Monday, July 01, 2013

How my garden grows...?

...Like a jungle, if you're talking about weeds.

In an effort to not get dehydrated, instead of just taking a large water bottle outside for my Saturday gardening efforts, I also took an entire pitcher of water, plus some iced tea mix:
(There's something about Good Host Iced Tea that goes together with working outside on a hot day. Plus I accidentally bought a second tin last summer without realizing I had a nearly-untouched tin at home, so I have a lot of the stuff. And I figured it would help stave off the shaky feeling I sometimes get after working outside in the heat for a while.) How did it go? I finished off both the water bottle *and* the pitcher, and had a dry mouth and very little urge to use the loo when I came inside six hours later. Perhaps I should have had two pitchers...

Anyway, here's some random photos of my garden:

Plums are growing:
(And tiny ones are falling off... I should probably look into what cross-pollinates with a Pembina plum.) Some of the plums are marked:
Maybe dad's right, and it is the squirrels eating them, rather than racoons.

Some branches on the plum weren't looking very happy, so I pruned them off. I'm rather disturbed by this:
That does *not* look like a happy branch! What is the culprit? Two possible suspects are these things that look like scale insects:
And something that caused the wounds on the branch:
I'll have to do some research...

I just like this photo of the flowers on my green onions:
They're both similar to and different from the flowers on my chives.

I can't wait until my garlic is ready:
I'm so excited!!! Mmmm... garlic I grew myself! I'm going to need to plant much more, though... I'd really love to be able to harvest enough to last me a year (assuming I can get it to keep that long) plus have cloves to plant for the next year. I'm working towards that!

I actually did make real progress on the vegetable gardens:
This is the second raised bed to be set into dirt, and by the time I went in on Saturday evening, it was half full of dirt, as you can see here. From another angle:
I left space between it and the walks on two sides because I figured it would be nice to have a bit of room to play with when I lay the bricks properly, and I'd like to get the driveway done properly sometime, and don't want the raised bed to get in the way. I may have cut it a bit close as it is... I suppose I'll find out later.

I decided on Saturday that I have gardening ADD. When I suggested this to a neighbour, he said it was called "having too much to do". Perhaps. I went out on Saturday with the express plan of digging the vegetable gardens and filling raised beds. What I actually did:
- pulled random weeds in various places
- watered plants waiting to be planted plus the hanging basket in the back
- turned the compost in the composter that I have going
- decided the compost was looking pretty good, and so mucked with the dirt beneath the second composter so that it sat a bit more level so I could start using it
- put the remainder of last fall's leaves in the second composter
- moved the extra irises that were still alive to where the leaves had been (and put the dead & rotting bits in the composter)
- threw out the remaining scraps of carpet being used as weed barrier
- pruned a few branches on the plum
- pruned a few plum suckers and volunteer Manitoba maples (I'll worry about the roots later... this will at least stunt them)
- moved the second suet bird feeder from the plum tree to the much more popular location in the spruce (the one there is empty again, and I think I'll wait until fall before buying refills again... although the sparrows were enjoying the suet on Sunday)
- pulled the rhubarb leaves (plus stalks) that were covering the walkway or had been beaten up by the rain
- sat and watched the goldfinch
- set and half filled a raised bed

Notice how low on the list the raised bed is? >_< I did double-dig (well, at least quickly) under the raised bed to remove as many weed roots as I could. There was a bit of a hump where I put this raised bed, plus turning the soil and digging the post holes produced a significant amount of dirt already inside the bed, so I added the coco earth to it to loosen it, and will keep my fingers crossed that all the rocks still there (I tossed the larger ones into the driveway) won't prove too much of a pain.

Observation: if you over-hydrate coco soil and leave it to sit for a few weeks while more rain falls on it... it has a rather sulphury smell when you finally dig it in to the garden. (Whoops.) Well, at least it's doing its job now. I used it all in the dirt you see here, and so had to use peat moss in the dirt I added Sunday.

Sunday's gardening in the next post.


jess said...

are you going to cut the garlic scapes and eat them? that's one of my favorite treats! I grew enough garlic last year (I planted ~20-24 heads worth) to last us an entire year. It has kept fine in the (cool, dry) garage. :)

Josee said...

Your garlic scapes look ready to harvest now - a good substitute for garlic cloves while you're waiting for those to mature. :)

noricum said...

Hmmm... I should... they'd go well with the bok choy I bought at the farmer's market...