Container Garden Update - Life in an RV Blog at - 179269

Life in an RV

Container Garden Update 
Jun. 7, 2010 4:10 pm 
Updated: Jun. 20, 2010 4:32 pm
Life is good today. I'll give you a little tour as I make my rounds. We go out the door and onto the steps, turn left and see... This! I'm pretty happy with my little junk container garden and how it's doing. We were thinking that we were going to lose our tomatoes and peppers to aphids, but a trip to Lowe's and a bottle of insectidal soap later, there is some hope.

And, for the love of Mike, if anyone knows what this is, would you please let me know?? The neighbor that left and was so kind as to leave me her cat also left this growing in a jar, so I took pity on it and repotted into actually dirt instead of sand, but I don't know if it's a cucumber, a squash or a pumpkin...any help? Or is it just going to be a Wait & See plant?

We did some revamping today. I pulled out all of my radishes and the lettuce. The radishes were extremely "woody" and inedible and the lettuce was starting to bolt. So the lady down 4 or 5 trailers took what we pulled out to feed to her bunny. So I'm happy it wasn't wasted! But the arugula and chard were extremely bitter and Bob & I found we just didn't care for that particular mix of lettuce and Bob was a bit over-zealous when he planted the seeds and planted the entire packet! The lettuce was a bit over the top!! We got a couple of new packets of seeds and I was more conservative in my planting approach, I only sowed 1/4 of the packet! Here is from left to right, front row: culinary lavendar, French tarragon, loveage and chervil. Back row is the wait & see plant, and various pepper plants. I hope the peppers make a come back after getting a good dose of insectidal soap (great for organic gardening, the bottle said)!

Peppers and Apache red onions...These are pepperoncinis.

Double duty wading pool...not only good for growing onions, but also Johnny-jump-ups, because the friend that was so kind to bring us a truckload of dirt dug the dirt where these were growing. When they get a little bigger, I'll scrape up the grass on the side of the RV and plant them there! They spread like weeds!!

Here are various peppers and a pathetic looking sage plant that got WAY too much rain! Poor guy, he got a dose of soap, too! And there is my new geranium. I know I said I wasn't going to have any flowers this year, but I changed my = beauty = happiness. And I'd rather be happy!

Ms. Raspberry Bush. She is pretty, and she got a dose of soap, too. If those critters can travel from one tomato to the next and then jump on the peppers, she needs all the help she can get! She has all kinds of blooms on her and I can't wait until the berries start. I will wrestle me some birds if they even try!

This is my gorgeous heliotrope that I got over the weekend at the farmer's market...this attracts butterflies like crazy and has the most awesome vanilla scent to it! Lady Sparkle was kind enough to email me some pictures of her really cool butterfly house, so Bob said he would make me one and a couple of bat houses too...I like having the bats around to eat the mosquitoes.

My herb box...loveage, chervil, marjoram and sorrell. These are going into my cream of seven herb soup when they get a bit bigger, I'll post that recipe then!

My flat-leaf parsley. I've already done one harvest and it's sprouting up for round 2!

Mr. Cilantro...this is a must-have herb for me to use in salsas and especially my shrimp salsa recipe!

This is that very small mint plant that I bought at Ted Westby's store for the Israel blog...look at it go!

I just love red petunias, I don't know why since purple is one of my favorite colors and red isn't even in the top 5! But there is just something breathtaking to me about red petunias, azaleas and rhododendrons....LOVE 'EM! I planted these for my picnic table.

This is my new lobelia plant, I just thought it was pretty and I want to see what it will do...another one of those bright flowers I'm using in hopes of attracting butterflies, bees and hummingbirds.

And in the same box as the lobelia is my pink snapdragon. Now, I hoping he won't outgrow the box, but I think he might because if I remember right, they get super tall but I think the butterflies will be attracted to him!

And one of the tomatillos is blooming!! Super exciting!! Here is a bit of useless but interesting info: the lady at the farmer's market told me that you must have at least 2 tomatillos in order for them to produce because they cross pollinate each other just like marijuana plants do. I don't know about all that, so Cat Hill, if you read this, is that true??

This is my orange thyme. I almost lost this, again, due to heavy rain day after day here...we got some holes drilled in the bottom of the container and OMG! it must have drained for a good 20 minutes or more! And I put a bunch of marbles on the bottom for drainage, but that wasn't enough, it had to have holes!!

More red onions and a few small peppers...these are bell peppers.

That wait & see plant with his neighbor, a pepperoncini...

The lemon cukes are doing fine, I have 3 of them. That end one is so big because we lost one and replaced it with this one that we bought at the farmer's market. I had room in front so I used it for more onions.

I put the 2 tomatillos in the big container I was going to use for potatoes. I planted herbs around them: basil, flat-leaf parsley and chives that I started from seed. I also put my French tarragon plant in there, too.

Remember that truly pathetic dill plant that Ted Westby gave to me? Well, here he is, all tall and proud and doing quite well, I might add! He was on the brink of death and it's amazing what a little TLC will do...he'll go into the pickles I'm planning to make with the lemon cukes! And also into the pickled peppers I'm planning on learning how to make this goal and my 41st birthday present to myself: learn to can!

I ripped out all the old mixed lettuce and went with this jazzy new French variety of butter lettuce, it looks interesting, so I'll keep you updated on it's progress. And if this variety is a bust, Bob & I bought some regular old romaine, too!

So I planted just a mere quarter of a packet of lettuce seeds in the lettuce tub this time around!

