"And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress and keep it". Genesis 2:15

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How Does Your Garden Grow

I thought it would be fun to keep an on going picture album of the garden progress. This will help me with evaluating the stuff I am doing this year. A clickable picture in the sidebar will take you to this post in future.

Spring 2010

Grape Hyacinths and Daffodils

Peach Blossoms

Look at the shape of this snow on the pots!

Bumblebee on Red Bud Blossom

Baby Spirea bush. I love the arching shape of these bushes.

Ajuga with fountain


Same shot as the header only a year later.

Mariposa Skies 

Early December Snow

Wednesday we woke up to a surprising site - big puffy flakes of snow falling from the sky! No snow or freeze had been predicted so no one was expecting this. It snows so infrequently here - maybe once or twice a year, usually in January. Our first freeze was two weeks late, then snow. What next? Of course it did not stick to the streets and by late afternoon it turned to rain and the snow was all gone. Here are a few pictures of the garden. Anna took all these pictures for me.

Looking over the side fence at the vegetable garden.

Lantana and iris in the snow.

Frozen Vegetable Garden

Cute Cabbage in the snow.

Frozen Okra flower.

November Update

Garden Mid November. Since this picture we have had a slight frost which only cut the pumpkins back a little and didn't hurt anything else.

First time for growing cabbage. It looks like they are starting to form heads. We plan to try and make sour kraut with these. Unlike some people we really love cabbage. We will eat it just steamed with a little yogurt and salt added. I did have some worms but a little Safer Caterpillar Killer (which is organic) killed them all.

First time I have grown mustard. I think tonight I will try to make some fried mustard greens with bacon!

Bell Peppers
I have just picked a bunch of bell peppers. Now I have to decide if I want to freeze them or figure out something to cook them in. I usually just eat bell peppers in salads, but these wont last that long. I could make a peck of pickled peppers I guess.

Green Tomatoes
Some of the tomatoes are starting to ripen. I have to figure out what to do with them all. I love to just eat these raw sprinkled with a little salt.

Tomatoes are very tricky in the fall, because if you let them get the slightest bit frozen they will rot and not ripen. You have to really keep an eye on the weather and bring them all in green if freezing is forecasted. They will ripen on their own sitting on the counter. I almost always have to bring them in green, which is really aggravating, because after the first frost we can have weeks of great frost free weather - too bad you can't put them back on the vine!

 I've got lots of broccoli in the fall garden. Its so fun to pick your own.

Baby Pumpkin. The pumpkins were hit by a slight frost we had a while back, but they didn't die completely. I have quite a few baby pumpkins still on the vine, but I am not sure how they will do now. So far we have harvested 4 10-15 lb pumpkins and I hope we get a few more.

Garlic coming up.
This is my first time to plant garlic. I'll let you know how it turns out.

I made sure I planted a sweet, non-bitter cucumber for the fall garden (Cucumber Sweet Slice hybrid from Park Seeds) as the bitter kind attracts cucumber beetles (and nobody likes bitter anyway!) I planted them under a row cover to keep off the beetles that were already out there until they were big and ready to flower, then I uncovered them to allow pollination. This strategy worked great and I hardly have any beetles in the fall garden, or any bad bugs compared to the late spring garden. I will use this strategy in the spring with all the vegetables in the melon family, because cucumber beetles killed every single one of my cantaloupe plants this year. These cucumbers taste really good too.

Garter Snake- I don't grow these, (though it seems like it.)
I run into one of these frequently in my garden. I thought they would be eating insects, but I looked it up and they eat what other snakes eat - rodents, lizards, snails, frogs, birds, spiders, worms and fish. These guys are pretty small, that's a soaker hose it is next too, so what could they be eating in my garden? I hope it is snails and not frogs! I love all my frogs!

Early October

Garden, early October

Cabbages and broccoli, early October

Large pumpkin blossom.

Our first pumpkin 12.5 Lbs

After So much rain I now have this mystery fungus to contend with. It is growing on the woodchips and this cabbage leaf.

Here are a few photos from late September.

I have been refurbishing the front flower beds.

