Gardening, Minnesota

Vegetable Garden 2017

We have been spending the last few weeks with dreaming of our 2017 Vegetable Garden Plan. We’re finally putting our plans to work. Dusty prepped the garden for a new season of fresh vegetables in our back yard. A few years ago he built these awesome raised garden beds and then we expanded our garden space by planting right into the ground. We plan to build additional raised garden plans in the future and by we, I mean Dusty.

Here is what our gardens looked like the year Dusty built them- they were in their glory with a fresh stain.

raised garden beds built by Dining Duster

This year he took a couple of hours to prep the garden space by tilling the areas and then topped them off with compost dirt, some vermiculite and organic fertilizer. We’d like to think we’ve grown a little wiser with age so he also inserted the cages into the ground right away. In years past, we have put off adding the cages until it’s almost too late.  Then of course we risk breaking off some of the plants in order to get the cages positioned correctly.

We purchased all of our starter plants at Valley Veggies this year.

Valley Veggies is a 5th generation vegetable stand and they are chemical free! Click to read more about how have successfully sold garden vegetables and plants for 5 generations. We were there strictly for the chemical-free starter plants for our garden. According to their Facebook Page, they also offer pick-your-own herb and flower bunches. Additionally, they sell certified omega-3 eggs, a variety of natural milk, ice cream, yogurt & other dairy products. For the meat-eaters, they offer broiler chickens as well as naturally raised pork, beef, elk and buffalo products.

Valley Veggies in Lake Crystal, MN

Vegetable Garden Plans 2017

Vegetable Garden Plans 2017 Dining Duster

So many tomatoes to chose from!

Vegetable Garden Plans 2017

Beautiful purple basil

We love to can salsa in the fall so we would definitely classify our garden as a ‘ salsa garden ‘.  In addition to salsa, we have plans to can the following:

  • tomatoes
  • tomato juice, or as well like to call it: Bloody Mary Mix. It was amazing and SO much better than store bought mix.
  • tomato, onion & pepper mix for pastas and such
  • pasta sauce

Vegetable Garden 2017

Here is a list of everything we planted this year. I provided links where I could in case you’d like to know more about the plants.

Pepper Plants

Tomato Plants


In the past, I have done very poorly with my basil. Terry gave us tips on how to harvest the basil without killing off the stems. This mens instead of taking the stem off the plant, simply cut it off and leave part of the stem so that it has a chance to grow back! We also planted directly into the ground this year rather than pots as in previous years.

Terry also suggested planting the rosemary into a pot that we can take indoors, as it’s a slow-growing plant, especially in this climate.

We’re really excited about our garden choices this year!

Do you plant a garden? What are your favorite garden plants?





  1. Sharon

    May 28, 2017 at 10:38 am

    You are quite the gardener! We are moving this summer to a house with a yard and a little garden box already in place, so I’m hoping to grow some good stuff there!

    1. Duster

      May 28, 2017 at 6:08 pm

      Thanks so much! It’s so fun once all the hard work of prepping the soil, etc. is done. Luckily, Dusty doesn’t mind that part of gardening :). Good luck with your garden!

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