Strawberries from the Garden

Strawberries from the Garden

Jun 14, 2012

Garden Progress as of June 14, 2012

Cherokee Purple Tomato
Carrots and Radishes Under
Tomato Plants

We have had a good amount of rain and the garden is growing quite rapidly at the moment. I went out again today and tied tomatoes to their stakes. They seem to have grown another 4-6 inches in a very short amount of time. Judging by the number of blooms on the tomato plants, I think we will have a pretty good crop of tomatoes this year. 
As I look around the garden, it seems that everything is actually doing pretty well right now. All of the berries are growing well and the warm weather crops such as the beans, peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, and squash are all starting to really show substantial growth and they are all producing a good amount of flowers. At this rate, we should have a pretty good harvest this summer.
Blush of Color (Blueberries)


Good Neighbors; Tomato,
Marigolds, Radishes, and

First Sign of Zucchini

The Beauty of Companion Gardening
Lilies, Glads, Cabbage

The Last of the Sweet Peas

New Blooms in the
Perennial Bed

Kentucky Wonder Pole Beans

Sugar Baby Watermelon

Squash Neighborhood

Blue Berries

Red Raspberries
Swiss Chard

Jun 9, 2012

Garlic Scapes

Curled Garlic Scape
Don't forget to cut your garlic scapes from your garlic to increase the amount of energy directed to the garlic bulb, which will give you larger bulbs to harvest. The garlic scapes are great to use in stir fry recipes, pasta recipes, and you might even like them as a new way to make pesto. There are a lot of recipes online if you search for garlic scape recipes.

When you harvest the garlic scapes, remember, the best, more tender scapes are the ones that are smaller and more curled. As they mature, they grow larger, a little tougher, and they begin to straighten out. 
Take a walk through your garden, you might find a new ingredient to try in one of your favorite recipes!

Jun 5, 2012

Garden Progress As of June 5, 2012

Red Raspberries
Blue Berries
The garden is growing full speed at this point! I love walking through the garden and seeing all of the different veggies and berries at different stages. Everything is growing and everything is moving ahead at it's own pace which makes for great variety in meals this time of year.

Berries are at various stages right now. We have been picking strawberries for several weeks now and we have enjoyed eating them with shortcake and ice cream, but I think my favorite way to enjoy them is right out of the garden. It's really hard to eat strawberries from the grocery store once you grow your own! They are worth the space and the effort.

Black Berries
Kentucky Wonder Pole Beans

Swiss Chard under Bean Teepee
 Right now, the red raspberries are just starting to ripen. You can pick one or two here and there, not by the quart yet. In about a week or week and a half, I'll be freezing them and making jam.

The blue berries are starting to show hints of blue, but it will be about a month yet before they are ready. The black berries are new for me this year. I am very excited to see how well they are doing. Last year we accidentally lost some of the plants to the weed eater, but I think they have recovered nicely. I'm not sure how long they will take to ripen. I have really enjoyed them so far due to their large blossoms. They are quite striking.

Weather has been tricky for lettuce and such, I did have to pull some that had bolted and was starting to taste a little bitter. I should have put the shade cloth on, but I lost track of time. I do have some young seedlings of lettuce nestled here and there that are starting to look good. There is Swiss Chard planted beneath one of my teepees that I use for pole beans. It will last really well in the shade of the beans.

I have three Black Krim pole tomatoes planted this year. I started them from seed indoors and then transplanted them to the garden. I am very curious to see how they grow. I usually have tomatoes that reach 6-8 ft anyway, so I am almost afraid to see how tall an actual pole tomato may grow. This could be quite a site to see!
Black Krim Pole Tomato

Cherokee and San Marzano Tomatoes

Garden Progress as of June 5th
 My main tomato bed has two of my favorites. I planted Cherokee purple and San Marzano. Both of these tomatoes are quite meaty and a delight in any recipe. I mainly use the San Marzano for sauce and salsa. The Cherokee is fantastic  on a sandwich or a salad. One of my favorite ways to prepare the Cherokee tomatoes is to dice it up with garlic, olive oil, and   basil and can it. It makes a great 'fresh tasting' sauce to grab off of the shelf in the winter. It's a favorite!
Perennial Garden at Corner of Garden

As I look across the garden and start to look at the progress of the garden, I think that it is in pretty good shape this year. I still have the busiest time yet to come, but it looks like it is coming a long nicely.

I think the use of companion gardening, while may be confusing for some to look at and try to decipher, is what makes the difference between a small garden in a small space and a bountiful garden in a small space! I don't have a large backyard space for growing a garden, but with the use of interplanting, companion gardening, and successive plantings, I am able to get a fairly large harvest.

The perennial garden at the corner of the garden is more than just a pretty corner. Due to the types of plants that I keep in this garden, it is a great destination for beneficial insects and pollinators. This little addition is kind of my own insurance plan for good pollination in the garden. The pollinators love to flit through the garden as they travel to and from the perennial garden which keeps everything producing nicely.

I also interplant flowers and herbs throughout the garden to attract beneficial insects and to confuse harmful insects. Marigolds are a great way of keeping harmful insects from damaging your veggies. I get the added bonus of enjoying a garden that is not only bountiful, but beautiful.