New Fall Gardenscapes and Raised Beds

Fall is finally here! Bring on all the delicious fall crops, pumpkin EVERYTHING and cooler temperatures! Of course here in Florida, that means bring on the “still hot but less humid days”. Mr. GreenThumb has been hard at work getting our fall planter beds ready for the season. I say he has done an amazing job on these new planter beds.
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Raised planter beds are a great way to get your garden off to a great start. Especially in area where the soil is not the best quality. You can make the planter beds out of almost anything that is strong enough to hold a large amount of dirt. I have seen people make them with all kinds of material from plywood to cinder block even old tires! For the two beds show above, we used old wood from a structure that was torn down. Total score!

So far this fall I have been able to plant several varieties of vegetables and I am anxiously awaiting for harvest time to come! As you know, you are on this journey with me so I will be giving you updates on how these two beds are doing!

Let me know what you are planting this season in the comments below! Also I would love to hear that material you have used for your raised beds!

Until next time!

Much Love,

Eva

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Fall Planting in Florida

According to the weather man, we have had our first “cold-front”. For those of us here in Central Florida that means we didn’t break 90 Degrees Fahrenheit. If you are anything like me you put a light jacket on in the morning and by 9am you were sweating bullets!

Much like the temperature is different, fall planting is also on a bit of a different schedule in Zone 9. (what are zones in the gardening word?) During the summer, the scorching heat and heavy rain makes it difficult to produce the variety of vegetables we would like. While things like peppers, okra and eggplant grow well in the hot, muggy, rainy Florida summers, it can be difficult to successfully grow much else. And while I LOVE my successful peppers this year, I am ready for more variety!

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This week is the official start of fall and that means it is the BEST growing season in Florida! So I have begun to start my seeds. This fall I will be planing zucchini, yellow squash, a variety of different tomatoes, mustard greens, collard greens, swiss chard, beats, carrots, radishes and a variety of herbs, just to name a few! I am so EXCITED!

Collage 2015-09-21 17_36_29 I like using these mini greenhouses to help with the germination process. Starting your seeds is very important. Make sure you read the package to see if you should start them indoors or if you can sow them straight into the ground.

I’ll have an update soon when I am ready to transplant into the ground! Be sure to leave a comment and tell me what you are growing this fall!

Happy Fall planting!

Much Love

Eva

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Seed Addict! How to Save Your Own Seeds

Hello! My name is Eva and I am a seed addict! It may sound silly but I know my fellow home gardeners understand how I feel. On Friday of last week I picked a few items from my ridiculously large wish list on one of my favorite organic seeds website. It took me almost an hour to pick what I wanted to plant this fall! There are so many amazing choices! I also had to take into account that I already have a TON of seeds either left over from last season or that I have saved from my own harvest. I looked at the tracking number about 3 times a day to see where they were at and only three business days later I got my seeds! I was like a kid in a candy store!

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While buying seeds to start off or to ease your seed-addiction 😉 is exciting a fun, some people forget that saving your own seeds is not only rewarding but also FREE! One of the best accomplishments for me as a home gardener will always be when I see a plant growing with beautiful vegetables to feed to my family. What makes that feeling even sweeter is when I know that the plant came from a seed that was previously in a vegetable that I grew. Saving your own seeds is also a way to pass heirloom seeds down to future generations. The word heirloom refers to an item or object of value that is past on from one generation to the next. Therefore, an heirloom seed is a seed that comes from a plant that has been passed down from one generation to the next. In other words your children, your children’s children and beyond could be planting seeds from the same plants you are growing in your garden right now. Heirloom seeds that are passed down through many generations are considered to be very valuable to home gardeners and farmers.

Planting your own seeds is not only FREE but so easy to do! Some seeds require a little more attention then others depending on what kind of seed you are working with but they all follow the same basic steps: take the seeds out of the fruit, wipe off any remaining flesh and place in a glass or ceramic container in a non-humid, shaded place. Keep checking on them every few days and once they are fully dry (not sticking together or bending) your seeds are ready! One thing to keep in mind is if seeds are wet, like tomato seeds for example, try to stay away from placing your seeds on a paper plate or paper towel to dry. The wet seeds tend to get stuck to the paper and are difficult to remove. Using glass or ceramic is best. And of course, always plant organic, non-GMO seeds 😉

If you are just starting your garden or are in need of more seeds to plant some of my favorite companies to buy seeds from are Seeds Now, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and Seed Savers Exchange.

Happy fall planting!

Much Love!

Eva

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Year of the Pepper, They Say

I read an article recently that said 2015 was the year of the sweet pepper. With the amazing yields I have been harvesting out of just a handful of plants, I could not agree more! Not only are my sweet peppers doing well but my hot peppers are doing phenomenal as well! Marcos and I have been making all different kinds of yummy salsas and hot sauces. I do have to say that Marcos is the hot sauce making king! There is just no way I can go back to store bought hot sauces. And if you are wondering, no worries, there will be plenty of salsa and hot sauce posts to come. 😉

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I have been giving peppers away to friends and co-workers almost every week and I feel very blessed that I am able to give away food that is safe and free from chemicals. However one of the greatest feelings is when someone tells me that I have inspired them in some way. By hearing my story, more and more friends and family members are seeing the value in home gardening and are asking me to help them get started. Honestly that is what it is all about. If I can help just one person realize that they do not have to be a slave to the high-priced, chemical filled grocery store produce section, then I can drop the mic and call it a mission accomplished.

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Until next time!

Much Love,

Eva

P.S. – How many of you read the title of this post in Yoda’s voice? 😛 Yes, I’m a nerd, and proud 😀

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