In truth I am spending more time in my garden these days than in front of the computer. It has been too long since my last update. There is so much to do outside, I am busy watering and pruning and mulching and weeding. It’s certainly a full time job as the garden has expanded over the last year. However, I find it very satisfying and great exercise. The garden has responded to my love with a plethora of flowers.
In full bloom are the roses and dahlias.
There are so many flowers that I’m having trouble finding places for them in the house, and running out of vases. I do love seeing the flowers from the kitchen and in the bedroom, they make me happy.
We have been grilling summer squash from the vegetable garden. I try to pick the zucchini before they get too large and we are overwhelmed. They are wonderful sliced thickly, lightly brushed with olive oil and cooked on an open grill.
I’m still harvesting lots of lettuce, arugula, chard, and radishes. The carrots are almost ready to harvest but the beets have not done well. I worry that it is because the soil was depleted by the previous planting of lettuce and have added some blood meal for nitrogen. My worm compost bins only contain shredded newspaper and kitchen vegetable scraps (plus egg shells), maybe too much carbon? Anyway, I have planted another row of beets in the enhanced soil, fingers crossed. It’s not warm enough here for many of the regular summer vegetables as I don’t have a green house. I’m thinking next summer of putting a hoop house over one of the raised beds, I do miss summer tomatoes and cucumbers. Thank goodness for a good friend who is providing me with her extras.
I was worried about the lack of bees earlier in the season. They are now here in abundance, almost entirely our native varieties of bumblebees and not the European bees. There is a definite buzz to the air when I am in the garden and I find sleeping bees in flowers early in the morning.
As an experiment, I put out a praying mantis egg case a month ago and was startled to see hundreds of babies this yesterday when I went out to water the pole beans.
I am lucky to be without too many pests so I hope they find enough to eat. I think in a pinch they will eat each other.
The pollinator meadow has changed, going from reds and pinks to pinks and blues. I pulled out the red poppies once the seed pods had dried out. They will return next spring after the winter rains. Now I see mostly Clarkia, bachelor buttons, larkspur, and a few lingering poppies of different colors. Here’s a quick snapshot of the progression.
It’s starting to dry out, as is our ‘lawn’, without any summer water.
But there are plenty of flowers in the backyard island beds.
I plan to write a post about my favorite plant combinations, there are some that I have found especially pleasing.
Time to get back out there. Thank you so much for visiting and happy gardening to you all.
Just beautiful Liz! When I was young I found a praying mantis egg case and brought it inside and put it in my desk drawer. Obviously I had no idea what is was and lo and behold one Sunday morning it hatched!!! I can’t remember any punishment but it took forever to get rid of them 🙂
Oh my! I can imagine, there are thousands of them in the egg case. You must have been finding them around for months. However, they probably got rid of any insects in the house.
The females eat the males after mating!
I so love reading this Liz! You are such a Mother of the Earth! Miss you lots!!
Hi Dianne, Wish you could come visit. There have been a lot of changes since you were here last year. I would come pick you up.
A beautiful and prolific garden! Working in the garden is rewarding on a variety of levels.
It is, thank you.
What an amazing array of flowers Liz, the love you put into your garden shows. Hopefully thoses insects wont eat too much 🙂
Thank you Moya. I find working in the garden very relaxing and rewarding.