July 16

Just a quick tour through some of the garden.

The pineapple sage is getting huge! It really does smell like pineapple. Not sure what I’ll do with it, but it’s a nice splash of color in the bed and sometimes that’s good enough.
The Limelight Hydrangea is covered in blooms now. 


Tomatillos and peppers going strong! 
The broccoli and Brussels sprouts are much happier now that they’ve had an infusion of composted manure and new soil. 
These new tomatoes are growing fast. Picked the first green beans today too.
The tomato jungle continues to get more tomatoes and more jungle like.
Neil is 6’4″. He’s standing on that bag, which puts at essentially the same level of the soil in the bed. That tomato is a good 5″ taller than him although it’s hard to tell in the photo. I’m going to have to figure out a way to extend the stakes or just let it flop over.
Spaghetti squash! 
The acorn squash is finally growing too. 
This trellis that Neil built for me is so awesome for this! 
More tassels are coming out, peppers are growing and the lilacs are putting out leaves again! 
That’s going to taste so good! 



July 9

Spent more time sweating in the garden today. I ripped out the Romaine and lettuce that was had gone to seed, tilled the soil, and added composted manure (especially aromatic when it’s 90°) and soil. I had a few tomato seedlings in Red Solo cups (you’re welcome for putting that song in your head) so I planted five of them in there. I didn’t even bother checking if it was bad to plant tomatoes by broccoli and Brussels sprouts. Even if they only produce 50% of normal it will be a win. I finished the drip irrigation in the bed too.

This is what happens when I snap a quick photo and don’t look at my phone before moving on. Anyway, the leaves are from the river birch trees. Every spring it’s so wet that they put on more leaves than they can sustain in the dry summer so then they fall off. It’s no big deal and I figure it will compost the beds they fall into. 

I staked another bunch of peppers plants that needed it. I ran out of stakes and bamboo so I’ll have to make another trip to the garden center tomorrow. Oh darn. I knew this heat and humidity would make the peppers happy. Lots of new ones have appeared in the last day.

California Wonder bell pepper. 
More hot banana peppers. I don’t even know what to do with these. From the looks of the four plants, I’m going to have 35-40 in the first harvest. Any suggestions? 
Caribbean Red Hots (Habanero). These come in at about 450 Scovilles, putting them in the top 10-15 depending on the list. For comparison, jalapenos are 2,000-8,000 Scovilles. 
The tag on these at the nursery said poblanos, which we love. Unfortunately, it looks like these were mislabeled. Pretty sure these are cayenne peppers. 
I planted four of them and they’re all covered in peppers. Guess I’ll be drying and grinding a lot of these babies in a couple of months. Plus side, I won’t have to buy cayenne pepper at the store for a year or two. 
The tomatillos are finally setting fruit too. 
Look at those baby green beans. Can’t wait for them to get bigger! I am not sure which I love more, fresh green beans or fresh tomatoes. 
Those little leaves are the start of an ear of corn!

Thanks for stopping by. I can see that I’ve had visitors even if no one ever comments. 😉

July 8

The temperature cooled off just slightly so I spent quite a bit of time in the garden today.

Neil and Alex loved with the wild blueberries we picked in Minnesota while we were on the houseboat so we decided to try growing our own. Andy helped me dig out the sod so I could plant them today. I just need to get some mulch to put around them.

I left the tags on the bushes so I can’t remember what the varieties are. 

I am utterly fascinated with the way the spaghetti squash grows. Those tendrils start out sticking straight out and they always find a way to wrap around something to hold on. It’s amazing. Makes me want to set up a time lapse camera just to see it happen.

That literally happened between 2 pm and 8 pm today, It wasn’t attached at all before that. On the left, the blossom with the future squash right below it. There have been a lot of male blossoms but this is the first female. 
You can see the bit of garden tape at the bottom of the photo. The vine was just above that when I attached it on Thursday morning. It’s now more than 18″ longer. 

I’ve been working on plans to install sprinklers for at least part of the garden to cut down on the the time it takes me to water everyday. I’m also hoping it cuts down on the water bill, which is running about $250 a month now. I didn’t want to spend a fortune on customized lines so I’m using soaker hoses in the raised beds. These will be connected together with a solid hose between each bed. I even learned how to cut hoses to the exact size and add new connectors at the end so they’re truly customized.

One of the raised beds with drip hose installed. Four more to go!

