by Texas Homesteader ~
Well, well, well – here we are in May. Now here in NE Texas we’re in planting zone 8A so typically this time of year my garden is really starting to fire up, but this year’s garden has stumbled along due to both circumstances beyond my control as well as a comedy of errors. Come along and see my successes and my… well my not-quite-so successes.
Planting Behind Schedule
A family illness kept me from properly caring for the seeds I planted in my indoor greenhouse in February. So very few seedlings survived, and those that did survive weren’t really vibrantly healthy. I was able to plant a few jalapenos, 2 San Marzano tomatoes and some starts of corn but…
I was pretty excited that the corn I planted in cardboard tubes really did have a head start over waiting until the last frost & planting in the ground. I’m already saving them back for next year and looking forward to success!
Unfortunately what I didn’t take into account is that this new garden layout this year puts much of the garden in shade from about 4:00 in the afternoon on, so it’s not near the sunshine I’m used to receiving for my precious veggies. But as we get closer to summer the sun will get higher in the northern sky so that will help… someday! But for now, the corn is lagging behind schedule…
Buying Seedlings This Year
Since my indoor greenhouse plants didn’t do well I tripsied to the store & purchased several small seedlings to get my garden started: More heirloom tomatoes, Red, yellow & green bell peppers and another jalapeno plant. After those seedlings were in the ground I proceeded to drop in more seeds for heirloom green beans, okra, pumpkin, spaghetti squash, summer squash, watermelon, etc. They’re slowly growing, I even have some roma tomatoes on the vine! The onions I transplanted were not happy at all, not sure they’ll make it. The elephant garlic however didn’t miss a lick and is growing quite well.
But my edible landscape was looking pretty good – the lacy carrot foliage looks adorable lining the bed, and groups of herbs were planted and labeled using rocks found on the ranch: sage, basil and oregano.
The cantaloupe vines I planted will grow along the top of the ground as a living mulch, shading the ground beneath the vines and preserving moisture along the way.
And the zucchini plant I planted to anchor the whole thing is really starting to take off. I’ll be excited to harvest that zucchini soon and make more zucchini noodles this summer, I really enjoyed them last year.
And of course I have things planted in the cement planters on the porch: chocolate mint, spearmint and thyme. Hey, I’ve always said that if you’re going to have pretty planters and plants adorning your porch, they might as well serve dual purposes!
Aaaahhh… The sweet rewards of spring in Texas! I planted a wild blackberry vine along my garden fence to be able to sneak a couple of juicy ripe berries still warm from the sun while I’m gardening as well as to keep an eye on when the berries in the pastures would be ripe. Apparently it’s time for me to go to the back paddock & go berry picking – I see blackberry cobbler in our future!
The concord grapes growing along the garden fence look like they’re going to have a banner year this year too, the blooms are prolific and the vine is very healthy. Yea!
So there you have it, the state of my garden so far this year. How’s your garden growing?
C’mon by & sit a spell! Come hang out at our Facebook Page. It’s like sitting in a front porch rocker with a glass of cold iced tea – lots of good folks sharing! You can also follow along on Pinterest, Twitter or Instagram.
If you’d like to receive an email each time a new blog post goes live it’s EASY to Subscribe to our blog!