leaves and so did my tomatoes. Poor things didn’t know it was going to be so hot. I’ve also had some problems with scale. I just spray them with my organic pesticide I made. It only takes a day before they’re dead! All my herbs are coming along. The tomatoes are blooming and fruiting nicely. I also noticed I have some peppers that are blooming. I’m keeping them in individual pots so I can plant them in our new place.

The hydrangeas are blooming. They’re blooming a gorgeous pale pink. When I first got this plant from my husband, it was purple and now it’s pink. I guess the fertilizer I use changed the blooms to pink. I’ve heard acidity levels can affect blooms. Well, I guess that’s all for now. I promise to to try to update more. Happy gardening everyone.

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Garden times…

Squash seedlings (click to enlarge)

Yesterday, I repotted my little African violets into bigger pots and I planted more bean seeds but instead of in pots, I direct seeded them into the ground. I started some top crop beans and also some Kentucky wonder beans.I also planted more watermelon radish and sunflower (a Walmart variety) seedlings in the ground

Hyacinth bulbs (click to enlarge)

My garden is filling in nicely. I have pea flowers blooming with tiny little pea pods forming, geranium flowers blooming, bulbs poking their head out, lettuce getting fuller and radishes getting nice and round. I also planted my asparagus peas into a square I had empty. I noticed that I had 6 more squares empty. Any suggestions?

I brought some of my extra tomato, pepper, and zucchini seedlings to work today. However, they took a beating in my bike basket and some dirt shook off but all in all, they had a great ride with me to work. My coworkers are appreciative of the green presents. The peppers were of an unknown variety. I had to label them “a” and “b” because I forgot to label the peat pellets when I planted the seeds. oh well. We’ll soon find out what they are if and when they fruit.

Lately, to conserve energy and mostly gas money, I’ve been using my new bike. I bike to work and mostly anywhere around town that’s 2 miles from where I live. It only takes 10 minutes to bike 2 miles including stop signs and traffic lights and plus you get some exercise. I rationalize bike riding as me trying to help save the environmnt. hehe. Yesterday, I biked to my local Rite-Aid and found some good deals on herb seedlings. I got some English thyme and sage for $1.50 a piece. They also had some rosemary and cilantro for sale but I already purchased some rosemary at Target earlier this season. I also got some seeds here. They were only 10 for $1.00 so I got 10. I got some cauliflower, marigolds, zinnias, annual cut flower mix, and beans. I put some beans in between some wet towels to see if they germinate and some of the seeds, I plan on sending to my seed-trade partner this month.

Well I guess that’s all for now. Happy gardening everyone!

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Herb Seedlings Update 03-16-08

Thyme 40 days (click to enlarge)

Catnip 40 days (click to enlarge)

Chervil 13 days (click to enlarge)

Lemon Balm 40 days (click to enlarge)

Cilantro 12 days (click to enlarge)

Cilantro 12 days (click to enlarge)

As promise from the previous post, I’m posting pictures of my herbs. They’ve grown so well!
Today, I spent a long day in the garden. It was extremely windy today and I got a lot of dust and dirt in my eyes but I continued on.

I planted more swiss chard seedlings, morning glory, hollyhocks, and some butterfly orchid seedlings into the ground today. I also set up a string trellis and oh boy was this a bad idea in a wind storm. I spent a good ten minutes untangling the mess.

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Great Weather!

Lemon Basil at 8 Days

Thai Basil at 8 days

The weather has been very spring-like with temps in the high 60s and low 70s. I’m a little hesitant with how great the weather is. I’m afraid that next week, we’ll have lots of rain and thunderstorms. I guess you can’t live your life worrying all the time so I continue my gardening adventures but with a critical eye on the weather.

On Friday, I started some more seeds that include: marigolds-safari mix and French double mixed, edamame, sunflower-tall variety, sugar snap peas, nasturtiums, morning glory-crimson rambler, and eggplant-black long variety. I really hope they sprout especially the nasturtiums. I planted some nasturtiums last week and they haven’t sprouted at all. I plan on planting them with my tomatoes to detract pests from getting to my precious tomatoes.

In part of my garden, that only gets partial sun in the early/late morning so this year, I plan on growing some cool weather veggies in that area. It’s around 2′ by 5′ so I want to grow lettuces with successive plantings throughout the season, radishes (watermelon and cherry belle variety), bok choi, cabbage, swiss chard, peas, leeks, mint, cilantro, lemon balm, thyme and beans.

I noticed that I have sprouts on the hyacinths I planted on March 3rd, sunflowers, radish, and great lakes lettuce I planted last week. I also saw that my spaghetti squash seeds and cucumber straight 8s have sprouted (it took them 14 days to sprout! eek). I might have to start more cucumber seeds tonight. I want a lot of cucumbers this year. Last year, I only got 1, yummy and delicious cucumber but this year I want at least more than 1.

None of my zucchinis or squash seeds have sprouted either. Note to self: start more tonight and keep them inside. Speaking of failures, I have no success on the beans I planted outside 18 days ago. I guess I’ll have to start them inside. It looks like I have a lot of seed starting tonight (cucumbers, squash, zucchini, and beans). Oh the joys of gardening!

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Happy gardening everyone!

Next up: an update on my herb seedlings! eek. They’re doing so well…

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Starting More Seedlings 03-04-08

Plants from our wedding. These are cyclamens (click on image for larger picture)
On the first of March, I was busily planting seeds. I planted a variety of basils that include lemon basil, Thai basil, sweet basil, and a large leaf variety. I started my cucumbers (straight 8) and squash (black zucchini, spaghetti, early prolific) together in small cups. I set this tray outside so they can germinate under the nice sun. I also started some oriental poppies and Shirley red poppies. Some poppies I planted earlier this week have already sprouted and doing very well. To end the first day of March, I started some nasturtiums (9 pellets) and 4 o clocks (6 pellets)

I started bulbs yesterday night (03-03). I started some tulips, grape hyacinths, narcissus ice-follies, and muscari bulbs.