And I also planted tomatillo, parsley and basil seeds and I thought the rain had all but killed them off, but here they are pushing through and wanting to grow! Grow little seeds, grow!!

Close up of a tomatillo!

We bought a can of spray paint a few weeks back because I had some crazy scheme to make more bird houses after the blue birds moved in. So we spray painted these gallon jugs purple, it's one of my favorite colors and Bob cut an opening in each one and we hung them around the tree...I don't care if they look stupid, I'm just thinking about trying to get the birds to come!

So here is the garden update...

It's ok, come a little doesn't bite!

And there you have it...Laurrie's garden until next time, here's a super easy recipe that I came up with last night: I'll call it 3 Can Fruit Crisp
1 can sliced peaches in light syrup
1 can mandarin oranges (I used a big can, or just use 2 small ones)
1 can pear halves
Drain all these and put in a bowl and mix in a few tablespoons of flour, about 1/4 cup of sugar, some cinnamon, and some ginger. Put in a baking pan sprayed with non-stick spray. In another bowl, add 3/4 cup oatmeal, 3 tablespoons flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger and mix it up, put on the top of the fruit, dot the top with little pieces of butter, I think I used about 1/4 cup total and bake at 350 for about 20-25 minutes or until top is browned. I made a ginger whip cream for the top: 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream, 1 inch pieces of ginger, grated on a microplane, and 3 tablespoons of powdered sugar. Beat the cream on high until it starts to set, add in the ginger and sugar and continue to beat until stiff. Enjoy, folks and have a great week!

