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  1. It’s wonderful how passionate you are with your garden. Finding something in life which brings you so much joy is a godsend. Actually, I can feel your love for your fur babies too. I read your older post about raised gardens and it reminds me of my Grandma. She was in a wheelchair later in life and she had raised beds on her deck so she could grow a few veggies. She cooked in restaurants her entire life and “fresh” produce was important for her. I remember how much she enjoyed such a simple pleasure such as picking lettuce and such. Stay well.

  2. Just about every single thing we do, business-wise, will need to be different and more difficult too. But we can learn quick right? Start hunting about 6 months before you need something…and maybe you will receive it. However, I ordered some TP from Amazon…must be at least 3 months ago or more…still not here. However, we DO still have other choices…and I no longer need that one. Big huge struggle yesterday and today with a mis-delivered package that used FedEx to deliver. The crazy nut delivered my box as well as something for a neighbor who lives above us. Well, guess what…I guess they must be blind…HUGE big “A” above one bldg and a huge “C” above ours…too hard I guess. So just leave it any ole place…fortunately, if I order using my PO Box, which involved more effort to go get, but still…at least there no FedEx to deal with. Worse than all this was the run around and even lies from FedEx however. Sigh…I am a person VERY prone to patronize less than huge companies. I explained to them AT LENGTH today how important it is to reduce stress in life now…and one way I do so, is to change to buying from a different company etc. By the way, the people who answer the phones usually are supposed to get you OFF the phone within 15 minutes max…so my goal, when they are not being helpful, is to keep them on the line at least 20-30 minutes. TIME IS MONEY…some are slower to learn that than others!! ARGH!! And be persistent, until SOMEONE will solve the problem.

    1. Same thing happened to me yesterday. I order online so I don’t have to be out around people. But the Amazon guy took it to the office. It said it was delivered via email so I figured it was sitting in front of the shed or down at the office. It was at the office. So I had to go around the kid down there who doesn’t wear a mask and defeated the whole purpose.

  3. Brenda . . . I remember being concerned at the time they removed your trees that it may dramatically change your “patio climate” and I suspect that is the case. Shade cloth may be your only option to replace the loss of the shade trees.

    1. I’ve been looking at that. I just haven’t located stakes that are over 4 feet tall. I have plants that are 6 feet tall.

  4. Brenda, have you ever planted portulaca or purslane? They love the heat and sun. I bet that would grown well on your patio and give you lots of color. Sometimes it will come back, sometimes not. You would have to buy the little plants, though. The seeds are really tiny and hard to get them to come up

  5. Just to let you know the photos 5 & 10 are Petunias not Pansies. I grow both in Sydney, Australia. Really enjoy your blog

  6. Your patio garden looks so lovely! We’re finding that full sun is almost unbearable now, even for sun living plants. And there’s a limited amount of shade on our back deck fir containers to retreat to. This weekend we planted many herb plants in containers are are hopeful they will all survive.

    1. No, but I’m not surprised. I’ve never seen such heat as here recently. And it began a month or so ago in the spring.

  7. How about using shade cloth over your plants. Use sticks or rods to hold it up.

    1. I’m looking at the cloths online. But I have to find something really tall to put in the pots to hold it up.

    1. Yeah, I’ve often planted portulacas, but haven’t the past few years because they didn’t have the colors I wanted.

  8. Do you have a photo of the gold zinnia from the past? I would love to see their color. I never heard of gold zinnias. They must be lovely!

      1. Ivy is adorable as a kitten… that’s a fabulous picture of her. So cute!!!

  9. Didn’t you have a large tree removed recently?
    The crepe myrtles are blooming in my back yard. The blooms were in just the top last week but now the are spreading all over. I planted Caladiums bulbs late this year because the store was not open.
    We have had no rain in June until last Friday night. I had my wheelbarrow on the patio. It was full on Saturday afternoon. It has rained twice since then with more rain in the forecast for this week.

    1. I had two trees until a few years ago. They were in the middle of where the fence was growing and had to be cut down.

      1. Wouldn’t that make more sun and cause your plants to peak earlier?

  10. Concentrate on sedums, so many varieties. I love the ice plant I just bought. They take the sun and thrive on less water than annuals.

  11. Hi Brenda. I went to the Tulsa County OSU extension service website and found this PDF of drought tolerant plants:

    Granted, it probably is for planting in yards rather than containers. But if you go to the extension service website, there is a contact place that lists a horticulture expert who probably has information for container gardening. If you go to the extension service office they always have great free handouts on gardening and other things, including recipes. This makes me realize I haven’t been to the extension service office in the county we now live in and I should give them a visit to see what is available.

  12. Here in Metro Detrot, my normal, monthly water bill used to be $90.00 a month. Last month, $140.00 Food for my husband or water for my plants. I may soon have to make a difficult decision soon.

