Bloom Thyme Friday: Oops!

Oops! Where did those tomatoes go! They were just here a minute ago.

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that several years ago Mr. G built gorgeous little raised beds for “his” tomatoes and other veggies. I say “his” even though, I have to plant them and water them but they ARE his. We have several things in our relationship like that.

Me and my roses have trellises. He built them. But I “control” them.

You get the picture. It works!

Back to the tomato and veggie beds…

He is very territorial about his raised beds. He even made a sign in the early days reminding me of something #noroses! WHAT! His point is well made and “usually” I am very respectful of his space.

Like I said I am ‘usually” very respectful. Well, this year I had extra nasturtiums and I hated to toss them so I asked Mr. G if it would be okay if I added a couple to his raised bed. He said fine! There appeared to be plenty of space as the tomatoes were tiny at the time. #whatwashethinking

Then I had a weak moment at Lowe’s where I bought a tiny little cucumber plant and thought it would do very well in Mr. G’s raised bed. I love cucumbers so much. He hates them. HATES them. But, when I asked, much to my surprise, he said yes. #whatwashethinking

It had been a while since I’ve planted cucumbers. OH MY WORD, they are everywhere. In a heartbeat they took over the raised bed. Well, at least what was left of it after the nasturtiums had their way #OVERACHIEVERS. There were a few days there where I was actively looking for the tomatoes. 😳

The cucumbers climbed over the tomatoes, jumped out of the raised bed, covered the daisies and ran through Celsiana who had finished blooming and is making a great trellis. I don’t see them slowing down anytime soon!

The tomatoes have emerged from the depths and are beginning to see daylight and make up for loss time. Now we have tiny cucumbers and tiny tomatoes growing happily together. #harmony

 

Mr. G has been giving me looks when he passes the raised beds but, I just keep watering and smiling!

Hope you are smiling too and …

Happy Bloom Thyme Friday!

Can you say BLT?

I love BLTs. Don’t you? I think I may have to try this Monster BLT from The Pioneer Woman…. click here. If you take a look at that sandwich she prepared, your mouth will water for sure!

Nothing is better on a BLT than your very own homegrown tomato! And, yes, we are starting our 9th week of drought. Last week we had our first rain (1/2″) and as grateful as we are, we sure would love some more. (I recorded the rain… click here to hear that wonderful sound and see how fresh it makes everything look!)

Regardless of the lack of rain, Mr. G and I are committed to watering our tomatoes and to feeding them Annie’s Moo Poo Tea. When all the water your plants get comes from your efforts, well that is a lot of work and with so many days in the 90s and 100s, we have had to be vigilant.

A LITTLE HELP FROM MY FRIENDS

Last February I surveyed my garden friends who also love tomatoes and got a ton of suggestions on what tomatoes to plant this year. (You can read about it here.)

Based on the their suggestions, I am growing Rutgers, Mortgage Lifter, Brandywine, Lemon Boy, Beefsteak, San Marzanos, Cherokee Purple and a few others that “grabbed” my attention at the local garden centers and Lowes.

OUR EFFORTS ARE PAYING OFF…

What is your favorite variety of tomato? Do you have a unique BLT recipe you’d like to share? I’d love your recommendations!

Bloom Thyme Friday: The Good. The Bad. The Ugly. Part 2.

The gorgeous Flamenco rose has required very little water / from the Biltmore Collection

Today we start 9 weeks of drought… as you know my garden is very large and I have had to limit watering to my roses and tomatoes and alternating trees and shrubs that are closest to our living area.

As I write this I am in the garden looking up at a simply gorgeous summer sky… not a cloud in site! Even in times of drought, God does amazing things… with people and with plants.

There is always an up side, I read that it looks like the US will set a record in the month of July for the fewest tornadoes on record. After the horrible storms of last summer (remember Joplin, MO), that is sure welcome.

And, as far as the roses are concerned, they are usually covered in Japanese Beetles at this time of year and so far we have seen very few. In their place are beautiful blooms without bug bites! That is sure welcome!

Zinnias can take the heat…
Roses get watered once a week and still keep going!
Tomatoes get water a couple times each week….
Hydrangeas in the side yard…
Sunny Knockouts and wave petunias can definitely take the heat!
Black-eyed Susans can take the heat.
More Zinnias with Phlox that is also beating the heat very well.
First bloom of Tropicana … rescued from sale table.
Gold Medal Grandiflora….
Picture worth a thousand words…

Container Gardening: From Ordinary to Extraordinary

I love growing in containers. I grow everything from tomatoes and herbs to exotic flowers and shrubs. Each year it is fun to decide what containers to use and what plants to try.

Through the years I have turned just about everything into a container for plants. Sometimes I find something unusual and the container is more important than the plant. But, most of the time my containers are ordinary and it’s the plants that make them special.

However, there is one container that I use every year that is very special to me, this little metal water pitcher that is filled with lemon mint…

Mammy's Pitcher
Mammy’s Pitcher

This pitcher belonged to my grandmother … the same grandmother who went to see her doctor when she was in her 80s and asked the doctor to give her a pill that would make her feel strong enough to hoe in the garden. This little pitcher was a part of her everyday, ordinary life. To me it is completely extraordinary in the memories that it holds!

I am told she had the greenest of thumbs and could grow anything. And, you can be sure that I love it when other family members say, “You remind me of your grandmother, Mammy!”

Here are some containers in my garden and even a picture of me taken a few years ago dressed in one of Mammy’s dresses, holding her water pitcher…

My favorite plants to use in containers…

  • Tomatoes (Because I am obsessed)
  • Chile Peppers
  • Roses
  • Mint (…Because I love it and use a lot of it BUT it will take over if you plant in ground!)
  • Most used cooking herbs
  • Nasturtiums (Planted around my tomatoes)
  • Dorotheanthus Mezoo (Big name but excellent trailing plant)
  • Lantana (Hummingbirds & butterflies love)
  • Wave Petunias (’cause they can take the heat)
  • Geraniums
  • Coleus
  • Ferns
  • Gardenias
  • Succulents

For more on container gardening, click here.

What do you grow in containers?

You might also enjoy these family stories…

Memories of My Mom…

My Dad the Sailor…