Sunday, 1 June 2008

Big Garden, Little Garden: June 2008

This bean poked its head out of the soil just this afternoon, because when I went out to water the garden this morning, it wasn't there yet. Sprouts are sprouting up all over the big garden in the last few days! It's been quite exciting (to me, anyway) to see what will pop up next.

The first to arrive were the radishes, even though I planted those a week later than everything else - they are speedy little guys! The corn is coming up, along with the peas and squash I planted along with them in their section of the garden.

In the hopes of deterring deer, I planted some marigolds around the perimeter of the garden, along with some garlic bulbs. I picked out the stinkiest marigolds I could find at the local garden greenhouse, and along with the garlic, well, so far so good.

The carrots are coming up as well, and so are the leeks, cucumbers and cantaloupe. I haven't seen any sign of the turnips yet - they must be slower growers. The potatoes and the pumpkins haven't sprouted yet either, but I planted them a bit later than the rest of the stuff.

The Little Garden is doing pretty well too - the wheat, barley and oatgrass are growing like crazy, and so are the garlic and onions. There are some carrots in there as well, which need thinning by the looks of it, and the celtuce and two kinds of beets are also coming along nicely.

My tomato seedlings got a bit cooked when I set them outside to harden off and then forgot to water them. They've come back somewhat, but as insurance I picked up a tomato plant at the garden greenhouse when I bought the marigolds, and planted it in a 5 gallon bucket, like I did last year.

My whiskey barrell plantings have also turned out really well - I've harvested a bit of the kale already for our guinea pigs, Scooter and Sophie, and they chomped down every bit! I put a few marigolds in those planters as well, for good measure. The leaf beats and chard are a bit slow in coming, but they're moving along too. And the lettuce and spinach are looking nice in the other planter.
It's amazing what you can grow in a small patch of earth and a few containers!


kale for sale said...

It is amazing what can be grown in a few pots and containers which is the extent of my garden. But I rejoice in each new happening the same as you in the big garden. It's too fun. I'm growing tomatillas for the first time and am convinced if I could stay still for a solid ten minutes I would actually be able to see them grow.

CindyW said...

Your plants look beautiful!

Our marigolds are not doing so well. Neither are our tomatos or peppers :( At the begining of planting season, we decided againgst raised bed and did hard labor to dig, double dig and condiction the soil. We have extremely clay soil, enriching it has been hard.

We also decided againgst getting seedlings. Growing from seeds was a purist's dream :) Well these purists aren't very experienced. Maybe we bit way more than we could chew.

At least strawberries, beans and lettuces are thriving...

DC said...

Your garden looks great, Theresa. By the way, you probably already know this, but you can greatly extend your growing season by putting row cover over your raised beds in the fall. It lets light and water in but insulates the plants from frost. We used some of it early this spring, and it saved some of our young plants during a cold snap. You can also make or buy cold frames for your beds to extend the season even longer. I know someone in zone 5 who has done this, and he is able to grow lettuce the entire winter.

Keep up the good work!

Theresa said...

Kale, yes rejoicing is a good word for it! It continues to amaze me what happens when you put some seeds in some soil and add water and sun!

Thanks Cindy. My marigolds got a bit of sunburn the day after I planted them in the big garden - it's sunnier there than I thought! Some of the things I've grown from seed turned out ok, but mostly they're spindly and I did cook my tomato seedlings a bit, although they're still alive. I'm drooling over greenhouses now, for next year, but I'm not sure if that is feasible.

DC, I do think I will be able to do some kind of hoop house or cold frame set up when Fall comes. I've been been learning a bit about that at the CSA farm and from other bloggers, and I'm trying to think up of a way to construct something that will work out of mostly scrap things we have around here already, like some free scrap lumber we got and some pvc tubing we found on our property left over from when the house was built.

I got a bit carried away at Canadian Tire yesterday and bought some soaker hoses as part of a 'drip irrigation system' I'm attempting to make work in the garden. Watering it by spraying with the hose just takes too long and a lot of the water seems to evaporate before it hits the dirt. I'm having lots of fun figuring things out!

Apple Jack Creek said...

Hi! How neat to meet someone nearby via Sharon's blog. :)

Am I seeing this picture right ... you have wheat growing in a square foot? I have some wheat seeds but haven't quite figured out where to plant them. I figured if nothing else, the chickens would be happy to eat the grain come fall, and maybe I'd get creative & try to do something with it.

Off to check the garden! You've got me inspired!

Theresa said...

Hi there Apple Jack - yes, I thought that was quite a circuitous route to connect to someone local as well!

I do have some wheat there in the square foot garden - I wanted to try a few things out and the little garden is now sort of my experimental garden. I've got flax and barley in there too, just for fun! I thought this year I would just collect the seed.

Anonymous said...

Your gardens are beautiful. Very interesting about the marigolds deterring deer. My Dad's place gets lots of deer and he's always trying to build contraptions to keep them out. I'll pass this tip along...

Theresa said...

RA, I've put some garlic in there too, next to the marigolds. I'm not entirely sure if the deer just haven't bothered with the garden, or if these stinky plants really do work. But so far, so good! The deer did munch on some of the new trees we planted, so I cobbled up a contraption too, of tomato cages and sticks to keep their teeth away from my saplings!