Planting the Vegetable Garden of 2013

Last Wednesday night Brad and I got busy planting our vegetable garden for the 2013 season. This will be our third year as vegetable gardeners. We’re basically professionals now seeing as we shopped for plants, tilled the garden, and had everything in the ground within two hours. Booyah.

We started with a little trip to Lowes to pick out the plants. This year we decided to go with Roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, yellow squash, banana peppers, bell peppers, and sweet basil. We tried to grow regular tomatoes for the past two years but we wouldn’t get many and they’d always split open. Wah-wah. We grew Roma and cherry tomatoes last year and they were total bosses so we’re going with them again.

vegetable plant shopping at lowes

When we got home from Lowes Brad started to prepare the soil. He scraped off the rocks that had floated to the surface of the garden bed.

how to prepare a vegetable garden

Then we, I mean Brad, busted out our tiller and got to work. He said the soil was hard and dense. But as you see, it fluffed up quite nicely.

preparing a vegetable garden

After the soil was tilled Brad used the rake to even everything out. We decided not to add compost this year since we added a lot of compost last year and the soil is still really dark.

prepping a vegetable garden

Then came time to put the plants in the ground. We always arrange the plants first, and then plant them. This helps us determine where each plant should go and how much spacing will be needed for certain plants when they reach their full size. We always give the tomato plants the most growing room.

vegetable garden

And speaking of tomato plants, when they’re first planted they’re too small to cage, so we put buckets, with the bottoms cut off, around the tomato plants so the wind doesn’t blow them over. When they get tall enough we put out the tomato cages.

protecting tomato plants

As always, while we were working on the garden, Jack was supervising.

jack in grass

In other lawn and garden news, my seven peony bushes are about the bloom. I’ve dedicated almost the entire south side of our house to my peony collection. They’re my favorite flower if you haven’t caught on quite yet. I also have two rose bushes and two Rose of Sharon on this side of the house. As you can see in the photo below there’s just enough space for another peony bush. I’m hoping to steal a white one from my mother-in-law this fall and stick it in that spot.

peony bushes

I’m super proud of these guys. Look how much they’ve grown since last year.

If you follow me on Instagram be prepared for 500 peony pics once these puppies blossom.

peony bud

I tried talking Brad into letting me get this gorgeous peony plant at Lowes while we were there getting the vegetable plants, but he said no. Well, I said no too because while it was in the clearance section it was still $17.50, and I’m a cheapskate.

pink peony

But seriously, isn’t it beautiful? And I even took that photo with my phone. Maybe I’ll go back today and see if they marked it down anymore, assuming a non-cheapskate didn’t swipe it over the weekend.

I’ll be back throughout the summer to give you vegetable garden updates. You can also follow along on Instagram.

Do you have a vegetable garden?
What do you plant?
Do you have a peony bush hoarding problem?

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  1. I am with you on peonies being my favorite flower. I only have 3 bushes so far but I want more! I had my first flower bloom yesterday (I’m in NJ) and it is a beauty that smells awesome. I even wrote a blog post about visiting a peony farm last week. Can’t wait to see yours as they start to bloom.

  2. Good work on the garden. Now that I’m starting to eat vegetables we should plant something. Eh, that’s what the Farmer’s Market is for.

    Go back for that flower!!!!

  3. I don’t have a peony bush but I absolutely love the flower! My husband just got me a bouquet of them for Mother’s Day and I love how they brighten up the room! If I had been married this time of year I would have had them as my bouquet!

  4. Great idea with the buckets! I will have to reuse my yogurt containers for the same effect!

  5. I’m totally coming to your house to swipe your blooms. SO PRETTY.

    And your garden looks so pretty, too. Such a great idea to add the buckets for the wind. You are a smart one.

    I have planted NOTHING for our veggies, yet. Zip. Zilch. It’s on my list but it just may not happen. Besides my basil, which is going strong in a pot.

  6. Ooh, I love peonies too! I currently have four. One big double white, and a few smaller single-blooming pink. Your veggie garden looks lovely. We can’t plant tomatoes for another couple of weeks. I may not even plant any. We did plant peas last week though.

  7. I love peonies! Grandma used to have a few at her house. Do you know when and how to divide the peonies? I’m told it’s easy to do but I have no ideas how. Thanks!

  8. I just bought a peony bush yesterday! It was $35, which is outrageous and about 5 times more than I’ve ever paid for a plant. It better give me like 500 blooms a year.

  9. Jealous! I wanted a garden so badly this year, but it’s just not gonna happen :p I’ll just have to live vicariously through you and your garden!

  10. Ooh looks like it’s going to be a yummy garden! And I can’t wait to see your 500 peony pics. I have a black thumb, so I will have to live vicariously through you for the pretty flowers! 😉 Hope you had a happy Monday, Chelsea!

    ~Abby =)

  11. Veggie gardens are the best! I love mine though as we are coming into winter here it has gotten pretty slow. Just zucchini, lettuce, basil and a monster of a parsley plant. I am getting braver each year with what I try out! My best tomatoes this year were mini romas. Like a cherry tomato version of the regular roma and boy howdy were they tasty! Such an incredible flavour. Anyhow, I could ramble on and on and on about my veggies. Looking forward to following your progress!

  12. I love peonies too!! Any way you can do a post on how you take clippings and make them into new plants? I’ve planted my (only) peony bush while I”m living at my parents years ago and now I want to move it or take a clipping from it and move it to my new house (if/when we close).

    any tips or advice will be greatly appreciated!


  13. Love your peonies! I planted mine a couple years ago and hope to get more than one bloom this year (I’ve heard they take a while to establish and produce, so I’m being patient!). Enjoy your weekend!

  14. We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community.

    Your web site offered us with valuable info to work on.
    You have done an impressive job and our entire community will be grateful to you.

  15. Impressive work on the garden. There are many people in love with peonies a lot. I am one of them. But, never had thought of having it on my backyard, now I got the idea from you. Thumbs up for the post!

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