Monday, June 2, 2014

My 2014 Gardens

My 2014 Gardens
Spring means planting the garden, which I finally got the new garden area tilled, having moved it from where I'd planted last year. Previously it had been behind the church building, but the turbulence of the wind whipping around the building and between it and the windbreak really played havoc on the plants. So this year I'm trying it out in the field (lol, like every other farmer around here). Hope it grows well, otherwise everyone driving by will see an abysmal failure - and that would embarrassing! ;)

Our last frost date is May 19th. For those in warmer climates, you have no clue how frustrating that can be! LOL Last year, I didn't know the planting date and subsequently had to replant most of the garden. This year I was "a good girl" and waited, finally getting to plant on May 23rd. I would have on the 19th, but for several days we had winds that would just about blow me over. Sorry, but I'm not into fighting the wind while trying to plant seeds - yes, I tried before. Last year. NOT fun! LOL Especially when you end up with "mystery" plants growing in the wrong place. ;)

Here's the garden just after getting it planted last week. (That clump in the middle is a tree stump that we thought was dead, but apparently isn't, so I'll either have to figure out how to kill it, or just allow it to grow a bit, but only to bush-size. :) We'll see.)

So far I've got Cucumbers, Gourds, Cantaloupe, Watermelon, Pinto Beans, Radishes, and Sunflowers coming up. Now for the Tomatoes, Corn, and Herb garden to make an appearance. :)

View from the other end. My potatoes are doing great!

Ok, is it my imagination or do all seeds sprouting up look the same? LOL The top photo is of Cantaloupe and the bottom photo is of Radishes. Seriously?! If I hadn't marked the rows, I would have no clue until they grew up a bit more.
Ignore the weeds. I always wait until I know where they're actually going to come up before getting in there and really cleaning it all out. I find it quite therapeutic! :)

Last year I planted 13 Rose bushes and not one grew. They all died! Come to find out, since our front yard used to be a parking lot for 50 years, and then vacant for another 30 years, the soil under the blown in topsoil had been killed with chemicals. And back then the chemicals weren't so "nice" as what we have today. When they wanted to kill weeds, they killed them. They didn't have the regulations we have now regarding their toxicity or whether or not they were carcinogenic or whatever. So anything I plant into the ground, dies. :( So not cool!

This year I built 20 planters and planted 20 Rose bushes. Some are showing life, most look like dead sticks. I'm giving them until July before I dig them back out and take them back for a refund. I'm really irritated with this whole fiasco. I want my Roses! :) I've never had so much trouble trying to get a Rose garden going. Once they're finally growing, they'll be trained to cover the fence. Lots of reds, oranges, yellows, and corals! If it would grow, it will be beautiful!

Just after getting them planted. Lots of work went into those boxes and then the planting. It had better pay off! :D

I also spread Midwest Native Wildflower seeds from American Meadows all over the front yard area, but absolutely nothing showed up. I'm hoping that they've settled into the ground and will come up next year. Otherwise it was quite a waste of money, considering I purchased quite a bit of it since we have a rather large yard!

Last year's Buffalo Burs will not be allowed to return here on the property. They're interesting plants, but those burs were devastating to the dogs (and us). Never mind the thorns! These plants are also host to the Colorado Potato Beetle (which can be seen in the picture as well, and the close up of the larvae and adult in the next pictures below), and considering my potato plants are now growing and I'm fighting these suckers already, yeah, these plants (native or not) are not permitted to grow on my property! :)

Buffalo Bur (Solanum rostratum)
aka Kansas Thistle & Prickly Nightshade

 Colorado Potato Beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata)

Colorado Potato Beetle larvae

The Sullivant Milkweed has made its appearance, as well as the Wild Four O'Clock, the Purple Poppy Mallow & Scarlet Globe Mallow, and many others. While we have a good variety here on the property, I would very much like to see something new. I may just have to go out and wildcraft some seeds for that to happen. :)

 Wild Four O'Clock(Mirabilis nyctaginea)

 Scarlet Globe Mallow (Sphaeralcea coccinea)

Purple Poppy Mallow (Callirhoe involucrata)

Sullivant Milkweed (Asclepias sullivantii)

There are many others making their appearance that were very prominent last year as well. Some I know their names, others I have yet to be able to find out what they are. One in particular has very pretty little tiny flowers, but then those "pretty flowers" turn into a nightmare of stickers. So not cool! LOL The poor dogs and the goats really have a hard time with those...needing "Mommy" to "fix the boo-boos". :D

This is only our 2nd Spring here, so I know much will change over time. I just have to be patient and keep planning. Love the planning. Hate the waiting! LOL

Summer will be here soon (feels like it is already). So much more to do around here, so I'd better get at today's list. 

This post is participating in the Homestead Barn Hop (#161)

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