Home Garden Tour – My Garden
These home garden tours are the journals of my garden (Ontario, Canada) which I started from scratch in the spring of 2011.
What a difference two years makes! Despite two very odd springs—last year was very hot, way too early and this year it’s been cold and damp—the garden is coming along. If you’re starting a new project like this, always take BEFORE phots so you can see the progress.
I started with this two years ago:
Want to see the future? Here it is in 2016.
There’s a very large walnut tree to the left of the shed which looks nice but doesn’t allow anything growing near it, so I started all of the new garden beds closer to the house.
If you would like more details on beginning the garden and what to do when you have big, blank slate, the story of how I started the garden has lots of detail and step by step progress photos.
The photos (below) are from May and early June (2013). It’s been a very odd spring: we’ve had both very hot and cold spells with some frost just last week which killed a lot of new growth. This is the first June I can remember where I won’t be surprised if it actually snows. The weather has been anything but typical.
As a gardener you eventually learn that there is no such thing as ideal growing weather. Each type of plant has its own preferences and, depending on the year, some will thrive and others will not. So far this year, anything that likes cold is doing just fine.
The Spring Garden
Here’s the garden in early May. At this time last year my poppies were in bloom and my raised veggie beds were ready for spring harvest. Not so much this year. It still looks like winter at this point.
Here it is just a few weeks later. You can tell we’ve had good amount of rain by how green everything is. My spring tasks have included relocating four large raised veggie beds, lots of edging, weeding, and moving plants, and installing a new (to me) arbour. (That big white thing in the middle right of the photo is the pool ladder. If it ever warms up, I will open the pool….)
One of my favourite things about this time of year is the way the few blooming flowers totally steal the show. This red clematis is a fine example:
You know when you get a new garden plant and you have vision of how you want it to look in the garden? Well these pink lupines have fulfilled my wishes with remarkable precision. They make this part of the garden shine:
In early May the entire garden had the scent of apple blossoms. There is nothing quite so delicate and intoxicating as that. The blossoms are gorgeous, and, as only nature can do, within weeks the wee apple fruits have quietly taken their place. I should enjoy seeing them now because it’s a good bet that the squirrels will eat every last one before they ever reach maturity:
My Jersey Giant asparagus is just in its second year, yet it now stands about 8 feet tall! (It’s grown about two more feet since I took this photo in May.) The weather was so goofy I kept second-guessing the time to pick a few spears and totally missed out. Next year I’ll get it right.
I’ve been searching for a while to find a new arbour for the middle of the garden. The temporary one I made two years ago was kind of rickety so I put it back in the asparagus bed where I could anchor it to the sides of the raised bed (and, ahem, block the neighbour’s view into our yard).
My favourite local junk man sold me my new arbour for $10 including delivery. Woot! It needed to be secured with some wood screws and I added some wood to the base where the old wood had rotted away. I wanted to stain it black but I had a lot of leftover taupe from another project so taupe it is. It looks fine and it sure beats paying $200 for a new one.
The only thing thriving in the veggie beds right now is the brassicas. I started various types of broccoli, kale, and Brussels sprouts from seed a while ago and they are coming along very nicely. My salad greens and peas are very slow this year. Last year I was already on my second batch by June. Boo for this year!
All in all, the garden is off to a very slow start. However, my one very exciting bit of news is, my pond is full of tadpoles. I have never had the honour of a frog (or frogs) finding and using any of my garden ponds so this is a real treat. A visual treat, that is, not something I would eat!
We heard the mating calls about a week and a half ago – very loud in the late evening – and now, sure enough, the babies are swimming around. I’m going to try and monitor it to see how many actually survive to froghood. It’s very cool indeed.
And that concludes this late spring garden tour. We will get warm summer weather eventually, right?