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Giveaway: Project F.A.R.M. Marvin’s Garden

Congratulations to Robin and Marvin Blitchock, of Marvin’s Garden, on their recent induction to Project F.A.R.M (First-class American Rural Made).


When Robin, an avid gardener, and her husband Marvin, a welder for 30 years, began working on their passions at home, Marvin’s Garden was born. They have had fabulous success taking custom orders from farmers’ markets, word-of-mouth, and boutiques for handmade iron trellises, arbors, and ornaments.




Here’s one of their lovely creations, the beautiful Twig Wreath with Bird. Can’t you just see this sitting picturesquely on the outside wall of your patio or above your bed or fireplace? You might be able to do just that because …


Robin and Marvin are giving it away!!!!!

To be entered in our giveaway to win this beautiful iron wreath, just tell me a bit about what you’ve planted this year in your garden and how it’s going—that’s it!

We’ll put your name in a hat and pull out a winner this time next week. Stay tuned!

  1. Mary Beth Schwarz says:

    The tomatoes are surviving but will not bear again until we get cooler temperatures. Lavender seems to love the heat and it will be even more beautiful with the autumn rains. What lovely art and fences Marvin’s Gardens has! Mary Beth

  2. Wanda Sue Aldridge says:

    I didn’t get a garden planted this year, but may get some pumpkins planted this week!

  3. Cheryl C says:

    Oh, those are beautiful! This year I planted a butterfly garden with all perennials native to this area. The rabbits decided they really love the Meadow Blazing Stars and have eaten those all the way to the ground. I’m hoping they’ll survive and come back next summer. The butterfly milkweed is blooming now and everything else looks pretty good. I also hope to plant some Balsam Fir and a Tamarack tree before winter.

  4. Laurie Dimino says:

    This year I planted tomatoes, cucumbers , lettuce, sweet banana peppers, zucchini, broccoli, snow peas, and basil. Believe it or not the zucchini did not do too well, between, our crazy weather and the squash bugs. The cucumbers are flourishing- I’ve already canned 8 pints of dill pickles, and everyday that I go out to the garden, there are just MORE cucumbers. Tomatoes seem to be doing OK. not great. We have harvested a few delicious ones so far, and there are many more green waiting to ripen. We normally don’t get our huge tomato harvest until later in August here in New York. Keeping our fingers crossed.
    The flower gardens are blooming like crazy, and I was even blessed with MANY volunteer sunflowers, dropped everywhere by our feathered friends this past winter as they enjoyed my feeders. Its a gift from nature for sure!
    I would love to own this beautiful iron wreath with the cardinal on it- one of my favorite birds!!

  5. Alice - Farmgirl #12 says:

    Lovely creations! I live in a townhouse, so I don’t have a plot of land to grow my own veggies, but I planted some lovely Morning Glorys and Cosmos in a large, decorative container on my deck. No flowers have bloomed yet, but it’s lush and full and the Morning Glory has created vines everywhere!

  6. NancyB says:

    I am in the process of re-landscaping my backyard…the older I get the more need I have for a shady spot…so I did not plant a ‘full garden’ this year. Of course, made sure I had every herb I could get my hands on and they are doing good…love walking through my yard and ‘petting’ them and getting a whiff of their scent! Several tomatoes of course…yellow pear are plucked as soon as ripe. Others are getting close! What is better than eating a tomato right off the vine (in a shady part of the yard)!?!

  7. Nancy Dennis says:

    I don’t have a garden this year but enjoy going to the farmers mkt for fresh vegetables grown local

  8. EJ says:

    We planted lots of heirloom tomatoes this year, along with some hot peppers and herbs. We have a clematis in front climbing up one of Marvin’s smaller teepee style trellises — it is gorgeous. That’s surrounded by lavender and liatris and irises.

  9. melody says:

    My garden is my sanctuary… enjoyed being on the Open Gate Garden tour this year. Lots of work and I’m happy it’s over but a great overall experience. I’m not a vegetable gardener, but love the beauty of flowers, shrubs and fruit trees.

  10. Cathy R says:

    Beautiful creations! What a great giveaway! I enjoy growing a variety of plants and flowers, have lettuce, onions, broccoli, brussel sprouts, potatoes, french green beans, corn, pickling, lemon and burpless cucumbers and three kinds of tomatoes. And lots of herbs and flowers growing along the fence that protects everything! Blessings from the hills of Orofino, Cathy

  11. Heidi young says:

    The iron work is beautiful!!! Our garden is a bit out of control this year… We planted too much!!! Cukes, pickling cukes, peppers, strawberries (which arent doing well!! ), tomatoes like Crazy and squash and green beans ( my girls favorite, they pick them right off of the plant and munch them!!) the harvest will be great!! Can’t wait!!!

