Gardening Updates from Julie and Jodi

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Whether you’re a Master Gardener, or you just plant a couple small plants on your kitchen counter, learning the skill of gardening is very important in Food Storage. Today we’re going to update you on how our gardens are doing this year.

For those of you who have followed our blog for the last three years, you’ll know that I haven’t been into the gardening scene all that actively yet. It hasn’t been for a lack of interest, but rather a lack of knowledge, space, sun, and courage! Well this year I decided one way or another, I WOULD have a garden. I spent a lot of time debating between 3 garden options for me this summer.

I was trying to decide between:

  • Using my yard that is tiny and gets virtually no sun
  • Renting a garden plot in my community
  • Planting my garden at my mom’s house which is about 10 minutes away

Each of these options had pros and cons. I wanted so badly to plant in my own yard so I could see daily progress, however it became pretty clear that the overhaul that would have to take place on a yard that may not see the light of day probably wouldn’t work. I decided I would monitor the amount of sun that comes in this year and maybe attempt it next year after having a year of good practicing in an area that actually gets sun. I decided to plant in a row at my moms house since she’s a great gardener, could help guide me, and I’d have someone to water for when I’m out of town etc. So here you have it, my GARDEN! My area is half that first row – and I’m so proud of it.

My mom was SO helpful in getting me past my anxiety of planting a garden. I’m kind of the type that doesn’t like doing things that I don’t fully understand (ummm that is how this blog started in the first place actually hahah) so this is big for me. I felt like I was walking blindly into this whole thing, but with her help I feel much better now.

Here’s what we did a few weeks ago:

  • We planted the plants that you can plant in the cold weather outside
  • We planted herbs and spices in indoor planters
  • We planted a bunch of varieties of tomatoes in indoor planters – fully planning on buying tomato plants in a few weeks in case they don’t work
  • So I’m very proud to report that my tomato seeds are doing awesome… while my spices and herbs seeds WERE doing awesome….until they got knocked over and smashed by a 3 year old. Ah well – this is going to be my test year anyways 🙂

    I got started a little later than I had intended on my garden this year (ok that seems to happen every year, maybe I should just plan on it, lol). But then we got a few of our crazy late spring blizzards and I was glad I hadn’t put too much into the ground yet. I’ve got a good start on stuff in the ground and stuff growing inside. It’s so fun to watch everything growing! My camera is being troublesome but I will try to get some pictures uploaded later today. Here is a quick summary of my progress so far.

    What’s Outside

    So far I have peas and onions that are coming up quite nicely. Like I said, I planted them late but I’m hopeful I will still get SOMETHING out of them. My potatoes aren’t showing any signs of life yet, but I have faith that they will product!

    What’s Inside

    I have a whole tray of seedlings going. Pumpkins, zucchini, and cucumbers are growing like crazy. Watermelon (first time trying it!) and some herbs are doing well. Tons of tomatoes and peppers are coming along but not as quickly as I would like. Oh well, they won’t go into the ground for a while anyway.

    To Do This Week

    I need to transplant a lot of my indoor seedlings into bigger pots. That’s always a fun (and messy) job. I’m also going to plant a lot more straight outside. Carrots, beans, corn, etc. I know it may be a bit late for spinach and lettuce but I’m going to throw some of them in the garden just for fun and hope for the best. I also need to finish cleaning out the weeds from the rest of my garden beds and I’m hoping to get some brick borders to section off my larger garden area along the fence.

    What are YOU doing in your garden this week??

  • Bperry042

    I’m working on keeping my plants alive this week while the weather is warm!  I have a black thumb and have killed my plants every year.  This year is the year though.  Your posts about gardening have been very helpful and inspiring.  About a month ago I planted some things and it feels good to have something actually growing.  I have a 5″ and a 4″ bell pepper growing on my plant!  Thanks so much ladies.  Here is my garden so far.
    If it’s not ok to post that link just let me know and I’ll take it down.  I’m just so excited about my garden growing!

  • I’m practically next door to you Jodi, and I’m doing about the same.  My peas are finally blooming and hopefully we’ll have little pods soon.  Our 3 zucchini plants came up about 5 days ago.  My potatoes are doing fantastic!  I didn’t actually plant any this year, but they are coming up from last year.  I planted garlic for the first time, and it’s grown pretty big and well.  I have no idea when to harvest it though, so I’d better look that up.:-)  My tomato and pepper plants are teeny but alive, so I’ll take it.  I haven’t had any carrots come up yet, but they always seem to take forever, so I’ll try not to panic.  As for the lettuce…it has LOVED all the rain and is bigger than I can keep up with!  Gardening is so dang exciting.:-)

    • Thanks for the update! My garden is coming along and I actually have RED
      STRAWBERRIES for the first time in the three years since we planted them.
      It’s definitely very exciting. I especially love HARVEST TIME!

