Tuesday, December 31, 2013

It's beginning to look a lot like Spring

Once Christmas is over I am ready for Spring. I am not a lover of winter and cold. I like warm weather, sunshine, flowers and greens leaves on trees. Lately, something I look forward to after Christmas is getting my garden ready for planting. Living in Las Vegas we can plant and grow things almost all year long. My parsley survived the below freezing temperatures we had back in the beginning of December and it's still growing so well. I planted it in August. I just picked a strawberry today - since I planted my strawberry plants last February we've had fruit from it practically all year. Sometimes just one or two berries at a time, but it's fun to pick and eat your own. Today I worked in the garden covering my asparagus with dirt and getting ready for it to start growing soon. I usually get the first asparagus sprouts in February and it grows until about July. Tomorrow I am going to plant lettuce, spinach and some more herbs(basil and parsley since that is what I use the most in cooking). In February I will plant green beans and then in March I will plant Butternut squash, pumpkins and watermelon. I have not gotten those to grow yet, but I am hoping this year I can get something. I bought a peach tree last year and planted it in the fall and I just ordered a blueberry bush that will come in February for planting. If you don't have the yard space for a garden or if you're new to gardening you can try a container garden. Get a few pots, fill them with some good soil and plant a few things you like to eat. Some good plants to grow in containers would be strawberries, lettuce, spinach, herbs. You can even plant pumpkins, watermelon or other vine plants in a container. I also love planting flowers so I put some new yellow pansies in my front yard and I have some flower seeds coming in the mail that I will plant throughout the garden for some color. If you want to learn more about gardening BYU has a FREE online gardening class. Click here and then scroll down and click on the gardening link.
These are the strawberry plants I put in last February. The leaves are yellow and red from the cooler temperatures but soon they will green up and start producing white flowers and lots of strawberries. These plants will produce fruit for the next 3-5 years.

I planted this parsley in August in this little pot to see how it would grow. It survived the cold snap in December and is growing great. I love having it to toss into soups, Italian dishes and any recipe that calls for parsley. Fresh herbs just make things taste better. Some herbs can grow all year in Vegas - or when it gets cold you can bring your pots indoors and have a kitchen herb garden.
The lower portion I am going to plant lettuce (3 different kinds) as well as spinach, parsley and basil. The top potion is where my asparagus is. The asparagus starts growing in February here because of the warm temperatures. Asparagus takes 2-3 years to get established and then it will grow for about 15-20 years. It grows well here and takes very little care.

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