Giant Pink Autumn Crocus

Golden Rod gift from the birds.

Yellow Autumn Crocus in front of the Pyracantha.

I have forgotten the name of this already. It is a spreading ground cover for under the pink Knockout roses.


My first cup of tea from the herbal tea garden.  In this picture the blue flowers are Borage flowers with a borage leaf on bottom of the pile, the white and yellow ones are Camomile, and the ferny sprig is fennel.

Four-O'clocks. Pyracantha on left.

Four O'clocks.

Morning Glory.

Our first pumpkin! Mid September.

Spider Lilies. I love things that bloom in the fall.

Pyracantha berries. One day I will make jelly with these.

Oxblood Lily. A rare native Texas bulb.

Garden mid September.

Okra Bloom.

Okra Early September

Marmalade under the okra, early September

Pumpkin and squash patch. Summer, butternut, and acorn squash. This takes up the entire south half of the garden.

You can see in the middle part of the garden the buried watering pots covered with tin pie pans. Next to them are planted broccoli, cabbage and brussel sprouts. Early September.

North half of the garden. Bell peppers, lima beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, okra, summer and butternut squash.

Lima Bean Pods and Flowers. Early September.

Morning Glories. Early September.

Crepe Myrtle early September

Turk's Cap. Grown from wild collected seed.

Stink bug Nymphs on a Pomegranate. Early September. These have been sprayed off with a strong stream of water from the garden hose twice now. The first spray they just came right back. The second spray was longer and more vigorous, and only a few have come back. Will keep checking and spraying.

Ground cover with little blue flowers. I think it might be a type of spiderwort. It hitched a ride from my old garden to this one with the other plants I transplanted. August

Turk's Cap. I collected this seed wild from a country Neighbor. It makes "edible" berries.

Rain Lilly blooming after our 2 inch end of July rain.

Pink Lilly blooming for the first time. It took two years to get this to bloom. Flowers that bloom in July and August are my favorite. August 3rd.

Vegetable garden August 3rd. Okra, tomatoes, yellow squash, two winter squash, pumpkins, peppers, lima beans growing, broccoli and cabbage just planted.

Most of what you see here is left over from Spring and not doing too well, except for the yellow squash. August 3rd.

Pumpkins and winter squash August 3rd

Purple Cone Flowers, Mid June

Hibiscus, Mid June

My Mannerly Tomato Vines, Mid June

Butternut Squash Bloom, 9 inches across, Mid June

Vertical growing of squash, cucumbers, tomatoes and green beans
Mid June

Vegetable Garden Mid June

Nile Lilies, Liatris with Daylilies, Mid June

Vegetable Garden, Early June
Onions, lettuce, Spinach harvested
Tomatoes, Beans, Squashes growing

Part of the Onion Harvest, May

Daylily Bed, May

Hail and Shredded Leaves Early May

Vegetable Garden Late April

Wildflower Bed Late April

Joseph (or Jacob's ?) Lilies Early april

Irises Early April 2009


  1. How often do you separate your iris rhizomes?

  2. Squaw Creek Ranch,

    Well in the past we have moved every 4 or 5 years or so and that's when the irises would get dug up, moved with us and separated. If you plant them about a foot apart to begin with you should only need to separated them every four or five years. You can tell they need to be separated if there are fewer smaller blooms.

    Thanks for asking!

  3. Check out this site: http://www.spinfarming.com/ I saw a write up today in E Magazine. Haven't looked at the site yet.

    We have been unable to seriously garden in many years, but we are about to move into our newly built home and are getting our feet wet again. Using ideas from the Lasagne Gardening and Square Foot Gardening books. We have 4 - 4X25 foot beds ready for this fall.

    We'd like to grow as much as we can eat (can, freeze,etc.) year round and have extra to share and sell. It would be nice to pay the "rent" to the local tax authority, at least.

    My husband is really interested and will like you blog as well.

    Nice blog, nice photos, too.

  4. Thank you for your kind comments.

    As you can see there is a lot of learning and experimenting going on here too.

    I posted a link for a planting chart for North Texas that you might find helpful.