It’s A Start….

baby beans

…But a slow one.

It’s still unseasonably cool here – we’ve just begun to have nights where the temps stay above 60. The beans are up (barely), but the squash are just sitting in the still-too-cold soil.

cheater's tomatoes

Tomatoes look good!

True Confession time: I bought them this year, rather than starting my own. It feels a little like cheating, but there you have it. All the laundry got done this winter, but the Garden Stuff didn’t. Wonder if I’ll ever be Grown Up enough to get All The Things done in the same year?

Don’t answer that.

Anyway, if you’re in the general vicinity and need awesome plants for your garden, I highly recommend The Farmer’s DaughterΒ in South Kingstown RI. Organic plants, lots of knowledge and incredibly friendly folks. Great selection of herbs, too…

the whole thing

In keeping with our theme this year – The Year of Herbs and Flowers – I’ve taken the first bed out of vegetables and let the grandkids choose loads of flowers for picking later in the year. Lots of snapdragons and marigolds, with a few other things thrown in besides. Looks a bit sparse now, but give it a few weeks to fill in, and we’ll be swimming in color!

And speaking of color:

shell-pink peony

Claire – here’s one of those peonies! One thing the cooler nights have been good for – the blossoms are lasting much longer than normal. The lilac bloomed for three weeks, rather than just one, and there are even still a few irises left.

The peonies are having a great year, but their bed is a mess…

who is that in the back?See what I mean? Looks like a jungle. Soon as they’re finished blooming, I’m diggingΒ it all up and starting over.

Hey! What’s that pink thing in the background?

one lonely foxglove

Well, look at that…one lonely foxglove. A rouge seedling from seasons-past….in the yard, not the bed…

Sometimes being a lazy weeder has benefits.




34 thoughts on “It’s A Start….

  1. I bought tomato seedlings too this year. If you ask me, learning to choose your battles is the height of Grown Up! I love your peony – mine is on strike this year. And though the flower beds might be a little wild and wooly, I’m deeply impressed by your tidy veg plot!

    • Thanks, Siobhan – love your reasoning about choosing your battles.
      The kitchen garden was a gift from Hubby 7 or 8 years ago…if I was going to be growing veggies where they could be seen from the house, it had to be attractive πŸ™‚

  2. This spring has been cool and rainy for us as well. Beautiful peony! Those are one of my favorite flowers. I had to buy some tomato plants this year, too. shhhh don’t tell anybody πŸ™‚ Hope the kids enjoy their flower garden!

    • Peonies bring back such wonderful memories – my great-grandmother had an enormous flower garden in Marshall, AR. Some of her peonies live on at my mother’s house now…before long, I’ll be dividing them to put into my own garden, since she’s thinking of giving up the big house for a smaller place.

      Oh, and don’t worry – your secret about the tomatoes is safe with me πŸ˜‰

  3. Wonderful idea about flowers and herbs !
    It ‘s so pleasant to have an interior with flowers in and to be able to put herb in the food or in tisanes
    Good luck with the weather !
    We have big thunder storm this night : I never saw so many white flash of lightening this night, in my life !
    and today they announce the same in 2 time : this afternoon and in the night

  4. Looks good! I’m late getting my plants in too, as I chose to go to Europe for 2 weeks the first of May, which is prime planting season in Indiana. Got green beans planted yesterday and cabbage plants and peas.

    • I’d say Europe was a better deal πŸ˜‰ Since the granddaughter moved in with us, I haven’t been back to France, and I miss it terribly…

      Is planting and growing close to ‘average’ in Indiana? So many of us are late this year due to the Winter That Would Not End – did you escape it?

      • We had a late frost just before I left for Europe, and I believe while I was gone, it was cool and rainy just like it was in Paris when I was there. So, I think folks were a little late getting their gardens in here too. Would have been a good season to plant cool weather crops though. I didn’t plant anything until I got back. Love eating peas right off the vine.

