Sweet Potato update

After the digging was done we weighed the potatoes there was a total of 262.20 #s of sweet potatoes.

I have enclosed a picture of a few buckets of potatoes. These are 7 gallons and 20-gallon containers.

Andrew and Adrian helped dig one day and Karina and Sophia help dig another day. For kids, it’s like a treasure hunt digging for potatoes.

We had some potatoes that were almost 7#s each and others that were 15″ long. None of these have been stringy I think the stringy potatoes must be old because it has nothing to do with the size we have cooked some big ones.

My husband over plants everything so we end up with plenty of vegetables to give to family and friends. Our freezer is full of squash, peppers, leeks, and onions. Some have been grilled some baked.

He gave one of his friends 50#s of potatoes to share with his family. We gave our daughter Jeanelle about 25#s but she will be back for more.

I have made 3 sweet potatoes pies using my grandmother’s recipe, 2 to give away one to share. I also made a cream cheese sweet potato cake that was the best cake I have had in a long time we shared that with Jeanelle and their family. I made some sweet potato pecan bread that turned out really good. We are trying to be creative around here.

We have been eating sweet potatoes at least 2 x a week. I want to try and cook some Hasselback ones.

I did read you can bake, cool, peel, and freeze so I might do some of that but I need that second freezer.

Fall tilling and planting has started so before you know it we will be overrun with cabbage lol.

Blooms

My favorite part of the spring and summertime is when everything is blooming.

These day lilies always put on a show.

Potting bench update

The potting bench is painted and stained to match the house.

There is a large bucket for dirt on the left hand side under the bench. This is actually under a part that lifts up with hardware cloth and there is a tray to catch the excess dirt so it can go back in the bigger pot.

I actually love it and as you can tell its been getting used quite often.

In the wintertime I always put the fragile pots in the greenhouse and sometimes the plants live but sometimes they don’t. The ones on the bench the small fern on the left lived the big pot was repotted and now is thriving.

I always think about moving these after I have watered them and they are very heavy to move then.

I buy the small bowls at Dollar General or on clearance to have to put plants in for small gifts.

The aloe vera or some of the other succulents or sedums like lemon balm work well in the bowls. Right now on the back porch I have a few with airplane plants in them. Even the pothos or Ivy work well for a good while in the small containers.

The plastic wicker chair has seen its better days its been around about 10 years and I had bought 6 of them at Big Lots they use to be on the back porch until the rockers rotted off so we took those off and now its a very short chair to sit in. I just like the way it looks by the potting bench.

The trumpet vine graces the top of the back of the potting bench as a garland of sorts but it gives the bench the perfect touch.

Planting new plants in the yards or in planters is very relaxing for me and it soothes my soul.

More blooms in our yard

Here are a few more blooms from our yard. We plant all colors of flowers but have more pinks and purples than anything else.

These first flowers are Petchoa it is a new cross between the Petunia and the Calibrochoa. Since I love both of these flowers I wanted to try this one out this year.

This planter is one my hypertufa one in the backyard I had made a few years ago using a exercise ball for the mold. Normally I plant petunias in it. So far the container has held up okay but I have learned a few things about making these planters to try next time. A tree limb fell on my one in the front yard and broke it.

The second flower is the Rose of Sharon also known as Althea. I love althea and this week will be going to the garden center to find a few more colors of this colorful bush. This Althea was shared with me by a twig with rooting solution and it has grown like crazy ever since. These blooms remind me of the Hibiscus.

The third flower is one of my favorites the Knock our Roses. They bloom like crazy in the spring and summer and if you want them to bloom more they love left over tea grinds. We save all our tea grinds for our acid loving plants.

The garden

Our garden has been doing great this year that is until all this rain hit us the last few weeks.

To much rain makes the ground soggy and when the sun comes out it steams the plants so they go through a spurt of looking like heck for awhile. Hopefully the tomatoes survive it seems like we waited so long for good tomatoes.

We have given away about 100#s of produce so far mainly yellow squash, zucchini squash and cucumbers. We have put quite a bit up in our freezer and eaten squash 2-3 x a week since it started making. We eats lots of cucumbers and tomatoes as well. I made some zoodles to put up as well.

We put up 7 quarts of dill pickles yesterday that is only the start.