For the plants on shelves, I found a drip system that for a decent price on Amazon. Neil helped me cut all of the hose and attach individual fittings going into each pot this afternoon and it works like a charm!

I planted the basil in the front today. Can’t wait to make pesto! 

The patio is wet from the hose, not because they’re leaking. 🙂


July 7

It’s been hot and humid all week and the garden has exploded. The tomatoes and peppers especially love it. It takes me a good hour to water every day but it’s worth it to see it grow like this.

Nasturium are such happy little flowers.
So many hot banana peppers. 
See what I mean about growing? 
The first bloom on the Limelight hydrangea. 
A couple of the tomatoes are now taller than me. I need to figure out a way to keep staking them higher. 
I guess the spaghetti squash loves the heat too! That tall vine grew almost a foot in two days. 
Lots of Cajun Belles growing now.
The ferns I bought at the local garden sale seem to love the north side of the house. This spot doesn’t get any direct sun at all so they’re loving it there. 
Tassels are starting to form on the sweet corn!
Perfect weather for corn too. You can’t see it but the lilacs have started pushing out tiny leaves now. 
Carolina Reaper peppers even look wicked when they’re green. 
Anaheim peppers. These are new to me so not sure what I’m doing with them yet.
I finally staked all of the tall peppers so they won’t fall over. The basil on each side are turning into bushes. I should probably harvest some. 



June 30

Squee! First tomatoes. Plus a big bite of broccoli and a wee Cajun Belle pepper.
Growing, growing, growing. 
Green beans and carrots.
Tomato jungle. 
Just planted these Shasta daisies this summer. Purchased at the Master Gardeners sale.
Can’t remember what these are. My friend Mary gave them to me from her garden last year. 
Oh those sad looking lilacs. The corn is definitely going to be knee high by the 4th of July. 

June 26

Peppers doing their thing. Basil in the front is getting big.
I like this little bed, but it’s a classic case of throwing plants in and not planing ahead for their growth. I’m going to move some things next year. 
Nasturium. I know it’s edible (flowers and leaves) but for some reason I can’t bring myself to try it. I just grow them because they’re pretty. 
Green beans, carrots and the new tomatoes.
The tomatoes are huge.
It’s like a tomato jungle in there. 
Getting close! 
Spaghetti squash is starting to grow up the trellis. 
I need to weed this corner, but look at that trumpet vine. It’s just as big on the other sides of the fence. You’d never know I cut it back to the ground last spring. 
Peppers and corn and very sad looking Miss Kim lilacs. They had gotten way to big so we cut them back hard. Theoretically, they should push out new growth on the inside. If not, we’ll rip them out next spring. 
Peppers and tomatillos. I feel like everything is really late even though I know it’s not. I guess I’m just impatient. 
The asparagus continues to put out new shoots. Since I had no idea how it grew, it’s a fun spot to follow in the garden. 

June 18

Sometimes the nerd in me thinks it would be amazing to set up a time lapse camera on the veggies so I can literally see them grow so fast. 
Dug up the strawberries because they were old and not producing as much. Replaced them with more tomatoes because why the hell not? 🙂 

June 12

I can’t believe how much they’ve grown.
Ooohhh. They’re getting big!
I suspect I’m going to regret the spacing and staking on this bed. 
These get a little less sun so it will be interesting to see how that affects them.
Lots of blossoms! 
Wee Brussels sprouts.
More tomatoes still to plant.
Romaine going strong! We’ve been eating off of them. 
Broccoli is growing slowly this year.
The iceberg is growing. Amazing how much greener is is when it’s not grown in a hothouse. 
More asparagus continues to come up. 
This spot gets sun 10+ hours a day, which the peppers should love.


Crazy herb bed.
The Scorpion Red Hots doubled in size while we were out of town for the weekend. 
Not sure this spot gets enough sun  because the maple tree has grown so much. 
Sweet corn! 
Peas in a Pot. 

Front of the House

Kalanchoe. I bought this because it looked funky.


I went with something totally different for the porch planters this year. Black and cream Wave petunias, Celosia and sweet potato vine. The welcome basket in the background was a gift from the staff at Long Beach. They’ve been a big part of our lives for the past 12 years. It’s hard to believe we won’t have a kid there next year.
That purple plant in the middle is another kind of sweet potato vine. I’ve never seen one that color before.
Sweet Rylee picked this out for me on her last day with me.