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I don’t think I’m going to regret harvesting the last of the basil and parsley today.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, final herb harvest of 2016

Phoenix is COLD!!!! Like, ridiculously cold even if I am a big baby about the cold now.

I don’t know what my garden will look like come morning, so I’m glad I heard the freeze warning on the radio on my way home from work. Now on to bigger decisions – pesto? Caprese salad?

This just in: My yellow pear tomatoes are starting to ripen! Yay!

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, pear tomatoes ripening

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, pear tomatoes ripening

They’re not really growing upside down or sideways – it’s just that the plants have gotten so big that some of the branches are beginning to fall over and out of their cages.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, pear tomatoes ripening

The beefsteak tomatoes and the cherry ones should be following suit in the coming weeks. As you might imagine, I’m terribly excited about these recent developments.

Growing great in the closet hanging storage units turned garden containers:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, container garden update

My, my, it’s February in Phoenix, so that must mean it’s growing season, right? I’m hoping so.

Here’s what my former hanging storage units turned container garden look like now:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, 2016 vegetable and herb garden

Tomatoes, peppers, lemon cucumbers, beets, parsley, oregano and basil. The soil at the base of the containers is for flowers, specifically, zinnias and Zauschneria (California fuchsia).

Not sure if the beets will make it or not – it may already be too warm for them. It’s going to be in the 80s all week.

The same goes for the butter lettuce and radishes I planted – I may have missed the cool season they prefer. But I’m trying anyway. I put them in the shade (pictured below) so maybe they’ll be ok.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, 2016 vegetable and herb garden

Another experimental planting is strawberries! I love, love, love strawberries!

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, 2016 vegetable and herb garden

I’m not sure how they’ll do. I don’t have a tower for them like I did a few years ago, so they’re going to have to adapt to a confined space.

I planted some flowers along with all the veggies and herbs. Still looking for a decent container for the chayote squash.

I’ll install drip irrigation in the next few days so that everyone will have plenty of water.

All in all, the backyard is quietly transforming from all rocks to a desert oasis. Which is good, as I spend lots of time outside. It definitely feels good to get my hands dirty again.


Good To Grow, Liza's photos, backdoor with an Ikea rug

I like the splash of red.

My little ragtag backdoor garden:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Liza's new garden

Featured are: A rosemary plant, a Euphorbia milii (the cuttings I brought back from Florida – they’re doing so-so these days, better since they’ve arrived outdoors), a poppy plant, my citrus tree, basil, and a Lantana plant.

The citrus tree has been struggling. She lost a LOT of leaves during the move to Phoenix. Wanh, wanh, wanh.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Liza's new garden

Poor baby!

But she held on to the one fruit she produced before the move. A fruit that I naively believed would turn yellow any day:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Liza's new garden

A fruit that never did turn yellow. Which means it’s a lime, not a lemon. Which means the tree I bought had been mislabeled. I had my suspicions when the fruits from last year didn’t yellow, and of course, tasted like limes. But after that harvest, I forgot all about them.

The tree has actually started to do better, putting out new leaves, now that it’s outdoors. Citrus trees in outdoor Phoenix are a good fit – it should do really well here.

But now I want a lemon tree. And maybe an orange tree, too.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Liza's garden

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Liza's container garden

Because I’m a neatfreak…

This crap had to go on a recent warm afternoon.

Most of it, anyway. The Gaillardia still had an awful lot of green for a plant that was supposedly zapped by the frost:

Most of the flowers were frost-bitten but surprisingly there were lots of new flower buds. Apparently the Blanket Flowers aren’t ready for dormancy.

There were other surprises, too.

Like the sickly parsley plants I found once I cleared out the basil:

It’s hard to believe they could hold on in the shadow of the monster basil. But they did.

So did these succulents I found when I cleared out the Portulaca:

Surprise! I did not expect to find those.

Cleaning out garden clutter is always a lot of work, but it’s worth it.

Come spring, I’ll be glad I got the hard work out of the way.

What about you? Have you cleaned up your garden yet, or are you going to wait until spring?

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here.

Wanh, wanh, wanh.

Albuquerque’s first frost was Sunday night. In one swoop, my back door container garden has been wiped out.

Goodbye, pretty Gaillardia!

Thank you for your cheerful blooms which greeted me every day from June until November.

Goodbye delicious basil!

Ouch! You look terrible. But thank you for your service all summer – you tasted great. Still have lots of basil seeds – any takers?

Goodbye pretty Zinnias and Portulaca!

You were happy additions to my container garden, thank you for beautifying the place!

Bye Osteospermum, you’ll be missed!

Dang. Frosts are harsh.

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you back here.

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About Me

Hi! My name is Liza. Welcome to my blog and thanks for visiting! I'm a Midwestern gal now living in Arizona, after many years of living in and owning a plant care business in New Mexico.

Plants are living, breathing creatures, and if they're indoor plants, they are 100% dependent on human care. They cannot water themselves.

I can beautify your home, office, or patio with plants and flowers. I have 13 years of experience growing plants, and friendships.

Please let me know if you have questions or if you would like help with your plants or garden. You can reach me at lizatheplantlady (at) gmail (dot) com or follow me on Twitter, Lizawheeler7.

All photos are mine unless otherwise noted. All content is also entirely my hard work. If you'd like to use any content or photos, all you have to do is ask. If you take without asking, you are a thief. And thieves suck. So don't suck. We have a deal? Good.