Garden Still Growing

I planned a post a month or two ago about the success and death of my first garden (even referenced it in a post or two), but then, somehow, there was an unexpected change in weather, the heat dropped, moisture came in, and my plants survived! Aside from jumping for joy over what I thought was the perfect Texas summer (100+ degree days kept to a minimum), I was even more thrilled to keep my vegetables growing.

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For my peppers, the change in weather didn't just keep them alive, the change in weather made them THRIVE! We have cherry peppers, jalapenos (tons), banana peppers and bell peppers.

We started with seeds and only a few small plants. Two of the pepper plants (one from seeds, one from an over fertilized and almost dead plant) are now as tall or almost as tall as my bush.

My peppers weren't the only weather survivors, though. After nearing its last breath, my basil LIVED!

If I could have kept anything alive, I would have definitely chosen the basil, my favorite. Do you know how much I love pesto? Or how many recipes call for fresh basil? Enough for me to wish I had the herb on hand year-round.

Some other plants that hung on were our tomato plants - heirloom, beefsteak, cherry and grape. They are currently producing at a bare minimum and are limped over from the summer heat beating, but whether I get one more tomato off of them or not, I don't care because they gave me more than enough produce this season.

At one point we had so many tomatoes that we had trouble even trying to pawn them off to others.

As far as the rest of our planting efforts... we grew beautiful sunflowers from seeds.

Our Swiss chard/spinach/wildflower seeds bloomed but never really rooted. However, even after no attention or watering, they still won't grow or die.

And the blooming bell pepper seedlings that our dog dug up somehow revived (with no attention).

So what's next? Well, we're currently pickling our load of peppers.

And once this year's crop dies (because of the way-too-early cold front we're having), we'll take the winter off and plan to get a much better jump start on next year. I complained this summer that I was too young to have a garden and swore to not have one next year, but the pride of our success has just been too much to quit!

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