Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Giving Gardening a Go

I have never had a green thumb.  No, really, I am not being modest.  Go read this post where I almost killed this plant that I took home from my grandpa's funeral.

Those leaves are not supposed to be dropping like that...  It was like the tree on Charlie Brown Christmas - just sad

 My mom rescued the plant and it's alive and thriving.

You see, she has always been a masterful gardener.  Growing up, I had NO IDEA people actually bought produce in grocery stores.  Most of what we ate came form our garden, from potatoes to carrots to green beans to tomatoes to squash to - well, you name it, we grew it.  Truth be told, I was a whiny little child that did not appreciate the garden as it represented work.  Oh how I would whine and mope when my mom would ask me to go pick some green beans for dinner.  Now I am an adult and am envious of the produce my younger self had access to! 

This year, though, I decided to move outside of my comfort zone and give gardening another go.  My patio is pretty small, but there is certainly room for some plants.  I got a bit of a late start as I didn't get a chance to shop for plants until after the CFA exam, so I bought these little guys in their 'teen' stage of life.

Day 1 at Casa de Lisa.  L to R:  Roma tomatoes, green pepper, romaine lettuce, and a beef steak-type tomato




There was a week there where I really thought they were not going to make it...  My tomato plants started to yellow and they started to droop like the plant I had nearly killed in the past...  But then I exchanged a flurry of tweets with San and Kyria, who are also raising patio gardens, and I figured out I was actually under watering everything. After changing my watering routine from every other day to daily, the plants bounced back.  Phew.

They appear to be thriving now, which makes me so excited!


So imagine my excitement when I went to water them last week and found a bunch of little tomatoes!!


It's the little things in life, I tell you.  I've got about 8 tomatoes growing, which makes me so happy as I eat tomatoes like they are apples. 

I just love the outdoor space of my condo.  This is the first place I've lived where I have actually made great use of my outdoor space.  From the little bistro set where I've entertained family and friends to my new Weber charcoal grill, to my little patio garden, it's the perfect little outdoor space for me.  And of course, the view sure doesn't hurt.  ;)

Luckily, a good friend will be taking care of my plants while I am gone.  Her husband is apparently a watering fanatic so I know they are in good hands.  :) 

Do you have a backyard or patio?  Do you have a green thumb? 

20 comments:

missris said...

We have indoor plants that D is in charge of because I am definitely a plant killer. I think I also get the watering wrong :( It's complicated!

Marlys said...

I have never done container gardening so I know it is a challenge, but your plants look wonderful! Do you use miracle grow to fertilize? I do with my flowers, but am not sure if you do the same with veggies? Good luck!

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

That's so cool that you grew up eating FRESH produce. Lucky girl! And I love that you're taking advantage of your outdoor space now.

I've never had great outdoor space. My last condo finally had a balcony, but because it was on the 5th floor and a couple blocks from the lake, it was SUPER windy up there. I lost many flowers due to the wind. =( Now, we have outdoor space, but it's terrible space and the sunlight isn't very good and I'd be lying if I told you I'd be any good at remembering to water my plants. That said, I do water our lawn twice a week and it isn't completely yellow yet! =)

abbi said...

Love it! I seem to be able to grow things like trees and vegetables that do not necessarily need to look neat and pretty. I'm pretty bad with flowers! We have a small garden that I love, some years are better than others, hope my tomatoes do well this year and have lots to make a few batches of tomato sauce to freeze!

Leigh said...

We have a backyard and I have zero plants right now. Hoping to pick up some flowers to put in planters shortly....that's about the extent of my gardening though!

Raquelita said...

Alas, my thumb is not only not green, it is black. I have killed every plant I've ever had save one. One of my best friends in Spain is an agronomist and he just shakes his head and laughs at me.

Barb Geier said...

They look great, Lisa! Today they'll probably need an extra drink because it's going to be a hot one out there!!! Nothing beats a vine ripened tomato!

Nora said...

