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"Possibility and promise greet me each day as I walk out into my garden. My vigor is renewed when I breathe in the earthiness and feel the dirt between my fingers. My garden is a peaceful spot to refresh my soul." Meems

Welcome to my Central Florida Garden Blog where we garden combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly plants, and tropicals.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Chilly Winter Weather and Veggie Garden Fun

Floridians certainly have had more than our usual share of opportunities to wear our jackets, gloves, and hats this winter. Since January 1 we have had consistently above-average chilly weather cycles.

My favorite little 4 year old helper loves it like I do. So we simply get outdoors and get things done together.

After he planted his own radishes and nasturtiums, he used the labelmaker for marking his pots.

Gotta love it ... organization is a good thing to learn ... the earlier the better.
We had just planted our tomato and pepper seedlings last week. So when the nighttime weather was forecasted to reach near-freezing temps again we decided to cover that one bed. The rest of the beds have either cool season veggies or newly planted seeds in them so they were left to the elements.
My best helper is an eager volunteer to hammer into the ground with the mallet the PVC pipe that will keep the insulator cloth suspended above the plants.

The temperatures didn't drop quite as low as predicted so no damage was done.

We'll continue to enjoy the chilly weather for as long as it hangs on. Afterall, we know it will be ridiculously humid and hot before we know it. But let's not even think about that right now.


  1. I too have tried to embrace the cooler temps..I wish I would have learned to be more oraganized when I was young!

  2. What a joy to have your best helper in the garden. I can't wait until we can get out and do something in our garden. It is still frozen here.

  3. I'm glad you didn't get the frost but these cooler temperatures are really delaying spring in the south. Nice to have a little helper and so important to teach our children about the garden.

  4. I am so jealous of your soil. Here in Pinellas, it is sand, sand, sand. I'm sure you had to do a lot to get it to look that way.

    Your helper looks like a future gardener for sure.

    BTW, I love the new pictures at the head of your blog.

  5. What a lucky pair you are to wok together in the garden. Your youngest helper is learning so very much about nature, botany and he gets to practice his spelling, too! Have a sweet weekend~gail

  6. Hello Meems,
    I can't believe the weather conditions for this time of year. It is very hot and dry here and you are still having very cool weather. Hubby is in Miami and enjoying the coolness, I told him he is lucky to be there and not here. Hugs to you my friend.

  7. I am so glad your tomatoes and peppers were unscathed. I still need to get some seedlings to plant. I have had to admit defeat on my tomatoes I started from seed. The poor things have not grown at all in 6 weeks! What variety of tomatoes do you have?

    Love the garden helper you have doing your "muscle" work. Having his own veggies to tend is a great idea.

  8. You have the best helper!

    I hope the cold weather doesn't do any damage to your beautiful garden. I can't imagine planting veggies and nasturtiums right now.

  9. Your little helper with the labelmaker is so adorable! My daughter has one that I'll need to borrow...hadn't thought of that before. You're lucky to enjoy this weather. I've done very little outside for weeks, because the cold makes my bones ache and my joints stiffen up. Hopefully, it's all uphill from here.

  10. Meems ~ How wonderful to have an eager and willing helper. Your new crops look great and I look forward to seeing your gardens as time goes on.


  11. Aw, your little helper is adorable Meems, and gosh, look how he's grown!

  12. Meems~~ Favorite Four Year Old is a cutie pie. Just look at him work. Don't you just love how a little adult encouragement allows their egos to soar?

    The weather is weird everywhere this year, it seems. I'm glad your nighttime lows didn't hurt your crops. I like your attitude. You can't change it so you might as well enjoy it.

    Please tell FFYO that your blogger friends think he's adorable.

  13. Tomatoes!!! Healthy, sturdy, nice plants! I won't see them earlier than late May here. What a good helper you have!

  14. Your veggie garden seems already had a good start. Your little helper must add more gardening fun for you! I love the idea that use the pvc pipe to suspend the insulator cloth. I am with you, I enjoy the cool weather, as long as it doesn't freeze. Although my plants might like a little warmer weather like what we are having now ...

  15. meems,
    love the way the veggie garden is coming back together in your earlier post. i love seeing the lettuces standing so straight and tall. also love the delicate allyssum is white and purple. great of my favourites.
    that beautiful boy is just the perfect helper in any weather.
    we are very cold here but better than it's been and the sun is shining, always a bonus.
    enjoy your spring plantings.

  16. I am soooo envious! Just kidding. Wow already putting out tomatoes!

  17. Meems,
    Good for you for letting the little guy help you in your garden.My grandpa used to let me help him in his garden when I was small and that is some of the best memorys I have of him. Makes a kid feel really special!

  18. Darla,
    You have some cooler temps to embrace way up there in the north. :-)

    Such enthusiasm is not to be taken for granted ~~ while it lasts. He's learning a lot and teaching me a lot, too.

    Lancashire rose,
    Delaying spring is one way to look at it. Wow... can't remember a winter this long in forever.

    Soil in FLORIDA is sand, sand, and more sand. The soil you're seeing here is imported... one truck load at a time. And shoveled the same way into the veggie garden. Thanks for letting me know about the headers.

    He is SO into spelling right now. And typing. And helping. It is a glorious age and I'm soaking up every minute of it.

    I've been wondering how your weather conditions are with us so cold. Seems like you would get drifts of these spells but I guess not. When it reaches Miami you know it is cold. They are probably really loving it for a change.

    Your tomatoes probably haven't been able to get warm enough to get a good start. Seems like a good year to start with seedlings. Mine were purchased at the garden center ~~ Duncheon's. I went with all Patio this year. Another trial to see how they do and only 4 plants instead of so many like last year. I'll likely have some volunteers sprout up as well... always seems to happen. Last year my little one grew his own tomato plant. He'll do that again as well.

    I don't think too much more damage can be done to the garden. The tomatoes don't appreciate temps below 40 so I'm covering them but everything is that can be damaged is toast already.

    This daytime weather is exhilerating and gets me moving. Sometimes I think I'm trying to beat the clock and get it all done before spring. That's impossible but it feels like it at times. More cold on the way this week. Wow.

    Well, the veggie garden is almost put back together completely and except for a few seeds to still plant we are on our way with spring's garden. I'll surely keep you posted with progress... or even lack of it. lol

    SO adorable if I do say so myself... and getting SO big!

    Thanks, Grace, we think FFYO is a cutie-pie, too. So eager and so willing. Such the explorer, too. He loves having free reign of the back garden now that he's older and I don't have to stick right by his side. He can play while I work... it's great fun to have him around so often.

    Let's hope the tomatoes stay that way and give us good stuff to eat ... should happen by April.

    I think most of the plants have gotten acclamated to this extra-cold winter. The warm sun is causing them to bud out in many cases though. I just hope we have a mild spring and don't skip right to summer. Ack.

    It's been a long haul but today I started feeling like most of the veggie garden is complete. Still have some seeds to plant but all the foundations are in place. Our little fellow will be checking the progress with me. Radishes grow quickly so he will see results soon.

    Soon you will be happy for what we call "cold" weather.

    It was my Papa that gardened and I LOVED to help him with his veggies. Great memories. I'm so blessed my little one loves to get involved.

  19. I, too, had to cover my new tomato plants. Hopefully we'll stay above freezing from here on out.

  20. Hope you get a bounty of tomatoes and other goodies, Meems! Tell that cold weather to move on out of there. It's almost spring, so it will have to set up house someplace else! Love your little guy...what a sweet helper to have in your garden;-0


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