Every now and then I see a google
bike parked somewhere around Mountain View. Not sure what it was
doing on the walk from my home to the garden. Since it's an
unusual homage to the value of a bicycle I took its picture for
I've spent most of the summer
getting a few more big wood chips a day from the pile by the
entrance to the garden. I plop them down on the path where I pace
while watering. By the end of August that path was getting quite
"crunchy". I find the difference in texture between that and the
rest of the garden piquant.
Yup. I still have collard seeds I'd
like to share. Let me know if you want some of them to grow in
This was how it looked before the
squash beetle infestation. Better than ever before, and giving me
lots of food almost every day.
That's my neighbor. She goes by DN.
It doesn't show yet in this picture, but she's already slightly
pregnant. The next time I saw her after this it was more obvious.
Likely she'll have a kid early next year.
Lubab grew corn this year. She gave
me a few ears.
This was my collard plant when it
was great! Since then it's been plagued by squash bugs.
My tomato plants have been wonderful
all summer. I've developed a taste for home made tomato soup. I've
also been self sufficient in tomatoes since early July. That
includes taking dishes to potlucks with A LOT of tomatoes in them.
Zucchini goes in that soup when the
plant has given me one recently, which is most of the time.
Yummm! Another zucchini.
The kale is another victim of the
squash bugs. A few weeks after I took these pictures they sucked
it dry. I had to pull it out. I was very sad about that. I made
many delicious meal sized soups much greener by adding its leaves
That eggplant isn't giving me much,
just a few pretty balls the size of a small apple so far. I cook
them into my food just so I can say I've grown my own "African
eggplant". Not expecting to do that again. Next year I'm trying a
different kind of eggplant, if I plant any at all. The difference
between these and the eggplants I grew last year is that the bugs
and birds don't want to eat these. I guess that's progress.
The raspberries are much better this
year then they were last year. Just about every time I go to the
garden I find another few ripe berries. It's just a tiny snack,
but so delicious! I look forward to picking fruit off that plant
and eating it right away.
The grape harvest this year was my
best so far. I got another snack every day for weeks once they
came into season. Only a few friends visited during the time they
were in season. Maybe next year will be even better. Mid August
was the sweet spot of grape season this year. Visit during that
time frame and I'd be glad to share some with you.
Not only did I get more grapes than
ever before, but the birds got more to. I started seeing the
damage before I thought the grapes were ready. Next year I'm
putting up the bird netting earlier in July.
The pepper plant only gives me a
pepper every week or two, but that's better production than I
remember getting from one before. That squash and the broccoli
plants behind it were victims of the squash bugs a little while
after this picture was taken. All those bugs swarming on my
broccoli was very infuriating. Nowadays remembering that sight is
one of the things that makes it easy to squash them when I catch
Yeah, the horseradish and four
o'clocks are weeds, but they don't use water and they thrive on
neglect. That boils down to good enough reason to leave them
growing in my plot in spots I don't have something else for.
The diakon radish I planted from the
crown of one I got at the farmers market. I bought this two pound
thing with a little bit of green at the top. I just planted it
near enough to something else I like watering so that the ground
would be reasonably moist around it. Next time I have to give it
more space. Turned out that's a good way to get starts of that!
That Kiwi volunteered by the other
end of my grape structure. Since realizing what that strange plant
is I've been watching it grow with delight. If it fruits for me
next year it can have the spot forever. My fingers are crossed on
Those salmon colored flowers are
loved by the hummingbirds. I know because when I first put the
bird cloth over the grapes those were inside the net, except for
one that got away from me. I was standing there one day and a
hummingbird flew up to the one stalk that was free and
deliberately stuck his beak all the way down each of the flowers
on the stalk. Then he looked at the rest of the flowers and looked
at the net. I could just feel the "no way am I dumb enough to
fight with that net" resignation in the air as he flew away. After
that I moved the net behind all of those flowers. Now the
hummingbirds spend much more time in my garden. I like it like
Sometimes it really is a cucumber in
your pocket when you garden.
I'm getting a lot of chard for my
soup to. I cut off a large leaf or two every week or so from each
plant. I try to leave each of them with enough leaves to cover a
large area. I figure those are my solar collectors, so the more of
the area they cover the more efficiently my space is being used to
This pepper plant has given me one pepper so far, but it was good.
One reason is because I accidentally tripped over it and broke off
half the plant once. It's recovering fine, but that cut into
production. I've since put a tomato cage over it for further
protection. I'm hoping I can nurse both pepper plants through the
winter. If that happens they will be much more generous next year.
Otherwise I'll have to start from scratch again...
After I pulled out my broccoli
plants Mr. Tien gave me these three rose bushes. He explained that
his wife is now allergic to roses, so he has no more use for them.
That's Katie from Maryland. She was
wandering through the garden one day and stopped to chat a while.
Then she moved on. Haven't seen her since.