Friday, July 27, 2018

Garden Friday

 This Garden Friday finds us thankful for a bit o' rain.
The garden appreciated every last drop of liquid gold
that found its way to us.

Sweet potatoes are spreading like wildfire
and the teepee will soon be undetectable.
This is one of the easiest crops to grow
and the harvest stores well for a good, long time.
Here's a post we did on it a few years back
as part of our "Seed to Table" series.

 Refreshing slicing cucumbers are a welcome addition to salads.
I can't believe I've never grown them before.
They will be a staple in the garden from now on.

The banana peppers are starting to respond to the heat
(in a good way).
This plant in the straw bale is doing far better 
than the ones planted in pots.

 Carrots sown a little over a week ago
are already popping up.
This is the fastest germination I've ever had with carrots.
This is the Danvers variety, which get 6-8 inches long
and that is just about the depth of the bin in which they are growing.

 The pumpkins got a late start,
but are doing just fine.
They got transplanted into bigger pots this week,

and placed under this trellis structure.
With only 2 of the 4 seeds germinating,
they may not yield much.
We use pumpkin for C's morning pumpkin bread,
which I'm thrilled to say, he now makes himself!
The pumpkins can be cubed, roasted, mashed and put in the freezer
and should hold up well.

 Here is the same tomato, one week apart.
I'd say we're making progress.
Crops respond to nothing else like God-given rain.

 Elsewhere, my broccoli starts have been eaten by something.
I will have to reseed and cover the pots with screen.
Can't blame the bugs,
they know the good stuff when they see it!

 Here's a curious item.
I feed the squirrels (and bluejays) peanuts twice a week.
Well, it seems that they are getting buried
and reemerging as peanut plants.
I grew this in Florida,
but didn't really have any intention of growing it here.
Now that I think about it,
it might be a good idea!
One more thing to cross off the shopping list.
Next year, I'll make some space for them in the garden 
and get them in earlier in the season.

A small project got done this week.
These crates were acquired (for free) from a local fruit stand.
Since they said they just throw them out,
I asked if I could have a few.
They will come in handy for something, I'm sure!

For now, I lined them with screen
and will plant flowers in them
to place around the veggie garden.
It will lay out the welcome mat for local pollinators!

There are a few trays of flowers getting started to add to the veggie area.
Here, nasturtiums are coming up.
They are supposed to be great companions to beans, cabbage
and cucumbers and the bonus is that they do well in poor soil.
You just can't beat that!

The lemongrass has gone bonkers with the recent rainfall.
The sprawling lantana underneath has been equally content.

Everything has responded to the recent precipitation. 
It seems that even our drought tolerant specimens
breathed a sigh of relief when the rains came in earnest.

 Of course, we're always happy to share with the pollinators.

 They do so much for us,
the least we can do is provide some nourishment and respite for them.

 It was thrilling to finally be able to snap a shot of these amazing critters.
They have been frequenting our feeder so often,
that we ended up hanging another on the back deck.
No doubt they are using up all of their energy in the summer heat!

 They are absolutely fascinating
and a complete marvel to those of us fortunate enough 
to be able to take some time to watch them. 
C has taken the responsibility for making their nectar.

 Although there is not much going on in the garden right now,
we know that we will soon be hopping with activity
as the fall planting time draws nearer.
August proves to be project-laden.

What's going on in your garden
on this last weekend in July?

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