Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Diana Garden

Flowering Sweet Peas will decorate the fence behind the new Diana Garden.
Do you name your gardens? I do that out of love ~ and also by necessity. I don't have an automatic sprinkler system (which is unusual in the Desert Southwest.) Naming my flower patches helps me remember where I watered last and who's in need of a drink.

Plus, it gives them lots more personality. Everyone who visits loves the Impulse Garden best of all. It's a chaotic, colorful mess of all the flowering perennials I simply had to have! Whether I needed them or not. All squished into an ever expanding sunny spot.

Holy Frijoles! Sadie's Horse Beans (left) & Pinto beans (right)
This week, I've been starting the Diana Garden ~ thus named because it's a collection of heirloom veggie seeds from my blogging friend, Di. I skulk around her blog quite often because she includes recipes for the harvest.

Di gifted me with all kinds of great stuff. These pretty Horse Beans... black tomatoes... Hungarian peppers... and some sweet and sassy Watermelons.

I'm coming off a bad luck year for growing veggies of any kind so this inspired me to design a new raised bed for all of Di's goodies. One that's more protected from the elements.

I'm dolling up the ends of the raised bed with climbing sweet peas and Hyacinth vines. All of which I'm starting by seed.

That's one of my favorite, Zen-y things to do.  Sitting Indian-style on the floor, planting teeny, tiny seeds with an eye brow tweezers.

Been doing that every evening this week. Will probably be doing that every evening next week, too. I went way overboard on seeds this year.

And, just in case you're wondering where your seeds are... Not to worry! I should have those in the mail to you real soon. :)

Cherokee Heirloom Tomatoes
Seed Planting Tip: The fabric mesh wrapper on those ever popular Jiffy seed pods do not decompose in the soil. Remove the mesh before planting in the garden to avoid sad root-bound little flowers.

Thanks, Di!


JOHN SHORTLAND, Cotswold Hills, England. said...

Hi Kate

It's unseasonably warm here in the Cotswolds at the moment so I too have been sowing seeds - in my new raised bed as well. Rather a coincidence! So far, raspberries, rhubarb, beetroot, radsh and lettuce. Rather an odd mix but who cares!

Love the look of the Cherokee tomatoes - doubt if we can get them over here. One of our heritage tomatoes is called after the old lady that lived in the neighbouring property to ours. 'Aunt Madge' tomatoes turned out to be an unknown type, quite small and tasty. Apparantly, Aunt Madge was quite a character too!


joey said...

A lovely tribute to dear Di, a gem in many ways. I am very fond of her too and will be anxious to see images your/her garden. The Gardens of Overhill have names for beds too ... The Rock Garden, The Wildflower Garden, The Sun Garden, The Rhodie Garden, and The Wild Woodland Garden. Happy April :)

The Hag said...

I do name my gardens. My favorite is the Grandmother Garden. In it are peonies from my great-grandmother, my grandmother and my mom, along with many other old fashioned flowers from family gardens. My daughter and I are going to try taking advantage of the micro-climates around our place this year. A hot spot by her house will be tomatoes, peppers, melons and eggplant; a spot at my house will be herbs so that we can get some partial shade. Then we will have the big vegetable garden for the root crops, lettuces and hardier things. We're hoping that by dividing things we can manage water and climate control a little more effectively (and labor too :-).

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Hi, Johnson;
I'd be happy to send you some Cherokee seeds provided you send me one of your new cutie patootie puppies. They're adorable! :)

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Joey, yours is another blog that keeps me well-nurtured with gorgeous flowers AND fab recipes.

PS: I'd love to see pics of the Wild Woodland Garden. :)

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Hi, Katherine;
That Grandmother's garden sounds absolutely delightful. I did a similar thing with my Mother's peonies. I'll be curious to see how you fair with your veggies in the hot spots. It seems to help quite a bit at this place. :)

A Garden of Threads said...

What a great idea, naming your gardens. I must try that this year. I have not started my seeds yet, soon. Happy seeding this week.

Janie said...

I like the idea of naming garden sections. Unfortunately, none of my sections look very impressive.
We had a terrible veggie year last year... largely due to neglect. Hopefully we'll do better this year. I do like homegrown veggies.

jan said...

That tomato looks soooo tasty! I love hyacinth beans - I think they almost glow at certain times of the day. The current name of my small garden is the crabgrass patch!

Cynthia said...

Great stuff! I am dying to get out in my garden but it hasn't happened yet. Too many people have claim on my time and the weather has made it tough too. Soon.

That tomato picture is making me hungry!

ProfessorRoush said...

I name my beds, but mostly by the main thing in them. Also growing hyacinth bean the first time this year, so I hope they do well. And nice tip on the Jiffy mesh....explains a lot of losses in the past...I don't use those pellets anymore but never really knew why except that the plants never did well after sprouting.

Unknown said...

Hey, I name my garden sections too. And here I thought I was being pretentious. I too hand water, but the names help me focus and clarify my planning, more than anything else. Hmm, I could do a blog post on this. Some of my favorite 'gardens' include: the Desert Woods ....the South 40 ..... the Stanley Strip. Others are more mundane: the House Beds, the Crescent Bed, the New Garden.

I'm impressed you can grow Cherokee tomatoes in your short season. I usually stick to the shortest-season varieties I can find, and throw in a couple of impossibly long (70-80 day) types just for the challenge of it.

Marguerite said...

You're right! For years I kept putting those silly mesh things in my compost and they never seem to break down!

Lona said...

Hi Kate. That Di does have the most impressive plants in her garden and menus. It is fun to try some new things in the beds but my family will only eat certain foods so I do not have a wide variety when it comes to veggies. I name my beds but they are so boring all but maybe the Bathroom bed. LOL!

Anna said...

Personally, I do not name my garden but I do give names to my favourite plants. I talk to them just as if they wee close friends and I guess they grew up better and happier when I call their names.

Anna said...

What a lovely way of making a tribute for the lovely Lady Di.

Kate @ Gardening and Gardens said...

I don't name my gardens, but I love the idea of it! I am growing sweet peas from seed this year and hope they look as good as the ones in your first photo!

Shady Gardener said...

I do name my gardens... "The Sunny Corner Bed," the "Raised Bed/Children's Garden," "The Woodland Walk," etc.

Makes it fun. :-) Happy Spring!

Mariana said...

I don't know if you admire your posts, your garden or the beautiful pictures you take.

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