The sunflower does seem to be doing
well. Dramatically bigger by the end of the month! Likely I'll see
sunflowers on it by the middle of July.
I have about half a dozen tomato
plants. Of them all the stupice were the earliest with green
balls, and by the end of the month the first of them were edible.
As of July 5th, I've eaten about three of those! Everything else
just keeps looking more pregnant, as their green balls grow and
grow without changing color. The suspense is killing me! I want to
know what those things do to a salad...
By the end of the month the tomato
plants were all MUCH BIGGER!
That kale plant is mainly just a big
batch of seeds at this point. Providing shade for the squash,
which that plant really doesn't need. Not long after I took this
last picture of the thing I pulled it. Not much kale in my garden
any more now.
The onions and beets are doing well!
These potato plants seem to be doing
quite well. I had another one, but that dried up and blew away.
I'm afraid that was caused by some disease. I'm hoping these guys
do better. Never having had potato plants doing well before, I'm
looking forward to eating homegrown! My starts came from Lubob,
who gave me the potatoes with growing eyes. One is a Yukon Gold,
the other is a Rio Grande Red. Forgot which is which.
By the end of the month the potato
plants looked more like bushes! Virginia said the Irish guy said
"harvest them two weeks after you see flowers." I harvested them
on July 4th, which was about right. Got 44 oz. of yummy looking
potatoes out of them. Yummm!
The fava beans have dried out now.
After I took that picture I harvested the beans. Turns out I got
about a pound of beans out of that (maybe a square yard?).
In the middle of the month I planted nasturtiums and cucumbers in
the bare spot near the grapes. By the end of the month they were
The grape vines are steadily
growing. Maybe it was two weeks between these pictures, and look
at the change! There are other plots where MUCH MORE growth is
happening to the grapes. I think those gardeners use a lot more
plant food on their stuff than I do. I'm grateful for the progress
I'm seeing from these though.
It's exciting to me to see the vines
finally reaching the top of the structure. I figure it's only a
matter of time now until they start giving me some good shade. :-)
Looking forward to lots of grapes in the fall! All I have to do is
keep watering them all summer...
The artichoke is fading now. Every
time I go out to tend the garden more of its leaves have fallen on
the ground. I pick them up so the snails don't have places to hide
in the area. I've eaten something like two dozen artichokes from
the plant this year. I'm very happy with that. Never had all the
artichokes I wanted before!
These were the last good looking
ones I expect to eat this year. Batina likes to leave a few on the
plant to ripen into pretty blue flowers and then seed. Me, I just
ate them all. Thank you artichoke!
Okay, so she inspired me. I left the
last two to flower. This is the better looking one.
I'm getting nice roses on an ongoing basis now. Usually I leave
them on the plant until they are past their prime, and then I
deadhead them. Smell the fragrance before throwing them away
though. They all smell great.
That broccoli plant gave me yet
another serving of broccoli not long after I took each of these
pictures. The stem was a bit woodier than I really wanted, but
still it was a yummy food. This is the only broccoli plant I have
at this point in time. I had another that was threatening to feed
me again, but I tripped over that one. That killed it.
The collards are my most reliable
producers of food. Generally I harvest all the leaves that are
growing into something else's space. After I get all those I
harvest all of the leaves that are MUCH BIGGER than my hand. These
plants are mature enough that there are usually another half dozen
of those every day or two.
Lately I've been eating a pound of
leaves every few days. They fill my belly with chewy and fibrous
filler. I ask people "what's the point of bariatric surgery when
you can accomplish about the same thing by eating lots of collard
These days the collard plants don't
look a lot different, but they churn out another pound of leaves
ever day or two. This is a typical harvest, maybe a pound and a
half of greens. I've taken to adding collards to all kinds of
dishes. My latest discovery is that they have the same kind of
cooking time as eggplant and the two flavors go great together.
Every now and then the pepper plant yields another pepper. Sweet
at this size. I'm trying to leave one on the vine long enough to
find out if it changes color and/or flavor as it matures. I've
also planted another couple of pepper plants. One isn't enough to
keep me in peppers!
That basil is freshly planted. I've
only had a couple of stalks of the leaves, but they added a
delicious and fragrant note to the meal. Glad to have that plant.
Since these pictures were taken I added a couple of Thai basil
plants, which look quite different. I've not tried those yet. One
thing I've learned, basil takes a lot more water than some plants.
In early June the first bean plant
has started climbing up the scaffolding. I replanted after the
snails cleaned out most of them. If the first batch had survived
they would all be crawling up right now. By the end of the month
many of the beans were crawling up the netting, and I was eating
another pod of beans just about every time I visit the market.
Talking to Marci about the snails
she said "put the snail bait down in the places where they hide in
the day." "The shady side of boards and places like that." She
also indicated that if I put it right by the plants I'll wash it
out with watering. What good is that? Lots of gardeners think that
the best thing to do with a snail is step on it. I've not been
converted into a snail hater yet, but I'm getting there.
At the beginning of the month a good
harvest was four artichokes, one garlic bulb including stem, a few
basil leaves, and a pound of fava beans (plus pods).
Gardening in flip-flops seems to be
the best way to deal with the convienience/protection tradeoffs.
Doing this I've gotten by far the best tan on my feet I've had
since the 1970s. I think of those as "Brazilian tan lines" because
of the flags on the flip-flops themselves.