Hi there! I'd love to share our garden with you, especially since we share it with so many already
My favorite part of gardening is seeing all critters that move in once we've created our mini vegetable jungle. We use the square foot gardening method, which means more shady areas for toads, snakes, earthworms, etc. (Plus we don't use any chemicals - just good ol' compost and weeding). Sure, we get more slugs and whatnot, but what I see the most of are the creatures that eat the things that eat our vegetables, so all the better!
Come on in!
We planted late again already, and seeing as we live in northern VT and don't have much of a growing season to begin with, we'll see what we get. But so far, we have zucchinis, green and wax beans, turnips, peas, asparagus, sugar snap peas (my favorite!), blueberries, and a whole selection of herbs that we've been gathering.
Some of the spoils:
Soon we'll have sweet corn, carrots, beets, parsnips, onions, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cucumbers, and more pumpkins than we'll ever know what to do with. One year I carved twelve of the twenty that grew. Last year, when I was living in Missouri and too far away to put them to artistic use, my Dad grew 77 pumpkins, all from volunteer plants out of the compost. This year we only kept one volunteer and planted the rest, though all those sunflowers you can see in the back were "planted" by the songbirds, and later moved by us.
Every year the garden is a family effort - My Dad and I do the planting, weeding, watering together, I do the harvesting, and my Mom stores the fruits and veggies, and does a lot of the cooking and baking with them. This year we had some extended family come to visit, and I got a kick out of how eager my younger cousins (7-12 years old) were to eat vegetables! I had them eating green beans, peas and snap peas, and even asparagus right out of the garden.
We like to take advantage of our native "weeds" that can be beneficial. We leave the clover and johnny-jump-ups to grow and add nitrogen to the soil.
I also happen to often find helpful plantains next to painful stinging nettles while I'm weeding. Funny how that works out.
Beyond the "weeds", we have a plethora of tasty wild foods that we encourage to grow. This year was great for wild strawberries, raspberries, and black raspberries. Soon we'll have blackberries and wild grapes too.
This year, we decided that one good tomato variety deserved another, so we wound up with a few extra plants that needed a home. We chose to use them in the decor, along with some wild black-eyed susans!
I'm not sure if these count in the garden since they're elsewhere in the yard, but we also have some apple trees, and we grow our own Christmas trees. In the back there, you can see a new tree growing from the stump where we cut our tree a few years ago.
Alright, since I'm on a roll with these pictures, I'll add some more shots of some garden visitors and flowers from June.
Bride and Groom
A rather large Garter Snake, while she was squirming backwards into my work glove.
Ruby-Throated Hummingbird at our hostas.
curious Red-Bellied Snake
Whew! I hope you enjoyed your virtual stroll through our garden. Thanks for looking!