  12. Deborah Granay says:

    Every year’s garden is a new experience. Last year there was a drought, heat and $80 a month water bills.
    This year my neighbors can thank my sister and I because we rigged up rainbarrel irrigation in case of a drought. We have had abundant rain! We are not storing the water in the rain barrels but sending the water directly to the soaker hoses thorughout the 2,000 sq. ft. vegetable and herb garden. The water is stored in the ground. Since our soil has a tremendous ability to absorb water and retain it, even when it is hot and dry it has worked out great.
    The early garden of rasishes peas and lettuce was really productive this year.
    We have enjoyed abundant bush green beans. Now the pole beans are coming in and the second planting of green beans is blooming, too. The cucumbers have been abundant and I have been putting up dill pickles. I dug potatoes, onions, garlic and carrots in July. All look great. Collards and kale are still producing and I have kept the cabbage worms at bay. The summer squash has been slow to develop but I picked my first one yesterday along with the first zucchini. I planted my heirloom tomatoes late as usual and they are starting to turn color now. I can’t wait to eat a warm juicy tomato from the garden.
    Now I’m replanting carrots and will replant collards,peas and garlic in the fall.

  13. Susie Strickler says:

    My husband always took care of the garden and now that I am retired I am trying my hand at it. For many years I could not even get a seed to emerge. Imagine my surprise, when last year the first little cotyledons poked up and I ended up with a glorious bed of six foot sunflowers! And, it happened again this year. Sunflowers are near and dear to my heart as they make me feel closer to my mom. Needless to say, I am hooked and the quest is on to grow more plant and vegetables.

  14. Jennifer Memolo says:

    Cukes,maters & peppers…and ‘Compost Surprise’…what’s compost surprise? It’s what you get when last season’s plantings don’t breakdown in the compost….This year my ‘surprises’ are squash, more maters, parsley and a couple of things yet to be identified.:-) Love Gardening!

  15. TBlitchok says:

    Planted sweet peas in anticipation of our first grandchild Zoe in August. Hopefully they will be in full bloom when she arrives. We also planted two window boxes at the front of the house with asparagus fern, vinca, boston fern and impatiens. .

  16. Laurie Scott says:

    So beautiful Robin and Marvin. What I did this year was, I took a sweet potato rooted it in the house and then planted it my potato box (raised bed) and I had a huge vine growing. Last week I dug around plant the plant and had so many tubers that became single sweet potatoes. I also have tomato, bell pepper. I also grew cukes, squash used them up. I also have flowers in the front yard and backyard. My grapefruit and orange trees that are young are doing very well also.

  17. shawna matos says:

    This year we put in a raised bed for tomatoes and basil. We also have some green onions, some herbs in a galvanized bucket and rhubarb. Everything is in raised beds as we tried a huge garden a couple of years ago and lost most of it to gophers. My daughter and I made rhubarb strawberry jam and some blueberry rhubarb jam. We have a u-pick hydroponic strawberry farm and a u-pick blueberry farm nearby that we always go to as soon as the berries are ripe. Next year we are going to add a few more raised beds so we can add to the garden.

  18. Linda Radziminski says:

    I have mostly planted herbs like basil, rosemary,mints,lavender, parsley and even chamomile . I recently got a dehydrator so I will be drying alot. I plan to give Christmas gifts of herbs in containers with a recipe to go with each one.

  19. Debby Hodges says:

    Last year I planted hollyhocks in a planter in our backyard in Greenville, NC. Of course, they don’t bloom until the second year. The pot is not nearly large enough, but I did get some gorgeous blooms this year.

    I am lucky that my husband owns a farm in the next county. We always have to deal with the extremes in weather – too hot, too much rain or none. After replanting about three times, we got wonderful tomatoes, green bean, squash, cucumbers, etc. I was happy we actually had watermelons this year – they are delicious. My husband finally got to plant the vintage beans – yard peas. They are currently blooming – he has “invented” the easiest and yummy recipte for cooking them. The peas are a treat – can’t wait to try them. My friend, Kathy, gave us some peas from the mountains – October peas. They are, also, blooming.

