Rosey the Riveter

Monday, April 29, 2013

A Walk Around the Homestead

It's the end of April, and I realized I never did a 'March' walk around the homestead, so I am over-do.  This week brought the first of the Knock-Out roses.  I was afraid I over-pruned, as I never know what I am doing, but the new growth came fast and furious and I am thrilled to be greeted with yellow roses at my front door.  They were my grandmother's favorites.

Both of my lilacs came back, which was exciting!  I've been told they don't grow well here, but my Bloomerang is in a pot on the deck and the Persian Lilac I rescued from the almost-dead clearance section at Lowe's is doing fine, too. 
And lo and behold, the rhubarb!!!  This is another thing that doesn't grow here in Hampton Roads, but three of my plants came back and are doing well, so I am hoping to be able to make some locavore Strawberry-Rhubarb Jam!
The herb beds are very green!  In the closest bed, from right to left, there's Borage, Oregano, Lemon Balm, Thyme, Sage, Chives, and Rosemary.  You can't see the Lemon Verbena which just started to poke it's head up (I didn't think it was going to, as technically, it's only a perennial in zones 9 and 10), the yarrow, and Slo-Bolt cilantro that I just transplanted.  In the back bed, from right to left, there's parsley, chocolate mint in containers, Horehound, German Chamomile, and Lavender.  You can't see the Stevia which came back (again, it's supposed to be a zone 9-10 perennial), and the sunflowers that will eventually shade the chamomile and protect it from the hot sun.
 Here we have a mish-mash... a stray onion, some radishes that are going to seed, a carrot I left from the winter for the early Swallowtails, some carrot seedlings, another Lemon Balm, lettuce, and peas.  There's a lot of stuff here you can't see, either, including Calendula and more sunflowers to protect the spinach from the heat.  The unpruned grapevine grows along the back fence... and I transplanted from Hubbard Squash that popped up in the compost pile to grow on the trellis.
On the left, there's a ton of garlic and scallions.  The front right is some potatoes, an echinacea, more lettuce, and peas in the background... there are peppers in here, too, along with more calendula, zinnia, and nasturtium.  On this trellis will grow some watermelon volunteers that sprouted from the one plant I grew last year in that blue bin.  I transplanted them into the garden and we'll see how they grow.  I had NO intentions of growing any vining plants whatsoever, but so it goes.
It's a peach!  There are only a few, but it's only the second year I've had the tree, so that's really all it can hold.
The Homestead Verbena is holding its own, despite being over-run last summer with Bermuda Grass.  It's much more of a problem this year than it has been, but I am declaring an early war. 

It's been a much cooler spring than last year... we just picked our first strawberries on Saturday... so things are slower going, but that's ok.  I'd rather have cool than hot.

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