Garden Update July W3: Helpers Growing in Cracks, Purple Broccoli and More!
|Garden B July W3|
|Coriander growing in the cracks of the pathway of Garden A|
Last year we had problems growing cilantro, but did grow a few little cilantro plants that bolted right away so I just let them go to seed. Apparently the seeds went everywhere and self seeded which started to grow very early in the spring this year. The cilantro even self seeded into the cracks of our pavers! I've decided to let it go to seed and self seed again this year, I love helpers!
I think it looks pretty with all the flowers and I'm not harvesting anything except broccoli in Garden A yet, so I'm not using the path ways yet. We had another helper in garden B, a radish (see below photo). So I'm left with the conclusion to try one of three things next season. Since it seems like plants like to grow in our pavers cracks (both good and bad plants), I figure I should try to either make sure nothing can grow in the cracks or embrace this space as a place to plant and try to crowd out the weed with plants I would want. I'm thinking thyme could be good if I choose to use cracks as planting. If I decide to try to make sure no life can grow in the cracks then I plan to try a natural weed killer and to fill in more sand in the cracks. Any other ideas?
|A radish helper growing in the cracks between pavers in Garden B|
|Our purple broccoli in Garden A going to flower|
|Another broccoli plant in Garden A just starting to go to flower, I better harvest it soon!|
We have broccoli! And not just any broccoli but purple broccoli. I'm so excited, because I was starting to doubt if the broccoli would even grow at all because they're drowned out by the tomatoes (except for the ones we planted in our front bed which were planted weeks later than our other broccoli) and they seem to be growing straight up rather than out. I've concluded broccoli needs LOTS of space. More like 1 1/2 sq ft instead of the 1 sq ft suggested in sq ft gardening. Mental note for next year, only plant lettuce or root vegetables in the middle row of tomatoes. Not only will they be fine in a little shade but the root vegetables don't need to be harvested until fall, so I won't have to worry about it being less accessible to harvest. I've learned that the hard way before.
Pests in the Garden!
I found a Japanese beetle on our broccoli plant (along with some holes in the leaves) for the first time in or garden today. I picked it off, put it into a container and put it on the ground and stepped on it. Organic gardening at it's finest! Ironically about a week ago someone from WCCO asked if I wanted to come on and discuss controlling Japanese beetles. I was so flattered but graciously declined and told her that I had not had any problems with it in the past and therefore I didn't feel I would have enough experience to talk about it. I referred her to fellow blogger and gardener Amy of Get Busy Gardening since she did a post on using traps to treat them. Perhaps I jinxed myself! Anyone else having problems with Japanese beetles?
|Roma tomatoes July W3 Garden A|
|Cucumber from Garden B July W3|
One of my favorite restaurants, Good Earth is using cucumbers as they're seasonal meal inspiration. According to them " cucumbers are high in potassium, a heart healthy electrolyte, and Vitamin K for bone strength. Cucumbers also contain many anti-oxidants including Vitamins A and C." Check out their seasonal menu here for inspiration or if you live in the area try one of their dishes to see if you like cucumbers or green tea (they're other ingredient this month). I'm intrigued by their green tea buckwheat Saba noodles.....
|Our fennel in the center (it looks ferny) of our jungle of a Garden B|
Sugar Snap Peas
|Sugar Snap Peas Garden B July W3|
|Seed Saver's Purple Pole Beans Garden B|
|radishes and beet harvested last week check out the size of the middle one!|
Our Front Garden Bed
|catnip gone crazy in our front garden bed!|
Our Container Garden
|Basil in a large container July W3|
The only other plant I have in a container in or front yard is the stevia plant I had last year that survived into this year. The reason is my new enemy, squirrels. I planted lettuce, mint, lemon balm, and cilantro this season all ruined by squirrels. The same as last year. Some how some survived last year, despite the squirrels but there were casualties. I thought I'd be slick this year and let them germinate inside first and then bring them outside when they got established. Well they didn't transition well and died in a day, so much for that. I'm thinking next year I will make a cage to put around my containers until they get established. Any ideals? Has anyone else had this problem?
New Garden Bed
|Black Zucchini blossom July W3 in backyard garden bed|
We have zucchini flowers! We have never grown zucchini, squash, or pumpkins before. We planted them in our new garden bed we made this spring, to see if they is enough sun or not for fruiting plants. It's an ideal spot for it because we have a built in trellis with our chain fence, so I've been hoping our experiment would work. Even though all we planted in this bed looks like it's doing well I wasn't sure if it would even produce anything, until......our black zucchini started to flower. I'm hopeful now that they'll all produce. Has any one ate squash flowers before? I should probably try...... I also always forget to try eating pea shoots.
So that's what's going on in our garden, how about yours?
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