  20. Danni says:

    I have been canning green beans and beets are on the agenda for this weekend. Peach jam will be coming soon! I love all the fresh fruits and veggies and canning them for the winter!~

  21. Alex says:

    I planted gladioli, wild flowers from seeds, Purple Queen Zinna and white one. Morning glory pop up everywhere but I only let the one near the mail box and garden fence to survive. There are plenty of volunteer Thai and sweet basil, lemon verbena, lavender, lemon balm grow like weed. I added new cecile Burn Rose, artichokes, sunflower, sweet peas, dandelion, egg plants, sweet pepper cherries, butterfly flowers, Japanese Wax leaves, salad, moss roses, petunia, and rocket arugula. Double delight rose is the newest rose. I want the fragrance Pink Peace rose but haven’t find it yet. There’s always something bloom at the house or the garden.
    The fragrant is delightful through spring to Fall. Lemongrass and elderberry grow huge! I need sweetheart cherry or 4 in 1 cherries tree to complete the fruits tree list.
    There will be no fruit except for shelter apple tree for me as well as people that I know in my state. Very sad.

  22. Barb K says:

    I plant Roses and they are doing just fine. Also I like to plant wild flowers. They sometimes take a while to bloom but when they do it makes the garden look so pretty.

  23. Marquita Jordan says:

    Planted tomatoes in our little patch afte many
    Years without our country garden ( moved into town). And it’s doing pretty good to my surprise.

  24. Linda Wilson says:

    This is beautiful! I grow southeastern natives in my garden and they are doing well. My garden junk consists of nature themed items and natural materials to go with the wildflowers and this beautiful wreath would fit in PERFECTLY!

  25. CJ Armstrong says:

    Unfortunately, I have not planted anything new this year and we didn’t plant a vegetable garden. We are in such a severe drought situation with irrigation water at a premium and to be shut off about six weeks early that we decided not to plant and just do our best to keep our trees, lawn, flowers, etc. alive. It has been a huge challenge!

    I did want to just say that those metal art pieces are just wonderful and very creative. Anyone would be fortunate to have a piece to enhance their garden or patio!
    Beautiful work!

  26. Linda Killian says:

    I have one remaining tomato and six green peppers left trying to eke out the summer sun. You see, it is our off-season here in Florida. Not a lot grows successfully with all of the rain (don’t hate) and hot sun. Everything is upside down here. We grow best in the winter.

    I love this artwork. I have visions dancing in my head of that railing for my next house! Great work!

  27. Linda Aragon says:

    You are beautiful metal workers! My brother has been a metal sculptor and he is now a beautiful hand-made kitchen knife maker. A true artisan like you two are.
    I planted squash, basil, lettuce and tomatoes, and I have a small but productive patch of strawberries that has been yielding quite a few strawberries. But my favorite thing that I planted this year are my carrots. I am so amazed by them. Perhaps because I am still a beginning gardener. But I cannot believe that something as small as a coffee ground goes into the soil, it seems to reluctantly emerge, it grows slowly but steadily and yet MYSTERIOUSLY!!! I cannot see what is happening underground. Then, like a magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat, I can yank out a lovely, bright orange, sweet, jewel from the darkness below. I will never again see the humble carrot as anything but a miracle of nature 😉

  28. Eileen Stone says:

    My garden is a spiritual appendage.

  29. Linda Ralston says:

    I will admit to not having much of a green thumb, but I keep trying!
    I planted a garden (from seed) behind the gym I work out at in town. To identify the plants, I used cute little popsicle sticks I had glued together like a cross for an art project at church.
    Another member of the gym put some manure on top of my plantings (not realizing I had planted!). She had no idea what the crosses were for and tossed them aside. My mystery garden is producing a lot of plants, I’m just not too sure what they are!

  30. bobbie Calgaro says:

    My garden is hilarious. We call it the jungle. It is a mix of three Grow boxes and a small plot. Our zucchini died. The watermelon has taken over. (It’s the watermelon that ate New York City, well maybe only Clemmons, NC.)The cucumbers are outrageous. My neighbors fear to see me come with more. We also have a cantaloupe, tomatoes, a pepper plant and lots of basil. Crazy fun for two people who never thought they’d garden. It all tastes so good. This garden and the Produce Box out of Raleigh are making sure we eat our veggies this summer. Yeah.

  31. amanda moore says:

    I haven’t had much time for a personal garden other than my flowers. However, my mom who lives in the country insisted she have hers. So she has tomatoes, peppers, green beans and squash. What isn’t being eaten by the grasshoppers is delicious. This is a very small garden compared to the years past but it gives her some normalcy to her life as she struggles everyday just to exist with terminal stage 4 lung cancer. We planted the garden right outside her Window so she can see it. She turns 70 on July 28th and we are going to decorate and celebrate another birthday with our mom.

