Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Garden Update - Farmer's Market Mysteries

Since I haven't done a garden update in a couple of weeks, this week got split up into 2 updates since there was a little too much for a single post. The harvest has been great overall, and I'm still kind of in shock that it has been working out.

Before I get to the actual garden stuff, I thought I'd share some pictures of my gardening buddy:
Nom nom nom - I heart watermelon!
Hmmm, I would enjoy it more if mom wasn't pointing that camera thing at me constantly.
Ok, mom - for reals now - this is getting old!!!

The watermelon keeps her occupied for a good half hour or more, then I put her in the Little Tikes wagon with a couple of toys and she is occupied for another half hour. Plenty of time for momma to weed, harvest, prune, and take photos! If I take any longer, then dirt is inevitably digested.
Onto the garden stuff!

First up are my peppers. They have been very successful and continue to be. The most abundant have been the banana peppers (I think):
These plants were sold to me as yellow bell peppers at the farmer's market. Obviously they aren't bell peppers. I am not disappointed because the banana peppers are great too, but this wasn't the only questionable plant from that particular farmer. . . more on that later. I have harvested about 8 banana peppers so far and I have several more that are ready to harvest this week. Good thing we are a pepper loving family! The plants sold to me by that same farmer as green bell peppers are actually yielding green bell peppers:
They are a little small for harvesting still, but they should be golden by next week. . . Golden as in good to go, not in color (this duh moment has been brought to you by sleep deprivation).

This plant was sold as an orange bell pepper:
It also is looking rather questionable.
The picture above was taken a week ago and the one below yesterday:
Not a huge difference, but it is definitely looking pointy versus bell-y

The one I'm super glad was labelled correctly was the purple bell pepper plant:
They are such a cool deep purple, like an eggplant.
I have harvested one of these and have a couple more on deck for next week. Yum!

Then we come up to the green beans. My precious little green beans grown from mere seedlings (I get a little sentimental sometimes). I have been watching these plants grow and flower for a few weeks now, but haven't paid to much attention. I thought they were taking their sweet time and weren't going to produce any actual green beans for another couple of weeks. Then, sometime last week I actually looked under the leaves and to my amazement there were green beans galore:
 I have been happily harvesting them all week . . . :
. . . and have been making them into yummy meals like this chicken alfredo with green beans:
There are still a whole bunch left to harvest so I should have them for a few weeks to come.

My radishes have come and gone. I did get to harvest many of them and we enjoyed them thoroughly. I left one plant unharvested. It gave me some pretty white flowers:
It also gave me some seed pods so I may see if I can plant another round this year since they grow so quickly:

The cucumber plant that has also grown from seeds is growing well too. Here it is almost 2 weeks ago:
 Here it is  yesterday:
Under all the leaves there are several flowers:
I think there will be lots of cucumbers to harvest soon enough.

Next on the tour is mystery plant extraordinaire. You may remember them as the spinach plants that weren't doing so well a while back. At the time of my last garden update they were improving:
Following that, they really took off. . . and over:
The funny thing is that as far as I know, spinach doesn't grow this way.

I lost the label from the farmer's market, but it was labelled as a weird variety of spinach. Not knowing anything about plants, I trusted that this was indeed the case. Now I'm not so sure. If anyone out there has any idea what this plant is, please help me out. It is very rubbery in texture. Here some better pictures taken yesterday:
They are growing rather large:
I am weary to eat them until I find out what they are and if they are edible.
I found a website where you can post pictures and descriptions of unknown plants, and people who might actually know what they're doing (unlike me) help ID them.

The brussel sprout plants are growing very fast, but I don't have high hopes for an actual yield. You see, after purchasing them, planting them, and watching them grow for a few weeks, I read online that they are cold weather crops and don't do well in high heat. Live and learn I guess.

The celery hasn't changed much since last update either, so I figured I would skip the pictures of that too.

The herbs are doing fantastic. I have been harvesting from them like crazy and cooking them into most of our daily meals so they are mostly just looking ragged now. . . but in a good way.

The final plant in the lineup are my eggplant plants. They are doing rather awesome. A couple of weeks ago they flowered and then the flowers fell of and gave way to these:
Which in turn grew into these:
I harvested my first pair yesterday:
One went to my mom and the other into a stew for dinner.

They have been amazing and there are many more that are almost ready to harvest in the coming week. Time to brush up on my eggplant parm recipe!

Phew, glad you actually made it through all of that. Thanks for reading, hopefully I didn't put you to sleep. I'll be back with baby/toddler cuteness tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. Superb Piece of Website, you have here. I am so lucky to run into your blog by way of google queries. I just bookmarked to read all of your posts.


I'd love to hear from you!