I can barely believe it is year three of Prudent Baby’s Backyard Farm experiment. It has become such a part of our lives to tend to our garden that I can hardly remember a time when we didn’t have one. We look forward to spring like people must when they live somewhere with snow (growing up LA, I never had that “when will this winter end?” feeling I’ve heard about- but now I count the days till I get to till and plant). When we started three years ago, I had never grown anything in my life (actually I was famous for killing green things at an impressively rapid pace). Look how far we’ve grown since year one and year two! (omg, i couldn’t help myself with that pun). So…

Three years later guests who see our garden seem to think I have a natural green thumb, assuming I have some mystical talent (plant whisperer?) and/or a wealth of knowledge gained over a lifetime of growing plants. Not the case. THey think this because they assume growing food is hard. It’s not. My point in telling you this is to make you understand that anyone can grow food. It’s not that complicated. I tried it for fun three years ago, and it was not hard. Some things failed, some things died, but for the most part plants know what to do, so with water, sun, and a positive attitude (no giving up at your first fungus or squirrel), you can give it a shot. Once you start, you start learning, wanting to learn more, and truly enjoying what gardening is all about – not the results (pretty flowers or food are nice, but you can get them anywhere), but the peace.

Spending time outdoors in the sun with my plants is my meditation time, my me time, our family time. Scarlet and I have had such joy in our yard together, such pride, we make such a mess, we have such fun.

Come check out what we’ve got going on this year, and also I have a few questions for you, if you don’t mind teaching me a thing or two…

 

 

My favorite seat in the house…

Corn… planted it piled right on top of the other plants and kept them close together for better pollination this year. So far so good, we will see how many ears we get and report back.

So many tomato plants! Added a few new ones but most just sprouted from seeds left behind after last year’s crop. Flowers are blooming, fruit should appear soon!

A huge variety of peppers, I can’t remember which is which but I know I bought at least eight different kinds. No jalapenos this year though, learned that the hard way on year two (kids and spicy pepper juice on fingers is a bad combo).

Obsessed with herb garden that I started last year. Curry seems to be taking over so I’m going to prune it back and dry a bunch very soon. Basil is the hardest over here so I think i’m going to grow some in a pot. Sage, cilantro, thyme, oregano, chives, and parsley are all thriving.

Last year I planted garlic and shallots over here, but when I went to harvest them it was too early. I gave up halfway through and forgot about them over the winter. Now I see these, not sure if they are garlic or shallots, and when I should pick them? Is last year’s crop hiding underground somewhere possibly? Advice?

These beautiful heirloom pole beans just showed up. We planted them last year – they were so good – and I even pulled them up at the end of the season. But this year double the amount of plants just showed up on their own. This area doesnt seem to get enough water so I’m going to have to give them extra attention.

My fennel is out of control. I need to cook with fennel more, grilling it with olive oil and balsamic is delicious.

Jasmine… is there something I should do with this besides enjoy the scent while it is in the garden?

Eggplant! Can’t wait to make some Jordan-style baba ganoush.

Zucchini – one of those foods you never crave but when you have it around you eat it all the time. As sweetzucchini pickles and and healthier zucchini bread are favorite “stash busters” for when my plants explode with mutant giant zukes like they always do.

Cucumbers are my favorite crop. Can’t wait to make our pickles and our spicy pickles. Or cucumber popsicles. No wait, cucumber vodka. yes.

My cala lillies are sticking around longer then usual, these beauties are still blooming and i can’t bring myself to get rid of ‘em to make room for more food. What can I plant later in the season when they are gone?

Artichoke just shot up with several more branches than last year. This is year three for this plant (first year no chokes, last year we got about ten), so I’m hoping for a big crop.

Oh, strawberries, you are so cute to have but slugs are not cute. Stupid slugs.

Celery! This is my first year with celery. Any tips?

Scarlet planted this when we first moved in over three years ago, it was so tiny. I love it so much, watching it grow with her. I’m a cheeseball.

Fennel! So soft, i want to take a nap on it.

Butter lettuce – lettuce usually kinda tastes like nothing, so it’s extra surpising when you eat fresh lettuce and it has rich flavor. It’s so easy to grow and so delicious.

View from the treehouse…

I like to lay in bed and gaze upon our bounty.

And I know I’m getting old because I love my windchime, ha.

What’s growing in your gardens?

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