Jun. 7, 2010 4:15 pm
That's pretty crafty WW! Very resourceful.
Jun. 7, 2010 4:26 pm
Another great blog WW. Definately sharing this with my Mom later. ;)
Jun. 7, 2010 4:30 pm
Great pictures as usual.We have so much in common.I love purple too. I use whatevers around for containers and I love animals.Oh and cook too.I've been doing alot of harvesting in the last week.Spinach,lettuce,basil,oregano, green beans and mustard greens for one of my girlfriends.You have a good night and keep smiling.I'll talk to you on the flip-flop.
Jun. 7, 2010 4:31 pm
your recipe you threw together last night sounds YUMMY. Also, the lobelia plant is my favorite! My favorite herbs you are growing are dill & cilantro. You have an awesome garden with the resources you have! Very impressive!
Jun. 7, 2010 4:36 pm
Hi WW, I love your container garden! I have been following you for quite a while, you write so well. You are very entertaining, and I am sure if I was closer, we would be good friends. I am an avid gardener and In the landscape/nursery industry. A CA triple certified Nusery Professional, owned a nursery, landscape biz, was a design assistant. Even had my own live gardening radio talk show. Wanted to tell you a few things that might help with your gardening, make it easier, and to also ease your mind, increase your yield. I noticed in your pictures that your plant babies look a little yellow. Are you on a fertilizing program? Since you are all about containers and that's great, fertilizing becomes even more critical. Nutrients get lost from watering, running out of the drainage holes and get "used up" with the young plant being contained an unable to venture out and find new sources of nutrients. You could go organic, fish emulsion etc... or Miracle gro products are great. I would use a water souble type product, they work faster, and are less likely to burn. The yellowing is a sign of a nitrogen defiency. Nitrogen gets used up very quickly, and leached out even faster. Container gardeners have to fertilze more often. Your garden is so cute. As for the aphids, a common none serious insect, that is easisly killed with the soaps. Also, being a soft bodied lil' bugger, mild infestations can be controled by just spraying them off with your garden hose. They cannot get back up and go back to the plant after you have played hurricane Katrina on them. The biggest problem with aphids is in larger numbers they an bring with them disease. Most the time they are not a serious problem. I also read recently that you were going to make bat houses? How is that coming along? I find bats fascinating. You were making some other nature house too? Don't remember what. Lettuces and all leafy crops become bitter with the rising temps. Cucumbers will do it also. The only cuke I can grow that is not bitter is Lemon Cucumber. I pulled the last of my lettuces up today, to bitter for even the neighbors chickens. Finicky I guess. Totally unedible. Keep us updated as you grow. If I can help with gardening questions, I am around evey day. Thanks for entertaining us!
Jun. 7, 2010 4:43 pm
Looking good! My lettuce is just starting to come up- can't believe you've already had to pull yours! Although, it has just been consistently warm here for less than a month :)
Jun. 7, 2010 4:43 pm
Spent some quality time with my son in our garden today. It's my favorite part of our yard. Had a laugh at the Bat Houses, just because I had a late night visitor fly threw my kitchen last night. He was very cute The "batman" said bats in this area prefer human houses to their own bat house. Lucky me!
Jun. 7, 2010 4:53 pm
Awesome! I think I'm killing my tomatoes and chiles I just planted. How often do you water yours?
Jun. 7, 2010 4:53 pm
I love your garden!!! It just goes to show with a little imagination you can turn anything into a treasure!! Have fun canning all of your amazing produce.
Jun. 7, 2010 5:03 pm
I am so impressed!! Now I want to plant some container gardens!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:09 pm
Hey Peggy...I just gave everyone a big ol' drink of Miracle Gro...thanks for the advice, I can't tell you how much I appreciate that! Lovecakes, if it's sunny out, I water them every evening. Now they will get miracle gro regularly and every Monday, they will get a good spray of insecticidal soap and everyone should be good to go!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:15 pm
Your mystery plant is definitely either a cuke, or squash, LOL! They all look similar at that stage.
Jun. 7, 2010 5:19 pm
I know!!! If it's a squash, I'll love it just the same but the neighbors can eat, I don't really care for them!! I hope it's a cuke!!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:20 pm
I laughed my butt off about your marijuanna comment- I thought you were going to say "pear trees" or something like that. Way to keep us on our toes! I think your garden is terrific. I have a black thumb, but I bought basil and rosemary plants about a month ago at my farmer's market, and they're actually thriving. We won't be in our new house soon enough to have a garden this year, but I'll have plenty of gardening questions coming your way next spring. You seem to have a real knack for growing.
Jun. 7, 2010 5:25 pm
Loved each and every plant! Cute "cow" container for your orange thyme! Do you ever see rabbits (or any 'other' salad-loving wild critters) around? Maybe the scent of your dogs will keep them away. So glad you shared it all with us! The bird house is so cool... I wonder how tall the dill will get...will you have to stake it, so it doesn't bend over? It's like a mini-paradise. Paradise is an earthly word, meaning "a garden" or "a park" [from Greek paradeisos]
Jun. 7, 2010 5:27 pm
Looking great!!!!!!!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:28 pm
LUV the cow milk can planter! That is just awesome! This is so cool WW - hope you will keep the progress updated! My MIL grew every kind of lettuce she could in anything that would hold dirt and water. It was the BEST salad I ever ate!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:31 pm
Citrus Punch, you crack me up, are you serious!! I'm ROF!! Mrs.S...I don't know if I'll have to stake up the dill or not, we bought another pack of 25 stakes, so if I do, I should be good to go on that. I didn't buy tomato cages, we are using the stakes and twine for them. I have a bunch of cages only they are lost somewhere in one of those black holes we like to call storage units! I have 2 and they are 10 x 20 each and stuffed to the ceilings with the stuff out of our old house!! I wouldn't even know A) which one they're in or B) where to start looking!! Yikes! That's what I get for having the guys pack the stuff in there!!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:34 pm
