Sunday, May 1, 2011

Garden Update

It's been a busy week, and my husband has been good about hogging the computer and camera because the semester is winding down for him.  I have definitely had some time to do some gardening though!  I'm sorry this will probably be a long post, and probably heavy on the pictures.

Gardening evidence

Thursday 4/28:
Transplanted all 20 tomatoes and 20 peppers, as well as three marigolds, and a basil plant. *I decided that whatever it was that was harming my tomatoes (which no one could seem to really get an idea about... best guess was edema) hadn't killed them yet, there was no wilting, and what was left looked as if it had "hardened over", I figured I'd bite the bullet and put them in the ground before I'd waited too long.

I also was able to bring over the transplants to Mandi to fill her second 4 by 8 bed.  It's nice to see things filling out in her bed. I go over there about once a week.  It's so much fun to see a weeks worth of growth at a time!

This was a three hour gardening evening.  It was a lot of work, but worthwhile.  I have the most ridiculous looking tomato stakes out there (culled lumber at Home Depot- 20 8 ft 1x2's cost me around $3.00) They'll work though, and since I still can't find myself a nursing job, saving money is a higher priority than things looking nice.

Part of the work included gathering up this year's potential Maple Forest-- I have two maple trees around my house, and another in the neighbors' yard, so everywhere gets loaded with those helicopter seeds. I don't feel I had as many to pick up as last year.  Maybe they're not all down yet. I'm hoping it's not that.

Saturday 4/30:
I stole Granny's idea with pots from Dollar Tree, drilled holes in them, and transplanted two zucchini, and two yellow squash.  I know 2.5 gallons is nowhere near the right size for squash, but I don't want to be feeding the neighbors with squash, and my broccoli is nowhere NEAR done, as I had hoped... (which is where I had planned to interplant my squash initially) so it's an experiment.  Who doesn't love a good experiment every now and then.  I know I'll be watering them at least twice a day once our June and July heat rolls around, but I wanted to give it a try. My squash was obliterated by the combination of squash bugs and squash vine borers last year, that I figure using containers may be an easier way to contain pests.

I wasn't planning on doing more than those four plants that day, and my husband was hoping to leave after I was finished to go to make a Home Depot trip, but he had to ask me if I was going to put the rest of the pots on the patio away now, since I'd planted in those four. I told him I had plans for them, and away those plans went.

I potted up cilantro, and garlic chives into one pot (the other one in the photo with the zucchini)

I put impatiens in another, and a cayenne pepper in another one. (I didn't have room for the cayenne pepper in my garden, and I read peppers do well in containers anyway)

That got the ball rolling, so that's when I planted some of the basil into the ground, some more cilantro went into the ground, as well as a few cucumber transplants.

(Edamame and bush beans were up today as well!)

Sunday 5/1:  All tomatoes and peppers (and any other plants I have grown for others) have been delivered, with the exception of my next-door neighbor, but she just got back from vacation, and didn't want to plant them just yet. I still have close to 20 extra tomatoes, and a few jalapenos left.  I think the neighbor next to them is going to at least be offered a few plants.  I am constantly getting requests for tomatoes, and they are putting "dibs" on my strawberries this year, so I think I'm going to let them grow some of their own! :)  (If I have runners from my strawberries that I can give them this year, I plan to do that as well!!) Fortunately, I should be in excess with my strawberries this year, the plants are just LOADED with blossoms and small berries already!

I have had some small harvests, and have been able to use some in meals, but I'll save those pictures for tomorrow.

I can hardly believe it is May already! We're going to have to start watching our turtles behavior in the evening.  It's about the time for egg laying, and I don't want to miss it and end up tossing eggs around in the compost pile when it gets turned! It was May 13th last year when Eleanor laid her clutch of eggs, and May 20 something the year before. We've got 4 females, who we KNOW have the opportunity to have had them fertilized this year, so we're going to be on the lookout! I am REALLY hoping for some little turtle babies this year!


  1. Looks great! I'm right there with you on the tomato stakes, mine look like yours LOL! It will be fun comparing our tomato jungles this year and since we are a one income family I'm in full agreement on the saving money! The tomatoes will still come and still taste delicious, it just might take us a little longer to find them all this year :)

  2. I think it was a very busy week for all of us gardeners. Your garden is looking great! Boy I wish that our strawberries were that far along!

    I am really having a time with my tomato plants this year too! Mine are not the dark green like they always are. I have no idea what is going on with them. Granny is also having some tomato plant issues.

  3. You have been one busy girl! How come you lucked out and got blue pots from the dollar store? All they had here were black or bright red! I have about ten empty ones in the shed, as I ran out of compost and potting mix. I haven't yet decided if they'll be used or not, I've had to put out so much $$$ on bagged potting soil this year. Anyway, your garden is looking great.

  4. A frugal way to stake tomatoes is the best way, in my opinion...I personally don't pay any attention to how others see my garden - most visitors think i'm half crazy anyway. Ha!

  5. Erin- Those tomatoes absolutely will still come! It will most certainly be a jungle... it always is! :)

    Robin- Your strawberries will be this far along this time next year. This is my second year for these plants, so they are nicely established now. They were slow to get going last year too, but those first berries were so exciting! My tomatoes didn't stay dark green much either, they didn't have any trouble getting hardened off because they got to do that when they were mere seedlings from a week of warm weather at the right time, but I am hoping they bounce back now that they're in the ground!

    Granny- They had the black ones like you have, and these ones are actually gray, though they do appear blue in the picture, maybe they're a gray/blue. I figured it was best to avoid the extra heat that black would bring to those roots. I'm sure you'll end up finding some way to use at least a few of them! Although, your garden is a lot bigger than mine, and you don't have quite the space issue of trying to "fit it all in". I think that may be a problem no matter what the size of your garden. :)

    EG- It's the only way for me! You aren't right up against your neighbors front of their house though either. Ours is a corner house, which is why it backs up to them the way that it does, so they have to see it every time they pull into their driveway. At least they have gotten to enjoy planting some of their own as well when I plant extras. :) Crazy is good sometimes, right?