First, thank you all so much for your wonderful (and sometimes hilarious!) comments on our bathroom renovation! It's been great reading what everyone thinks about it. :)
Now let's talk gardening for a little bit, shall we? I'm not a huge gardener. After living in a condo or apartments for pretty much all of my adult life, it wasn't until we bought our house last year that I had a garden of any kind and grew anything more than a basil plant, indoors. We have a nice, petite city yard that's a great size for us. Big enough to dip our toes into gardening, but small enough that we don't get bored with all the yard work. Sure, I'd love more privacy, but that comes with having a city neighborhood house. So what if I sometimes run for cover when the neighbor comes out and I'm taking photos of myself? But I digress.
I thought I'd show you a few highlights from our garden this year. I haven't yet done much planting in the two main backyard beds we have. One bed has gorgeous well-established peonies in the spring and Asiatic lilies in early summer, with some gaps (and obviously, weeds). I can't tell you how much chives I pulled out this spring. And yes, I like chives just fine, but I don't need to grow
enough for the entire Midwest.
In this bed, I'm still learning what comes up where, and what I'd like to add in the future.
Just for kicks, I did try to grow a few other things in this bed this year. I only got one little loney anemone early in July, pretty as it was...
But the gladioluses have been much more successful! Except they were supposed to be red.
Yeah, totally not red.
The other bed is next to our chain link fence on our neighbor's side, and is kind of a hot mess. It's a mix of four rose bushes, one random hibiscus, a big patch of day lilies, and some sedum. All spaced really far apart, with old-as-dirt lava rocks between them. There's also lots of weeds growing, some of which (like practically prairie grass) grows over from our neighbor's yard and drives me bananas. The other weeds in the bed don't really bother me much right now since we haven't really done anything with this bed, so we just pull the really bad ones.
We have to do some serious thinking about this bed for the future, but at least in the meantime we have some pretty bloomers.
The hibiscus (a luna rose, which I was able to identify last year from some sleuthing) is just starting to bloom today!
This bed, because of all the weird gaps, is also where I put my container tomatoes. So far we've had some delightful cherry tomatoes!
Our juliet grape tomatoes are just starting to ripen, and we've had our first large patio tomato, which was twice the size of our largest last year!
With a second soon on the way!
I also love to fill our deck with containers of annuals and herbs, since it's a favorite summer spot for us.
Our thyme is growing nicely from seed...
Earlier in the summer we had cilantro and our first crop of radishes, plus catnip for Dinah, all grown from seed as well.
And two kinds of basil plants (sweet and Greek) are going to town. We've already made yummy pesto and need to again!
Now see those huge leaves on our lattice, to the right of the basil up there? That's our pole beans. When my dad was here to remodel the bathroom, he made us a cedar bed, where I intended to grow annuals each year, switching things up if I wanted. Here's what it looked like at the beginning of June, before we completely turned over the grass and filled in with soil and some peat moss...
I planted pole beans and zinnias from seed, and have been very patient. The pole beans are now growing like crazy, and the zinnias are just starting to bloom. I'm so excited!
Let's not forget our favorite gardening assistant!
The zinnia seeds are a mix of red, pink, yellow and white, and it's delighting me to see which color blooms next!
Since lots of other colorful things in the garden have come and gone or are fading, it's so much fun to see the zinnias just kicking off!
How about you? What are you growing this year—in your garden, on your balcony or deck, or in your home?