WFDM...I figure if it holds enough dirt, something's gotta be able to grow there, even if just for a while! LOL! I save all of the small containers that I buy the plants in too...that way I have them for next year to start seeds in...I just didn't have any this year because I only had a tomato plant and a few pots of petunias last summer...I was too busy working and didn't have time to care for any thing other than those. Since I'm taking the year off work, I've got lots of time! Neighbor Bob gave me that container and a huge old glass gallon jug, too...I'm just trying to figure out what to stick in that!
Jun. 7, 2010 5:43 pm
btw, your 3-Can Fruit Crisp sounds delish. I love crisps and the ginger sounds different, but good. I put ginger powder in the meatballs, in the AR recipe 'Waikiki Meatballs' [by: CMAYBELL], and they are so good, I make them regularly now (over rice). The only thing I do differently with that recipe is use a scant 1/4 cup white vinegar (and use canned pineapple chunks in their own juice)... Oh yeah, and I bake the meatballs for 30 minutes @350 degrees on a foil-lined pan sprayed with Pam, for easy cleanup. Now I am getting hungry! For Waikiki Meatballs over rice, AND your Fruit Crisp!! lol
Jun. 7, 2010 5:49 pm
Yum...that sounds good and different! I'll check that recipe out, thanks!
Jun. 7, 2010 6:01 pm
About your tomatillos, I grew one last year and it produced alot without having another tomatillo next to it. They didn't get very big but that could have been poor fertilizing on my part, also it grew into a huge monstorous plant that over grew a couple of my pepper plants and a tomato plant!! I also discovered last year that jalapenos and bell pepper plants can cross pollinate. By the end of the season I had some pretty spicy bell peppers!
Jun. 7, 2010 6:05 pm
Aww, you don't know what you're missing, if it's a yellow squash. I slice it with zucchini(sometimes), bread in flour and cornmeal, s&p, and just pan fry it till crispy. Sometimes I saute it. Sometimes it goes in raw chunks like cukes into pasta salad. Yes, peel and all and zucchini too. The AR recipe for the baked zucchini patties would be good with squash too! I've got it in my recipe box'll be popping up on RE soon when that stuff starts coming into season.
Jun. 7, 2010 6:05 pm
Wow, WW, it looks like you have your hands full! Your plants look wonderful and the snapdragons are oh so pretty! Definitely my favorite! I wasn't going to plant flowers this year either, but they're just so pretty so I planted a few dahlias because I love the color. Good luck with everything!
Jun. 7, 2010 6:15 pm
Is the glass jug big enough for a terrarium? How wide is the opening? My sister had one (waaaay long ago LOL) and the little plants were neat inside. Maybe not edible but still cool.
Jun. 7, 2010 6:37 pm
WW - love your blog and your garden. So much fun! I planted my first veggie garden this year and I can hardly wait to get home from work and see how it looks. Lots of fun. You're very resourceful and making the most of your limited space!
Jun. 7, 2010 6:49 pm
No, unfortunately, the opening of the jug isn't big enough for anything like that, I'm thinking that if my avacado pits ever sprout, I'll just grow an avacado tree in water in it or something like that...
Jun. 7, 2010 7:00 pm
Wow, what a show you put on.. great pictures, keep up the good work and here's hoping for some sunshine (which I have quite enough of, thank you)!
Jun. 7, 2010 7:14 pm
wonderful as always! i'm sure all of your plants enjoyed the wonderful sun we had today! and we're even suppose to get some more of it too, i can't wait!
Jun. 7, 2010 7:22 pm
I heard we're supposed to hit 80 on Sunday...definately got to go to storage and get the A/C out!!
Jun. 7, 2010 7:25 pm
Wow! I had no idea your "little" container garden was so huge! You have done a fantastic job
Jun. 7, 2010 7:28 pm
LOLOLOL Are you relying on me being a master gardener or having a misspent youth to answer your question about the tomatillos? LOL. Saw you had some good advice^ aways. I do garden organically but I think I know the answer. Tomato plants can self pollinate but when grown in a greenhouse they need a fan to circulate their pollen. Being outside they should be fine. I'll double check for you, got a friend with a greenhouse who jumpstarts her season for the farmer's market. She had ripe tomatos earlier in the season. Told you about the container envy :)and lettuce.
Jun. 7, 2010 7:30 pm
Thanks, Mike, I didn't know for sure about the tomatillos, just thought I would pass on what I was told...she probably just wanted me to spend the extra! I'm curious if my bells will have a kick to them now...time will tell...and that's pretty cool to know, thanks!
Jun. 7, 2010 7:31 pm
I would have never thought about you having a misspent youth, I thought I had that one in the bag...LMAO! Container envy...LOL again...I'll have to remember that one!! That's great!
Jun. 7, 2010 8:51 pm
Looks great! I have an inground garden, and mine is only just sprouting, so I'm a tad envious - also of all the varieties of things you can grow there. We are very limited here, for various reasons. I have had aphid problems too. Planting marigolds helps with that, as they attract ladybugs, which feed voraciously on aphids. And I loved seeing your heliotrope. I swear I could smell it. It is my all time favorite flowering plant.
Jun. 8, 2010 12:10 am
Seeing how much you love to grow things, and how well you do it, you definitely need to come down here!!! Things grow so fast, it's almost like watching time-lapse photography! careful with the mint plant. It has a tendancy to "creep" and will take over in a hurry. Our back yard is almost totally bricked over (the guy who owned our house before us was in a wheel chair) and almost all of our plants are in macetas (pots) so we figured we were safe with the mint. It managed to sneak it's way into a pot with gardenias in it and choked them out. Boo hiss! Now the mint is in a corner all by it's lonesome! The bagged soil we get here, unlike the stuff you get in the States, is not sterilized. I was wandering around looking at all of Richard's "babies" and found a big green leafy stalk growing out of the middle of a pot with geraniums in it. I was ready to yank it out, thinking it was a weed. Richard stopped me just in time. It was a tomato plant! We hadn't planted any, so the seeds must have been hiding in the soil! Go figure! We had a nice harvest of itty bitty "grape" tomatoes that were fabulous in salads! Gotta tell you...I love the wading pool with the onions! You've given me an idea! We have a fountain in the back yard that doesn't work. Filling it with onions would give it a purpose and look really neat! Thanks for another great blog!!!
