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Guest Feature: Top Tips and a Garden Tour by Just Plant Fabulous!

Join us as we find out more about this Instagrammer's personal garden and her tips for making your thumb a little greener!

colorful garden veggies in a bowl

With the growing season still in full swing, we're enjoying seeing all of the veggies and herbs that our friend Kerri from Just Plant Fabulous is posting and sharing!

Kerri's Just Plant Fabulous's IG page is chock full of colorful and beautifully curated garden pics as well as mouthwatering vegan recipe inspo!

Her plant-based food and garden-centered Instagram feed has something for both gardening enthusiasts and foodies alike!

We were fortunate to try some of Kerri's amazing produce and pickles and just had to put together a post featuring her terrific bounty!

tomatoes and cucumber

We figured we had a lot to learn and it was time to learn from the best!

We put together some of our questions for Kerri, the brilliant gardener, creator and curator of Just Plant Fabulous!

Read on to hear about Kerri and her gardening that is the basis and inspiration for her vegan Instagram feed- Just Plant Fabulous!

My Kidz Bookshelf: When did you get into gardening?

Just Plant Fabulous: When I was a little girl, I helped my grandmother in the garden all the time. I enjoyed spending time with her and learning the things she was teaching me.

We planted vegetables and flowers and tended to them, and pruned shrubs and trees.

flowering plants in pots in back yard

I guess I tucked all that I learned away, because as an adult I have pretty natural gardening skills, even after taking a break from it through college, grad school and early in my career.

flowering plants in back yard

I returned to gardening in 1999, when I moved to the northwest part of Washington State, to a place called Whidbey Island. It’s an area with lush vegetation and a perfect climate for growing.
The stunnning views from Whidbey Island! - Photo Credit:

The house we bought had three small planter boxes and I immediately filled them with vegetables of all kinds, many I had never grown before, like corn on the cob!

fresh vegetables in a bowl

I had great success growing all kinds of things, and learned to care for my flowering shrubs, perennials and annual gardens.

hostas and bird bath in garden

I started canning jams, salsa and sauces, and there was no going back for me!

homemade pickles in jars

MKB: What is growing in your garden right now?

JPF: In addition to a large yard full of annual and perennial flowers, flowering shrubs and trees, I'm also growing vegetables and herbs in raised beds and one area right in the ground.

plants in raised bed

In my herb beds I am growing basil, cilantro, parsley, a few kinds of mint, dill, chives, rosemary, sage, thyme, marjoram, and lemon balm.

basil and other herbs in raised bed on next to house

In my garden beds I am growing a few different kinds of lettuces, two types of kale, rainbow chard, quite a few varieties of tomatoes, two varieties of cucumbers, zucchini, green bell peppers, broccoli, purple cauliflower, radishes and green beans.

Just Plant Fabulous's Kerri poses by her cauliflower
Kerri from Just Plant Fabulous next to her cauliflower in the raised bed!

MKB: Do you have a couple of hot tips or advice for beginning gardeners?

JPF: My best advice would be to grow things you enjoy eating! You will be more likely to tend to your garden if you are growing things you get to eat and really enjoy!

black dog laying down in the garden
Mr. Pretzels enjoys spending time in the garden!

Container gardens work if you don't have a lot of space, but because there is limited room for root growth, they need to be watered more often and paid careful attention to.

MKB: Do you have any favorite gardening tools or products that you can't live without or that make your gardening life easier?

JFP: We know plants can't grow without water and sunlight, and although we can't control the sun, I can control the water!

reaching up for a cucumber in an arch

My favorite garden tool is probably the nozzle I use on my hose.

It's the style that has a dial and allows you to choose the type of water flow you like.

  • I use the “soaker” mode when things are really dry and need heavy watering, and to fill my birdbath!

  • I use the “shower” mode when I am watering things more carefully and gently, like flower pots and tender lettuces.