  32. Diane Cates says:

    My husband and I always plant a large garden , but this year all the kids(grown with children of thier own) planted a gigantic family garden together , it is doing great! Corn is getting real close to being ready, have already canned 40 qts of green beans! Salsa tomorrow. ! How I love to watch the garden grow, and even more , to reap the bountiful harvest that God has provided! Good luck to each one of you , both in the garden and in the drawing for this lovely wreath ! I know I want to win it !

  33. Chrissy says:

    Such lovely ironwork! I have had some really good green beans, once I fenced them off from those “wascally wabbitts” and the tomatoes look great, just not ripening yet. And this year, my front yard perennial flowers looked more like the English cottage style I’ve been trying to acheive.

  34. caroline McClellan says:

    My perennials looks great this year but once again I’ve killed off my zucchini. Keeping the farmer’s market in business, I

  35. joyce says:

    We didn’t plant much this year, only tomatoes, peppers, and a few pumpkins. So far, we have gotten a few tomatoes and the pumpkins are blooming, but the peppers are a bust. Too much rain this year I guess.

  36. Karen Marsh says:

    We’ve been picking quarts and quarts of raspberries and I’ve been busy making pies for our family reunion next week to celebrate my Mom’s 90th birthday.
    Besides the raspberries, we have blueberries, all kinds of baby lettuce and greens, string beans, tomatoes, corn, watermelon, butternut squash, just harvested the garlic (yum). Most of it is coming along fine but a little late because we got deluged with rain in June and early July. The garden almost drowned!

  37. Lani kyea says:

    Due to the severe drouth we are experiencing (so far this year we have had a little less than 3 inchs of moisture and well is slow to recover now after 7 years of dry dry dry) I have only planted my heirloom beans and potatoes to have seed for next year and some food for this year….counting on my neighbor to trade for squash.

  38. Sounds wonderful! Good luck for our wreath!

  39. Janie Isham says:

    We recently purchased a 100 year old home on a triple lot in our town. The best part is having twice the yard to plant in. I have an herb garden with rosemary,basil, oregano, cilantro (my favorite) , parsely and thyme. In my kitchen garden I have eggplant, leeks, tomatoes ( a couple of heirlooms), cabbage, lettuce, radishes, carrots, green beans and a variety of squash. My rhubarb is almost done, but managed to can up quite a bit and give some to friends. We have a found our best way to mulch and keep weeds to a minimum is to layer 3-4 sheets of newspaper wetted down with water and covered with seveal inches of lawn clippings.
    I have been a MJ “farmgirl” for four years. We have our first flock of hens, a mix of breeds, Buff Orpington, Lacy Wyanotte, Ameracaunas and a barred rock. They are so fun and getting big enough to start laying soon. I wouold love to witn this wtreath as we have only recently been seeing cardinals in our yard altjough we have been tryin gto lure them for several years.My husband and I are avid birdwatchers!

    • We love the birds too Janie, and I hand paint each one that adorns everything we make. Our most popular sellers are Cardinals, Hummingbirds, Bluebirds, Goldfinches & Chickadees, but I love to paint them all! Best of luck for the wreath!

  40. Sabrena Orr says:

    Each spring we plant a large garden for our family of five! Filled with tomatos, zuchini, beets, lettuce, carrots, sugar peas, green beans, onions, cauliflower and rhubard; brightened up with marigolds and nasturiams and spiced with cilantro, dill, chives, oregano, basil, and parsley…our garden keeps us busy! My girls (Buff Orpingtons, Rhode Island Reds and Barred Rocks) are banished from the garden until Fall when they are let back in and scratch to their hearts content! I LOVE Marvin’s Gardens artwork. It is truly beautiful and original!

  41. Lisa A says:

    These sculptures are gorgeous!! We have a large patch of sweet corn in one garden, then in the second garden the usual tomatoes, peppers, onions, carrots, peas, potatoes, green beans and herbs.

  42. Valerie Schwartz says:

    Summer in Texas is not easy but I have 3 raised beds and the tomatoes and peppers like the heat. I also have a cherry tomato in a pot and that’s happy. Otherwise, nothing but perennials that like heat and sun!

