Flowers Bring Life to the Garden as Vegetable Dwindle

“Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful: they are sunshine, food, and medicine to the soul.” –Luther Burbank

Leaves are falling to the ground as the wind loosens them from the tree branches. The garden is in a state of transition. Vegetable plants that don’t contain produce are being pulled up. Why continue to feed plant leaves with no reward of vegetables? Saves those ground nutrients for the next garden. The weeds have changed to yellow-brown coloring. However, the temperature changes have fooled some tomato plants to making new tomatoes on top of the dead looking plants. Silly plants it is fall not spring! Although, the flowers still continue to bloom.

Having a variety of flowers in the vegetable garden make transition times enjoyable, beautiful, and helpful to the garden. Marigolds are early bloomers in the spring, which will continue to do so until a hard frost kills them. I have found the dwarf varieties bloom more consistently. Marigolds are also beneficial to deter pests with their pungent odor. Zinnias flowers bloom in the heat of the summer all the way to a hard frost. They attract beneficial pollinators like wasp and butterflies. This was the first year planting a row of zinnias and I have seen a ton of butterflies. I definitely will plant more of them next year. Cosmos flowers are late summer bloomers as they grow rather tall for flowers, up to 3-6 feet! These flowers attract beneficial insects to the garden (to actually feed on other pest). Of course, flowers any where bring beauty to the space.

Flowers bring life to the garden as well as the gardener. God is the ultimate gardener and we are his flowers. God said he will supply you what you need. He wants us to be happy, even when seasons change. Flowers bring delight to the soul, a smile to the face, and often a memory to the heart & mind. Garden flowers have purpose throughout their life span. You have a purpose too. Have faith and follow his path. Pause from your journey every once in a while and enjoy these beauties he provides.

 

 

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Don’t Forget to Add Growth when you Add Plants to your Design

“Where you have a plot of land, however small, plant a garden. Staying close to the soil is good for the soul.” –Spencer W. Kimball

Having a garden takes time and careful planning, in order for it to be successful. You should do some research on the plants you want to plant. Or at the very least, read the planting instructions on the plant label. Make sure the plot of land will be big enough for your amount of plants. Or that you have enough containers, preferably one for each plant.

I like making diagrams for my garden. I even color coded the places where flowers were going this year. I design the garden, first off, to utilize crop rotation (not planting the same kind of plants in the same area 2 years in a row). Secondly, I take advantage of companion planting. Making sure the plants that are beside each other benefit each other whether by insect attraction or repellent, ground or shade coverage, and soil nutrient needs. Thirdly, the diagram shows me exactly where the plants are to be planted in the garden. Therefore, preventing me from accidentally pulling up good plants instead of weeds in the beginning growth of the garden.

Each year, I record the plant growths and any adjustments needed to make for the next year. The space I need for walkways and around the plants always changes. Next year, I will increase the amount of flowers I need to fill in the gaps from this year. I spaced the peppers out fairly well this time. They had enough room to grow but not too much for a ton of weeds to sprout. However, I forgot to add maturity growth for the pole beans and tomatoes. On paper, the spacing of the pole bean trellises  seemed to look fine. But now the beans are full-grown, the vines have reached across from one trellis to another making a tunnel of bean plants instead of rows. Likewise about the tomatoes. The 50 plants are in neatly spaced rows on paper and in the garden, with one exception Рvery small (if any) walkways between. I forgot to add the diameter of the tomato cages at the top and some tomato plants branch out quite a bit. So I have not only a bean jungle, but a tomato jungle too.

You can make diagrams or maps for your life too. Just be aware that the paths you plan may not always be the ones God wants you to go down. He doesn’t forget to leave room for growth. The more you seek him or research his design, the more room he will supply for your flowers and fruit to blossom and grow.