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This Year's "Gardening" Effort
Old 07-13-2019, 01:17 AM
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gitano gitano is offline
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
Age: 68
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Default This Year's "Gardening" Effort

I don't really "garden", per se, but I do very much like to grow things. Plants are easier to grow than animals so it's plants mostly for me these days. I grow stuff in pots on my deck, and I have a modest pair of planters (about 3' x 15' each) outboard of my patio. I have more permanent plants in my patio planters: A rhubarb bush on one end of each planter and gooseberry plants on the opposite ends of each planter. In between the gooseberries and rhubarb my wife plants some vegetables like, bok choi, and summer squash, and I plant things like chives and nasturtiums. This year I've let the volunteer sunflowers from the bird feeders on the deck continue to grow. But it's the deck plants that get most of my attention. There are some 'standards': birch trees, nasturtiums (so I don't have to go downstairs to 'graze'), pansies, basil, sage, and zonal geraniums (cultivars, not wild types). I usually try some 'new stuff' each year. Of the 15 or so years I've had the deck 'garden', this year has been the worst as far as 'success' goes. Too bad really, as this has been a record-setting year for heat. Nevertheless, I have had some success, and I'll post some pictures.

Not included in the above list of "standards" are some that I have grown off and on over the years: Cilantro, mint, thyme, lupine (AKA "blue bonnet"), poppies, rattlesnake grass, and snapdragon. In addition to those, are some new experiments: Fig trees, three species of oak, four baobab (Adansonia sp.), sweet peas, columbine, kumquats, bristlecone pine (supposedly one tree being the oldest living thing on earth at 4,773 years old), Peruvian daffodils, persimmon, black spruce, red cedar, wild Alaskan iris (from seed), white spruce, apple (from grocery store-bought apple), "potatoes in bucket", and continuing for it's second year, black coral pea (Kennedia nigricans from Australia). It's supposedly a biennial, and doesn't produce fruit (flowers) until its second year. I started it last summer and nursed it through the winter in my house in south-facing windows. It has grown 'enthusiastically' so far this summer, but no sign of fruit/flowers yet. I'm keeping my hopes up for that one to bloom.

Here are the pictures. (Not all of them are good pictures as I left my DSLR in Oklahoma when I visited my cousin, and I'm having a difficult time getting it back, so these pictures are all from my cell phone.) I'll start with the 'standards'.

Pansies - I love the yellow ones as they have the most wonderfully sweet (and strong) fragrance.

Zonal Geraniums: Very difficult to get digital cameras to get "red" color right.

One of my little birch 'clumps':

Mint, thyme, and cilantro:
June 24th

July 11th

June 24th

June 26th

July 11th

"8-Ball" zucchini:
June 24th

June 26th

July 11th

June 24th

July 11th

June 24th

July 11th

June 24th

June 26th

July 11th

Now for the 'experimentals'.
The only baobab that germinated - so far.
July 11th

The Peruvian daffodils.
June 24th


July 11th - Still no flowers.

The figs! REALLY hoping to get some fruit from these next year!

Rattlesnake grass:
June 26th

July 11th

The oaks! I planted 5 acorns, only three came up. Actually a fourth did 'come up', but died.

June 24th - this is the one with the biggest, greenest leaves:

June 26th - Still just the one with big leaves.

July 11th - Her are the three survivors:

Persimmon. This is the ONLY seed that germinated out of SEVENTY-TWO that were planted! No apple, no black spruce, no white spruce, no cedar, no iris, no kumquats and no bristlecone pine.

June 26th

This is a picture of the black coral pea back on June 26th. Didn't take one of it yesterday, but there has been significant additional growth. Just no flowers yet.

And finally, the potatoes! They are growing like crazy! Looking forward to a good harvest.
June 26th

July 11th

Whew! Lotsa pictures.

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. John 8:32

"We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful." ~ C.S. Lewis.

Do not confuse technical skill for wisdom and do not confuse strength for skill. Paul Skvorc
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