Homegrown apricots

Summer time treats, homegrown apricots

“June Gloom” has lifted and summer is nigh.  The garden is growing right before my very eyes.  There are loads of strawberries, blueberries (over 6 lbs in the fridge – that’s a whole lotta little berries!) and apricots (was a good year!) to “deal” with.   Certainly a “good” problem to have.   With rising food prices,  homesteads of every shape and size are gearing up for the summer onslaught!

Baskets of beans, the first cukes, peppers and summer squashes were harvested this week and tomatoes are not far behind – can hardly wait!   Basil beds are filling in and the mints too!  Been waiting months to whip up some fresh tabouli and summer pasta.  Man, I am getting hungry!  That reminds me, I really should get back one of our reader’s favorite  “Weekly Meal Wrap Ups.”  Scribble that down on my “to do list.”

My camera can barely keep up with all the wonderful sights that make up our little homestead here in the city.   I can’t help but be filled with simple content and feel how blessed we are to have such bounty and beauty surround us.

I’m going to borrow from a line from one of my favorite blogger (love your recent pos,t btw!)

“And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content.” 1 Timothy 6:8

Care to share your summer blessings?

Happy summer ya’ll!

Hard working bees bring home the honey

Baby summer squash

Bush beans

Green beans in the garden!

Chicken & duck house nestled among the flowers, grapes and tomatoes

Summer garden

Borage and bees

Jumbo Jalapenos

Another sowing of summer crops

Red roses

Planting lettuce soil blocks

Growing on up!


Towering pole beans top their trellis

What's up?

Calendulas ... always make me smile

Apple and peaches, oh my!

Black eyed Susan

Nap time... zzzzzzz


  1. Tim says:

    We’re thankful for a fresh indoor-grown lettuce (too hot for outside lettuce), knowing where our milk comes from (our sweet goat, Hallie), and squash, zucchini, and various beans that came from our grandparents’ garden. The seeds germinated after more than a decade in the freezer! God is so good to connect us to the past as we prepare for the future. We’re also thankful for no GMO’s here! Just good food from right in the yard. It’s amazing for a lifelong suburbanite like me.

    “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.”

    • Anais says:

      @Tim: Amen.

  2. Joy Giles says:

    Your garden looks great. So jealous. Mine is looking poorly due to our “extreme” drought. I am looking forward to the Fall garden. They all seem to do better here.

    How do you get your plants looking so healthy? Other than compost, do you all use any type of organic fertilizer? If so, what kind? How about dealing with bugs, other than letting them have their share? Do you have a previous post on growing apples on the horizontal wiring?
    I can’t remember what the method is called.

    • Anais says:

      @Joy Giles: No rain there in Texas yet. Poor things! We’ll keep praying for you guys. I think it’s the animal manure from our critters. Having animals really helped us improve our soil. Bugs, well that’s a different story. We keep a close eye on thing and we try our best to nip infestations as fast as possible. Either by getting rid of the “sick” plants or spraying with neem, pepper and or garlic spray.

      Yes, that’s called “espalier”

  3. Jeni Vandall says:

    What a blessing your homestead is to you guys and to your readers. Our garden is taking off a bit slow here in Utah. We have had cold very wet weather until about 2 weeks ago…now things are blooming nicely.
    I think getting back to being in sync with the land and animals has brought so much peace to mind for myself. So thank you again (I say this all the time) for being such an inspiration and teaching me new things all the time.

    • Anais says:

      @Jeni Vandall: I agree, wouldn’t change this life for anything! Happy summer and growing! 🙂

  4. V Schoenwald says:

    My garden, though very tiny is finally getting a foot hold and growing and is looking fabulous despite the wet, cold, winter, summer weather we had, very erratic, but its now going full tilt.
    I look forward to farmer’s market this Saturday, as I hope to see some things that I don’t grow myself and get some supplies, like honey. I am hoping to see fresh beans also.
    If you submit your faith to the Lord, he will provide, sometimes though, you have to help the faith along alittle!
    Have a wonderful harvest and preservation this season.

