It’s time again for another update on the garden, and I’m pleased to say that most of our plants are growing well despite the crazy weather we’ve had lately. Mother Nature needs to get her act together, at least here in Houston. One day the high is in the 80s and the next it’s in the 60s. Our temperatures have been so up and down, and I hate it. I hate cold weather and would really love to have Spring in south Texas with temps in the upper 70s to low 80s.
Even though I don’t like the fluctuation (not to mention the havoc it’s wreaking on all of our allergies), our plants seem to be okay with the weather. Almost everything is sprouting or flowering right now, including the vegetables we planted in the boy’s garden areas.
I don’t remember what they planted in which areas of their gardens, but there are pepper plants, either squash or zucchini, and tomato plants. The tomato plants are a few starters that we got from my father-in-law’s garden and the boys planted. The rest is from the seeds we planted a few weeks ago. Also, for Easter, the boys were both given a pinwheel, so they added those to their gardens.
Our vegetable garden area is starting to get more and more plants pushing up through the mulch. When we planted the seeds for the lettuce, spinach, and arugula, we didn’t realize it was supposed to storm all day the next day, and we think a lot of the seeds might have gotten washed away. Last year we had a lot of lettuce, but this year there isn’t much growing, and now it’s too late in the season to plant more because it bolts in the summer heat here.
There is so much mint growing that we don’t even know what to do with it all. I usually would make some strawberry mojitos, but I have also been trying to cut back on sugar, and our grocery store hasn’t had strawberries the last few weeks. Justin is going to make more creme de menthe with it, but we have plenty of leaves still. If you have any ideas for great recipes that use mint leaves, please share them with me in the comments!
A few of the onion bulbs we planted are starting to grow pretty well now, so hopefully, they continue to get bigger. Last year the stems grew tall but the bulbs underneath never got big enough to use for much.
Our green onions that have been growing since last year are starting to bolt, so we are going to have to pull those up soon. I’ll either chop them up for a recipe or use them to replant and grow more since I usually like to use the stems as a garnish rather than the entire green onion.
One of our best-growing plants the last two years has been the pepper plants. This year we decided to start over and planted a bunch of seeds that I harvested from peppers as we used them throughout the year. I was worried that the seeds had dried out and weren’t good anymore, but I noticed a bunch of little tiny sprouts when I was out watering, so we may still get peppers.
There are a few random bits of lettuce growing, but nothing compared to the amount we got last year.
All of our tropical plants seem to be agreeing well with this weather. Even though it’s colder this year than it was at this time last year, they are growing in better than before. When I look back at the pictures from Ryan’s birthday party last year compared to his birthday party this year, there is a big difference in how much green is along the fence.
It’s taken some time, but the blackberry bush also looks like it is doing much better now. We are starting to get a lot more shoots off the main branches, and the last few weeks have started to get some flowers as well. The bees are finally beginning to move into our bottlebrush trees, so hopefully they will help pollinate the flowers so we can get some berries.
For the longest time, our orange tree wasn’t growing, but also wasn’t dying. It was pretty stagnant, but this week I noticed that it looks taller than before and also greener.
I don’t remember which side of this planter is zucchini and which is squash, but either way, they are both growing well! Last year we had some of these planted in the area that is now Tyler and Ryan’s gardens, and they didn’t have enough space. We would get some squash and zucchini, but they always stayed small since the plants didn’t have room to really grow.
All of my herbs are doing decent. I decided to trim back all of them except the basil, and it’s made them more healthy. The basil is doing well growing from the seeds, but I think the others just didn’t handle the transplant very well.
I can’t wait for more of the plants to grow so we can start eating food fresh from our own backyard!