As the summer is flying by, the gardening is still going strong! My cucumbers were very slow going this year! I had already made pickles in July last year! But, at least I’m finally getting some cucumbers!
I have seen so many wonderful garden or gathering aprons online, and being the poor teacher that I am in the summer I couldn’t swing $30 for something I didn’t “need.” So, I used a gift card for JoAnn’s and bought $5 in fabric and made myself one! It’s perfect for picking green beans, gathering eggs and holding clothespins!
I’ve been lucky enough to harvest around 30 pounds of tomatoes so far this year! This is a beautiful brandywine tomato
Here is a picture of the biggest jerk that has made my green bean plants their home. It’s a bean beetle of some sort and it is down right evil! I have been picking them off daily, but they are driving me nuts!
I have a couple pumpkins that are already turning orange! I almost wish it could stay this green/orange combo forever!
Is anybody else harvesting some yummy stuff? Are you busy canning, or giving lots away?
Alright, I know, everyone has wasted food! I get that! What I don’t get is how much people throw out! I really don’t get people that grow food that they have no plans on eating or giving away. They just throw it out! My neighbor, who is a wonderful neighbor, throws all of his extra garden goodies into the woods right by our property line. Here’s what I found lately:
So, I did what anyone would do! I kept them. Not for myself, but for my chickens. And they loved every bite of them!
To cut food costs and waste here at the Llewellyn homestead, we only grow food we love and preserve what we can! If we don’t end up eating it or something gets a little too ripe, we give it to the chickens! (And yes, I always make sure that what I’m giving them is safe first!)
Anything that is just too gross or not ok for chickens goes into the compost pile. This pile can get so hot that I have seen it smoking before! This is added to the garden at the end of the season to make the soil even better!
How do you reduce the amount of food that you put in the trash?
I am so happy to say that I am harvesting lots of amazing produce from the garden!
The green bean trellis is really taking off! It’s made of a cattle panel and has pole beans planted at the base.
We had an extra pumpkin plant that didn’t have a home, so I planted it down in the yard and it cracks me up how it is growing in a straight line!
Even though the sunflowers are much smaller than last year’s, they are equally as beautiful! And, the bees most definitely are loving them!
Im happy to see that some of the larger tomatoes are finally ripening! This one is a brandywine tomato and weighs over a pound by itself! I had to pick it a little too soon because something wanted to eat it!
This little beauty is my cockapoo Izzy! She is amazing at chasing rabbits away! Also, she’s amazing at looking stinking adorable in the garden!
This is the amazing harvest that I picked tonight! It is well over a pound of beans, plus eggs, a cucumber, bell pepper and a few zucchini!
The garden is growing well and providing so much for our family! Hopefully it continues to grow well!!
This year we decided to plant a new crop, sweet potatoes! We love them around here! And since we have a dog with a million allergies, we can turn them into sweet potato treats for him! We started by planting them in late May. They looked so sad and tiny then!
Once the weather started warming up, they really started to take off! They started to vine all over the place! I quickly knew that they were going to overtake their space!
When I returned from vacation, I could tell that they had really enjoyed the hot weather! Now they are everywhere!
I really hope that we will get some sweet potatoes before Fall arrives!!
After coming home from vacation, we have a lot of catching up to do around here! The garden is growing fast and really starting to produce some delicious food!
Technically our neighbor who watched the garden got the first tomato! Lucky girl! 😉 but looks like the second one is mine! The boys won’t touch them unless they are made into pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce!
I can’t wait until this beautiful muskmelon ripens! It looks delicious! I can’t believe that only a couple of weeks ago it was a teeny tiny fruit! The wood chips are working well at keeping the melon off of the dirt!
And below is a picture of some of the beautiful green peppers that are growing! They are a little behind because we start ours from seed, but they will still be giving me some yummy peppers soon!
I am so excited about the beautiful sunflowers that are growing right outside the chicken coop and run! It gives the ladies some extra shade in the summer and are just beautiful! Plus the added bonus that they will produce seeds for our girls!
We have been blessed with being on vacation on the beautiful island of Ocracoke, located off the shore of North Carolina. It’s beautiful there, but takes a while to get there! We even have to take a ferry to get on the island! Here we are leaving the main island heading to Ocracoke!
We camped for the first night and then stayed in a house for the rest of the week. While we were unloading the truck, I heard a strange-familiar sound! It couldn’t be!?!? But it was! The neighbors had backyard chickens! It was like home away from home! And they had a pretty sweet coop!
While walking around the island, I was shocked at how much the locals grow! I saw lots of cucumber vines, zucchini plants and many grape arbors! And sunflowers were everywhere!
It was a beautiful week with my amazing family! Only on this sweet island can you check out thrift shops, visit the local library where they let you take books without a library card and walk everywhere! (And of course swim in the ocean!) It’s true… time flies when you’re having fun! Now to wait and see how my garden looks when I get home!
About a month ago I had a lot of potatoes growing sprouts in the kitchen. The problem is that they are market potatoes. Why is that a problem?!?! Well, I don’t know anything about what kind of pesticides and soil they were grown in! I really don’t want to expose my garden soil to weird nematodes or any type of disease. So, instead of just throwing them in the compost, I put them in the second bin of the compost. (The one that doesn’t have anything in it as of now!) I added some aged compost and covered with wood chips. That’s it! So far, the experiment is going pretty well! Here they are about a month later:
I will definitely be updating later in the season with how the experiment is going! Hopefully I will get at least a few potatoes!
I finally got around to helping the boy clean that toy box! It was a mess! I’ve determined that my boy needs to stop collecting rocks!
So, here is the image of the mess that I looked at for too long!
We spent 2 hours sorting, cleaning and getting way too excited about things that we thought were lost! I hate creating trash, so we recycled what we could and made a give away pile.
Under all that garbage is the beautiful toy box that my Dad and brother made for the boy when he was tiny! We were both delighted with the outcome!
Tah-dah!!! Isn’t it beautiful! We think so to! And I’m proud to say that no tears were shed and I didn’t make him get rid of anything that he treasures! So, overall a success!!!!
This morning I unearthed some yummy potatoes, that’s the good news! The bad news is that I found some larvae in the roots of my zucchini! Those things get me every year! Yuck!
But looking at the rest of the garden lifted my spirits for a bit! I mean, it’s hard to not smile when you see that many beautiful blooms on one plant!
Below is the first muskmelon that is finally growing! I’m not sure if it will have enough time to mature, but I’m hoping it does!!
When I was putting the potatoes in the ground back in March, my boy decided he would plant 1 sunflower seed in the corner of the garden. And when I say seed, it was one seed from the birdseed that we had. I’m still shocked that it actually grew! That boy has a green thumb!
I don’t see a lot of honey bees in my garden, so when I do, it’s an exciting event! Beekeeping is on my agenda for Spring of 2016. I can only hope that I can make that happen!!
And lastly is a view from the bottom of the garden. It’s not perfect, but I love it! So far I have only found one rabbit in it! But I have a momma deer with 2 babies that have been hanging out around it. It’s all part of living next to their habitat!
Getting rid of stuff is HARD! Today I had to work and the boy spent time with his Pap. I really wanted to tackle the mess that we call a toy box today, but that didn’t happen.
So, instead I tackled a recipe. Slowly I am ridding myself of many of the toxic chemicals that surround me. Since I’m running out of perfume, I decided it is time to make some. I followed the recipe that I found on the young living essential oil website using the essential oil bergamot.