Disclosure: ProWorld provided materials to assist in this project. All opinions expressed within are my own. #proworldinc
It never fails. I have this great cart that I roll in and out of the garage, protecting my seedings from the cold. However, my notebooks of seed placement always end up failing me, as on the first beautiful day past the frost I regrettably run the the garden to plant all.the.seeds. Except, somewhere along the line, I end up forgetting which similar seeds I plant where – and the garden becomes a game of “what kind of squash” or “what kind of pepper” will I find! Heck, one year I ended up with small little yellow tomatoes, with no idea of where they had come from!
Certified Wildlife Habitat
If you have been following along on social media, you might have seen that our yard is now officially a Certified Wildlife Habitat according to the National Wildlife Federation. This means that we provide food, water, shelter, places to raise young, and engage in sustainable practices to ensure that our yard continues to serve as a habitat for wildlife in the coming years.
Our wildlife habitat has an ever expanding collection of both edible and non-edible plants, and easy, inexpensive garden markers are helpful for friends and family to determine what is edible, what is not, and if that plant that looks like a zucchini next to the lamppost is indeed squash or if it is a weed – yes, on occasion family and friends have helped pick our non-weed “weeds”.
DIY Garden Markers
Pro World, my source for all of my vinyl, sent over a batch of FDC ultra High Gloss Sign Vinyl, and I decided to use some scraps for my garden markers. I know you can write directly on the reusable plant labels, but the fact is YOU can write directly on the plant labels. I, on the other hand, get the heebie jeebies when the print is not precise. So, I took five minutes and typed all of my crops into my Silhouette software using “shorelines” font, welded the letters together so the word pulled off the paper as one piece, and moments later I was applying the labels to my garden markers.
I experimented a bit with offsetting the font to make it thicker. I can’t decide which I like better!
The State of Our Garden
The first of the red raspberries are coming in, so I snapped this photo…
Just as this bugger popped his head out of the leaves. So, after I ran squealing through the yard, I went back and snapped a photo.
The blueberries are also ready to pick, and my son who refuses to eat blueberries all year round, deems my fresh ones the best and only ones he will eat.
The blackberries are also starting to get some color. The branches are dripping with berries, so we expect to be sick of blackberries by summer’s end.
And the blue-black raspberries are getting some color – these little guys will be the true treat of the garden this summer.
A butterfly bush and yellow raspberries are in the front garden, though there are no signs of raspberries there yet. There is also a random zucchini behind the butterfly bushes. One of the kids must have dropped a seed there earlier in the season!
I bought this adorable butterfly house at our local Ace Hardware and set it in my berries.
Tomatoes, Peppers, Beans, and Peas
The tomato and pepper garden is doing nicely so far. There are lots of tiny peppers already and many flowers on the tomatoes.
And these are some unidentifiable peppers – can’t wait to see what they are come early fall!
We’ve been snacking on green beans and peas for the last several weeks. However, with three hungry boys and a husband, none have actually made it inside the house yet.
The Squash Garden and Broccoli
The squash garden also doing well. We are going to be eating summer squash daily for several weeks, as there are at least a dozen that will be ripe this week. In the far corner is a pumpkin, the spaghetti squash are in the middle, and a few sunflowers are protected from pests in the back. The cucumbers under the trellis are much smaller than the rest of the plants in the garden. My first batch did not transplant well – so I direct sowed more seeds a few weeks ago to help the garden recover.
We have some broccoli starting to floret, too which should make for some awesome dinners – if the kids let me have any!
The lavender looks and smells lovely.
We have been experimenting with collecting rainwater without a gutter. Because we have a garden way beyond the reach of any hose, we want to collect water to help on dry days. I attached a bucket with a hole on top to try to maximize the water we collect. We have only has a passing shower here or there, but we do have a splash of water in the bottom. I’ll let you know more after the next big rain!
We are proud to have a Certified Wildlife Habitat so that we can do our part to ensure our world is one our kids will want to live in someday!