  43. Jennifer B says:

    Gardening on the North Mountain by the Bay of Fundy in Nova Scotia brings a mismatch of weather and temperatures, but my gardens are flourishing this year 🙂 Lettuce, spinach, kale, tomatoes, bush and pole beans, peas, onions, cabbage, cauliflower, pumpkins, summer and winter squash, potatoes….and the usual mixture of herbs flourishing as well as the wild blackberries and raspberries. The apple and pear trees do not seem to be doing much this year fruit wise through 🙁

  44. Here in the desert southwest we do most of our gardening in the winter, but I am growing two kinds of hot peppers, along with zucchini and yellow summer squash, which I now hand-fertilize due to the drop in the bee population. I’ve cut the tomatoes back to about a foot high, since they won’t set fruit in these high temperatures, but they’ll start producing again when it cools off. Herbs are doing well, and I’m going to be making a big batch of basil pesto this week to put in the freezer. The Meyer lemon tree is healthy but seems to be having an off-year, fruitwise, but the little potted kumquat had lots of blossoms last week and now I can see tiny fruits starting!

  45. Jan says:

    I don’t have room for a real vegetable garden, but do have lots of flower beds. This year I found a spot to plant 3 tomato plants and a green pepper. The tomatoes are growing like crazy and the green peppers are rotten because of all our rain. Would love to win this draw.

  46. Dee Szolomayer says:

    We started our raised bed garden in a new location this year. The cucumbers have become pickles with more jars to fill. Beans are tall but have yet to see pods, oh well it’s pretty. I should have a good supply of potatoes. Raspberries were yummy but not enough for jam this year. Strawberries and Rhubarb have been made into yummy desserts or just frozen. The red and yellow bell peppers are turning beautiful colors along with the grapes. The wreath would be a welcome addition to our garden.

  47. Linda Lovett says:

    I live in an area that is all sand and sugar sand hills, so I planted 3 types of tomatoes in a large syrup tub so I could control the soil. They were growing well and then developed black spots on the bottoms of the tomatoes. I went on line and googled the problem and found out they had bottom end stem rot. The solution? More calcium. I added Oyster Shell (borrowed from my Dixie Chicks) and Epsom Salts as instructed, removed the damaged tomatoes and voila! new tomatoes are growing with no damage to the ends. I live to be outdoors. Love your art work.

  48. Terry Steinmetz says:

    My garden is finally doing better since we finally got some rain–4&1/2″ so far! But to be fair, my hubby & I work together on it. We are just digging some yukon golds & they are delicious. The cukes are all in blossom. The corn is tasseling. Enjoying lots of salads with Cos & red leaf lettuces. Guess we will have plenty to can & freeze again this year. The garden is my haven for peace in a sometimes hectic world that we live in here. I loved the iron works you pictured! The tree hit me as the most exciting right now as I am working on our family tree with my son. Thanks for sharing!

  49. Jan says:

    Our tomatoes are starting to turn! I am harvesting lovely Swiss chard and many different types of leaf lettuce. I feel a lovely wilted salad coming on….Cucumbers are getting close! I just made my fourth batch of rhubarb jam. Oh, yes! The zucs are popping and growing as we speak…Buttercup squash is starting to form. I have a great recipe for squash soup with shrimp that is wonderful during the fall. Something about those two just go together…
    Learning how to craft metal work has always been on my bucket list. Nice work, Marvin’s Garden!

  50. marsha spina says:

    I don’t have a large yard but pots work quite well for tomato’s, squash, bush beans and don’t forget the fresh herbs. I never harvest enough to can or freeze but enjoy them through the summer. I have a perfect place for the beautiful wreath….Hoping to win but happy for whom ever does…

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WINNER: Project F.A.R.M. Rocking GT Designs

And now, for the winner of our giveaway announcing the newly added seller to Project F.A.R.M., Tammy Trayer, of Rocking GT Designs!

What fun fact do both Tammy and I have in common?

Straight from her blog: “For 8 1/2 months we lived in the wall tent and built our home. It was an experience and an adventure like no other for us all and not one of us would have traded the experience for ANYTHING!”

While working as a forest ranger in the Selway-Bitteroot Wilderness in the ’70s, I lived in a wall-tent year round. Also, an experience I’d never trade!

So who is our winner?


Cheryl Schuh said:

“You are both adventurous outdoor women that have both braved life in a tent in Idaho.”

Congratulations Cheryl!

Keep your eyes on your inbox for an e-mail from the farm, coming soon! 🙂

  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Your lucky day Cheryl! Congratulations!

  2. Cheryl Schuh says:

    Wow! I almost missed this. Had to look twice to make sure that was my name. Excited!!

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  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Cherries from the Northwest! A true sign that Summer is ripening up. My Grandma had a cherry tree in the backyard of their farm in rural Indiana. Every summer when we would go and stay for a few weeks, the cherries would be ripe and Grandma would make delicious cheery pies on the big black woodstove in the kitchen. I remember me and my brother and sisters taking on the task of gathering the cherries with that cool little wooden ladder made perfect for getting into the tree.

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