Jul 18, 2013

Garden Update July Week 3: Cool Season Plants Past their Prime and Time to Plant 2nd Crop for Fall

Taken July 16 2013 in our backyard: our heirloom blue podded sugar snap peas

Our gardens at a lull right now due to late planting of our peas and beans (due to our late spring and late planting) which are usually in full swing now. Our garden is in a state of transition from cool spring plants (peas, broccoli, greens, cilantro, berries, etc.) to warm season plants (beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, etc.)  So basically right now is all about harvesting and planting second crops for fall (which I plan to do this weekend).


our front yard garden July 16 2013

Right now I'm mostly harvesting and training plants onto our infrastructure, and have hardly had to water since we've had a slightly cooler than normal and wetter summer (although this week we have had a heat index of 100 degrees).  So I've luckily only had to peak my head out to check out the garden once or twice a week early in the mourning to weed, train, and harvest. 

Taken July 17 2013 Garden A of front garden
Taken July 17 2013 Garden B of front garden

What We Are Harvesting Now

Raspberries
Our raspberries are at their prime right now, which would usually be over now, last year we were done with our raspberries before July even (due to our early spring in 2012). I have a feeling much like our strawberries that our raspberries will be less of a harvest than last year despite all the talk about MN having a bumper berry year due to our unusually late spring this year.

Kale
I've had a problem in the past with harvesting kale.  We usually never harvested all that we could and that was with only 3-4 plants.  This year I planted 3 times that, with the promise to myself that I would.  I have been harvesting some but not enough to freezeAfter I make strawberry raspberry jam I plan to harvest a bunch and freeze it, since we have our freezer full of berries right now.

Lettuce
I should have harvested our lettuce last month, because it's been bolting for a while and secreting a white milky substance.  So it's long over due to be harvested.  I plan to eat a lot of salads the next couple of weeks and replant for fall this weekend.  We have some transplants I started to grow the first week of June, but they are not big enough to transplant and I doubt will survive the heat.

Peas  
I've only harvest a few peas so far.  Not even enough to weigh.  I believe they will die before they produce, so I've already written off our peas as a failure for the first half of the season and plan to plant peas right next to the existing plants this weekend for fall.  Hopefully 2nd time will be a charm this season.  Last year at this time I was saying the peas were the star of the garden.

Cilantro, Mustard, Arugula  
Is bolting and I need to just harvest and replant it

Broccoli
I just checked on our garden today and noticed that most of the broccoli heads are starting or perfectly formed and one is actually starting to try to go to flower (already past the time I should have harvested it).  Whoops!  So harvest is just on the horizon!

Beets
I have not harvested yet, however I believe I can now if I wish, they grew like crazy in the last week.  So I plan to pull a few and see how big they are and start to slowly harvest and replant for fall.  We could have actually planted our beets earlier in the season since they tolerate frost well, and then we would have had more space in the garden when things really take off in July.

Our JalapeƱo plant is really taking off taken July 17 2013

Jalapenos
Are jalapeno plant is really taking off.  We have a whole bunch of jalapenos we could harvest as you can see in the picture above, but I have yet to harvest because I still have two spicy peppers I need to use in the fridge first.  Our habanero is just showing signs of starting to grow peppers.

Thai Basil
Thai basil has been doing amazing in our container box in the backyard (for like over a month!) I have yet to harvest any still, since I'm not sure what to use it in for cooking.

Other Notes about Our Garden This Week
July 17 2013 Garden A: purple basil, bell pepper, and beets
Basil
While our Thai basil has been doing amazing in our container box in the backyard (for like over a month!), our purple basil (that was of equal size and quality and from the same nursery as our Thai basil) has been growing pretty slowly.  We got the transplant from the same nursery as we did last year which was similar size and quality in 2012, and it did well.   So I'm hoping it will catch up soon.

Bell Peppers
Our bell peppers seem rather small still but do have teeny tiny peppers on them, so hopefully they will produce this year.  We've never had problems before until last year, but I overcrowded them so I'm not surprised.  We do have 2 peppers in danger of this due to a helper cherry tomato plant.  I just couldn't pull it out.  Hopefully with heavy pruning of the cherry tomato plant, they can live together in harmony.  

What We Plan to Plant For Fall
  • lettuce 
  • turnips (if room)
  • beets
  • peas
  • cilantro
Are you planning on planting anything for fall?  As always I love to hear from everyone! 

Other Post you might like:
Our garden July W3 2012
Fall Planting Guide Zone 3-4

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