Monday, May 24, 2010

Harvest Monday!

I had several more strawberries, but they never made it inside. This was my biggest harvest, the other ones were two or three a day, and they went straight into my belly! :)

We had two harvests of snow peas, and I'm really proud of myself for having eaten ALL of them! My peas didn't really make it last year, they would have, had I not had baby bunnies tasting the bottoms of all of them. These are the only things that I don't buy regularly from the grocery store, so I was worried that I wouldn't ACTUALLY eat them. I love them in Chinese food, but I don't make my own Chinese food. So, we had them in a chicken, mushroom alfredo pasta earlier in the week (I didn't take a picture of those). I used these in a vegetable medley (zucchini, mushrooms, onions, and snap peas) at my mom's house yesterday. My sister was in town, and it was a lot of fun to share my garden with my family!

Dreams of harvest:

I've had flowers on my squash plants daily, and slower on my zucchini. I used a q-tip to hopefully pollinate this little guy yesterday. The only male flower I had was on the zucchini, and the female obviously on the yellow squash. I was excited that my first female flower had a male flower to pollinate it (even if it was technically cross pollinating). I hope it does ok!

I've been reading a lot about megablooms on tomatoes, because so far, I have SEVERAL on several plants. I'm excited to see the mutant tomatoes that come from them, but I haven't decided if I should pull them off, and save the plant's energy for normal sized tomatoes.

Head over to Daphne's Dandelions to participate in Harvest Monday, or to see what other people are growing!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Broccoli Pest

**Thanks Michelle for following my blog!

Though I couldn't tell you what this worm/caterpillar is called, I found what was eating on my broccoli. I pulled two of these guys off last night, and a few eggs. This morning I went back out to find about 8 more of these guys, and a few more eggs.

Damage up close

More damage

More eggs

Culprits caught red handed (or green?)

Death row.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Aphids and Growth

Today is the first day that it isn't "suppposed" to rain in about two weeks. I'll keep my fingers crossed! I was able to go take a sunny peek at the garden, and I found a lot of growth, but I also found some ugly.

I found aphids on some of my tomato plants. I didn't really deal with them last year I don't think. I vaguely remember making a soap or hot sauce spray, but I think I maybe applied it once or twice? I was reading about how to eradicate them, and I'm kind of feeling overwhelmed. I definitely don't want to spray them with streams of water. They've had nothing but water for two weeks, and I don't feel overly confident about my current knowledge of the soap solutions. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

I also have something eating on my broccoli. So far, I can't actually SEE anything eating it. Is this slug damage? Something else?

The strawberry plants are really filling out, and it has been a lot of fun to see them ripen! This one may look pretty, but the part that was sitting on the ground was yucky.

So, I shared it with Solomon. :)

I've got a pea jungle now!

Here are a few that I pulled off today. I should be saving this for Harvest Monday next week, but I'm not particularly good with posting, so it's going on here now.

I've got evidence of my first yellow squash to come!
My tomato plants are vibrant and healthy, other than the aphid issue. The yellow leaves in this picture are my extra roma plants still in their newspaper pots sitting in a flat. They are so drowned from all of this rain. I don't think selling them is an option for me anymore!

My first few cherry tomatoes forming! :)
My first monster heirloom blossom is opening up today too!
AND, Here's my one and only cilantro that sprouted.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Harvest Monday!

This week's harvest includes three delicious strawberries! I also ate a few of the snap peas right from the vine, but those didn't make it inside for a picture.

I have a few cherry tomatoes forming, which I'm excited about, and I think it is just about time to harvest the buttercrunch lettuce. That's it for this week! All it does is rain, and I've weeded a bit, but not much more to say!

Join in on the Harvesting fun over at Daphne's Dandelions!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

It's a Good Day!

It is definitely a good day! I am officially a graduate nurse (technically as of yesterday)

I should probably wait until Monday for this harvest post, but oh well. I ate a few of my snap peas yesterday, and they were awesome. Heidi had to have a taste of one too. She remembers all to well how much she liked cherry tomatoes last year, and has begun to pace the garden when I go to check on it.