    1. I pay a monthly bill of $25 for water to the apartment complex. No restrictions that I know of.

  13. I know that you have invested a lot in those pots and plant caddies but you might consider a few more raised beds rather than containers. The containers just can’t retain enough water in 100 degree heat. This year, I had the same problems as you did finding seeds and plants in Michigan. Our weather has been just awful here. We had snow in May, a heatwave, a late frost, a torrential wind and rain storm and power failure in June. I lost all my difficult to find annuals in the late frost and had to go try to find replacement plants. Then DTE cut all the trees after the storm and ruined my flower beds. What was left was torn up by squirrels who no longer have trees to live in anymore. Raised beds filled with perennials and lots of red pepper flakes are easier to maintain. I don’t have large raised beds. They are just enough. i added a small soaker hose to them. So much easier than trying to water in the heat. This year has been just crazy for plant lovers and gardeners. But what your photos do show is your true love of gardening. Don’t worry about what you lose but enjoy what you have. I had to learn that the hard way. My son came over for Father’s Day and said, “Mom, your flowers are always so beautiful. You always have a perfect yard.” Little did he know the trials and tribulations that I encountered this year. I didn’t even bother to tell him. I just smiled and said. “Thank you.” Have a blessed day and may all your plant bloom profusely.

    1. I just came back in from moving my potting bench in front of the galvanized plant garden facing the alley. I moved my trees around a bit and I’ll watch to see if the sun gets to them. But that Japanese maple has pretty wide branches and can really help the potted plants unless the sun scorches the leaves. We’ll see.

      1. Just remembered Miracle-Gro Water Storing Crystals which I’ve used in the past. Wonder if it would help your pots retain water longer? Amazon carries it and it’s $4 cheaper than Walmart.

  14. Park seed company has several different colors of zinnias. I ordered $50 work of packets for my garden. Please check them out. Thanks.

    1. I know I checked their seeds out in the spring, but then they seemed expensive. I’ll check again. Thanks.

  15. My potted plants are running about 50/50. Half are doing well and the others look pathetic. Our weather here in south, central Virginia has been so bizarre with erratic temperature changes and heavy rains. Just had an influx of Japanese beetles that tore up my morning glories and moonflower! Seems as though each year it is getting more difficult to grow nice plants. With all the rain ( and flooding) we have had, even the vegetable garden is struggling. Looks like I will be incorporating more house plants inside to enjoy!

    1. It’s for sure gotten more difficult for me each year. Hotter and hotter every season. And now my pretty settee that I like to have in that corner under the tree branches is being used to shield plants in the middle of the patio!

  16. The sun where I live has been brutal for this time of year. We’ve been getting temperatures in the high 80s with very high dew points that make its oppressive to be outdoors for long. The sun burns my skin if I’m out too long, it may be because of some of the meds I take for my high blood pressure and heart. But everybody complains about having issues breathing except the youngest of the young. The air is so wet and heavy you feel like you’re in a steam bath constantly. The hostas I bought specifically to go underneath the picture window at the front of my house that get hours of sun in the afternoon were scorched! I was watering and watering but my old hose died so I wasn’t able to let the sprinkler run on low for hours at a time; am waiting for a new-fangled hose to be delivered but it is evidently one of those things from China and they don’t tell you that until after you order and then you’re told you may have to wait as long as 8 weeks! Around here – summer could be over in 8 weeks! We are not getting the nice dependable steady rains weeks after week like I remember from 40 years ago when I first started gardening. Yes, the climate has definitely changed; it’s gotten much hotter here in the summers, the dew points are higher than they ever used to be so it’s hard to breathe outside even if you’re just sitting still it’s uncomfortable, and the rain is unreliable. When it does rain we tend now to get torrential downpours which are not helpful as most of it runs off instead of soaking an inch at a time into the lawn and garden beds. I am hand watering right now daily and it’s a pain in the neck (literally)! It’s been so hot and dry, even the lawns have stopped growing, and this is the first year that has happened this early in the season. It has cut down on my cutting, at least. But the grass looks like straw. The whole point of living in SE Wisconsin is because we’re supposed to have verdant green everywhere surrounding us. Not this year, not unless you are willing to spend a fortune watering and either have hoses (arrrgggghhhhhh) or a sprinkler system already installed. And even though I live right on top of Lake Michigan, water can run $200 a quarter or even more if I water the gardens and the grass. But I must have green around me. I could never live in a desert climate.

    1. I just pay $25 for water here. I use one of those squiggly hoses. The others are too hard on my back as they are heavy to drag around. The ones I get are very lightweight.

  17. My garden is doing well this year here in WV. We haven’t had many scorching days, but we have had a lot of rain! I did have to bring in my hanging plants and container plants in early May because we had freeze warnings. The plants I brought in the house started to die because they were in the house for about a week and not in the right lighting conditions. Once I put them back out they perked up and now are flourishing!

  18. Yep gotta love the zinnias. I live where it’s regularly 110 plus and everything dries up and scorches. But not the zinnias. They just keep right on going. I plant them every year. They make the best cut flowers too. I have to agree, my plants started from seed are doing much better than nursery transplants. Wonder why that is.

  19. Brenda, Your garden is gorgeous, pink zinnias and all. As an FYI I have seen some zinnia pots with mature plants in the colors that you love at my Home Depot. Have you been to yours or maybe another garden center? They may even be having a sale since the season is soon coming to a close. As for those trees in pots I wish I could incorporate that into my garden somehow.You’ve got me thinking!
    Hope you’re having beautiful days where you live, ours have been just glorious, albeit hot, here in NJ!

    1. I don’t go out to stores. And at this time of year whatever I planted would probably die. I’ve found you need to plant in the spring so the roots can get strong before the plant has to battle horrid heat conditions.

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