IMG_2775 While at Tazzina’s the other night with a friend (thanks again, Beth, it was a lovely night!), she asked how my garden was growing. Beth and her hubby are avid gardeners, so we swapped stories of what is doing well for each of us, and sadly, what isn’t.

IMG_2782 My tomatoes continue to be the strongest survivors of the garden, although one variety is just now turning red and seems to rot fairly quickly. Not sure what to make of it; is it a disease, a bug, or do they just need to be pulled as soon as they ripen? D has already had his share of cherry tomatoes and loves finding a ripe one!

Beth and I both agreed that strawberries don’t seem to do very well here – she had tons of plants one year and only got about 30 strawberries in total all summer long. Our strawberry plant has produced about 5 strawberries, if that many. Tasty, yes. But small in size. I keep watering it, wondering if that’s all we’re going to see this year.

The carrots continue to look good up top, but I pulled one out the other day, just to see what kind of progress they had made. Not much. The packet didn’t give me a length of time for full growth, so I’m guessing it’ll be another month or two before D is munching away on those.

IMG_2785 My neighbor graciously watered the garden and patio plants for me while we were away on vacation last month. A few days after we got back, I noticed a few black spots on my beautiful butterleaf lettuce plants. I kept thinking it was just soil that had splashed up on the leaves, but within days, that little bug had completely ravaged every single plant!

IMG_2778 The cucumber plant looks great; D pulled a cuke the other day but both of us didn’t think it tasted all that good. It looks like another one will be ready shortly – hopefully we’ll get better results as the summer continues.

IMG_2783 I decided to move the hummingbird feeder since we still weren’t getting any birds to show up. Oddly we’ve only seen 1 bird at the new location. I mentioned it to another neighbor and they were perplexed as to why they hadn’t as many birds as they normally do. So, maybe it’s not just my backyard after all. Wonder where they’re all at??

IMG_2780 The herb garden was doing really well, but I learned something pretty quick: there’s really no point in having something like an herb garden unless you’re going to be using the herbs on a regular basis. And I really don’t have a high need for herbs, apparently! My sister-in-law mentioned to me that plants like basil and cilantro will “flower” if they aren’t cut back on a regular basis. Eventually my cilantro plant completely flowered and now the basil is on it’s way as well. Yes, I could continue to cut them back, but it’s “weird” to toss fresh-cut herbs in the trash and they only keep for about a week in the fridge.

IMG_2784 And finally, my Fatsia japonica plant is once again looking quite gorgeous. That plant / tree was the most beautiful thing in our backyard when we first moved in 2-1/2 years ago. The hummingbirds flocked to it – there were so many blooms. I got pregnant, life happened and I kind of ignored the poor thing. Within 2 years it was still there, but definitely looking quite sad.

My mom, (another avid gardener in my life), advised me to sprinkle some iron around the plant, along with the other original backyard trees and plants. I could NOT believe how great they all looked after just a few short weeks of consistent watering and tending to. The leaves were back to being their lush green and there really seemed like “new life” to all of them; a bit of a “spring in their step,” so to speak.

And what about you? How is your garden growing these days?