I really wanted to plant some outdoor flowers (we have this one little brown patch of dirt in the front and back of our house that has nothing it) but haven't done it yet. I think it's too late, though I may get some fall flowers? I'm not great at watering. I worry and obsess over bugs and things harming the plants and then I get frustrated when they start to die.

I am managing to keep a catcus alive (mostly) that Knight's family brought us back from AZ. It's kinda cool since it needs SO little water!

Alli said...

That's awesome! I would love to grow veggies, but have no love of decorative plants. My feeling is this, if I have to take that much care of something it better have the capacity (and desire) to cuddle with me which means I'm willing to take care of a boyfriend/husband, small child or dog. One of the many reasons I hate cats is that they don't want to cuddle either which puts them in the same category as house plants to me.

pinkflipflops said...

I do not like the work gardens require. We have a huuuuge yard and honestly coudl grow everything but umm we lazy. Though we did by a rotallier this year. Some friends are using our garden this year as well and combined we have broccoli, green peppers, jalepenos, roma tomatoes, pumpkins, watermelon, sunflowers, corn, aspargus and other stuff.

Kelly (She Wears a Red Sox Cap) said...

Oh man, I so want to have a garden like this! Believe it or not, I was kind of into gardening as a child (not REALLY, but I had a little garden I liked) and my dad would always ask me to water the plants when he was away on business. It was a chore I didn't mind as much as all the others :) In my adult life though I have totally sucked at gardening. I even managed to kill a cactus once. True story. Maybe when I get back from all the trips this summer I'll be able to plant something... I'd love to have fresh veggies like that!

Lisa-Marie said...

I love that all your plants are edible - one tip - if they start to grow flowers, snip them off!

It's great that you are using your outside space for a little bit of self-sufficiency. :)

You've seen my garden. We intend to add veg to it. slightly insane since we can't keep up with the plants we already have!

Melissa said...

Yay!! I love gardens. My mom grows a lot herself too, and she's particularly good at tomatoes. My mom has a green thumb- you should see the house! So many plans everywhere. I've always had trouble keeping plants alive but I think it's something you just need to be attentive to and after a little bit of practice you get the hang of it. And it sounds like you're on the right track! Grocery produce will never ever taste as good as homegrown, so you've got a good thing going. Also your patio looks adorable. :)

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said...

I do have a backyard, but haven't really tried my hand at gardening. The hubby has always done that ... I hope to learn.

Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

I tried it last year but it did NOT go that well. This year Eric is growing some herbs and I am managing the flower bed - which I really need to weed!! It's going much better. I think a big problem last year was our backyard didn't get enough sunlight as our townhouse is very shaded. I one day would like to have a yard with a big garden and grow most of my own produce though! One day!

San said...

Oh, I am so excited about your little garden... and isn't it the coolest thing to see your own veggies grow??!

I eat tomatoes like apples, too, by the way.

I have asked a neighbor if she can water my plants while we are away and I hope she will take care of them :)

Shoshanah said...

We had a garden, although we mainly succeeded with herbs instead of actual produce. Our biggest issue was that ants kept trying to build homes in the herbs, so to get rid of them we basically had to poison our herb garden. And basically know we don't have one...

Cherry Blossoms said...

That is awesome! I have also been a tomato kick this summer.

Caroline said...

Awesome! I love how you can see the city buildings in the background of those pictures, cool effect!
When I was little I would help my dad plant flowers in our backyard and such but that's as much as a green thumb as I have. I don't have anywhere to plant things right now, but I always envisioned myself someday having a little garden with basil and tomatoes and stuff : )

Kyria @ Travel Spot said...

Yay! They look great! I was going to do a post about mine, but, as you know, they got a little wilty with the move and they are finally looking better!!

My family grew a few things, mainly tomatoes and peppers, when I was growing up and you are right, I took it for granted. We used to have to throw tomatoes away! *for shame!

I hope you are enjoying your vacation right now!!!