Jun. 8, 2010 2:52 am
I wish I had your kind of green thumb! Things look like they are growing well for you!
Jun. 8, 2010 5:46 am
My dear we could compare a couple war stories. We can if you'd like at besides I have a ? about RA for you. Having been tired and irritable last night the memory wasn't working well. Tomatoes are self fertile meaning they have both male and female pollen. I was right about outside wind & insects being enough to pollinate. Now for the tomatillos, they are not self fertile. So you need a male and a female. I'll dig a little deeper for you and see what else I find! :)
Jun. 8, 2010 6:13 am
Hey WW, your garden looks great! I just got done trying to identifying all of the flowers at our house. I so don't know anything about gardens. It's our first house and the the couple who owned it before were avid gardeners! We moved in the house in the fall when everything was dead and now it looks like a jungle! We have a plethera of ground covering Bloody Cranes Bill which is some type of geranium, virginia spiderwort, lilacs,hydrangeas, roses and wysteria which he formed into trees! Everything is purple except his yellow roses!I still have two bushes/plants to identify and am having no luck! It's probably to late in the season to start any veggies here in Pa. but I do have rosemary growing but a unexpected frost killed my basil!!! Can't wait to see your garden produces!!! Peace
Jun. 8, 2010 7:15 am
Hey dragonfly...I just read the back of the packet of seeds, it always gives an approximate time line on how long it takes for the plants to reach maturity. My advice would be to take $5 or $10 and buy some different seeds. Give it a whirl, if they grow for you, that's fantastic but if they don't, you're not really out a big investment...good luck!!
Jun. 8, 2010 8:05 am
Funny WW,cause we just recently planted some lobelias and petunias! r your lobelias doing?? I want to compare it to mine! Amazed at how creative you are..........
Jun. 8, 2010 8:08 am
Your imagination and that trigger finger of yours on the camera are a winning combination. Your wading pool brought memories of my mom planting radishes and spring onions in a kiddie pool that wouldn't hold water from so many leaks. She was the queen of "use it or lose it, make do or do without"! The cinder block as a planter? Genius.
Jun. 8, 2010 8:10 am
Hi WW. Your garden looks great! Thumbs up on the purple bird feeders and red petunias. Purple is my favorite color, and red is my favorite color to wear :)
Jun. 8, 2010 8:11 am
Cozycook...I only planted my lobelia yesterday, so yours is probably way ahead! LOL!
Jun. 8, 2010 9:00 am
Every time I look at your garden I start thinking ahead to how I want to copycat it next year (it's too hot here already to think about starting a garden now). I have my Redneck Topsy Turvy planters that are doing pretty good right now, but I'd love to try some lettuces and different peppers! I'm gonna be on the lookout for buckets on the side of the road, end-of-season sales on kiddie pools, and other random containers so I can be ready when it's planting time next spring. Thanks for the inspiration!!
Jun. 8, 2010 9:04 am
I figure people can laugh if they want, Keri, I'll just laugh away myself every time I can put $2.50 into my savings account by using herbs out of my garden rather than buying them at Safeway, and then having to throw them out because I wasn't able to use them all. I'll laugh to myself every time I go outside and pick a tomato and put that $1.49 into savings and everytime I pull an onion and put at least 99 cents a pound in the bank. I'm laughing myself all the way to the bank!!
Jun. 8, 2010 9:30 am
Loved the pics & the blog. I do container stuff too because of limited space - you certainly have given me some more ideas because I stick to lettuces & herbs. Thanks, WW!
Jun. 8, 2010 10:41 am
That's cool, Maggi! Keep me updated, ok?
Jun. 8, 2010 11:04 am
LOve it my tomatoes and peppers are doing quite well as well as my herbs, they are in a decorative "washtub" on my back patio. I have a fushia plant and hummingbird feeder on metal hooks next to it and not only does it look pretty but I get so see those beautiful little hummingbirds :D and will laugh all the way to the bank next itme I don't have to buy tasteless tomatos for BLT's ;D
Jun. 8, 2010 12:20 pm
Garden looks good. I think your mystery plant is a cucumber. I'm like 99% sure. If you're having pest problems and are gardening organically, try diatomaceous earth. It's the only thing I've found that's worked, for earwigs especially. The insectiside soaps seemed to attact the bugs. And interesting about the tomatillo. I'm only growing one so we'll see if it does anything.
Jun. 8, 2010 5:21 pm
you're an inspiration Witchy...and I love your blue bottle birdhouse.
Jun. 8, 2010 8:08 pm
Holy cow! I think I just turned green with envy looking at all that!! :) We didn't do very much this year here. Since Dad's eyesight has become so awful, it's hard for him to come out to help, so it's just been me gardening, with a >40 hr. work week. A few tomato plants, rosemary, basil, dill, sage, oregano, and some wild strawberries which are taking over a flower bed out front. :) Wish my scanner wasn't on the fritz.. Btw, I totally LOVE the milk jug birdhouse! That's SO awesome!! :) How's Bob? Is Smokey Lonesome settling in ok?
Jun. 9, 2010 6:46 am
Everything looks great! I am especially jealous of your having no luck with mine!
Jun. 9, 2010 7:04 am
I just water the heck out of it and leave it out in the rain and it seems to like it! I've never grown it before...I'm just fuddling through on a lot of these things...the only things I ever grew were tomatoes in a 5 gallon bucket and some lettuce, potatoes and radishes...other than that, this is all new to me!
Jun. 9, 2010 9:39 am
Cream of 7 Herb Soup?? Yes, please! Can't wait for the recipe!
Jun. 9, 2010 12:53 pm
Once again, great pics! I love your garden and I'm super jealous of you cilantro plant! Mine is looking so sad and pathetic right now lol! Great job!
Jun. 9, 2010 4:13 pm
I just planted 4 more pots of flowers that Bob bought for me...a yellow and a white snapdragon, a really beautiful diamthus and a yellow and pink striped petunia! It's coming right along!
Jun. 10, 2010 8:03 am
