Garden Plans for the 2022 Season

Monday, May 23, 2022

Happy Monday! Today I want to share some of my plans for the upcoming gardening season!

Let's start with my cut flower garden! The biggest thing I'm growing in 2022 is dahlias! I have fallen so hard for these flowers in the last few years, and I've been collecting tubers of new varieties over the winter. I'm the most excited about the anemone style dahlia varieties that I'm adding, like Sandia Brocade and Totally Tangerine. My tubers overwintered beautifully and I've been able to get them all planted and given a bunch to friends and family. Most of my dahlias are in our side yard garden, but a few are on the driveway in pots.

I have a pinterest board to organize all the dahlias I grow, if you're interested: Growing Dahlias Pinterest Board

I also started a bunch of dahlias from seeds. I collected the seeds from a few varieties last season, and I'm excited to see if I manage to get any winners! I collected from Jowey Winnie, Crichton Honey, and Take Off. Dahlia's grown from seed are not true to the parent variety, so it's a real mystery as to what the seed dahlia will be like!

Around the 1st of March I pulled out a bunch of tubers to warm up for taking cuttings. If you force the tubers to sprout early, but can cut off the sprout once it has a few sets of leaves and root it to create a new plant. I also did this with new varieties as they arrived throughout Spring. I went a little bit overboard and I ended up with over 30 new plants this way! It was hard to stop!

In terms of other cut flowers, I'm growing strawflowers (always, in honor of my paternal grandmother), marigolds, calendula, geraniums, morning glory and zinnias. This year I've tried simply direct sowing my zinnias. Last year they did so badly, I think partially because I let them languish in the seed cells for too long. I also started a few varieties of rudbeckia and some 'green twister' echinacea that I'm really excited about!

For the second year in a row I made up my own hanging baskets to flank our front door, since hanging baskets can be so expensive. I used 3 six-packs of impatiens for two hanging baskets which ends up being less than $10. They will fill in nicely in a few weeks!

For our vegetable garden, we grow everything in containers on our driveway. A few years ago we made a couple boxes (I think this will be our 3rd season in those), and we've got a bunch of grow bags, galvanized tubs, pots and some crates too. It's a bit of a mishmash, but it works for us! Our driveway gets a decent amount of sun, and since it's asphalt it gets really hot.

We're primarily growing two things, tomatoes and peppers. I did grow radish and arugula early in the season, but those have already been harvested to make space for the warm season veg. For tomatoes we're growing all cherry, indeterminate varieties. They're our favorite to eat and with our setup they do better than larger tomatoes. I started seeds for Sungold and Black Cherry varieties. I also saved and started seeds from an unknown tomato. We get these amazing orange cherry tomatoes through our CSA and I took a chance and saved seeds from those last year. It may not have been an open-pollinated variety so we'll see if the resulting fruit is any good. We love them so much though, it is worth the risk!

I am SO proud of my tomato plants. I started them at the end of March in our basement. At planting time some were almost 2' tall!! This is only my second year starting some from seed and I'm thrilled with how big and healthy they are. I was able to bury 8-10" of the stems when I planted them. As if I needed more tomato plants (I ended up with 18 plants from seed), I bought a couple because I couldn't resist! We're growing two Sunsugar and a Sunrise Bumblebee. Both yellow/orange cherries.

For peppers we have some pretty standard varieties we grow every year. We always grow Anaheim, Sweet Banana, Sriracha, and Serrano. The Sriracha are really similar in flavor to JalapeƱos, but seem to do better for us. I think they're also a bit milder heat-wise. I also started some peppers from seed. I've got 5 plants of Lunchbox Yellow snacking peppers, and a plant each of two hot varieties, Aji and Sugar Rush just for fun.

We always like to try a few new things every year, so we're growing onions! I ordered Walla Walla onion starts from Johnny's Seeds and ended up with around 60 starts. We love these little sweet onions, so I really hope they do well. I also brought home two seed potatoes from my Dad (I think they're Yukon gold), that I'm trying out in a crate. That experiment may not work, but it's worth a try! I also brought home some of my parent's strawberry plants that were growing in their grass. I stuck those in a galvanized tub where they're free to grow wild.

I think that's about it! I'm really excited for this season, I love gardening. One of my favorite things about it is going out early each morning to see how things have grown and changed, and taking care of watering/harvesting tasks. It's quiet out and is such a peaceful activity. Once things get blooming I love to see all the bees and butterflies enjoying the flowers. And of course eating tomatoes directly off the vine, the best.

Happy Growing!


Charlotte M. said...

I love watching your garden. I can't wait to see the dahlias! Gardening is such fun!

Anonymous said...

So excited to see another fabric and garden lover!
I have a nursery. I love dahlias!
They are so perfect. It’s hard for me to sew during the spring and summer because I’m outside and in the greenhouses.
I love sewing,quilting and gardening!
Best wishes for plentiful crops! Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Your garden is really doing well. It must be very satisfying to successfully start so many plants. I have given up on the tomatoes, peppers and eggplant. So far I still eat potatoes, we will see how long that lasts. I have found I don’t feel well after eating plants from the nightshade family. And yet I can seat and eat a bowl of cherry tomatoes especially the sweet ones. We have also planted a bunch of dahlias this year. Last year my husband planted them with a composite that was still to hot and cooked the tuber.

Anonymous said...

I feel the same way- love those cherry tomatoes. I have a question though. We have recently moved, and the only place for veggies would be on a concrete pad. Do your wooden boxes have bottoms, and if so, how do they drain? I’m really hoping you might have the solution I’ve been looking for. Thank you as always for your entertaining and informative blog.

Leslie aka zoeandcooper said...

Your garden is amazing! Do you have grow lights? We just moved into a new place and have amazing yard space so I of course have plans:) It seems you have so many more options when you start from seed. I am thinking about setting up our unfinished store room as a grow room.

Jeni Baker said...

Thank you! It is!

Jeni Baker said...

Same here, I have been spending so much more time outside. It feels heavenly after being cooped up all winter long!

Jeni Baker said...

Thank you! I absolutely love cherry tomatoes, but really only the summer grown ones. We planted all sweet ones this year. Best of luck with your dahlias!!

Jeni Baker said...

They do have bottoms, and then drain because the two ends act as feet that hold the bottom off the ground. We made them using this video tutorial:

Jeni Baker said...

Thank you! I use shop lights with LED bulbs in them. One cool and one warm. The special grow bulbs are too pricey for me, and this setup seems to get the job done just fine!!

Rebeca said...

Gosh lots of comments..and here goes another one. How does your garden grow...maybe on my small blog I will use this title.. although I haven't written anything lately and talk about my little plants as well..but I will let you know.. watermelons..I have never grown these from seed and they are neat. Like you I want to see what they have this little furry stuff growing from part of the's so neat..and I love your garden JB ..what you've done from a college dorm to your small apartment to your driveway...thanks.

Bernie Kringel said...

I can't believe you got two six packs of impatiens for under $10? That is fantastic! We are in Washington state for the first spring ever (moved up here from California) so we aren't really planting much. I want to see how the yard does with what is here - then we will have a better idea of what to actually plant. I did go get plants to makes some pots for the front porch though. I will get to those tomorrow. Love being out in the garden!