Join me on the journey of growing our garden

This is the beginning of my blog, and we’re in the middle of summer and my favorite part of gardening. Getting to eat the fruit of our labour! Here is just some of the yummy home grown veggies we’ve been blessed to be eating.

Boy about to eat a raspberry.

Snacking on juicy raspberries.

Produce from the home garden.

Produce from the home garden.

In a nutshell, our home gardening journey:

This summer we’ve had a bit cooler weather along with a good bit of rain. This means we weren’t able to swim at the lake early on the season, but it has made an abundant harvest.

Full garden in July

Very green July garden jungle.

The work has paid off, mostly, we do have a family of chipmunks that did dig up and eat my whole row of okra seedlings 🙁

We start our seeds in small pots in the winter. In fact, for school, we studied botany, so the kids made a “light box” to help the seeds grow into plants. We had great results at first until 40% of our first batch then died. No quitting though. After ordering some more seeds from Annies Heirloom Seed catalog, we tried again and had great results. We used Garden’s Alive coir bricks that we mix with some of our own soil that we compost in the backyard.

It is so important to garden with organic, nonGMO seeds and even better to use heirloom seeds, all of which can keep you, the soil and the bees healthy. That is why I have searched for companies that sell those types of sustainable products.

Annie’s Heirloom Seeds are out of MI, close to IL; that way the seeds should grow well in my garden.
When the ground finally gets warm enough and hopefully the snow is gone from Illinois for the season, I put in a row of peas, bean and lettuce and possibly kale. This is even before I’d till the garden.Those veggies can start to germinate when it’s still cold and tend to be frost resistant.

Shortly after Mother’s Day is when you’re safe to start planting the rest of your seeds and once there’s no foreseeable frost, store-bought plants can get in the ground. I bought some plants from Azure Standard, our food co-op, and then some from Countryside.

Now about those darn chipmunks… I have to use a “cloche” on many seedlings or seeds to keep them from eating up what doesn’t belong to them.

Spring garden beginnings.

Spring garden beginnings.

My cloches are just a plastic milk jug with the bottom cut off.  I wish we could just rent a cat for the growing season.

My garden in the spring, lettuce, asparagus, trellis & a milk jug cloche

Milk jug cloche in the spring garden.

About MamaDrenda

Daughter to my Creator & Savior; Wife to my honey, Cam; Mama & teacher to 5 great kids. On a growing journey to whole foods, a whole home with whole hearts… and anything else intriguing along the way!