Let's Get Dirty

A gardening blog for adults who still love to play in the dirt.

Send stories and pictures of your horticultural adventures to letsgetdirty@gjsentinel.com.

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This worked, too

By Penny Stine
Thursday, August 22, 2013

It's easy to see what worked in the garden this time of year. Although this pic conveys the general mess that my garden is, it also shows that several things worked this year. 

Using old tomato cages as a climbing toy for cucumbers: success!

Scattering marigold and zinnia seeds willy-nilly to add splashes of color: success!

Pulling all the silly amaranth because I had too much of it: Fail!  (oh well... it kind of looks like one of those giant foam pointing hands, doesn't it? Who should complain about that in her garden?) 

Eventually getting red tomatoes: success!

Yes, I will include all that stuff that didn't work quite as well as planned, but let me celebrate success for a few more days.

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Dilly beans always work

By Penny Stine
Tuesday, August 20, 2013

I discovered dilly beans a few years ago. They're easy to make and oh, so tasty to eat. I forgot to make them last year, so when my friend, Jan of the awesome garden, asked me if I wanted a bag of green beans from her garden, I said yes! 

My garden is producing green beans enough to eat frequently and freeze in small batches, but when making dilly beans, it's nice to have enough to actually fill seven jars. Which I did last night.  I used garlic, dill and red Fresno peppers from my garden to give them some bite. 

Yay! First canning of the season... it's so nice to see those canning shelves start to fill back up. 

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This worked…

By Penny Stine
Monday, August 19, 2013

Nothing long-winded today; I have way too much to do. But check this out... yes, this is a cucumber that I planted next to a shoe rack next to a blue spruce tree that's in the middle of my biggest garden area. I hoped the cucumber would grow all over the shoe rack and would find its way to the blue spruce, which it would climb and give me cucumbers hanging from a blue spruce tree.

I don't know if you can see it or not, but there's a red Sikkim cucumber that looks ready to pick hanging from the vine that's hanging from the blue spruce. Cool, huh?

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The mysteries of squash

By Penny Stine
Friday, August 16, 2013

My mom gave me some seeds from a pink winter squash she grew last summer. She said the squash was prolific and it had a great taste. So I planted it in my backyard garden box. Yes, the same one with the amaranth. 

Unlike the rest of my garden spaces, where I scattered various squash seeds all over the place and now can't remember which ones are summer squash and which ones are winter squash, I only planted the pink winter squash in that particular bed. 

It hasn't turned pink yet, but it is looking sort of coral. Mom's got bigger and pinker as fall progressed, so I'm hoping this one will, too. 

 

I also found this in the same garden box.  It looks like a tiny butternut squash to me, which is funny, because I didn't plant butternut squash in this bed. Ever, even though it grew in the bed last year, too. Last year, I harvested at least 3 butternut squash out of the bed even though I planted seeds from a giant hubbard (given to me by my mom, of course). 

In my other garden, I've got a green pattypan squash plant growing in the bed where I already harvested my garlic. I planted yellow pattypan this year and green pattypan last year. The seed must not have gotten the message to grow last season, but caught on sometime this season. Maybe the smell of all that garlic growing around it spurred it to action. That will wake up anybody. 

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August flowers

By Penny Stine
Wednesday, August 14, 2013

As anyone who reads this knows, I garden to eat. I love flowers, but I don't like to spend a lot of money on them. Nor do I want to spend a lot of time coaxing them. 

 

Any flowers growing in my garden have to be pretty self-sufficient, which meaans they're either perennials that bloom once a year or annuals that sow themselves willy-nilly all over the place, like this amaranth growing in a small garden box in my back yard. There's also squash, green beans, tomatoes and a few tomatillos (that also came up on their own) in the planting box. Oh, and plenty of grass, too.

 

 

 

I did actually dig this morning glory up from where it had sowed itself and replanted it in this pot because I wanted it to do exactly what it's doing. It's so nice when plants behave and do that.

And so rare.

Kinda like kids...

 

 

 

 

 

 

I scattered a few marigold and zinnia seeds that I collected from last year's flowers out in front of my main garden. Most of the perennials in my garden bloom earlier in the spring, so marigolds and zinnias add nice annual color later in the summer and into the fall. As does the amaranth, which tends to grow wherever it wants to. 

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Page 62 of 147




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