Cottage Garden Goals & Update Spring 2020

We recently bought our first home, and in so doing the world of gardening on a larger scale opened up to me. My experience is limited, I'd done a few veggie plants here and there, helped my Mom and Grandma plant flowers and keep houseplants. I did a container garden that was only very marginally successful.

So with that -excellent- (ahem) experience under my belt, I dove in headfirst this year. We didn't know all of what was planted here and we are still finding out. We moved in November, and I knew that gardening is kind of a year round thing, so I looked up what needed to be done in Fall and found that I could plant garlic and bulbs.

I did two large pots of garlic. I don't think they'll take because they started to come up during a January thaw and I haven't seen sprouts since. I'll give it a bit and see, but I think they're goners.

I ordered several bulbs from Holland Bulb Farms. I got:
- burgundy fringe tulips
- tulips in shades of pink and white
- yellow and purple crocus
- Jean D'Arc crocus
- one peony
- drumstick aliums

and put those in where I thought they'd go well. I dreamed of lining the driveway with peonies, and then discovered this Spring that the previous owners had planted peonies in several other spots, so I'll have to see what I want once they've bloomed.

purple crocus

In winter there wasn't much I could do except plan, order some seeds, and start a compost heap. We did that and it is coming along nicely, though I won't be able to take compost from it this year.

I also wanted to start a Mary garden in a little spot in the woods where a few paths meet, and discovered wild rosebushes covering the area I'd chosen. I also found, in the woods near this spot, a pile of rocks out of which we were able to make a little hill.

The next order of business was fruit trees. It has long been a dream of my husband's to have a small orchard, and knowing that fruit trees can take a few years to establish and produce fruit I thought it would be best for us to at least start to get these in the first year. For our anniversary & valentine's day, I got us a pair of pear trees. These were delivered in the Spring and we planted them a few weeks ago.

one of the two pear trees

Next order of business was planning and starting seeds. I found seeds online for $1-3 each and ordered MANY varieties of ones I love. Then we got more seeds from our neighbor, from my Mom, from another smaller seed order... and I ended up with many little seedlings started all over my house and more to plant.

What I've started so far, and all the mistakes and successes: 

- nasturtiums which are doing beautifully
- sweet peas
- livingstone daisies
- falling in love poppies
- bells of ireland (leggy but doing great)
- snapdragons
- lobelia
- sweet alyssum
- mother of thyme (purple!)
- delphinium
- begonias
- moonflowers which sprouted and are huge

radishes which have sprouted beautifully in a container
kale which has not come up yet (too much rain?)
peppers which I put out when it was too cold and have to replant
snap peas which I'm a little late on
zucchini, lettuce, cabbage, etc. which I am waiting on and may need to replant
broccoli which sprouted with a low germination rate
- muscotte beans which are thriving
- onions
- carrots
- tomatoes (waiting to sprout)
- strawberries

What I still have to plant:

- cosmos
- German chamomile
- more tomatoes + more veggies
- melons
- squash
- replant seeds that failed or had low germination rates
- plant out all seedlings
- plant more herbs

I have oregano and mint plants indoors.

daffodils planted by the previous owners

Some of my garden dreams:

- I want to put a lavendar bush right by the front path, and I want to get the seedling from a local lavender farm.
- I want to plant lilies and other Marian flowers in the Mary garden, and continue to nurture it
- I want to line the side of first parking spot of driveway with peonies
- I want to plant more tulips and crocus
- I want a big, fenced, vegetable garden plot
- more fruit trees and bushes

and so we'll see how it goes! For more garden ideas I'm dreaming about you can check out my Pinterest board. I'm also sharing all these garden discoveries, successes, and failures on IG stories so you can follow along with me there if you'd like.

Do you have big garden dreams this year? I'd love to hear!