My Garden!!

You should see my garden right now!

Seriously! I almost look like a real gardener! Which is kind of funny because my husband actually did most of it!

My husband is an engineer. His mind continually thinks of ways to do things faster and better. It’s just who he is.  He has been researching and scheming for years to find ways to make gardening easier and more productive.

If you’ve hung out here for awhile – you might remember some of the other garden ideas we’ve tried over the years. None of which worked out. So when he told me that he had found a new idea for the garden, I might have rolled my eyes just a little. But because I love him and because he was willing to help out, I gave in.

And I’m very glad I did!

Just look at my garden today!

He started by tilling under our cover crop. (Okay – just kidding! It was actually a bunch of weeds!)

Then we covered it with heavy black plastic. Thankfully it was a still evening! This would have been a nightmare with any kind of wind!

Then we carefully placed 55 – 30 inch wooden square frames that he made out of some of the 2 x 4’s from the old house.  And I do mean carefully; remember – he is an engineer! We used kite string and fence posts to make a grid across the garden so that each bed was an equal distance from the ones surrounding it.

Then he cut away the plastic inside each wooden square and we were ready to plant! And by we, I really mean he, because he did most of it! My garden hero!

Since we were so late in getting things in, and I had not started a single plant this year, or even made a seed order, we went to the local greenhouses and bought everything last minute.

But wait – there’s more!

My amazing husband then made cute little cloches from PVC, nylon netting, and more wood from the old house. These slip right over the 30 inch frame and will hopefully keep the cabbage moths away!

We did put up our electric mesh fence to keep the bunnies and chickens out – even though the black plastic seemed to freak them out a little. Better safe then sorry.

And there you have it! My amazing new garden thanks to my amazing husband!

So will this system actually work?

Will we be able to keep the weeds in control?

Will we actually get a harvest this year?

But what about the squash bugs?

Stay tuned.

I’m sure the continuing saga of Melinda’s Garden is far from over!


A Garden in June

It’s wonderful to be home!

Quiet June mornings with the birds singing outside the window.

Sunny afternoons with blue skies and light breezes.

Laundry on the clothes line.

And weeds taking over the garden. 🙂


But the plants are doing well! Look at that cauliflower! Isn’t that exciting! Now if I only knew when to harvest it. How big should it get before I eat it?

Thankfully my plants have caught up with the ones from the Amish store. They are loving this cooler weather and all the rain!

The squash, pumpkins, watermelons and cantaloupes are just popping through. We planted them so quickly that we didn’t get them labeled – so it will be a surprise to see where everything is!

And my tomatoes are looking good, too! All fifty-six of them. 🙂 Still looking for that first yellow blossom.

The green beans are up, the first planting of corn is up and all seventy pepper plants are in the ground. (One can never have too many tam jalapenos!)

On this week’s to-do list: plant more corn!
DSC_0161This is the best crop of peas I’ve had in several years! They, too, love the cool and damp weather. Of course the Amish neighbors already have blossoms on theirs and have probably had several meals of them already – but at least mine are growing!

Which is more than I can say for my herbs – but then I haven’t even got them planted yet.

Maybe tomorrow.

Because I’m home.

I love being home.

June is such a hopeful month.


Garden Check

Things have finally slowed down a bit around here!

Matt is safely in England, the kids are finishing up school, and we’re still eating graduation buns (and will be for some time to come!)

I guess it’s time to think about the garden again!

We enjoyed both lettuce and radishes from the very few early things that actually made it in the ground several weeks ago.

Sugar Snap PeasAnd the peas are ready to pick! The bad news is that we only got one kind planted – the sugar snap variety. The regular pea seeds are still in the packet and it’s much too late in the season to get them in the ground.

The kids are not going to be happy when they realize this fact.

Not. at. all.

They all love fresh peas. Some of them don’t even like stir fry.

There will be no sitting in the pea patch eating fresh peas and shucking the pod over the fence this year.  Nope. Instead there will be great weeping and gnashing of teeth.

We did manage to get the rest of the garden planted though.

In one night. During graduation week. It isn’t pretty.

Some of the corn looks more like a corn maze than corn rows!

But it’s in.

PepperThe peppers – both sweet and hot – are perking up now that they are in the garden!

Grow little jalapenos! Grow fast!

With the nice rains over the weekend, the green beans are sprouting! I planted Jade green beans for the first time this year. A friend brought me some last year and I loved them!

Instead of getting fat when left on the plant – the Jade beans just get longer.  I do have a packet of my stand-by Blue Lake variety for mid-season planting if I need them.

TomatoAnd then- there’s the tomatoes.

Would you believe that I initially planted 50 of the tomato plants we started from seed. Yes – 50! And I still had at least that many plants left!

So I started giving them away – to my mom , my sisters, my neighbor – anyone who looked like they needed a tomato, or two or three.

On Sunday I took what was left to church and blessed people with them.

Angel Girl somehow squeezed the remaining 4 plants in the garden – bringing our grand total to 54.

Someone asked me on Sunday what in the world we were going to do with that many tomatoes.

Umm – eat them?

It could be a busy summer!

I’ve linked this post up with the Tuesday Garden Party at An Oregon Cottage.

True Confessions

lettuceI feel like I must confess here.

After all my noble efforts to start my own plants this winter – well – ahem – things haven’t worked out so well.

Let’s start with my pathetic cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower plants.

They were so bad that when I was shopping with my sister at the Amish stores – in a moment of weakness I bought all new big and beautiful plants and planted them in my garden.

That’s not all – the spindly little cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower starts that I’ve been nursing for months got yanked out of their pots and – are you ready for this – fed to the chickens.


But wait – there’s more!

Most of cantaloupe, watermelon, pumpkin, and squash plants looked fabulous for a while – but then started shriveling up and dying. Anything that had at least one green leaf got planted in the garden this week.

I think I will need to do a lot of replanting!

But on the bright side -we’ve have several meals of asparagus, a few tiny radish and our first garden fresh salad. The lettuce I planted was a mix of different varieties – some I am not familiar with.

Pedro took one bite of lettuce last night and announced, “I think I just ate a weed!”

I must confess that since my garden is not exactly weed-free that I”m more that a little worried he did!

Speaking of lettuce – during that same shopping trip with my sister Teresa – I also bought 2-4 packs of  head lettuce to put in the garden – thinking they would give me a head start on salad.

Two nights later there was a bunny convention in my garden and all my beautiful heads were served as the entree. Let’s just say that was some expensive bunny food. 😦

But then there’s my tomato plants. We moved them into bigger pots a few weeks ago and planted them in the garden this week. They are doing great!

My friend Mendi asked me at Matt’s Graduation party just how many tomato plants I actually planted this year. Would you believe I didn’t even know?!

But since this post is a confessional of sorts – I sent Angel Girl out to count.


Yes – I need to confess to going slightly overboard and planting fifty-eight tomato plants. I may be handing out bags of ripe tomatoes to random strangers come mid-August! 🙂

There – now that all of my garden blunders are out in the open – I have nothing more to hide.

They say that confession is good for the soul – I hope it’s good for a laugh or two as well! 🙂

I’ve linked this post up with the Tuesday Garden Party over at An Oregon Cottage.