Garden Quest #5 – Mid June 2014 update


No particular theme for this gardening update, but I thought progress deserved an update. The big highlight of this week was spotting the beautiful first blooms on our pea vines. I think I mistakenly bought a shelling pea variety (Ferry-Morse Alaska) instead of a sugar snap or snow pea, but hopefully we get at least some enjoyment out of them.

The only thing we’ve harvested so far has been our first sowing of spinach. The leaves are quite delicate and tasty – perfect in light early summer salads. Unfortunately, I didn’t get this variety (Burpee Double Choice Hybrid) in the ground early enough, so the first sowing is already trying to bolt and set seed despite the leaves barely hitting mature form. My second sowing is just now germinating. No idea if we’ll get much. I’ve been getting most of my spinach from the farmer’s market still, but I sowed a warm-weather variety yesterday. Reading more about spinach, a lot of gardeners seem to get best results with it as a fall crop.

Pumpkins, cucumbers, and green beans have all pretty much shed their baby leaves and are starting to add growth. No blooms on the beans yet but they are sizing up well. I planted a few more to fill in gaps yesterday.

Despite getting transplanted with tiny, tiny roots and enduring some cold nights our cherry tomatoes have shown little sign of shock. Maybe we’ll get something after all. I did give up on my Thai hot peppers.

Some of our late plantings are finally starting to sprout. Zucchini and turnips have definitely been spotted, and I think our sunflowers also just emerged. I planted a couple broccoli but it’s not the greatest time of year for correct maturation, so I’ll do a planting in July for fall. Ditto kohlrabi. Our sweet corn also just started to pop up. Hopefully I dedicated enough space to get correct pollination (~4 linear feet with four rows).

The only thing that’s totally MIA is basil (Burpee Summerlong). I’m trying again with indoor germination now. I’ll give it two weeks to start before ordering a different variety or resorting to starts at the farmer’s market.

The latest addition is a rhubarb plant transplanted from my parents’ garden. These crowns are themselves transplants from the family farm in MI – so they go back probably at least 70 years. I made a decent pie last night and the Alchemist and I have been quite enjoying NWEdible’s Rhubarb 75 cocktail based on a rhubarb simple syrup. It’s delicious.

Harvest to date:

  • Spinach: 61g
  • Rhubarb (from my parents’ garden): 6 cups worth of chopped stalks

3 Comments on “Garden Quest #5 – Mid June 2014 update”

  1. Elizabeth McCarthy says:

    Completely over joyed that I have a new simple syrup to make (and a new drink to taste). I love Rhubarb. And that is cool about the transplants going back at least 70 years!

    I have to admit, I am pretty envious about your garden. I live in an apt., so I am limited. I tried doing a container garden the first year I was here, but its a lot more work than a regular garden. LOL. actually, if I invested in self watering containers, it would help a lot. Because I don’t have a water spout in my patio.

    • David says:

      Thanks for reading!

      I’m still very much a gardening newbie, but depending on how you cook and how much sun you get, you could grow herbs. Seeds are cheap, but even small started plants have more foliage than what you get in the “herb coffins” at the supermarket for the same or cheaper.

      Pick the right kind of container and many of them will grow okay in a sunny indoors spot even in the winter months. Or so I’m told.

      I love pesto but it’s too expensive unless you grow your own basil, which is why I’m so disappointed in my basil failure so far.

      • Elizabeth McCarthy says:

        Ya, I am downstairs in a shaded patio. LOL. only get the sun in the morning. so now i am growing succulents. they are doing well.

        as for Basil and I, we fight all the time. i just don’t have a green thumb for basil. but one thing I know, it does not like Miracle Gro. Their soil is way to compact and retains too much water. best to you and basil. gotta love home made pesto. and I may take herb gardening up again. especially love cilantro!

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