Tag Archives: healthy eating

Good/Bad News in the Garden

The grocery store was selling lettuce plants yesterday! I bought two, having little hope that they would do anything this time of year, since they are a cool-weather plant. One of them has already croaked :0( – but this one is still alive as of this minute. I’ll probably have to go ahead and clear out the garden for the season, since my yellow crookneck squash plants are producing lots of huge leaves by very little else. I’ll go ahead and pull everything out, unless this sweet plant is still alive. I’ll pull the onions and start drying them out. We have possibly severe storms coming in this evening-into-tomorrow, so this will wait until next week. It was a fun thing to try, though.

Meanwhile, though my tomato plants don’t look pretty, they are producing. This is what I brought in this morning. There are more to come tomorrow. This is the time of year we feel super rich. We have lots of ripe tomatoes to each for both lunch and dinner. :0)

I’ll take pics of the onions when I get them onto the trailer screen to start drying.

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Friday’s Harvest

We had a good harvest yesterday. My spinach output is dwindling with the warmer weather and soon will be finished, so I’m getting as much as I can and freezing it so none will be wasted.

I’ve never actually done much with yellow crookneck squash before, so this is a lot of fun. I have a lot of little bitty squashes coming on. I decided that the ones above were large enough to harvest. I have a spiralizer tool that will make them nice for sauteing this evening to serve with some pork chops. :0)

It looks like I might have a good sweet onion crop this year. I won’t actually know until much later, but things look good right now. I also have some celery that I grew from cutting off the bottoms of celery I bought at the store. The stalks are ‘spread out’ rather than like the ones you see at the store in the tight groups, but they taste fine, so I’ll take them.

We have small green tomatoes and lots of blossoms on our tomato plants. We have two brick planters that we converted to square foot garden planters. I’m hopeful we’ll have lots of ripe tomatoes to slice and enjoy soon.

I need to do some weeding, but it’s getting dark outside, looking like it’s going to storm. Maybe I can get something done between raindrops…

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Thing Two

I may have mentioned (griped) that, starting about 6pm this evening, we’re supposed to get rain every day through the 27th! So Thing Two on my list today was to harvest some of our veggies from the garden.

The garden has gone nuts. I filled my basket with spinach, then went back and harvested lettuce. By the time I got everything washed and stored, I was too tired to go back and harvest more.

The thing I’m MOST pleased with is that I grew an actual head of lettuce. Just like one you can buy in the grocery store.

Today’s lettuce harvest
Today’s Spinach Harvest

It’s about 4pm here now. I’m going to get a cup of coffee and enjoy my book for awhile, now that I have finsiehd Thing One and Thing Two. :0) I hope your Sunday has been a good one.

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Garden Veggies


I lucked out and the storm last night did not clobber my veggies.

Nook Tomatoes

2nd tomato planter

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2nd Harvest

Simply Pallets-Etsy.com

Today’s spinach harvest is the best I have ever had. I am really amazed hat how large and healthy the leaves are! Some of the leaves are 8 inches long!

This is a small head of lettuce.
frilly lettuce
Butter Crunch Lettuce

I could have harvested a lot more today. I’m HOPING that the storm tonight doesn’t batter my sweet plants. I have a gallon bag of spinach and a gallon bag of lettuce that we’ll give to our hairdresser when my husband gets a haircut tomorrow. Meanwhile, we will have a huge chef salad for dinner tonight. :0)

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Garden Progress

Butter Crunch Lettuce

I’ve been covering my veggie plants and tomato planters with sheets for 4 nights now, and so far, things seem to have come through the freezes all right. The Zucchini has had the most reaction. I’ve had to cut off several leaves from the plants. They blackened with the frosts and freezes. There is enough left of the plants that still looks good I think they will make it.

According to the weather website we are now past the freezes. This is really unusual here. Usually, our last frosts are April 5th, and that is even pretty late since I have been trying to grow things. We are supposed to get rain tonight and all day tomorrow.

I have the sheets spread out on the fencing around the garden, trying to dry it out during the day today so I can bag them up and put them away.

I HOPING that things will get back to normal for gardening soon.

Although the veggies seem to be doing all right, my elephant ear bulbs did not make it over wintered in the garage. I have finally given up on them and ordered more bulbs. I am hoping those will arrive soon so that I can get them into the ground.

