The Big Plant 2023!

It’s that time of year again, folks – it’s the Big Plant!

It’s been a crazy busy couple of weeks for us here, getting summer plants in the ground and on the porch, doing markets, and getting baking classes rolling, all while also doing our everyday work and life around the homestead and beyond. Today, I have our plantings and plans for our gardens through the summer, as well as happenings on the homestead.


Alas, we lost our first chicken a couple of weeks ago. While it was certainly a win that it took so long for it to happen, it was rather sad. Tikka up and disappeared without a trace, and we assume she was taken by a predator (or is currently traveling the globe). Pour one out for one of our best layers and prettiest hens this weekend.

Otherwise, the other chickens are doing well – they were spooked for a few days after Tikka’s disappearance (she was also Alpha Hen, so that made the hierarchy a little wonky) and didn’t lay many eggs, but they seem to be back in form, enjoying the tall, tall grass in their chicken tractor.

Vegetable Beds

We’re working with our large beds again this year, but rotating crops and adding beans wherever we can:

Plot 1: Cucumbers, melons, bush beans

Plot 2: Okra, radishes, dill

Plot 3: Three Sisters (corn, pole beans, winter squash)

Plot 4: Tomatoes, basil

Plot 5: Summer squash, sunflowers, various fun flowers

Plot 6: Peppers, Thai basil, flowers (nasturtium, etc.)

Plot 7: Melons and whatever else I feel like, GOSH

Here’s hoping we get tons of produce that we don’t know what to do with! (Just kidding – we know what to do with excess produce. That’s what a pressure canner is for >:)

Front Bed

The front “cold bed” has been hit or miss with plantings. I’ve had zero success with carrots and parsnips, mostly because I didn’t want to till up the soil, but now I know I should if I want them. However, our mustard seeds from last year’s fall planting came back and gave us a bunch of mustard greens, yay!

Radishes are doing all right after successive plantings and no more hard freezes. Snow peas are going slowly and might not make it to hot summer. I also planted some parsley and dill for fun, which is having mixed results.

Blackberries, Strawberries, and Other Perennials

Our blackberries are doing excellently again this year, including the canes we moved in the winter. Woohoo!

I already mentioned that we’re getting strawberries, rhubarb, and asparagus this year in my last homestead update, and that peaches will be sparse, alas.

But, one of our most exciting perennials is back with a vengeance in the front yard…


God willing, we’ll be inundated with maypops this year. (Remember maypops?) We let these suckers go to seed at the end of last year and threw seeds all over the place, and they are now…all over the place! (Mostly concentrated where they were last year, but in bigger numbers.)

Here’s hoping for loads of maypop jelly and mead. Epaaaaa!

Porch Plants

As usual, I planted lots of herbs on the porch, as well as lettuces, flowers, a cherry tomato, and an Asian eggplant that an animal has already seen to digging up. Sigh. The universe does not want us to have eggplant, apparently (except that I repotted it and it seems to be doing fine, so).

Toddler Homesteader is a big fan of the strawberry mint and chives, and chews on leaves whenever we’re having our coffeetime. It’s as adorable as it sounds.

That’s about it for the homestead update around here. Until next time, friends, happy summer gardening!

One comment

  1. Love seeing all of your lovely green plans starting to paint your canvas over there. While it’s nice to take a summer off and live vicariously through fellow homesteaders, there is also a little bit of sadness to that. Not sure how to say it… like missing a huge opportunity to do the most entirely natural and family-supportive thing one can possibly do.

    Trying to make a better plan to use some of the jars (shelves) and zip-lock bags (freezer) preserves from last year… so at least that’s something!

    Hope you finally get yourself some carrots… we find they do really well in our usually difficult to manage clay soil, so long as we start them with ateast a couple inches of more loamy topsoil on top.


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