Wow! You are one energetic woman! I'm envious of that beautiful garden.
Jun. 10, 2010 8:04 am
Actually, you put me to shame. I live on 2.5 acres and haven't had an ounce of energy to do a thing with it. Ahh, maybe a lesson for my kids - go do something with our property; it will count for science!
Jun. 10, 2010 11:17 am
I love your garden and your water gallon bird feeders. Thinking that might be fun to do with my son. Are you getting any birds?
Jun. 10, 2010 7:01 pm
I sure's like a bird expressway in my tree out back...LOL! I have blue birds, green birds, humming birds, yellow birds, red birds, black birds and plain ol' brown birds!!
Jun. 12, 2010 5:37 am
I just love reading your blogs--- I too have a container garden and always receive many helpful hints/tips from your blogs. Keep up the great work!
Jun. 12, 2010 10:22 am
hey ww! v your garden is awesome! i also love reading your blogs and i am very envious. i have been trying to start a garden for ages and you have actually done it, and with great success.
Jun. 12, 2010 10:52 am
Love it! I am especially jealous of your success with cilantro! There you are in Washington with all the rain and here I am in somewhat sunny California (June gloom has set it) and I can't get my cilantro to grow at all! I've tried twice and now I think I'll just buy it at the veggie stand down the road! Good for you - loved the pics-love to you and Bob and all the critters!
Jun. 12, 2010 11:21 am
Hey WW... that "book" we talked about? Yep, that one. I would love to have a signed copy.
Jun. 12, 2010 12:47 pm
I'm in awe and inspired! I love plants and even read a 1000 pg organic gardening book—but despite love, water, and talking too, I can't keep any alive ... I'm going to keep watching so I pick up some tips. :-)
Jun. 12, 2010 2:15 pm
I just wanted to let everyone know that the Nepal blog was posted...feel free to check it out and Bob and I are doing a giveaway prize, so go and read!
Jun. 12, 2010 4:20 pm
love it love it love it. Great pictures and I really enjoy your persistence and ingenuity. You inspired me to plant radishes and basil in two plastic containers. Now I have more basil than I want and am waiting for the radishes to grow more. Don't stop writing!
Jun. 12, 2010 9:56 pm
Looking very good!!!
Jun. 12, 2010 10:31 pm
Check out the Bayou Gardener: This is a fun site too.
Jun. 13, 2010 4:52 am
Well I have the urge to go make myself a garden. :) This is a fun blog. Have you taken your milk jugs or other bottles similiar and made them into on of those "topsy turvy?" I saw a post about it elsewhere and that is what I was thinking of doing for tomatoes. Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed looking at your pictures.
Jun. 13, 2010 5:41 am
Wow! You really have quite a garden! Happy gardening!
Jun. 13, 2010 5:56 am
You did all that from seed? Gosh! I do most of my gardening in containers lately because of a bad back, but it has other benefits (such as weed control); it's a great solution for all of you who now find gardening in plots in the ground too overwhelming. When inspecting my roses, I just crush the aphids (at their green clingy stage) with my fingers. I hope my confessing this on a cooking site doesn't gross all of you out too much. I think you might enjoy California poppies, if you haven't already tried them; very easy to grow from seed. The original orange is my favorite. When the foliage starts to come up, you'll notice its fern-like texture and beautiful blue-green. Happy gardening!
Jun. 13, 2010 6:36 am
Norma...some of that was from seed, but some was from starter plants...I'm not THAT good! lol!!
Jun. 13, 2010 7:55 am
You are very resourceful, I hope that your garden provides you with an abundance to harvest. I am sure that it very satisfying to only have to step outside and grab your items to make a salad; more of us should be trying to grow gardens, or planter gardens if space is limited. I planted tomatoes, peppers, dill, chives for me and sunflowers for the birds to eventually enjoy in the fall.
Jun. 13, 2010 7:57 am
You are very resourceful, I hope that your garden provides you with an abundance to harvest. I am sure that it very satisfying to only have to step outside and grab your items to make a salad; more of us should be trying to grow gardens, or planter gardens if space is limited. I planted tomatoes, peppers, dill, chives for me and sunflowers for the birds to eventually enjoy in the fall.
Jun. 13, 2010 9:01 am
Your gardening looks great. So happy you're branching out and adding flowers. Gotta have flowers. Please tell us what variety is in the lettuce packet, I can't quite make it out in the photo.
Jun. 13, 2010 9:04 am
P.S. Peggy Mitchell you never should have fessed up and said you were a certified Nursery Professional, now we're all going to bug you to death with our questions...well me anyway.
Jun. 13, 2010 10:24 am
today was the first time i read this blog and was so enthralled with it i read every post. lol ww u are for sure a genius . people are amazed at some of the things i do but u have me beat by a milke . lots of good eating ur going to have . thanks kattie
Jun. 13, 2010 10:56 am
hey there, you with the cilantro in hand, loved your garden pics, specially lavender, my utmost favorite for gifts of simple caring and sharing. I have a couple of the same containers as you, and I see we share the same knack for using milk bottles creatively, I dare say that's not all we share in those areas. I've been busy with Dan's health,and unable to blog but once or twice, and I took this time to catch up (not KKKKk)to you, I hope things are well, sounds like they are. My stuff is on our veranda we have had unusually cool rain & teps for NoCa area, but our veranda faces SoWest dead on and I hope I don't lose everything, we are not alowed to put up a whatchcallit, my dog has to go out, my brain is tired, can you guess what I can't put up? LOL
Jun. 13, 2010 11:09 am
I really enjoyed looking at your garden. I have a few tomato,pepper and lettuce plants on my sun porch. Am eating from the lettuce,waiting for tomatoes and peppers. It also seems like we share the idea that gardening need not be expensive,I recycle and reuse everything! My interest in gardening accelerated after my cancer diagnosis. I'm so delighted that I could actually grow something and eat it! Next year a garden in the yard!
Jun. 13, 2010 1:34 pm
