Keep Hope Alive…

…and keep Joy alive, and Faith, and Alvin…(what?  You don’t name your plants?)
Yep. I’m hoping to keep things alive at this point, 4 days into what will likely be a record cold spell for Phoenix.  But I don’t really want to focus right now on who’s dying.  (Like my tomato plants, and eggplant, and zucchini, and potatoes.)
Sad eggplant, happy lettuce!

Sad eggplant, happy lettuce!

For your Monday Muse, I want share some of the inspiring things happening in the garden.  First off, the veggies!  Even in the midst of below 32*, I still have lots of dill, cilantro, sage, thyme, chives, lemongrass, oregano, chocolate mint, lemon balm, green onion, and leeks.

Herbaliciousness!

Herbaliciousness!

Most of these are protected under cover, but at 22* in my garden, it’s necessary.  Some of my bigger successes are my leafy greens – lettuce, kale, and chard – all ready for harvest.
Unstoppable rainbow chard.

Unstoppable rainbow chard.

I have other cruciferous veggies (broccoli, cabbage, choi, brussel sprouts) growing strong getting ripe for spring plucking.
Don’t think my success here is some magical gardener trick.  This takes some effort.  Like the bunch of plants I have to keep in the garage until its safe enough to plant.  I’ve had to hustle them outside every other day for watering and to soak up some sun.  (These would be a bunch of tomatoes, peppers, hibiscus, and new geraniums.)
Cheddar Chas is babysitting the plants keeping the frost away.

Cheddar Chas is babysitting the plants keeping the frost away.

The real treats in the garden are all the blooming wonders. My orange justicia (justicia spicigera) is completely un-phased by the extreme cold, and continues to bloom, keeping Lizabelle (my garden hummingbird) quite happy.
Justicia spicigera - garden radiance all year-round.

Justicia spicigera – garden radiance all year-round.

Right alongside is the rosemary, blooming for the occasional bee.  Another spectacle in the garden is the valentine emu (eremophila maculata).   This one has blooms as well as a wonderful fragrance (I often carry a branch in my pocket as aroma therapy).
Not all hope is lost for those hit by the freeze.  Many of the classic perennials taking a hit (a nice dormant nap for them), will later wake up vibrant come spring.
Lavender pinata waiting for spring to spring.

Lavender pinata waiting for spring to spring.

Wildflowers are on the way!

Wildflowers are on the way!

So keep your chin up, and in no time this too shall pass, and our gardens can get back to their usual warm, blooming selves.
Magical geraniums summoning spring!

Magical geraniums summoning spring!

About Vynnie McDaniels

Better Living Through Gardening
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