Close up of green bell pepper (with logo overlay)

Garden Update: July 2019

It has been hot, hot, hot in Texas lately! There has been a high-pressure system sitting over the SE portion of the country and it is driving up the temperatures. That being said, we have still spent a lot of time outside. After all, what else is summer break for?

Tyler’s birthday was early in the month and he received skates and a new scooter. So, of course, we spent a few days outside trying those out. He loves the scooter but still needs more practice with the skates. We’ve also spent a lot of time in the pool and play in the rain when we can to cool off.


Luckily, even with the hot weather, we’ve also had a lot of rain to help the plants. There have been quite a few mornings that I got woken up around 5 am to the sounds of pouring rain outside. Just look at how much water was in the sandbox, and that has a lid:

Herb Garden

I made a few changes to the herb garden again. My cilantro is all but dead. I don’t know why I can’t seem to keep that growing.

When the oregano plant completely died, I decided to replace it with some green onion scraps. These were only the base white part of the onion to start. I placed those in water for a few days, until they grew more roots. Then I transplanted to this jar and added a bit more soil. They’ve grown a lot since then!

The thyme was just barely sprouting last month. Now it has one vine growing out of the jar.

As usual, the mint is growing like a weed. We could harvest a little bit every day without hurting the plant.

A few weeks ago, Justin’s brother moved back to Florida. When he did, he had a few herbs growing in pots on his porch. He gave them to use, though he doesn’t remember what was in each of them. For now, we have them outside on a window sill. A few are also near the pumpkin plants.

Fruit & Vegetable Garden

Speaking of the pumpkin plants, those things continue to grow! Still no clue to what type of squash is growing. But, since the boys dumped pumpkin seeds there at Halloween, it’s our best guess.

Next to the mint, we have a few pepper plants growing. I don’t think any of the seeds we planted sprouted, but these were purchased as starter plants. There are a few peppers growing in on them right now. They aren’t ready to harvest yet, but getting close!

We have also been getting quite a few tomatoes growing in the garden. Justin was able to harvest a few of them recently that we used for Southwestern Salad. There are more growing on the plants that aren’t ready yet. According to Justin, since he did the planting, the ones along the back are starter plants and the ones in the front are those we started inside a few months ago.

One of the many things I love about banana trees: they always come back! If you remember, back in January and February, these were nothing but large stalks. Large, ugly, brown stalks. Now, after a few months of warm weather and lots of rain, they are back in full. And there are some new pups pushing through, too!

The blackberry bush has finally, sadly, slowed down on its berry production. For a while, Justin and the boys would go out every morning and come back with at least 10-15 berries. We have really enjoyed having fresh blackberries and are going to miss them for the rest of the season now. We discovered that, if we went out first thing in the morning, we usually beat the birds to the berries.

Also, on this side of the yard, we have a tomato plant growing in the empty garden bed. Actually, it’s growing behind the garden bed! I didn’t notice it at first, but Justin did when he was putting stakes out for the plants.

And, you guessed it, that darn orange tree is still there….

Back Yard & Front Yard Plants

With the wonderful and welcome (to me) heat that we’ve had, the backyard is looking greener than ever. It also helps that we’ve had a lot of rain lately. The Asiatic Lillies have dropped all of their petals, which means the stalks won’t be far behind. But the Canna Lillies are still going strong as well as the ginger plants.

In the front yard, everything is so green. I am really glad we Justin moved the sweet potato vines to the flower beds. They are growing very well there and I love the coverage they give. It filled in all of the mulch areas we had before that I never liked.

What’s New in the Garden?

If you go back up to the photos of the mint and the pepper plants, you can see the beautiful new fence there. The fence between our house and the neighbors was falling apart, so the guys replaced it last weekend. Now, after seeing how nice it looks, it makes me want to do the entire fence line.

The boys also built a birdhouse with their PaPa (Justin’s dad) a while ago and we finally got around to hanging that up.

Current Favorite Garden Products

Last Month’s Garden To-Do List

  • Build a structure to hold netting over the blackberry bush to keep the birds away
    • We decided to hold off since the blackberries are almost done producing fruit for the year
  • Buy new oregano seeds to plant in the herb garden
    • I planted the green onion in the jar instead
  • Transplant celery and green onion scraps to the garden
  • Pull weeds (yes we did this last month, but it’s a never-ending job)

Current Garden To-Do List

  • Pull weeds
  • Harvest vegetables as they are ready
  • Start a list of what to plant for the fall
  • Keep watering the plants so the 110F heat index doesn’t kill them all off
  • Stake the rest of the tomato plants as needed

Your Turn

  • How have you been spending the summer break? Or winter if that’s your current season?
  • What’s your favorite thing to do outside to beat the heat?
  • Have you tried to grow any of the food you regularly eat?
  • Any tips for keeping the weeds at bay in the garden beds?

View the full June Garden Update here

25 thoughts on “Garden Update: July 2019”

  1. Wow! I’m so impressed by your garden. I don’t have a green-thumb at all so I think it’s really cool that you’re able to grow some of your own food. Keep it up!

  2. I feel so happy to see your garden especially the banana tree. I love gardening! We use to grow vegetables, banana tree, mango, lemon and pomegranate in India. I am missing them a lot after moving to NJ. Guess I should set up something here soon. Your pictures inspire me a lot. Thanks for the great post!

  3. Fae Celine Ong

    I love gardening! I mostly plant flowers but I would definitely want to try planting herbs and vegetables too

  4. You are certainly taking advantage of summer’s best! I try to get my kids outside as much as possible as well with water being a favorite. Gardening is another activity I share with the kids. Hey, who doesn’t love picking fruit right off the plant and eating it?

  5. It’s been really hot over here in Alabama as well! We have some herbs that have been greatly suffering from the weather, so I’m definitely going to be following you just in case there’s any vital tips or info I could pick up to keep ours blooming as well as yours!

  6. This is so impressive! I love the variety of plants you have, and as a Brazilian I especially love that you have a banana tree! Best of luck with the rest of the season. Hope the blackberries pick back up!

  7. Ohhhh wahou !!!! I wish I was able to do the same thing. Right now I do not think I am capable of doing it. I am so impressed when I see people garden. Great job !!! I will be following your posts.

    1. It’s so easy. Those are old sauce jars that I covered with material and filled with potting soil and seeds. It took me one afternoon to have them all decorated, planted, and ready to go.

  8. Whoa! You’ve been busy in your garden and it all looks good. That oregano is growing like a tree and the banana stalks are doing very well. Kudos

  9. Fran Jorgensen

    I just love these updates! They remind me when I used to have a homegrown veggies too!! Life is too hectic at the moment to grow my own, but it’s definitely a great thing to do for the kiddos! I love this update!

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