Updated: Oct 13, 2021
Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through a link, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you. Summer is certainly here, it's hot, wet and humid. Thanks to our subtropic temps are garden is wild. That's nothing of concern as it's also a time where only a select plants of veggies, fruits and herbs are producing. Which means it's a beautiful time to either organize and clean up your pots and beds or if you still haven't take the plunge, maybe try planning for the fall season ahead!
You can read our intro blog post on how we got started. If the idea of gardening seems daunting or brings back painful memories of a brown thumb, I promise with a few tips here and there and trusting a slow progression of acquiring plants, you'll be more confident and have much success: CLICK HERE FOR INTRO BLOG POST ( I also list off my favorite IG accounts for helpful tips and inspo!)
Some are familiar with a b2b vlog highlights of DIY parties and Halloween trailers, but we've been slowly recording the progress of our garden this past spring/summer and finally we're ready to share with you how things are going. We've also learned quite a bit as we've gotten more serious with our home garden. I totally take on my Virgo traits when it comes to planning and organizing my passion projects, but i do allow my Libra moon to help me just " go with the flow" sometimes and not get easily discouraged. I'm grateful for the positive feedback and followers who have also started their garden journey from watching our highlight feeds ( CLICK HERE, HERE & HERE ) and have transformed their yards and balconies. We only felt it was right to dive deeper into this world of gardening on our YOUTUBE CHANNEL. I'd love for you to take at look and get inspired by our first Garden Vlog of our latest series on our channel below. When you're done, come back as I have detailed tips, helpful links and more below to better help you achieve a successful garden.
These days I'm making the most of my spaces in my yard and planning out my seasons accordingly. No more fighting it, what's right for each season is for a reason. Just like life, we are like plants and we have thriving moments and not so thriving moments. We have to respect that, it's part of our nature.
So with planning comes understanding which times are best for sowing and planting seedlings or bought starter plants. To figure out that knowledge I have noted all the things from Gardenate.com . This site is headache free. Just strait to the facts. You simply put your country location/zone: USA Zone10b and it siphons all the information. You can look up by month or by plant!
What I did first was go through each month and noted by season in my garden planner when to sow seeds of my favored crop and when to plant crops. This is important because if you are someone who doesn't want to sow seeds, then you can just focus on when to plant in ground. If you plan to buy plugs and starter plants, try and visit your local nurseries and farms first.
I really enjoy going to Little River Coop whenever I need a unique plant, like Sissoo Spinach or African Blue Basil (does great in the summer time). I also go there for seeds, lychee snacks and their donation based cut garden. You can tour with me via our latest vlog.
After you write out all of your preferred crops and have it on one sheet, then break it down by Veggies, Fruit and Herbs on separate pages. You may wonder, why not just do that from the start, but it's great to see what is coming up each season as whole. Then to not get overwhelmed, revert to each crop section for easy viewing.
I then went to my notes section and wrote out all the compatibility plants that connect with the plants I either currently grow or plan on growing. This makes it easier to plan your garden beds or pots and have better success in your yields and healthier soil! You want to plant things that will help each other better. I learned the hard way, my cucumber was weekend when I took my potted beefy tomatoes and stuck them in the bed with my cucumbers. NOT OK! it sucked the nutrients right out of the soil, too much competition. lol Oh well! it was towards the end of my cucumber season anyway, so I don't feel too bad.
Cucumber scraps were soon used for compost! Will talk about that another time on the blog. However if you are interested in composting for creating beautiful black gold soil and sustainable habits, check out the SUBPOD at home composting system.
Using my grid sheets, I map out the placement of my beds with the use of colors and names of each plant in the legend. Good to go!
There are plenty of Etsy printables planners to choose from when it comes to garden planning. I've created a practical and sweet printable here to get you started, however I'll be adding a more in depth one on our etsy shop soon.
Some of my favorite planner obsessed shops are (and have been featured on the blog before):
GARDEN TASKS & HACKS
We touched base a little bit in the video about soil, watering, pruning and mulching, but here are the facts and then some that weren't mentioned.
SOIL | I am learning more and more about the importance of soil, composting, vermiculture and all of the nutrients to help boost our crops. I can say you don't have to get as in depth as I am and for the sake of this post, choose a healthy natural (organic if possible) soil. At Home Depot I was able to fill my beds with "Natural Garden Soil" that made sowing seeds and planting plugs easy and successful. BUY HERE
If you want to boost your soil you can get local soil with worm castings; Little River Coop is one that provides to us locals BUY HERE, or if you have a Subpod use that soil Or on Amazon you can find our preferred worm casting enriched soil BUY HERE.
