Mid June Garden Update

The weather around here has been crazy.  It rains for a week straight then its sunny but in the 50s.  I went from a fleece at night three days ago to the middle of a 100 degree heat wave today.  While this is irritating to me, the plants seem very happy.

While TB has been doing a nice job with the lawn, I have been working on the gardens.  Here is a shot of our side yard where the main veggie and flower gardens are. You will notice Opie in the background keeping watch over everything.

In the garden in the front we now have lots of tiny little tomatoes!  These are the Matina variety that gets about 3-4 inches big.

In with the tomatoes is the sweet basil.  It is said that if you plant basil and tomatoes next to each other it’s helps each’s flavor. It apparently also helps make the leaves huge.  (That’s a tongue depressor used as a marker in the background for scale.) TB just picks a leaf and walks around the garden eating it. He can’t wait for the tomatoes for the basil/tomato/mozzarella combo he eats all summer.

Even the peppers have started to get tiny flowers!  These are bell peppers.  I planted two plants from a carnival mixed color seed pack.  We won’t know what color they are until they are ripe.  I secretly hope both are purple!

I may be the most excited about the strawberries.  These plants have a long payoff time.  For the first year you are supposed to pick off any fruit that pop up and cut off all but one or two runners.  Then in year 2 you can actually eat the fruit That meant I planted these strawberries last year and can only now get excited.   I ate one the other day and it was so awesome.  Worth the wait!  Now there are tons popping up.

Next we move over to the left garden.  This is where we installed the cucumber frame (tutorial here) not so long ago.  Now we have a ton of crazy vines trying to grow everywhere.  This will be my problem wild child that needs a lot of attention.  I have been training it to grow up the frame/trellis using the same cloth strips I used to stake the peppers (tutorial here).

In the front left side of this garden are the beets.  Since it’s been cool lately they are still going strong.  I am leaving them until they really complain.  Last fall when I pulled them there was nothing but leaves but I can see little beets poking out of the soil.  Don’t knock em until you try them. Roast them with olive oil, then add a splash of vinegar and chill.  Add some crumbled goat cheese and you are in.

And finally, our last stop on today’s tour , on the back left of the garden – pumpkin.  When we dumped last years compost in to the gardens all the stuff hadn’t cooked all the way.  Namely the pumpkin seeds from last year’s jack-o-lantern.  Up sprang about 10-12 seedlings.  I thought this would be fun and begged TB to keep one.  He laughed at me, said I had no idea how big they would get and told me to try it out.  It is June.  I am guessing they would be ready for harvest around October.  That’s four months from now.

This is what one leaf looks like.  I put my hand in the shot so you could understand how freaking big one leaf is.   This is not the biggest leaf.  It has already almost out grown the spot it is in.  It is only June.  I am guessing this will be yanked out shortly. And I’m sure you will hear TB laughing the whole time.  (I know I don’t have my engagement ring on here.  I have not changed my mind and TB hasn’t gotten sick of me just yet.  I was staining some trim and didn’t want to get the ring yucked up.)

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