My yard is pushing a late spring vibe. Pink peonies burst onto the scene early this week. Their blowsy blooms seduce me but seeing ants zipping around their petals, I resist leaning in.


My mother-in-law, a flower felon, now knows we have at least three in full bloom. I’m sure we’ll be missing a couple after dinner tonight.

New growth sprang from the spirea after her rough move across the lawn. We saved her during the deck build. I worried a bit because we asked one of the builders to finish digging it out. His process included a pick-axe and a bare minimum of dirt on the rootball. As so often happens, I worried for nothing.

Spirea - 5/17/17

The columnar boxwood seem to be thriving after its move, too.

Boxwood - 5/17/17

During the time when we were moving these shrubs, I watched a gardening program where an expert recommended only moving shrubs in the fall. She declared that any shrubs moved in the spring would need to be pampered throughout the summer, so I’m pampering all I can! The water flows freely at our house right now.

With the passing of the final frost date, we finished planting the vegetable garden.

Vegetable Garden - 5/17/17

I’ve planted beans around my snow peas. I hope the peabrush withstands the pressure of all of these excited snowpeas reaching for the sky.

Snow Peas & Bush Beans - 5/17/17

Little bean seedlings showed up on Tuesday and have continued to poke their heads out of the soil.

I installed a cucumber between the beans and broccoli. It’s supposed to bush instead of vine, which I hope will keep it from expanding all through the garden.

Cucumber - 5/17/17

This little guy promises to provide us with cucumbers for our summer salads. Pickles will wait until next year.

A butterfly played in my broccoli while I took pictures today. Those little babies are expanding rapidly, as are the radishes in the background.

Broccoli Butterfly - 5/17/17

Meanwhile, the basil sits proudly at the end of our rows of tomatoes.

Basil & Tomatoes - 5/17/17

In our zeal to grow tomatoes again, we bought five different varieties: San Marzano, German Striped, Cherokee Purple, Brandywine and Granny Bradley. While I’m familiar with the San Marzano and Brandywine, I have to investigate the others. Will the Cherokee Purple be really purple? How stripey will the striped tomato be? Who is Granny Bradley and why did she like pink tomatoes?

Mother’s Day morning brought our zucchini to the sunlight.

Zucchini - 5/17/17

And the watermelon showed up today – just in time for us to install our new soaker hoses!

Watermelon - 5/17/17

Parsnips are a no-show at this point. They are my problem child. My sweetie loves them, so I bought a packet of seed, but finding a place for them is difficult because they weren’t in my original plan. Since they take so long to mature, I put them on the edge of the garden where the onions will eventually be completely removed.

I know I planted them on the east side of one of the beds, but I have no idea which one. Since I made no notes, I’m planting my next group on the east side of the western bed. With two to three weeks before the seedlings show up, I may be playing a losing game, but one more try might still produce parsnips.

I feel like Farmer LA as I work the soil and water all of my new plants. However, the weeds don’t know to fear me yet.

Weeds - 5/17/17

Actually, I might be a little afraid of them.