  • In Southern Oregon it’s been rain, rain, hail, more rain, some sun, and more rain. We are lucky enough to have a lovely greenhouse and our tomatoes and peppers were started early so we’ve already got fruit on the tomatoes, just not ripe yet. We have a huge garden area (80ft x 80ft), but after struggling to keep it up in the hot summer weeks we get here we decided to go with a smaller area this year. We were lucky enough to get six 4ft x 4ft fruit boxes that we are using as raised beds, gophers are a problem around here, and built two 6ft x 6ft beds. Outside we’ve planted beets, carrots, onions, leeks, cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli and several types of squash. We also have beans in the ground now, and they are all doing quite well. Some of the squash I started in the greenhouse weren’t doing well so I broke down and bought some starts from the nursery. There were already strawberries and asparagus from prior years plantings and they are looking really good, especially since the gophers tried to destroy them last year. I now have a gopher hunting barn cat and she has done such a good job she’s working on the neighbors property now, coming home for attention and cat food. My husband got me a wonderful juice extractor for my birthday in March which not only creates juice but allows me to use the leftover pulp for jam or sauce. Can’t wait for the tomatoes to come on.

  • Laceylady123

    I’m in Washington state, this is my first vegie garden, and we are haveing a late arriving spring. I planted onion bulbs and peas a couple weeks ago and even thou we had a couple frosty nights they are coming up nicely. Just planted lemon cucumbers, carrots, and corn seeds outside the other day and crossing my fingers that they grow and that it is done freeezing here in the pacific nw. I also bought 3 early girl tomato seedlings that seem to be doing great, as long as I can keep my 3yo from shooting baskets in the tomato cages.

  • mur07004

     Well, I’m a student in Rexburg at good old BYU-Idaho, and therefore live in a little apartment with my husband and eight month old daughter. We have a balcony, though, so I got one of those upside down tomato planters… hopefully it works. I really want to start a garden, and we don’t have any yard to do so, so I’m opting for the topsy turvy tomato planter. Hoping to make some salsa and spaghetti sauce for my food storage. 

    I love this blog. A lot of my friends think I”m crazy, starting food storage when I’ve only been married for two years, but I feel like it’s REALLY important! I’ve got enough normal, everyday food for about a month, and I have longer-term wheat berries (100 gallons). I’m pretty proud of it, even though it’s still tiny. And really, I have this blog to thank for it! So thank you! 


  • Jennifer W.

    Here in North Texas, it’s been a pretty nice spring. I planted 12 tomato plants in March, one of which got eaten, 8 bell pepper plants in April–I would have planted the peppers earlier, but I kept forgetting, and I was sick for 2 weeks. I transplanted some wild onions from my yard into the garden, and I have 2 elephant garlic plants almost ready to bloom (I planted them in May last year). I’m planning on planting some herbs in a window box in my kitchen window soon.

    I would plant a lot more, but I’m hugely pregnant and due in August. It’s really hard to garden when hugely pregnant (I should know…I did it a couple years ago. It was not fun trying to get potatoes and carrots out of the ground). I (Kind of) know my limits when it comes to pregnancy and gardening.

  • Theresa

    Gardening season is over in South Texas (runs September to April). We’ve had 100+ degree weather for a month and no rain in months. We have to wait for hurricane season to bring rain and replenish the nutrients in the soil. The cooler temps will help too. But I’m happy to report I planted my first square foot garden and actually harvested some tomatoes and a cucumber. Will plan better and build bigger for next season. Good Luck with your gardens!

  • Nicole

    I started two types of tomato plants (from seed), two weeks ago. Inside, as we always get frost or snow until Memorial Day weekdend. I need to plant another bunch this week, so they don’t all get ripe at the same time. . . like last year. 🙁
    I also grow herbs and mesclun (different smaller lettuces) inplanter boxes – unfortunately, the only place for them right now is on the kitchen table. . . lol. . . but I’ll be planting another late this week, and I hope the first one will be ready for the deck.
    Not exactly gardening, but last week I grew lentil sprouts – I started with a half cup – my husband and I ate them every day for 5 days!! lol – they grow!! I really liked them, put them in make your own chinese recipes, ate with italian dressing, and over tacos. Yummy! I was so afraid they’d get slimy and gross. . .
    Hopefully the garden will be drying out in our beautiful sunshine days expected this week, and we are having a friend rototill Friday. As soon as I can, Swiss Chard and spinach will be going in the ground. Can’t wait to really get my hands dirty!!

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