July in the Electric Garden

girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)July 19, 2012

My old garden isn't looking so hot, but the new garden looks great (so clearly I need to do some more soil work in the old garden, since that is what makes the new garden so special!!).

Here's the Circle Garden entrance (more photos to follow!)

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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

More circle garden. It's about the size of a 'regular' front yard here...there just isn't a home on this lot.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:39PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Here is the center of the circle garden. The "edges" or perimeter are still growing. I bought very small shrubs: mostly in 4" cups or bare root last fall, so it will take another year or two to see some good growth on them. So for now we concentrate on the middle :)

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:41PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

The circle garden has 4 quadrants, partially inspired by an herb spiral and partly inspired by the faiths of the three of us who turned soil and placed stone. This quadrant is mostly for growing garlic chives and annual herbs like borrage and dill (and will host cool weather annual herbs like chervil and cilantro). I've been struggling with the sage since it's been so wet here. Next time I'll place it under a tree where it will be drier!!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:45PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

This is the coneflower quadrant. Lots of other things in there but the main crop here is coneflowers so we can harvest roots to use. I am pretty pleased that the agastaches like it here a lot too. I bought more seed to add many more next year.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:47PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Please ignore the giant pile of mulch in the back...I just wanted to show you my desire to fill in all the cracks and crevises along the walkway. The little annual zinnias are so handy for this, along with culinary thymes, creeping thymes and creeping oregano. Yes, that is a floppy purple kale. It needs to be removed but I haven't had the heart to take them out!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:52PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

The driveway garden is INSANE this year. See that delicious compost? I tucked it all around (and still have some left!!!) and mulched everything well...then it started to rain and get to 100 plus degrees. Almost everything in this bed LOVES that kind of weather and is at least 6' tall now. It takes awhile to get going, but will flower from about mid-june to November.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:54PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

This is the other end of the new driveway garden, and you can see the hot plummy purple fence we had installed this year. Previously it was a ramshackle chain link fence, a tornado victim - half falling down...I love the new fence! The yellows and oranges look great against (in my opinion).

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:56PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

I love morning glories but they can be weedy here, so I don't plant many. However they do cover up the climbing roses that look icky in the humidity and summer rains we get - taking the focus off the flowerless "foliage" (or de-foliage as is usually the case :)

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:58PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Here's the veggie garden!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:59PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Finally, a few favorite single zinnas. Orange cactus starts us off. Cactus zinnias tend to be disease magnets, they don't last long here so I enjoy 'em while I can. Love their crazed, fluffy heads!!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 3:00PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

While the orange cactus zinnia is a little slow getting to the party, the pink cactus zinnia is puttin' on a show!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 3:01PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Lastly, this is seed collected from a candycane zinnia in yellow with red stripes. I LOVE the hot reddish/orangeish color and the shading into the center. ELECTRIC. I wonder what the other flowers will look like? This is half the fun of seed saving!!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 3:02PM
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jkom51(Z9 CA/Sunset 17)

GGG, I've been waiting for photos of your new garden space, and they're just gorgeous! Love the circle garden idea and what you've planted there.

Wow, can't imagine 100-degree heat. I'm dying when it gets a wimpy 80-degrees here in the SF Bay Area, LOL....

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 4:36PM
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nulty

Very interesting garden and all its sections,..its so true what you wrote about collecting seeds,..its sure is fun seeing what they produce.

You have given me the notion to add a Morning Glory to my garden as i have a Honeysuckle on an Arch and its not producing good blooms.

Your Creeping Tyme and Oregano really look well as they fill in the crevices,..looking forward to seeing your garden again,..thank you for sharing.

Philip

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 8:19PM
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valree3(Nv zone 4)

Thanks so much for sharing your gardens! What a beautiful yard you have. I can't imagine being able to garden into Nov. Lucky girl!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 8:52PM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

Wonderful!!! Makes me wish to be young again.
I was going to comment on FB, but we are not friends. Hahahaha.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 9:00PM
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beachgrub(4 northern michigan)

Wow! Thanks for sharing! I would love to walk thru your garden. The morning glory idea looks great, i may have to steal that tip. Your zinnias are fantastic too, i'm gonna look for that cactus one for next year.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 9:01PM
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trailrunnerbiker

Every bit is so wonderful ! I love that plummy fence !! Did you apply that paint after it was installed ? And where did you get that gorgeous compost ? You know that I come over to Atlanta to see my daughter. perhaps I could get a load of it when I am there with my truck. Your pics are such eye candy :) c

    Bookmark   July 20, 2012 at 10:07AM
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schoolhouse_gw

I think you've done an amazing job considering the temps. Your veggie garden looks great, too.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2012 at 10:36AM
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Calamity_J(z7bc)

Love it all and especially that fence!!!!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2012 at 9:21PM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

I love your purple fence too. But mostly I love your huge slabs in your walkways. What a big job- and the results are fantastic. I especially love the photo of your veggie garden. It's beautiful.
Renee

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 12:34AM
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mandolls(4)

Amazing - looking better and better each time you post.

Question: - Why do you harvest cone flower roots? I have a huge amount of cone flowers, since they are one of the first things I grew from seed few years ago - I over did it and have them everywhere. Are they edible? medicinal?

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 7:39AM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

Thanks everyone! It's been a lot of work after the tornado here. Biggest challenge was the soil, and building the entire circle garden a few inches to a few feet above grade to improve drainage during our flooding rains. Thank goodness I had help with that from a few permiculture folks. You'll notice a lot of annuals right now. Slowly there will be more perennials and trees growing to help with a bit of shade for the circle garden, but over all, I'm really pleased with it. It looks as I envisioned it should at this stage of the game!
The purple fence was installed and then painted afterwards. We were pleased to find someone to install a good fence at a really great price and could afford to hire someone to paint the fence. Eventually, when the two yards become one it will end up being the same purple as the other fence, but I really do love this plummy color. Caveat: it shows every drop of bird dirt :)
I harvest cone flower roots for medicine.
I took that photo of the veggie garden at exactly the right time! Now those hyacinth beans on the entrance arch are encrusted with kudzu bugs (all my beans are), three tomatoes had to be pulled because of too much water, the cucumbers are all yellowing (and need to be fertilized!!) due to water...luckily no cuke bugs yet though (unheard of here for this time of year). I've been able to make about 22 jars of pickles and give away bags and bags of cucumbers! Sadly though, there won't be much of a bean harvest this year: dry or frozen.
I don't spend much time in the garden right now, it's doing fine on it's own for the most part. I spend all my extra time canning and drying this time of the year!!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 2:20PM
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gottagarden(z5 western NY)

Love how your purple trim brings out all the purple flowers. That is luscious dark red hibiscus, and you have a fabulous herb collection!

    Bookmark   August 1, 2012 at 8:13PM
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