Awesome and highly creative container garden! I have to admit that mine is much more traditional. And if that's true about the tomatillos, I'm in trouble, 'cuz I only have one! I'll have to pick up another, I suppose, if it is. Oh well...I have an extra container! One quick comment on the fertilizer comment from Peggy...I HIGHLY recommend Miracle Gro! I've used it for many, many years, and my tomatoes, especially, always do very well. I just gave them another "meal" today, and even here in Wisconsin, they are about 3 feet tall now and all have blooms and many already have fruits on them. It works great! And one last comment to my rambling...I said the same thing about flowers this year, but I ended up buying all sorts of stuff that attracts butterflies and hummingbirds! It's a sickness.... : )
Jun. 13, 2010 2:31 pm
I love seeing your garden in front of your RV, just shows you what people can do when they want to. I have tomatoes with yellow leaves so thought they might need fertilizer. Some of them have little tomatoes on them. I have 2 peppers and several herbs. My problem with the cilantro is it grows so tall and wants to flower. so i keep pinching the top off hoping it will grow new leaves.
Jun. 13, 2010 2:44 pm
We went to the farmer's arket yesterday, and I have to STOP!! Well, I might get a few more flowers...but there are a couple who run a stall called West of Eden Gardens and they have so many varieties of heirloom tomatoes. Yesterday they had a sign up that it was their last day there...I asked why and she told me they were sold out, the stock they had left was there at the market. She was selling all varieties of heirlooms for $2 a pot and they were already blooming and a few had green tomatoes on them. We bought 2 more plants: a Green Zebra and a Black Seaman variety and I bought a purple cherokee pepper plant for $1. I got more thyme, sage, heliotrope and a really pretty double petunia. Each of these plants was less than $2...but I have 7 different tomato plants now and if they all produce, this we'll have tomatoes coming out our ears...I plan on canning pasta sauce, salsa, green tomato relish and whatever else I can think of...maybe I'll try coming up with a good BBQ sauce to can. I gave away a bunch of baby tomatillo plants because there's no way I can possibly plant THAT many...LOL! I thought the rain had killed them off, but up they came! I must be doing something right, I 'spose!!
Jun. 13, 2010 5:31 pm
Laurrie, those cinder blocks and that kiddie pool is a hoot (and genuis). I really like what you've done, the garden looks cool. I love heliotrope, planted it everywhere, the foliage is as pretty as the flowers. (I'm a foliage guy)
Jun. 13, 2010 5:32 pm
witchy, I'm like you although I don't have a farmer's market. There is a Lowes on the way home and I stop at that d@mn place eveytime I pass by, it just beckons........
Jun. 13, 2010 5:47 pm
All I can say is...You are AMAZING!
Amy C 
Jun. 13, 2010 6:57 pm
Love your blog! I have a recipe for canning kosher dill pickles that doesn't require the "hot bath" if you are interested. I am now considering growing something in a container.. Thanks..
Jun. 13, 2010 7:10 pm
I love your ornamental plant choices. I like to see the humbugs (hummingbirds) & butterflies on the flowers. Doesn't it just make your heart happy? :o)
Jun. 13, 2010 7:35 pm
WW...I am so jealous of you! I just killed a topsy turvy tomato plant while my neighbors plants are growing like crazy. Do you have lots of experience in gardening?? (p.s. - love your blogs)
Jun. 13, 2010 11:52 pm
wow,it all looks great,you r an inspiration,and it sure is evident that you enjoy your garden thoroughly.thanks for an awesome picture tour. I just thought that if you remove O from WOW,it becomes WW.
Jun. 14, 2010 5:36 am
What a delightful display! Thanks so much for the tour- the pictures surely do let your happiness and love of plants come through-all the way to us here in NJ, twelve miles west of New York City! I personally adore reading about life in the RV. Best of luck with your harvest and keep posting-lots of fans out here truly do appreciate it. Keep us up-to-date on the mystery plant's progress so the rest of us novices can see when we would recognize what it is! PS. You are SO "doing something right!" Thanks again.
Jun. 14, 2010 8:17 am
Hello WW! Love your container garden! Thanks for inspiration! At our home in Tulsa our yard is small and the area I want to garden in is so small, and faces east! I get a good partial sun for that side. Only my front yard has full sun. I have started container gardening by buying plastic pots at the Dollar store. I appreciate all the containers you re purpose! You live in the state I plan to relocate to. I actually visited Forks on the way to La Push. Port Angeles is my dream spot. Keep us posted!
Jun. 14, 2010 10:09 am
Great pics and great blog as always. I went out this morning and something had feasted on my pepper plants so now they have been soaped! Thank you. I didn't want to spray insecticide. I put cowhorn, ancho and bell peppers in a container so I guess we'll have hot bell peppers! I have coriander that is growing great but the cilantro is puny and I don't know why.
Jun. 14, 2010 11:18 am
Hey guys...if you don't want to buy the insecticidal soap, you can mix a little Dawn dish soap (like 5 or 6 drops) in a spray bottle with water and that gets rid of aphids, too...mine were just too far gone to use the Dawn but the insecticidal soap I got is organic, too. rogandjul's....PA is a great best friend from childhood owns a beauty salon there...let me know when you get there and I'll tell you which one it is! K.Jones: I don't have a ton of experience gardening, I'm trying tons of new plants this year and some are doing fantastic and some are struggling, like my sage, rosemary and peppers. I am not really sure why the tomatoes this year are going so slow either, the only thing I can think of is that we have 45 days of straight rain...that and the bugs...but I bought 2 more heirlooms at the farmer's market Saturday and they are blooming already, so they should be good to go. Plants like schedules! If it's sunny out, I water every night and I water enough that it flows out through the drainage holes at the bottom. Every Monday, the tomatoes, peppers, Ms. Raspberry and the tomatillos get sprayed with insecticidal soap and every Wednesday everyone gets a drink of Miracle Gro...if it's cloudy, everyone gets watered every other day, if we have a heat wave, they get watered morning and evening. I'm pretty sure the reason they are all thriving is that they are on the concrete which soaks up heat from the sun and the roots stay warm...plants like that and it makes them thrive! I just make sure that they are all sun lovers! Fuschias are shade lovers and it's way too hot out here for them. I usually buy fuschia starts and make my own hanging baskets...I usually have 5 or 6 a year, except the last 2 years...I get too much sun! suzanne: I just got a purple Cherokee pepper plant Saturday for $1 and it's pretty big, so I can't wait to see what it will produce!! crack me up!!!
