Planting a Summer Vegetable Garden

It’s an exciting day indeed: the summer garden has officially been planted! You might be thinking, Rose, it’s awfully early, but I live in zone 8 (Dallas) so I have a long growing season and am very used to starting my summer garden between late March and early April. Last year I got an enormous amount of food out of my one little 4×8 bed.

Looking for information on how to start a vegetable garden? Read this.

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

I thought it would be helpful to show you what the garden looks like when it’s just been planted because, frankly, it looks barren but that’s the point! You’ve got to leave room for things to grow. In the back row, I have six tomato plants in cages: two red cherry tomatoes, two large tomatoes, a Roma tomato, and a yellow cherry tomato. (Want to grow your own? Read my tomato grow guide here.)

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

This is a change for me; in recent years, I’ve almost exclusively grown cherry tomatoes. I decided I’m in a rut and I found a few really fun big tomato varieties that I wanted to try. The big ones are in the center cages to *hopefully* block the view from the birds a little better.

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

Next I have a row of six peppers on stakes: two red bell peppers, two yellow bell peppers, a purple bell pepper, and a jalepeno (which I’m quite excited about because I’ve never tried to grow jalapeno before). Between the pepper row and the tomato row, I have four basil plants. I might add a fifth but I didn’t have the heart to pull up the Brussels sprouts (which are late due to the snowpocalypse) and they’re right where the fifth basil plant would go.

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

On the left side of the garden, I have three eggplants: black beauty, Ichiban, and fairytale. *Swoon* Last year I grew eggplant for the first time and quickly became obsessed. (Read my eggplant grow guide here.) Even if you don’t like eating eggplant, I highly recommend this plant for your garden because it’s so beautiful. I’m excited to try two new varieties this year!

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

The right side of the garden I reserved for something really special: a French cantaloupe that’s sad to be the most delicious cantaloupe in the world. Obviously I had to try it! The soil is still a bit too cold (60 degrees) for the seeds to germinate (it needs to be 65-85 so we’re almost there) but I’ll keep you posted! The idea is that the vines can spill out of the garden towards the fire pit patio and be fairly out of the way.

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

I also planted some orange and yellow marigolds in the garden to ward off pests. An added bonus: they look cute as heck in the vegetable garden!

Marigolds in a Vegetable Garden

Summer Vegetable Garden Ideas

I wasn’t planning on growing squash this year because squash vine borers are so prominent in my area, but I saw this Peter Pan squash and just had to have it. I grew squash last year and I did get quite a lot of squash before the SVBs got to it. I decided to grow Peter Pan in a pot instead of the vegetable garden. That way I won’t be as heartbroken when it no doubt is eaten alive by SVB.

Growing Peter Pan Squash

That’s it for now. I’ll let you know how the garden grows!

Happy planting,

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