For every house is built by someone,

but the builder of all things is God.

Hebrews 3:4

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Our Gardening Journey

Ten years ago, my husband and I
thought it would be a fun to
have a garden.  We were living in
California at the time and had no
experience at all in the art of
gardening.  I was
determined to make it work.
Do you know that we did not
harvest a single vegetable out of
that garden?  Not even a radish!

Our kids working hard for those veggies that never came

Our Children worked very hard
on that garden.


Two years ago, I thought we would
give gardening another try.
My husband was a little hesitant since
our first attempt didn’t go well
at all.
We were still living in California
and my reason for this adventure was
different than before.  I wanted
my kids to learn how to grow their own
food before they left home some
day.  We were so spoiled with our
three wonderful markets around
the corner from our house.  Fresh organic
vegetables were right there at our
finger tips.  When they were sold out,
I’m embarrassed to say we got
a little huffy.
There was something wrong with
this picture don’t you think?
we decided to use raised beds
and we planted all our seeds and
Do you know what happened next?
The Lord decided we were going to
Our real estate agent came over to
Give us our list of “to dos” before
Our house went up for sale.
Do you know what he said to us?
“The garden has to go!”
Out came all the plants and in came
the sod.
Next attempt?
Let’s try it again,
In Tennessee!

 Luke building our raised beds here in Tennessee
last year.

Last year was our first year of
gardening in Tennessee.
The Lord blessed the fruits of our
Beautiful veggies came out of our
garden.  Of course some didn’t make
it, yet others were in abundance.

 We stared with four raised beds
And a plowed 20’ x 20’ plot.
Everything that grew in the raised
Did well, however, the other not so
This year our friends, the Martins, blessed
us with 4 more raised beds.
The challenge was to fill them with
good soil.  Friends of ours
donated lots of goodies to make a
lasagna garden inside those empty boxes.
We are praying the Lord will make
 those veggies grow.

 We cover the ground between and
outside the beds with straw to keep
down the weeds and help us after
the rain with the mud.
 Straw is also used in the beds
for mulch, which keeps the plants
from losing moisture from the hot

 One of our church families was so
Generous to give us tomato, pepper,
cucumber, watermelon, tomatillos,
basil and apple mint plants from their

 Our potato plants are already flowering
and the plants themselves look very healthy and…
no potato beetles!  Yet.
Please Lord, keep the beetles away!

We planted potatoes using the straw
method.  First, we put down newspaper
right on the ground.  Then we placed
the seed potatoes on the newspaper
and covered them with a thick
layer of straw.
Some say this method doesn’t work
well but our soil is very rocky and
clayish so we decided to try
it this year.

Beautiful pepper plants!
We planted sweet, Cayenne, Anaheim
and Jalapeno peppers.
I’ll be canning some wonderful pepper
Jelly with the jalapenos and roasting
and freezing the Anahiems.
As my friend Cathy S. would say, “Yummo!”

We’ll be planting Green Beans and
Okra this week.
Did you know that I’ve never eaten Okra?
Oh dear!
Happy Gardening, my dear friends!
Remember, we plant and water, but it’s
the Lord that makes it grow.


Anonymous said...

Looks Great. We did lasagna gardening last year and things grew like crazy.


Nadine said...

Thank you for the little tour of your veggie garden...may God bless your family with an abudance of fresh veggies this year!!!


mrshester said...

Lovely!! I have a feeling you are going to enjoy the okra, it is one of my favorite veggies!

Lady Farmer said...

Do not get discouraged when your crops fail. I have planted a garden more years than I can count and many time don't get anything from it either. But the deer are fat and happy! I am learning even if I am not harvesting! But, I think I have the deer problem solved, finally! Now, if I could only figure out how to NOT WEED! :~D
Enjoy the experience ~ you'll harvest more than produce!

Camille said...

Oh Christa ~ How wonderful!! I am planning a garden with my children too. make me nervous with your story of all the hard work and NO produce!! Oh dear!! We have a raised bed and some very good soil. We always have lots of may be the SUN we will need!! Hopefully we will harvest a carrot or two! ;-)

Isn't it amazing to think of those who have gone before us that depended on the land and what they produced? I think of "Little House on the Prairie" and wonder how they managed to survive year after year! We really are spoiled, aren't we? :)


MyJourneyBack said...

Oh Christa I had saved the info. on where I saw it and lost it. I am so sad. I only have a minute but I will definately be back. I remember back when I stumbled onto it I read Luke's blog. I was impressed. I'll be back to read about the garden. Have a Blessed Evening.
p.s.I will definately write a post giving Luke credit!

Miss Antoinette K. said...

How lovely!!!! We are getting ready to plant some things in our backyard again this year fro our garden! I cannot wait I am so excited and just LOVE to garden! :)

I liked the photos of the Smith ladies and Luke when they were little, very sweet!

May the Lord bless your garden abundantly this year Mrs. Smith!

Blessings in Christ,

Miss Antoinette

Mountain Home Quilts said...

Boy, I sure hope the straw method works for potatoes because I am trying it too this year- i just put it all in a week ago!

Emma and Heidi said...

We are growning our own vegtables and our childern look really busy in our graden.

Cora said...

Wow....I know how you feel. We started our first ever raised beds last year. We used horse manure with the soil and produced lots of veggies. So we expanded our garden this year with more boxes, but we had to fence it off to keep the deer and rabbits out. We actually planted our potatoes in the horse manure because it contained a lot of straw and hay and we made lots of easy to dig "taters". I love it.
Thanks for your warm and friendly visit with me today...please come by again. Good luck with the garden. Blessings!! :)
You'll like the okra I'm sure!!