Weekly Garden Journal #17

I’m not in NYC after all…  My daughter stayed with us the Whole Time her daughters were here and they all flew home yesterday.  The entire Visit was Magical…

We dropped them off at the Louisville airport early yesterday morning and were home by noon.  It was hot, but we got out and cleaned up the Edible Garden.  I pulled up all the Romas, a couple of Big Berthas and one zucchini plant. The last crop of green beans is puny and rusted, but I’m not ready to give up on them.  The pole beans were excruciatingly removed from the trellis. Everything that’s left has fruit (veg) on it that’s not quite ready to harvest.  In the center of the naked trellis is a healthy pineapple sage bush which should be blooming in a couple of weeks…

I brought in three pots of basil, ready for drying.  I’ve got a large pot of three left that I’ll use for making pesto next week.

It’s time to wind it down now and the plan is to have the Edible Garden emptied and the pool down by Labor day.  We’ll be leaving for a couple of weeks September 8, trailer trippin’ to New Mexico and Colorado.

After our return from that Adventure, we have Plans for Fall planting in the Bird Garden.  Until then, I’m not sure I’ve much to blog about gardening…

I’ll be over at Sonnystone Acres , though, and you’re always welcome to come sit on the front porch with me…

Keep on Growing…

 

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Weekly Garden Journal #15

Whew! 15 weeks!  Let’s take a tour of the Gardens at Sonnystone Today…

Remember the “conservatory” that we built at the end of last season?  I pictured filling it with plants and using it like a greenhouse, but that was a pipe dream.  It is, however, an excellent porch extension that keeps the pathway from the kitchen to the laundry room dry and warmer and that’s the Real reason it was built.

The west door leads to the pool area; the east door leads to the Edible Garden…

Around on the east garden, the butterfly bushes that I thought were going to die are not all that pretty, but the butterflies don’t mind.  My new maple-leaf viburnum is strong; it will have to be moved this fall for an archaeological project that I haven’t told you about, yet.  The birds have feasted on the grapes…

On the south side, the plants I planted around the birdfeeders are too close together…Why do I Always do that?…and they’ll probably not flower well.  This fall they will be moved into a new garden and spaced properly, I swear!

The volunteer hyssop is such a bee and butterfly magnet!  The petunias in the light-pole planter don’t seem to mind sharing the spotlight.

Roses and Daisies are the vanguard of the Front Porch…

The lavender in the poolside garden is going strong, but the hydrangeas encroached over the one I had kept in a pot.  It looked weak this spring, but it is ready for the ground now…or probably later…

And we’re back to the conservatory…

The NYC kids will be here 3 days!  I will be in full Grandma JoJo mode for the next couple of weeks, harvesting a super crop of love, peace, and joy with the Grandies…

Keep on Growing…

Weekly Garden Journal #13

This week the Edible Garden changed Big Time…

At this time of the season, I usually take stock of what’s working and what’s not.  Fortunately, most Everything has been producing prolifically, except for the zucchini.  I thought this year was going to be the year that broke my streak of zucchini/squash failures…I have fretted over them like babies, but I couldn’t keep away that dang fungus.  I finally pulled out the southernmost plant to buy more time for the other three.  There is still time for them to fruit…

The biggest changes are the empty bean beds…the kitchen has been invaded by green beans…

The Kentucky Wonder Pole beans are a long, flat, tasty bean and we’ve harvested a gallon or so.  Though I planned that those should be picked about now, I didn’t plan on having to bring in the second crop of bush beans this soon (we just harvested the first crop last week).  We’ve already planted the first bed with more Blue Lake (bush) and they are popping right up. I’m going to let that second bed rest for a bit while I think about what sort of cool weather crops might go there.

It’s also tough keeping up with the Roma tomatoes, so I’ve started fixing my trusty tomato salads, beginning with the easiest:  chopped roma tomatoes, chopped fresh basil, black olives, feta cheese with a red wine vinaigrette that I whip up with red wine, canola oil, fresh oregano, and garlic.  Mmmm…

The weather is Exactly the type of weather that makes me want to go to the mountains in July every year…  The garden, though, is at its neediest, so here we are.