We also tried our very first garden strawberry this morning! It was delicious! I probably could have let it go one more day, but the difference in texture between home grown and store bought is unbelievable!

Last night, we went to check on the turtles later, because for the past several nights Eleanor has been doing "test sites" for her nesting. We went out to look and she was digging another hole. When I went to check it this morning, it was all covered up and packed in. Which typically means one thing. Eggs!

We brought them inside, as she decided the best place to lay them was right on the very TOP of our compost pile that we frequently turn. We want to make sure we find them when/if they hatch. She laid seven last year, and after one was taken by a pitch fork (the discovery of the eggs) two more were taken by ants, we brought the other four inside, and none of them hatched. We have learned a lot about eggs since then (no turning them!), and we know she has had a mating opportunity this year, we're hoping we may have a better outcome!

We marked the tops of all of the eggs this time, to make sure that when we moved them, we placed them exactly as they were laid.

This is Eleanor! Looking good the day after giving birth! :)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Take Off Day!

I should be studying. My final is tomorrow. I haven't posted in a while, and it was a while before that. I feel like I have less and less to post about, even though things are happening. Everything is in the ground now. There are a few things inside that I just haven't hardened off yet (basil, a few of the peppers and a few petunias). I still plan to put some more squash and zucchini seeds in the ground, I just haven't been very motivated to do it because the garden looks "fully planted" I still have some of the extra tomato plants sitting around on the garden, and that's probably my issue. They are filling the extra spots where the last of my seeds should go in.

Last Saturday was take off day for the robins. I watched them for hours! I got to see the last two fly out of the nest, and watch as the parents and several other robins show them the ropes. I brought worms to a few of them, and got to watch them eye the wigglers and nibble on them.

Last baby to take off! I was really excited to catch this picture!
Baby by the mailbox, with parents watching out.

One of the babies made its way into the turtle pen.

We were sitting in the living room in the evening, and we thought we heard a bird IN the house, but one of the babies had just returned to the porch and spent some time crying for momma. I haven't seen any of them since that night. Though I love to watch them, I'm glad to not have to worry about the dive bombing parents when I walk to my mailbox.

I have hopes of a harvest in the near future:

My snaps peas have blossoms everywhere, and there are little baby peas showing up!

My first strawberry is also blushing :)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Major Update

Besides the fact that in a week I'll finally be graduating from nursing school, my in-laws came in town this weekend from Pennsylvania. That means I've had no time to update this, even though I've spent a lot of time outside, and in the garden a bit. My husband and I worked really hard to get some things done before they got here.

Here's a picture of all of the work my husband did. He dug out all of the dirt here, and helped me plant all of the plants. We have a lot of bulbs and lilies that we planted too, but they'll hopefully be popping up later.

I now have my first tomato blossom! This is from my Sweet 100 Cherry tomato.

The baby birds are growing like crazy! Their mom and dad hate it when I take these pictures, and I inevitably squeal as I run back inside the front door when they dive bomb me.

I'm going to try to show a few side by sides from April 26 to today. In just over a week, I've seen tons of growth.

We were able to build and install the removable structure with bird netting for the strawberry patch. It's loaded with strawberries now, and I have no interest in sharing them with the local birds, bunnies, squirrels, or wandering cat.

We had our first pea blossom this year, and now we have many!! I was surprised to see it open, because it was pink! Last year we had only white ones, so I assumed that was the only kind. This year we have both, because I planted the Dwarf Gray sugar too.

I really need to get my pepper, squash, eggplant, watermelon, cantaloupe, and cucumbers in the ground. I'll do all of that today. I have all of these other tomato plants to get to friends, they are really starting to look funky. I don't know if it's just all of the rain, but the rest of my tomato plants really need to get into the ground!

This was last weeks harvest, I missed Harvest Monday this week. I used these radishes in a veggie pizza recipe from Pampered Chef for church. We also ate all of that lettuce in a salad! It's fun to finally get somethings that we can eat from our garden!