Cabbage Early Golden Acres Seedling at 40 days (click on image for larger picture)

My seedlings are doing well except for a bout of aphids. I found some aphids on my African violet and they somehow migrated to my little seedlings. I cleaned them with alcohol and soap/water mixture. The soap and alcohol does something to the aphids. Maybe suffocates them. Anyways, it worked so I was happy. I plan on transplanting my tomato seedlings into bigger pots tomorrow or Thursday and set them out under the sun for a little bit or until it rains (which is estimated to be on Sunday into Monday). We hope not but we’ll see.
Today, I planted some watermelon radish, nasturtiums, great lakes lettuce, sunflowers, Pinocchio pepper, 4 o’ clocks, daisy bush and marigold seeds. I am interested in seeing the watermelon radish grow. I hope it does well!

Happy gardening everyone!

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Garden Update 02-28-08

Pretty African Violet

I got this pretty AV awhile ago at Lowes. It was a pathetic little thing at Lowes. It was discounted to $1.00. All it needed was a little TLC. I placed it under my grow lights and it’s done really well as yal can see.

Today, I planted more peas to my garden. They were sugar snap peas. I hope to have lots this season. I love cooking with snap peas because there’s no shelling involved and you can eat the whole thing including the pod. It’s great in stir fry, orzo, and just raw. I hope they do well with no inoculant. I’ve never tried innoculants before but I wonder if it would give me a bigger crop. Anywho, I’ve always been satisfied with the crop I get. Maybe next year I’ll get some innoculant.

The coleus outside are doing well. No losses yet although, I did have to get rid of a cat that wondered into my garden. They are so annoying. I have gates up but they still manage to get in. I just wish they would leave my garden alone! Urgh. Darn cats. As I was doing some garden clean up, I noticed a tray of lettuce seedlings I had neglected. They had blown over a couple of weeks ago and were damaged by the storm. I had propped them up and forgot them. Some were doing surprisingly well. I transplanted about 4-5 lettuce seedlings in a part of my garden that gets part sun/part shade. I put one seedling in a pot to see how well it does in a container compared to the dirt. We’ll see.

There’s no sproutage on any of my Chinese Houses or Chinese Lanterns. I grew Chinese Lanterns last year and they didn’t take this long to sprout. It’s the weirdest thing. I wonder what’s going on! It might be that it needs warmer temperatures to sprout and since I have my fan on the seedlings, its probably making it cooler and harder for them to sprout. I’ll give the fan a rest in the next couple of days to give them a chance. We’ll see.

I noticed that my garlic was getting thicker at the soil line. I dug done a little and saw a new clove. I hope they’ll do well considering they were in containers. I planted them in November and they saw it takes 9 months for them to form bulbs so I have 5 months to go. Here’s hoping.

I have my first flower of 2008. It was an African daisy from my wedding. There were 4-5 blooms. I’m going to wait until they get bigger before I cut them and put them in a vase on my dining room table. I also saw that there’s some new growth on my hydrangea plant too. I thought I had killed this this winter. I’m so glad I didn’t. There were also some flower buds on my geranium. I can’t wait for it to bloom and try collecting seeds from this one. It flowers a magnificent pink.

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Garden Update 02-27-08

Roma, Jelly Bean, Black Cherry and Brown Berry Tomato Seedlings at 23 days
(click on image for larger pic)

Gardeners Delight Tomato Seedling 23 days (click on image for larger pic)

Red/Gold Currant and Lady Bug Hybrid at 23 days (click on image for larger pic)

The weather here has been very nice with temperatures in the mid 60s and tomorrow, we’ll experience our first 70 degree temperature. I wish it could stay this way forever. I just checked my seedlings I started early this month and found some peat pellets bare with no seedlings. I quickly remedied that by adding the same seeds of the bare pellet’s brothers and sisters. I only had 1 eggplant seedling and I had originally planted 8 seeds so I added additional seeds to the bare pellets. I also started some Numex Big Jim peppers and some more patio tomato peppers today. I hope they’ll sprout and be ready by next month. Here’s hoping.

On Sunday, I started some more herb and flower seeds. I started some pink nicotianas I got from a round robin exchange. I love being apart of this group. It’s like your birthday every month. You get new gardening presents from a different person every month. This month, I got a nice package that had so many different varieties of seeds ranging from coleus to nicotiana and included in the package was some plant labels. I, too, send stuff to other people as well. It works out well. I send my left over seeds to someone who might use them. It works out really well. Anyway, forgive the side track. I also planted the following:

  • Calendula (saved seeds)
  • Cosmos
  • Dill
  • Shoofly
  • Chinese Lanterns
  • Chinese Houses
  • Shirley Poppies

Coleus Seedlings

Today, I also set out my precious coleus seedlings to get them used to outside temps which is lovely! I hope they’ll be fine out there. I might cover them tonight but the meteorologist predicts temperatures tonight will be in the mid 40s so I think they’ll be fine tonight. On my lunch break, I planted my Bok choi, Swiss chard, and cabbage seedlings. I always water newly set seedlings with a combination of fish fertilizer and water so they get an added extra boost. I covered them with pots since it was the middle of the day and I didn’t want them to shrivel up and die. I’ll uncover them tomorrow morning so they can get a full day of sunshine. I can’t believe it’s almost Spring. Slowly, my garden will get filled with lovely veggies and flowers. I can’t wait! In a couple of days I’ll be starting my squash, cucumber, sunflowers, and basil seeds. Yesterday, I started some peas and beans too. Is it spring yet? Eek…Happy gardening everyone!

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