Seedlings 2010; Photo by The Professor

Musical pairing – Waitin’ on a Sunny Day by Bruce Springsteen
This is the time of year when I get antsy to get outside and dig in the dirt – and it’s been a particularly llllooonnngggg winter; in fact, I’d dare say it’s been quite the winter for lots of folks.  But when I see my West Coast and Southern food bloggers waxing poetic about their strawberry shortcakes with Chantilly cream, fava bean salads, spring risottos with asparagus or rhubarb cakes, I must admit I get a wee bit jealous and begin plotting my exodus from the cold Midwest . . . and if my mother-in-law is reading this . . . I’m kidding . . . sort of . . .

We’ve always had lovely flower gardens complete with a Koi pond, roses, hydrangeas, purple cone flowers, black-eyed susans, phlox, peonies and such but last summer The Professor and I planted a vegetable garden.   Filled with goodies like carrots, beets, patty-pan zucchini, onions and broccoli;  we also planted 4 extra large pots with tomatoes, eggplant, radishes, lettuce and kale.  And we planted strawberry beds, some rhubarb, a blueberry and raspberry bush and a peach tree.  Needless-to-say, we ate very well and still managed to catch the farmer’s market almost every Saturday – it’s one of our very favorite things to do when the weather turns nice!

Water Lily 'Colorado' 2009; Photo by The Professor
Resident Bullfrog 2009; Photo by The Professor

This year we, The Professor, started our plants from seeds using a couple of Aerogardens which we’ll then transplant into the pots and garden bed we dug last year, but we also purchased a 4’x8′ raised bed which also acts like a cold frame/greenhouse.  We are super excited about it and I’ll be blogging about our garden experience right here.  I’m no expert when it comes to gardening but if you have any questions I’ll try to answer them or if you’d like to share your own gardening experiences, I’d love to hear from you!

Here’s a list of what we’ll be growing this year:   celery, kale, san marzano tomatoes, yellow pear tomatoes, red onion, sweet and hot peppers, fennel, lettuce, arugula, kale, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, potatoes, eggplant, cauliflower, carrots, beets, radishes, butternut squash, cucumbers, green beans, swiss chard and a variety of herbs.  Uhm . . . putting this list together makes me wonder if The Professor got carried away??!!  I don’t know whether to be excited or exhausted???

I’ll be making jams and jellies as well a pickling some of the veg and I may break out my canning skills from years ago – again I’ll share our experience with all of you!

Radishes 2009; Photo by Smith Bites
Carrots 2009; Photo by Smith Bites
Onions/Beets 2009; Photo by Smith Bites

I’ve got my garden gloves and shoes dusted off and am ready to go when the ground warms up but for now, I’m just going to have to settle with looking at these pictures taken of last year’s garden.

Will you be gardening this year, big or small?

Eggplant 2009; Photo by Smith Bites
Raspberries 2009; Photo by Smith Bites

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  1. great pics..jams and jellies can’t wait


  2. Woa – 2 wks of non-stop rain probably didn’t help! You’ll have to let me know what made it!

  3. Great pictures, and I’m looking forward to your gardening updates! I got a lot of my seedlings into the ground a couple of weeks ago, just in time for two weeks of non-stop rain! We’ll see what made it and what rotted, I guess!

  4. Jess ~ I tell you, there’s just something about getting dirt under your fingernails and smelling dirt that is just plain exciting! I hope you can find a sunny window so that you can plant some herbs!

    Elizabeth – I’m sad too that your parents gave up gardening; living in the country, we have had to battle the critters: raccoons, groundhogs and rabbits – all of whom have helped themselves to our crops. It’s a bit frustrating to be sure, but I shall prevail! Plant some containers with herbs – you’ll love it!

  5. I miss my parents’ garden–they used to grow strawberries, peas, tomatoes, peppers and beans every year, but it got too difficult between the critters and the waning sunshine in that part of the yard, so they got rid of it last year. 🙁

    Your photos are lovely and I’m very impressed with the spread you’re planting! I might try again with the container gardening since we have spots outside our window that could theoretically hold containers for some herbs…but we shall see.

  6. Look at those gorgeous veggies! Makes me wish that I had access to a public garden plot or even a balcony in my apartment, I miss growing things – especially delicious things.

  7. Thanks so much Gwen – we are so fortunate to have a garden; and in my humble opinion, herbs can take a dish to a whole new level!!

  8. Beautiful pictures. It is wonderful to have a garden. I am lucky to get enough space for a few herbs!

  9. Grace ~ Some vegetables will do really, really well in containers so I say go for it! Check out – a great resource for container gardening.

    Are you KIDDING ME?!! You met, hugged and KISSED Bruce Springsteen??? SWOON!

    And thank you for your kind words about the site – I really appreciate it.

  10. p.s. love link to Bruce’s music, he is my absolute favourite, I remember my little trip to his house and being run off and then directed to where we could meet him, he was amazing about the whole thing and we got a hug & kiss for the shenanigans.

  11. I am so envious. I haven’t had a vegetable garden in years. When we first moved to this home I was working so many hours and decided to have a low maintenance yard and we didn’t leave room in case situation changed. I long for fresh veggies. I have been thinking about doing some container planting with vegetables but am not sure if it would work. By the way I love the look of your site and the photos are beautiful.

  12. My rhubarb is coming up now too Maria – I am so excited! I’ll be looking for some gardening posts on your site as well!

  13. Love your photos! I am so excited for spring and garden season. We plan on planting a few things. Our rhubarb is coming up now:)

  14. Oh Beth ~ I’m sooooo happy that the sun actually came out again! New life is exciting indeed!

  15. I can’t wait to see what my garden holds this year and to see more pictures of your bounty! I agree that it’s been a long winter & seeing some new life is so exciting.

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