I Cannot Get Excited About My Patio Garden This Year

Linda Bittle
Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

I was looking at last year's photos and see that I already had quite a lot of seeds started and ready to get into my pots. I had lots of plans - some of which turned out very well for me. I was excited to play in the dirt and raise some tomatoes and herbs.

This year I just can't muster up much enthusiasm. I did start some cherry tomatoes from the leftover seeds I had.

I'd hoped to be moved into a better location with an actual yard. But that hasn't happened and seems unlikely in the near future.

Many of the plants that I thought I could over-winter under a plastic hoop greenhouse did not survive the extreme low temperatures we had in December. And I'm going to be gone for 10 days over the end of May into June, so I don't want to get things started and then have them die from lack of water while I'm gone.

But my sister has planned a MUCH-NEEDED vacation to the Gulf Coast with her fella, and Mom needs someone to make sure she eats. So. (Also trying to figure out how it's going to work when I take my 2 cats to Mom's, with my sister's Cocker Spaniel. Sadie is probably going to love having the cats visit - I've seen her try to entice rabbits to play. But the cats and my mom will be less than happy. (I have a 76-year-old friend who would go water plants and feed the cats, but that seems too much to ask. And I kind of need my cats there for my own peace of mind.)

What can I plant after June 5th in southern Missouri (zone 5) that will do well in pots? I don't want to give up entirely, but I also don't want to invest time and money into it just yet.

Thanks for letting me vent. I won't say a thing to my sister because she deserves to get away. I won't say a thing to my mom because, well, it wouldn't make anything better. But dang, I wish I could get excited about my little garden.


  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,690 admin

    One consolation of planting late is you will get all the deals at the garden centres. And the plants might be bigger, so an instant garden.

    Sorry, I don't have any suggestions for types of plants as I am in a colder zone than you.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Torey Good point. I have pretty good luck with the "leftover" plants.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,602 admin

    I agree with Torey.

    Just so you know that you aren't alone in the not excited category, and even though the situation is different, I am having A LOT of trouble getting into the excitement of chick hatching this year. You know I normally enjoy my chickens, hatching & all that.

    I have "orders" (more like wish lists) from people, but I don't know if I will be able to fill them, especially with those who want mixed breeds. Normally, that shouldn't have been an issue. I dread calling them & saying not this year or find they already have others. I didn't want to take orders for reasons such as these, yet, here I am.

    My hens are not laying much...or at all. Some are considering molting, which is timely, 🙄 and I have no space...and way too many leftover roosters that aren't selling. My pairs & trio aren't selling either. This would free up some space.

    I have some hatching eggs ordered for 1 week from now, eggs hatching in one week, and no place to put the ones I will want to keep.

    And we have a fox scouting out everything. She (most likely) hasn't gotten too close, but she most likely will find a perfect opportunity yet. Fox moms with young kits are persistent and extra sly.

    I have been feeling all this heavily over the past week, but more so in the past 2 days.

    I hope you can find what works for you in pots. I don't have any luck with outdoor potted things. They die of thirst. 😑 I wish I could be of more help.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LaurieLovesLearning It's always something, isn't it? And it's so sad that the things we look forward to are not nourishing us this year.

    I just this minute figured out that a huge part of this for me is that we survived the last 3 years without giving in and this should have been the year we get to celebrate that and get back to what passes for normal.

    But it looks like the idiots who have been elected or appointed to make decisions are Heck-bent on destroying what's left of the economy. And here we are. Waiting to see what the next crisis is going to be. I think I'm just worn out from the stupidity of it.

    Here's to recovering our joy in the life we choose, and in the meantime, we can commiserate with each other.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,602 admin

    Yes. You are correct. We've been through a few very abnormal years with many things happeing at all levels of life that in a normal world (as we knew it) would not have ended up the way they did. Some things are unfortunately, permanent.

    I have heard that people are more angry/grumpy (I agree) & I do think people more often depressed & unsettled and everything that goes with that. There is a lot of free wielding hate and evil everywhere. What was right is wrong & wrong is right. Its totally inside out & upside down. This started happening within months, nevermind years. The "sandbox" is beyond chaotic.

    News is rarely good, it all focuses more than ever on doom & bad things. Even "alternative" news has little good to say. It gets overwhelming & tiring. It is stressful to constantly assess...true or not true. We were not made to deal with non-stop and intense negative input. That is very unnatural.

