Yes! Another garden post! But this time… Bracken’s garden! This year he wanted to have a garden space of his very own and when family and friends visit, it’s the first thing he wants to show them. In the spring, we worked as a family to clear a bed for him and transplant everything that had been there before, like the sage spreading. The bed we chose for him this year also happened to be the first raised bed that Jeff and I built together years ago. Jeff had a pile of cement tubes and we used them to make a border. What was so fun about that spot for Bracken’s garden is that we planted each and every one of those cement tubes around the border with succulents, flowers, and herbs. He loved it.
I wish I had taken pictures before we cleared the bed, and then as we planted it in the spring, so we could see the growth, but I didn’t. I’m planning to do that next year because I’m sure he will be wanting his own garden again. Jeff made him his very own cedar garden sign and Bracken said he wanted colorful flowers on it. (Oh, and before I’m asked: we do make custom garden signs.) Bracken chose what he wanted to plant this year (corn, strawberries, peas, and mostly lots of flowers) and I so enjoyed those spring days when we carved out a little time to all work on his garden as a family. He wanted to have a garden space of his own, but he also wanted help clearing it and planting it and we were happy to help.
Later in the season, Jeff and Bracken were the ones who took care of his garden more. Bracken would come in from the garden and bring me some of his harvests while I was working in the kitchen. He was so proud when he brought me peas, parsley, strawberries, and chives from his very own garden. He planted a pot full of beans and squash and we couldn’t believe how well they’ve been growing in such a small space. Jeff and Bracken also carved what looks like a miniature river that winds throughout the bed. They used sand and rocks to guide the water where they wanted and when the hose ran on it, the winding river would bring water throughout the bed. It looked like a little gnome river to me. And who doesn’t want a gnome river in their garden?
Mostly Bracken wanted flowers in his garden this year, telling us he wanted to bring in lots of butterflies. I do believe I saw more butterflies in our garden this year than ever before. We planted pygmy sunflowers (along with tall varieties), but Jeff fertilized them so much that they grew taller than it said on the seed packet. There is a bundle of dried flowers that Jeff and Bracken harvested in his garden, so the flowers he grew this year can be enjoyed for much longer. We bought seeds in the spring for the garden and then we regularly traded eggs for plants with a man who had a nursery. We came home nearly every week with more flowers to plant and somehow always found another space to squeeze more in.
Bracken has participated in the garden since he was old enough to hold the seeds in his little hands. He’s had areas he’s planted in the garden before, but this year was the first year he had a whole plant bed that was his. He really takes after his dad, seeming to have a natural green thumb just like Jeff does. I love gardening and I enjoy digging my hands in the earth, I find my time out there so therapeutic, but I wouldn’t say I have a green thumb. The two of them especially need their garden time and gardening is something they’ve really enjoyed doing together. (I need to take some pictures of the two of them out there.) Bracken has learned so much this year about gardening and he is proud to tell people that his dad had his first garden when he was eight, but he had his first garden when he was five.