Jun. 14, 2010 11:42 am
Ok, everyone....I have set an email account if you guys want to contact me, ask me questions or enter this contest: If you want to enter the contest, send me an email and just say contest!
Jun. 14, 2010 2:16 pm
I just enjoyed the heck out of that! Thanks for sharing!
Jun. 14, 2010 4:52 pm
Thanks for reading, tracy!
Jun. 14, 2010 6:27 pm
Awesome! I'm doing container gardening this year, too. I grew and lost a whole crop of spinach and parsley to aphids last month, but everything else seems to be pretty peachy - we have rosemary, green beans, onions, corn, blackberries, poblanos, jalapenos, and habaneros. I'm thinking about starting some garlic before it's too late, as well! Great pictures, it makes me want to take and share some of my own! :)
Jun. 14, 2010 8:47 pm
Great blog and great garden! I have some of my garden in containers - mostly herbs. Strangely, many of the herbs I planted in my veggie garden have suffered from the amount of rain we've had. I have NO luck starting herbs from seeds (don't know why I try, since I end up going out to buy the plants anyway...) Your mystery plant looks more like a cuke or a zuke than a pumpkin. I have all three and my pumpkins look way different from that little guy. Of course, one year I had pumpkin plants crossbreed with zucchini. We ended up with HUGE zucchini that turned orange and weighted over 8 lbs! You never know what you're gonna get, eh? Keep blogging, WW!
Jun. 14, 2010 9:02 pm
Some old guy who moved in a couple of spots down thinks that mystery plant is a cantaloupe or watermelon...could that be a possibility?
Jun. 14, 2010 9:36 pm
Great garden Witchy!! I was going to say mystery plants looks a little like the cantaloupe I planted one year, but it was so many years I can't remember exactly how it looked.. Keep up the great work! Can't wait for another progress report!
Jun. 15, 2010 7:01 am
I'm crossing my fingers that the wait & see plant is a cantaloupe! Dare to dream!! I don't know how well it will grow here, though...I think they need tons of sun and not so much rain....I'll just keep watching it grow! Thanks, MsVal
Jun. 16, 2010 6:37 am
OMG! The culprits were green horned caterpillars. Those guys chomped away. I've been chopping them off and chopping them up! Taking out my frustrations on these yucky worms.I read to plant marigolds. I really don't like them but I'm buying some today.
Jun. 20, 2010 4:32 pm
WW love your blogs and your garden is so creative and looks great! I think your mystery plant is a zuchini......Also wanted to mention the experience I had with tomatillas. I usually do a Cinco de Mayo dinner each year, one year I had a couple extra tomatillos that ended up in my compost due to the refrigerator gnomes hiding them from me until hmm... maybe late June. My husband diligently spread some of the compost on my garden the next year and what I though was an explosion of potato plants turned out to be at least 2 dozen tomatillo plants overtaking my 6 or so potato plants. In the end I had so many tomatillos I could have supplied the local Mexican restaurant, (they were even growing in the compost bin)and infact I did end up giving away 10 1bs or so to my Mexican neighbors! Moral of this story is I never put tomatillos in the compost anymore. Good luck with yours and I would guess 2-3 plants would be plenty!
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About Me
I've been married to my husband for over 8 years. My husband is a cancer survivor. We live in SW Washington state by Mt. St. Helens, but I'm originally from Forks, the little town made famous by the Twilight movies. My blog is called Baked Lava and I'm currently cooking my way around the world. I write a monthly column for our local newspaper called Life in an RV and that site is I've had my blog featured in Trailblazer Magazine. I love my recycled container garden and I love to create new recipes. I rarely follow a recipe to the letter, unless it involves baking. My husband & I don't have children unless you count the 4-legged variety...we have 4 of those: Puppa, Sasha, KiKi & Super Dave the Girl Cat. I am a prize-winning nature photographer.
My favorite things to cook
I don't have really a favorite thing to cook, per say...I'm not afraid to cook anything. I've recently taught myself how to can and make bread. I still have no great love of making cookies. I'm getting very well-versed in worldwide cuisine, as I'm cooking my way around the world. I love to create new recipes and rarely, anymore, do I have one that flops, but it does and will happen...the road to hell was paved with good intentions, or so they say. My favorite cuisine in this worldwide culinary adventure has been, so far, Belgium...fantastic food! I also am partial to Vietnamese, Korean, Azerbaijani and Hungarian cuisine...and Middle Eastern food kicks @ss!
My favorite family cooking traditions
My favorite family cooking tradition is the weekly international meals that I prepare. The tradition is that my blog readers choose what country they would like to see from week to week and I cook an entire meal for 4 people with a budget of $20. Right now I am in the middle of my "Austerity" project where we are solely eating from the freezers and really have to creative to do this and I am making up recipes as I go...I have used a few AR recipes and credit back to them, though.
My cooking triumphs
I've had several of my original recipes published, I've had my blog featured in a magazine, I now write a monthly food column based on my blog for our local newspaper and I'm already one year into my cooking venture of Around the World in an RV. I am a Food Buzz featured publisher, I'm on PetitChef, RecipesUS and Foodista among many, many other cooking websites. I guess it's safe to say that due to my cooking, I have now ventured into the world of food blogging and into a smaller group of us fellow global food bloggers and I've made some amazing friends.
My cooking tragedies
There have been several and there aren't enough characters in the 1000 allotted to list them all down!
Argentina  |  Australia & New Zealand  |  Brazil  |  Canada  |  China  |  France  |  Germany  |  India  |  Italy  |  Japan  |  Korea  |  Mexico

Netherlands  |  Poland  |  Quebec  |  Russia  |  SE Asia  |  United Kingdom & Ireland  |  United States