Sunday, July 10, 2011

Garden Update week of 5-11 Jul 2011


Because of the time taken to build and fill the beds and our trip to St. Louis,the garden was planted fairly late this year. Then add in many days of cold, rainy weather with no sun and the garden was looking poorly. Lately, after some stretches of warmer, sunnier weather, plants are starting to green up and grow. Of course, the lettuces have loved the weather and we have been having salads almost every night. Overall, the garden is looking good and is starting to catch up with the neighbors.

As you can see, the tomatoes (the only plants not in raised beds) are looking great. The Brandywine is growing well and already has a fairly large fruit. The Cherokee Purple and Sun Gold are also growing strongly and setting fruit. Several of the Jet Stars are also flowering and have small fruit. The Romas in the cages look healthy but are taking their time while hopefully developing a good root structure.

Brandywine tomatocherokee_purple_tomato_5JulRoma_tomato_5Jul

The cucumbers are starting to vine now and I am training them up the trellis. The eggplants in the same box have been ravaged by flea beetles and look much worse now than in the photo. The beetles came much earlier this year, while the eggplants were still small and vulnerable. I will be lucky to get even one fruit this year, although one plant now has a flower about to open.


The peppers have not looked great this year, having a yellowish color and small size. As a benchmark, the Jalapeno pepper, which usually takes off and produces fruit early, has sat there with nary a flower. The Lady Bell  bell peppers are starting to flower now and set fruit.


The broccoli and Brussels sprouts in bed 2 are enjoying their time under floating row cover, but are still being munched on. The nasturtium Alaska are starting to blossom and we are enjoying the color the flowers add to our salads.


In the neighboring bed 1, the squash plants look great. My neighbors are squishing squash bugs and scraping off egg cases, while my plants under the row cover seem to be OK. So far so good, but the plants are still young and no flowers have appeared.


Box 3 is also covered and hosts more brassicas: collards and kale. Collards Georgia are coming along nicely and later this week I will harvest some leaves in honor of my mother-in-law, who is coming to visit from Mississippi. The kale Beedy’s Camden is starting to take off. Its leaf is not as curly as my standard, Winterbor, but it is supposed to be more tender. Meanwhile, the Buttercrunch lettuce is doing great.


Finally, the sugar snap peas, Sugar Ann, are starting to produce heavily. The snow pea, Dwarf Frey Sugar, is anything but dwarf but is starting to produce purple-white flowers.


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