I was a little hesitant re-starting my garden this year. I still have produce in my freezer from last summer. Why would I want to grow more fruits and vegetables this summer when I still haven’t consumed the stuff from last summer? The answer came to me when I went food shopping and saw the prices of peppers and other veggies.

So, here I am. I cleared out all my six raised garden beds from any winter debris. I pulled out any weeds or brown leaves that settled around the edges. I hoed and broke up the soil. I poured a fresh cover of compost and worked it into the dirt beds. In reality, I thought this was going to be hard work but it was actually easier than I anticipated. An added bonus was that I unexpectedly enjoyed the work! The only problem I encountered was that I did the work very slowly. I was hoping I’d be a bit faster, but I wasn’t. I had to take a few sit-down breaks in between working on the raised beds. I waited for my strength to come back and then got right back to tilling the soil. Things aren’t so easy anymore for this 70 year old lady!

This year I dedicated one whole garden bed to nothing but herbs. My parsley and oregano came back but not my rosemary. Of the three, only the rosemary is a perennial but it didn’t regrow. I had to buy another plant @$4.99. Ouch! In fact, I started off the season thinking I would buy plantings already started. Some veggies, such as the beefsteak tomatoes were $1.99 for four plantings. Others, such as the eggplant were $4.99 per planting. I could tell this wasn’t going to be a good idea. So, for the remainder of the garden I used seeds planted directly into the garden beds. Our cold evenings are gone and we have no more threat of frosts, so this hopefully will work out well.

In my dedicated herb garden I planted: a whole line of basil seeds and Italian parsley seeds. I also have dill, rosemary, oregano and chocolate mint. On the very edge I did plant pickling cucumbers but they will grow vertically along the fence and not interfere with the herbs. I did buy zucchini plantings already started. That’s because last summer my zucchini plants started to grow BUT were never pollinated, so they shriveled up and died. I had placed two wasp traps around the vegetable garden and that proved to be a very bad thing. In addition to killing all the wasps, it also wiped out some bees and other pollinating insects. This year, no wasp traps, so fingers crossed the zucchinis will pollinate.

I planted pea pods and peas around my apple tree from seeds. Again, peas grow vertically and will not interfere with the apple tree located in the center of the bed. By the way, both my apple tree and my peach tree are doing splendidly. Not sure if we’ll get any fruit this year BUT definitely next year guaranteed! I planted, from seed, green beans around my peach tree but as close to the outer circular fence as possible. Green beans grow vertically also and should not interfere with my peach tree.

In the remaining beds I’m growing cucumber from seeds and summer yellow squash. I’ve got a row of two kinds of peppers, green and red hot. One row of broccoli from plantings. I mentioned the eggplant and the tomatoes, all from plantings.

Hubby did clear out a big patch of earth. He was going to plant grass seed but I came up with the idea to plant perennial wildflowers from seed. The assorted wildflowers will attract birds, bees, hummingbirds and butterflies. Hopefully there will be a few pollinators in there which will be good for my vegetable garden. The rains have stopped so I’m stuck watering the patch every day. Fingers crossed it all works out. If it does, it will be lovely.

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