Around on the Bird Garden Porch, I had to move the cardinal vine/black-eyed Susan vine to a shady spot for some intensive care.  The container I used was just too small and it dried out so easily where it was placed. With all the real estate opening up in the Edible Garden, I might try to plop it in the ground in a couple of weeks. The nasturtium was nearly destroyed by rain and sun, so it also was placed in intensive care.  Just to keep everybody company, I also moved all of my herbs there and I like seeing them right outside my conservatory door…

We’ve paid no attention to the banana trees, yet every week they happily unfurl new branches–if only the edibles were so easy…

Keep on Growing…

 

 

Weekly Garden Journal #12

We are Reaping what we’ve Sown…Green beans have been on the menu frequently for the last couple of weeks.  Sliced tomatoes are always available. There’s a steady supply of cucumbers and bell peppers for dipping.

This morning we pulled the last of the beans from the first planting in late April.  It was a slow start, thanks some 40degree temperatures, but it has Loved the rain, and we’ve bean eating from it for the last two weeks.  We pulled up the plants and will amend and prepare the soil for one more planting.

 

  The second planting is nearly ready for picking now.

Today’s Harvest

Photo Gallery

Keep on Growing…

Weekly Garden Journal #10

The rain stopped and we saw Sunshine yesterday!  The gardens don’t look a whole lot different, but we’re spending considerable time removing beetles and caterpillars.  The persistent rains made spraying a futile effort, but we’re still hitting them with Neem and Sevin as often as we can.  There’s very little weeding to be done thanks to thick mulch, and certainly there’s less watering this year.

We harvested several servings of green beans last week and they were delicious with some new potatoes from the Farmers Market.  Soon we’ll have more peppers and tomatoes, too, but the rain has messed up our zucchinis and we’ve had to toss some thanks to the rot.

I fix Classic cucumbers and onions in sweet vinegar every summer, but this is the first time I’ve grown cucumbers—who knew they were so easy?  Easily thrilled, I love keeping the bowl full with my very own crop.  The burpless cukes are prolific, but too obscene to photograph…

The Edible Garden

Blooms

Today is overcast, but at least bright, and I’ve got Jrs. girls for the day after spending last night with us. I hope you see the Sun Shine today!

Keep on Growing…

Garden Diary 29 July 2018

The month of July is always full of grandies enjoying Camp Sonnystone.  The garden takes a back seat, but we did manage to pote our buckets around and keep everything as watered as we could…well, almost everything.  Despite our best efforts, the lack of rain combined with the heat took its toll.

After the Jose’ fam left, we surveyed the damage and brought in whatever veggies we could, which was plenty.  Most of the yellow squash had bit the dust (literally) earlier, but there were 3 zucchini producing.  The tomatoes were covered with ripening fruit and the bell peppers are (still) carrying on.  I ended up freezing a dozen quart bags of zucch and squash, though, so I’m happy.  Now there’s one more zucchini on the last plant.

I had to take down a tomato that suddenly went yellow on me, and the better boys have slowed down, but I’m hoping they’ll get started again.  I still have dozens of tomatoes, even after making a huge greek tomato salad and slicing every chance I get.

I’ve harvested 4 pots of basil and made an ice cube tray of pesto.  There’s a pound or so of onions, and some chive put up.  Casey’s barrel of potatoes only produced a handful, but the experiment gave us great ideas of next year.

Oh, and that’s a jar of lemon verbena leaves, ready to be transformed into tea, or infused into some nice vodka.

I’m really grateful, as I know many gardeners have had worse seasons and I do have a lot to show for my work.  It’s just that vegetables are a bit of a gamble.  Yet each year I learn something new.

The flowers, though….  daisies, rudbeckia, roses (!), pineapple sage, butterfly bushes… they are blooming, attracting the birds and bugs and making me smile.

 

Casey has started a Major New Project, and I’m planning an August Extravaganza of sorts…  You’ll want to read about it over at The News from Sonnystone Acres…

Peace

 

July 2 Garden Photos

The rains continued to do our watering, perhaps a little over-zealously, until Friday last and now it’s our turn.  The garden is in Full Summer Swing…

I pulled up the first crop of green beans — about 3 lbs — and got them cleaned and ready to be snapped by Sonnystone Campers next week.  Grandpa should have plenty of new potatoes, too.

We’re over-run with Squash And Zucchini!!!  It is a regular on the menu now, and I’ve frozen a couple of lbs! The Garden Fairies Love Me Again…!

Still waiting for the tomatoes to ripen up, but that should be just in time for my visitors.  We’re leaving the garden under Jr’s care while we drive down to Disney World to pick up the Joses and bring them back for Camp Sonnystone.  They will be here until the 20th or so, and I know you’ll want to check out the Fun we’ll be having over at The News.

 

Peace