Thursday, June 16, 2011

More Green Thumb Goodness

I hope to finish off the two part post tomorrow so hang tight on that one. In the meantime, I am incredibly happy to report that the garden is continuing to do very well!

My garden this morning

The last couple days have been particularly great because the weather has been an ideal (for the plants, not me) blend of sun and rain. I had gotten a little neglectful in terms of weeding this week, but luckily nothing was too crazy and a half hour of work nipped most of the little green invaders in the bud (pun intended).

Let's start with the most exciting part of my day so far. . . I actually got to harvest something today! Yay!!! I was in the middle of weeding when I noticed that the radishes that were planted from seeds mid May were looking awfully crowded. I figured I hadn't thinned them enough after they started sprouting so I went to pull a few out. Lo and behold I found this:
Well hi there. . . you look like a radish!

I was super excited! I whipped out my phone and googled "growing radishes". I wanted to know if there was anything that I might need to know before harvesting them. The first page I clicked on suggested harvesting the radishes once they get to be a little larger than a grape. It also suggested putting them straight into a bucket of cold water while harvesting so I went and grabbed one.
Beautiful isn't it? *Sniffle*

I ended up harvesting only ten for now, but there are several on the verge of being ready too.
I can't believe that in less than a month I went from these scrappy little seedlings with heart shaped leaves to these beautiful brightly colored radishes that I will definitely be making in a salad later today.

Enough about the radishes for now. I'm just extra excited because they are my first harvested plant that wasn't an herb. Speaking of herbs, I purchased a few more at the farmer's market last Wednesday. They are still recovering from the transplant so they aren't flourishing yet but they aren't dying either so I'm happy with that.
Italian Parsley

Valentino Basil

Red Rubin Basil (can't ever have too much basil!)

Greek Oregano

My other herbs are doing well. The Chives have flowered in the last couple of weeks. I have had this Chive plant for a couple of years now and this is the first time I have seen it flower:
They are pretty little violet colored flowers and according to google, they are edible. I may grab some for a salad sometime soon.

My basil that I planted a while back is also flowering:
This is not such a good thing since the leaves stop growing when the plant flowers so I snapped the picture and then cut that bad boy off. I actually knew that without having to look it up amazingly enough.

Right next to the basil plant I found one of these:
Sorry little Maple but you were not invited to this party!
I don't mean to be rude, but I'm pretty sure a Maple tree would not work out so well in the middle of my veggie garden. These two were evicted without any notice.

Up alongside most of the herbs are my cucumber seedlings which are sprouting beautifully after being planted a couple of weeks ago:

The plant that is doing the worst is my spinach which has been planted for almost a month now:
This is one of them but they all are struggling. I think I will just let them go and hopefully they'll recover. If that doesn't work I'll research it more in depth for next year. We eat a lot of spinach around here so I would like to perfect that one eventually.

On the middle tier, my tomato plants are all doing well. This end was only planted two weeks ago and it seems that they have gotten past the shock of transplanting and are starting to grow:
If I remember correctly this side has Early Girls and Romas.

Then there is the other end of the tomato tier. These plants I planted a month ago and they are doing great.
The most robust one is this purple heirloom:
I will be so excited if I get good tomatoes from this one since the heirlooms are known for being more difficult to grow.

I'm loving the pretty Marigolds all over:
I have no idea if they are helping at all but I can say that I have had no bug or rabbit problems thus far (knock on wood) so I like to think they are at least contributing. 
If not. . . at least they're pretty!

Finally we move on to the lowest tier.

My brussel sprouts were planted a couple of weeks ago. They were looking rather scraggly a week ago but now are bouncing back beautifully:

The eggplant is also looking fantastic:
 I can just about taste the eggplant parmesan now!

The celery is doing great too:
 I guess it tends to be a less hardy plant so I'm relieved that they haven't all withered away by now under my watch.

The carrots are trucking along:

. . . as are my beautiful green beans:
The green beans two weeks ago:

My peppers were struggling too for a bit but are looking nice now:
. . . and look: 
A baby pepper! So exciting!!! I'm such a dork.

Last but not least are the Topsy Turvy plants. They are doing smashingly well too!

Check out the awesome tomato plants:
It is hard to tell from this photo, but the two oldest plants are huge and have really nice thick stems. They are flowering all over too which means tomatoes on the way soon. The newer plants are doing well, but they have a ways to go yet before they start to flower. The two big'uns are nicer than any of the plants in the actual garden. In the background of the above photo you can also see the strawberry planter.

The strawberries are starting to turn as of yesterday:
I can't wait to have Kaelan pick some and enjoy the home grown strawberries!

That is it for this state of my garden update. I know it isn't everyone's cup of tea, but I highly recommend trying it on a small scale even if you have never grown anything in your life. The Topsy Turvies are great for beginners. I found gardening to be incredibly boring before I decided to dive in and give it a go. Now look at me; I'm giddy over peppers and misty eyed over radishes!

Hopefully I will be able to continue bringing wonderful and positive updates full of delicious fruits and veggies successfully grown and harvested. If you missed out on the previous posts regarding the garden, check out this, this, and then this post.


  1. What a lovely garden! If the stakes don't work for you with the tomatoes (they never worked well in my mom's garden), I would suggest getting tomato cages. They're easy to maintain too.
    We used to do the marigold trick... it worked great the first couple years, then the bunnies & squirrels said "screw it, I'm goin' in," and dug up all the beans seeds to eat and ate the tops off the peas!
    Another fun one to try is potatoes!

  2. Your garden is beautiful! I've never been able to grow anything, but I think I might give it a try next year.


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