Garden Grows

comments: 112












I have been enjoying our little veggie patch so very much lately. I love being out there. I put my little garden bench in between the beds, put my feet up on the boards, and contemplate much. So far the slugs have been held at bay, thanks, I guess, to Sluggo and crumbled eggshells around the most heavily damaged beets. Everything is in the ground now, and I've planted a new round of spinach and lettuce in between other, slower growing things like the butternut squash and potatoes (though now that those have come up they are growing like crazy, so hopefully there will be enough sun for the lettuce planted around them). Some things, like the cucumbers and squash, look stunted; they seem happy enough, but they haven't gotten much bigger at all. My cabbage definitely has tiny holes, most likely from cabbage worms, though I haven't seen them or any evidence of them other than the holes; I may do something about it if they get worse.

People in the neighborhood have asked me why I put the little rock circles around certain plants. I put them there because I was too lazy to go up and get the wheelbarrow to collect the rocks after we used them to hold down those little paper tents a few weeks ago. I think they are expecting a different answer, but no, just lazy old me. They probably do offer a little bit of warmth and protection after all, maybe?

We planted ten more foxgloves this last week. They are one of my favorite flowers but they don't seem to ever reseed themselves for me. Apparently I have trouble with the whole "biennial" concept. Some of mine come up as rosettes of leaves with no flowers year after year. Or what seems like the one exact same plant flowers year after year. Could that be? I feel like I've been trying to grow them for ten years now and and am no wiser to their fairyland ways.


LOL on the foxgloves! My husband is (and I was) in the nursery business for many, many years and I can't get them to come back either. I feel like such a failure!

I wonder if the foxglove is regional? I never had it re-seed in Oregon either, but in Virginia, where we are now, it goes absolutely crazy. We had one single plant, in a pot, last year, and this year we had TWELVE all over our flower beds.

These garden shots are enlivening my soul. Inspired. You have the gift of creating beauty, no doubt.

everything looks so lovely. I was late starting off seeds this year, which is just as well considering how rainy it was.

But, now I have peas, potatoes, peppers in the garden, with squash, pumpkin, tomatoes & sunflowers inside. Lettuces too. I'll have to do something to protect those from slugs when I plant them out. Apparently, they don't like copper. I've never tried it, but you can buy copper strips to put around plants/pots, and that is meant to deter them. Perhaps I'll give that a try this year.

I keep trying to learn more about gardening, but as with many things, the more you learn, the less you know! A couple years ago I grew mixed lettuce, and had so much we ate salad almost every day, and still shared some with the neighbours. This year the plants are tiny and limp, or going to flower already. My second attempt at radishes is a bust, so I won't bother with those again. At least I know I can always grow a jungle of tomatoes, and plenty of fresh herbs.

I love foxglove too, and put some in my new front garden. It's just starting to flower now. I took the precaution of putting in small plants last fall, which are flowering now, and just added some new plants for next year. I'm also sprouting some seeds inside, to plant out later in the summer. I'm determined to have foxgloves in my cottage garden!

Your roses are gorgeous, by the way. I wish Montreal was better for roses, but what few will grow here seem to be prone to all kinds of pests. They're just not worth the trouble, usually.

WHOA what kind of roses are they?? They are gorgeous!!!

Digitalis mertonensis behaves like a true perennial for me; great big blossoms every single year. It is pretty shades of pink, too, just up your alley.

Oh your roses look magical. I've been too busy with preparing to move, a new job, and everything in between to plant anything this year (that is true laziness).

Check the zones on the floxglove you get - sometimes they are hardy and will reseed while others may not be. It's like that with peonies here - I just get the hardy ones because I don't want to dig them up before the frost.

I can't grow foxglove either. After 26 years, I've finally quit torturing myself. They are a favorite of mine too. Your garden is growing well. My guess on tiny holes are flea beetles.

Ohh, so beautiful!

