How does your garden grow?

By Amanda Cleary Eastep

The kale is in the ground…some of the plants–including tomatoes, peppers, and chamomile–that I started from seeds then transplanted several weeks ago when it STILL looked like this outside:


Coincidentally, the last of this week’s planting marked the end of my husband’s first week at a new job and moving in with me and my daughters after five years of marriage. Definitely a transplanting that will have to be nurtured…

I direct planted spinach, peas, carrots, Swiss chard (which have seeds that resemble some type of spice or, as Meg pointed out, the belly button of an orange)…

Swiss Chard seeds

…and Sultan’s Golden Crescent beans, a rare variety.


I transplanted the chamomile, most of which we started in eggshells; a method I would use again as the seedlings were more robust than those started in the plastic trays.

Chamomile seedlings, photo by Meg

“Why would you simply buy chamomile tea when you can do all this work instead?” my husband teased.



Just a side note on the condition of the soil…this is my sixth summer of fighting the clay. Honestly, you could make pottery. I’ve added peat, various mulches, some compost, manure, and this year, mushroom compost and it was the most workable it has ever been. I’ve also never seen SO MANY worms. BIG ones. The things I let Meg talk me into for the sake of her photography…


Mackenzie wanted to plant All Blues (potatoes) and Moon and Stars melons, which of course, we have no room for. So her grandpa helped her build a raised bed at his house where we planted the sprouted potatoes and melon seeds on Mother’s Day.



This is the first summer in our condo that we’ve mostly filled our small plot with food. Now to keep the rabbits out. I’m hoping our neighbor Fred (big fat cat) will help deter “visitors.”

3 thoughts on “How does your garden grow?

  1. Hi Amanda, I wanted to return the blog visit and thank you for taking the time to comment on mine. I was so amazed at the photo of snow! Crazy weather. I love that you’ve improved your soil so much. It’s the most rewarding kind of hard work there is.


    1. Hi, Leigh, I love your blog. It’s my “escape” from cubicle life. We are hoping to have a few acres in the next five years and admire the good, hard work you do.


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