I gathered my first harvest of the year recently, and we enjoyed a main meal salad last night, featuring our own spinach and lettuce! It’s been quite awhile since we were able to do that. I loved it!

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1st Harvest of 2021

As you can see, the plants in my veggie garden are happy at the moment!

I celebrated our first harvest of 2021 this afternoon.

I am about to go cover up the veggie planters because the weather people are forecasting a possible frost tonight! I find it hard to believe, but I’ll sure take the time to go cover things up.

I will get out tomorrow and do some weeding – particularly in one of the tomato planters, plus do some fertilizing. I will also mix and spray more weed killer, starting under the planters in the garden.

Here is today’s harvest of leaf lettuce. I actually have three kinds this year – head lettuce, a kind of frilly leaf lettuce I haven’t harvested yet, and Butter Crunch lettuce. I had enough to fill 3 one-gallon storage bags.

Here is the harvest of spinach today. Again, I had enough to fill 3 one-gallon storage bags. This is the best lucky I’ve had with spinach ever.

We will have a nice, fresh salad tonight to go with our leftover hamburger patties and macaroni and cheese.

I’m smiling on my way back out to the garden. :0)

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Sound Cloud

We had quite a storm last night – heavy rain, gusty winds, hail, flying hairballs…. I went out this morning to see what havoc had occurred.

Two of my three new azaleas were pretty battered, but I’m hoping they will perk up once they get a chance to catch their collective breaths.

My garden plants seem to have come through fine. As you can see, one of the next jobs will be to spray weed killer under the planters.
As you can see, I need to pull off yellow leaves and weed this tomato planter.
The ‘nook’ tomato planter is looking pretty good..

I’m feeling very lucky that the hail storm didn’t decimate my garden, as they did one year in the recent past. I’m trying to ‘hold my mouth right’ so the good luck continues. :0)

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Garden Progress 4-7-2021

leaf lettuce

Yellow Crookneck Squash

Things are looking very happy right now. We are under a possibly severe storms warning most of the day, so I’m HOPING that the storms are just rain and wind, rather than hail.


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Charles Schultz – Peanuts – http://www.snoopy.com

Spring officially starts tomorrow. I’m hoping to be able to get some veggie plants for my garden today, kicking off my season of being outside every possible day, kicking up my activity level, cutting DOWN on my comfort eating!

I will also look forward to eating fresh stuff from my garden. I always try to grow lots of spinach and lettuce, radishes, onions, and broccoli, and then whatever else looks interesting. In two other planters, I plant tomatoes. Availability varies, but I LOVE watching things grow, taking care of my plants, and then harvesting the results.

Some years I’m really successful and I can take fresh food to my friends. That is the BEST. :0)

Each year I feel renewed hope for the growing season – a new lease on life.

It’s especially welcome this year, and I look forward to sharing my efforts with you.

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This Would Be Nice…


Since we’re having a cold, rainy day, I’m having to acknowledge another of my eating triggers. I want lots of comfort food, since I can’t have spring yet. You don’t think I’m spoiled, do you?

What we will ACTUALLY have is tuna fish salad for lunch and one of our delicious, healthy individual portion frozen dinners we get from the two ‘new’ places in town, REAL FOOD and STU’S CLEAN COOKIN’. These additions to our town have been wonderful for us. They pride themselves on no preservatives, no additives, no unpronounceable ingredients – just good, healthy food in reasonable portions. Wonderful food. Wonderful timing. Lucky US!

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Dolly Parton – MyWeightLossDream.co.uk – QuotesGram

Nutrisystem, South Beach, BistroMD – all helped, but we stopped, feeling the same as this wonderful quote by Dolly Parton above.

Now we are lucky because two new companies started businesses here in Greenwood – REAL FOOD and STU’S CLEAN COOKIN’, both offering healthy frozen individual portion meals at reasonable prices.

We plan around eating their meals 5 days a week. I then fix a keto-friendly meal that has enough for the weekend, and maybe even a lunch the following week. We eat a frozen meal at night, usually tuna fish salad for lunch, and as few careful snacks as possible the remainder of the day. It’s working for us, albeit slowly.

