Pioneer Woman at Heart

One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!

One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

Adopted Motto

"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~

Friday, May 24, 2024

May Gardens ~ Bringing Up to Date


I trimmed our lilac bush.  Last year a pine tree fell on it, and took half of the bush.  I did not cut any flowers this year, and the dead flowers have been trimmed, along with a few dead branches.  May is the best time to trim it, so it has all year to produce new growth.

Lavender mid-May.  I was too late with a spring trim.

Transplanted a few bunching onions that grew in areas they were not planted.  Same with chives.

Planted more perennials in the flower bed - more blue delphiniums, and a few tall dianthus (Rockin Red), and a few Astra Blue Balloon Flower.  I also added two new lily's - one yellow and one pink.

Note on perennials:  We had a conversation with a shopper about these plants, and she much preferred annuals. She said they bloom all season long, but perennials bloom once and are done.  It made sense with what she was saying, but I explained to my husband, that we have a variety, so we have different blooms all season long.

The start of our garden season has been brutal with unusual hot weather, but we planted two Eastern Redbud trees.  One was planted were there was an invasive honeysuckle growing.  It took longer to get that tree planted, as the ground was rock hard dry.  I had to water the area for 3 days, and then dig out the invasive plant, and then plant the tree.  

Also, the rain continuted to shift, and not arrive as forecasted most days, so we opted to plant herb plants this year vs. drop seeds.  I, of course, planted new rosemary plants, but I'm still determined to win in keeping them alive over winter.  I got a few tips from a friend, but it is a battle (as they do not survive winter).

I took this photo on 2-29-2024.  Also, my husband said he saw "several" sprouts when he was mowing.   We had several garlic starting to sprout above the soil.  We put them in waist high raised beds this year, and covered them with framed, half inch by half inch wire.  We had planned to remove the screens once they were all tall enough, but we went out last week, and these sprouts were literally gone!!  Zero.  I dug through the dirt, and found no rotting bulbs.  NO bulbs at all.  All of the garlic was gone!!  

Okay, so obviously, a large rodent can't be the eating it with the screens on the beds.  The soil was new, so we find this completely odd that a grub or bug ate them.   Scratching our heads, but we will not be buying garlic to plant, for at least two more years to find out the cause.   We've never had a problem growing it, but the last three years we have.  We may go back to planting it directly in the ground.

We had purchased the garlic from Territorial Seeds (music garlic).  Bad garlic?  We'll be buying ours from a farmer's market or produce stand this year (not for planting, but for eating and making homemade garlic powder).

What I planted - new spearmint, 2 basil plants, 2 cilantro plants, 2 rosemary plants,  2 parsley plants, and an extra peppermint plant because I accidently thought I was buying spearmint.

I have once again dug out all of the lemon balm and moved a bit of it to my "weed" garden.  I am forever reminded of making that rookie mistake at planting it in the herb garden.

I use spearmint primarily for infusing in our iced tea.  I learned to make it from my Grandmother on my Mom's side of the family.  Spearmint, along with all other herbs and spices, have medicinal benefits, and we absolutely love the taste of spearmint in our iced tea.

Sharing a few snippets from the flower beds.  It's not all of them, and there may be a few stragler weeds in there yet.  The second day after hanging new flower pots around the front porch, we were delighted to see our first hummingbird visit them.  We don't put out hummingbird food, we put out flowers and they love them.

We visited a tree nusery and looked at one more new tree possibility, and possibly fruit trees, but for fall or next year.  We also found out they also sell a ton of perennials.  There were green houses we didn't even go in.   We found creeping phlox, after searching in 3-4 places.  You can see that my husband picked out another flower to add to our flower beds.

Although May is not over just yet, we most likely will be planting the vegetable gardens into the first week of June.  Our mid-week rain never arrived, which gives us more days to plant, but then it also requires us to water.  I have purchased new hose sprayers this year, and a new sprinkler.

I apologize for the long post.  I'll try to keep them shorter in the future.

By the way, how did May go by so quickly???

May Gardens ~ Bringing Up to Date © May 2024 by Kristina at Pioneer Woman at Heart


Mother Em said...

You need to post some "long shots" of your flower beds. They look beautiful. We've been eating spinach, which has long gone by now, the last of the sugar snap peas and tomatoes are getting bigger, just not eatable yet. A few of them transplanted from the compost pit; potato plants looking good. Everything organic, no poisoning here. Peach trees (all grown from pits in the compost pile) are loaded; just might get some stewed or frozen this year. Blueberries are slowly coming in and figs will be plentiful even though worms got in the tree trunks last year and had to cut back. Well, enough here; got to get out and try to get groundwork done around/under the deck we just had replaced before we hit high 80s. What a mess! You try to do some front porch sitting, relaxing this holiday weekend. Hope your husband is off to enjoy as well. GA Mary

Pioneer Woman at Heart said...

Mother Em, thanks, I will try and get some R & R time this weekend. We are to get rain the next 3 days, so I am no sure we'll get any more planting done.

Far Side of Fifty said...

Pretty flowers, I am partial to snapdragons:)

Debi said...

Your flowers are lovely! I struggle with perennials but several of my herbs came back nicely this year.

Pioneer Woman at Heart said...

Far Side of Fifty, there are very few green houses that sell snapdragons in our area. I love them.

Pioneer Woman at Heart said...

Thank you Debi