My Foray Into Food Storage

A regular gal learning about Food Storage, Home Cooking, Canning, Gardening, and more!

I’m Goin’ On A Treasure Hunt! Look At What I Found!


Trash and rocks.  Fun, huh?  What kind of treasure hunt yields trash and rocks?  Gardening.  At least in the beginning.  As I was preparing the planting bed in my front yard, I found all sorts of “treasure.”  Look and see!



And more treasure!

And more treasure!



I don’t think the builder did a very good job cleaning up the work-site around my house.  My house is 9 years old, and I dig up something every time I clean up that bed.


On a happier note, I found some other treasures.  I discovered the best one while I was weeding that same planting bed.  As I was working, I smelled something intoxicating!  Something very close to honeysuckle, but there was no honeysuckle nearby.  I was next to a bush the former owners had planted in the bed.  When we moved it, it was not doing very well.  It had very few leaves and was visibly struggling.  It was being overrun by some native flowers which were taking over the entire planting bed.  It took several hours of work, but I finally rid the bed of them early last year.  The bush looked significantly better by the end of the season, but I wasn’t sure it was going to make it.



Look at those blossoms! They smell even better than they look!


When I took a closer look at it today, I noticed that it had blossoms.  Then I noticed the tag from the nursery was still attached near the base of the tree.  I was concerned that the string attaching it to the trunk would eventually hurt the bush, so I removed it.  When I turned it over, I found the words “Valencia Orange.”  I have an orange tree!   And to think, I wanted to remove the bush, so I could plant a fruit tree.  Good thing I didn’t.  The blossoms on the tree smell divine.  I’m tempted to sit outside and just smell the tree.


Another surprise?  My peach tree, which I planted a year ago, is bearing fruit!  I can’t wait until harvest time!





Now, you may be wondering why was I weeding my planting bed.  (Okay, you probably weren’t wondering, but I thought it was a good segue.)  I bought a couple of plants this morning, and I wanted to get them in the ground asap.  The weather was perfect (low 70s), and I had the time today.


2 tomato plants, 1 eggplant, 1 zucchini, and 1 spaghetti squash.

2 tomato plants, 1 eggplant, 1 zucchini, and 1 spaghetti squash.


I started planting too late last year.  Living in Southern California, we are blessed with a long growing season, but if you start your plants too late, you may not get as much fruit/veggies from them.  That’s what happened to me.  So, I’m starting early.  I planted 2 tomato plants, 1 eggplant plant, 1 zucchini plant, and 1 spaghetti squash plant.  Hopefully, they’ll thrive, and I’ll have a huge harvest.  I’m not a super experienced gardener, so I can’t promise I’ll actually have anything at the end of the season, but I promise that I’ll keep you posted.


Are you gardening this year?  What are you planting? 

How do you garden?  Raised beds, containers, in a greenhouse, or in the ground?



Author: Laurie Nguyen

I am a happily married, stay at home mom with four sons, ages 24, 22, 18, and 14. I'm not a professional blogger, and I'm certainly not a foodie or a chef. But I like food, so I think I'm qualified to write about my own life experience with food. Want to be a little more prepared for the unexpected? Check out my Food Storage Blog, Have a question about Food Storage? Email me:

22 thoughts on “I’m Goin’ On A Treasure Hunt! Look At What I Found!

  1. Wow an orange tree, how cool is that and look at your peaches. You must really have a green thumb. Not me but I still try every year.


    • The thing is, I don’t have a green thumb. I have automatic sprinklers which keep everything alive. I joke that the only reason my kids are alive is that they tell me when they’re hungry and thirsty. Plants don’t speak (at least not in a way I can hear).


  2. First I thought “Oh! Mock orange!” and felt a pang of jealousy (I’ve been dying to add a mock orange to my yard) but noooo, a REAL orange!! Oh, southern California how I miss you so!! I miss the heat of Murrieta Valley and I miss fresh lemonade from the giant tree in my Aunt’s front yard and the avocados and the oranges and mmmm. the smell of orange blossoms. And every year we’d make peach pie and jam from our little bitty peach tree that just burst with fruit! (ever make jam in a bread machine? I recently learned that it is much easier than stovetop!)
    I’m green with envy that you’re starting your planting season so early! I just received a bareroot for a daylily and then it snowed for two days! Enjoy that weather!


