Last year was not the best year for my garden. I battled hauling in water to the homestead and an onslaught of moles. This year I expect a 180-degree transformation. The well is pumping out crisp clean water and I finally finished putting raised beds in my garden. As all the sprouts begin to fill the area I am struck by aw as I watch my labor of sowing display just a portion of what I will reap in the coming harvests.
These raised beds have a hardware cloth bottom that will keep the moles from digging under my plants and eating them from the roots up. They are filled with a 50/50 mix of rabbit manure and organic garden soil and the plants are loving it! The honey bees are also enjoying the garden area as it makes water highly accessible for them to cool the hive down as we approach daily highs in the mid-eighties.
I placed a small raised bed with a variety of herbs at the lower part of the garden so that they would have a moderately cool and shady area. I added some blueberry bushes in pots on each end. And in one of the larger beds, I placed my sun-loving tomatoes and peppers.
This space on my homestead has become one of many of my favorite places to sit back and relax with a cold beer or fresh cup of coffee. I have put a lot of time and effort into the garden space and it brings me so much joy to see it coming to life. There is something to be said about working hard with your hands. I hope one day this hard work becomes the only job I need.
One of my aspirations for my garden has been to get a fig tree. The reason behind this is that our local “Meat Shop” sells this amazing goat cheese with fig, slivered almonds and honey drizzled over it that I am completely addicted to, I could eat an entire tub of it for lunch, dinner, and breakfast the next morning and still want it the next day. If you have been following this blog for any amount of time you will know that I have dairy goats and plan to make my own cheese, yogurts, and butter from their milk next year. Add the handful of beehives we have and you are almost to this cheese magic! So now that I have a fig tree all I need to make this delightful cheese is an almond tree or two. *Doing a happy goat cheese and fig dance*
So what are you growing this year? What zone are you in and what have you had the best luck with in the past? Do you consider yourself a brown or a green thumb?
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I changed gardens this year (moved) so had to have a late and quick start to our shortest growing season (summer.) I planted out transplants of yellow crookneck, white patty pan, different cherry tomatoes (big ones tend to die in our summer heat), a few spicy pepper varieties, a few sweet peppers, okra, melon, cucumber, and sweet potatoes. For seeds I tried my luck with late bush beans, radishes, and a whole lot of cowpeas.
I think I’m in 8b but here in Central Texas the frost dates don’t matter as much as the summer highs and the seasonal rains. Our “dead of winter, nothing grows” season is July and August unless you have some shade or wasteful amounts of water, and even then you need some luck.
I think I’m a mischievous thumb. 😉
Mischievous thumb indeed! I’m technically a 6a due to my altitude. We have extremely hot summers as well and tend to see a lot of forest fires because of it. Your mention of wasteful amounts of water ring true here too.
I’m looking forward to seeing if my cotton make it as I hear they love heat (won’t be enough to spin but I’d like to use it for wreath making and bouquets). Most of the garden shape and foundation were here when I bought this beautiful homestead. So I’m learning the ropes as I try to figure out the sun exposer amounts for each season, living backed up against a rock hillside makes things very interesting. I’m still debating where to plant my loofa starts; they have the potential to spread 30 feet. Did I mention there are 10 of them thriving….? Face palm.
And now I’m going into the deep google webs to find out what exactly cowpeas are. Quite intrigued!
Thanks for Sharing! I hope to learn more from you.
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Perhaps with your upcoming glut of loofah you’ll be able to stock up for a few years and use that growing space for another adventure next season!
If you succeed in cotton, it might be fun to try peanuts. They seem to like similar environments.
Actually, I did seriously contemplate peanuts this year but decided on more potatoes instead. I think I might try a peanut tower if the cotton does well as you mentioned!
Crossing my fingers for a loofa stash! I’m thinking bird house squash in the future too for yarn bowls. 🤔😍