Posts Tagged ‘gardening’

Tomato Attack 2013

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

Hard to beleive that our tomatoes went from this

raised bed planter box tomatoes

tomatoes in cages

To this

in less than six weeks. Hope we get some tomatoes soon. We do have lots of blooms.

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Easy Ways to Remember Plant Names in Your Garden

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

Are you looking for an easy way to remember plant names in your garden after the plants have been planted and months have passed? I was. We recently planted our new planter box and I was thinking about how my mom knew the names of every single plant she ever planted. Always. I am not so good even though I try to remember the plant names after I plant, but I only know the more “famous” ones – the dahlias, the daisies, the relentless matilija poppies. Then I thought, there must be an easy why to record the plant names while I was planting.

Sure, I could just leave the little identification marker in the box next to the plants, but 1. I think it is unreliable and not that cute and 2. Spencer pulled most of them out at the store. Luckily, the pots had labels, but that isn’t helpful for IN the planter box. Pencil and paper seems so 1996, so I went to the old standby – phone camera.

At first, I just took photos with the pot or label marker. Boring and decidedly not cute, but very functional.

How to remember plant names


Garden Markers

Boring, hard to read

Planter box plants

My dahlia wants to party all the time.

So. Fine. But not what I wanted. I thought I could write all the plant names on with picmonkey or photoshop, but I didn’t want to bring my laptop outside or the pots in the house. And then (FINALLY) I realized that I could just take the photos with my iPhone and write on them at the same time with an app. I use over, but any app with text would work.


Remember plant names

So simple.

Now I want an app that will let me take photos, store the name, date, location and then file them away sorted by location in my house. Does that exist? The ultimate garden app.

I plan on using the write-on the plant photos method in the vegetable garden when we put it in next week. I don’t have that much trouble remembering plant names with edibles, but I do have a horrible time remembering the date I planted them. I think that’s why my dad always planted tomatoes Mother’s Day weekend – made it easy to remember. You could also use the calendar app to record planting dates, but I think photos are more fun.

Hey, look this would be cute on pinterest. Hint. Hint.

Wordless Wednesday: In the Garden

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

We’re getting ready to garden for the summer. Living in coastal Southern California means a lot of plants can go in the ground in March and seeds can be started for sure. Spencer and I picked out some seed packetss at the store: strawberries, corn, green beans and a lettuce mix. Possibly carrots too. We’ll get tomato plants in May.

Rather than weed the side yard (ugh), I decided to just turn the relatively weed free former herb garden into a strawberry patch. Spencer helped, with varying degrees of success. Much dirt was thrown, most stay out of eyes, so yay?


Pointy rake is pointy

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Gardening with a Toddler

Monday, February 21st, 2011

This is the first spring/summer that I will be attempting to garden with a kid out in the yard with me. Last year, we shut the yard down to survival mode, growing only a massive zucchini plant and doing only the smallest amount of maintenance for the ornamental plants and fruit trees. I didn’t even manage to keep up with the herb garden. Compared to the year before when we had giant sunflowers in the front yard and grew peppers, beans, tomatoes, herbs, lettuce, carrots and radishes in the back, last year was barren. I love the idea of growing food and eating seasonally beyond what is available at farmer’s markets. And let’s face it, more and more farmer’s market crops are trucked a considerable distance to get to the “local” market. Yes, I get that apples from 200 miles away are more local than Chilean grapes, but it still isn’t that local. Ahem.

Saturday morning was perfect for a little gardening. The ground was damp from the rainstorms so weeds pulled out easily. It was cloudy, no wind. Just perfect. Spencer and I were out back playing with bubbles and the soccer ball and he was busy by himself, so I thought it would be a good time to grab a bucket and pull some weeds here and there. He didn’t pay much attention at first, but then became intrigued by what I was doing. Came over by my side and immediately tried to yank a daffodil out of the ground. And it struck me.

I have no idea how to garden with a toddler.

See my foot? It is on a dead bee I noticed as he was rolling around.

Of course it will be an adventure, but how can I be productive and keep him entertained AND not destroy the garden in the process? How do I teach him that roses have thorns? That bees sting? Which plants stay in the ground and which get removed? It must all seem so arbitrary to a toddler.

Danger! Danger!

I need to remember that he is always paring attention. Once. Once! I threw a rotten orange behind that plant pictured above to keep Spencer from playing with it and get it off the grass. This was maybe 2 months ago and Spencer still throws perfectly good fruit back there and I have to go get it. Worst of all is when he wants to go back there and get it and comes close to getting rose to the face. These roses are at least 15 years old, some of the thorns are huge.

So. Safety of the toddler first, sanctity of the plants second. I get that. Spencer pulling out fledgling vegetables will be a tremendous test of my parenting patience. I get that. I did at least have a flash of brilliance that he could “help” by picking up leaves from the grass and putting them in the bucket. It kept him busy and I only had to fight off his urge to dump the bucket every 5 minutes.


I’m sure anyone who is a kid person or babysat a lot or had significantly younger siblings is laughing at me. But I spent most of my adult life actively avoiding the diapered ones. I have no clue how to do any of this or what toddlers are like. At all. This is one huge crazy adventure and learning experience. For both of us.

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