    • I’ve never tried it in a bread machine. It is easy? I’ve seen these jam makers, but I’ve never minded doing it on the stove. 🙂

      The weather here truly is beautiful. I grew up on the east coast with cold, ice, and snow. I don’t miss it. Not in the least. I live about an hour from snow, so I can visit it if I want to.

      Thanks for stopping by my blog today!


  3. I just posted an update on our garden too! Here in South Carolina we are still expecting a low in the 30s next week so we haven’t planted yet. I have blossoms on my peach tree but we have yet to ever get peaches. It is a donut peach tree and for some reason either something or someone gets the peaches before us or they just stop growing. Pears and apples, that is another story. We have more of those than we know what to do with! My three boys can go through five pears each just while playing outside for a couple hours….I see the cores all over! Good luck with your garden.


    • Ooh! Pears and apples! I planted an apple tree (one that doesn’t need a second one for pollination), but I don’t know if I’ll get apples this year. It only had a couple of blossoms.


  4. Our sub-division is full of fruitless pear trees… I wish they would have accidentally given me one that actually produced fruit! My son and I usually grow a tomato plant every year, but this year we are doing a couple of jalapeno and one bell pepper 🙂 Should be fun!


  5. Hi Laurie, as you’re heading into spring we’re slipping into autumn, but the young lemon, lime and grapefruit trees I planted a few months ago have done well and I look forward to smelling that beautiful blossom next year. Love your blog by the way! Best wishes Deb


  6. I used to have a garden, about one acre, but now live in town. My “plants” now are an aloe vera and some mint that may or may not keep growing this summer, after I repot it. I’m hoping to have an indoor herb garden, at least, but would love to try some veggies just to see if they will grow indoors.
    Your zucchini should produce enough to feed half the state, but I’m not sure about the rest. Since I live in Kentucky we have a different weather pattern, but one thing I have noticed everywhere is that one squash of any type will grow enough to last a lifetime. Good luck.


  7. The hubby and I are going to be plating our first garden this year. We are starting everything with seeds, (heirlooms). We are hoping for a nice big garden so I can can or freeze all the extra. We live in Missouri and the nights are still in the 20’s/30’s at night so we haven’t set anything out yet. It would be so wonderful to live somewhere warm enough for an orange tree. Would love, love, love to have a lemon tree.


  8. I agree with you about the smell of the orange tree. I have small orange trees and 1 lemon tree in my garden and the fragrance is magic. I pick up the orange tree flowers from the ground and I put them in small bowls inside the house, the smell is divine 🙂


  9. I’m a little bit behind getting my veggies in the ground this year (although we did plant some pansies amongst the iris earlier this week). I’m gardening in a new spot and haven’t finished preparing it. Hopefully I’ll be ready to plant by the end of the week. Happy harvesting! – Fawn


  10. I’ll have to settle for my mock orange, which I love. Here in Indiana, can’t see a orange tree living..glad for you that you didn’t pull it out, enjoy.


  11. I’m about to do gardening too. As soon as my garden is ready for it and the construction site is gone. 🙂 But I’m planning on using raised garden beds, made out of wood. Something that is used a lot in urban gardening. And I’m planning on planting some fruit trees. I have already two plum trees and an “antique” apple tree, all from the previous owner. Too bad I don’t live in San Diego anymore, cause Orange trees don’t make it here in Switzerland…enjoy your oranges! 🙂


  12. This sounds exciting. In WI I still have snow on the ground and can’t see my garden yet. I always plant garlic (in the fall) tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet corn, broccoli, milo and sunflowers. I may add brushel sprouts.


  13. Pingback: My March Preps: You Get To Hold ME Accountable! | My Foray Into Food Storage

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