Vegetable Gardening -Which Plants to Choose, Part 2

When I started my new vegetable garden, spring of 2010, I had a lot to learn. How should I plant, what should I plant, and how to grow these different plants? It was overwhelming at first, until I figured out how to go about it. I planted a myriad of different plants to try to get an idea of which vegetables I would enjoy growing. In my post How to Plan a New Vegetable Garden, What to Plant; Part 1 I wrote about how I experienced growing a variety of different vegetables, such as tomatoes, corn, potatoes, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans and carrots. And in the following link you’ll find my post on how my husband build our awesome fence to keep animals out. In this post, Part 2, I will continue down the list, and cover what my initial thoughts were regarding bell pepper, jalapeño pepper, chives, parsley, dill, basil, leeks, scallions (green onions), romaine lettuce, spinach, strawberries, sun flowers, and I will link to previous posts about my experience with garlic. In the weeks and months to come, I will post more detailed information about many of these various vegetable plants. Though I’m not a big pepper person, I decided to try some just for the fun of it. I found that bell peppers and jalapeño peppers were easy and fun to grow, but I also found that purchased plants produced far better than my plants from seed. […] Read more »

How to Plan a New Vegetable Garden, What to Plant; Part 1

2010 was a year of much learning for me as I took on my first year of in-ground gardening with vegetables. Up until then I had for the most part only grown tomatoes in pots, so I had a lot to learn in order to get a new vegetable garden going. We also needed a proper fence to keep animals out, which my husband built for me; here’s the post with a picture tutorial on the fence he put up. I decided I wanted to try a fairly large variety of plants in order to learn what I would enjoy working with, and what would end up with a good yield for me. While planning, there were several big questions: What to do in order to put in a garden in the first place, which vegetables to choose, and how to plant and grow them. It seemed like a daunting project!! But after studying one plant at a time, I found that it was quite doable after all! I will do a quick break-down in this post on each plant and why I did or didn’t enjoy growing them. Later I will go through and describe in more detail things I have learned along the way on some of these plants, and some handy tips to be aware of. Some helpful links will be found in this post. Tomatoes was a given, so I planted a ton of plants from […] Read more »

Blueberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake Recipe; Pictures Show How

  Soft, moist, and delicate, this cake goes great with a cup of black coffee. Hence the name Coffee Cake. My dear friend Kelly shared this recipe with me, and I’m always excited when I serve it. With a subtle crunch from the streusel topping, it has a clean taste of the fine ingredients added. There is no vanilla; “Whaaat??? No vanilla?” you may ask. Vanilla is heavenly tasting. I’m one of the biggest fans of it, and usually more is better in my opinion. However, if vanilla is added to just about every single dessert you make, it sort of loses its charm a little bit, don’t you think? Or maybe not, but it’s a thought worth considering, at least. I’ll continue on that trail just a little bit: What I have found is that certain recipes are better without vanilla, because it allows you to focus more on the other flavorful ingredients, such as butter and cream cheese. If you have to have your vanilla kick, then by all means add some! But I will make this cake without. So the recipe calls for blueberries; does that mean it has to be blueberries only? Not as far as I have found. I tried raspberries, and it was great! I can only imagine that other berries or fruits will work wonderfully as well. If you do try this recipe, I would really appreciate a quick comment with a star […] Read more »

Planning a New Vegetable Garden

  Winter of 2010 I started seriously thinking about the possibility of putting in a vegetable garden. It had been on my mind for several years to try my hands at gardening, but with three young children I didn’t feel I had the time or energy for it. So it remained a future dream. Now, in 2010, I finally felt that the time had come. But where to start? How to plan and go about it? The task seemed overwhelming, so much to learn and do, and there was so much information out there that I didn’t know where to begin! January became February, and I still didn’t have a clue what to do and where to start; it was easier to put things off and not really do anything until the soil was workable anyway. February gave way to March, and by then I had seen packets of seeds at the store, and excitingly picked up a few different ones. It all looked so fun to try! Soon thereafter I met a neighbor who had years of gardening experience. I told her about my plans, and that I thought it would be neat to plant tomatoes from seed. “Well, you’ve got to get started then, tomatoes take a long time!” she said. So that was a little kick to get me started. She gave me some advice on what to do, and before I knew it, I had little […] Read more »