Lastly every few weeks we sprinkle in some feedings using the Espoma Tone which has different versions for veggies, citrus fruits and berries BUY HERE.
WATERING| Water is either fun for you or stresses you out because your schedule has you either away from the house or just you keep forgetting to water the dang plants! In my early days of gardening, I would be on my way out only to realize I needed to zip through the garden and soak these plants. Then if I forgot, I had my husband do it and he already has crazy hours to begin with, so he quickly resolved that situation with an irrigation system ( get both a drip and sprinkler head). You don't have to have a crazy fancy system to achieve maximum water capabilities, just need a water source and an hour or two to instal. I personally recommend one with a timer, so you can be on your way with day to day tasks. this also made it easier for when the hotter months came and we needed double the watering at different times. Check out this tutorial by BLACK GUMBO on an affordable irrigation system BUY HERE.
PRUNING |The best way to increase fruitfulness of your plants, prevent certain plant from maturing (flowering) so they last longer and it keeps them healthy! If you can spend 5 minutes a day or 10-15 minutes every few, this will help your garden thrive and prevent pest from damaging your crops.
MULCHING |I wish I had done this earlier on. Seriously mulch as soon as you can, don't be lazy like me. As wonderful as organic soil it is, pests and weeds like it too. So mulching is a great way to prevent that and lesson your labor load. As it breaks down over time, it becomes instant compost and is great nutrients for your beds and pots. It's also nice to mix it in with your soil as it's helpful in drainage and potential water log (which can cause rot). There are several options for mulch; the classic wood type, shredded leaves from your own garden or straw. Kevin Espiritu has his own shop and talks about mulch in his podcast "EPIC GARDENING", he too is in zone10b but in SoCal. Still his podcasts episodes are sweet and toot he point when you want to learn about a specific subject. He has a blog too if you prefer reading his blog, CLICK HERE.
ORGANIC PEST CONTROL | I use NEEM OIL and BT like you wouldn't believe. I alternate with them. Two weeks strait of Neem then one week of BT. With the humid non stop rain we are having, these two products save the day from unwanted pests, without hurting the beneficial bees, red wrigglers, lady bugs and more.
Neem Oil helps stop aphids, spider mites and more from attacking your plants and also prevents them from being able to reproduce and lay their eggs near! Also I've noticed its helped with powdery mildew. BUY HERE
BT (Bacillus Thuringiensis) is great for hornworms, tomato worms and other caterpillars that will ravage your plants! It's really devasting when you wake-up and overnight see half the leave on your sunflowers all chewed up if not completely stripped! Grab this to help STOP ASAP with a spritz here and there to prevent more growing or laying eggs!!! BUY HERE
Marigold Plants, did you notice in the video the amount of marigolds there are? It's Some were planted and others sprouted on their own. They are edible but also keep unwanted pests away while also being a great pollinators in your garden! Seriously these golden blooms are a beautiful way to keep mosquitos, nematodes and cabbage worms away! So go nuts putting this babies in between everything. Everytime a head falls off, the wind takes them and plops them on the floor of your bed. Next thing you know you have a new sprouted marigold. If you want to de-head them as they die, you can. Just take them in bury them in the soil Thats what I do. They easily germinate on their own, just forget about them and wait for a surprise in couple weeks.
Sunflowers, I planted sunflowers for their beauty, pollination benefits and the possibility of trapping pests! My sunflowers are in a different bed away from my crops for a reason. The only reason I have a few growing elsewhere, is for my fall obsessed self hoping to have some pop up in between my future pumpkin patch! lol Really though, they do a good job of distracting unwanted savages in your garden!
On the next episode of our #gardenvlogseries you can expect some fun with Sunflowers! They are the easiest and probably my absolute favorite flower to grow. They bring so much joy to your garden that you'll want to grow them every season! Our first sunflower bloom came on Earth Day and I just about cried. I figured it was a blessing or a hello from up Above, from all our hard work in our little patch of paradise. I know for a fact if you grew them, you too would be swooning over them as well. I'll Stay tuned!
Well fam, gardener, whomever is reading, I hope this vlog and blogpost gave you a little boost in starting your gardening or trying something different with your current one. Whatever it may be, please tag us with #b2bgardens so we can share your beautiful spot on our blog and insta!
Follow us on instagram for daily walks and harvesting, until then catch you on the nest one!
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