Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Monday, June 28, 2010

First Sunflower of 2010

The first sunflower has made its appearance. Some of the petals still need to open, but here it is! So pretty. You can see how tall they get, even in containers. Matt's 6 feet tall, and they're about that height if you take away the pot.
I'm anxiously waiting to see what the red sunflowers look like. They're not very tall, maybe 3 feet? They come up to my waist.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Today's Harvest

We harvested a bunch of purple beans today. Last week we only picked 4, but today we picked about a handful (estimated 1/2 lb or so). We also picked another 4 squash--3 yellow and 1 Lebanese variety of zucchini (the pale green one). I'm keeping track of what we harvest on the "Harvest to Date" link up top.

The other drama...there are hornets making a nest near our deck. They need to go. Matt's out there taking care of them right now. And some sad news--a poor little squirrel got tangled in the net around the blueberries, and sadly it didn't make it. We picked the last 4 or 5 blueberries that were ripe and took the net down. I wanted to keep critters out, but I don't want any of them to die. They can have the rest of the blueberries. We picked about a pint, which is good enough for me.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The problem with strawberries...

...is that birds and squirrels like to eat them!

I went outside to water my plants the other day and my neighbor came outside and said, "There was a squirrel digging into one of your plants and eating something red."  She sloshed her wine glass in the general direction of my strawberry plant, and sure enough, 2 of the 3 strawberries were missing. Curse the squirrel!

We've had bad luck with our strawberry plants.  We're growing them in containers, and one set had bad soil or something, and the plants died quickly. The other plants just didn't take off. They had blossoms but no fruit, then finally I saw three little berries growing on a plant on Saturday, and I left them there, thinking they might get bigger. Three days later--gone. :(

My strawberries, June 19. At least I have a picture for memories.

Last strawberry standing--of course they left the funky one.

These pictures are all that remains.

Monday, June 21, 2010

A trickle and then a flood...

On Saturday we picked squash, about 5 grape tomatoes, and the first few purple pole beans.  I'm anxiously waiting for the rest of the grape tomatoes to ripen. Last year we had a small handful and then suddenly they were all ready at the same time, and we often found ourselves with more tomaotes that we knew what to do with.  I'm always amazed at how quickly things grow--one day we'll see a little yellow crookneck squash just starting to grow, and by the end of the week it's ready to be picked and eaten. I love it!

left to right: purple pole beans, tomatoes, 2 crookneck yellow squash, butterstick zucchini; all harvested 6/19

Now for the main event---the big squash harvest! Somehow between Saturday and today (Monday) FIVE more squash were ready to be picked.  I ordered a variety pack of squash seeds from Burpee (found here).  We harvested one of each variety today!
left to right: zucchini, yellow crookneck, sweet gourmet hybrid zucchini, zucchini, butterstick (another zucchini variety)--all harvested today 6/21

Now for the fun part--cooking them up to see how they taste! According to Burpee's site, the Butterstick and Sweet Gourmet Hybrid should have a light nutty taste. We'll see about that.

Other pictures--the first is the Butterstick growing in our raised bed. The second is of the crookneck yellow squash we're growing in containers.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Tomato Plant Progress

So far we have harvested 5 tomatoes! The grape tomatoes are growing nicely and I hope they ripen soon. The pink beefsteak plants each have several fruit. I can't wait to see if they really are pink. And the patio princesses are growing quickly. I see blooms on both the plants, so I expect to see little cherry tomatoes growing in the next few weeks.

patio princess May 27

patio princess June 15

first few cherry tomatoes on the patio princess variety

a cluster of the grape tomatoes

This angle reminds me of a roller coaster hill. You can see some grape tomaotes in various stages of ripening.

Grape tomatoes at night, after a very hard rain. We went outside to make sure none of the plants were damaged. Everything was fine, although the pink beefsteaks needed to be staked for better support.

Night time shot of a regular old tomato plant. As of today, this plant has yielded 6 tomatoes!

pink beefsteak June 7
Within 5 days the smaller tomato in the picture grew, and a brand new one sprouted (June 12)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Butterfly Bush and Beans in Bloom

The hard rain last night pulverized a lot of our plants, but some of the butterfly bush blooms remained in tact.

In addition to regular bell peppers, we're growing a variety called Fajita Bell. Not sure what they'll taste like, maybe they'll have a little kick? These are the flowers on the plant. You can see a few of the peppers starting to form.

These are the flowers on the purple pole beans. I love that pink and purple! But I hope some actual beans start growing soon.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

First Harvest 2010

Last weekend we harvested our first few crops--a couple of tomatoes, some yellow squash, and about 10 blueberries.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Garden Check-up - Week 9

Week 9 Progress Report: sunflowers are growing tall enough to provide a little privacy (that's my kitty in the background)

 "J" for "Jalapeno"

Cucumber plants, with jalapeno in the foreground

Squash plants with purple pole beans in background

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I Dream of Pancakes

We took lots of pictures of the garden over Memorial Day weekend as different plants are in various stages of growth. Some of the blueberries are still green, but some are turning a nice shads of blue.
What the blueberry blooms looked like: