Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Gardening . . . Making good choices - part 2

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Here are the garden photos I promised you! I hope you get a sense of how excited I am to wake up each morning surrounded by such beauty! Hope you enjoy the tour!

I feel so very blessed to be able to grow my own organic fruits, veggies, herbs, nuts and flowers!!!

I'm growing Cochiti Popcorn in blocks of 12 stalks with beans planted between the corn.

Beans somehow magically produce nitrogen in the soil to feed the corn. Isn't God amazing?


German Chamomile grows quite tall and tends to bend over. It's ready to harvest when the petals bend backwards, below the yellow cone. Harvest in the morning, when the sun has dried away the dew (not a huge problem where I live with 13% humidity).

My first harvest . . . I can't wait to steep my first cuppa!


Our blackberry bushes are just beginning to produce blossoms.

The bees are quite busy in the citrus right now. That should be winding down in another week, when our blackberry and boysenberry bushes should be loaded with blossoms. Both make for some very tasty honey!


Look at all the buds! It's gonna be a great blackberry season!


Some of our heirloom garlic and rhubarb Swiss chard.


Popcorn is to the left. Spinach, 2 types of butter-crunch lettuce, cilantro, and our tomatoes.


Bloomingdales Spinach handles the heat quite well. As you can see, I am keeping it shaded.


Four Seasons Buttercrunch Lettuce is supposed to handle all kinds of weather.

I had to start my seeds inside, I could never get them to come up when I planted them in my garden.


The first 4 tomato plants are determinate hybrid Early Girls. They have a very short growing season, very important when living in the desert. The 6 in the background are my indeterminate San Marzano Paste Tomatoes.


My beloved rhubarb patch! After living in the desert for over 30 years without fresh rhubarb, I am overjoyed to be able to grow my own, by seed as an annual.

Little green apricots . . . Our old apricot tree is still producing sweet, juicy apricots . . . Can't wait to make a Fresh Apricot Cake!

Our "Little Pollinators" have given us a bumper almond crop this year! Our tree is loaded with green almonds!

Yes, these are apple blossoms! Is there any scent more perfect than the apple blossom? I think not!

The Grands love picking their own apples right off the tree. Funny thing, back in Michigan all our apples had worms in them if we didn't spray. Here in Arizona we don't have worms in any of our fruit trees!

We'll be eating peaches the first of May!

I've been enjoying my sweet peas, sweet fragrance both indoors in bouquets, and outside while gardening.


The wild flowers I planted last October continue to evolve as 1 species of flower quits blooming and another takes it's place. Notice the red poppies, they are perenials, so I will be able to enjoy them for many years to come!


Wouldn't this make a beautiful watercolor?

California poppies and bluebells.


Scarlet Flax . . . I so enjoy people walking by, riding by on bikes, and horses. They all say the same thing, "Look at those red flowers!" They are a very unusual color here on the desert. Most flowers are yellow around here.


Our beautiful bottle brush tree . . . normally it would be buzzing with honey bees, but they're busy in the tangerine, lime, lemon, orange, and grapefruit trees.


Notice a different kind of "pollinator", a little female hummingbird, in the top of the photo.

The first time I saw one of these flowers, I thought they had wired fake flowers onto a tree!

Bachelor Buttons and little blue forget-me-nots.

You are supposed to be able to use bachelor buttons as a natural dye. I'd like to try it in my homemade soaps.

This is a "Most Wonderful Time of the Year" my garden is growing, our fruit trees and berry bushes are being pollinated to produce lush, sweet fruit, the air is sweet with the perfume of citrus, and flowers, the weather is perfect, the weeds are in abundance (yuck!) and keeping me busy . . . Over at Julie's!!!


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