My husband is basically at his goal weight now. We are trying to be very careful of his sugar, since he is Type II diabetic. I still have about 30 lbs to lose to get to my goal weight. I’m losing more slowly, am the one who is actually exercising, and does all the orchestration of our eating. I would bite my husband in the leg, but basically like him too much to do that just because he seems to lose weight effortlessly. (If he gives me another reason, all bets are off.) :0)

I really like not having to figure out what to cook every day. I also like the fact that we are eating good, healthy food with portion control that actually TASTES GOOD. We can still go to Lunch Bunch to meet our friends each Friday without losing the ground we’ve gained during the week.

I am hopeful that if we ‘keep on keepin’ on,’ (‘holding our mouths right’ as we say in Oklahoma and Arkansas) maybe I will eventually meet MY lard-loss goal, too.

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Diet Day 1:

My husband is basically at his goal weight now. He is very happy about that, and is determined to keep the weight off. We have been really trying to avoid sugar, and his blood sugar numbers are stellar.  :0)  He really likes the Real Food frozen dinners we have been getting. (We pick up our newest order this afternoon.) He has not been throwing much extra bad stuff into our grocery cart, and is encouraging about MY efforts to lose the lard. He told me this morning he was very happy with our eating plan. :0)  Our main source for food is Real Food in Greenwood. We did get some food from Stu’s Clean Cookin’ this past week and put it in the freezer. Since the weather is cooling off, we try to stock up. Living on the top of a ridge line has taught us that having extra supplies in the winter is a very good thing… We will try some of the newest offerings soon.

I have to admit that I’m a bit teed off that my husband has a so much easier time losing weight than I do. He comes in and nukes our dinner, but I’m the one who keeps up with all of the details, makes lunches and snacks, figures out and cooks a keto meal when indicated, cleans up, etc. He does not exercise and has no inclination to. He eats things he shouldn’t, and yet – he has met his goal!

“I” am eating right and exercising (in one form or another) on a daily basis and still have about 30 pounds of lard to lose. I am drinking so much water my eyeballs float. I am making progress, but V E R R R Y slowly.  Since I am definitely not getting any taller, I will just have to continue my efforts and celebrate each pound that finally leaves.

I feel very lucky that we FINALLY found food that tastes good and have figured out a way to plan our eating for the day around the frozen meal we get from the newest good places in Greenwood.

One of these days I’ll be able to tell you I have finally met my goal!





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Weight Loss Tip 2

Born to Workout

I am feeling more in control of what my husband and I are eating now. We are both happy with the food we are getting from REAL FOOD in Greenwood. It’s delicious. We are basing our eating for the day around the meal we eat from there, having a really light lunch and very careful snacks, if any.

We are lucky to have ANOTHER good frozen food place that just opened recently in Greenwood.  It’s called, STU’S CLEAN COOKIN’.  We looked at their menu online yesterday morning, ordered, and were able to pick up our order after 10:00 a.m. yesterday morning! We had paid online and they had our order ready for us. You can’t ask for faster service than that!  We put that in the freezer to stock up. I like the fact that they list the nutrition of each meal on their website. I look forward to seeing if we like their “cookin.”

We get enough to eat 5 dinners per week and then I cook on the weekend, making one of the keto recipes we like. So far, we are losing weight and really enjoying LIKING our food!

My husband is only a couple of pounds away from his goal weight, but he likes the food so much, he is being VERY cooperative about doing this for the foreseeable future while I continue my efforts to get the lard off. (I have around 30 lbs to my goal, I think.)

With good food for the big meal of the day SO easy, I can concentrate on doing the other things I would like to do, rather than being tempted to feed my face in the kitchen.

Right now, the big project is trying to get my onions harvested without being stung/bitten by more fire ants who have taken up residence in my raised bed, square foot planters, and getting the planters cleaned out, things repaired, the boxes filled with Mel’s Mix, and then covered with tarps for the winter.

Have a wonderful Sunday!

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More Rain!

Stephanie Stamm

It’s quite dark outside right now. Our rain is supposed to finish sometime this afternoon. All our growing things have really gotten good, thorough drinks the past few days.

