Garden 2012 – Week Ten

Hello, happy people!

 It’s been yet another week, and things are just getting more and more exciting on our little patio. 

 First of all, look at what the Hungarian sweets have been up to! 

They’re far from alone. All of those teeny Fresnos just starting out last week are plumping up nicely.


I even clipped our first two peppers, in order to encourage the others to grow even bigger.  I can’t wait to put them in a nice salsa. 

Not to be left out, the Jalapenos have shot way up, and we even have a veeeeeery tiny pepper developing there, too, although it’s tough to get on camera at the moment.  (It must be shy.)


The peppers are hardly the only ones to have sprouted fruit.  Remember that lone sweet million cherry tomato from last week?  Well this week a handful of siblings burst onto the scene.  They are once again difficult to see, being hidden under, and virtually the same color as, the leaves.  If you look closely, though, you can see at least four roundish, marble-like shapes. 


And what do we have here? 


It’s Legz! 


Legz has babies; I can’t wait to eat them!

 Erm…yeah.  That sounds waaaaay more wrong than I anticipated.  Perhaps I need to stop humanizing my plants.  (If anyone needs me, I’ll be unraveling the tiny cardigans I’ve been knitting for the nasturtiums.)

 Take a gander at these fiiiiine-looking garden peas. 


Just below those peas, is the cucumber zone.  The fruit pictured from last week is still kind of small, but it’s grown enough that it’s easier to see now. 

Here’s a closer look.  

There are actually two cucumber plants in “the zone”, but they have gotten so intertwined that it’s tough to tell them apart.  Just look at how many blossoms these beauties have now! 



Bro explained to me that some cuke blossoms are male, and some female, and one has to pollinate the other (I’ll let you figure out which way that works).  So although we have about a gazillion blossoms here, even if conditions were 100% perfect and none of them dropped, we’d still really only be looking at half a gazillion actual fruit.   I believe the same will be true of the crookneck squash when they start blooming. 

The above crook is literally climbing the wall, and doing so very quickly.  It’s almost up to the top shelf of the tomato shade, and soon it’s going to be a real challenge to scoot past it in order to tend to the rest of the plants.  It’s hard to believe it was started from seed!

Also grown from seed, the tomatillos have suddenly taken off this week.  Bro bent them down, but they wouldn’t have it.  By the next day, they’d straightened up again.  He said they grow like weeds in warm climates.  I have a feeling I’m about to learn that he was very, very right. 

The week wasn’t without its flubs.  Like a bonehead, I was moving something large and unwieldy on the patio, knowing full well that I had very limited space to work with.  Sure enough, the edge caught the pot with the Swiss chard, sending it toppling from its perch, and taking a tub of chard seedlings from a lower shelf with it.  The poor things landed perfectly upside down.  I did my best to put everything back where had been, but I wasn’t able to save it all.  Indeed, I may have killed the lovely swiss chard we had growing.  

I felt horrible.  Bro tried to console me by saying, “Eh, it’s just a plant.”  Just a plant?  JUST a plant?!  It was a living thing that we’d cared for and nurtured and had eagerly watched as it grew.  Also, her name was Helga, and she might have had a fondness for cotton blends.  (I know, I know….  Unraveling.  =sigh=) 

If there is a plus side to my committing reckless, involuntary vegicide, it is that I can confirm that our mulch is doing its job.  The soil that tumbled from the chard pot was nicely damp, in spite of it being a warm, sunny day.  So…yay…? 

 That reminds me, I just finished reading The Good Food Revolution[link to book?], the autobiography of urban farming pioneer Will Allen, and one of the things that stuck with me was something he said in passing about fungus.  He said that having mushrooms[link to mushrooms blog] in your soil was actually a good sign because it meant that the moisture content was correct.  Guess that means we’re good there, too.

 Fortunately, the rest of the news from our little garden is positive.  The chives I mowed last week have grown back with a vengeance.


The cilantro is coming back, too, although it’s not doing quite as well as the chives.  I don’t know if that’s due to me cutting it back too far or the position it’s in these days.  Might be getting more sun than it likes.  We’ll have to watch and see.


The basil has been doing beautifully.  I LOVE caprese sandwiches (kind of addicted right now, actually), so having a ton of fresh basil to pluck and eat has been wonderful. And as I’ve said before, it’s good for the plant to pull a leaf here and there.  So win, win!


And that is about it for the tenth week of Garden 2012.   See you back here next week!


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