I have been happy overall with my garden this year. I have plans to expand next year. I am going to try square foot gardening.
Here is a selection of photos from my garden.
Here is the dill. As you can see, it went wild!
I harvested the seeds. I wish I had dried some leaves. I will have to do that next year. I like to use that in my homemade dip. I also dried a lot of basil.
I grew butternut squash, by accident! The seeds came up from my compost. When it sprouted, it looked just like the cucumber I had growing in the pot, so I didn't pull it.
I ended up getting two small squashes from that plant. They were both the size of my hand. They each made a nice lunch portion size for myself. They were delicious!
These are my Purple Beauty Bell Peppers. I thought they would be sweet, but they taste the same as green bell peppers. However, I noticed a couple turning red, instead of purple. I let them stay on branch until they were almost completely red. I picked them last night and ate them in a salad. They tasted great, as sweet as red bell peppers should be. Next year, however, I will be growing red peppers. We just like them better.
My tomatoes have disappointed me. I did not know that heirloom tomatoes are known for cracking. The first few that ripened were so bad I couldn't eat them. There seem to be plenty now that aren't cracked. I hope they stay that way. :) Plus, my attempt to keep away the Tomato Hornworms with my Marigolds has been unsuccessful. The marigolds didn't get enough sun, they were too close to the tomatoes. I have found a few big, fat worms--they make me so mad!
Of course, we had to grow some flowers. We planted a couple of giant sunflowers for fun. And a row of zinnias to cut and make arrangements with. I love the zinnias because they are so easy to take care of and they attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
I harvested plenty of cucumbers and made homemade pickles. I had an abundance of basil and made lots of pesto. Click here to see my post on pickled jalapeno peppers. However, I did not know much about cilantro and didn't get to harvest much before it bolted (flowered). I do have a second batch growing now, so I hope to harvest before the frost.
When the dill was done producing, I pulled them out and planted carrot seeds in their place. I was so happy that they sprouted and were thriving and then I discovered that they are not carrots, they are dill!!! The dill reseeded itself. So no carrots this year, but more dill. This time around I will dry the leaves.
I made a second attempt at growing a pumpkin. This time I planted in a spot that gets more sun and warned my husband not to run over it with the lawn mower! I planted it around July 1st. It seemed a bit wilted for a while, so I worked in some bone meal (but now I think it was from the excessive heat). It is doing great now (see below), but no pumpkins yet.
I did notice some mildew on my pumpkin leaves. I heard of a natural remedy of 1:9 parts milk to water. I sprayed the leaves with this mixture and they started looking better, but then we started having a really rainy season, so that's not helping.
My cucumber vines really slowed down producing so I took them out and planted more seeds. I was happy to see that the harvest time was short, only 50 days. So, come October, we'll be making more pickles. (Hopefully. The little sprouts seem to be slow-growing, probably the lack of sun from all this rain.)
I'm thinking of trying out a fall batch of lettuce when I pull the pepper plants out. And I really want to plant some garlic. It has to be planted in the fall. I will probably put it in when I pull the basil out.
Anyway, that's my update. I hope it is encouraging to you. I don't really know what I'm doing. I just check out some books from my library, do some research online, ask friends' advice, and experiment. You can do it, too! Just give it a try.