Since it’s not a good day to continue work in the garden, I’m switching to INSIDE things. Since I’m such a lousy housekeeper, there is a plethora of things from which to choose on things needing to be cleaned. :0/

I am planning to try to get up to my art room today to try to finish the bookmarks I started recently. I have more ideas rattling around in my head that I would like to start when I finish the current project and get things cleared off.

source unknown

I am happy to report that I lost another couple of pounds this morning!  That gets me back to my 40 pounds off from my lardiest!

These sweet bears are from when I lost weight several years ago with Nutrisystem. As with the gold stars I put on my desk calendar for exercise, these were motivating. We stopped this program because they discontinued most of the food my husband liked.  I’m happy to have re-earned the green bear…

So far I am very happy with our new eating regimen of having our main meal of the day a frozen entrée from REAL FOOD in Greenwood. Their food is delicious, and the portion is controlled. We are skipping breakfast and eating something light, such as tuna fish salad, for lunch and then MAYBE a careful snack mid to late afternoon, if we are hungry. The careful eating plus exercise (elliptical trainer and yoga stretches) seem to have me on track again, and for that I’m truly grateful.  (We will pre-order for next week when they list the choices this afternoon. )

I hope that you are having a good day, full of love and free from stress.

Stay safe and well.

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Today’s Harvest 9-21-2020


“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” ~ George Eliot

On this, the first day of Autumn, I was able to harvest small little bitty tomatoes!


I don’t know if this is the last of them. There are some green tomatoes on the vines, but we’ve had that before and they never ripened. I keep threatening to remove the plants, but I just can’t when there is the possibility of more tomatoes!

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A Reason to Love Mondays

“Caught Red-Pawed” – Audrius P. – Bored Panda


Real Food Co.


Last week we had a glorious week of EATING. We discovered REAL FOOD in Greenwood and pre-ordered things for the week. We enjoyed ALL of it, AND both of us managed to lose a bit over a pound!

They post choices for the coming week on Wednesday afternoons. You can pre-order from the website, as we do, or you can simply go into the store and choose from all the goodies in the freezer.  If you pre-order, you can pick up your food the following Monday.

They are open Monday through Thursday, 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.  479-414-6337.  964 East Center Street, Greenwood, AR 72936.

Now you see the reason that Monday has become a happy day for us. It’s pick up day for the Lewises!  (We also hope to get a loaf of bread…)


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“Caught Red-Pawed” – Audrius P. – Bored Panda


Our last BistroMD meal last night was Salmon. It was mostly edible, but my husband and I both used lots of tartar sauce. (Usually I don’t use anything except maybe a squeeze of lemon on salmon, so I was really disappointed). Neither of us could identify the side veggie, but we each took one bite and that was it. I just looked it up online and it was eggplant with 5 spices. (Maybe it would have been better if they had used 6.) We are in celebratory mode now because we are moving on. (We still have some snacks from both South Beach and BistroMD, but time will tell if we are hungry enough to eat them.)

Today I will cook some pork chops. We will have a side salad and a celebration of small portions of black eyed peas with onion.  We will eat half of this tonight and the other half tomorrow. Monday we pick up our order from Real Food. I’m eager to try that.

As with so many things, their competitor has already sprung up in Greenwood. It’s called, Stu’s Clean Cookin’. I was impressed with the ad in the paper. They list calories, fat, carbs, and protein for each meal listed. They identified some as “low carb,” “contains dairy,” and “contains gluten.” I like that.

So – just as we needed them, we have TWO nice companies preparing frozen meals we can try! I will be doing a lot of label reading. I plan to at least have several meal options available in the freezer while trying to get back into the swing of meal planning for keto eating.

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“Caught Red-Pawed” – Audrius P. – Bored Panda


Tonight we eat the last meal from BistroMD. This program was not a good match for us, and we are happy to be able to move on. Sad to say, I didn’t lose any weight over the past week – just held my own. (I didn’t get any taller, either.

If I grew about 5 inches, I would be in MUCH better shape. I have a massage next week and will encourage my wonderful therapist to redouble her efforts to pull on my head, legs, and arms enough that my problem might eventually go away. :0)  (One can dream….)

We are looking forward to a week off. We have ordered some hand-prepared frozen meals from Real Food in Greenwood. We will pick up our order Monday. Some of our Lunch Bunch friends say their food is delicious!   In the future, we will do a combination of keto meals and meals from Real Food – if we like it – concentrating on portion control, good choices, and exercise. Fingers crossed.



