Favorite Thing Friday: Garden Sprouts

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Three weeks ago, spring settled into the Arizona desert with 75 degrees warming the air and a big blue sky. Weather like that leaves no other choice but to till and plant this year’s batch of vegetable seeds.

Sometimes gardening is all about experimentation. Last year, I planted every seed in a seed starter grid in order to give each plant a good start. The harvest was good, but not as plentiful as the year before. So, this year, we decided to start the seeds directly in the garden box.

While I’m all for trying new things, I was a little nervous to plant seeds in soil that is a bit “tired.” Our dirt has gone through quite a workout with three consecutive years of gardening. We’ve been relatively good about returning nutrients via compost and rotating crops, but Arizona dirt can be challenging due to it’s high clay content.

For two weeks, I went outside hoping to see little bits of green, but only found brown. I was starting to think our experiment was a supreme failure, until I went out a few days ago and found tiny little babies poking through the ground.

Peas …

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The garden rabbit is already hoping for a snack!

I’m not sure if this is a sunflower or a cucumber, but the garden rabbit thinks it needs a little help…

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Help! I’m stuck!

Cowpeas …

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This little guy sprouted just the other day!

The tomato plants are starting to sprout new leaves …

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Back from the dead!

A new raspberry plant is taking off …

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When do we get berries??

The blueberry bushes we planted last year sprouted all new leaves and flowers. At he end of last summer they shed all their leaves and looked like dead sticks. Good thing we never got around to dumping what we thought was was a dead plant. This spring they came back to life and are just beautiful!

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Beautiful blueberry buds.

The garden rabbit will be sniffing around all spring, so stay tuned for his adventures in the garden.

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What’s your favorite thing?

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c.b.w. 2014

Welcome, Little Seedlings!

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What a difference a week makes in the garden! It didn’t take long to go from one tiny sprout, (See With Love, From the Garden), to almost an entire tray of rapidly growing newborns. As usual, my happy little garden is a source of inspiration for my muse when it comes to photography and haiku poetry.

My little heart-shaped early bird has already tripled in size (the little guy on the right), while zucchini leaves are pushing their way to the surface. When I went to bed the night before, the zucchini baby in the front hadn’t even broken through the dirt, but when I came home from work the next day he was busy trying to break free of the seed casing. To catch this moment is my small miracle for the week!

The cocoon shatters
Leaves unfurl, ready to sing
Sun-kissed miracle

Seedlings, March 2013

Zucchini and Radish Seedlings
Photo by: c.b.w. 2013

The beans are growing fast and reaching for the sun, while the sunflowers race to catch up!

Sunbeam catchers reach
Golden veins and thirsty stems
Life newly rooted

Garden Beans and Sunflowers, March 2013

Garden Beans and Sunflowers
Photo by: c.b.w. 2013

The garden rabbit came out of hiding to see what all the ruckus is about! Hey, there little bunny, leave those peas alone!

Garden Rabbit and Peas, March 2013

The garden rabbit checks out his future snack!

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c.b.w. 2013

Haikus From My Garden

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Little plants grow up
From tiny pot to garden
Be brave and take root

My little zucchini is growing fast!

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Little bunnies wait
Nibble, nibble new spring leaves
Watch out! The gardener!

Two weeks ago this pea plant was barely an inch tall!

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Red, yellow, purple
Petals flutter all day long
Closed at night, sleep tight

Such a bright little flower!

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c.b. 2012

My Little Garden

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For the first time in a few years, I decided to get in the spirit of Spring and start a garden.  The backyard has been neglected for far too long and I have a hankering to dig in the dirt!  Two weeks ago, I started some seeds in preparation for a vegetable garden that will eventually fill a space off the back patio and a flower garden by the front door.  So far, its been a soothing and joyful experience to watch my garden take its first breaths.  It reminds of a Chinese proverb that hasn’t lost its truth despite several thousand years:

He who plants a garden plants happiness.

With it being so warm lately, it didn’t take long for my seedlings to poke through the surface and show off their little green leaves.  I call them my “babies” and I’m so excited to watch them grow each day.  And they are growing fast!  Maybe its because I talk to them and put them under the wind chimes, (they say plants grow best with “music” and conversation!).  Of course, it’s  far more likely the beautiful weather in Arizona this time of year is the real reason.  The sun is out all day and it’s a perfect 80 degrees.

I’ll be posting pictures as my little garden grows!

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My sunflower babies reach for the sun while a little “rabbit” watches.  He better not nibble on these little guys!

Sunflower Seedlings

Little beans, cucumbers, chives, and zucchini, greet my little “squirrel.”  There will be trouble if he eats anything but that acorn!

Vegetable Seedlings

To give my seedlings a little encouragement, I potted some flower plants and arranged them around the trays.  There’s nothing like a little color liven the place up! Hibiscus and pansies are the perfect babysitters.

Red Hibiscus

Pansies are such a happy flower!

These little miracles are such wonderful reminders joy and optimism.  When a new plant pushes its way towards the sun, I can help but smile and be thankful for the wonder that is life.

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c.b. 2012