Hungry Heart

Adventures in healthy living

Potted Bliss


I do not have an ideal yard for planting anything that requires a lot of sun. Our house faces south, so the front gets morning sun and the backyard only gets afternoon sun. Plus, our back is surrounded by trees, only one of which is ours. The middle of the lawn gets a lot of sun but that is about it. The middle of the yard would not be an ideal place for an herb garden. 


There is also not much in the yard that Sadie won’t trample. I have two smashed hydrangea bushes and numerous hostas to prove it.
So my herb garden is relegated to containers on the deck. This year is the largest it has ever been. The pots are taking over the deck!

In the back is the cilantro and the parsley. Then there is a jalapeno, spearmint, and peppermint. In the front is rosemary and thyme.

On the other side of the steps I have more parsley and cilantro, and two basil plants.

Basil, cilantro (back), more basil,  parsley.

Next to the grill I have six more jalapeno plants and some arugula.

The arugula just got planted, but I am hoping it takes off soon!
Finally, I planted my chives in the flower beds next to the deck.

Chives are a perennial, and they get pretty, round purple flowers. I hope they work out well there.

After some gardening and then receiving some expensive news from my chiropractor, I made my favorite summertime pasta salad; Tri-Colore Orzo (courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis).

I only modified the recipe slightly:

  • 1 pound orzo (pasta shaped like rice)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus 1/4 cup
  • 2 cups arugula
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 12 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • juice of 3 lemons
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

I would definitely recommend upping the lemon. The recipe only calls for 3 tablespoons, and I don’t think that is nearly enough. And I always add feta, and I was disappointed to I found out I didn’t have any. It still tasted great. Light and lemony and a little peppery from the arugula. But it was missing the tangy salty bite of the feta, so I will buy some and add it to the leftovers.
What is your favorite summer salad?


  1. Ut oh, I hope everything is OK with your back! You can eat the pretty purple chive flowers, they have a more mild flavor.

  2. Yum, love that salad. One of my other faces is grilled corn, avocado, tomatoes, red or green onion, lemon & fresh oregano. You need another pot for the oregano!

  3. I am loving a new favorite ( though LOVE yours and LaurenMcC’s!) It is using wheatberry and parsley evoo lemon tomato cuke and corn.
    AND dont you know someone who builds awesome dog proof raised vegetable beds? :)

  4. @ridic: My tailbone isn’t worse, just going to take a lot of treatments to fix. Can’t wait until my chives get flowers!

    @Lauren: I forgot about the oregano! I planted some last year but I’m never sure when to use it.

    @janis: I believe you are forgetting about last year when a certain coonhound stood in your raised bed and broke an heirloom tomato plant!

  5. Can’t wait to try and eat some of the flowers off the chives!

    And I love the onion/pineapple pasta salad – my absolute fav! Can you put chives in it to make it greener?!

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