Planting is continuing every day as we have so much ground that is garden now. Our wonderful apprentice, Ashley, has been planting our overflow peppers in the North garden and mulching crops ranging from beans through cabbage, corn, and squash. With this drought, the mulch sure helps retain moisture from watering or infrequent rains.

Will and Ashley have been mulching the Sand garden’s cabbages, peppers, tomatoes, and squash.

Yesterday I planted all of the sweet peppers in our hoop house and Ashley followed, mulching them in right away. Next is the other hoop house where I’ll be planting our hot peppers. But we also have lots and lots of peppers out in the North garden. What was I thinking? But we do love our peppers, and everyone is thrilled with my Vaquero Relish so we want to harvest lots.

Despite the drought, our beans are coming up nicely.

Today, I’m planting the extra tomatoes into a trench Will made next to the potatoes, in the Wolf garden. With the rain we got last evening, the soil is nice, and the tomatoes are setting in very nicely. I’m waiting for evening to go out and work as the doxycycline the doctor prescribed for my Lyme’s has also made me very sensitive to the sun. I wear long sleeves and a hat, but the backs of my hands are sunburned, despite sunblock and my chubby cheeks are also glowing. Oh well, a small price to pay for getting to feel better.

Today Will is busy building more tomato cages for our huge crop.

Will’s busy down in the Sand garden, making many more tomato cages out of concrete re-enforcing wire. We grew so many tomato plants, we ran out of cages, so he has to make something like 43 more! But those cages, along with a steel T-post are the best for supporting our very tall tomatoes and keeping them safe from blow-down in the wind. — Jackie


  1. I enjoy hearing from you in your blog, little bits of your life. Your place is beautiful with life, and I pray for ya’ll. My husband has been on an antibiotic and it was harsh on his skin in direct sunlight all day, six days a week constructing a house. Now he’s wearing long sleeves, which are hard to find in stores during this off-season. We’re having a string of very hot weather in the hundreds and it’s pretty dry here; that’s normal. God bless you, Jackie and Will.

    • Thank you for your prayers!! I try to wear a hat and long sleeves while on doxycycline but a few years ago, I burned right through the shirt! And I NEVER get sunburn. But, hey, the antibiotic sure does it’s thing so no complaints. (Well, not too many…)

  2. Since my husband was diagnosed rently w Pancreatic Cancer my large garden was scaled way down this year. I am Loving seeing yours take shape. I have been using yiu Growibg and Canning Your Own Food book a lot & my husband is enjoying seeing the shelves fill up. Thank you for such a great book. The Canning Recipes are Awesome.

  3. Jackie,
    I was always told and have read that tomatoes and potatoes should never be planted next to each other or in the same garden area for at least 2 years to avoid disease. What do you do to avoid this problem?

    • There are a lot of “nevers” said. Like NEVER raise turkeys with chickens as they’ll pass blackhead to them; we have for over 50 years. We’ve also raised tomatoes and potatoes next to each other for years with no trouble. But if you DO have disease, it’s best to keep all nightshade plants separate, including tomatoes, potatoes and peppers.

    • Thanks Tammy. We’re excited as the corn and beans are starting to come up. Now if we just get some serious rain….

  4. You folks just amaze me with the amount of produce you grow. We are in an extreme drought here in Utah, so I have mulched everything and so far things are doing okay.

  5. Hi Jackie,
    How does Will fasten the ends of wire cages together? I would like to use this method on tomatoes to keep them from falling over.

    • With bolt cutters, he cuts the concrete re-enforcing wire off next to a square. Then we fold the piece of wire around the opposite side in a few places, making the cylinder. Tip: Don’t fold tightly or repeat the fold or the wire will snap off.

  6. Be careful with the sun warning it is possible to get very I’ll even sun poisoning with that medicine my husband did and was very ill and in a lot of pain

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