Friday, June 19, 2009

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Oak Leaf Hydrangea

During the late spring and early summer months here at Maryland Sled Dog Adventures LLC, we like to fill our days, evenings and weekends with gardening and relaxing since it's far too warm to dog sled. This year's cool and wet spring and summer has resulted in a lush and happy garden.

T-Bone relaxes on his dog bed

At present, Eric and I (thankfully with very little help from the sled dogs) have two 3 ft x 6 ft raised beds and several pots planted with annuals and vegetables and herbs. This year at Maryland Sled Dog Adventures, we are growing two types of tomatoes: early girl and a heirloom variety, yellow pear. We are also growing four different types of peppers: super chili, purple bell, and Italian frying peppers along with a Trinidad hot pepper which is being grown in a pot. Along with the tomatoes and peppers, we are growing burpless cucumbers, tomatillos, strawberries, and red leaf and romaine lettuce. Since lettuce is a cool weather crop here in Maryland and by early June has all been harvested, we've also interspersed our lettuce plants with garlic. In the past, we have not had great luck with root crops (by my definition anything that grows under the soil) so we're hoping our little garlic experiment ends well.

Trinidad hot pepper growing in a pot

Early Girl tomatoes in mid June

Super chili

Since both Eric and I enjoy cooking with fresh herbs we are also growing: basil, tri-colored sage, lemon thyme, English thyme, lavender, oregano, mint, and curly parsley. Most of our vegetables and herbs were either purchased at the University of Delaware's Ag Day or Valley View Farms in northern Baltimore County.

Everything is better with fresh herbs. Yum!

In addition to the vegetable and herb gardens, we've planted lots of annuals including, among others, impatiens, petunias, salvia, and begonias in window boxes and pots around the patio.

Impatiens and Petunias in Window Boxes

Bright annuals on the front porch

Sunflowers we planted with some free seeds we received

Blue Salvia
Also growing in the garden and providing color and texture are three specimens of my favorite flower: the hydrangea. Among our hydrangeas, our wonderful oak leaf hydrangea which has gorgeous fall foliage in addition to big white conical flowers throughout the summer. In addition to the oak leaf, we have two lace cap hydrangeas. Augmenting the hydrangeas, are lavender, hostas and lilies.

Hostas flank the back wall of our house

T-Bone keeps a close eye on the garden