Showing posts from September, 2014

The Kitchen Garden: 2014

I haven't posted much this summer about our Kitchen Garden. It's largely my husband's domain, although I designed and laid out the garden, and I help him by starting seeds occasionally, replenishing the mulch in the paths and the compost in the beds, plus other random tasks. But I confess that I'm usually so much more enchanted with the state of my flowers in bloom that I've largely neglected to post photos of the vegetables that we've grown.

Here are a few photos of our vegetable bounty from the last month or two:

My husband and I are still learning much about vegetable growing, and we make mistakes all the time. But I believe that we're becoming more knowledgeable each year, and the Kitchen Garden improves each season.

Thanks for reading! -Beth

September in the Rainbow Border

My Rainbow Border is in Year Three (I planted most of the perennials in 2012), and it's starting to look a bit more filled in this year. Most of the perennials bloom in May and June: tulips, irises, Asiatic lilies, peonies, alliums and the like, but from July on, the color is carried by annuals: mostly zinnias, petunias and marigolds.

But I've been thinking that I should add some tall garden phlox toward the back of the border. Phlox is long-blooming, blooms later in the summer and is available in a number of colors:
White: the two White Sections of the border seem particularly sparse and could certainly benefit from an expansive perennial like phlox), and 'David' does well in other areas of my gardenPink: phlox comes in both dark and light pinks, and more purplish as well as more salmonish pinksRed: I'm not sure if the reds are crimson/purple reds, or more like scarlet/orange reds -- I would want to see the plants in bloom before I could know where in the Red Sectio…

The flowers just keep going....

I immediately identified with Casa Mariposa as she remarked in her latest blog post that she always feels surprised that her gardens continue to bloom this late in the year, even though she planted everything herself and should, of course, know what's in her own gardens. I feel exactly the same way. Even though we've had some chilly nights (and a couple days that were 25 degrees below the average temps for this time of year), my gardens continue to surprise me with many flowers:

I'm so glad we (might) have at least another month or so to enjoy these late flowers. I still have mums that haven't quite bloomed yet, so I'll have even more to look forward to, and I'll try to post photos of them when they are at their peak autumn glory (there's a particularly impressive orange one that I refer to as being "hu-mum-gous" that never fails to knock me out with its size and color).

I'm just starting classes for my county's Master Gardener program, so I…

Garden Visit: Larry Rettig's Historic South Amana Gardens

One of the gardens that I have wanted to visit for some time is that of Larry Rettig, a gardener living in South Amana, Iowa, who I first became aware of through his columns on Dave's Garden. I was quite excited to learn that he had published a book about Amana Gardening and his own garden last year, and I immediately requested that our local public library purchase it, so that it would be available for residents to read. (I reviewed his book in one of my posts last winter.)
In his book, Larry insisted that he is happy to give tours of his garden to interested visitors upon request, so I emailed him at the address he provided in the book and I finally got to see his gardens last weekend!
Larry lives in South Amana, one of the seven villages of the Amanas, a fascinating communal order founded in 1856 that continued until the 1930s, and the villages of which are now a National Historic Landmark. He and his wife, Wilma, live in the brick house built in 1900 that Wilma was born in.