A record of my efforts to live a more sustainable life.

My Backyard Gardens

I've been meaning to write about my gardens. After a couple summers of gardening I'm still definitely a beginner, and I make a lot of mistakes. So hopefully if I point out my own mistakes here, someone will learn from them. And maybe you can teach me some stuff along the way too!

So, for today, I'll just show/tell you what I'm growing (or trying to grow) this summer. Tomatoes are something I can always grow. They're nice and easy. In the picture above you can see the beginnings of my cherry tomatoes, which are grown in a pot on the patio. I've never grown cherry tomatoes before, so I'm excited to see how they turn out. They seem to be doing well, so yay! The specific variety of these is Tiny Tim.

To the right is a picture of the garden behind my house. In it, I grow raspberries (though I just bought the bush, so I don't think it'll have fruit for awhile), cucumbers, tomatoes, asparagus, chamomile, Swiss chard, and some watermelon seeds that don't seem to be doing anything. We also have a big rhubarb plant, and my mom has some flowers. I don't know what the flowers are, since I only really like growing things I can eat. The garden looks a little bigger in real life than it does in this picture, it seems to me.

This is my chamomile! This is the one plant that's really been thriving this summer. I actually planted it last year, but then never got around to learning how to harvest it to make tea, so it just stayed there. Normally chamomile is considered an annual, but I guess if you don't harvest the seeds it spreads and comes back the next year. So that was an exciting discovery in the spring! Now I just have to learn to harvest it before I miss my opportunity again this summer.

Now, I have a question for any knowledgeable gardeners that might read my blog. This is the area in which I planted Swiss chard seeds. I've never tried to grow that before, and while I've seen a picture or two of the fully grown plant, I don't know what to look for as it's poking out of the ground. Can anyone tell me if there's any Swiss chard amongst this patch of what are probably weeds? That would be awesome.

On a more successful note, this is my new garden! It's on the other end of my backyard, right by the back lane. It was supposed to be a raised garden, since the ground sort of slopes down in that area, and the soil is really dense. However, instead of wood, I ended up just bordering it with hammer-in edging. So it's only "raised" a couple of inches. It seems to be doing well, though. In it, I planted sunflowers, turnips, green onions, parsnips, and carrots. I planted sunflowers in four spots along the back, with two seeds in each spot, but unfortunately the bunny that frequents my yard ate almost all of them when they were seedlings. Only two are left now, and they were planted in the same spot, so I'm hoping they won't get in each other's way.

Now, here's another problem area. This is where I planted the parsnips. I'm not sure if any of this is anything but weeds. Therefore, I can't pull any weeds, because for all I know, they're parsnips! If/when I figure that out, I'll let you know. Hopefully some rows will emerge and it will become clear.

And finally, to end on a happy note, look how well my carrots are doing! I love carrots fresh from the garden. They're one of my favourite things to grow, along with tomatoes.

I also have a plot at a community garden, so as soon as I find the time to get out there to work I'll take some pictures and write a bit about how that's going. At some point I'll also write some more informative posts about gardening. Are there any specific topics you'd be interested in reading about? If so, let me know in the comments!


Anonymous said...

Well you know, there's an old gardening saying. If you're not sure if it's a weed or a plant, tug on it lightly. If it comes out easily, it was a plant!

Just found your blog, can't wait to explore further!

Anonymous said...

It looks like you have better luck with your garden then I do. It's all I can do to keep the weeds out of the patio, much less the garden plot. Good luck to you.

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