Country Living Series

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Garden update

Despite the cool wet start to summer, the garden has actually done very well this year. Here's a walk-through.

Grapes. They're not ripe yet, of course, but show a lot of promise. There's just nothing prettier than grape vines.

Herbs. I grow parsley, thyme, sage, oregano, basil, rosemary, spearmint, and horseradish. Here's the parsley, starting to go to seed. I'll save some of the seeds for our next homestead, but in the meantime it will seed its own bed for next year's crop.


Spearmint. This is my garden candy. I actually don't care for mint tea in any form, but I simply adore the smell. This lush bed started from one small plant I impulsively bought a few years ago at a local hardware store, and it spread to fill an enormous tire with perfume. (One of the advantages to gardening in tires it it's easy to contain things that like to spread, like mint.)

Rosemary and basil.

Raspberries. The fruit season is past, but I have a freezer full of berries.

Blueberries. It's blueberry season, so I'm picking about every other day.

Peas. Their season is also done, of course, and all the peas are in the freezer awaiting cooler weather so I can can them up. These vines are about ready to pull out.

One of the strawberry beds.

Onions. Goodness I love onions.


Garlic. It's definitely ready to harvest.

Tomatoes. Lots of green fruit, and a few ripe ones.

I planted lots of dry beans this year -- Navy and pinto.

The orchard is doing very well.




(No hazelnuts yet. They take a few years to mature.)

Okay, I guess I'm done with excuses, I really need to go harvest the garlic.

[Bonus feature: Here's an article on the therapeutic power of gardening.]


  1. Hello, great garden! What do you do to get such great looking fruit trees and grapes? My peaches haven't looked good for the last couple years and my grapes never get that big, as critters get them while I'm waiting for them to ripen. Do you use any sort of spray on them or what? I'm in Zone 6A. Thanks! Amanda

    1. Peach trees need to be sprayed with copper sulfate in November or so, and perhaps in the spring before flowering, against leaf curl. Other than that, we have a completely organic garden. Once in a while I use neem oil (a bio pesticide) against aphids or flea beetles, but that's it.

      - Patrice

  2. I too love mint and would grow purely for the smell (I do like the tea as well).

  3. A wonderful garden update as usual. :) One thing I don't think I've ever heard you mention is garden insect pests or fungal-type issues. Are those not issues for you? We planted our first garden this year in Texas and everything was decimated by either a bug or a fungus. Our jalapenos did well but we don't even use them much, lol.

    1. I think in part because we garden in tires, we don't have too many pests. We don't have slugs, snails, or voles. We do get flea beetles on the horseradish every couple of years, but neem oil takes care of them. And aphids tend to eat the broccoli and Brussels sprouts. I didn't feel like battling them this year, so I didn't plant any.

      - Patrice

  4. I was wondering two things. When are your pears ready for picking and what do you cover your strawberry beds with in the winter? Thank you.

    1. Sadly our pear trees became afflicted with fire blight and it killed the bigger tree. The smaller tree is hanging on by the skin of its teeth. It's a huge loss.

      We don't do anything to the strawberry beds in winter. They die back and then regrow on their own.

      - Patrice