Sunday, August 19, 2007

Midsummer Garden Check-Up

Since it's raining (yay!), today is the perfect Green Thumb Sunday for me to do a garden check-up. This is only my second gardening season, so I'm still learning. Here's what worked, and what didn't this year.

First, my flower bed. This is the only dedicated flower bed I have in my backyard and everything except the rose was planted this season or last. It's still a work in progress, but it looks a lot better than the weed-filled bed it was when I moved in. There are still some things I need to move (the Coneflowers), replant (Rudbeckia)

The good:

  • Cosmos - These were purchased very cheaply from a local nursery. They are by far my new favorite annuals.
  • Using compost instead of synthetic fertilizers
  • Deadheading
  • Buying hanging baskets at Marc's, a local discount grocery chain. They were way cheaper than anyone else, they look great (although not as lush as they did in June) and they're still going.
The bad:
  • Coneflower - Last year I tried seeds to no avail, this year I planted seedlings that seem to be doing well, but haven't flowered. Maybe next year I'll finally see a Coneflower?
  • Black-Eyed Susans - I love these never-ending bloomers, and I was so pleased when they bloomed from seed last year. Except this year, mine dried out and died. Maybe it was the extreme heat and dry weather we've been having. I definitely want to replant these, but maybe I'll try a different variety.

To improve/try next year:
  • Use the trench method to plant tomatoes
  • Use a better staking method for the tomatoes
  • Plant the tomatoes in a new location, perhaps incorporate them into other beds
  • Work on the front flower bed, try winter sowing to get more plants cheaply
  • Find more room for more spring bulbs
  • Plant small flowering plants in groups, they get lost on their own.
  • Do something with the weed jungle on the side of the house and the other side of the garage

Gardeners, Plant and Nature lovers can join in every Sunday, visit As the Garden Grows for more information.

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