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Today’s Harvest

Since Tropical Storm Laura may be the last of our tomato vines, I harvested what was there a few minutes ago.


The larger tomatoes are no longer ‘pretty,’ but they taste really good. The cherry-tomato-sized ones taste good, too, though my husband turns up his nose at them and won’t eat them. That’s okay with ME. More for ME!  :0)

We have had a really nice crop this year despite our weird weather. I am trying to be okay if Laura tears up what remains of the plants. One cannot be TOO greedy…


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This poofy lady has lost pound # 8 via South Beach – (37 pounds via various methods since my heaviest). I still have more to lose before I hit ‘new territory’ on my weight loss efforts, but I feel that I am on a roll now. I don’t care how long it takes for me to lose it. I feel good that my scale numbers are going in the right direction now.

My measuring tape is showing positive signs, too, as there is less of me now – 40 inches less – than when I was at my lardiest.






I am going for gold stars # 13 and 14 today for the week – for my elliptical exercising and my yoga practice. I am feeling less like a fool that I ‘exercise for stars’ as if I were a little kid. There are lots of ways I haven’t really grown up, and if this works – RUN IT! :0)


We are on Month #2 of South Beach. I will figure out on which days I will fix DIY dinners, lunches, breakfasts, and snacks (morning and afternoon) – 2 of each during the week.

Fingers crossed the progress continues.


















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Today’s Tomatoes

We had a nice bunch of tomatoes ripe today. I now have a bowl of them, plus a container of much smaller, cherry type tomatoes that I will eat with other raw veggies as snacks. This is one of our favorite times of the year. We are rich in tomatoes!!!!


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I told you yesterday that I felt dumb because I finally noticed – after 2-1/2 days – that “Phase 2 and enjoy with Phase 3” was printed on my husband’s package of pancakes.  Intelligent woman that I am, I thought, “Maybe we’re screwing up.” I spent a half hour or so finding some information on the South Beach website and printing it. I spent another hour or so reading the information, discovering that

  • Amazingly, we are in Phase 1
  • We are only supposed to be eating/drinking Phase 1 stuff until the end of next week
  • We are right that the DIY part (2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, two dinners, and two days of snacks each week) started at the beginning of the program

I separated the aqua-striped packages (Phase 1) from the purple-striped stuff (Phase 2) in my husband’s box, and then did the same in mine. I did the same with our frozen foods. There is a bit of confusion, as the soups don’t say what they are, and it is unclear about the prepared snacks, but I will see if I can reach someone to talk to on the website today.

I told him we are only eating and drinking BLUE stuff – except for DIY meals and snacks – until the end of next week. (Actually, we’ll continue until all the BLUE stuff has been consumed -whenever that is – before going on with Phase 2.

My husband is still upset that so much chocolate stuff was included in his box, when he carefully ordered what he wanted. He really doesn’t like chocolate, and has no patience with the coronavirus causing supply chain problems.  I have given him the vanilla stuff they put in mine – also not ordered. He will have to make do with some of the chocolate stuff if our supplies don’t last until the end of the month.

I have gone onto HIS account page and MY account page, making sure that he has no chocolate ordered and I have no vanilla – with high hopes.

My husband only has about 10 or 15 pounds to lose to get to his goal, so he is much more cavalier about the diet than I am. He wants to cancel after the next month’s order is confirmed as shipped.

I have more to lose than that, but I’m hoping that this two-month ‘pay attention’ time will remind us of things like eating something sensible every few hours to avoid hunger, to eat reasonable portions when we do eat, and to avoid things we know we shouldn’t be eating.  I will continue to use the carb tracking they provide, whether we are eating the prepared foods or not, as I am more likely to keep with the program doing that.

I am trying to walk for 10 minutes 3 times a day, as they suggest. I’m also doing a half hour of “Gentle Yoga” stretches daily. (I think that the 70+ times I have to get up and go to the bathroom each day, due to all the water I’m drinking, should also count as exercise. :0) )

Fingers crossed.

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Today’s Tomatoes

Our weather has been so weird this year that I don’t know what to expect on our ‘crops.’ Today’s tomatoes look as if I planted cherry tomato plants. I planted the normal tomato brands and types that are supposed to be happy with the climate of Arkansas (read HOT and sporadic water). We try to even this out with our irrigation system, but it gets to the point that the plants simply boil away when it gets to be too much.