  • I will use “full” mode when I'm reaching plants and shrubs further away, and “mist” mode when I want to give hot wilting leaves and flowers a nice cooling mist to help them recover form scorching heat.

  • I use the "flat mode," which is a wide, light spray, to give everything in my garden a "shower" after soaking all their roots! Leaves take in water and I really believe it helps my plants grow even bigger and stronger!!

  • And I use “jet”mode when I'm all done in the evening to blast my dirty gardener hands and fingernails!

I probably don't fertilize as often as many gardeners because I use a very rich compost made from my plant-based food scraps and get great results!

When I do fertilize I always choose an organic fertilizer like this one!

As far as “actual” tools, I use a spade when I'm planting seedlings into my raised vegetable beds, or potting flowers, but for everything else I like to literally dig-in and get my hands dirty!

small eggplant in hand

"There’s something so satisfying about working with my hands in the garden…and I always have “jet” mode on my hose!"

For my birthday this year, my parents gave me a small rolling garden seat, which I will be using to keep the weeds around the perimeter of my yard at bay!

It’s new and I can’t wait to try it out! I think it will become indispensable!

rolling garden seat

MKB: What has been your favorite thing to grow this year?

JPF: This year’s cucumber arch has been really fun!!!

It was somewhat experimental, but the cucumber seedlings grew and took right to it.

My arch is made of a hog fence panel turned vertical! Here is a link to what I actually used. It's durable and I was able to purchase it locally!

garden arch with cucumber plants
This garden arch has been terrific for growing cucumbers!

For the last four weeks or so, I have been getting 9 to 15 cucumbers a day!!!

pickles and peppers in a tray

I grew two varieties, Sumter cucumbers, which are more traditional looking, darker-skin cucumbers, and Kirby cucumbers, which are the shorter, somewhat lighter green cucumbers.

homemade pickles in jars

They are also called pickling cucumbers because of their small size, and those are the ones I use to make my pickles!

MKB: Thank you so much to Just Plant Fabulous for taking the time to share her top tips and tour her garden with us! We really enjoyed getting to see her gorgeous garden and feature her here at My Kidz Bookshelf!

Be sure to visit and follow Kerri @Just Plant Fabulous to see what she's been growing and her kitchen creations!

Make sure you Pin this post so you can return to it later for these great tips and fabulous gardening inspiration!


Stay tuned for Just Plant Fabulous's amazing "Besto Pesto Recipe" coming up in our next blog post!!



Have a budding gardener in the house? Here are some wonderful picture books that are perfect choices to feed that outdoor planting enthusiasm!

Gardening books for kids

1. / 2. / 3. / 4. / 5. / 6. / 7. / 8. / 9.


We hope you enjoyed reading this guest post featuring Just Plant Fabulous's garden tips and tour!

Happy Gardening!

April & Cenzia


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My Kidz Bookshelf
My Kidz Bookshelf
Aug 30, 2020

Hi Vonsamson43!

Thank you so much for reading and commenting! Kerri will be delighted to hear how much a fellow gardener enjoyed the post! We will certainly pass along your kind words!

You have deer, we have rabbits! I think we had about three cucumbers, one zucchini and a whopping six cherry tomatoes!

Perhaps next year we'll make the effort of putting up some netting/small fencing to keep Peter Rabbit and his closest friends out of our raised bed!

Do keep an eye out for upcoming posts featuring Kerri and Just Plant Fabulous! We are absolutely planning on featuring her in the future!

:) April


Aug 29, 2020

I enjoyed this post immensely!! What a gorgeous, gorgeous garden. EVERYTHING LOOKS SO DELECTABLE! The deer & all the ground critters have enjoyed the fruits of my labor, but I guess Mother Nature wants some of us to experience these woes as a learning process----possibly to build my character? My compliments to this fine gardener & I hope she is featured again on your site. She has provided me with a vision of beauty during a very stressful time. Thank you.

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