    We are in the same boat up here. Waiting on the next bad thing, which is actually constantly happening. Right now its online censorship, step #1. I understand that there are 3 more steps in the works, and it sounds, um...really bad. Its one secret thing after another passing or scandal after scandal that have no consequences for the doer...except if it can affect the citizens, it does.

    I need to find you the video based on Bonhoeffer's "Theory of Stupidity," which he wrote in prison in WW2. It is so true, but I found it entertaining just the same. Maybe it is because it holds so true today as it did back then.

    I read the story of Bonhoeffer's life. It was a 600 😳 page book. He was quite an intellectual thinker & avid writer and had quite an interesting life story. It was one of the largest books I'd ever read, but I'm glad I did read it.

    I took time yesterday & today to just focus on getting the house in order. I know that tidyness in my surroundings does reduce my stress. It was chaotic! It is finally looking a bit better. Outside, however, still needs a lot of cleaning up.

    I plan to take one day off shortly after my intense workdays. Maybe tomorrow or Tuesday. I plan to do "nothing" and try to take in simple pleasures (& no news) & try to focus on the little things that hopefully will perk me up. Maybe I'll watch a few things on Learning Herbs or something.

    We can't just give up. Keep fighting back. Find your rhythm and make it work in your favor. You can find peace & joy in your favorite things again. Hang in there.

    Ah, here is the video I was talking about. I really enjoy animation drawn as a person speaks. This one is done very well. Such a talent!

    Enjoy! 😄

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 1,396 ✭✭✭✭✭

    What about carrots and potatoes? I planted mine in buckets and a rectangular flower container. You could get them going and then leave them out on your balcony or patio so the rain can water them.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LaurieLovesLearning Bonhoeffer was an interesting guy. There was a good biography on Amazon Prime some time ago. I had not seen the video you shared. Thanks for that!

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,946 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I have been having a hard time getting motivated to work in my garden so I decided to start a 100-day challenge in the garden, it makes me do something each day and I am hoping that by taking baby steps I will get back my motivation.

  • shllnzl
    shllnzl Posts: 1,820 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I planted my tower garden late. I am hoping for some success but figured it would be a learning experience either way.

    I am also pursuing my vegetables that survived from last year. Two kohlrabi are still in the house. The rest of the cabbage crops are outside and will probably die when it gets hotter. Three peppers survived from last year (never set fruit, one had a single bloom that didn't develop) and are in an optimized location. All require hand watering.

    So the experiment continues...worm composting in the tower not so healthy....critters are circling....

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @shllnzl I so wish I could have a garden. Ido so much better when I can plant in the ground.

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,991 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle "But it looks like the idiots who have been elected or appointed to make decisions are Heck-bent on destroying what's left of the economy."

    I do my best to ignore politics these days, and focus on my garden and my local community. It's much easier on the emotions. :-)

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Update. And so just now I learn that Mom will be coming to my place for those 10 days because my sister's landlord won't let my 2 cats stay there. It works better for me for a lot of reasons, but Mom is unhappy because she wants to stay at their place but cannot be trusted by herself for long periods.

    It would be so much easier if I still drove, but one-eyed driving is dangerous, and I sold my old vehicle to get back to Missouri.

    I do have some cherry tomato plants started now, and some flowers and herbs are coming back. I may get excited yet.

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,690 admin

    Maybe some already-blooming, instant plants would get you in the "mood". Geraniums are always bright and cheerful. Or maybe a begonia basket if you have shade.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,602 admin

    I agree with @Torey.

    Does your mom like any plants/flowers? Could you get any of her favorites for her to love for those 10 days & possibly back with her? Is that something she can do?

    I hatched some chicks. I'm still not excited, but it's okay. They are nice to have (oh, but stinky already!). I may only have to put one down. I'm waiting a touch longer before I do that.

    I agreed to hatch a few call ducks again this year in my little incubator. Its not fun helping hatch, but lots of fun afterward.

    I now need to clean up the incubator for a second round that I was hoping to set today. I guess tomorrow works. One bonus with that is that one of my jersey giant pairs (that I wondered if they would lay at all this year) finally gave me one egg. That was exciting. You bet it will get set, as well as any laid in the two days after I start it up again.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @LaurieLovesLearning It's hard to say what mom will be willing to try on any given day. Some days she will participate and others she just shrugs her shoulders and walks away.

