Sunday, March 30, 2014

Our Dirty Days

This weekend, fueled by the beautiful California sunshine, we took the first steps toward reviving our balcony garden and our balcony in general.  Ella and I spruced up the soil and planted seeds while Hendrix practiced his digging skills.  Sadie played happily in her jumper and J cleaned up and reorganized his new gym equipment.  Ella also practiced her archery with her Nerf bow.  It was a really relaxing weekend which was a nice change from our usually busy schedule.

I’m going to really make an effort to ensure our garden’s success this year.  I’m employing Ella as our gardening supervisor so she will oversee the watering and make sure I tend to the garden regularly.  This is a necessary job.  In her words, “Yea, I have to or it’s gonna die.”  I’m planning on writing monthly posts on our progress so look out for those if you’re interested in seeing how our garden grows.

Our activities this weekend included sowing several varieties of seeds.  I’m certainly not opposed to starting seedlings indoors and then transplanting, but since our weather allows for direct sowing I take full advantage of that.  I’m not an expert at gardening so it’s quite possible that skipping the extra step might be bad.  However, this is the way my dad (excellent gardner!) does it so I’m following his footsteps on this one.

I’m really hoping and praying that we end up with not only a living garden, but a prolific one because I’m really excited about the vegetables and herbs we’re growing.  Here’s what we planted:

Sweet Basil - Fresh is so much better than store-bought.  I can’t wait to make to some delicious Caprese sandwiches!

Cucumbers - We are all fans of cucumbers so they were a must.  I remember growing my own cucumber plant when I was little.  The seeds and instructions came in a McDonald’s Happy Meal.  Can we bring that back for the kids??

Rosemary - I love rosemary.  The smell.  The taste.  Everything.  I especially love adding it to the potatoes we wrap in foil and throw on the BBQ during the summer.

Cilantro - Cilantro is essential since it can be used in so many types of foods.  I even chop it up and put it into salads as another green.

Heirloom Tomatoes - These are the stars of farmers’ markets for me (along with avocados because I just can’t get enough avocado!).  I’m hoping they adapt well to containers because I’m really looking forward to these.

Tricolor Cherry Tomatoes - What’s better than pulling a bite-sized tomato off the vine for summertime snack?  Ella and I thought the tricolor variety would be more fun than all reds so we picked these up.  I know she and Hendrix will really enjoy eating them.

Tom Thumb Lettuce - Garden-fresh lettuce will be great for salads.  This variety is different from last year’s which was a loose-leaf type.  This variety will grow in heads instead.

Serrano Peppers - J and I are lovers of spicy food so having peppers on-hand will be awesome.  I plan on using them in chili, eggs, salsas, guacamole… The list goes on.

English Daisies - I almost forgot about these!  I’m finally starting to come around to the idea of flowers.  I’m not sure why but I’ve never really been into flowers - like in general, in life.  I’ll probably buy some other varieties in the near future just to add some color and cuteness to our garden.

Please feel free to leave me comments, gardening tips, links to your gardening blog posts or photos or anything else you want to leave me in the comments section below.  In addition to our garden, we also want to create a gym section (which we already loosely have in place), a play area for the kids and a place for outdoor dining so I’ll probably be blogging about the development of those areas in the future as well.  Thanks for reading!!  I hope you had a wonderful weekend too.

<3 n

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