Monday, July 5, 2010

Playing catch-up

That's what I feel like I'm doing this time of year in the garden, as weeds run rampant and there can never be enough watering. But it's too hot to weed today, so time to play catch-up on the blog! In words and pictures, here are some updates that I promised to make in previous posts.

I showed Barbara planting sweet potatoes but never posted a picture of the finished cage that we placed around the bed to keep the voles out.

(Katharine Lambert's photo.) And here's how the bed looked in mid-June:

Bonus points if you spot the weed. I didn't until I looked at the photo, then I pulled it out next time I was at the garden.

I promised updates on the spinach garden including reviews of the spinach substitutes. I did take home some Egyptian spinach (molokheiya), which looks like this:

Raw, I found it bland and green-tasting, but cooked it was pretty good - like spinach!

The Swiss chard waves have not been a success - well, the chard itself is lovely and delicious:

But the "rows" were planted far too close for the rainbow effect to work. I have done some thinning for the health of the plants, but it still just looks like a mass of chard.

In keeping with the Grow It Give It initiative, we've so far donated over 30 pounds of produce from the demo garden. Mostly chard. And some cucumbers - Poona Kheera is a very productive variety! I just hope the recipients recognize the fat yellow fruits with russet skin as cucumbers. They taste wonderful.

The peanut crop is not looking good - we did have five plants come up at the demo garden from seed, but several have been damaged - by this little villain, who thinks he belongs to us now:

However, the original two plants I grew indoors are still doing well in pots on my deck, and they have flowered:

Not a great picture, but it gives you an idea of the leguminous flower shape (like a yellow sweet pea, hm?). I'm going to see if I can actually raise peanuts in pots. My husband says he grew some as a kid in a dish shaped like a peanut (it was a kit), so I have hope.

And finally, back in May I showed you my male kolomikta kiwi resplendent in his spring foliage - unfortunately the color fades in summer, but the female has been doing her thing and bearing fruit:

I've harvested four kiwifruits so far, each about as big as a small grape, and there are a few more to come. Hopefully in later years we will get a bigger crop, but I'm glad to have even a few!

That's all for now - will be back with more soon, from the demo garden and on the road.

2 comments:

  1. Thank you. This is wonderful because you talk about all the same kinds of things I have troubles with! Voles, in particular. I'm guessing the fencing goes underneath the garden and not just around the outside.

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    Replies
    1. It just goes around the outside, but it has to go down into the ground at least six inches to keep them from digging under. The only ones that have ever gotten in came in over the top crawling up the vines.

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