    @Torey as things start to grow from last year's seeds, it makes me happy. I have marigolds and chamomile coming up in several pots now!

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,186 ✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle I can totally understand! Life happens when other plans are made! I have been ready to plant and then my Mom decided she wanted to move here (647 miles away)---Been trying to get her to do that for 4 years! Moving her stuff her was going to be so expensive, so I found containers to rent--- I pack them and they deliver. Then I fell and sprained both wrists. (I discovered that a 71 year old body doesn't bounce like it did when I was younger! lol) Back to the drawing board, found a company that would load her stuff, so all was working out--every day everything starting to fell better UNTIL I had to drive 4 miles--my left wrist wouldn't cooperate--couldn't turn the steering wheel! Gave up and went to dr. Now in a hard brace and sling, called and cancelled everything and now spending the big bucks for a moving company to move what little bit she has. They will pack, load and drive then unload!

    I can't even think about my garden until I get her here! She told me she has been afraid to move here "since we only eat weeds!" Lol She is 91 and I do want to have a few things she might enjoy in container gardening. We'll see!!

  • Cornelius
    Cornelius Posts: 872 ✭✭✭✭

    I believe you could grow a cucumber or zucchini in a container and get some produce in about 2 months?

    @water2world Have you tried a comfrey salve on your wrists to help speed the healing?

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 2,148 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I understand about not being able to get excited about your garden. I have been having the same problem here. I have had to move my garden beds every year, but in the past I have been able to leave the bath tubs I use for raised beds in the spot I had them in. This year I have to move them as well.

    And the snow hung on forever this year. Some things like my berry plants I can see from 50 feet or so away, but the area leading to them either still has snow or is so muddy and soft I can't even walk on it yet. I need to move all the plants there that my dear hubby "transplanted" last fall while I was at work. He used the front end loader to move them. And where he moved them is a rough, uneven, small ridge along one side of a driveway the neighbors put in to get to their property which they hardly ever are at. Some did not survive, others I'm still waiting to see if they survived.

    Hard to get excited when you know you have to tear it all down and start over again next year. Hopefully by then in a permanent location.

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,186 ✭✭✭✭

    @Cornelius Thanks for your comments---will definitely get some cucumber and zucchini plants

    Yes, thanks, I am using comfrey salve (actually had bought the comfrey kit from the grow network earlier) and also using an arnica liniment that I had made.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I just went out to sit on the patio and found 2 lovely gifts tucked in against my back door! Things are looking up!

    The neighbor couple behind me left 2 tomato plants. They had some plants damaged by the recent wind and had extras after replanting their pots.

    And the other is a cute Valentine cat tunnel!

    The tomatoes are planted in pots near the rhubarb that I'm babysitting until my sister has a place prepared for it. (The Meadow sage she gave me when I moved in 3 years ago is blooming, too!) And I got a Wave petunia a church on Mother's Day!

    Eliza Jane and Jolene are investigating their new plaything.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,946 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle what nice neighbors!

  • marjstratton
    marjstratton Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭✭

    I still have so much to do to get my garden area ready for use. Between this, that, and the next thing, I'm agreeing with most of you who aren't as excited about getting your gardens going as you would like to be or have been in the past.

  • SuperC
    SuperC Posts: 952 ✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle I too was a bit taken aback. Yet, I bought a few packets of sunflower seeds. Then a small bag of organic bush beans because they taste so good freshly picked from their vines. So, I’ve planned to head up north with five 5-gallon pailfuls of fresh compost and five 50-pound bags of garden soil. Up north the soil is all rock and clay. i use no tilling. So we’ll be planting the sunflowers, potatoes, and whatever other seed packets we’re bringing.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    First cherry tomato blooms of the year! Now I'm getting excited!

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,991 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Linda Bittle We are finally in the exciting season when the summer crops start to sprout (beans, cucumbers) and flower (tomatoes)!

  • Marjory Wildcraft
    Marjory Wildcraft Posts: 1,617 admin

    Okra, black eyed peas, basil - basil - basil (I'm thinking pesto) all do well in the summer heat. Missouri definitley has summer heat...

    Glad you got those gifts and things are shifting. Reminds me how important little acts of kindness can be.