For lunch today, we had a salad from the garden, with arugala, sorrel, lettuce, spinach, radishes, and chives. (We threw in some olives too, but no, I don’t have an olive tree here in northern Vermont.) It was so satisfying, even magical, to sit on the porch and look out at the garden as we munched on the produce I had just harvested.
I spent hours in the garden, and it’s almost there. I’m not sure exactly how to describe my garden, but I think that over the years it has evolved into a sort of hybrid of cottage and kitchen garden, with a little chaos and a little control– flowers, herbs, and vegetables mixed in together.
I finally transplanted all my tomato and pepper plants into the raised bed greenhouse, interspersing them between the cool-weather crops that I planted a month ago–lettuce, arugala, mesclun, spinach, radishes. I learned recently from my gardening guru friends Tim and Peggy Cahill that eggplant doesn’t really need hothouse conditions like the tomatoes and peppers do here in Zone 3, so I put them into a regular bed and that freed up quite a bit of space.
I planted seeds for two rows of bush beans and one vertical row of cucumbers, and I transplanted the brussel sprout seedlings that I got from Tim and Peggy into one of the beds, too. Furthermore, Tim gave me a beautiful zucchini plant, and I decided to transplant it right into the ground, with a trellis so it can be trained vertically.
The vegetables I will have this year are: cauliflower, cabbage, kale, carrots (if I’m lucky), bush beans, eggplant, tomatoes, peppers, three different kinds of lettuce, arugala, spinach, radishes, broccoli, brussel sprouts, peas, swiss chard, onions, leeks, turnips, beets, cucumbers, rhubarb, and zucchini.
I now have six flower/herb beds on the property, and I created a seventh today. Half of them are now cleaned up, weeded, and mulched. I populated the seventh bed without buying any plants–just took stock of various perennials/wildflowers I have already have plenty of, and divided them for transplanting.
Finally, I got a good start on my container herb garden. I put tarragon and basil seedlings into windowboxes and pots on the patio–I love my kitchen garden! I still have yet to plant the borage, anise, coriander, basil, cilantro, fennel, and dill. But my perennial herbs look pretty good: lemon and english thyme, oregano, sage, lemon balm, lovage, savory, chives.
And the most satisfying of all? The patch of lavender that I planted last year not only survived, but thrived. Yes, you can grow and overwinter lavender in Zone 3!