    • Have to say, Angel was less than impressed after the flower bed was planted…I think she expected it to look like a magazine photo right away. Patience isn’t a virtue familiar to four-year-olds πŸ™‚

  5. There’s nothing wrong with buying in plants… especially if you have a good local grower to buy from. Sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything – you’ve been busy raising grandchildren instead of tomato seedlings this year, much more worthwhile!

    • I feel a little guilty about the seedlings – Hubby got me a nice set of indoor grow lights, and they’re gathering dust this year…the basement isn’t a safe place to take the kiddos, so it just didn’t happen…AH, well! We’ll have a garden, and that’s what counts πŸ™‚

  6. I have a peony πŸ™‚ ok so it’s yours … but it is beautiful.
    I bought a few starter plants this year too – things like winter greens. I decided life is to short to stress!
    But I did sow some foxgloves ….

    • I’ll share the others when they’re ready, too πŸ™‚
      Sowing foxgloves down by the pond now – nothing will eat them, so they should be good for next spring!
      (Oh – I think Customs must have gotten the sweet pea seeds…hope they haven’t put the two of us on the Naughty List!)

  7. Oh definitely a good reason not to weed… I’m always looking for new excuses! I know what you mean about buying plants… I feel guilty too but sowing everything isn’t an option when time and space is short (and the nights are too cool). But I gave tomatoes a miss this year as they just weren’t worth all the work last year. Maybe next season… A whole bed for flowers for the kids is a great idea. Hope it warms up soon for you!

    • A co-worker once told me she’d given up on foxgloves because they never came back. I explained Biennials, and she threw up her hands and said, “I can’t tell weeds from seedlings! They ALL go!” Poor gal…
      I can see tomatoes being a problem in your garden, but it wouldn’t be summer without them in mine πŸ™‚

  8. i think it is wonderful to support the locals who grow plants for you.. your flowers are great, i see what you mean, the cool temps are perfect for them.. c

    • I say that about the veggies I don’t grow, too – we have plenty of local farmers to support!
      The flowers are going to be fun…Angel is counting the days until she can start picking them πŸ™‚

    • I hear you! But in the 18 years I’ve been up here, there have been two summers where it never got hot…pleasant on the skin, but awful for growing. I’ll take some heat – just not all at once!

  9. Having a wonderfully diverse nursery 9 kms up the road, I have bought all my vegetable and herb seedlings in punnets of 1-10 for a decade or more. The choice is ginormous, the plants healthy and ready to go at 2-3 cms high, all the directions are attached and the losses are almost non-existent. Much less work and I do not feel I am a worse home gardener for that πŸ™‚ ! Your warm season is late . . . I guess you have to get all your growing in between now and August? BOO!!!!! Absolutely love the peony πŸ˜€ !!

    • Lack of choices was the reason I began growing from seed. With more and more people growing their own and a renewed interest in heirloom varieties, the selection is so much better now!
      Our warm weather is late, but it’s not as bad as all that…I get good growing conditions through September and even into October – that ocean effect helps keep us warmer at the end of summer. Right now, it’s working the opposite way…

  10. It’s a good start. Nice foxglove! Mine, transplanted from the parents’-in-law property last fall, are still rosettes, and the two peony bushes have five tight, tiny buds between them, but other things are flowering merrily. When it comes to gardening, maybe we all need to cut ourselves more slack…

    The children’s garden bed sounds like great fun!

    • The selection at the nursery was huge – much bigger than the last time I bought veggie seedlings! I might never worry about seeds again!
      Not really πŸ˜‰
      Angel was excited about the flower garden until she saw it all planted. Try explaining “They get bigger” to a four-year-old! Still don’t think she believes me…

  11. I love this jungle of yours! And your tomatoes really look good. This year I thought I do something good and covered mine with plastic to protect them from rain but the wind gave them a good beating and some look rather unhappy and may need to be replaced. What harm, I know better now!

    • It’s always about Live and Learn in the garden, isn’t it? The long, cool spring has brought a plague of aphids and slugs this year – something I don’t usually have to bother with…the slugs ate the cucumber seedlings the minute they popped-out, and now we’re re-starting them…It’s always something new, even when the garden doesn’t move πŸ™‚

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