So thankful

When the gardening season begins, you never know what it has in store: excessive heat or rain; a bounty or dearth of edible crops; too many garden pests or being able to successfully fend them off. Overall, 2018 was a good growing year for me in my Zone 6b garden.

Today is Thanksgiving for those who celebrate in the U.S., and now that the food has been made and the dinner has been served, I'm able to take a step back and reflect on what it is I am thankful for this year, with a gardening twist.


1. Spring: I have decided that it is officially my favorite season. Whether it is the relief of winter ending or just seeing the variety of spring-blooming flowers emerge from the soil or blossoms on trees, in the northeast, spring is a sneak peek of what's to come and brighter days ahead.


2. Seeds. Nothing is more amazing then placing a tiny piece of hope into the soil, adding water and watching it grow. It still delights me every time.


3. Growing my own food: It's delicious and empowering. This year was an especially great year to grow peas and peppers.

 

4. Dayliles! This perennial grows in a wide range of areas and there are so many varieties that can add color and drama to the garden. I've been planting many more this past fall so there will be lots of pretty varieties to photograph next summer!


5. My pollinator-friendly property, which encourages mason bees, monarch caterpillars and more to grow here safely, without the threat of pesticides. It's so easy to be organic, that if you aren't already gardening with organic practices in mind, now is the time to try.


6. Monarch butterflies. This year I successfully raised 127 healthy monarchs that have hopefully already arrived in Mexico to overwinter. I also officially registered my garden as a Monarch Waystation (#21,097) since I finally had success in milkweed returning in such numbers that monarchs were noticing.

Attendees of the 2018 Garden Bloggers Fling in Austin, Texas. Photo courtesy of http://gardenbloggersfling.blogspot.com/.
7. Other garden bloggers — especially when they gather in mass for the annual Garden Bloggers Fling! Who knew there were so many people who enjoy traveling, viewing and writing about gardens? I've been lucky enough to attend two of these events and I'm looking forward to my third this June!


8. Overwintering dahlias: I'm getting better at it so each year my collection expands naturally!

9. Being able to grow new varieties of plants or try out gardening products and share those experiences with readers of Frau Zinnie. A special thanks to all the plant companies who consider me an influencer. (These posts are marked on the blog.)

10. And of course, I saved the best for last: I'm grateful for all the people who take time out of their day to read my blog or follow my social media posts on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. I enjoy interacting with you and look forward to the many more conversations to come!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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