    • Anais says:

      @V Schoenwald: Seems like summer has started off wet and cool in most parts. Even here in So Cal. We had drizzle and overcast weather all last week. Not only is out little plot growing our daily bread but a bit of faith too – well put! Amen to that. Happy summer! 🙂

  5. Deanna says:

    I love Mia’s blog as well! So inspiring!

    Our bush beans are looking good, and surprisingly our lettuce is still going strong here in PA! We are getting some sugar snap peas now, and the tomatoes are coming on well.

    I enjoy seeing what you are up to there in California and with your garden!

    Lovely photos!

    • Anais says:

      @Deanna: Thanks, glad you enjoyed Mia’s blog. I so wanna move in with her family. Hey, Mia, can you adopt me! LOL 🙂 Happy summer and happy growing!

  6. Katrina says:

    Love your pictures. Can’t wait for my stuff to start growing more. We don’t have such a nice growing season here in southern Alberta. But I am always thankful for what we can grow.

    • Anais says:

      @Katrina: Thank you! Glad you enjoyed a little glimpse into our little eden. Happy summer!

  7. Beverly says:

    I’ve started stalking your blog recently, as I dream bigger dreams about my little garden. These photos are beautiful, especially the summer squash one!
    Mint grows in my garden like a weed, and I’m beginning to regret having planted it. Tell me, aside from Tabouli, what do you do with that mint? I can only drink so much mint tea and mojitos…

    • Anais says:

      @Beverly: LOL. OK, how about Mint jelly? Mint ice cream? pssst, readers do ya’ll have any recipe suggestions for too many mints!

      • Bev says:


        How about these mint recipes (from

        1.Mint (and Rosemary) Pesto.
        2.Mint Face Packs. Make a paste (i.e. purée) with a handful of mint leaves, half a tub of Natural Yoghurt and a quarter of a cucumber, and apply to the skin for 15 minutes – it will sooth and purify.
        3.Traditional English Mint Sauce (for use as an accompaniment to meat). Mix a handful of chopped mint leaves with a tbsp of sugar,4 tbsps of White Wine vinegar, and a little salt and pepper to taste.
        4.Indian Style Mint Sauce. The Indian styled mint sauce is called Raita – substitute the vinegar above for 250ml Natural Yoghurt and mix well.
        5.Mint Potatoes. Chop up and toss with fresh boiled or roast potatoes.
        6. Garnish. Take a simple desert, sprinkle liberally with icing sugar and decorate with a couple of sprigs of mint.

        Hope this helps with the mint plethora!! From Bev, in New Zealand 🙂

        • Anais says:

          @Bev: Oooooh, yummy. Great stuff, thanks for sharing. Or should I say “good on you” 🙂

        • Beverly says:

          @Bev, Ooh, thanks for the ideas! I have a little rosemary in my garden, I’d never have thought of combining it with mint! Here goes!

        • Bev says:

          @Bev, Hi Anais, they do sound yummy, don’t they. Hehe, I had to laugh “good on you” – classic!!! Hope you’re enjoying the sunshine, it’s cold and rainy here at the moment (as it’s our winter) 🙁

          • Anais says:

            @Bev: Thank you, it’s absolutely gorgeous weather here – not too hot (yet) We were in NZ last June… brrrrr!

    • Bev says:

      @Beverly, You’re welcome Beverly. Have fun with your experiments. BTW, I’ve also found a recipe for mint facial toner, amongst other things.

  8. Chris says:

    As we transition to another residence, I am making new growing beds. I am ever so grateful and thankful that I have learned how to “grow soil”/compost. I am thankful that this year I have access to finished pasture-fed cow manure from a biodynamic/organic farm to help build my new beds. I am thankful that the Good Lord put this farming family in my life this growing season to supplement what I am growing, giving me a basis for comparison for what I am growing in my CC beds (limited) to what they are producing on this farm and all of the abundance of harvest between us. I am grateful to see the impact of varied animal manure on the soil and the resulting harvest.

    • Anais says:

      @Chris: That’s great news. What a blessings to have such a contact. Have a wonderful and productive summer. Happy growing!

  9. Angie says:

    We are growing tomatoes, lots of tomatoes,and the tomato worms are attacking, what do u use to get rid of these lil critters?????HELP!!!

    Thanks! angie

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