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Tithonia ‘Torch’ Seeds

September 6th, 2017

I grew tithonia a few years ago for the very first time, my garden hasn’t been without it since. Even though I’m not a huge fan of orange flowers, I grow these. Tithonia provides a very important source of late season food for pollinators, particularly migrating monarchs.

Not only are these plants great for pollinators, they’re tough plants, thriving in poor, dry soil. Mine are blooming like crazy in the less than stellar side of the garden. They also grow fairly tall, making them a really nice border around the vegetable patch. I use them as a wind break since they grow to about 5 feet tall.

Every time I’m in the garden, there are monarchs on the tithonia and the echinacea. Both very important plants to have in our gardens for pollinators. If you are interested in growing these for monarchs, hummingbirds, and bees, I’m saving loads of seeds and they will be part of my seed launch this winter.

What’s your favorite beneficial plant for monarchs and other pollinators?

The Main Vegetable Garden

June 24th, 2016

Every year I think that the gardens are not coming along as fast as I’d like, then I look at photos from last year and the two years before that. Each year the gardens get better and better. This is exactly why I love to take lots of photos of the garden and the plants I’m growing. Some plants are grown year after year, some are new.
yellow wonder peas
Main Vegetable Garden 6
Main Vegetable Garden 7
Main Vegetable Garden 8
Right now the main garden back behind the barn is looking lovely. It’s filled with tons of flowers this year, something that I’ve never done before. One of my goals was to have a small cutting garden and lots more food for pollinators.
tall snapdragon
spring cassis
tithonia torch
The phacelia cover crop is blooming beautifully and as described, the bees and other pollinators love it. More on this lovely cover crop option in the coming weeks.
lacy phacelia
I also have a small section of the main edible garden that is dedicated to nursery stock. These are plants that I’m growing out to size or monitoring growth rate and features. Working in the main garden is starting to become much more pleasurable. After three years of pulling weeds continuously, I’m finally on top of them and I don’t have to spend much time at all on that chore. Now it’s more about enjoying what’s there and expanding borders to finalize size and layout. Soon there will be hedges, fences, and perennial borders…..stay tuned.

How had your garden changed over the coming years?

Reading & Watching

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.