My garden is in full summer swing these days and the developments have been exciting!
I have been watching my tomato plant for some time and finally last Saturday it was time to eat the first one!
It was amazing – so fragrant and full of flavor. We enjoyed it on tacos! Fortunately, there are many others coming along…
Now my strawberry patch has just been an utter disaster this year between slugs and other pests, but I noticed some hardy volunteer tomatoes coming along. I decided to stop fighting nature and just let it take its course! (However later I read that I should uproot volunteers to protect against disease…) Anyhow, here is my patch of volunteer toms.
And they are already setting fruit! I’ve grown cherry tomatoes and yellow pear tomatoes here before, so who knows what’s growing here now. I guess time will tell!
My cucumber trellis is filling in nicely, too.
This year I’m growing an heirloom variety – “lemon” which is supposedly small and perfect for salads and snacking. Looks like I should have some soon. Here’s one of the larger ones.
My bean trellis was completely full, so I had this idea of growing it out towards my deck. I’ve been working on training it for more than a week now.
I have no idea if I will be successful, but part of garden is trying new things, isn’t it? I also think part of gardening, at least for me, is just to enjoy. Yes it’s an awesome feeling to pull dinner out of my backyard, but it’s also a place I go to escape. I actually put a couple patio chairs back between my tomatoes and bean trellis…and right in front of the sage and oregano plants! It’s currently my favorite place to duck out when I need a little quiet. (That is, until one of my kids finds me hiding here.)
Speaking of herbs, a couple of mine have bolted! But I don’t mind – I’ve half an idea to harvest coriander seeds from my cilantro (for both seed saving and culinary purposes) – and the flowers also attract plenty of these guys:
My celeriac continues to thrive as well! I’m so excited I’ve been successful (thus far – knock on wood!) at growing a vegetable that is not widely grown. In case you’re wondering, celeriac is related to celery, but I think it’s a million times more versatile! You can slice or julienne it for salads, mash it like potatoes, or cube and cook it in stir fries. As a root vegetable, it also has a longer storage life than celery!
The other day I noticed this slightly upsetting, yet pretty site:
A few of my onion bulbs were apparently a bit stressed with the prolonged heat and going to seed. Not good. Many of the tops had fallen over, and I’d stopped watering them for about a week now, to encourage the skins to dry. Given some of the bolting, I decided to harvest the entire lot yesterday.
All told, I pulled out 40 onions! I’m pleased with this considering we’re working with a small container garden. I placed the bulbs on an old pallet out in the back of my garden to dry for another day or so. Then, I’ll cut off the tops and place the onions either in a basket or mesh bags in my garage for storing.
On a whim, I decided a second planting of peas. I’m not sure if I’ll make it in time, but I am going to try! My daughter loved these and I was really sad when it came time to pulling up the spent plants from summer. Here are the first of my new pea plants, just “born” yesterday! I figure if nothing else, we’ll harvest the pea vines, which are edible!
I also have a few new chard plants popping up, just in time for fall. I recently received beet, fennel, and collard green seeds and placed my order for garlic. I also plan on amending the soil in some of my beds here soon with plenty of compost. Terry and I are also finalizing plans for expanding some of the containers for more growing space, as well as discussing early plans for growing a mini-orchard. (Which is something I’ve been asking for for at least a couple years now!) There is so much more I want to do with our garden – and so much more I want to learn about how to make it really work for our family – but I also have to stop and reflect on how far we’ve come in the last three years from when we started this adventure….
(And more now…)
I guess this is good life stuff in general, isn’t it? While you look towards what you want to accomplish in the future, don’t forget to reflect on just how far you’ve come.
PS several of you sent photos of your gardens last week. Stay tuned for some highlights mid-week!