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All Things Garden,  Flowers,  Wildlife

Homestead Update: Garden Tour Summer 2022 (Video and Photos)

Geesh, time flies! I can’t believe that July 1st rang in the one-year anniversary of us moving to the new homestead. Then, we officially “revealed” our new garden space here almost 4 months ago now, and SO much has changed in that time. Most of our spring crops have come and gone, and the garden is booming and blooming with summer vibes now. So, come along to see what’s new and growing! 

This post features an updated garden tour video that shows the current state of the garden, snippets from spring, exciting wildlife developments (like, we have dozens of wild baby California quail here right now!!!), and highlights some of our favorite flowers and veggie varieties. 

Other than the video, I’m basically using this post as a photo-dump for all my favorite garden photos from the last few months. It’s a great way for us to journal and document our first growing season in the new garden, and I hope you enjoy looking through them too!



I had to start with a few of my favorite images first (I mean, we can’t wait until the end of the post for baby quail and sunflowers, now can we?!) and then added the rest of the photos in somewhat chronological order.


Summer garden vibes with onions, tomatoes, pole beans, sunflowers and more.
Peeking through the statice border to a jungle of artichokes, cosmos and sunflowers. The red and yellow “Evening Colors” sunflower is my favorite this year!
The youngest group of baby quail (we have three different age groups right now!), just over a week old here.
The “middles” (middle-aged of three baby quail groups), all ten still trying to huddle under Mama – but getting too big, fast!
We celebrated Aaron’s 40th birthday in June, and got all cleaned up (a rarity!) for the occasion.
Male quail watching over his covey from the fence.
The garden in spring. Our snap peas did wonderful this year!
The lettuce also kicked butt, despite our few extreme temperature swings (we had to bust out the shade cloth AND frost cloth a few times this spring).
A very springy harvest of snap peas, radishes, swiss chard, kohlrabi, and a few blueberries.
First carrots of spring!
We had quite a few Gopher snake friends appear in April-May, and this big fella (or lady) was at least 5 or 6 feet long!
Me, Bear, and our newest fruit tree additions to the orchard: a Santa Rosa plum, Santa Barbara peach, and Double Delight nectarine.
Late spring in the garden. Love those trailing nasturtiums! They faded out pretty quickly though.
Newest pollinator border filling in nicely.
Seashell Cosmos = divine.
Lavender harvest
The largest kohlrabi we’ve ever grown, and they were still tender inside!
Late spring harvest
Caught these happy Lesser Goldfinches in action! They LOVE the fountain.
The hummingbirds enjoy the fountain too, and the succulent flowers around it!
Late spring evening in the garden
Calendula harvest. Learn more about growing, drying, and using calendula for salves, oils and tea here
All bundled up
Most of our cauliflower bolted or separated easily this spring (again, the heat waves..) but this Lavender variety performed well!
Our 10 year old agave blooming in the background, with lots of leafy greens in the beds.
Once the agave finally flowered (it took many months) the hummingbirds enjoyed drinking from it!
We re-mulched the orchard in May. It was SO needed!
Fresh mulch makes a world of difference!
After mulching, we also added a new pathway between the garden and orchard area.
Badger and Bear all cuddled up on a chilly spring evening.
Moving into summer
Gorgeous Salmon Rose zinnia
Beautiful foggy summer evening in the garden. I spy two Waldos
Double Teddy sunflower
Boro beets, our new favorite variety – and best we’ve ever grown!
Summer Solstice harvest
Babies! What you can’t see is the other 6+ babies huddled under mom.
The birds have been loving all the sunflower seed snacks
The Scrub Jays especially.
Swiss chard jungle!
A man and his chard harvest
We ate quite a few artichokes already, so we’re going to let these ones bloom for the bees – and for us to enjoy their beauty!
Biggest bumblebee I’ve ever seen, taking a nap in a Seashell Cosmos.
Yes, I’m obsessed with our quail friends.
The youngest quail group in our orchard with Mama.
NorthEaster Romano pole beans. SO long, delicious, crisp and tender!
Badger and our watermelon bed. Believe it or not, this is our first time growing watermelon!
We’ve been really happy with the new tomato trellis system we created this year! You can learn more about it in this post.
Goldfinch enjoying Bachelor’s Buttons seeds.
Another summery harvest.
Happy bees. Check out those pollen pantaloons!
At the far end of the garden we have potatoes and cannabis in grow bags.
Eggplant doing better than ever in our new (slightly warmer) climate! These are “little finger” eggplant, about ready for harvest at this size.
I love how the coral zinnias pop against the fog.
Love birds.


Wow, are you still here? Lol! That’s all I have for our summer garden update. Please let us know if you have any questions in the comments below, or just pop in to say hello! We appreciate you tuning in today.



30 Comments

  • Gulhan

    I love following your garden in IG! I learn so much. Everything looks gorgeous. 😍

    What is that orange mounding flower? I have been trying to catch a close up in your stories for months but still couldn’t identify it 😅

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Hi Gulhan, thank you so much for following along and I think the mounding flower you are referring to is Tangerine Gem marigold. Hope that helps and thanks for checking out the video/photo tour!

