Monday, July 11, 2011

Around the homestead.


What's going on around the homestead {by proxy}...in bullet-points:

  • We have what we refer to as a "tomato jungle". We planted about 10 tomato plants I think. Then we got three volunteers that are actually growing tomatoes. (I didn't think that particular plant was heirloom...but...it's got tomatoes. Maybe it's a hybrid in its second bloom? Anyone know how that works?) Two of the plants are as tall as me. Lots of tomatoes are forming...a few have turned red (or orange or green sriped!) and they taste won-der-ful. Can't wait to get a real harvest!
  • The bush bean plants are full of green beans. I should be able to harvest them in a few days. The pole beans are just now beginning to flower. I didn't plant too many of either...need to make some time to sow a second planting.
  • We bought two table grape plants for 50% off one day on a whim. One green, one purple.Then we let them sit in their pots for a few weeks. And...I forgot to water them. And...one looked like it bit the dust. But we planted them both anyway...and they are both growing like crazy! I am hoping we actually get grapes next season.
  • I planted one zucchini plant, one acorn squash plant and one Blue Hubbard squash plant. It was an experiment. And one I probably won't do again. I should have stuck to plain ol' zucchini. The Blue Hubbard is a prolific grower...the vine is long and healthy...and a bit invasive, with not much food to show for all the space it's taking up. The acorn squash is quite compact and has tons of little squash on it. And this is fine, I just don't think it's going to be a huge hit as far as eating. We are a plain ol' zucchini kind of family. Next summer? All zucchini, all the time. Probably 3-4 plants so I can have plenty to shred and freeze.
  • Peppers. We planted 6 pepper plants. One purple bell pepper which was beautiful We already harvested one...and already ate it! Two jalapenos, two Anaheim's and one other that I can't recall the name of. The weird weather stunted the peppers quite a bit...but they're making a comeback and are going strong. Lots of blossoms...quite a few little peppers...they should be fine.
  • I planted one little cucumber plant. And it's doing fine, but could probably stand more sun. Our pecan tree still hasn't been trimmed so the garden is too shady. But we're trying to make it work.
  • Lettuce. I planted lettuce when we first put the garden in. And the slugs and snails and earwigs enjoyed it very much. It was gone before it could take off. I recently planted another small patch of lettuce. And it sprouted in like 2 days!! So far, so good. I planted it in a shady spot and it seems to like it, especially in this heat.
  • We planted some Walla Walla onions...also on a whim. I've never grown onions. I have no idea what to do...when to harvest...nothing. So we're wingin' it! So far so good...they seem happy in their little row along the side fence.
  • Chris wanted to try his hand at growing cantaloupe from seed. So he tossed a few seeds in the ground and lo and behold, a few days later, sprouts! Now they're good strong vines with flowers and everything! I hope we actually get some melons. I hear they're hard to grow...but so far so good.
  • We also planted one lone little blackberry plant. I bought it (on a whim...I tend to do that a lot, don't I?) at the discount grocery store for $5 then set it out on the deck and didn't water it right along with the poor grapes. It croaked. Poor little thing. But...we planted it anyway...and that little sucker sprouted leaves. Now it's fine. And I'm sure one day we'll regret planting that baby...at least it's thornless!
  • We also planted some non-food plants...Japanese maples. Chris planted a bunch of seeds that my uncle gave him and he's got about 7 or 8 trees growing...they're adorable! We also had a volunteer maple from our neighbors tree growing in the raised bed. I dug it up, put it in a pot and it promptly went into shock. I thought we'd lost it. But after a day or two it perked back up and now looks healthy and happy. Not sure what we're going to do with it once it's bigger...we really don't need more shade around here. So we'll see... (Actually...it would be nice if the shade was near the house and the sun was near the fence...and not the other way around. But we're sort of stuck with this pecan tree for the time being...so...it is what it is.)
I wish we could have planted more but the shade issue needs to be settled before we plant anymore. Next year...we'll grow more for sure.

So that's what's going on around here...what's happening at your place?

7 comments:

Lelainia N. Lloyd said...

You've become quite the urban farmer! Lovin' seeing your chickies again-I've missed them!

Denise said...

it seems as if your garden is doing quite well. I am sure you are thrilled. We've had pretty good weather the last few days so that helps my garden A LOT. I cannot wait for fresh off the vine tomatoes :)

Thomas said...

I love Japanese maples. Interesting that your are starting them from seeds. I wonder how fast they grow.

Michelle @ Give a Girl a Fig said...

Hi Thomas...I have to say, they don't grow fast at all! :) But we're giving it a shot...so far so good!

Michelle said...

I envy you your garden. :) I don't have space for vegetables or the climate for second plantings.
I have some tomatoes in pots and some strawberries but I'd love to grow zucchini.

pinkpeppercorns said...

Wow! You've got a LOT going on there! Impressive!

Did you know that tomatoes are perennials? Many people think they're annuals because they croak once cold weather comes. If you live in a year-round warm climate, they'll behave like the perennials they are.

PaulaB52 said...

Cantaloupes are easy to grow. They even tell you when they are ripe, they break easily off the vine. When they begin to turn orange/brown, keep a good eye on them because the coons will beat you to it!