We have lots of green tomatoes coming, though, so I’m hopeful we will get several more regular-sized tomatoes to enjoy this season.

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Keto Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Bowls

I have just finished cooking this for tonight’s dinner (and tomorrow’s, with the leftovers). This is the second time I’ve cooked it, and my husband raved, even though he is not a huge fan of broccoli. Chicken Alfredo has always been a favorite of mine, crossed off my list when I started Keto because of the pasta. This recipe has no pasta and I don’t miss it!

When I told my husband earlier that I was going to fix it for tonight, his one word answer was “YUM!”

Net carbs are 7 grams per serving. This recipe is 4 servings.

I have truly never found a recipe book where we really like most of the recipes until this one. She uses down to earth ingredients so you are not having to hunt all over town or order a bunch of stuff online. They are also not labor-intensive recipes, a big plus in my book, since nowadays we are working outside a lot and I don’t want to go to a lot of trouble for something to eat.

This recipe is now one of our staples.

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Progress in the Garden 5-9-2020

I spent most of the day in my veggie garden today. I started weeding and harvesting the lettuce, brought that in and rested. Then I went out again and did the same, bringing in another full basket. I then weed whacked under the garden boxes, and finally sprayed weed killer under the boxes and around the inside perimeter.

Our weather forecast for next week is rain every day except Thursday, and we have a 60% to 80% chance each day. That’s a LOT of rain. We may need a boat by the end of the week.


So that meant that we basically had today and tomorrow to try to get the yard and garden under as good control as possible before the rain starts. My husband mowed the yard.


I got the garden under control and will do a lot of weed whacking and clean up tomorrow.


My plants are doing well so far. Everything is looking healthy and happy.


I took this close up to show you that the lettuce, as well as providing lots of leaves for salads, is starting to form heads!

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Today’s Harvest 4-21-2020

This picture shows you the head lettuce leaves I harvested today. I had to wash each leaf carefully under running water, and it was easy to see that the hard rain had pretty much filled the squares high up on the plants faster than it could drain during the storm we had yesterday.


These are spinach leaves. I’ll use these in our salads, but I’m hoping that the plants will give me enough that I can freeze some for later. I’m looking forward to a nice, big salad tonight. Our weather is glorious today – sunny and 74 degrees. We did some freezer diving last night and will cook out tonight for the first time this season.


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Tomato Plants

We call this our ‘nook’ planter. It is one we built in a space on the backside of the house right beside our screened-in porch. It is somewhat sheltered from our weather, so it’s a kinder spot for plants.

We converted the nook planter and this longer brick planter from potting soil to the soil alternative we use in our vegetable garden. It’s called “Mel’s Mix,” and was developed by Mel Bartholomew of Square Foot Gardening. (You mix 2 parts Vermiculite, 2 parts peat moss, and 1 part each of as many different composts as you can find. )

Here’s another view of the longer brick planter. We have a total of 10 plants in the two planters. I was worried the hard rain would have broken the new plants, but happily, they came though fine. Fresh tomatoes sliced with salt is one of our favorite foods in all the world. Hopefully, we’ll have a nice crop this year.

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Tomato Harvest July 1, 2019

I’m feeling spoiled and rich after going out to check on our tomato plants this afternoon.

We’re enjoying sharing one or two (depending on their size) for lunch and again for dinner each day. I already feel that our crop has been worth every penny we paid for plants, cages, food, bug spray, bone meal, etc.  How could one feel down when looking at such a beautiful sight!


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How Does Your Garden Grow?

This is our garden, minus two tomato planters on the opposite end of the house. It’s a raised-bed, square foot garden.

“Raised bed” – because we built six 4’x4′ wooden boxes, put them on top of metal supports (like tables) at about my chest height, so I don’t have to get down on my hands and knees, or bend over double to garden.

“Square foot garden” – because the only ‘soil’ we have up here on top of our ridge line was trucked in so we could have grass around the house. We tried to have a regular garden, enriching the soil, etc. and it was a dismal failure. After several years I was delighted to find Mel Bartholomew and his book, Square Foot Gardening, where he explained that we could ‘create’ a growing medium much like soil ABOVE the ground and grow veggies!