  • Mariangela

    Loved all the photos and inspiration! Wondering what seedlings you are starting for your fall? Can we get a sneak peak at your plans??

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Haha, thanks for your interest Mariangela! We actually don’t have any plans just yet on paper, but in August at some point, we will be starting a variety of leafy greens, Brussels sprouts, and various other brassicas but all the varieties are still to be determined. We will keep you updated though as we get closer to that time and thanks for following along.

  • Brandi

    I am blown away by the sheer beauty and productivity of your garden! It’s a dream! 😍 I’m in zone 7B, and we’re in the 100s regularly by July so everything I’ve been growing is dying out. 😩 It’s also very dry. Can you tell me your average spring and summer temps?? Living near a coast, do you get a lot of rain? I have used your blog, newsletter, and media for a lot of inspiration this year. Thank you so much for sharing what you do!

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Hi Brandi, thanks for following along and glad to hear you find inspiration in what we do. We are on the Central Coast of California and the climate is pretty temperate. Our average spring/summer temperature lows are in the high 40’s F to low 50’s F and average highs in the low to high 70’s. We get most of our yearly rain over a few months in the winter and our summers can be quite foggy. Depending on what plants are dying out on you, since your weather is quite hot, your summer garden plants should now be mostly tomatoes, squash, eggplant, peppers and other plants that enjoy the sun and heat. You likely can’t grow chard, kale, beets, carrots, or those types of crops right now, but it should be possible during the fall and spring months. Hope that helps and have fun in the garden!

  • Gina

    Greetings Aaron and Deanna! What the two of you have accomplished on your property in the past year is miraculous! I’ve been along for the ride, but seeing these photos with everything fully developed just blows my mind.🤯. I count myself fortunate to have come across your blog a few years ago and look forward to what the future holds. Best regards!

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Thank you so much for the kind words Gina and for following along through the years, we very much appreciate your support!

  • Tricia Berkow

    Your garden is such an inspiration! We live up in Chico so it’s much hotter here. Our garden right now is dominated with tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant. We also have the zucchini, cucumbers, potatoes, and watermelon. We are having to put some shade netting to protect the tomatoes from sun-scald.

    My question is, with the flowers, such as zinnias, marigolds, bachelors button etc…do you direct seed? Which veggies do you start seeds indoors?

    Thanks again! Love your videos and blogs!

    Tricia

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Hi Tricia, I grew up in Chico and that is where Deanna and I met so we are very familiar with the summertime heat! We start most of our veggies and flowers indoors on a heat mat and grow them under lights until we harden them off and transplant into our garden. Beans, peas, root veggies including radishes, beets, carrots all are direct sown outside in the raised beds. In Chico, it is likely too hot for most tender seedlings right now so if you want to add something into the garden mid summer, it is best to start them indoors and transplant them out once they are a more established plant. Check out our article: Start Seeds Indoors or Direct Sow (Plant) Seeds Outdoors? for more in depth information on the process. Hope that helps and have fun growing!

  • Anna

    WOW!!! Amazing!!! Thanks for the photo dump! Will watch the tour later today when it’s too hot to be out in our own garden! Those zinnias are awesome!!!

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Thank you so much Anna and we are loving some of the zinnia varieties! Good luck in the heat and enjoy the outdoors when you can.

  • Haley

    You guys are such an inspiration! Love everything you guys educate us on, it’s really taught me and my partner so much. Your Instagram and website has shown us how to improve our existing garden, and livestock ( while listening to stickfigure 🥰). I can always reference to your work. Much appreciation from Ohio!

  • Mindy

    Wow, the photos were simply gorgeous! It gave me such pleasure seeing your stunning garden and wildlife (and the both of you and your kitties!). Thank you so much for the inspiration and enjoyment.

  • Maisy

    So so so beautiful! (I had pretty much seen everything in your Instagram stories already, but it’s just so nice to look at, I scrolled through the entire tour again, haha!) 🌻 I would really love to know how many hours of work you put into gardening each week 🙂
    Happy gardening and lots of love
    Maisy

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Hello Maisy, thank you so much for following along on IG and for watching the tour. We actually spend a lot more time enjoying, looking at, and harvesting the garden than we do actually working in it. Maybe a few hours a week? We will occasionally deadhead the spend flower blooms if we feel like it, however, most of the “work” is optional, and doesn’t necessarily “need” to be done. Once all the plants are in the beds, they do pretty well on their own as long as they are getting watered (which we have automated). It actually takes more time or work getting ready for our spring/summer and fall/winter seasons or plantings with starting/raising seedlings, amending the raised beds, re-applying mulch to the top of the beds etc. So in all, most of the work is done in between seasons and once we have everything planted out, most of the “work” is already done. Hope that helps and thanks again for following along!

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