Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Garden Update

After a rough start this spring with some of the craziest weather I've ever seen our garden is beginning to look like, guess what, yes, a garden! The bean poles are up, the cucumber fence has been installed and the biggest tomatoes are caged. Ahh..to sunshine, fresh air and beautiful rain.

Pictured above are giant Alaskan Sugar Pods. They need picking today and this will make the third crop we've picked. You can eat them off the vine while you gather them, chop them in a nice salad, saute in butter or olive oil, add them to your favorite stir fry and they keep a long time in the frig.

The yellow and zucchini squash look good now, knock on wood, as for two previous years we had problems with squash bugs and vine borers. As, seen on an earlier blog we used a row cover until the blooms appeared and the plants grew too large. Also, we've sprayed them multiple times with BT Worm Killer to proactively keep these pests from destroying the produce.

The red cabbage look good and are heading, as they should. BT has been applied to keep cabbage worms away. But growing an organic garden means using a heads up approach which means monitoring the plants daily for any trespassers.

All the hot peppers like the "Chili Red" pictured above are developing just fine. Most insects or small animals don't bother hot peppers, we just watch out for blight and similar problems. I can't wait to stuff one with cheese, batter it, then bake or fry it...yummy.

Due to the 80 degree weather in February the red and white rows of potatoes did not fare well, but as I like to tell everyone, we have one potato, two potato, three potato, four....and that's true two red plants and two white plants.

However, this year we planted a row of sweet potatoes and they are doing great. I've always understood that sweet potatoes are better for you and I love pies and fries.

Jerry's watermelons look good, too.

We use a fence to grow our cucumbers. Last year we had success, as they seem to like running on a fence. It deters small animals from nibbling and helps to prevent mold and rot.

This year instead of the usual "Kentucky Wonder" green beans, we planted "Rattlesnake." They are a Georgia local favorite, just hope the name doesn't attract snakes up the poles. They look good and so far haven't encouraged pests.

Our lettuce is crisp and ready to pick now but it won't last long in the summer heat.

The two rows of heirloom tomatoes have basil, coriander and dill mixed in the rows. Also we planted some at different time intervals so our tomato crop wouldn't produce at the same time.

Last but not least, seen above is a "Bonnie" bell pepper growing in the sweet pepper row. Bell peppers have so many uses in ethnic recipes around the world.

This is a back view of the garden and now I've got to run to do some work, pick some produce and enjoy the serenity.

Until later....and another garden update..........

Happy Gardening 2012!

Posted by Wilma Smith.

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