Tuesday, June 25, 2013

What's growing (and what's not) in the Garden?

A quick photographic tour of the late June gardens:


Peapods starting strong! Sadly the same can't be said for the first squash, which fell victim to blossom end rot. I concocted a homemade calcium spray after learning that calcium deficiency is to blame. Glad I learned this on the first one (and well before tomatoes). I very gently limed and put some oyster shell around the base as well.

 For some reason, after the recent hot and sunny spell, the leafy greens are taking off. #headscratch
The cucumbers are setting fruit but so far, they shrivel up and wilt. We're hunting bugs and sprinkle DE.... and keep learning.
 Taste tests must happen right at harvest. It's the only objective way. And oh, the hope and dreams that are encapsulated in those unassuming yellow flowers.

 The purple pole beans ran out of trellis. Next year will have to be a trellis building year. For now I added a few taller maple sticks on the fly. The borage is pretty and a treat for the bees.

 The ribes. My favorites. Not enough to warrant bird netting, and still pretty sour, but I'm pleased with them being just second-year shrubs.

 The blackberries are blooming. They're small and cut way back, I'm learning that I pruned them incorrectly and we probably watered them wrong, too, leading to their near-demise to rust. I'm spraying them with copper soap. Not everyone agrees, but I consider this a garden emergency and I really want to save those bushes. The blueberries on the other hand, needed almost no help this year to look amazing.

 The mess that is the end of strawberry season is here. I'm still picking a quart a day, but I'm also tossing quite a few due to rot and most often slug damage. The raspberries are almost ready to follow suit...

 The potatoes are flowering, and got hilled with more compost and a little extra straw over the weekend. I just love potatoes! The back bean and pea patch is doing well, but there is a big volunteer from the cucurbit family hijacking a whole trellis. It's growing so well, it better produce SOME fruit, I don't even care what it is! Interestingly, the volunteers that sprout up (different types of cucurbits and tomatoes) are very sturdy and have zero pest damage or wilt.... of course from past experience, their fruit isn't always the tastiest ... One day, one day, I'll learn more about seed saving and plant genetics. Learning, learning, that's what gardening is all about.

What is going on in your gardens? Have advice for me? I'd love to hear it!



  1. Your garden looks great. Have you tried beer for the slugs? I love DE but I don't use it on my garden as it kill the good bugs along with the bad ones. Jackie Clay from Backwoods Home Magazine has a very good article on seed saving on her blog. Missy @ ourlittleacres. It wouldn't publish under my blog this time!

    1. I'll come visit your little acres.... Interesting about the DE. Beer doesn't seem to work for me, because if it rains, that's when the slugs come out, and the beer dilutes/overflows, etc. My mom did that, and it worked for her. I think part of my problem is my extremely, extremely wet soil in the back garden.

  2. I have about half of my garden growing wonderfully, then about half that just wont get going. I am going to have to investigate what might be holding some of the veggies back. Your garden looks lovely!!

    1. Isn't it such a learning curve? I have a similar issue with succession planting. I do it, every 2 weeks, I planted Kale. I have a total of 4 plantings (one were seedlings from a friend). Now they all look the exact same because weather seems to be a much bigger impact than planting time...

  3. Your garden looks great! Recently we've been building trellises, and it makes sense to do a little more each year! As for the squash, we lost some of our first ones, and from what I've read it's normal to lose a few in the beginning. Keep up the great work!!

  4. your garden looks great! Thanks so much for the input on the flowering potatoes. I had a couple plants last year but they never flowered, so I wasn't sure. Happy gardening.