Candace says: May 31, 2012 at 09:05 AM

Isn't that funny? The very things we wish would re-seed and spread are the ones that never do.

When we bought our house, we had tons of foxgloves sprouting up everywhere, I assume they had been re-seeding year after year because I never planted them. However, when I made an effort one year to actually collect the seeds and then spread them around our yards, I got maybe one or two plants out of thousands of little seeds.

Sadly they're mostly gone now because we started a vegetable garden where they were most concentrated. I miss making those huge two foot tall bouquets with them.

Your garden pics made me realize I forgot to plant eggplant this year. It's not too late...

The roses in your top pictures are absolutely gorgeous. I'm glad your sitting around enjoying your garden. That's the way to do it.

Your garden - slugs and all - is "Glor-ee-us!" (sung to the Trogg's tune of "Glor-i-ah, G-L-O-R-I-A")!! I love those little rock circles, and the reason for their being, too!

Your garden looks like a little fairy tale! :-)

Susan D says: May 31, 2012 at 09:28 AM

Your garden is just gorgeous! The roses, foxglove, and the flagstones between the planting beds makes for a lovely, homey feel. Of course your pictures are gorgeous. Makes for a very serene feel to it all. Love it!

And here I was looking at those exact little rock circles thinking, "Look how tidy and organized and pretty her garden is. I'll NEVER be as cool as her!" haha. I'm not sure if it makes me feel better or worse that you are so much cooler than I am ON ACCIDENT. :) Your gardens are growing beautifully. Great job!

I'm so in awe of your outdoor space.. have been for a long time now. Just beautiful!!

Nancy Confer says: May 31, 2012 at 09:45 AM

Foxgloves are a funny plant. I tried for years and just kept planting in different spots and finally they decided they liked the front of my garden. With Foxgloves being tall, I would rather they had found a home in the back portion of my garden, but hey, I have Foxgloves coming up every year, so no complaints.


I wish we could do a little bit of a trade. I have trouble growing parsley, the easiest plant in the world to grow, but my foxgloves seem to have their own good life figured out in my garden! Thanks for the pretty photos.

oh i am biennial challenged too!! forget-me-nots never return! o have been trying for 20 years and have the worst luck...maybe i accidently weed them out?? xo love your flowdies...

Your Foxgloves are most likely hybrids and not the 'wild' kind of foxgloves. Hybrids do reseed themselves, but you will not get the same flower as the Mother Foxglove. Some of the seeds will make lovely green leafy rosettets, and some will produce leaves and then an approximation of the Mother's flowers. So, it is important to know if you are planting a hybrid or an heirloom foxglove if you are expecting it to reseed and provide you with generations of foxgloves. Choose an Heirloom variety. If all this sounds confusing, just ask for "Heirloom Foxgloves, not Hybrid, please." And if your nursery-person doesn't immediately 'get' what you are talking about, spend your money elsewhere!

I love the roses! What variety are they?

Actually, rocks can be great for keeping certain plants warm and evenly moist. Like our Vinca Vines, that grew over the edge of the pot I had them in, and rooted so deeply into the soil under the rocks that they now come back every year, and this year, we got flowers! In the midwest, vinca vines are an annual and normally have to be replanted every year, but they do love those rocks!

Cindy B says: May 31, 2012 at 10:18 AM

I love all your pictures. But the screen door is my favorite, and Clover of course. I bought an old screen door and put it on my back porch as I enter my house, just so I could hear it slam shut, like when I was a child. Brings back sure great memories. Your garden is a beautiful.

Such pretty photographs. I love Clover Meadow's sweet face. Her little expressions are precious. My mom has had corgis through the years. I would love to have one soneday.

Hey I was wondering if you've seen the new Penguin Threads editions of classic books. The covers are works of embroidery art and they are magnificent! I posted some photos on my blog if you want to have a look or I bet you could go to Penguin's site to see them.


Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


post a comment

About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at