We share a good amount with Jacks brother, sister n law and mother n law. My mother n law loves tomatoes.

This pic is from a few days of picking this was not quite all of the squash and cucumbers but it was enough to make a good picture. We had eaten a few tomatoes already as well it is so hard not to eat them they taste so so good.

Jack has put a lot of time into the garden this year and it has really paid off. I think we have 53 tomato plants maybe more. My favorite tasting one is the mater sandwich and beef steak.

Planting a garden and watching it grow brings us both great pleasure. Sharing with friends and family makes it even better.

Getting to photograph the harvest really makes my day.

1015 Onion Bloom

This was our first year for onions and this was our only onion bloom it is a 10/15 onion.

Not all onions bloom and the bloom is where the seeds are at. If you get no blooms you either buy more seeds or onion sets for the next planting.

These blooms are similar looking to garlic blooms just different color flowers. These two pics were taken 2 different days so you can see the progress of the changing flowers.

All gardens have beauty even before the harvest.

Onions Galore

We have been growing onions for the first time this year.

There are yellow, red, bunch onions as well as 1015 onions a Texas Favorite. What we have learned is you need to thin out or move onions especially the red ones because they quickly become over crowded.

Here are are few pics of them bursting up out of the dirt in the raised beds and one picture of the pretty stalks.

Onions are ready to pick when the stalks turn yellow and fall over these are getting really close. Thank goodness we have family that love onions.

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” ( Audrey Hepburn).

Potting bench progress

My potting bench is started and I am quite excited about having this thing.

I always pot and repot my stuff in different containers and I am always buying new stuff to plant in containers and rooting stuff for containers.

Jack made this bench 8ft x 2ft with a sink, faucet, and a dirt area where you do not have to waste your dirt you sweep it back into the container. There is a lower shelf for larger pots and supplies. There are hooks on the back for hanging my garden tools and a shelf to put some extra small pots and supplies.

Pics will be coming soon.

Life is good in Texas and springtime is on its way.

The yard and garden

We spent the day working in the backyard and part of the front.

The yard seriously needs some rehab since the freeze everything is getting cut back and will have new buds soon enough.

We ran the leaf rake pull behind the lawnmower thingy and dumped it 6 times from leaves in the front yard. He then places the leaves between the rows in the garden and as they decompose the dirt gets raked up on the rows.

On top of that, we planted 22 tomato plants, bell pepper plants, seeds for yellow squash, zucchini squash, cucumbers, and potatoes. We still have some hot peppers to get planted and some marigold flowers to keep bugs away as well as some basil to plant between the tomato plants to enhance the flavor of the tomatoes.

We already have onions that survived the freeze and are growing well. We even have some cabbage that made it.

Jack did get a new area for Okra but we are not planting as much as last year I got so tired of picking okra.

I went to 3 garden centers over the last week looking for Vinca flowers and there are none to be found yet. I wanted the Vinca because they bloom from now until freeze. They never look wilted or windblown. I did see the Dianthus and may end up with some more of those they are pretty hardy as well.

He tilled one of the raised beds by the barn and there was 15″ earthworms in there they were HUGE. They make the dirt perfect for planting vegetables.

When springtime rolls around we never stop I am always needing some color in the yard and Jack is always anxious to get the garden planted. Today I am using one of the free photos we have access to on WordPress.

We have spring fever in Texas and today was a beautiful day.

Photo by Laureen Raftopulos on Pexels.com

Aloe Vera Bloom

Years ago my mom gave me some of her big Aloe Vera. This was a very old plant but I am not sure how old.

A few years ago it bloomed then again last year and now there are blooms all over several plants this year.

I have about 8 pots of the Aloe Vera scattered around the backyard plus Jack has about 30 pots in the greenhouse that are ready to be sold.

They are suppose to bloom 1 x a year but I think there are a lot of factors that go into them blooming.

Aloe Vera is very easy to grow and it likes to be neglected and not over watered.

Our two youngest granddaughters who are 6 years old Karina and Sophia love plants so I have given them several of the plants we had rooted. They have airplane plants, ivy, and aloe vera and they have quite the green thumbs like their mom does. They keep them on an Ikea Cart and roll them in and out of the sunshine indoors and sometimes they take them out on the front porch.

A simple plant that has several medicinal uses creates such a beautiful bloom even if it is only one time a year.

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