Friday, July 3, 2015

Garden Update.

The garden went in the week before Mother's Day.  We took a risk by planting so early, but thankfully we didn't get another hard frost.  We tried a garden plan that spaced things out a lot wider this year, since every other year it got overgrown and we let the weeds take over.  This year we placed the tomato plants a full 4 feet apart in every direction, and left a large center area for pumpkin and squash.  The Hubbard squash is creeping in every direction, though, and needs to be pinched off every day or two.  It has 4 or 5 fruits setting.

We also put down sawdust paths this year, and we're farther ahead of the weeds this summer than any year previously!  

So far we've harvested broccoli, yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, banana peppers, lettuce, strawberries, and a few cherry tomatoes that are starting to ripen.  The rest of the tomato plants have tons of green fruit, but none have started to blush yet.

In the foreground are yellow squash and zucchini, with hubbard squash and pie pumpkin directly behind. In front of the yellow squash are three more broccoli plants, since we're eating it as fast as it's growing!  It is so much better than store broccoli.  On the left is Natalie's section (broccoli, cuke & celery) and a few tomato plants.  On the right are mainly bell peppers.  In the distance are three rows of tomatoes of all sorts - beefsteak, roma, cherry.  19 tomato plants in all.  Dad really wants to do a lot of canning this year.
Not pictured above are a few more broccoli plants and two eggplant plants, one of which has its first fruit!

This little dogleg of the garden has Gladys, Theresa's watermelon plant, an heirloom tomato plant, a few cukes and three broccoli plants.

Out back we have another small pumpkin patch (R), and on the left is what's knows as a potato cage - alternating layers of straw and compost, with seed potatoes in each layer of compost.  The plants grow out the sides of the cage, and when it's time to harvest, we just tip the cage over and they all spill out!  Well, that's the theory, anyway...this is the first time we've done it, so we HOPE that's what will happen!

This wonderful corner of color was quite a surprise.  The daylilies came from my sister-in-law last year, and the white lilies must have come from discarded Easter lily bulbs, but I had completely forgotten that I planted them.  It was a real mystery while we were waiting for them to open to see what they'd be!

These came as transplants from another gardening friend - they are called Cleomes.  They're next to the lilies. 

We mulched the whole front slope because Andy was sick of fighting to mow it.  We have to rake all the mulch up and put down a better weed barrier, though.  The front wall is bordered with alternating petunias, snapdragons, and cosmos.  I had envisioned the petunias spreading out and cascading down the wall, but so far they haven't.

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Conor's favorite - the black petunias.

Regina's sunflowers just started to open this week, and this year I put carrots in pots of compost so they wouldn't have to fight through rocky soil to grow.  They're about the thickness of my finger now, so we'll be able to pull some soon!  There's also cosmos, zinnia, and dahlia along the wall.

Finally, the strawberry patch in the middle of the yard.  I have been pinching back the blooms for a month, so hopefully now that I let it go, we'll get some nice fruits!!

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