Garden Update – May Edition

It is imperative that you see my garden before all the squash bugs, cabbage worms and potato beetles destroy it.  It is so beautiful!

garden may 2

All the perennials around the garden are getting ready to explode in color and I can hardly stand it.  I am enjoying the view so much.  I sit in my garden.  I stand outside my garden.  I gaze at my garden from the porch, from my house, from the driveway.

I love my garden………..  until the bugs and droughts and diseases rear their ugly heads.  Which will be shortly.
garden may 12

They have not come yet, so I will inhale the wonder while it lasts.

garden may 4

The onions are getting huge.  I HATE weeding onions.  The stalks just don’t provide enough coverage to shade the ground, so the weeds are bountiful.

I’m sick and tired of weeding them so I mulched.  Mulch is a great thing if you don’t like to weed.  Just grab some hay, straw, newspapers, leaves, cardboard, or whatever organic material (that won’t sprout) you have available.  Scatter the mulch on the ground around the plants.

My son cleaned out the chicken coop yesterday, so he delivered a wheelbarrow full of hay, old bedding, and chicken poop to my garden.  Yea!  Mulch!

It is important to note that if there are seeds (that you planted) underground who will be arriving soon – don’t mulch. Mulch will most likely prevent them from growing.  Mulching only happens after the seeds have come up & there are plants to mulch around.

garden may

Garlic is the only plant I hate weeding as much as I hate weeding onions.  Same problem.  No shade.  I mulched them too.  garden may 5

Salad anyone?  We are eating salad every day and there is more of it than I know what to do with.  I planted a second crop of radishes in front of the lettuce (on the left).  You can see it’s just beginning to germinate.  We have probably eaten more than our share of radishes this year.  RADISH

We planted these “Easter Egg” radishes and the kids love them.  They are sweet and juicy with a little kick.  I even cut them in half and fry them in lard with potatoes and onions (salt & pepper).  Delicious!!

 

garden may 6

Turnips are coming along.
garden may 7

My spinach.  Because I’m an idiot I pulled up all my spinach when it first sprouted.  I forgot where I had planted it and thought it was weeds.

So I had to plant it again.  Then it took forever to germinate and I thought bugs had eaten the seeds, so I planted another row.  Both rows finally came up.  Now, I live in spinach land.  It’s ok, because I can make:

  • Spinach salad
  • Wilted Greens salad
  • Spinach with hot bacon dressing
  • Creamed spinach

Yum, I like spinach.
garden may 8

The Sugar Snap Peas are almost as tall as I am.  There’s lots of flowers – so we’ll have peas soon.garden may 9

Potatoes.  Do you ever plant potatoes?  These are Irish Cobbler.  Creamy, buttery, wonderful.  We use a post-hole digger to plant our potatoes 12 inches deep.

You will hear me doing TONS of complaining when it’s time to dig up the potatoes, it’s almost as miserable as weeding onions.

My kids like to pretend they are pioneer children and dig for potatoes, so I’ll probably let them do it.

Between now and digging time the potatoes will do some cool things.  These full gorgeous plants will all get big pink flowers on them.  Then the flowers and the entire tops will die.  The potato bed will be a dessert (waiting for the weeds to invade).  Totally nothing above ground.  Just dirt.  The first year I grew potatoes I thought I had killed them all.  Nope.

Underground there are tiny potatoes becoming giant potatoes for me to eat.  In August or September we dig them up.  I usually wait until it’s not 100 degrees out.  Since I think digging for potatoes sucks.

garden may 10

Kale!  Easy, easy, easy to grow.  Hard to kill.  We had a pretty cold winter and one of my kale plants came back this spring.  It’s not supposed to live if it gets below 5 degrees.  Kale will live in 5 degrees, though, which is pretty impressive.  We will eat kale (unfortunately for my children) from these plants until Christmas.

Yes, I am sneaking it into all sorts of things around here.  It is a super-food.  It tastes terrible, but with enough dressing, garlic, flavoring, or sneakiness – it goes down with everything else!garden may 11

Tomatoes!  When I planted these (not too long ago) they were just tops barely sticking out of the soil.  See tomato planting here.

garden may 3

I plant my green peppers (and all my other peppers) like tomatoes.  I rip off all the lower branches & plant them as deep as I can with only the tops sticking out.  I planted these guys the same time as the tomatoes.  
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I hope you are enjoying this spring.  Even if you don’t have a garden, you can grow your own food.  It just takes ingenuity and imagination.  If you have landscaping around your home – you can grow food.  If you have some containers on your back porch – you can grow food.  

Vegetable plants can be as beautiful as they are functional.  Think: purple cabbage, vining decorative gourds, pickle-bush, and strawberry plants.  Just as pretty as they are delicious!

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Happy Gardening Everyone!

Candi

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