Sunday, May 16, 2010

Gardening 2010

My blogging has been severely lacking lately, but I'm going to try to do better. That said, I'll catch up on what little gardening I've done thus far this year. Last year I focused mainly on my attempts at growing vegetables, but this year I will include flowers as well. In my quest to acquire a green thumb, I think those count as well!

In March, I cleaned out the little flower bed by our front door and planted some pansies in front of the irises that have been multiplying and crowding each other out for the past several years. I know they should be divided, but it's something to continues to slip my mind when it's the right time to do it. Hopefully I will manage to do that this year! Anyway, my happy little pansies are all planted in the bed and have been mulched around. A month later, they are doing quite well!

Much to my surprise, the aforementioned irises also did quite well this spring. As crowded as they are, they still produced several blooms, more than I think I've ever seen them produce. They were beautiful, although they did have a hard time staying upright. I'm not sure if this is due to the rhizomes all being piled practically on top of each other or maybe because they aren't planted deep enough. My aunt says it's because of all the rain we've gotten. Any other thoughts?

Around the middle of April, I planted our small raised bed with some herbs and vegetables I bought as plants in peat pots. Last year I tried out straw bale gardening, and had some success, but I didn't prep early enough this year so decided instead to just plant our raised bed where the straw bales were.

Except for one bale in the middle, they had all broken down, and so I spread out the resulting compost into the bed and mixed in a couple of bags of Miracle Grow Garden Soil as well as some compost created from a tree that was cut down and mulched a couple of years ago. In that mix, I planted two tomato plants (1 Roma & 1 Brandywine), 3 peppers (2 jalapenos & 1 hot banana), basil, a tomatillo, a burpless bush cucumber, and some "volunteer" dill that came up in a container I had planted last year. A few days later we had a lot of rain (the same front that caused the flooding in Nashville), which killed my Roma & tomatillo. I plan to replace them soon.

Yesterday, I got out and weeded around my pansies and then planted some hostas I bought a couple of weeks ago. I also set out some pink dianthus at the other end of my flower bed, some creeping jenny around an oak tree in our front yard, and some marigolds in amongst my vegetables since I heard that they deter insects. Some of the plants had sat too long in their temporary containers, but I'm hoping they pull through. I also sowed some zinnia & marigold seeds in a bed in the back yard. We shall see what happens!