I planted pea seeds of several different types this year- Snow Peas, Oregon Sugar Pod, Sugar Daddy, and Super Sugar Snap Peas, in Raised Organic Garden Bed #2, on March 2nd, 2018-
The Snow Peas produced the best this time. I harvested the 1st peas on May 10th. It was 69 days till harvest, and the packages said 68. Even with the weather being so dry and warmer than usual, they still produced a gallon size freezer bag full so far. The snow peas produced a few more pods over the last weeks of May, but very few compared to earlier in the season.
I harvested Snow Peas that I planted from seeds sold by Lake Valley Seed Company. Every other day or so over a couple weeks I harvested pods, and added them to a freezer bag in the fridge crisper, lying on a paper towel. Then, I blanched them for about 2 minutes, drained, and put in the freezer.
Then, I ate them a few weeks later, because I could’t resist. They stayed so vibrantly green, and sweet and tasty! Love them!
I had a huge slug infestation this year; I spent a great deal of time cursing & pulling slugs off my plants-mostly the peppers and peas, but there were still plenty left for us to enjoy. It was extremely wet the last few months, and the slugs seemed to have moved on now because of the drier, warmer conditions.
I knew nothing of the history of peas. Turns out they are the longest cultivated crop in history! I found some very useful info about the history of peas at
Another major problem this “winter” is the temps have been a balmy 70 degrees all January.
Solution: Indoor Herb Garden!
I brought them inside despite the crazy warm temps, thinking we would have a freeze months ago, but no. The photo below was just for pretty factor the day I brought the first few inside, just before Thanksgiving. They are now growing on a north facing windowsill (with no direct sun).
Herbs add flavor to all kinds of foods and drinks, and as a bonus are known for their medicinal properties. The parsley below was delicious in this chimichurri steak recipe.
Parsley is not the most flavorful herb, but adds a unique and understated flavor when combined with other ingredients.
I am working on a post about the Garlic and Onions I planted in the raised beds. We use so much of both that I knew I must grow some this year. I am experimenting with winter gardening for the first time in the raised beds. We are fortunate to have many warm months to garden here in Georgia. However, I hope we get a little winter here soon.
I waited for several years to visit Gibbs Gardens when the spring daffodils were blooming. March 26, 2016 was closer to the end of the season, but there were plentiful daffodils and other blooming plants to enjoy. Gibbs Gardens, located in Ball Ground, Georgia, has one of the largest daffodil gardens in the world.
Daffodils appear on my blog often, and I’m excited to finally share the pics of the gardens. It softly rained from time to time that day. The white cherry blossoms and the Japanese garden were stunning. The stroll through the gardens and forest felt magical.
I’m currently digging & transplanting crowded daffodil bulbs in my yard, spacing them out, & hoping they will bloom next spring. I have a post in the works about that process.
Step #1-Find a spot with good sun. 5-8 hours per day. Mostly level with slight drainage slope. Southwest or South facing is usually good.
I built my first raised garden bed back in 2013. I needed a second bed this year because I started so many seeds, and I was ready to expand my garden. I completed the construction of the second bed in June finally-thanks to a lot of help from my wonderful husband. He did a lot of the hard work this time because I was recovering from surgery.
Step #2- Get materials, Construct, & Fill the Bed –
Materials needed– untreated wood, corner stakes, screws and drill, hammer
I refilled last year’s bed back in late April because it had settled and lost volume. I used some of my own compost from the Earth Machine, and I supplemented with organic mushroom compost and organic pine bark soil conditioner.
The Rosemary, Lavender, Peppermint, and Oregano survived the winter!
Lots of shovel turning later and …
Step #3- Decide & Plan what you will plant & where in the bed you will put the plants
Step #4- Plant herb and vegetable seeds and/or plants
The picture above is from mid May at planting time. Everything looked a little yellow here, but below is a photo from just recently. Everything took off and I have had the best garden year yet!
Step #5-Tend the beds by watering, removing pests, and harvesting throughout the season.
Enjoy the Harvest!
I am including a link to my Growing an Essay piece here. I find the connections and similarities between gardening and writing interesting.
Just a few quick photos of the summer harvest from mid July. The organic raised beds are growing & producing nicely, & I’ve only picked off three tomato hornworms-minimal damage!
I will post more details about the garden later. I also have a post in the works about the beautiful gardens at President Andrew Jackson’s home, The Hermitage, which is located in Nashville, TN. I was fortunate to go view the gardens there a few weeks ago.
Start with mini greenhouse, peat pellets, and water …
Wait a day or two before planting for the pods to lose a little moisture (leave the top off for evaporation). Agitate the soil, and bust open the tops of the pods. This gives the seeds more room, and looser growing medium.
Plant veggie and herb seeds! Or flowers, if you like. I started this batch of seeds in mid-to-late February. Most of them were leftover from last year. Some I harvested from last year’s plants-like the green beans. I also bought more seeds (& a couple tomato plants I couldn’t resist) from Cofer’s Home and Garden Showplace- my favorite garden center ever. More about that later.
I also started a second round of seeds a few weeks later. Some are the same as the first batch-like greens beans and tomatoes. I am experimenting with staggered planting times, so I can harvest throughout the long growing season here in Georgia.
Below are pics of the second round of seeds I planted.
They are just getting started in these pics from mid March. Many of the plants are now in the raised garden bed. *Fingers crossed for no late frost.* My next post will be about the repair, filling, and planting of my raised herb & veggie garden bed. The project was completed a few weeks ago with help from my sweet husband, and my friend Peggy, who was in town for a visit to Gibbs Gardens! I will also post some great pics of the Daffodil Festival at Gibbs in the next week or so.
Finally, I have a simple, organic garden bed for veggies and herbs. I am late planting and posting mostly due to enormous amounts of rain. It was to originally be 3 ft. x 8 ft., but I easily modified it to 3 ft. x 4.5 ft. Next year, I will go full size. I started with untreated lumber and simple wood stakes. I filled 1/3 with my native clay soil and some leaf mulch.
I added 1/3 Organic mulch as conditioner and 1/3 Mushroom compost to complete the mix.
Lots of shovel turning and sore arms later and I get well-drained, dark, rich soil for edible plants.
This bed contains: Rosemary, Peppermint, Lavender, Sweet & Lemon-Lime Basil, Catnip, Thyme, Oregano, Dill, Cucumbers, Peppers, & Tomato– Early Girl, Yellow Pear, and Roma varieties. I grew most of the plants from seed, but picked up a few plants like Dill and Cucumber when mine died from too much rain. I hope this small garden will produce enough to make a few jars of homemade canned goods. I planted the bed about a month ago and everything is filling in nicely. Will post updated pics soon.
These Pansies were too pretty to pass up. It was late for planting them when I did this project-3 weeks or so ago. I got them to fill in and add some color to the bed under the Crabapple Tree. The dark purple/blue color is so rich and the pansy “faces” are very charming. I used a hand trowel and very easily added the flat of 12 plants to the bed. I also filled in the top side of the bed with soil from the backyard and straightened the formed concrete “stones”. Still needs more plants and work, but it’s much better than before.