Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Garden Update: November 2012

So its been a little over a month since my last update. So much has happened this month, I was able to harvest things for the first time, and got lots of growth in my garden plots.

I took lots of photos this month on different days.

Marigold "Happy Days" Mix by Burpee, growing nicely. The soil is very sandy and this plant is doing just great. Marigolds are strong smelling and they keep insects away.

This was my first plot, which is surrounded by blocks. The marigolds are growing in the block holes. There are also various herbs and other flowers known to deter insects.

 This is some Alyssum, and German Chamomile growing in the block holes.

 In the middle, I was able to amend the soil and plant some Broccoli "Packman", cabbage "Ruby Perfection", sweet peppers "California Giant", some Kale, variety unknown, and a mix of lettuces.

Sweet peppers "California Giant". They are very tasty. Nice flavor. Except mine grew small compared to the ones you buy in the super market.

Here is a size comparison for you. This one is probably the biggest one that has grown yet. maybe half the size of the super market ones. I like the flavor, so I will be planting them next year. I attribute the small size due to the fact that these plants were in containers for many months before I transplanted them into this garden. The containers were not very big, so they probably didn't develop a huge root system needed to grow large peppers. Now they are in a garden plot, but its winter time, I doubt they will grow much more.

I have sprayed them every now and then with Epsom salt mixed with water. It definitely makes the peppers and tomatoes flower like crazy, produce more fruit, and ripen faster.

My first head of broccoli growing, "Packman" hybrid variety. This photo was taken November 17th.

One week later, November 24th,  and it has grown significantly. I also fertilized everything today, so this growth is without fertilizers.

Two days later I decided to harvest it. You need to harvest broccoli before the heads bloom. Since I never grew broccoli before I was not sure how long I could leave the head on before it blooms. Anyways, I harvested it by cutting it off the stem. It was big enough to feed 2 people. It tasted very flavorful and fresh. My first time harvesting broccoli, I was so happy.

Now onto my second plot. Significant growth. Especially for my super sweet 100 tomatoes, which have finally took and are growing lots of new leaves. I sowed the seeds in a seed tray September 20th and I'm not sure when I finally got to planting them in the garden. So they are 2 months old and are finally taking off. The estimated harvest date was supposed to be November 29th. Yea right, the plants are only like 7 inches tall. I'm not sure why they grew so slowly. maybe I should have transplanted them sooner, or direct sowed instead of the seed trays.

Blue lake bush beans #274. Doing very well. Lots of growth this month. I see some flower buds forming. Hopefully I will get lots of beans.

Swiss Chard "Neon Lights". Finally is starting to show some real growth. I direct seeded them September 23rd. I suppose you could eat the baby leaves by now. I tried some raw, very pungent greens flavor. The leaf and stem were very "juicy" and it practically exploded in my mouth. Definitely has a stronger flavor than spinach which I like to eat raw. I've never cooked swiss chard, so I better learn recipes because I don't like this raw. But makes for a very pretty plant.

This is some Bibb lettuces, Limestone variety, and some Neon Lights swiss chard.

This is some Packman broccoli in the back, and the Ruby Perfection cabbage in the front. In between and around the plants are garlic bulbs.

Baby Choi cabbages.

This is Baby Choi cabbage from Burpee. Had tons of growth this month. Unfortunately its been eaten up by bugs. I had bugs eating my lettuces too. I didn't want to use a chemical, and finally someone directed me to where I could buy diatomaceous earth. Its a very fine powder of different rocks. The powder is sharp to soft bugs like slugs, and it dries out bugs ultimately killing them. Its also all natural, organic, food grade stuff, so its not hazardous if you eat some, and helps me maintain my organic gardening goals.

I dusted all of my plots with the stuff like crazy because I've been having so much bug issues.

Here is where I dusted some of my broccoli.

I got a 10lb bag for $15 at my local feed shop. It should last me for many months if not years.

No comments:

Post a Comment