We surrounded our garden with fencing, since we do have deer running around. Usually I have bright neon-colored tape running around the outside to warn the deer so they don’t run into the fencing. The rains and sun deteriorated the tape and I haven’t put more up yet. We have chicken wire around the bottom to deter rabbits and other cute critters from breaching the fencing, although I would think it would be difficult for them to climb up the metal legs to get to the veggies. Our garden door is looking a bit sad these days. We’ve had so much to deal with after losing so much of our electronic goodies in the recent storms that I haven’t bothered my husband with it. You might get a giggle out of the sign on the door. We did that when we first got the CNC set-up in the shop, where we can do computer-guided cutting of sheet metal. That was one of the first things we cut out. The poor thing is rusted now, but it’s one of my favorite things.


This sweet, oddly shaped thing is probably the world’s smallest cantaloupe. I have no clue whether we’ll actually get anything edible, but it’s fun to try.


I’ve never seen zucchini growing before and I’m fascinated. We may not get much of a crop, but I’m eager to check what we have each time I go out.


With all the rain and strong sun we’ve had, I can’t keep the weeds out of here, but I’m trying to keep them down as much as possible so the sweet red onions have room to grow.


This is the latest group of radishes. I’m hoping they do well. The last crop was better than I’m able to get at the store.


Here is today’s harvest. I was so pleased to see more ripe tomatoes. And these, except for one, all came from the plants in the long planter that had yellow leaves and were looking spindly recently. I added bone meal and some tomato food, and they have responded well, although they don’t look as healthy as the two plants in the planter beside the house. MAYBE it’s a good thing to have much less greenery – leading to better production of tomatoes….

And this is my first zucchini!  I have no clue why this one looks pregnant. The ones at the store don’t look like this. It’ll be interesting to see if it tastes good or not.

I was planning to spend more time outside this morning, but the wind picked up, the skies darkened, and I heard rumbling thunder. I hurried inside, closed the garage door, and prepared for the coming storm. My phone was even sending me messages about lightning and heavy rain right outside of Greenwood. We didn’t get the storm! NOW the sun is out again. Go figure.


Filed under Gardening, Healthy Eating, Square Foot Gardening - Raised Beds

Working in the Garden

We have two planters of tomato plants. We converted the planters from being regular planters – filled with regular and potting soil – to square-foot planters, filled with Mel’s Mix (peat moss, vermiculite, and compost.) The planter above is 8 feet long by about 2 feet wide. Last year I planted six plants in this planter and they soon grew to be a dense ‘jungle.’ This year I’m planting 4, trying to give them more space. I also read that I should prune them more to encourage fruit production, rather than greenery. I have to admit that this scares me a bit, but I’m going to try it, limiting their vertical growth in particular and trying to prune any large sideways branches. We LOVE sliced fresh tomatoes, and could eat our weight in them daily, so I’m HOPING that this experiment is successful…


This is the second tomato planter. It is in a ‘nook’ formed by the back of the house and our back porch. It is shielded from the elements more than the other planter, and sometimes results in the only plants that do well. These actually have some yellow blossoms!


And THIS – is a really nice weed, or SPINACH!

I am finding several like this, right in the middle of squares of Mel’s Mix in the garden planters – as I harvest and weed around them. I was unable to get the seeds to sprout in the greenhouse for some reason, and I was unable to find ANY spinach plants being sold locally, so in desperation I finally just planted some seeds in the middle of several squares in the garden and kept all of my appendages crossed. As you can see here, I put a popsicle stick in the soil showing ‘spinach.’  Appendages – including my eyes – are still crossed, because I’ve never seen spinach at this early stage, so it looks different from the plants I have purchased.

Since it is not raining right now, I’m planning to get out and tackle the last of the six 4’x4′ wooden box planters in my raised bed, square foot garden today. It’s so full I can’t tell what is there. I’ll report back, and then plan to see what exciting things the locals may have for me to plant to take the place of the things I’ve harvested. I’ll try to get pics of what’s out there now. I’m still stunned that so much needed harvesting already!

I plan to call friends and share the veggie wealth this weekend. :0)

I hope YOUR weekend is fun and productive!

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Filed under Favorite Things, Gardening, Healthy Eating, Square Foot Gardening - Raised Beds